It is safe to presume that every single individual that exists on this planet suffers from a plethora of psychological disorders, varying in degrees of severity. Due to their prevalence, I would almost refer to them as psychological characteristics. Or you know, what makes you you. Some people become depressed for macroscopic issues in which they are not personally involved; others wander off and forget from where they originally started (socially endeared as wanderlust, perhaps?). Some people just exhibit several personas with the use of one body (something I could personally attribute as a talent if I knew it wasn’t an actual health liability). I am a chronic runner. Not professional, not athletically trained, not an aspiring Olympian runner, maybe not even hardcore (if we dismiss relativity). Chronic, obsessive, dedicated, foolishly ardent.
Psychological disorders are commonly treated with words or narcotics. Call me self-indulgent, but I enjoy gratifying the itches of my need to run. My disorder doubles as my only cure. I find excuses to run, including the absence of an excuse. Whether it’s three slices of cake or beautiful weather, or new shoes, or a new route, or someone making me angry, if I dropped my food that afternoon, if it’s raining, if I rocked an exam, or my workout didn’t make me tired enough. Maybe I can’t sleep or I feel like crying. I run until it hurts, I run even if I’m not fully healed from injuries – past blog posts will attest to this with shameless veracity. I run because I want to be faster than others, I run because it’s the only thing that will preserve whatever levels of sanity I may have left. I run on days my ego has been pitifully debilitated. Maybe it keeps me from yelling at people who drive me crazy. Maybe. They all mean the same thing to me: I get to run.
There is a pounding against my feet that instantly replaces the pounding of headaches, both physical and emotional. Either the melodious rhythms of The Strokes vibrating into my ears, or the noise of cars on the road, or the innate buzzing of crickets and leaves rustling, quiets all other disorienting cacophonies in my mind. It becomes mentally and physically impossible to dwell on anything else once I enter some sort of physical nirvana-like state: my body comes into full awareness of engaging in challenging, constant motion that requires the fully concentrated cooperation of my mind, my lungs, my chest, my legs, my core. Suddenly I forget that I’m running. It is a therapeutic, and to an extent, painfully self-inflicted paralysis. I feel like I’m always my best when I’m running, because it is when I am constantly pushing my limits. Perhaps sometimes past the limits of sanity or safety. My disorder doubles as my only cure. Some people call me crazy. I think it’s the only thing that disqualifies me from being so.