There is an odd displacement to running without a GPS. There is nothing to accurately gauge my distance, to gauge my pace, and to tell me how I am faring. For the second day in a row my Garmin has misfired on my run. So today I run old school. I go by feel alone to mete out my efforts. Guided by years of experience running a trusty route. A route in which I can with happy alacrity point out where each and every kilometre marker should be.
Who needs you Garmin?
In the critically acclaimed documentary Spirit of The Marathon it is referred to as Zen Running. This manner of running without heed to a watch. And it is liberating. It is peaceful. Without that tell-tale beep to announce the passing of yet another kilometre, the pressures and dictates of speed and pace are indeed obviated.
It is just me and the road ahead.
But I am at heart an analytical sort. Some would say obsessive-compulsive. I would politely posit thorough and dedicated. I thrive when I scrutinize my training runs. Comparing and contrasting. Am I faster today? Where did I lose pace compared to the last time? And more importantly come race day, did I PB?
Perhaps for now I am not quite ready to join the hallowed ranks of the Zen Runner. Perhaps my mortalness still beseeches the technological assurance that my kilometres are being accurately counted, my speed being dutifully recorded, for my own semblance of posterity.
So tomorrow, as I step out to the wintry darkness for yet another run, I will do so in silent prayer that my footing is sure, my legs strong, and that the GPS gods are with me.