Marathon Week: What Doesn’t Come Naturally

4 Oct

I’m the over-achiever type. If there is something that I am interested in, I tend to go at it full force until I excel. If it’s not something I’m interested in, like algebra, then I work hard to not let my other grades fall, but overall don’t really care one way or the other. I’ve never been in the situation of caring about something deeply yet not being good at it. I was interested in art, so I became a graphic designer and am pretty decent at it. I am obsessed with all things French and studied it until I became fluent. Then there’s running. I love it and have been reading tons of books and magazines to learn more about it. But…I am seriously bad at it. And it doesn’t look like I’ll ever really improve.

This entire training process has been really difficult, because I have had to work and work and work and not see much improvement. Granted, I’ve seen great gains in my distance ability obviously, but as far as speed, I’ve stayed steadily at the very back of the pack. It’s a weird area to be in. I’m always in the front. And I’ve done everything I can do to try to get better. I’ve read Runner’s World religiously, trying to learn new tips and techniques. I’ve changed my diet, training, refueling snacks, but no luck.

I am a hopelessly bad runner. It’s a hard fact to swallow, but at the same time, I am really happy just to be doing it. My doctor said I never would be a runner, and now I am. I work extremely hard and feel nearly every minute of every run. I’m not one of those lucky people who zones out and doesn’t realize that 2 hours and 15 miles has gone by. I realize that I’ve been running for 2 hours and am at 8 miles. But every so often, I get a runner’s high or a few moments of bliss and I realize how much I love running. I realize how grateful I am to be a runner. And I kind of don’t care that I’m bad at it.

The rest of the time I do struggle with every step and minute. I have to constantly talk myself through each mile to keep going and push harder. But when those brief moments of complete and utter joy come along, it is so worth it. It’s such a friendly sport too, where no one cares how good or bad you are. Everyone is just so happy you’re running, that there is so much encouragement and camaraderie.

I am a runner. No one take that away from me, no matter how slow I am. With the first step I took, I became a runner, and I always will be. I will probably always be in the back of the pack, but I think I am okay with that.

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One Response to “Marathon Week: What Doesn’t Come Naturally”

  1. Laura October 4, 2011 at 3:19 PM #

    We have alot in common 🙂

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