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athletic lessons

February 13, 2008

It’s funny how doing multiple sorts works to enhance each sport.
Biking has given me serious endurance, the mental ability to concentrate on a full day workout and the physical ability to keep moving that long. It’s also given me a traffic awareness and the quick thinking to not (often) get hit by a car.
Yoga taught me balance, enhanced my breathing, and helped me be calm.
Swimming, my new sport, is teaching me to breath relaxed. It’s reminding me not to let my asthma run my life. I discovered just the other day that I can breath slower than I want to when I’m working hard. I always get caught up and start panting, but you can’t do that if your face is in the water.
All these things help me run. Ironically I’m behind in the running portion of my iron man, so I’ve been going out for the past few nights, and thinking about the other sports I do. I’ve been able to breath more calmly even when my lungs tighten up, which is a new lesson added on to those from sports I’ve been doing longer. Of course, running has it’s own lessons. The intensity and length of the workout has taught me just how strong I am. I’ve learned quick reflexes not to trip on things, and pain tolerance when I do fall. I’ve learned how to control my stride, and that’s taught me about my body and it’s motions. Running competitively gave me determination which I think really has helped me get through school. Of course, “stubbornness” could be substituted for “determination” there. Then there’s the pride of accomplishment, and the runner’s high, which make one love the world all the more.

There’s a phrase: “A well educated person should know something about everything and everything about something.”
I’ve always felt that was a good idea and attempted to live by it. Lately I’ve been really trying to expand back into my old horizons. It’s so easy when only studying one subject to only live one subject. I don’t have an orchestra any more, and no gen eds to make me think about other topics. To fight this, after finishing Harry Potter in French, I started reading Euripides, the Greek tragic playwright. That has furnished discussions with Catalina, and a couple other people to a lesser extent, talking about the themes and characters of Greek tragedy and comparing it to Shakespeare. I’ve also been exploring poetry, and tonight had a lovely discussion with Sean about Robert Frost’s “Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening”. I like this. I like being PhD students who have other interests in addition to our field of study. I like having shared other interests with the people around me.

I’ve always said I’d like to marry someone who appreciates words the way I do. It’s funny, because I think Sean might, but I don’t even see him as a dating prospect. I was thinking though, that maybe it’s not that some people necessarily see more in words than others do. It might be that some of us get hung up on them more, that they amaze us more, almost that we’re simpler than others and more easily impressed. Whatever the case may be, I’m glad to be appreciating words again.
Ironically enough, I’m listening to music in Italian right now, which means I can’t understand the words at all.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. February 14, 2008 8:29 pm

    Appreciating words (sights and sounds too?) again, sounds like you’re in a better mood.

  2. February 15, 2008 5:28 am

    It’s more me being aware that things things make me happy so I’m trying to focus on then. We’ll see how it goes.

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