Thursday, September 18, 2008

Run, Eliza, Run

I'm an avid runner and I really love it. This is a recent development in my life. I, like most people, used to hate to run. In high school, I remember during field hockey season, every Monday my coach would require us to do a timed two-mile. If I were to look at my attendance records, Mondays would be my most frequent mental health days.

It was the start of college when I really developed this love of running. I think its cause I don't have to do it anymore that I really love it now. I can just throw on my jogging shoes at any hour of the day and run for however long I want, wherever I want. I find it to be a completely liberating experience, knowing I have no path mapped out in front of me, no one to tell me where to go. I find I can think more when I'm running. My mind is free to wander where ever it wants. No one is there to distract me or tell me I'm wrong.

The obsession began with just a few miles every day or every other day. Once around campus was my route. Before I knew it, the few miles turned into 8 or 9 miles a day. My distance became a bit of an obsession.

Running has many advantages for me. Not only is it advantageous for me physically, I also find it to be mentally helpful. Whenever I'm stressed or angry, going to for a run is my outlet.

Now a lot of people run, I know. Some people say they enjoy too, but without a pair of running shoes, I think I might just self-destruct. For those of you who hate running, I suggest you stop viewing it as a chore. Try running by the beach, or on a trail. Go to a place that is visually stimulating, and you might just realize that running is in no way a chore, but instead a great way to enjoy the outdoors. If you can't run outside, and you have to use a treadmill, try making a great playlist on your Ipod or mp3 player. This will also make the experience enjoyable.

Many people say they dislike running because it is boring. I say, you just don't know how to run. Mix it up. Sprint for a few seconds, jog for few, walk for a few. Maybe try sprinting during the chorus of a song or sprinting at every stop sign. Also, try getting a running buddy. Every week my sister and I go run at Santa Monica. We find it is a great time to catch up with each other.

Running for most is a dreadful task. For me, it's the best part of my day. Everyday I spend at least one hour running. I have found ways to keep it exciting and I think if people take my advice, they will also discover how truly enjoyable running can be.

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