Now that my half marathon is over, I’ve been giving myself a nice break from running. In fact, I planned on not running at all for a long time. Last Friday on my walk, however, I had the urge to run. I ended up doing a run/walk, alternating as I felt like it. I was interested to find that I didn’t mind the running at all. After having such a tough time in training, I figured I’d be totally over it. It seems, however, that now that I don’t have to be running, I have a greater appreciation for it. Funny how that works, huh? 😉
I was thinking about my life, and all that running has done for me. Back in high school, I hated running. I couldn’t run 1/4 of a mile without stopping to walk. I felt nauseous, my throat and lungs hurt, my legs felt like they couldn’t move, and I was always left feeling discouraged. I absolutely hated it.
Throughout my four years of high school volleyball, I became more accustomed to running. The “thing” within my high school volleyball team was called the Texas Mile (essentially a bleacher mile). We worked up to it throughout the season, and it was always a huge deal. I remember feeling so accomplished when I finished my first one. It was always difficult and I never enjoyed it, but it was rewarding to finish.
After my senior volleyball season ended, I wanted a new focus. I took up running and ran my first 5k the following January. Fast-forward to today, almost two years later, and I’ve ran four 5k’s, one 10k, one obstacle run, and three half marathons. It’s still hard for me to fathom that 6 years ago I couldn’t run 1/4 of a mile and I can now finish 13.1 miles.
Running has truly changed the way that I think about myself. I have so much more confidence and motivation. I realize that I am strong and that I can do anything I want if I put my mind to it. I believe that part of the reason that I work so hard in other areas of my life (school and work) is running.
Although it’s ALWAYS a challenge for me, I am so thankful for running in my life. It pushes me in a way that I never thought possible.