Wednesday, August 6, 2008

When I run I feel his pleasure

I didn’t go far enough for an endorphin kick, but the two miles I ran on the beach this morning still felt pretty damn fine. This is just about my favorite run anywhere, made sweeter by my rebound from yesterday’s debacle. I was in my own world; the fog was so thick I couldn’t see the dunes. It was like being wrapped in a warm, wet blanket.

It’s tempting to posit a natural connection between spirituality and running. Even at the amateur level, running is predicated on long periods of isolation, meditative rhythm, and neurological deoxygenation (if you go far enough), which can take the mind to interesting places. It means many things to me, but right now it means I’m well enough to do something I love. When I run I go inside myself, I think, I pray, I simply enjoy the body I’ve been given. There’s a great line in the movie, “Chariots of Fire,” where the character playing Eric Liddell says, “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel his pleasure.” I may not be very fast (or “fahst” as a good Scotsman would say), but I do regularly feel God’s pleasure when I run. There must be something about its simplicity that he commends.

A good run makes for a good day.


wags said...

Glad your life is, in some ways, returning to normal. Our chat yesterday and your description of the fog in this blog makes me long for a return trip to the beach. I guess that will have to wait. Keep running--it's good for the body and soul. Enjoy the rest of your stay in Waldport and I hope the interferon effects are minimal today.
Take it easy,

Anonymous said...

Peter - on the same day as your run, I was running along the magnificent Barafundle Beach on the Pembrokeshire coast in South Wales. Sharing a National Trust cottage with four women for a week (one menopausal, three hormonal teens), running was a blessed relief for me too. And of course, being the British summer, it lashed it with rain for most of the week. I'm even looking forward to getting back to work tomorrow...
Keep running. all the best. Philip

Anonymous said...


Glad you are finding the strength to feel the pleasure of running. Keep going! Keep enjoying the moment.


Anonymous said...

I just watched "Chariots of Fire" last weekend (not yet having read your blog) and was reminded again that the line about feeling God's pleasure is one of my favorites. It isn't running for me - but certainly doing the things for which He made us!- like moving to Latvia. Your blog really keeps me thinking and processing life. Blessings, Peter.