Wednesday, June 11, 2014

I run because I need to escape...

Most days start with glancing at a daunting 'to do' list. This is usually followed by skimming through a seemingly endless parade of unread emails.

A cup of coffee might inspire me to actually respond to some of said emails. But, usually I need two cups to get the pistons firing.

What unfolds for the next few hours is a frenzy of activity including responding to and sending emails, fielding a few calls, a multitude of social media posts, crafting the next email newsletter, and doing whatever I can to keep things rolling.

I had no real idea what I was getting into when I started my own business. I simply wanted to share my love of running with others. I learned the reality of being a business owner quickly.

I don't have any kids, but my experience owning and operating my own business is an experience that feels comparable in many regards.

It is a 24/7 job. It never ends. If you don't feed it, it starves. If you don't nurture it, it dies. You worry about it constantly.

You do whatever you can to help it succeed. When there's a win, it is HUGE. When there's a loss, it can be devastating.

You find yourself wondering constantly if you're doing a good job, wondering what you can do better, and wondering what you are NOT doing that could make it healthier and happier.

Given the all consuming nature of running a business, it is not easy to disconnect, detach, and let go. Sometimes, it feels impossible to do so.

A few years ago, I went to Turkey and knew I would be off the grid for more than two weeks. The process of preparing for this was inordinately stressful.

Only when I got on the plane and literally left my business behind me could I exhale, inhale, and repeat.

This is not to say it wasn't on my mind. But, it wasn't at the front of my mind. It wasn't consuming all facets of my mind.

I don't get to take too many vacations like the one I did to Turkey. But, the need to escape is one that can't be ignored.

Sometimes, I can escape by watching a movie. Sometimes, escape comes in the form of a nice glass of Pinot Noir.

But, the best escape I know of is right outside my front door. Just a few steps later, a weight is lifted. A few deep breaths and the beast of burden releases its grasp.

After a few miles, I have escaped. I am somewhere else. Whether it is familiar or foreign, I have been transported.

Slow or fast. Long or short. Running provides an escape from the seemingly countless professional challenges that ebb and flow, but never end.

Despite the fact that I love my 'kid', he drives me crazy sometimes. So, I run because I need an escape....

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