WHY do I run?
What a great question! When my friend Julia asked me if I was interested in writing something for her blog, I said sure, this is an easy answer! 3 days later I’m still thinking about this. Haha! It’s not an “easy” answer, but one that has evolved over time.
3 years and 65 lbs ago, I found myself in a gym with a good friend of mine who was trying to get back in shape. He had hired a trainer and was looking for someone to work out with him. I had been inactive for a very LONG time so I said what the heck. The trainer we had soon became a good friend and was responsible for kick starting the complete turnaround in my life over the last 3 years. So I had worked out with her and my friend for about 3-4 months when she challenged me to run a 5K. She was an avid runner who was constantly pushing and encouraging me to try new things. This is where I learned about “getting outside your comfort zone”. I followed an 8 week plan, ran by myself, and entered my first 5k race in September of that year. Although it was a really good experience, I wasn’t so sure I was into this “running thing”. Lol! Anyhow, I entered several more 5Ks over the next few months, swearing to myself I would NEVER run a 10K, much less a Half Marathon, and God forbid a Full Marathon. Those folks were crazy! Well, I did finally run that first 10K 8 months after my first 5K. Something started to change in me. Was I starting to actually enjoy running? Nah. Couldn’t be. Ha! Little did I know. Soon I met my first “running group”, just a few people that enjoyed running in the mornings. One lady had actually run a Half Marathon and I soon had my first running partner. And sure enough, soon after we met, I had signed up for my first Half Marathon, the 2012 Montgomery Half. We weren’t even half way through our training plan when the idea was being thrown around to run a full marathon the following spring. I signed up for the 2013 New Orleans Rock and Roll Marathon before I had even run my first Half! It was official: I had lost my mind! Lol! No, I had become a runner.
Since that time 3 years ago, I have run many Half Marathons and 2 Full Marathons. I am now entering the world of triathlon and have several races lined up this year. I will also run at least 2 Halfs and then the Rocket City Marathon in December. But I think the single most thing I am proud of was starting Prattville Running Club last year. It is only a Facebook page right now, but it was a way of getting local runners together, meeting new people, and connecting runners who might be looking for a group or a running partner. With the Running Club, I have also held 3 C25K programs in the past 9 months and I have seen so many of them catch the “running bug”. I even had the pleasure of running a 5K with both my daughters last year who participated in my first C25K program. Now THAT was something special!
So, WHY do I run?
I run for my health. I run because I enjoy it. I run for goals and challenges I set for myself.
But the single most important reason I run today is for the fellowship.
I enjoy bringing new people into our group, especially the “newbies”. I want them to feel and understand what I felt when I ran my first 5k. What I felt when I set a goal, trained, and ran my first Half Marathon. What I feel today when I introduce someone to running. What it feels like to meet SO many new people, new friends, new “family”.
To share my experiences. To share my passion for running.
I get more enjoyment today watching and encouraging others to set and reach their own goals.
It’s not about me anymore. I have set and reached almost all my goals.
That’s WHY I run today.To find more inspiring reasons “WHY I RUN”, like Richard’s, click here.
Why do you run? Why did you start? Why do you love it? I find the greatest inspiration in the stories of other runners, don’t you? I would love to hear about you! If you would be willing to share your “WHY”, please send your submission, including at least your first name and last initial to firstname.lastname@example.org . Be sure to attach a picture(more than one if you’d like)! Also, feel free to let me know about your blog and/or website if you’d like for me to include a link to it. Thank you for sharing! Thank you for inspiring! ~Julia
As I was catching up with an old friend this morning, she asked me, “Why exactly do you run? You actually LIKE torturing yourself and losing toe nails, lol?”
It occurred to me that I hadn’t examined myself enough to know my own reasoning… But as I tried to explain the happiness that it brings me, I also discovered my reasons… I run for selfish reasons and some, not so selfish. I run for my sanity. Running makes me a better person, but most important to me, it makes me a better mom. I run for my health. I run so I can hopefully be around long enough to watch my babies and their babies grow up. But on mornings like these, when it’s bitter cold, or those mornings when I’m just plain exhausted or simply don’t feel like it, those reasons aren’t enough to still make me lace up my sneakers and go “torture myself”. That’s when the REAL reasons as to why I run become apparent. I run for my girls. I run to show them discipline, and what it means to be devoted to and dedicated to something. I run to show them that they can achieve absolutely anything that they put their minds to, no matter how crazy that people think they may be for chasing big dreams. I run to show them that no matter what is going on in their lives, that they can have total control over themselves and their personal happiness. I run to show them that when love is involved anything is possible. I run for them.
I run for my Lexi Faye & Layla Mae.
That is why I run.
To find more inspiring reasons “WHY I RUN”, like Sachea’s, click here.________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Why do you run? Why did you start? Why do you love it? I find the greatest inspiration in the stories of other runners, don’t you? I would love to hear about you! If you would be willing to share your “WHY”, please send your submission, including at least your first name and last initial to email@example.com . Be sure to attach a picture(more than one if you’d like)! Also, feel free to let me know about your blog and/or website if you’d like for me to include a link to it. Thank you for sharing! Thank you for inspiring! ~Julia
I’d love to share your running story on my blog. What’s your “WHY?”
The thought that is foremost on my mind when I run is, “WHY?”
Why do I run…why do you run?
If I were to have an obsession about running…the “WHY’s” have it!
I mean, there are thousands and thousands of people doing this same thing every day…why would they do that? What moves you? Just what IS a big enough reason to keep you going through the cold, rain, hills, heat, miles, dark, sun, pain? Why? Why? WHY? 🙂
Your “why’s” inspire me & I know I’m not the only one that feels this way!
Since I can’t seem to get away from this thought…I’ve decided to just “go with it”.
I’m devoting a portion of my blog to inspiring each other through sharing our stories.
Why do you run? Why did you start? Why do you love it? What’s on your heart to share…I want to know!
If you’d like to help rest my mind(please, please, please 🙂 ), submit your story along with at least your first name and last initial to firstname.lastname@example.org be sure to include a picture(more than one if you’d like)! Also, feel free to let me know about your blog and/or website if you’d like for me to include a link to it.
Thank you for sharing! Thank you for inspiring!
I knew I was going to like this woman before we even met!
I mean she has such a lovely name and all.
We share the same name, Julia, and dubbed ourselves
However, I am kind of fond of the updated name that her husband gave us of….
We started training together this year before her first half marathon. She’s my weekend, long run buddy. I was there when she hurt her leg before her half, and I’ve watched her rest, ice, go to PT, run through the pain, try out her options, finish her 1st half, be frustrated…the whole time doing everything right & by the book. We’ve now spent the last few months(in this winter’s crazy mix of weather) training for the Mercedes…her second Half Marathon & my second Full. We’ve discussed running, diet, exercise, life, kids, beliefs, pretty much everything you can think of. She has become a dear friend.
I’m not typically the kind that has a lot of “girl friends”…but on race day I felt very much “girly” and full of emotions. I had Julia call me at 4am to make sure I woke up. I think that would be one of the worst feelings ever…to complete all that training and then sleep through the whole marathon! We texted all morning, and then the last contact we had was…”I’m going to the bathroom in the Boutwell.” I didn’t have room for my phone AND food for the race, so I didn’t have any way to call Julia…I just assumed it would be easy to find her by the bathroom. WRONG.
Long story short…
Tip for next race: use the porta-potties outside, not the bathrooms with the 15 minute wait inside the building. AND meet your running friends somewhere away from the crowds of 5,000+ people.
I was so disappointed to think that after all those miles of training, we wouldn’t be able to run this race together. I headed to the sign that was around the pace we had decided we wanted to run. Just before start time, I heard her call my name! I was overly excited(for me) and we gave each other a big hug and joined the throng of runners.
I LOVED sharing this experience with Julia. I was excited for her to be part of something that I had only told her about before. The excitement of the crowds, the gummy bears, the music, the signs, the 1st place winner lapping us with the police escort and all….those were all things I had wanted to share with her. I was concerned for her when she started experiencing pain at mile 4…but she kept going, like a trooper. Then all of a sudden the course split. Half-marathoners to the left, full marathoners to the right. I knew it was going to happen, I just thought it was later in the race. Once again…I was surprised by the emotions that I felt. I wasn’t expecting to feel sad to leave her. We quickly gave a teary(for me) hug and went on our way. Knowing that she was in pain I was concerned for her. I was also disappointed for her because I thought there was no way she could catch up to her goal time of 2:30.
But, I was wrong. Here is a picture that I stole off of her FB page. 🙂
Even in her pain, she missed her goal by only 1 minute!
I was SO surprised…and I’m very proud of her accomplishment!
Just look at that beautiful smile!
…and even though I missed my goal by almost 30 minutes…
I’d say she was pretty proud of me that day too ❤
That’s her with her hands up, cheering me on towards the finish line. (I’m the pink, black and white blur in the back there.)
We all need a few crazy friends who are willing to run the extra mile…or 12 with us.
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again:
“Runners are some of the best kinds of people that I know.”
Thank you Julia Cantley!
It was a blast ❤
The Mercedes Marathon in Birmingham, AL is just two days away!!! I’m just a little bit excited. 🙂
It seems that in all my accolades of Thanks earlier today (which you can read here)…I neglected to thank my biggest fan. My husband, Matt.
Some of their response included: commitment, compromise, teamwork, living for the other, hard work, warped, “It’s what YOU make it.”, Loving someone even when you don’t feel in love all the time, they laugh together they cry together but at the end of the day it still = one Big <3, Committed regardless of how you feel because the two have become one, Enduring commitment to God with one’s spouse. Daily choices to love.”
My theory was that no one would use the word “fun” to describe marriage. Some came pretty close! Just as in running, a “fun” run is often used to describe a 1 mile run. The marathon, on the other hand has a different purpose. It is 26.2 miles. A commitment. A challenge. Seems impossible…and even “warped” at times. You choose to run, even on the days that you don’t feel like it. Most of their responses could be applied to training for and completing a marathon. It is a rewarding & life altering experience….and in retrospect, some might even call it “fun” as well. Training for the Marathon always reminds me of marriage…
Matt’s not a big fan of social networking & blogging, so I try to leave him out of it for the most part. But, sometimes I just can’t help it. Training for a marathon with my husband, just makes me love him all the more. His commitment through the miles is a picture of his commitment to me & our family. He keeps me going through the miles on the road and in my life. He watches out for me, encourages me, keeps me focused…and he’s even nice to look at along the way. Thankful isn’t even a strong enough word for how I feel about him.
~Matt’s #1 fan~
Did I mention that the Mercedes Marathon is just two days away!?!
Last long run…finished.
Last short run….finished.
New songs loaded on my ipod….check!
Laying out clothes for Sunday’s marathon & packing bag for after the race…in progress.
I just had to stop and take a minute to say Thanks.
Thank you to the Lord…the giver of Life. The one who fills us with His power and strength. It is only because of Him that we live, move and have our being.
Thank you to my friends and family. Who show interest and listen to all my running jibber jabber…just because they love me. They are such an encouragement.
Thank you to my fellow runners. Our running group, Chilton Runners, has been such a big help. They “like” my statuses. They post their latest runs, which inspires me to get back out there. They expect me to be meet them for our cold, dark, 5:15am runs…so I do. We spend hours together chit chatting during our Saturday long runs, which has made this year’s training much easier! Sometimes they run slower to be by my side, or maybe just run circles around me….it’s a No runner left behind! kind of thing. 🙂 They share their tips, gu-gel, stories, and even left me a nice prize one day! Some of them have become dear friends.
Thank you to you, my blog readers. My outlet. I’ve learned so much from my fellow bloggers as well!
…and last but NOT LEAST! Thank you to my girls! They have made sacrifices that haven’t gone unnoticed…and I appreciate them very much. They’ve changed their plans so they could babysit for me during my long run. They’ve waited to take showers, so I could have hot water after a freezing run. Their support is not required, but is freely given…and that means so much to this momma.
So now…I will get back to work & preparing for Sunday.
I already feel like a winner…and it’s not even race day yet. ❤
~That first step out the door, when you look up and drink in the thousands of stars that light up the pre-dawn sky…there’s nothing like it!
~ The freedom that you feel during a warm, rainy, summertime race shared with a few hundred fellow runners….there’s nothing like it!
~ Running through a random sprinkler, the scent of a wild rosebush or maybe even a muscadine vine as you happen to pass by, having a (short) staring contest with a cow chewing it’s cud….there’s nothing like it!
~ The frost covered field that makes you cold just thinking about it, the burst of color as the trees turn to a bright gold, orange or red, the steady crunch of leaves under your new running shoes, the happy leaves that fall from the sky with each gust of wind….
Running in the Fall….
THERE’S REALLY NOTHING LIKE THAT!!!
The Fall Season’s not even completely over yet…
…but I already miss it.