I have never been athletic. I used to fake sick to get out of gym class. When my parents made me go to soccer camp, I wanted to cry.
It’s not that I didn’t want to play sports, but they all involved one thing I just hated…running. “Why would any one do that willingly?” I always wondered when I saw people out for a run. I just didn’t get it.
My anti-running attitude lasted all the way up until the summer after my first year of graduate school. Graduate school can be stressful, and I managed to put on the doctoral student version of the freshman 15 pretty quickly.
One the phone one day, I vented to my mother about my weight and about school. My mom, who had recently run her first half marathon, suggested I take up running. I resisted. And resisted. And resisted some more.
Then my mom made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. She would take me to Disney World…if I agreed to run the Disney Princess Half Marathon with her. Next thing I knew I was registered for my first half marathon.
The first day I went out to run…well, it wasn’t pretty. The stitch in my side wouldn’t go away and I thought I was going to pass out after jogging for 30 seconds. But amazingly, I didn’t quit. Every run got a little easier and after six months of training, I earned my first piece of running bling.
Crossing that finish line changed my life. I just wanted to run again! Since that day I have become one of those crazy people who actually loves to run. Sure, somedays it’s hard. Somedays I would rather stay in bed. But in my heart, I am a runner.