As someone who has been running for many years now, I often get the question: Why do you RUN?
I’ve thought about this quite a number of times, and while it all boils down to my true joy of running; running itself has meant many different things to me over the years. In some ways, the reason I’ve run has changed depending on what was going on in my life and that still rings true today. To answer that question, I guess I have to truly go back to different times throughout the past 10 years.
I start with college because I never ran a step before that day. I met my boyfriend (now husband) as a freshman in college. After he stepped back from soccer to pursue medical school he took up running. Most of the time I just watched him in awe and was amazed by his talent, but eventually the bug caught me and I started running.
Most of college running was never really about me. I did it because it looked interesting, I want to be able to relate to Wes on that level, and it kept me semi-in shape during those late night fast food eating days.
My reason to run: for my boyfriend and weight
2 Years Post-College
Running was never consistent in college, but after graduation it began to become more of a passion for me and even though I still wasn’t setting any records I became more involved. I also ran my first half marathon during this time and to me that was huge.
I stopped running for Wes during this time and did it more to help relieve stress from my job, studying for licensing exams, and the whole process of Wes getting into medical school. I really didn’t do any speed workouts or anything, I just simply ran to run.
The reason I ran: stress relief
Once my husband got into medical school and we had moved 10 hours away, I started using running as more of an escape. We went through a lot in those 4 years both mentally and physically and it was a tough time. Running gave me something to channel my emotions through and it also helped me deal with being so very far away from our family and friends. Using it to escape emotions sometimes worked against me and led me to femoral stress fracture, but it was still the way I coped with a lot of it.
This was also the time (near the end of the 4 years) that I first started to realize that I really could set bigger goals for myself. I started gaining some confidence that maybe one day I could be a faster runner. I started the process but I didn’t really commit to until after we moved.
My reason for running: channel emotions and to work towards goals
The past 2 years
The past two years have been the healthiest years with my running. When we moved out of Pennsylvania I was able to leave a lot of garbage behind that was weighing me down. We were able to settle down and settle into our lives here quickly, and I began to really work towards my big goals.
In those two years I qualified for Boston twice, which I used to think was my lifelong dream. I began to think further in the future and realize that if I work hard and really dedicate myself I can set big dreams and goals.
Running has become a passion and something that I can’t imagine not having as part of my life. Sure there are days that I don’t want to get out the door, but it never changes the fact that it still makes my day infinitely better!
My reason for running: because I love it and to chase after my dreams
The final stage so far in my running journey has been running during this pregnancy. I still have 19 weeks to go, so there is so much that can change but my mindset has really changed. I’ve switched my workouts for slow miles pretty much every day. Some days are really hard and I want to quit, but I know my body is strong and healthy.
My running is now based more around listening to my body and what it can handle that day. I don’t push it and I’m okay with that. I’m keeping my body strong and healthy for this precious baby boy.
My reason for running: to be a strong, healthy, and fit momma for my sweet boy!
We all start running for various reasons. In the beginning, mine was about weight and because Wes was into it. It isn’t the best reasons to run but it got me into something I would have probably never done without it. However; over the years through ups and downs it has grown into a love not because it’s become easier but because I am amazed at what my body is capable of.
Now I want to ask you!
Why do YOU run?