Emotion vs. Practicality in Running

In life you should really never follow your heart.

Think about it, when you follow your heart, all you are really doing is following your emotions. Instead of thinking, you’re feeling. Why on earth would it be a good idea to make decisions based on our feelings instead of our rational thoughts? If we followed our emotions we’d be bums living in the street with no family, goals, or aspirations. It is important to think long-term and about the repercussions of our decisions. If we simply follow our hearts, we are thinking short-term, in the moment, riding a wave of emotion. Yes, it’s fun, but we can’t live our lives that way. We’d simply never get anything done.

The mind is rational. It gives good advice. It is practical. It thinks long-term. The emotions are whackadoodle. They are wild and free and exotic. The mind records all of our past transgressions and it tells us when we shouldn’t do something or when we should do something, but our emotions tell us to do the opposite. Emotions are hard to deal with when decision-making. Emotions distract us from our goals. In running, I sometimes follow my emotions instead of my mind. This is bad. When I’m physically tired and feeling worn down in a run, I have to ignore my emotions. I have to remember the goals I have set for myself. I have to think of the long term, not the present, short-term discomfort. This is hard to do.

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I believe that people that tend to be more emotional than practical are at a disadvantage when it comes to distance running. I would be one of these emotional types. In life, I find that my knee-jerk reaction to conflict is emotional in nature. I am constantly telling myself, “Dendy, try to think rationally in this situation. Be practical, don’t be emotional.” I also tell myself, “Dendy, ignore that emotional aspect of discomfort. It’s just discomfort. Quit crying about it inside.” This is hard to do.

 

Alas, we are not robots. The world would be so boring if we were all completely logical and pragmatic. Emotions are what give our world vivid color. We are human. We have feelings. If we were to completely ignore our own feelings and the feelings of others we would be complete assholes. Pardon that crassness, but I honestly could not come up with a more fitting word. We are not robots, we are colorful humans. In running, just like in life, practicality in decision-making serves us well. We must balance our emotions and our rational thought.

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So, I’m saying it here. One of my main focuses from here on out is to be more practical and less emotional. I certainly don’t want to become a jerk who has no regard for others’ feelings and never takes them into consideration during decision-making, but I could stand to fixate a little less on my own feelings and the feelings of others. For, things don’t really need to be as big of a deal as I sometimes make them out to be. Sometimes things are clear-cut and simple. In running, for instance, I need to tell myself to focus on my run and not on how I feel about my discomfort. It’s really that simple.

 

So if it’s really that simple, why doesn’t it feel that way? Oh wait, I’m not supposed to place so much emphasis on the way things feel, am I? As you can see, this might take me quite a bit of time.

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