|Ryan in the Grasslands
In two weeks, I will be directing my final March ultra event for Extreme North Dakota Racing. It appears that two younger ultra athletes will take leadership of the event in the future. Fresh eyes and fresh ideas are always welcomed! One of my many quirks (for this event in particular) is to mark the course well. I want it to follow the established North Country Trail. Following the Trail is relatively easy when there is little or no snow. In recent years that has not been the case. The trail becomes lost underneath months of snow. This
produces great anxiety within me. I obsess about making certain it is within a couple feet of the Trail. Maps, painted blazes on trees, and GPS tracking makes it feel easier. Yet I still get frustrated when I cannot accurately and with certainty be within my established margin of error.
|Blaze on Oak Leaf Loop
|Which path to take?
Recently I began reading "The Comfort Crisis" by Micheal Easter. There were many reasons why this book attracted my attention. One was its recommendation by another blog I read. I was struck by the discussion of a Japanese practice called, "misogi." It has diverse spin-offs from its original concept. What captured my thoughts was the broad concept of challenges which crush an individual's perception of comfort. As a person takes risks and confronts fears, stress and discomfort rises. As that person accepts and moves into the midst of stress and discomfort, personal resilience and improved self-concept are part of the results This happens even if the challenge is not completed. New vision and expanded views of oneself and the world replace previous structures.
I am in the process. I am not certain of the outcome. Attempting to keep my anxiety in check and moving along the unfamiliar and uncomfortable path is where I am at today. The journey continues!