I started running as a way to lose weight and be healthy. When I began running I had no idea how it would change me. Running is so much more than just an exercise. It’s a way of life. It has so many different purposes in my life, and it has given me so much. It’s significance in my life is indescribable. I have learned so much from running; more than just lessons about running. It has also taught me many life lessons. I want to share some of them with you.
Anything is possible if you believe
When I first started running, I never thought I would be able to do it for very long. I figured I would try a few times, and then I would quit. But, after a few times, I wasn’t ready to give up. I believed that I could do better, and that it would get easier. I never thought I would run a race, but I continued to believe in myself, and now I have run 5ks, 10ks, halfs, and am training for my first full. All of this seemed impossible in the beginning. But, I learned that if you believe it will happen, you can make it happen! You are stronger than you think you are!
It takes time
When I first started running, it was painful and hard. I couldn’t run for very long without having to take a walk break. But the more time that I spent doing it, the easier it became. This logic also works for life. To be good at anything, you have to put in the time. Eventually things will get easier.
Don’t compare yourself to anyone else
This was something that was hard for me in the beginning. I was so self conscious about running outside. I didn’t want anyone to see me having to stop and walk. Just because you have to walk doesn’t make you any less of a runner. This self consciousness was all in my head. When I finally did my first race, I was able to see that runners come in all different shapes, sizes, and ability levels. I was so disappointed after that first race because all the people I ran with beat me bad! But, I got the best piece of advice from one of them and they told me to do the best that I can do and not worry about anyone else’s time. I took that advice and began to enjoy running more after I quit comparing myself to everyone around me.
There will always be disappointments
Just like in running, there are always disappointments in life. It’s how you handle them that counts. I have learned how to look at each disappointment as motivation. Sometimes it doesn’t matter how hard you try or work at something, it may not go according to plan. In running, there are bad runs, bad races, and days when you just can’t get a run in. These are all disappointments, but you learn from them and try harder the next time.
It’s okay to fail, but it’s not okay to not try
Even if you don’t win the race or get a PR, you at least tried. Running races can be scary. Setting new goals can be scary. But, it’s better to try and fail, than to not try at all. Sometimes things are scary, or are out of your comfort zone. You are never going to accomplish anything if you never try!