«Grasping for air» falls short to describe my exertion level that Thursday morning. The air felt so thin it was hard to believe we were at sea level. I was feeling miserable. Even the tiny little bumps on the road were tempting my legs to betray me, and no other part of my body seemed to be capable to come in my rescue. And on top of it, everybody around me, all the other runners, looked so relaxed dashing to the finish line I was sure they were even saving energy for the final stretch. It was an all-out effort, two loops around a previously marked course inside the facilities of a beautiful hotel along the Mayan Riviera. Even though I knew I was not in my best moment, the difference was just too big. The gap between how I was feeling and how confident they were all looking was painfully irreconcilable to me.
That mile and a half running dash is part of the leadership meeting activities the company I work for organizes every year in an effort to promote a healthy and balanced life style among the associates. An initiative I sincerely applaud as I’ve seen how it has benefited some of my co-workers. This time, the good cause was certainly not helping me with my misery. But when I later arrived to the group breakfast, comments about how hard the run had been started to pop up across the tables. It seemed that, except for the naturally gifted (as the case of my boss), we all struggled relatively the same. In fact, reality is I clocked a very decent time: within the first quartile. Would my attitude been different had I known it during the
race? Would that have helped me to be less judgmental towards my own capabilities and performance, hence enjoyed the moment more? Beyond a «sorrow-of-many-is-a-fool’s-consolation»’s case, it seems that we often tend to put too much of our attention outside, both on others and on our own circumstances. Over-thinking about things that are beyond our control. Commonly said —we spend too much time worrying about how come the neighbors’ lawn is always greener—. I guess we better start focusing more on living the moment and less on things that are just lingering in our minds.
“Food for thought”, I told myself while enjoying a generous portion of fruit that had just turned way sweeter.