Most people do the opposite of what they should. They so often look to reward themselves. They so often seek pleasure. But, that’s without first doing anything to deserve that pleasure. People want to sit and relax and just enjoy doing nothing. But they have not done “something” first.
I purposely deprive myself of pleasure so that I may enjoy that pleasure maximally when the time comes. In training runs, sometimes I’ll have no fluids becoming crazy thirsty so that when I am finished, the simple act of drinking liquids is wonderful.
Sometimes when super, super tired, I will skip a nap or even sometimes purposely go on a very long run after working a night shift to make myself ridiculously tired. This way I will really, really enjoy climbing into bed when the time comes. It also simulates sleep deprivation in an ultra. It’s hard to fall asleep when you’re running but It’s even harder to run when you’re falling asleep!
Food: I love becoming a ravishingly hungry, sometimes not eating during long runs or sometimes skipping meals so that when I do eat, almost anything tastes absolutely delicious. Even lima beans! (My least favorite food.)
People want to eat a big tasty meal. But they may not be hungry. People often go to sleep when they may not even be tired. If one deprives themself of pleasure for a period of time, they will much more enjoy that pleasure when the time comes. It is all about self-sacrifice. This takes tremendous self-discipline. To me, discipline is one of the most important assets that a person can have.
I’m not like most people! That is the case in so many ways! Let me explain.
Too often people say I am crazy. “No!” I reply. I am “extreme.” I live in the extreme. Most ultra marathoners are. I’m not a thrillseeker. I don’t live dangerously. To me jumping out of an airplane is crazy because it’s so dangerous. Exploring one’s physical and mental limits is extreme. That’s a good thing.
When I push myself to the extreme limits, it helps me appreciate the middle ground. It helps me most appreciate the small, mundane, everyday things in life. The middleground is where most people exist. I don’t want to live in the middleground. The middleground is average. I don’t want to be average. Do you want to be average? If so, that is fine for you. But that is not fine for me. If you want to be average, live like everybody else does. Play it safe. Don’t challenge yourself. In my opinion though, you’ll miss out on a lot that life has to offer. And when you’re old, you’ll probably have regrets.
It’s all about extremes baby. The greater the pain…The greater the pleasure. The greater the risk…
The greater the reward.
I am like a rubber band. The further you stretch the rubber band, the farther it will fly when you release it. You just have to try to stretch that rubber band as far as possible without it snapping. The same occurs with the human mind and the human body. The more you challenge it, the more you will get out of it. And the greater will be the pleasure.