It’s Mine :)

I ran a 1/2 marathon… 12 weeks ago I literally could not run 1 mile.

“I don’t think you can become an outstanding runner unless you get a certain amount of enjoyment out of suffering. You have to enjoy absorbing it, controlling it and- ultimately- overcoming it.” -Derek Clayton

It occurred to me that if people didn’t point it out to me, I might not realize how incredibly happy I am. Other poeple see a change in you before you can recognize it in yourself.

“I enjoy hearing about your training. You seem to have found something you really love.”

I love running. I love running races. I love running on treadmills. I love running outside. I didn’t realize how amazing I feel after a run. A good run, a bad run, an average run. It doesn’t matter. I didn’t give up, so honestly, in my mind, a bad run doesn’t exist.
Now why do I love it so much, you might ask… Here’s the most awesome thing. I love it because it’s mine. No one told me to run. No one suggested it. I’m not doing it to impress anyone. I’m not doing it because a boy I like does it or because my friends do it. I started running because I wanted to. And while, yes, I have gained irreplaceable friendships from it, I keep running because I want to. I can run for miles and miles all alone and feel like I’m a part of something. And God is with me. I feel spiritual when I run. And I know that I look ridiculous and sweaty and tired when I run. But God doesn’t care. My running friends and other runners don’t care. And sometimes I want to quit because it’s hard, but I walk… and then I run some more.

This is from one of my very favorite books, and it may sound corny, but this is what I feel I experience when I run, and why I think I will always keep running:
“Maybe there are as many definitions of spiritual awakenings as there are people who have had them. But certainly each genuine one has something in common with all the others. And these things which they have in common are not too hard to understand. When a man or a woman has a spiritual awakening, the most important meaning of it is that he has now become able to do, feel and believe that which he could not do before on his unaided strength and resources alone. He has been granted a gift which amounts to a new state of consciousness and being. He has been set on a path which tells him he is really going somewhere, that life is not a dead end, not something to be endured or mastered. In a very real sense he has been transformed, because he has laid hold of a source of strength which, in one way or another, he had hitherto denied himself. He finds himself in possession of a degree of honesty, tolerance, unselfishness peace of mind and love which he had thought himself quite incapable. What he has received is a free gift, and yet usually, at least in some small part, he has made himself ready to receive it.”

I finally have something that is mine. 5 months ago, if you would have asked me what my hobbies were, I would either been tongue-tied, or quick made something up and felt embarrassed that I didn’t have a real answer. Now- no hesitation- I love to run. It feels good to have something that I do for me. When I have a bad day, running makes it better. When I have a good day, I celebrate by running. When I have an average day… I still run.