After wearing my barefoot running shoes around campus and to work (I was a lifeguard at this point) I was inspired to try running. I had read “Born to Run” and what had once been a punishment on the sports teams of my past became a way to relax, find peace, and push my own limits.
For my first race I chose to run a low-key, high-energy race, Firefly Run with my running buddy. I loved running with so many other people who had all trained thinking of the day they would run in this race. They were there because they loved running, and their cheers and talk on the short 5K course made it an amazing experience. Not to mention that it was at night and felt more like a Bike Party than a race.
Throughout my first real year of running I learned more about myself than actual technique or sport. I no longer let myself make excuses to not go running and I never return wishing I hadn’t left. Running has taught me to be content on my own and enjoy the companionship of others. You can run from your problems, but at some point you have to return home, take off your sweaty socks, and confront them.
Last year I ran 153 miles. More than I have ever run in my life, and yet less than some marathon runners will do in a month. This year I want to double that. I want to finish the Nike Women’s Half Marathon. But more than anything I want to remember to take time for myself and to prioritize my goals.