Before nearly every long run, during most long runs, and occasionally even after a long run, I sincerely question my sanity. Who the fresh hell willingly runs 20+ kilometres? I ask. Why do you do this to your feet? I wonder when I want to wear an open-toed shoe. Can I glue a fake toenail on there? I’ve asked professionals when my training has resulted in another nailless toe.
Have I lost my damn mind? I’m pretty sure my loved ones ask it, too.
Outside of the physical commitment required for distance running, there is a massive time commitment because d’ya know what takes a long ass time? Running 20+ kilometres.
(Interjection: In the middle of writing this blog post, I actually signed up to do a 50 km bike ride. I am actually losing it.)
I feel the need to state what I imagine is already obvious: I love running. In a lot of ways, it’s my therapy, my me-time, my favourite hours of the week. But it’s also a curveball in my life. Running means missed nights out, and missed brunches with people I love.
It eats up hours of my “downtime”. Suffice it to say, running takes up a big part of our lives.
Fortunately, M and F are both understanding and supportive. In fact, my two favourite guys met me on the trail today to complete the final 5 km of a 17 km run that hadn’t gone smoothly. Step after step, I questioned my sanity. I was sore. I was tired. I was exhausted. Running when the run feels hard and your legs feel heavy is NOT fun. I think that’s why many new runners never find their happiness: when you’re not used to the discomfort of a shitty run, it’s exceptionally unpleasant.
So why do I do it?
Well, the short answer is I love it and I’m actually pretty good at it. But the longer answer is this:
- Running, despite the fact I’m always trying to go faster, lets me slow down in all the right ways.
- A few years ago, running three kilometres felt like a huge accomplishment (and it was). Being able to actually see your body change and become stronger is really, really cool.
- The running community is supportive, fun, and easily accessible.
- And, possibly most importantly, it gives me an excellent excuse for seconds at dinner.
I can now recognize when I’m having a less-than-great run and beat it mentally. Mind over matter has never been truer than when you just want to sit down because your legs weigh 300 pounds. Each.
One thought on “have I lost my damn mind?”