My heart can't ache so badly when it must instead spend it's energy pumping blood to the muscles that flex and stretch across my knees, hips, and ankles.
I focus not on the things that keep me up at night; those things that are out my control and only make me feel afraid and helpless.
Instead, I focus on the hill ahead of me, the tension that builds in my thighs as the earth rises under my feet and the satisfaction of reaching the top.
I focus on lifting my knees and my chest and landing each stride on my forefoot.
I focus on slowing my exhale to maximize the perfusion of air between lungs and blood.
I focus on the sensation of sweat building on my upper lip and my forehead, and eventually pooling and running down my chin and the curves of my postpartum cheeks.
As the rhythm of my feet on pavement or gravel or grass lulls me, my mind will most certainly drift; but I don't dare let it get too far away from the present. When my thoughts do threaten to go someplace ugly or worrisome, I find comfort in the familiar sensations of my body in motion. Those sensations bring my attention back to the present moment, where there is nothing but me and the road and forward momentum.
With each stride, I deposit my a piece of my anxiety on the ground below...
...and I don't look back.