Tag Archives: experience

The Last Step

“Imagine that you are taking your last step. And someday you will be taking your last step. You’ll eventually have one last breath.”

I was practicing walking meditation downstairs of the dharma center during a day long retreat meditation this weekend, taking the teacher’s words of advice into every stride.

I could feel the soft carpet below my feet and the cool basement air on my skin. My gaze was watching each careful step that I took as I cradled one hand in the other just below my belly. I could hear my jeans brush together as one leg passed in front of the other.

With each step, I felt my heel land then slowly roll onto my mid foot. Then onto the balls of my feet. I sensed each toe plant before my heel would rise. As my foot lifted off, I could feel my knee rise and bend, the extension of my fascia, my bones creaking in my ankle and the second toe being the last contact with the ground.

My eyes blinked gently. My breath was easy.

The room still had that brand new smell of a new building with fresh furnishings.

The more aware I became, the slower my steps became. I was mindful of every movement and everything my senses could detect.

If this were my last step, I wanted to grasp everything in the moment that I could. I wanted to be submissive to the whole experience and I wanted to appreciate all that I could.

Looking back on this practice, what would you think or do if you were to actually take your last step or your last breath? How would you feel? Would you take everything in with pleasure or would you have an immediate regret take hold? Would you wish you had done things differently or wish you had said something you never did? Would you wish you were somewhere else? Would you be happy? Would you feel accomplished with your life? Would you feel fulfilled?

It could be a morbid thought but it could also be an eye opening realization. My recommendation is to reflect on your life and to imagine taking your last breath.

Be alive and mindful with everything you do. The purpose of your life is this moment and each moment that follows. Appreciate all that is around you and never take anything for granted. If you aren’t happy and fulfilled, then make a change.

Each unfulfilled step you take is one less you could be taking in the life you want. And you only get so many steps in life.

Wherever you are right now, take a step. Observe everything around you. Would you be okay if it were your last or will your next step be the first in a new direction, a new life, a new beginning?

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The Last Road to a 100

“The longest journey a man must take is the eighteen inches from his head to his heart.”- unknown¬†

There will never be an end, until the end.

Life is full of highs and lows. Often times these come unexpected and duration can never be predicted. It’s in how we deal with these ups and downs that make them worthwhile.

It’s about the attitude we choose to use in life that signifies whether it was a positive or negative experience.

And the only certainty in life is that there will always be highs and lows just like the cyclical patterns of the changing tides. Most likely they will be less frequent, but there will always be a rise and there will always be a fall.

We have to accept that fact.

It would be inhuman to think that you will always be happy or that we will always feel a certain way.

There are so many feelings on the emotional spectrum and it is only natural to go through them.

I have used running as my middle ground to sort through my life journey. Things seem to make more sense while I’m running or after I have finished a run.

I absolutely love the clarity that running brings to me.

Sharing my inner thoughts on here has been wonderful but I know from personal experience that the only way to learn and grow is through your own personal experience. It’s easy to sit and read what I have done and what I have thought, but do you as a reader truly learn anything?

I don’t want to sound cynical but I don’t think so.

And as I mentioned earlier there will always be highs and lows. I have accepted that. With that in mind, there are only so many ways to express how I feel about running. There are only so many ways to interpret the lessons I have learned while going through my own journey.

This will be a lifelong journey.

At some point it will become redundant, for you and for me.

I choose running, or it has chosen me, to be the means of passionate transportation down my own path. Through that, it defines me as a person and it is my metaphorical guide to the book of my life.

I am on this journey from my head to my heart. I have no idea where I am along this journey but I can tell you that I have a ways to go.

I believe that the best way to finding the balance and peace within, you need to live in the present moment. You need to live now, to be fully alive.

Lately, I have worked on being more mindful of my thoughts and actions. Wondering why I do certain things or think a certain way.

Something I have pondered on is why I, and others, feel the need to share our own unique stories.

A lot of times I worry that the reason I do share my life is to increase my self-esteem. That might sound a little dark, but before you post something to the world, sit and think why you are doing that. What inner purpose does it serve?

Life can be long or it can be short, but if you aren’t living in the present, then what’s the point?

As I have become more present with myself and my surroundings, I have found the need to share my journey less important. It’s distracting. And I hope everyone starts to think in the same way.

Just live.

Live and grow your own way.

I am glad I was able to project my evolution over the last few years with everyone but I know that it is time to move on from this.

It’s time to close this chapter and look forward to the horizon of another era. New adventures and new achievements.

This won’t be the end of my running, but this will be the end of Road to a 100 after my next 100 miler. I’ll continue to do ultras and other 100s, but I won’t have any need to document my ups and downs along the way.

Because my experience doesn’t translate to your experience. You have to find that on your own.

You, me, we. We have to go out and live. Not here, online. But out there, in the world.

“You can’t live at all, unless you can live fully, now.” -Alan Watts

Push Your Limits

Like the continuously expanding universe, I believe a person has unlimited potential. At a given moment, an individual is capable of achieving something and reaching a new limit, thus creating a new limit to what they can do. So they too are continuously expanding their universe. No one ever reaches their absolute maximum potential in life. It is imperative you always go and work for what you never thought was possible so you can keep pushing your limits, to live a life worth experiencing.