The Connection Runners + [running]

Finding the beauty underneath the ugly

Today is National Running Day. Of course I’ll get a run in today, and if its like my last several run, I’ll be waiting until it’s a billion degrees out to hit the streets. But beyond being a great reason to get out an run with a million of your closest buddies, its also a good time for me to stop and remind myself what running means to me.

Last week I sent Jess a text telling her I had lost my running mojo. I’ve had so many “meh” runs lately that I’ve been a little down about running. In fact, if you go back and look I pretty much haven’t even been talking about my running on here. Adam (who is a fabulous coach,you should seriously hire him) asked how one of my runs was several days ago and I basically replied “running is hard. Why am I running? I hate running. I’m taking up swimming”.

Of course I was *kind of* joking, but the reality is: running IS hard. Honestly, I don’t think it gets easier. Sure, I can run further now then when I started and yes, thanks to my amazing coach I’m actually getting faster, but is it “easier”? Nope. Goals change and there is always something to work hard for.

I keep thinking about it, turning it around in my head, probing for answers and guess what I came up with? The thing I love and hate most about running is that its HARD.

Running is such an emotional thing for me. There was a time in my life when I wasn’t capable of running, heck even walking to my car left me winded. The fact that I now consider myself a runner is mind boggling.

Last week, in an effort to find my running mojo, I sat down and watched "Spirit of the Marathon". For those of you not familiar with the movie, it follows athletes both amateur and elite as they train for and then run the Chicago Marathon.

spiritofthemarathon

I’m pretty sure it brought me to tears about five times. The runners faced the normal challenges like injuries, and doubts. I could relate SO much to what they were facing and as I watched it I kept thinking: Running is hard.

But wow, the rewards.My health, my mental well being, my social life, and much more are all positively influenced by the simple act of running. As much as I put into my running, I reap the rewards two fold.

Sure all those things sound lovely on paper, a lot of times I can just remind myself of those things and its enough to push me through my funk. But sometimes, those are just words. Sometimes I need something tangible to see, and here is what I’ve figured out:

Childbirth is HARD. Its painful, messy and just down right sucks. But if you push (ha!) through all the hard stuff you’re left with something beautiful.

dash2yrsold

And underneath the sweat, pain and occasional tears: running is beautiful too.