Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The Final Stop

Have you ever considered what happens when we stop? Not just slow down or back-off, but stop altogether. Quit. Cease and desist. 

In keeping with the holistic metaphorical theme of the blog, you should quickly understand that I mean stop in the context of both training, racing and life. When we stop training we lose. We lose fitness, we lose vitality, we lose flow, we lose self esteem and we put growth on hold. If we do this long enough, our eventual demise is assured much quicker, and with much less quality, than had we pushed courageously onward. When we stop racing we lose the thrill, joy, camaraderie, value, drama, excitement, meaning and energy that only the heat of battle can bring. And when we stop in life?

We die. We have stopped. There is nothing left. No movement. No heartbeat and no pulse. There is no electrical current to the brain and no life. The final stop. End of the line. 

Let's be real here. This is going to happen to us all. There is no escape. One day each of us will arrive at the final stop. The termination of this trip. The end of the journey and the closing of the chapter. 

I think it is our individual responsibility to make the adventure as full of value, as exciting and enriching as we can. To keep moving as long as we can, as fast as we can, with as much joie de vivre as we can muster. Sure we all slow down, this is the aging process, it is natural, we lose range of motion and flexibility, we endure diminishing muscle mass and loss of bone density. It takes longer to warm up and we tire easier. I recognize all these because they have happened to me. I have wrinkles, a few scars and gray hair. I have been on this train a while. I know the conductor well.

But I ain't gonna stop. I ain't gonna spend the rest of my tenure on the couch or in the station. I ain't gonna slow down either. Not no how, not no way. 

I had this thought the other day as my legs were screaming with lactic acid induced pain and agony:


Keep moving my friends. Run when you're tired, ride when inspired. That train is going to reach the final stop soon enough, let's grab some gusto on the way. All aboard. 

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