Running is one of the most common suggested types of workouts. Yet, running is also the FIRST type of workout people will immediately inform you that they HATE. Marathoners are CRAZY. Morning runners are NUTS. Running SUCKS.
BRUTAL! What’s up with running getting such a bad wrap? We, as humans, walk upright by nature. We do it all day long without even thinking about it. So, why doesn’t running necessarily come as second nature?
While I’m a huge proponent of ditching every type of workout you HATE and discovering something you LOVE to inspire your fitness, I often think what people THINK they know about running can often be different from what it CAN be interpreted for YOU. A few ways I see running to juggle the typical ways people think about running:
#1) Running as gossip. Our lives are busy. And one of the TWO things we don’t get enough of, is #1) time with our friends and #2) exercise. So why not combine them? I make running dates. I swap coffee-catch-ups with running-catch-ups. Running with a great friend allows us to gossip and catch up without ANY interruptions. There’s something pure, beautiful and bonding about a sweaty running catch-up date. Gossip also helps you run farther. It’s been proven.
#2) Running as a secret superhero alter ego. When we run, we proudly rock the TIGHTEST of clothing we’d never otherwise leave the house in. When we run, we brave the world without makeup, but aren’t afraid to run in mascara either. When we run, there are no mirrors, yet we envision ourselves as graceful, mile-hungry gazelles with long legs and strong muscles. When we run, we transform into the most kickass superhero version of ourselves moving at light speeds in our own unique style—no matter how fast or slow we go. And the coolest thing about running, is with every mile we are transforming into exactly that.
#3) Running as a game. Gamify your run. It’s a step-by-step will-you-or-won’t-you game. And it can be a game of one (or a group game, too - see #5). If you can forget all outside expectations or preconceived notions about running and literally run as much or one step more than you did on your last run, YOU WIN. If you get up the next day to run again, BONUS POINTS.
#4) Running as a pen pal. The definition of a “running buddy” has changed dramatically over the past few years thanks to social media. Just because you don’t have a neighbor or friend who can meet you every morning or after work to run, it doesn’t mean you can’t have that bond, accountability, competition and support that a running buddy provides. If you set goals and attempt to reach them “together” (though emails, text, blogging, twitter, instagram, or even a regular old phone call), it can bring two runners together no matter where they are.
#5) Running as a team sport. If you’re looking for a group sport, DO NOT discount running as a solo ONLY venture. Whether you want in on the group energy you get from running a race, or if you’re looking for the literal TEAM something like a Ragnar Relay provides (that’s a 12-person relay team of amateur runners taking on 200 miles over 24 hours in locations across the country), running can be a total team sport at any varying degree you so desire.
Whether you love or hate it, I challenge you to think about what running—or any other type of fitness you “hate”—could be reinterpreted into YOUR life. There are no rules here. Make running YOURS.
Emily @ Move Your Booty
image via carlaidoscopee