I was reading another runners post about why she runs, which naturally got me thinking why I run?
I started running in 8th grade, middle school cross country. I signed up because my sister is a phenomenal runner and I looked up to her. I still do, she is amazing. And to Amy and Erin, just in case they read this and get mad! I was one of the consistently scoring girls, but I was 14 and in middle school. I attempted high school but I could not keep up with the runners. In track, I was on the "Slow Distance" team. We had fun, but we were no good. I quickly became more musical and focused on band. Which, is good, since I am a band director now!
When I got to Otterbein College, I tried to pound out college stress my freshmen year on the flat sidewalks of Columbus, Ohio. I couldn't find my groove. I started gymming, and going to the elliptical with room mates, rather than run. My junior year, May 2009, a catastrophic event occurred. My college boyfriend of 3 years pulled the plug after watching The Hills with me. Now, at this time, I was training for the Pittsburgh Marathon Relay. I was Leg 3-6.4 miles. I was proud that I could run this many miles! The most I ran was 7, and I thought I was awesome. But the break up caused me to refocus my life.
It took a few weeks after the race for me to recover from the breakup. That is such a lie-it took months. But my running took a hit. I couldn't run more than 4 miles without breaking down and crying. I would run by his apartment, in the hopes he would see me. I was a pathetic mess. But I moved home for the summer and being in another state made life a little better to handle.
I signed up for my first half marathon that summer. I was addicted to racing, but terrible at training. The marathon relay went off without a hitch and I LOVED it, which is what caused me to continue running. The breakup only motivated me further. Instead of spending hours with my boyfriend, I spent hours with my running shoes.
I completed my first half on October 18, 2009 in Columbus, Ohio. I was student teaching and managed to train and go on a few blind dates. I was always so focused on my running. Only drinking one night a week, going to sleep early, never saying yes to plans that would keep me out past 10, except on Saturdays, after my long runs.
This wasn't the lifestyle for me, though, because in January, I signed up for the Pittsburgh Marathon. It was my senior year, I was single and ready to date again, or so I thought. I met an OSU boy, bound to ruin my life from the start, and I started training. I trained too hard and too early, because I injured my IT band. I met another guy after the OSU boy, who I am currently dating. My 2nd half went well, except for the weather.
Now, I live in Wisconsin and have found training to be a struggle again. I found an awesome running partner and I followed a RunnersWorld plan-10 weeks, 4 days running. I mixed running with spin and zumba. I finished the Wisconsin half with a PR.
Why do I run? To refocus my life. Anytime a life changing event occurs, I find that running is the rock that holds me together. As I have "the talk" with Dave tonight, I must keep my running mantra in the back of my mind: "You are stronger than you think you are."