Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Confessions from a Runner

I love running, I really do. I love the feeling of pushing myself farther than I thought I could go. I love feeling the muscles in my body work together to push onward with each stride. And I love blasting worship music to remind me of Who gave me this healthy body to run with in the first place.

I love running. But lately, I haven't been in love with it.

{Sounds like I'm breaking up with it, huh?}

Maybe, it has to do with a lingering half marathon that I know I'm not nearly as prepared for as my last one. Maybe it has to do with some stitches that kept me off my feet for a while. Whatever it is, it has me dragging my feet before a run. It has me putting it off until tomorrow, or choosing to stay in bed juust a bit longer before I hit the trails. 

I've been off my game lately, and I'm not afraid to admit that. 

I wanted to write this out, because I know I'm not alone in this. I know I'm not the only person who has a love-hate relationship with running. Or working out at all, for that matter. I know I'm not the only one who can feel the discouragement of knowing I'm not as ________ (insert fast/strong/in shape/word of choice) as I used to be. 

But you know what? I learned something this past weekend. I was reminded that regardless of how fast I run, or how long I run for, or how good (or bad) I feel after the race, 
I still finish. I still achieve. I still accomplish. 

I stopped to walk during this past 10K. I haven't done that when running on my own since I was training for my first 10K back in February. It was kind of this daunting thing hanging over me, I knew it would eventually happen. I knew I would one day have to stop and walk during a run, but I didn't know how I would feel. Would I be upset? Would I be discouraged? 

Well, I don't have to wonder anymore. It happened on Sunday, while running up one of the bigger hills. It was time, it was time to stop and walk. "Is this it? Am I done running?" I thought to myself. I knew it wasn't, but I think I just had to ask myself. I just had to remind myself that no, this isn't it. Yes, it's okay to stop and walk. 

I stopped to walk one other time before crossing that finish line. And you know what? That's okay! I only took 6 extra minutes from my last 10K, but really, that doesn't matter. Even if I had doubled my time, I still would have finished feeling like a champion. 

That's how running works, it's a journey.  Some days you kill it, and some days you don't. But every time you get out there and run? 
You finish. You achieve. You accomplish.

Photographed by Kevin Steele


The Pink Growl said...

That picture is amazing at the finish line! I have a very love/hate relationship with running. It heals me and makes me feel accomplished, but my body just isn't where it needs to be and it starts to hate me during a run so sometimes I let a run defeat me. Love this post!

Something Infinitely Interesting said...

So amazing! It's ok to walk sometimes i tell myself. It happens and next time you do better :)

Anna said...

This was exactly what I needed to read. I have definitely been feeling the same way and the only thing that's been getting me out the door are my races looming in the distance.

I may just have to leap across the finish line this weekend like you--this picture just made my day!

Rainey said...

I kind of feel like I'm not "in love" with it either right now. Of course, I've only gotten myself up to running 2 miles, but I've been struggling to make myself do it the last couple of weeks. Oh well, hopefully it's a phase.

Tabitha said...

Loooooooooooove everything about this post. (Do I say that in basically every comment I make on your blog?) But seriously.

Linnea said...

What a great picture!!

Evelien said...

Hahaha I LOVE that picture at the finish line! That's how I feel when I deliver one of my cakes that took me sooo much work to get finished. Hihi :)

Julie said...

Okay, so one: I absolutely adore that photo of you crossing the finish line! And two: I have these same. exact. feelings. I have such a love hate relationship with running and working out. I do it because I love how it feels to push myself and treat my body right, and yet some days I do not love how it feels at all and I get lazy about it. Definitely encouraged to read this today Amy :)

Heather Leigh @ Adifferent kind of woman said...

This picture is Ah-mazing!!! GIRL you are so inspiring. I really need to start running.. I just dislike the feeling of it but I was told once you get in the habit it of it becomes a really amazing experience. :)

Alesha said...

What a good reminder for my running! <3

Pamela said...

This is great!! LOVE the picture!!

Natalie Lacey said...

This picture is amazing!!!!

Brittany GraceAnn said...

YOU are awesome! I have a special place in my heart for runners... because I just am NEVER gonna be one! POWER to ya!!! So happy we could meet this past weekend in INDY! WOOT WOOT! We have a lot of the same friends... which means we have to be friends ASAP! XO see ya next year?!?!?!