When I was in high school, I hated running. During volleyball conditioning I’d try to get out of running the three miles for warmup. I even threw shot put and discus on the track team, and we’d drive to the field for practice while the rest of the team ran. Yeah…I was one of those who said they’d only run if something was chasing them.
Flash forward to 2006, when I first picked up running while living in Texas. I was bored, and alone, and it was warm for winter and I wanted to give it a go. So, I slowly started running. I don’t really know how far, or really how long I was running, but I do know it was slow. Then one day, something popped in my hip and I literally drug myself back to my apartment in pain.
I started running again when I moved to Kentucky. After a tumultuous stint in Oklahoma City, and then a few life shatter events upon my move to the Bluegrass State, I had ballooned to a weight I was not proud of. Something got my attention and I started working out again and started to run. My first 5K was the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in 2009, and I haven’t stopped. I competed in my first half marathon, 10K, and obstacle race in 2012, and now I’m training for two half marathons, a 10-miler, and who knows how many obstacle races and 5Ks this year.
Needless to say, I’ve accepted and fully embraced running. Running is a release for me–after a stressful day at work, there’s nothing better than running outside and sweating out the frustration. I love starting my mornings with a run outside with my running buddies–we may not go very fast, but the conversations are good and the calories burned before breakfast always helps. And I love the euphoria I feel after crossing the finish line. There’s nothing better than coming up to the end of a race, hearing the cheers, and turning on the after burners, no matter how exhausted or how much pain you’re feeling. You want to cross that finish line giving it all you’ve got and making sure you have no racing regrets.
Running has given me a confidence that I can do anything I put my mind to. Training for my first half marathon last year was one of the toughest things I have ever gone through physically. I developed injuries that made me doubt if my body could do it, but I persevered and continued to train. And I learned from what I did last year and am applying it to my training for this year.
I’ve embraced the running community, and I feel like they’ve embraced me, not only locally but nationally/internationally via blogging and social media. #Runchat has helped me learn more about running, shoes, clothing, products, races, etc., that I would have had to spend a lot more time searching the vast web for that same information. Instead, it’s all brought to me by one little hashtag. How much simpler can it get?
I still do other workouts besides running–I tend to get bored easily, so I always try to spice things up with different workouts. But I’ve found that it’s running that has been the best for me inside and out.
How do you feel about running?
*This post is part of #Runchat’s “Spreading the Love of Running” for Valentine’s Day.