I can’t remember a time when I didn’t run. Varsity track gave me the coveted high school letter. In college, I’d head out to the nearby lake and run the 5 mile track around it.
I’ve run on the treadmill, down country roads rarely travelled by cars, along busy urban sidewalks, across paved park pathways and up trails.
I’ve run in the early morning as the sun was waking up and in the pitch black dark with a headlamp showing me the way.
I’ve run during a frigid Wisconsin winter night and through a scalding South Carolina summer day.
I’ve run with family, friends, my dog and alone.
I’ve run listening to music, podcasts and my own breathing.
I’ve run following couch to marathon plans, interval apps, my own make shift schedule and with no plan or goal at all.
I’ve worn high tech clothes and cute accessories only to be worn while running.
I’ve run four half marathons all in the 2:21-2:23 time frame and just for fun.
And through it all I can honestly say….
….that I stink at running.
It isn’t really the physical part that gets me. I’m no Olympic level runner and I tend to trudge more than fly, but my times are at least respectable and I run way more than I walk.
It is the mental game that kills me. I never zone out. I never enjoy it. I’m trudging along and all my mind does is go on and on about how I can’t breathe, how I can’t take another step, how I’m too slow. It is defeatist and it doesn’t matter if I run a mile or 5. It is the same rhetoric in my brain.
So I am taking a break. I run for exercise and health. Riding is my stress relief. I’m joining the local YMCA and I am going to dabble in the various classes that they offer: spin to yoga to cardio dance to weights to swimming. I’m going to bounce around until I find something that I can do and mostly enjoy.
Then, once I am in better shape, I am going to try running again. See if it doesn’t fit back in in a healthier manner. We will see.
6 thoughts on “Hanging Up the Running Shoes.”
Do what you love. If you’ve never truly enjoyed it, good for you to tough it out so long! I am sure there is something out there or in the gym you will enjoy. I have never come into a love of running, which is why I swim. I love it. It never feels like exercise. Plus I can pretend I’m a dolphin.
That is the feeling I want…well maybe not the dolphin…but not feeling like it is work. I’m hoping my adventures in fitness results in something sticking.
I only tried running for a brief while in 2010, but this is how I felt about it too. It’s also how I feel about spinning. I do it because I’m fat and I need to work on it, but I never get to a point where I enjoy it. I do wish I had a way of swimming for exercise without it being either super inconvenient or pricey.
Swimming is great but yeah it requires a pool. I’m hoping to find something at the local Y that I like.
The college I went to allows alumni to swim there at a discount, but it’s about half an hour from us, so I’m not likely to ever actually get out there, even if I buy a membership. We’re pretty isolated and there aren’t too many other options. The nearest Y is half an hour the other way, and is super expensive. We can swim at Round Valley for free, but not in the winter.
In s school was we had the ability to use the pool at the therapy place next door. I’d go do laps during long breaks between classes. I loved it. Dusty and I always talk about where we really want to live. Being out in the country where it is peaceful and quiet is our dream. But living close to things just makes life easier especially with Wyatt and all his things.