Run like you're being chased
From couch potato to running bean
My first stumble into running was as an overweight 24-year-old. After years of eating entire tubs of Movenpick icecream, age and a meandering metabolism had caught up with me and my arse had crept around the edges of my office chair. Something needed to move - and that something was me.
I needed to expend more energy than I took in. I needed to lose weight. Groundbreaking really.
While I would like to say that I had an epiphany and running was just natural for me, I didn't and it wasn't. It down right hurt.
I started with running around the block. That was exhausting enough.
I took a break from running for a couple of years and buried myself in the gym. I would occasionally dip my toes with a jaunt around the streets - but I wasn't really into it.
Then it just crept up on me again. At 26, having lost a lot of the weight that was keeping me static, I tried running again and enjoyed it.
This is probably for various reasons - one being I didn't hurt my knees with the very thought of running any more (I was a lot lighter), and my legs were strong enough after a couple of years worth of squats and lunges that my muscles actually did something.
Oh, that and I am incredibly nosey and really love pounding the pavement peering into other people's windows. I will be honest - that was the main draw-card.
Running for me is a form of exercise that I can always fall back on. It is always there for me. I always have a good pair of runners in my wardrobe for when the moment strikes.
I did learn my lesson the hard way that good shoes maketh the runner. I have suffered through shin splints courtesy of an overzealous desire to run barefoot (albeit in Nike Frees).
Above all running is freedom. It frees my mind when I am stressed. It takes me away from situations when I need a break. It clears my head, settles my nerves and above all, it centers me.
Some people have yoga, some have religion, meditation, or some time consuming hobby. I have running. A slow often laborious jog that while unglamorous to watch, allows me complete and utter selfish 'me time' for an hour or so.
I have a good friend that says, "running is only for when you are being chased". Yeah, I can see that. But there is nothing better than coming back into work at lunchtime and saying "I just cracked a 60 minute 10km run".
As for motivation? Well if pretending you're being chased works for you - I suggest you go for gold.
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