Sunday, January 2, 2011

2012 and 100k and the aleph.

i.  a series of loops, like a 100k.  

The body, the mind, the soul, the collective operates in cycles, layers of cycles, cycles of cycles. . . a World of habit and rhythm. And, most days, I mosh into that patterned existence with a heave/ho and a belief that my labor matters. a faith preserves & propagates further effort.  a momentum drives the body forward. Be it stillness or movement, the body internalizes habit, learns and adapts, becomes its routine.  thus, the running shoes, a notebook, a dose of music, a few starchy strides down a trail before the loosening.
sometimes, the collapse. The sag, the lag, the lull.  and for now, i feel tired.  enter the taper period of the weymouth woods 100k.  extra sugar in my coffee, a gravity on my bones, a brood.
i operate best by instinct and momentum.  i train (run, paint, write) to build a collaboration of instinct and momentum, and by repetition i sharpen my instinct and strengthen my base.  i progress towards an efficient exertion (whether in paint or language or trail). the body is a momentum, subject to itself, a god-form, a sovereign diety. when the run feels natural, when a mark falls easily, a zen inkbrush moment, when effort is impulse and reward, then you have the core of the work down.  then, you have the alignment. its an aleph of existence when a body cuts through the woods in its own strength, a communion between a runner and the earth, a primitive dance, the pursuit of a new language, a mark. 
To be present in the body's habits, to move as life moves, elusive and calligraphic, and to be engaged- even in routine- is the trick. 2011 was a fine year, thus 2012 begins with the same ideas: to get up, check my head, kick some miles, slow the angst, boil out some pigments and language and nurture the belief that the acts of life, as a continuum, as a narrative, will one day prove to be a coherent form. Otherwise, the vacuum of an existential conundrum: nothing but vast, void inquiry. pernod and cigarette whisps across sartre's nauseau.  i need action:  distillation of act, a distillation by Act.
it is really only when i succumb to easy running, complacency, the Glaze, that i bust my ass on a trail.  if i am tired, but conscious, i slow down to allow for sluggish footwork.  but if i am mindlessly milling, eventually, the ground will steal a kiss.  this has happened several times in the previous month to teach me valuable presence of mind.  it normally follows the thought, "i am running well today."  concentrate on the trail and the body will follow; concentrate on the body and you lose the meaning.   

Kicking. A word of several meanings (maybe) but I can really only focus on two. Kicking in street terms is derived from the involuntary flinches of the legs that comes from a narcotic withdrawal. The leg muscles cramp and ache severely, causing a kicking reflex. The stomach muscles and the heart muscles also constrict and spasm- all the muscles of the body revolt, a horror-bask. the gruel.
the other use of the word is running. Running is a cleansing act. A meditation in movement, a transcendental thrust, time that forces the mind into a nexus of awareness and response, faith and function. Running forces the coordination of mind and body, a belief in their collective aptitude.
running a trail is an act of self-confidence and faith and fitness, all conspiring through a funnel of physicality. 

much libido in the early miles-- craving followed by satiation-- there was massive drive and the knowledge of body, exploratory burn, the capture of touch, layers of mouth and breath, fever, primal moutheyes, hunter ears, heat of pulse, gravity, a soul cascades through a body, an eternal hush, the final limp comfort.
there was a newness of flesh and a celebration thereof. 
in truth, sexiness falls from later miles.  peels back like chafe.  libido devours its own suffering minutea and digests it towards a solitary echo, a vague thought.   the sex longs but there is no more body.
it is a common theme.


To completely reinvent myself.. . . the refashioning might include a buell motorcycle, a glock sidearm, and a wolf named wittgenstein. maybe an obsession with old coins and the alamo. i would register my own constellations.  i would consider the weight of a pillow, how it affects a dream.  i would grow a rat tail.  i would not bother running trails in sub-30 degree weather. i would find the absurdity in running 100k on a trail sufficient to avoid such an endeavor. i would meanwhile cruise on my steel horse and laugh into the wind and chase bears with wittgenstein, referring to the capture and wrestle as a tautological process.

But as it stands, ten days out from my longest race ever, the weymouth woods 100k trail run confronts a dull, tired, flat-minded runner that has little concept of the new year beyond that trail race. the miles have collected like cataracts across my eyes.

iii.  the present.
training eases into a taper. a full taper is not my body's deal: lethargia stones me if i completely stop running. so the runs shorten, slow a bit, switch to nontechnical surfaces, a way to push blood around the legs, keep the momentum of movement in the muscle.  pedaling the surly through a january afternoon becomes a primary exercise, a pleasurable break.
meanwhile, the mind accelerates into doubt, arrogance.  but little more preparation can be accomplished.  it is meat and bone and the results of the conditioning. taper is an easy time and a hard time.

What the body has on race day is the question, the big culmination. marley, wyclef, culture, kronos, dead kennedys, rage, schubert, bach, goat rodeo. nutrition is settled to include gels, fruit, electrolyte beverages, pb&j, protein bars, trail mix. Coffee. things are in place.  i have envisioned later miles, new world miles, and tried to adjust my head for them.  i have a spotlight and a pair of tights.
i have considered tom simpson. 
For now, I am tired and watching kyote play with trains and flash cards.  its 10 in the morning.  the cycle must be free to move, must be free to layer and build and burn.  the act must remain pure, must have weight, ground & gravity, like a painted figure, like a late beethoven fugue, like a passion. there will be myth and collapse and renaissance. a self-devouring.  for me, weymouth is more than a physical run, its a mental/spiritual process.