I Am Runner

Like many, I have a love/hate relationship with running. It’s more complicated than the old love when it’s over, hate to do it relationship we had in the past. Truth be told, I’ve always wanted to be a runner. Even in the days when I never thought I could run down the street never mind a mile, I always envied those who were “runners.”

Running for me isn’t always easy. There are days when I feel like I could go on for miles, then days when a jog around the block hurts. This week, I’ve experienced both situations. Saturday, in the pouring rain, I had the best run of this short spring season. Unable to fathom the treadmill, I threw my hat on and trekked outside, having the time of my life. Today, on this beautiful, sunny day, I felt like I was going to break apart with every step. The weather apparently has nothing to do with how well I run.

I’ve learned the hard way that a number of random factors affect my run. This can range from how much I eat, when I eat, and how my stomach handles what I’m eating. Hydration, per usual, is a must, but it is challenging to find the right amount that you’re body is spongy and energized, but not so much that you have to pee within the first five minutes and this dilemma distracts and plagues you the whole way through, preventing you from finding that groove. What exercise I’ve done the day before is often a factor, and perhaps the split squats I tried yesterday have to do with the tenderness of my thighs today (thanks bro). 

Sometimes, a good run just flows when emotions are high and positive and you’ve found the right mix of music (Hello The Climb). There are days when I know without a doubt that I can run up that long, looming big hill to get back to my house, and days when I need to walk it at a slow pace. Days when not even the catchiest of musicals, of which in my head I am always the star, can’t inspire me to love that I’m running. When a good story idea pops into my head and infiltrates every other sense so I go on auto drive as I flesh out ideas, are days when I know I have good mojo.

Regardless of the outcome, the distance, the timing of each mile, the feeling at the end of each run is the same: success. So even if there are days, like today, when in order to get myself outside, I need to say “just one mile,” then in order to keep going, find random landmarks to push past. Maybe it was the sun shining, the Frozen soundtrack blaring, or even the promise of the weekend approaching, but today, when every step was painful and somewhat slow and I was running for the end, I made it through five miles. 

Five ugly miles, but it was worth it. If only because I can.

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