Just RUN.

Dear Running,

really wish I liked you more. There is often this prospect of a beautiful autumn run through the Boston scenery, but then you get trumped by the prospect of doing burpees at the park among the same Boston scenery. That is all.

Call me another day,

Alison

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That sad love note right there basically sums up my relationship with running. Burpees > running. This article from Livestrong says so. 😉

Something weird happened yesterday though: I had a strong desire to run. Granted, I still did not run yesterday, but that is solely because my whole body was pretty sore from my Monday and Tuesday workouts, so rest day it was!

Nevertheless, a “strong desire to run” is one of the last things that happens in Alison’s world, folks. I mean, occasionally I will say “I wish I could just run right now,” but that’s usually because my legs are numbing as I sit in class for four hours straight. Then the wish goes away as soon as I get up and start walking. However, my desire to run yesterday was quite different in that I was genuinely excited at the prospect of a long run by the Charles River, and I was excited about it all day.

Wut iz dis?

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Let me start by saying that I am truly in awe of runners. I see running as such an unfortunate way of exercising (for myself) that I give them major props in my head whenever I see them running around campus. It doesn’t matter whether they are running with the fast-as-lightning cross country club or if they are running at a 12-minute-mile pace— I literally say in my head: “Oooo kill ’em!” as a cheer for them (NOT because I want to kill them). I think to myself that I’m not dedicated enough to do what they’re doing.

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Hold up. I’m not dedicated enough? 

What about other fitness goals I’ve accomplished? Yoga poses, 100 burpees, pistol squats, a pull-up… I never found those to be easy feats, but I worked hard and long at them, and I was able to improve. Most importantly, I came to truly enjoy those things because I gave them a chance. I even know that I’ve been able to cut down my mile time significantly by just practicing running for a couple of weeks, and I’m not too shabby at that phys ed pacer test.

Still, I’ve never truly given running a chance. But why not? Why have I been enthusiastic about so many other forms of fitness except running?

Well, here are some of the reasons:

1) I say “I hate running” to everyone, including myself, when I’m thinking about running or when I’m actually running.

➔ Negativity.

➔ Exhibit A: I would watch these two wonder women do all kinds of plyo pushups and cool squat jumps and think, I can totally work towards that! Then I would watch them sprinting around a track and think, Oof, can’t do that. 

2) Long periods of cardio don’t interest me.

➔ Maybe I can make it interesting with intervals.

3) I compare myself to others who are often much farther into their running journeys than I am.

➔ Comparison…that pesky son of a gun.

4) I don’t think going out for a run is worth it if I’m “not going fast enough.”

➔ Fast enough? What?

➔ Fear of failure is holding me back.

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The theme of all these reasons is that I don’t believe that I can run, and I let that interfere with what could possibly be a fondness for running. Now, I’m not saying that I will somehow fall in love with running as soon as I get out of my head, because maybe it really is not for me. I am saying that I’m willing to give it a chance by pushing my pride aside (as always) and just moving “one foot in front of the other.”

Tina’s recent post (which was a major inspiration for my desire to run yesterday) included a part about how she just wanted to run for 70 minutes. She didn’t care if she had to stop and walk, but she just wanted to cover ground and run as best as she could.

After reading that I realized that there are some ways in which I could perhaps make myself enjoy running:

  • Run for a set period of time. 20, 30, 60 minutes, whatever. Just run, even if I’m just shuffling along at some points.
  • Incorporate intervals. Run at a moderate pace for 10 minutes, then at a challenging pace for 2 minutes. As time goes on, the relative speed of each pace might increase.
  • Don’t run on a treadmill. Just…nah. Not when I want to try to enjoy running.
  • Put on some good tunes. I don’t have a running playlist, but I should make one!
  • Don’t worry about the pace. I usually put too much pressure on myself to hit a certain pace, which results in disappointment if that pace doesn’t happen. If I run as best as I can, that should be all that matters.

You might be thinking, glad you’re finally enlightened on the obvious, Alison!  Yeah, I know. I read “How to Start Loving Running” articles all the time, but for some reason I only just had the lightbulb turn on, and now I’m kinda stoked to see how my running journey unfolds. I’ve got plenty of run-lovin’ blog friends out there, so I know who to hit up 😉

(Burpees will always have my heart though. ♥)

I may or may not go for a run today, but I do know that I will go for a run sometime this week! {Edited to add in the morning: I’m up early for a run! I seriously could barely sleep last night because I was so excited. WHO AM I?!}

Thinking-Out-Loud

Linking up with Spoons!

So tell me:

Are you a fan of running?

If yes: have you always loved it?

If no: why not?

Share any thoughts on running!