Friday, September 12, 2014


“Intervals” is one term for it, “threshold work” another.
The recipe is simple: periodicity, intensity, and repetition
broken by small periods of recovery. The process is not.

Intervals require the mind be taught to heel and be still
despite its knowing the somatic stress to come. Emotional
memory is no friend to muscle memory in this situation.

The kindness of athletes comes, I think, from understanding
that we all suffer, whether fast or slow, and in our suffering
we’re more alike than different. This gut-sense physiology

is our bounding box, our interface, our permeable gift to
one another, and threshold work our furnace, lungs the
tuyeres for the chemical and alchemical changes wrought.

It’s not unusual for speed work to produce fits of rage or
tears. I’ve learned it isn’t from discomfort, however, just
our sympathetic system on overload. But if we’re mindful

of the intervals, the thresholds we cross and re-cross, our
bounding box becomes a bit looser, our legs faster, strides
more like skimming, emotions and motion at last all in play.

1 comment:

am said...

This describes my experience with yoga poses.

Gut-sense physiology. Fits of rage or tears. Emotions and motions at last all in play.