A few weeks ago, I decided I was going to start running.
Certainly not because I feel "free" or because it's "therapeutic". Plenty of people say they get a runners high, and that running makes them feel something. That's not the case for me...not really, anyways. I mean, most of the time as I'm running all I can think about is how badly I want to stop running. I don't particularly love it.
It's also not the best cardio. It's great, and builds endurance, but I burn double the calories in my Kickboxing or Bootcamp or Circuit classes. So it's not as if I am doing it to accelerate my weight loss.
I'm doing it because for most of my life, I couldn't run. Okay- I COULD run. For about 2 minutes- at the most. Even as a little kid, when I was much lighter, I was the last in my class to finish the mile, every single year. At field hockey practice in high school I was always lagging behind. As I got older, and my weight became more of an issue. I only got slower. I remember the first year I did the color run. It was my 24 th birthday and I was in Indianapolis. My best friend Sam and I were running together- at least that was the plan. But we made it about 20 steps before I told her to go ahead of me- my legs had already given up.
Now, I can run a full mile without stopping. It takes me a longer time than most, but I can do it. I've been running a little over 2 miles for the past few weeks.
It is incredibly liberating to be able to do something you've never been able to do before. It's as if I have overcome something. It's like I am telling everyone who's ever told me I can't that I CAN.
I don't know if you'll ever hear me say the words "I love running". Because I don't. I actually hate it, most days. But what I do love is that I AM running. That I can run.
Each time I finish a run I feel incredibly grateful to have been given the strength and determination to keep going- and to break these barriers. I may not necessarily get the "runners high", but I do get this urge to encourage everyone else to fight past whatever is holding them back. Because it is possible to accomplish something you never imagined possible.