Trying to be a runner

Trying to become a runner

Growing up I sailed competitively and played softball; not sports that require much running.  Senior year of high school I got more into working out and started going to the gym.  I would dabble on the treadmill but would usually stick to the bike or elliptical machine.  Once I was in college I would always secretly envy the people I saw running around campus, glistening sweat on their faces and almost a look of euphoria. I wanted to be one of those people.  I wanted to be able to go anywhere and have a workout I could do and not be absolutely miserable doing it.  I wanted to be a runner.

Once I moved to LA my running envy became stronger.  With paths along the beach and amazing weather, there were runners everywhere.  I told myself that being a yogi I didn’t need running, that my body wasn’t built for it.  The attempts of running from my college days ended in shin splints and pulled hip flexors.  Running was just not going to be my thing.

Time went on and I felt there was something missing in my workout routine.  Yes, I was getting a good sweat in hot yoga and my heart rate would increase during bike rides and hikes but I craved that heart pounding, can’t breathe sensation.  What I truly wanted was a runner’s high.

What really motivated me to try running again was my wedding.  Most every bride goes a little turbo in the months leading up to the big day.  I wanted to reach that next level, to feel like my best self when I walked down the aisle. 

I conveniently live right near the Brentwood Country Club which has a great dirt path around it that many runners frequent.  From my apartment, the loop was a little over 2 miles.  Three or four days a week I would force myself to get up early to hit the street.  I’ll be honest, it sucked.  Every morning when I laced up my sneakers, I was dreading the next 20-30 min. (yes it takes me that long to run 2 miles) Since I had such an important event coming up it pushed me to keep going, to not give up and say well this just isn’t for me.  The wedding has come and gone (it was the MOST amazing day of my life) and guess what, I still run.  Now I run because I can, I run because my body wants it. 

One of the biggest changes that improved my running was actually getting real running sneakers.  I had been running in my Nike Flyknits.  These sneakers were perfect for walking around or hitting the gym but they did not offer me the support I needed to run.  Well after a year of running I finally walked my butt up the street to the Frontrunners store and had someone check out my feet to tell me what would be the best fit for me.  I ended up with a cute pair of Brooks and they changed the game.  That night as my husband and I took our nightly neighborhood walk, I laced up my new sneakers and felt like I was walking on a cloud.  I skipped down the street so excited about what a difference proper sneakers made. 

I still don’t love running, but I like it.  I like the feeling I get after my runs.  I still have a slow pace and I don’t really go longer than my 2-mile loop but that’s okay.  Running is something I can continue to work on, anywhere I am. 

If anyone is trying to get into running or feels their running needs an improvement I would highly recommend getting your feet checked out and shoes fit to your needs.  IT IS LIFE CHANGING!  There are many stores like Frontrunners and Road Runner that will do this for you.

Good luck!