I ran my first mile in middle school. I hated running every second of that mile. The only redeeming quality was that the route took us off of the school grounds for a minute which was, like, so cool.
We ran it once a week, I think. Even though I still didn’t like to run, my personality was such that I had to try. A teacher told me to do it after all and it was important to listen to teachers. I know, I was a full on geek. But it turned out I was pretty good runner.
When I was a freshman in high school I had P.E. for first period. I met my first high school friends in that class (I had changed school districts over the summer, so didn’t know anybody). The school used the showers in the locker room for storage, and there wasn’t enough time to change, workout, shower and get to my next class anyway. So I had the choice to either: try to work hard and spend the rest of the day stinky, or not try and get a mediocre grade (see above where I was a total dork so this was a terrible choice). Together with my new friends, we went the try, but not too hard, route. When we had to get in the pool (at 7am in October!), we all pretended to be bad swimmers so we could stay in the shallow end. Stuff like that.
Well by spring semester I had had enough. I wanted P.E. as the last period of the day so I could actually work, then go home and shower. But, alas, only students who belonged to a sports team had gym at the end of the day.
Light bulb! I could join a sport! Oh wait, I don’t play any sports. But no matter, I’d find one that fit me. My complete inability to hit any round object with accuracy meant most sports were out, but I was pretty darn good at putting one foot in front of the other quickly. So track team it was!
I kept at sports throughout high school, becoming one of the best junior varsity runners. I was never quite good enough for varsity but it didn’t bother me. I had surpassed my own expectations and was officially a Runner.
So I kept running after high school, and while I was in the military. I joined running clubs, and I ran a half marathon in 2009.
The point of all of what I’m saying is this: I never appreciated being a runner until I got pregnant and couldn’t run anymore. I always dreaded going out for a run, hated being out of breath, and counted the steps until I was DONE because running sucks!! But I kept at it because it was my job, or I had an obligation, or I didn’t want to stop eating whatever I wanted whenever I wanted.
Even though it’s a little harder to plan a run now that Adam is in the mix, I still go out occasionally. And I love it! Last weekend was my first 5K since I gave birth. Mike and I left Adam with his parents and made a day of it.
It was AMAZING. I felt so free! So light. So appreciative of the ability to bounce back after baby.
And I surpassed my expectations again.
Oh yeah! And you know what? It wasn’t even in an old-lady-30-and-over category. It was 34 and under. Yay!