When I was growing up, I hated running. I was not athletic. I hated gym. I spent most of my free time with my nose in a book.
In college I ran a little bit for exercise, but I didn’t like it. It was just a way to burn off those extra beer and pizza calories.
Fast forward about 25 years later. I’d started eating a vegan diet and I was feeling really, really good. I had more energy. I was sleeping like a baby. I had been walking almost daily for exercise, but I started getting the itch to run. Finally one day I was on a walk and I decided to start running. And I ran. For about 20 seconds. It was horrible. I was gasping for breath and I thought “What the hell was I thinking?” But I was determined and so I did some research and discovered the Couch to 5K program. About three months later, I ran my first 5K. I was hooked!
About four years later, I have run several 5Ks, several half-marathons, and in June of this year, I ran my first marathon.
I think what I like most about running is that every time you run, you set a personal goal, and when you meet that goal, you feel like you’ve accomplished something. It’s also the best way for me to stay in shape. Both physically and mentally, running has helped me be in the best shape that I’ve ever been in. I’m 49 years old, but I honestly feel like I’m 25. I’m also an introvert by nature, and so I like that running is something that I can do by myself. However, I also love the camaraderie you share with other runners during races. You feel part of a huge community of people who share a common passion for running, which I really love.
I love collecting the bibs; I love seeing my racing time get better with each race. Most of all, I love the photos. In the photos, I’m so happy and proud of myself. And I swear I’m glowing just a bit.