Wednesday, August 22, 2007

30 Years of Running

My local running store, Track Shack, celebrated its 30th year anniversary last weekend at a race. I recognized all the 70's songs being played and realized that I too had been running for about 30 years.

Yes, indeed, I was a high school sophomore in 1977 and that was just about the time I had first started running, or jogging as it was called back then since I wasn't on any team or trying out for one (I was way too slow!). I did it simply because my friends and I wanted to meet some boys on a cross-country team from a nearby school. Every week or so we'd go to a nearby park to run the course they did, hoping to see them and hang out afterwards. Silly, now that I look back on it.

That was many years ago and a lot has happened since, but the one thing I'm still doing is running. I may not have always run at least 3 times a week or even once a week but I am still running and enjoying it. Here are 30 ways, reasons, excuses I've used to continue doing it in no particular order. Maybe one will help some of you if you should ever find yourself in a funk or the flame fading.

1. Run to be with friends and socialize.
2. Run to spend time with your SO, child or a pet.
3. Run to clear your mind of stress.
4. Run to feel good about yourself physically.
5. Run to think about a problem that's on your mind.
6. Run to enjoy a scenic route or view.
7. Run to do an errand or go somewhere.
8. Run to be able to fit into a new outfit you want to wear.
9. Run to be able to reward yourself with some delicious treat.
10. Run to be in good shape to do other activities that require stamina (hiking, cycling, skating, etc).
11. Run to be able to say you did it (conquered that hill, finished that race, ran marathons in all 50 states, etc).
12. Run to compete against others.
13. Run to compete with yourself.
14. Run to raise funds for a cause.
15. Run to be a good role model or help others get started.
16. Run to do other sports that involve running (dus/tris, basketball, etc).
17. Run to be able to have an excuse to travel to interesting places.
18. Run to get more enjoyment out of a new place when you travel.
19. Run to meet new people.
20. Run to celebrate a major milestone birthday and your good health.
21. Run indoors when it's too hot or otherwise nasty outdoors.
22. Run in the pool when you have an impact-related injury.
23. Run faster than usual with a running group or get a coach.
24. Run while following a structured training program.
25. Run to be able to fill out your log book and see your progress.
26. Add variety to your running (different distances, slow/fast workouts, vary routes, substitute or add XT workouts).
27. Get yourself a new running gadget, outfit, shoes or partner.
28. Read/listen to running publications, podcasts, blogs, seminars, etc.
29. Run free of any gadgets & expectations. Don't even log the run. Just run purely for fun!
30. If all else fails, take a break and let the desire to run return on its own.

PS - Many would say that I didn't become a runner until 2002 when I entered my first official race. I disagree. To me, a runner is someone who runs regularly or enjoys running, regardless of speed or motivation.


Petraruns said...

Shirley - that's great! I bet you had no trouble coming up with 30 reasons either.. Have to admit the flame is fading a bit here but this really helps. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. And well done by the way - 30 years is good going!

Brent Buckner said...

I agree. Runners run - simple as that. No races required.

Susan said...

I love the list. Thanks for posting!

Anonymous said...

Don't forget 2a. To get away from the SO, Child, or other ;-)

ShirleyPerly said...

I think 2a would be covered by 3, not that I've ever done it ;-)

IrishBlue said...

That's a terrific list Shirley. Thanks for sharing that and for your advice for those of us with low mojo.

Rural Girl said...

I can relate to some of your reasons but not all. I guess I still have a way to go before I can call myself a runner like you. Great list.

CewTwo said...

I do like the comment from anonymous! Sometimes that is exactly my way of getting away (even if it is just for an hour)!