In the past, there have been times when I thought of myself as a runner. I don’t run fast, and usually, I have to drag my feet out the door for a long run, but, I also have had those moments when running is incredible – when there is nothing but the moment, and I feel alive and powerful. Running is also an important part of my weight loss story. Running was the first time in my life I was able to see food as fuel, and I stopped thinking of eating as a means to be skinny and started to thinking of eating as a way to fuel my body. The first time I ran a half marathon I was on top of the world. It gave me the confidence to believe that my body was capable of incredible things.
However, during the past year, running is something that has slowly faded from my life. Since I started law school, I haven’t had a lot of runs that are worthy of remembering fondly. Then, I injured myself in the Austin Half Marathon last year, and I stopped running almost all together for six months. Last Fall, I meekly attempted to train for the Seattle Half Marathon, but every single run was like pulling teeth. I never ended up running more than 6 miles, but running just wasn’t enjoyable for me anymore.
When I came to London, I had tentative plans to reintroduce running into my exercise routine. I thought registering for another race would help me get back into my running groove, so I convinced my friend to register to run the Edinburgh Half Marathon with me. Until today, I had yet to complete a training run. The race is seven weeks out, and I have just enough time to train sufficiently. I was dreading my run today, but I knew that I couldn’t put it off for another week. Plus, I coerced my friend from the U.S. to fly all the way across the Atlantic to run this half marathon with me, so I had good reason to get my ass in gear immediately.
But, thankfully, the run I had been avoiding with vengeance for weeks turned out to be pretty damn amazing. The weather was perfect. The park I ran in was beautiful. I had a delightful running buddy. Plus, there was some good duck watching along the way, and I love ducks – or at least taking pictures of them. Truth.
Although I hadn’t run more than a few miles for weeks, I felt strong when my Garmin hit four miles. My legs felt solid. My lungs felt alive. I didn’t want my run to end (I never say things like this). Considering that I though every step was going to be agonizing and unpleasant, the run couldn’t have gone better.
Today reminded me of what running means to me. I had forgotten how much I simply love to run. It was a wonderful reminder that taking a hiatus from something doesn’t mean it has to vanish from my life forever. Sometimes a break is exactly what I need to appreciate how much I actually enjoy running. And now, I have
seven six weeks to get ready for the Edinburgh Half Marathon, and I am legitimately looking forward to it. I am ready to welcome running back into my life with enthusiasm. Woo hoo!
P.S. Did I mention I registered for a marathon in October? I am putting faith in the fact that my rekindled feelings for running aren’t fleeting.