Why I Run
Everyone has a different reason for running. For some, it is a magical experience full of endorphins, grace, and speed. Some people run and contemplate the wonder of life and find it calms and quiets their minds.
My experience is nothing like that.
I run because I can and each time I do it, I am totally amazed it is happening. My runs all start something like this:
Me: I should try to get a run in.
Also Me: I really don’t feel like running, I could do some weights and then run tomorrow.
Me: I could run for five minutes, couldn’t I? Seriously, that is not committing to much of anything.
Also Me: Ok, it’s settled, I’m running for five minutes.
If I’m running on the treadmill, the next 15+ minutes go like this:
Me: Ok, I’ve been running two minutes and I’m still breathing pretty well, I can totally do this for five minutes.
Also Me: Because I walked the first one minute forty seconds, I should probably run until the timer hits 6:40 so I get a true five minutes in.
Me: Who runs to 6:40??? That’s ridiculous. A nice even 10-minutes makes more sense.
Also Me: Because I walked that first one minute forty seconds, I could probably run until the time shows 11:40 so it is an even 10-minute run.
Me: I hate those weird, uneven times, I’m going to wait until I hit twelve minutes on the timer.
Me: I feel pretty good, I can probably go at least one more minute at a faster pace.
Seriously, this is what it is like for me EVERY time. When I’m running a 5K the conversation revolves around whether or not I can tough it out through one more song on my iPod. Or maybe one of my favorite songs comes on and SURELY I would not want to waste WALKING while my favorite song is on.
When I ran a half-marathon, I did pretty well the first three miles using the song conversation. The next five miles, it became geographic. For example, “Gabe, just run until you hit that curve in the trail.” If I arrived at the curve and there was a nice slope of downhill, I knew it would be silly to waste the gift of gravity, so I ran that next portion as well. At mile eight, believe it or not, I hit a second wind AND my favorite clump of fun and fast songs came on, but from miles ten on I was back to geographical landmarks. My goal was to finish in three and a half hours. I finished in three hours 28 minutes.
Whatever gets you out there, whatever gets you moving (running, hiking, biking), use it. I always feel a sense of victory when I challenge myself and follow through. Don’t worry if you aren’t in love with it at the beginning. Maybe you will learn to love it. Maybe you will just appreciate the fact that you are ABLE to do it. Maybe you can encourage someone else to step out and give it a try.
Come on, you could surely get yourself out there for five minutes, couldn’t you?