Well, I am back at school, unpacked and preparing for the week ahead. It was a great trip back, I even took a detour at a favorite place of mine (and several others)
This was made even more exciting by the fact that I had never been to this one! A whole NEW Whole Foods waiting for me to be explored :D. And this location in Woburn did not disappoint, great hot food bar, a burrito station, pizza, and a trail mix bar! Exciting stuff I know. Please tell me I am not the only one that gets this elated at the thought of this darn grocery store?!
It’s actually nice to be back, I said hi to several of my residents who said they missed being here! This makes me happy, as I try to enhance their experience at school as an RA (more about this later!)
This is another post for the “Below The Surface” series, I hope you enjoy 🙂
On the drive back, I had some time to just think. I thought about what I had to do this week, my family, this blog, and something nagging me about running.
Why did I begin running? When I quit swimming in 2008, the gym quickly began to bore me and I wanted to find a substitute. I also gained a bit of weight at that time, and thought running would be the best way to lose a few pounds. This was around the same time as starting Weight Watchers, so running had been a means of weight loss. As my stamina, endurance and athletic ability increased, my obsession for running followed suit. Now there were days I could get lost in the run; observing the scenery, listening to music, thinking, and enjoying what my body was capable of.
However, as I got more fixated on my routines around food, running and exercising became a focus as well. About a year after I quit swimming and took up running, I would feel uncomfortable with missing more than two days of running in a row. But why was this? I feared of getting fat, losing everything I had built up from running in just a few days….
As I am reforming a healthy relationship with food, I am attempting to make amends with running, and find the joys and benefits it provides beyond weight loss.
After I returned to school today, unpacked and settled in a bit, I went for a run. I challenged myself to not wear my ipod, a watch, no cell phone or anything, and just jog at a comfortable pace. This helped me understand why I love running: it was just a short, 25 minute run, yet it helped me to realize that I run to:
- Take time for myself to think
- Get away from obligations, even if it’s just for a few minutes
- Savor the feeling after ending your run: that you are empowered, even if it’s temporary
- Simply enjoy the scenery, weather, or whatever else the environment is offering that day
- A time where I can simply not think at all
- Hear my own heart beat, and blood flowing as I test my body to its limits (during a workout)
- Experience a flood of endorphins as the sweat trickles down from your body
- Even if I am having a bad day, when I finish a run, everything is better
- You never know what you can find while exploring a new path
Several of these are mental benefits, yet I also love the physical ones that come along with running, beyond WEIGHT LOSS. My quads, hamstrings and calves have become more defined, and I generally feel stronger.
Today I went from this: To This! hehe.
Somewhere along the way I forgot how much I love running, and am seeking to find my passion for it once again. If I engage in this sport simply for appearance, what the heck is the point?!
What are your reasons for running? And if you don’t engage in this sport, why do you choose your form of exercise? I would love to hear ideas, so I can add to my list 🙂