One thing I was most excited about when it came to quitting teaching was the opportunity it would give me to start running more, especially more in the mornings.
If you would have told me that fact six years ago, though, I would have laughed in your face and called you a liar-liar-pants-on-fire. You see, I’d DREAMED about being a runner for a long time–I dreamed about being one of those people who would just lace up her sneakers and go out in the drizzling rain for a six-mile run when she was upset, or the kind of person who would run along deserted trails on the weekends just to get a sense of conquering the mountain within (or something crazy like that)–but I’d never even come close to pursuing it because to me, runners seemed born, not made, and besides, running just seemed, well, hard.
The dream got worse when I saw a girl from my high school who seemed to be just that kind of runner–wiry and petite and caramel-skinned, I saw her running up and down all the streets near the high school, near the shopping square, along The Boulevard…everywhere I drove, there she was—Running (with a capital R).
And I envied her.
But because I was far too busy during high school to pick up one more thing (no, really, I was—ask anyone), I never got into running and brushed it off as one of those silly dreams that you dream sometimes, like how I used to want to be a famous landscape architect and design European gardens.
But then I got my first set of “real” running clothes from my new in-laws for Christmas the first year after we were married, and on a whim, I signed both Matt and I up for a marathon four months out from that date.
And while I’d like to tell you that it was all hunky-dory from the beginning and that I always knew that it was one of my Real Loves in life, that’s not *exactly* true. In fact, before I started marathon training, I positively DESPISED running, and it was just something I did at the gym first thing to “get it over with” until I could get to doing what I really wanted to do (which was lift weights with all the muscle heads). And once I did get into the whole marathon training plan, it only took until the second week in for me to think I’d possibly just made a very expensive mistake (since we’d already dropped the $200 to save our place in the race).
But now I’ve been running consistently for almost five years, and I can honestly say that I love it—maybe not every single second of it all the time, but I love running in general, and I hope to continue running until my body no longer lets me.
What tips do you have for enjoying running (or exercising in general) more?