I’ve gone through a running journey that will (God willing) probably continue for the rest of my life…yet for a long time, I refused to label myself a “runner”.
I took up running when my sister-in-law Jennifer was looking for a running buddy and I was interested in losing some weight, and have been hooked ever since. No matter if I’m training for a marathon or barely squeaking by on 5 miles a week, I have finally gotten over myself and admitted to myself that I am a runner!
I go through phases when I stop running altogether but I will still read about running, look at other runner’s instagram posts, and even sit and think about speed training programs. Yet, even when I was looping White Rock Lake (only real runners do this on Saturdays) at the butt crack of dawn, I was somehow intimidated to call myself a full-blown runner.
Why? I’ll tell you why…I was stuck on this idea that runners had to look a certain way. They had to have those long, thin limbs that make them look like they can get carried away by the wind at any moment and they don’t have anything that jiggles, flops or bounces.
The reality of the sport of running is that runners come in all ages, shapes, sizes, and colors. And that is what made me fall in love with running. It’s inclusive of everyone, regardless of bodytype, and the results are undeniably good for your health. It’s one of the only sports where you can literally go out to a park, or where ever, and join a runner’s group and no one will think you are a freaking weirdo. They will welcome you and say, “Oh hi, what’s your PR goal?”. Then, they will proceed to ask you about your nice running pants or shoes. Amazing, because this actually happened to me when I joined a running group!
That’s when it all clicked for me…I am a runner. I started looking around and found these incredible, yet normal people like me that are running like the hilarious genius of Kelly on Run, Selfie, Repeat and the mold breaking covers of the Women’s Running magazine that dared to look like this and this, and I was further inspired to show my pride for the running community that I belong to.
Running for the past ten years has helped me overcome post-baby weight, served as therapy for stressful job situations, and helped keep my sanity when life’s pressures are threatening to spill over. Not to mention it brought me closer to some of my dear friends like the other two NonBlondes! My unicorn will often tell me to, “Go for a quick run” when he sees the crazy behind my eyes. He would rather spend an hour putting kids to bed on his own than having me be a miserable mess all night because I didn’t get to put in the miles. So, I’ve come to the realization that it doesn’t matter where or how or why I run, and the important part is that I continue getting out there and proving to myself that I am a runner and I’m actually kind of good at it!
I’m currently in one of my running modes where I run often, but not for long distances. I can’t seem to balance my time between life’s responsibilities well enough to get away for hours, so I cherish anytime I can get to hit the street or gym treadmill. I mostly run on my own, but lately, I’ve had the luck of
bribing having the company of my sisters or my friends and other times it’s just me and Babyzilla in the stroller. I used to run half marathons and even ran one while pregnant with Isabella and then shortly post-baby, but that goal is not in my short term future. Instead, I try to make the most of every short run that I get and keep pushing myself beyond my limits.
So, if you live within a twenty mile radius of North Dallas and need a running buddy, let me know! Do you like to run races? What’s your best PR? Are you a closet runner like I was? Share your stories with us in the comments section.