This is a question that I am asked ALL THE TIME. Unless you are a runner, you may never understand why I, or any runner does. It’s personal. We all run for our own reasons! Someone can’t MAKE you run, once you find your WHY, the rest is up to you!
My Running History
For me, running was something I turned to later in life. Back in high school, I did anything that I could to run the shortest distances possible. I played basketball – short bursts up and down the court. I played volleyball – we were confined to the boundaries of the court and didn’t really run much at all. I ran track – the 100m hurdles and field events. Yup. If it was running far, I didn’t want anything to do with it.
Over the last few years, that changed. It didn’t start that way, but running has become a central part of who I am! I completed my 1st 5k with my son about 10 years ago on Thanksgiving Day. It was cold and it was wet, but we didn’t care. I made me realize that I could do this and signed up for a few more 5k’s that following year. Then I got the bug to try something longer. 10k – DONE! Then when I crossed that finish line after walking my 1st half marathon, the window of possibility opened. 6 years and 27 half marathons later, the challenges keep growing!
It’s wherever you are! You can run virtually anywhere! Just need to grab that trusted pair of shoes and go! No need to worry about anything else. You can run outside, inside, on the treadmill (aka the Dreadmill), on the trail, you name it, you can run there! Yes, some places are better than others, but you really wont’ know for sure until you go!
New Friends! and let’s be honest, we all like making new friends! I honestly have lost track of how many friends I have made because of running! Since I run most of my races solo (most of my running friends move at different paces), I have met so many people, who I now can say are good friends, while out on the race course! Friends that I would have never met if it was not for running!
From the moment you meet someone at a race or on a run, you know that you share that common bond and it grows from there! Which helps lead to the next point…
Oh the places I can see! Running can give you the opportunity to see some places that you may otherwise have missed! Coming together with running friends to do some traveling to new cities, new areas, new trails. Whether its traveling to a new city specifically for a race or just going on vacation and taking a self guided running tour of the city, what better way to explore the country than to do it on your own two feet?!?!
It can be done solo, or with friends Sometimes you need that extra support, or camaraderie of the crew to get in the miles. Other days it all about the solidarity. You choose!
It’s all about the fun! You can get wild and crazy! It’s not just going out there and running! Sometimes it’s about spending time with friends getting covered in paint, mud, bubbles, or everything in between!
Setting Goals and Personal satisfaction of pushing yourself to do things that you many have never thought possible. You are the one that has to do the work in order to enjoy the benefits. No one else can do that for you. Some runs are easier than others. But many times, it is those tough runs that help make us really appreciate the good runs and the race day successes!
It’s Mental yes, running is a physical action, but the mental benefits are probably the best bonus! That run can help clear your head, help put things in perspective or maybe even solve the worlds problems. Ok maybe not ALL of the worlds problems, but for some reason, getting out there and running helps get the brain going! It’s easier to think things through and by the time you get home, you might have that looming problem solved!
So, why do I run? All of the above! It’s about pushing myself to do things that I never thought possible (and most people think I am crazy for doing). It’s about getting out there and leaving it all out on the road or trail. I love being able to get out there and see places, learn new things about myself, and have something to help keep me sane (ok some people will say this is a lost cause – probably because I run so much! LOL)
Whatever your reason, it is YOUR reason! There is no right or wrong answer. There is only YOUR answer!
So, Why do you run??