We all knew it was coming.
Most of us know it is the right thing
Most of us accept what needs to be done.
I am not going to throw in my usual flippant comments and jokes here because sometimes it’s not the right time. You could be unkind and say it never is the right time for my jokes but later, come on, it’s serious time.
This is unlike anything we have been through before for most of us. Now I am not going to go over old ground or get involved in any of the arguments that people are having online but I am going to stick by the straight forward facts. But man, the arguments, point scoring and pettiness, it makes me sad, it makes me despair. It adds to my stress, adds to the already cloudy head I have. As an admin for a busy running forum I was ready to walk away from it this week as people who would normally be good posters and intelligent posters became rambling and rude self appointed experts. Sack the scientists, let’s go to our Running Friends Correspondent for an update. Be nice people!
Anyway, at this moment in time in the UK, in times like these, we are fortunate that we are still getting the opportunity to get out once a day into the fresh air to exercise – be it a walk, a run, a cycle. Don’t drive somewhere to do it, or look for loopholes, this is what we are currently able to do, and it’s a good thing. We all do our running for different reasons but for a lot it’s a boost to mental health, and I certainly know that from my perspective – currently doing a few peoples jobs remotely from a claustrophic loft – that 20 minutes, 30 minutes, an hour or whatever a day when I finish can help my sanity.
The virus itself is discussed in detail in so many other places, I am no expert so I won’t preach. I will only preach about what I know about. And that is the importance of staying active through all this. This will not just help your body but your mind. Don’t spend a few days eating Bourbons and Toffypops like I did just because my marathon was cancelled. We are worth more than that. Though Toffypops are the biscuits of the Gods and I would accept sponsorship.
My friends at Balega are pushing the very true words #runningisntclosed and it hits home. Get out that wee run if you can. Still buy yourself that wee treat – the socks, the shoes, the t shirts, keep your local running shops going in the tough times. Hit that treadmill if you are fortunate enough to have one. Or give me yours if you’d rather have Toffypops.
Have that wee walk to clear the head. Do a yoga online session, spin that bike that’s been in the corner of your room for 5 years, there are umpteen different kinds of online classes free and available out there for different disciplines, indoor cycling, general fitness. Let your mind drift away for that small time and make it about you. You need it. I know I do.
One of my problems is my mind doesn’t switch off, so I have to make it switch off just now. My current favourite when running, if I am not doing reps, is to link my aftershokz headphones to my Garmin 645 and either listen to a good playlist on Spotify or a good podcast. My current favourite podcast is the Tartan Running Shorts one, out weekly and long enough for a long run, or 2 or 3 shorter ones. Takes me away into another world for a wee while. These guys, despite being from Aberdeen, have a good sense of humour, have good guests on the show, and the only real thing lacking is that they don’t have me as their West Coast correspondent but they did give me a shout out in their latest podcast so all forgiven 🙂 They still ignore my blog though but we can’t account for their taste 🙂 The main reason for me mentioning them though is that I really bought into something that they have started doing, the #runtogetherapart movement, just a wee way of letting people know we are still there. A simple wee picture of your shoes, the laces in a heart, and soon hundreds of people were buying in and sharing. Strava, insta, facebook, wherever, it’s nice.
So back to the entire point of this post. While it is crucial we all go by the rules to protect ours and other physical health make sure we look after our own mental health in the ways that work for you. #fitnessnotcancelled # runtogetherapart
Find the way that works for you. Open up and talk to others, ask for help and suggestions, don’t get swallowed up in your head. On the flipside don’t look for loopholes and don’t go abusing each other behind your keyboards for taking a different perspective on the rules. In most cases if you have to question it then it’s outside the real scope. The accountant head forever on – substance over form.
Try to keep engaging, being it on online forums, through blogs, on Strava, on insta, but keep the community going, you never know who you might be helping through a dark moment or period. Be civil, be respectful, and let that spark in yourselves never go out.
So over to you, make sure there is a light that never goes out.
Stay connected and stay safe, and remember, because my wife tells me I love hashtags,
#thereisalighthatnevergoesout #runtogetherapart #fitnessnotcancelled #runningisntclosed #berespectful
Have a song, possibly the best song ever written.