Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Running for your life

I am a runner. I'm not a very good runner. I'm not a very fast runner. But I am a runner. I love to run. I started running during college. On one of my first attempts, I tripped over my own two feet and sprained my ankle. I was sort of proud of my "running injury". I bought a treadmill and ran in the privacy of my apartment until I felt I was "good enough" to run outside. When I ventured outside, I was relieved to discover no one was watching me run. And they weren't laughing at me. Other "runners" even gave me the runner's wave. I was part of the "club". My attempts at running in Charlottesville, Virginia were mixed. Some genius told me to "dive right in" and run during the mid-day heat and my body will adjust. I ended up on the side of the road light-headed and vomiting. When my sciatica flared up and I was sidelined, I missed running. So, I laced up my shoes and gave it a shot. Turns out, it helped alleviate the symptoms. I ran when I was pregnant until I got too big and clumsy. Now I look forward to my workouts. Not just for weight loss but because when I run I don't have to worry about anything else or focus on anything. I can hop on the treadmill and zone out. I'm not a wife or a mother. I am just a runner. I don't have to do anything or be anything. That time is just for me and about me. And when I am done, I have a real sense of accomplishment. I set a goal and 9 times out of 10, I accomplish it. It may be to run a little faster or further. And if I don't meet my goal, I can always try again. Running is my not-so-guilty pleasure/escape.

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