running means a lot of different things to different people. one of my favorite running quotes from my high school cross country days is:
"my sport is your sport's punishment"
to some, running is a form of cruel punishment. but for me, this quote says in the shortest amount of words how strong, tough and athletic running makes me feel.
i never loved running, nor imagined i would end up loving running. my first venture into the sport was showing up to high school summer cross country practice with my close friend at the time. she had been asking me to join cross country for awhile so i finally gave in and agreed to try out a practice. little did i know that practice that day was hill repeats on our township's largest sledding hill. i left practice that day having to break into my parent's house (why do i forget my key in the most inconvenient moments?) when runner's stomach hit and couldn't be ignored. despite a less than encouraging first experience, i have been in love with running ever since.
i'm reflecting on this now because i just hung up my 1/2 marathon medals and "running sisters" collage in my special purple room. when finished, this room will be dedicated to writing, meditating, relaxing - just a special place for me. getting the running elements of the room in place almost instantly put a smile on my face and a big release sighed out of my chest. like this room will be for me, running is my zen. its where i can challenge myself and let go at the same time.
|my running showcase in the purple room|
i had lost that feeling (of runner's zen) for the past 1 1/2 years and am just now finding that inner belief again as i slowly climb out of the well of depression. touching the curves of the medals and thinking about the memories associated with the pictures in the collage sparked some of that energy and passion back inside me. i want more finisher medals. i want more training and race memories. i had questioned whether or not i was a runner because i couldn't get my feet out the door, but in this small moment in my purple room i realized the passion and desire of a runner never left me at all, and that is what makes me a runner.
i want the run; i always have and for everything i know about myself, i always will.
and that is why i am a runner.