Rio el Corredor dwells with his family on stolen Tonga land, where the paved Los Angeles River meets the eastern end of the Santa Monica mountains. Rio is a writer and spiritual runner, expressing his art of running in the most unorthodox ways possible.
SHARE AN EXPERIENCE THAT CHANGED YOUR PERSPECTIVE.
The births of each of my children. Each dawn of life has presented me with a fresh epiphany. I enter a space of discovery through them as if I’m seeing the world around me for the first time while simultaneously feeling as if everything is possible and nothing is unusual.
WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU SURPRISED YOURSELF?
Last time?! In this chapter of my existence, I’ve been on a continuous journey of unearthing my potentials holistically (Mind, Body, Soul). I’ve found that when all these elements are in harmony, the heights I can climb are immeasurable. Any time I am knocked for six, I jolt right back to an age of discovering how else I can push myself. Documenting my wandering mind and wandering feet as I go.
WHAT IS SOMETHING YOU HAVE NEVER DONE OR TRIED BEFORE THAT YOU WANT TO EXPERIENCE?
My oldest son and I have recently been interested in DIY cabin building, reading books like Lloyd Kahn’s “Shelter” and documentaries like “Alone in the Wilderness”. In consuming these beautiful pieces of literature and stunning visuals, I find myself daydreaming about retreating to a mountaintop to build a self-sustained cabin from beginning to end. Spending mild weathered months up there with the support of my family. Running, building, and writing, and once it all came to fruition, gifting it as a communal space for outdoor folks and creatives alike.
WHAT IS SOMETHING YOU RECENTLY LEARNED THAT LIGHTS YOU UP?
My recent discovery of the Japanese word “Kokoro”, which means Mind, Heart (feeling), and Spirit.
DESCRIBE YOUR PERFECT TRAIL TO RUN. WHAT DOES IT LOOK LIKE, FEEL LIKE, SMELL LIKE? ARE YOU ALONE OR WITH OTHERS?
At first light, you can find me breaking into a steady trot, climbing upward on a single-track trail. The mountainside is so narrow it allows for only one runner and one foot in front of the other. Switchbacks, roots, large rocks, and the occasional forest blowdown keep me on my toes. Where there’s no trail, there’s an abundance of evergreens. The combination of eucalyptus and sage fragrance in harmony with the rhythm of my feet echoes my mind and body into a flow state of blessedness on the descent down along the mountain face.
DO YOU THINK OF RUNNING AS AN ACT OF FREEDOM OR MEDITATION, OR BOTH?
Running is both freedom and mediation. It gives you self-determination, self-realization and liberates the mind, body, and soul. “FREE your MIND, and your FEET will follow”.
WHAT HAS YOUR BODY TAUGHT YOU THROUGH YOUR REGULAR PRACTICE OF RUNNING?
Repetitive movement can lull the mind into a false sense of stasis. Each day brings a different state of awareness. If you don’t heed what your body is signaling, then over time, what could have been an easy adjustment becomes a much larger mountain to climb. The mind is powerful and can mute the body’s attempt to bring awareness to the areas that have fallen out of sync. It is easy to lose focus and be driven by data, but the data doesn’t exist without a functioning body.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT YOURSELF?
My resilience. Endurance can not exist without resilience.
YOU ARE HAVING AN OFF DAY, WHAT IS YOUR FIRST MOVE TO GETTING CENTERED?
Inhale through the nose for twenty seconds, out through the mouth for twenty seconds.
WHEN DO YOU FEEL THE MOST SEEN?
Oddly enough, when I’m the only person on a trail. I can feel the presence of all eyes of the animals, plants, and earth beneath, aware of my existence.
WHAT IS YOUR MOST BELOVED EXPERIENCE WITH WATER?
Daily morning swims at South beach, in South Fremantle, Australia. Dolphins.
YOU COME HOME FROM YOUR RUN AND YOU ARE GETTING READY TO WASH OFF, WHICH ON&ON PRODUCTS DO YOU REACH FOR?
I light the Frankincense & Cinnamon River Path Incense upon my return home. My shower routine involves an all-over wash-off with a practical but enticing body wash that carries the same vibes as the incense (ON&ON Frankincense Hand & Body Wash). I am a massive proponent of sunscreen, especially for us melanated folks. Still, post-run sunscreen and sweat aren’t a good mix. A gentle cleanser (Josh Rosebrook Complete Moisture Cleanse) followed by reapplication of a daily sunscreen (Julisis Sun Emulsion SPF 30), the kind that doesn’t compromise for pasty white hue, sets me up for the remainder of the day.