I remember when I joined track back in high school hoping it would make me a runner and hating every second of it until I switched to pole vaulting. I don’t know what changed three summers ago when I started running before work every day around the lake, first three miles, then five. Even then though, I was only happy when I finished my runs.
This morning I woke my hungover and sore ass up at 9am and ran seven miles with snow coming down all around me (first LSD run for this half-marathon training plan), and managed to average under 9:00/mi with decreasing splits. Which is fantastic for me but the bigger deal is that I felt really good and happy the whole time I was running, not just after.
Even if I didn’t get a lot of sleep or I have a lot of work to do or my personal life is a little messy, there’s always a sidewalk or trail waiting for me to pound it out of my system with some fun music (this morning, The Kooks) and my ratty old sneakers. I don’t know when it happened but somewhere along the line running became one of my strongest joys in this world. Everything bad disappears and I feel strong and vital and high on endorphins and ready to kick ass for the rest of the day. Most importantly, it’s something I do entirely for myself, and that means so much to me.