Susan Tirch, Blog Author 37, Texas
I started running in 2009 seriously (and I use that term VERY loosely), however, prior to then I had taken a couple of jaunts. I remember being 21ish and challenging myself to run ONE mile out and then back home. It was to the Shop N Save and back. Eventually I went a little past the Shop N Save, and then little further from there and so on until before I knew it, I had worked myself up to a 5 mile run. The point is, start small and add a LITTLE bit each time you go out. Don't try to do it all at once.
I'm happiest not necessarily when I'm running my fastest, but when I've had a really great run. Some days are better than others, but when you hit a good day when your body feels great, your breathing is under control and your mind is let loose to really enjoy it, there is just nothing like it. It hard to get all cylinders firing at the same time, but when they do it puts a smile on my face all day long.
Normally when I'm running a long distance I can't think about the finish line. I'm only thinking about the two steps in front of me. If I get wrapped up thinking about what's left I'm too preoccupied and not focusing on here and now. It's better, for me, to just focus on what is in my control-- right here, right now!
I find it very difficult to not strap on my Garmin when I go for a run. It seems so silly because I didn't have a Garmin for awhile, but once you get one it's hard to give it up. Even if I think I'll go out without it one day, I never do. On the rare occasion I've forgotten it, I still wind up figuring how far I went and what my pace most likely was.
You see all different shapes, sizes, and ages at races. It never ceases to amaze me what some people are capable of even if it appears as though they "shouldn't" be able to do it. I often find myself during races feeling "sorry" for the heavier person in the race moving along and then I snap out of it and realize if I can see them they're IN FRONT of me so no sense feeling sorry for them!
I used to run in negative temperatures and now that I'm a Texan I find myself cringing when it is in the 40s. Even still, I'd run in freezing temps over the heat and humidity any day of the week.
Running is a constant struggle for me. I've never found running easy as it is not something that comes naturally to me. I guess that is part of the appeal because I'm always up for a challenge. I don't like being told there is something that I can't do. Tell me I can't run... I'll show you! Yeah what? Ok fine... I'll show you how to do it slowly.
Before I did my first marathon I didn't understand the amount of time and dedication that goes into doing a race of this distance. I always thought, oh sure I can run 26.2. No one really talks about the MONTHS of training and the sacrifice.
Running is so much about mind over matter. One of my personal mantras is the body achieves what the mind perceives. It's true. If you think you can't... you can't.