Quotes from “What I Talk About When I Talk About Running” by Haruki Murakami

Hilda Royn
Hilda Roynhas quoted4 years ago
Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional
Игорь
Игорьhas quoted5 years ago
As I run I tell myself to think of a river. And clouds. But essentially I’m not thinking of a thing. All I do is keep on running in my own cozy, homemade void, my own nostalgic silence. And this is a pretty wonderful thing. No matter what anybody else says.
Steven Halim
Steven Halimhas quoted3 years ago
I have only a few reasons to keep on running, and a truckload of them to quit. All I can do is keep those few reasons nicely polished.
Steven Halim
Steven Halimhas quoted3 years ago
Life is basically unfair. But even in a situation that’s unfair, I think it’s possible to seek out a kind of fairness.
Denys Lushchyk
Denys Lushchykhas quoted4 years ago
We decided we’d go to bed soon after it got dark, and wake up with the sun. To our minds this was natural, the kind of life respectable people lived.
Kristina Nikulina
Kristina Nikulinahas quoted8 days ago
On cold days I guess I think a little about how cold it is. And about the heat on hot days. When I’m sad I think a little about sadness. When I’m happy I think a little about happiness. As I mentioned before, random memories come to me too. And occasionally, hardly ever, really, I get an idea to use in a novel. But really as I run, I don’t think much
Kristina Nikulina
Kristina Nikulinahas quoted8 days ago
I’m often asked what I think about as I run. Usually the people who ask this have never run long distances themselves. I always ponder the question. What exactly do I think about when I’m running? I don’t have a clue.
Kristina Nikulina
Kristina Nikulinahas quoted16 days ago
The thing is, I’m not much for team sports. That’s just the way I am. Whenever I play soccer or baseball—actually, since becoming an adult this is hardly ever—I never feel comfortable. Maybe it’s because I don’t have any brothers, but I could never get into the kind of games you play with others. I’m also not very good at one- on-one sports like tennis. I enjoy squash, but generally when it comes to a game against someone, the competitive aspect makes me uncomfortable. And when it comes to martial arts, too, you can count me out.
Don’t misunderstand me—I’m not totally uncompetitive. It’s just that for some reason I never cared all that much whether I beat others or lost to them. This sentiment remained pretty much
unchanged after I grew up. It doesn’t matter what field you’re
talking about—beating somebody else just doesn’t do it for me. I’m much more interested in whether I reach the goals that I set for myself, so in this sense long-distance running is the perfect fit for a mindset like mine.
Marathon runners will understand what I mean. We don’t really care whether we beat any other particular runner. World-class runners, of course, want to outdo their closest rivals, but for your average, everyday runner, individual rivalry isn’t a major issue. I’m sure there are garden-variety runners whose desire to beat a particular rival spurs them on to train harder. But what happens if their rival, for whatever reason, drops out of the competition? Their motivation for running would disappear or at least diminish, and it’d be hard for them to remain runners for long. Most ordinary runners are motivated by an individual goal, more than anything: namely, a time they want to beat. As long as he can beat that time, a runner will feel he’s accomplished what he set out to do, and if he can’t, then he’ll feel he hasn’t. Even if he doesn’t break the time he’d hoped for, as long as he has the sense of satisfaction at having done his very best—and, possibly, having made some significant discovery about himself in the process— then that in itself is an accomplishment, a positive feeling he can carry over to the next race.
An-nisa Pratiwi
An-nisa Pratiwihas quoted2 months ago
To keep on going, you have to keep up the rhythm.
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
To be able to grasp something of value, sometimes you have to perform seemingly inefficient acts.
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
Maybe it’s some pointless act like, as I’ve said before, pouring water into an old pan that has a hole in the bottom, but at least the effort you put into it remains.
An-nisa Pratiwi
An-nisa Pratiwihas quoted2 months ago
Here it is: Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
No matter how long you stand there examining yourself naked
before a mirror, you’ll never see reflected what’s inside.
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
It doesn’t matter how old I get, but as long as I continue to live I’ll always discover something new about myself.
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
I’m still lugging around that old suitcase, most likely headed toward another anticlimax. Toward a taciturn, unadorned maturity—or, to put it more modestly, toward an evolving dead end.
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
sometimes taking time is actually a shortcut.
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
most cases learning something essential in life requires physical pain.
kntyas
kntyashas quoted2 months ago
whether or not you can stand any more is up to the runner himself.
kntyas
kntyashas quoted2 months ago
is inevitable. Suffering is optional. Say you’re running and you start to think, Man this hurts, I can’t take it anymore. The hurt part is an unavoidable reality, but
Carmen Barranco
Carmen Barrancohas quoted2 months ago
I’ll enjoy and value things that can’t be expressed in numbers, and I’ll grope for a feeling of pride that comes from a slightly different place.
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