Wednesday, 6 June 2012

How my love affair with running began

Happy National Running Day!

So as I sit here having run my first half marathon, having run my first race post-op, and on the brink of tackling the training for a full marathon - and I find myself deeply and whole-heartedly in love with running.

But you should know that this was not always the case.

Growing up, I remember dreading the cross country element in gym class. I couldn't run. And being forced to run around the track 10x was highest level of torture. My short little legs (which I should point out have not grown much since then) just could not keep up with everyone else. And my asthma left me wheezing in their dust. I was convinced by the age of 9 that running was just never going to be my thing.

Now don't get me wrong, despite being a horrible runner I was always fascinated by it. Seeing that lone woman out on the road before dawn with nothing but a pair of sneakers and sheer determination - to me was truly a beautiful thing. And despite loving the idea of that kind of dedication, I was still fairly convinced that lone woman would never be me.

Fast forward about 10 years, and there I was 50 lbs overweight with a robot heart, and I was even more convinced than ever that running was not going to work for me. I had started hitting the gym again, but shied away from the tredmill. The tredmill was reserved for runners (re: real atheletes) not genetically defective chubby girls like me. So I stuck to my ellipitcal routine for the first few months. I was comfortable. I was happy. And I was seeing results.

Then one holiday monday, the local gym threw a monkey wrench in my ellipitcal plan. The gym was closed! That meant no ellipitical and no workout. I didn't want to skip my workout, especially when I just started to build momentum. So I begrudgingly laced up my sneakers - after procrastinating for several hours - and then hit the streets. I did a short loop downtown, and didn't totally hate it.

When describing my run later that night over drinks with some friends, one of the girls (re: a real runner) informed me that I had actually conquered a fairly good distance, likely 4 km! What? Me?! This chubby cyborg just went out and ran 4 km willy-nilly!? I was stunned and officially hooked!

How far could I go if I really tried? How fast could I do that loop if I really pushed myself? Could I run serious distances if I wanted to? All these questions started swirling, and my love affair with running began.

Running has become so much for me over the years than just exercise and distance, and my reasons for running have evolved. But the moral of this story is; that running is for anyone. Because if a girl with a robot heart, no boobs, and stubby little Hungarian legs can run - than anyone can!

Are you lacing up your sneaks today?
Love your Favourite Darwinian Fail,