Yes, I’ve worked at a running store and can tell you all the nerdy scientific details about your sneakers and your various injuries. And while I have competed in countless races from 5ks to half marathons to Tough Mudders, you may be surprised to know I am relatively new to the sport.
Running only came in to my life when I was a sophomore in college. Before then I don’t think I had ever even run a mile, as my gym classes in school were always a huge joke. I swam competitively for most of my life and it wasn’t until January of 2010 when my friend signed me up for a March half marathon and a June Olympic distance triathlon that I was forced to commit. Fortunately, being a distance swimmer, I had the endurance, so it was more a matter of learning the proper breathing techniques and strengthening some different muscles. Jumping from one of the lowest impact sports to one of the highest was not easy on my body. But within several months I fell in love with the exhilarating feeling of emptying my mind and letting my body fall into an effortless rhythmic motion. Even after a mildly sprained ankle, a stress fracture in my second metatarsal and chronic shin splits, I haven’t given up on the sport. Its one of those things where the health benefits weigh out the negative effects. Maybe not marathon distances, but the human body is designed to run. Whenever I have trouble getting out the door, I imagine what it would be like to not have the ability to run. Nothing can replace the feeling of running down the empty streets before everyone else wakes up or setting out on the day the weather finally turns to spring!