I am not just irreligious in my tendencies, but also areligious. I want to change my mind all the time to reflect my growing experience, to open myself to the possibility of being wrong, maybe even very wrong. The sorts of strictures and dogma that go along with religions, by definition, don’t really jibe with how I’m trying to be.
For example, I don’t think you should listen to music while you run in the woods. The purist in me can almost get angry about this, but you know I love music. When John wrote about cranking up the heavy riffs and heading into the woods the other day, I could see (hear?) the appeal.
I think I maintain the view that the woods can’t subsume me in quite the way I like them to if I’m not tuned into both the sights and the sounds. The trail isn’t a place for digital distraction.
Am I wrong?
If I ride the trainer in the basement, sitting there in one place, cranking out the watts, I like music. I like very loud, very chaotic music. Somewhere, there in the miasma of sound, I can find a peaceful, even meditative place. It’s counter-intuitive, probably, but maybe it’s like ritalin for the hyperactive. My mind needs to be overloaded in some way to become clear.
I don’t need this in the woods. In the woods, there’s plenty to think about. The trail demands a lot of attention.
On the road, that’s another story. Road running is like purgatory. You’re just there, alone with the work, very little to distract you from getting tired or straining against a long, straight hill. I’d advocate music for road running.
But I don’t want to get religious about anything. What do you think? Do you music? When? Where?