The end of effort

Monday Wednesday Friday

That’s when I go to the gym. But sometimes i don’t. I miss a day. But that’s the plan.

And when I go, I start with running. Running is important to me.

I was reading about how I might run better and faster, and learning about the maximum heart rate.

there is a formula: 220 minus your age and then you are supposed to keep your heart rate lower than 85% of the maximum

That formula says that my maximum heart rate is 175

But when I run, sometimes I have run so that my heart rate goes above 170.

Looking over these numbers, I am wondering what this all means.

What happens if I hit my maximum heart rate? That sounds like some kind of scary zone.

My watch monitors my heart rate while I’m running or I wouldn’t even know about this. I keep looking at it to see where I am in my exertion level.

In my mind, I imagine that I can run like the god Mercury, I can stride across the ground, with 7 league strides. Each step pushes my body off the ground and I bound forward weightlessly.

In my mind.

When I actually run, reality is involved. I think about my strides, wondering if they should be longer or quicker or both. I know that I am not weightless. I tilt my watch face up to catch how fast my heart is going. Slow down.

Stay moderate. Stay moving. Let the distance fall behind.

Once, on my run, I was caught behind a fast walker on the left and a slow runner on the right. I was not that much faster than the fast walkers, but I had to duck around and inbetween then and the slow running to travel and my pace.

I saw it coming. Remember? I’m not that fast. I had several paces to decide what to do.

I knew I’d been wanted to keep a moderately fast pace, but I had to get through this bottleneck.

I push down the balls of my feet and sped through. Doubling my pace and swooped around the walkers and past the runner and back into my usual groove.

That right there? that was a push. That was a reach deep for a bit more.

In that instant, I had the more.

I think the maximum heart rate is to tell me that there is a limit to the more. I cannot always burn the candle on both ends. There are times when there is not more to give.

And if I want to have that push in reserve, I better not run at 100%. Both running and other parts of my life.

There will always be that circumstance that take an extra something. I want to keep the extra in reserve, and know when to let it go when I don’t have it. There is a limit and it’s good to know what it is.

Not all of life has the metronome┬álike my heart. But┬ámy wisdom and intuition can give that information, if I stay aware that it’s there.