The Relaxed Runner

Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about this thing called “running”. It’s like a lot of things…it means different things to different people (bet that was a shocker…). I’m full of amazing facts…just ask my husband.

In the almost 40 years that I have been alive I’ve learned a couple of things (yes, literally 2 things): 1. Chocolate should be eaten at least once (okay, maybe 5 times) a day; and 2. You can’t live by someone else’s standards. Both of these are EXTREMELY important.

I can’t take someone’s idea of what a runner is and try to shape myself into it. I have to look inside of myself, and find out what it is that I want to accomplish out of this thing called “a running lifestyle”. For some it is pushing their bodies to the ultimate limits, and sometimes beyond those limits (kind like me with pantyhose). For others it’s racing in marathons and half marathons and 10ks and 5ks, competing against those in their age category to be the best. Then for some it’s being able to run without stopping to walk for whatever distance they’ve chosen. And all of these are great definitions of running (I honestly mean that, totally non-sarcastically… I REALLY DO). But they aren’t MY definition.

Here is mine. I’m calling myself a  “Relaxed Runner” .  I run for enjoyment, relaxation and health. I run to have some alone time. I don’t run to break records. I don’t run to be faster than others. I run with walk intervals. I run slow on some days, and what I would call fast on others (okay, let’s face it, by fast I mean a little faster than slow). I run because I want to eat brownies. I run because it’s fun. I have no desire to run 26.1 miles. I have no desire to push my body to its utter limits. I do have the desire to do the best I can with each run, but I don’t want to give running the dedication it would take to achieve what others would perceive as “greatness”. And I am very okay with that. I still read Runner’s World magazine, and read a lot of awesome blogs by a lot of awesome runners. But I’m ME, and always will be. This is what makes my running personal and meaningful. I believe it will also be what KEEPS me running. Because in the end, my goal is to keep running… for as long as I can (age wise, not like the Energizer Bunny).

I can honestly say I’ve been bitten by the running bug.

So, as you think about your running, parenting, job, life (whatever) really consider if you are doing it by YOUR standards or someone else’s. I encourage you to know why you do what you do… to OWN it and be YOU.

On a totally unrelated matter, I ordered some compression sleeves today. I’m hoping that on long runs they will help my legs out a little. I’ve read great things about them and will let you know how it goes!

Be YOU today!

Don’t get me wrong… I admire those people who do push themselves. I think it’s great (if not a little nuts) that they have the energy, desire and determination to do that.

UPDATE:

I will be trying the GU on my 6 mile run TOMORROW. We celebrate a friends birthday last night… I had too much good Mexican food, played a great game and stayed up to0 late (yes, it’s sad when 10:30 is too late). So I will be doing that run on Sunday.

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7 responses »

  1. I absolutely love what you said about running. I am not a runner… Nor do I plan on becoming one(although I walked 6 milestoday!) but I live my life the way you talk about running….you might say it’s laid back living. I am not trying to impress anyone or race and win, just want to finish and know that I have done me best. Hopefully I will hear well done my good and faithful servant! Love hearing your running stories…. Keep it up… Great job!

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