from mile to marathon

The journey of a thousand leagues begins from beneath your feet.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

the issue of smoking

Taking notes for this entry took me a few consecutive days of struggle in the first half of May. My first run of the week was a scheduled 5K, a walk in the park compared to my latest 8-mile achievement. It should have been easy, but it wasn’t.

I ran too soon after dinner, and my tummy felt full, although I had taken care to restrict my intake. At least when it came to food. Perhaps I had had one cocktail too many. On top of all this I sensed, for the first time, that my running body did not agree with my smoking. I felt it in the cells of my lungs, in the strain of my muscles, in the disturbing uproar of all molecules. Not in some moral precept of the brain.

I hit a barrier that day. It was finite and certain and related to oxygen, and I recognized it instantly without ever having encountered it before. It was instantly familiar, like all the beacons of self-destructiveness. I knew it so well as if it were written in print: SMOKERS NOT ALLOWED BEYOND THIS POINT.

Some part of me loathed myself and my acquiescence to a disgustingly smelling habit. Part of me though registered the milestone with a jolt of intellectual satisfaction. I had expected it. I had been anxious about it.
When I started running it was hard to distinguish whether running was harder on the lungs or on the muscles. Then for weeks I could not feel I was smoking. That was bound to take an end.

So now the illusion just ended.


Post a Comment

<< Home