Running. Feelings of love and endearment for some, feelings of hatred and pain for many! Why do YOU run? Because you love it? Or do you loathe it? Do you do it because you feel like you have to? Does it make your knees hurt? What about your hips? If you run, why? If you don’t run, why not?
Story time. I am a tall girl with hips, and I was a collegiate shot putter. When my career was over, I turned to what seemed to be the thing to do…. road races. My first one? A full marathon. What was I thinking?! Go big or go home, right? So away I went on a 6 month training schedule. I was never taught appropriate running form, I didn’t get fit for decent running shoes, just threw on some headphones and away I went. Before long, my IT Band started flaring up and I lost all of my toenails. What was I getting myself into!? I made a commitment, I signed up for the race and I was going to do it! The day came and the race was here: Rock and Roll San Diego, June 2003! A really cool sight, seeing 20,000+ people in the streets of the city. It was definitely an experience of a lifetime. And just that…. ONCE in a lifetime!
I went on to “run” (more like race-walk) several half marathons, 10ks and 5ks. It was what I thought that I needed to do to stay active and healthy. Maybe even get the body that I wanted. What I quickly realized was that it just caused my body a lot of pain! And although race days were a lot of fun, I did not at all enjoy training!
Flash forward a few years. My running days have been over for quite some time now. Strength training became the core of my workouts and I despise running (actually most traditional “cardio” in general!) When I meet people who run I often ask “Why?” Why do YOU run?
If your answer is because you love it, it is your release and your moment to get away from the world and think, and you are one of the lucky ones that has a body built to run, then by all means…. do what you LOVE! Keep at it! Enjoy and run a few extra miles for me!
If your answer is because you were told that it was the thing to do to either lose weight, get “toned” or even because you are like me and think it is your only option…. stop! You do NOT have to run for any of those reasons. Especially if it is always causing you pain and injury. It’s just not worth it.
Do things that you love. Stop things that you do not! Life is way too short to spend any amount of time doing something that makes you miserable! You absolutely need to be active to be healthy and feel good! Get creative and find new ways to move your body, challenge yourself and throw in some heavy lifting sessions for good measure. :)