Sunday, October 24, 2010

I can't imagine life without running

Women's marathon world record holder Paula Radcliffe said that, and up until 2 years ago (almost exactly - first long run was 5 miles on November 1, 2008), I wouldn't have believed it.
A friend of mine from high school contacted me this morning, and it had been a while. She was always the athlete (swimming, softball, lacrosse), so the fact that I am now a runner is quite the switcheroo. Sara couldn't believe how things had changed, and to a point, I can't either.
Within a relatively short period of time, running has become one of the most natural things to me. I ran 5 miles this morning, and it felt absolutely glorious. Ran about 7:42 pace - on an easy day. I just felt like I could just go with nothing stopping me, and decided to let it rip - why not? It wasn't exhausting, it was just fun, as running should be. It was a perfect release - the weather was perfect, I took to the hills with ease, and it was just joyful.
I feel very blessed that I have the ability to run. With a few exceptions, my body has been able to handle the mileage well. I am blessed that I have figured out how to manage my time in a a way that allows me to run almost every day. It has lifted my spirit in so many ways - I always come back from a run feeling better than when I left. I have been able to work through some major challenges during my runs. Whether alone or with a buddy, it is an enjoyable experience.
To some degree, I know I am preaching to the choir. We've all fallen in love with running, and gather together to share our love for it. But surely we all had a point in our lives where running was unnatural or absent. And now that it's here, we can't imagine life any other way.

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