Don't forget to run. It's my reminder every day. Don't forget to run, don't forget to run, don't forget to run.
I never thought I'd enjoy it. I thought running was strictly a chore to stay healthy. So I'd listen to "motivational" music and treadmill it, or I'd run outside and my lungs burned. Nothing seemed to fit.
For just a few weeks now, I've been running. It started when I was extremely stressed out by work one day and when the end of the day rolled around, I felt so extremely overwhelmed and frustrated and worried that I didn't know what to do. I hate working out so there was nothing in my closet that worked, but I hurriedly put on a pair of old beach shorts, a heavy t-shirt, and Merrells that are primarily for walking, not running. I threw my hair into a ponytail and I RAN.
And I'm not talking about a jog. I was so stressed out that day that I RAN, unhealthily pushing myself, my body that has not worked out in years. I RAN, sprinted like someone was coming after me, and everything hurt. I thought I was having a complete meltdown.
When I slowed down, my lungs about to fall apart, and my mind in a complete whir of to do lists and "oh-my-goodness-I-forgot-to-do-that" moments, I realized I actually felt...better. Could it be? Was it possible the people I knew who ran for fun, the ones I always scoffed at and thought they were insane, might actually be right?
I tried it again the next day. The temperature was creeping up but I didn't care, I wanted to try again and see if I could do it and feel the same way. I did. I felt refreshed, I felt better, I felt FREE.
The next day I took my iPhone so I could listen to my audiobook. I've always thought I was supposed to listen to something like hardcore music, or something uplifting, making me feel like I was in my own personal Chariots of Fire movie. Meh. I guess it could help. But for me, the ticket was realizing that I don't always have to do what everyone else does and instead, I decided to listen to an audiobook. It WORKED. I was so focused on the story that I didn't even realize I had been running for a little bit and that I was having fun. I could not believe it.
And you know what else I realized? I knew I was not a natural runner, but because I finally bought the RIGHT types of running gear (Brooks shoes, lightweight shorts, dri-fit socks, an armband for my iPhone, a white lightweight hat made for running so it reflects the sun and cools my head instead of my dark hair soaking in the sun), it's like it suddenly clicked. I outfitted myself with the right stuff and the gear helps, it doesn't weigh me down. It all makes sense for me.
But, it's only been a few weeks since I started running. I hope I don't lose sight of my goals to lose weight and to feel FREE, and I hope I don't forget how much FUN I'm actually having. It's my own thing, it's about me. Don't forget to run, don't forget to run, don't forget to run.