It looked painful. I know what it takes to run on that edge where you could shock yourself or find the wheels flying off to a glorious disaster!!
I’ve realized over the years that the women who really make me want to be a runner aren’t professionals, they’re the everyday athletes who have chosen to run despite the obstacles of life.
My idols are women with post children bellies that run proudly in a sports bra because their body is strong.
My idols are parents pushing jogging strollers that add 50+ pounds to their effort, hamper their arm swing and eliminate quick direction changes.
My idols are crossing the finish line in a tutu with the sweeper van on their heels and a smile that says “screw you I’ll get there when I get there”.
So yes,the runners who truly squeeze my heart aren’t 8% body fat and trophy holders, they’re the imperfect partners I pass everyday that sometimes grimace when giving me a head nod, but never fail to keep moving forward. Not to say I don’t find Kara, Desi and all the rest amazing…but I’m not running to win a world major so the inspiration there isn’t the same.Which is why once again today I want to share more stories of runners that have been changed by the miles!
THE SECRET RUNNERS
One of my athletes recently ran her first public 5K, which thrilled me to no end as she’d already covered the distance many times on her own…but she was unsure of showing up to the start line and calling herself a real runner. She didn’t even tell anyone she knew that she was running!! I was flabbergasted and am hoping as she lines up for her first 10K this weekend that she’ll be proud enough of her amazing achievements to give me a photo :).
In the meantime, I realized her story wasn’t as uncommon as I thought upon seeing this beautiful post from Jackie about her first 5K. Here is a snippet to which I think many of us can relate in some way whether we have been at the back of the pack or just fighting for our own goals.
So this past weekend when S. dropped me off at the starting line early – I wanted to barf.
Everyone looked so … runner. Running groups showed up, everyone had a friend (or so it seemed) and I was instantly transported back to middle school. No one was mean, but they had their people and routine and I did not. It was like they had this language I didn’t speak at all. Granted, I didn’t really WANT to run with anyone else – I am very slow, and typically mix in walking when necessary. I figured others would do the same.
I got towards the back of pack and we were off! Well. Everyone else was off. I was doing a pretty fast walk, but double strollers were passing me. A three legged dog passed me. I am not making that up. A three legged dog. The 5K course was a complete circle and the 10K weaved in and out of the 5K course on side streets. So even when I was dead last, there was always a few of the 10Kers behind me. Most of the time.
I pretty much spent the first hour of the run fighting my inner mean girl. She was out in full force and loud. I couldn’t even hear my music. It was to the point where I even considered calling S. to just come pick me up on the corner. I really wanted to stop and cry – I was overwhelmed and embarrassed. What made me think I could do this? I thought a group would motivate me to push myself, but it had the opposite effect on me.
These ladies aren’t the only one’s with stories that inspire! Here are a few more that you have shared with me that I hope will encourage others to lace up for the first time or once again after a long break.Know someone who doesn't fee like a real runner? Have them read this! Click To Tweet
AFTER KIDS RUNNING
I started running soon after my daughter’s 2nd birthday. I work a job with non-traditional hours, didn’t really have a hobby, and just wanted to be by myself for a little bit. So I ran a 10K with no training and decided I wanted to race again, but feeling strong and prepared. ericarun39
My passion started when I was little, but I never took seriously till 5 years ago, when my three daughters started to get more independent. Three month ago I started my streaking; I always enjoy running with my husband, who started to run with me. We don’t enjoy racing too much, we rather just run.❤️?
I started running with the boys at a residential program where I was working. We were preparing for a 5k and I didn’t want my group to smoke me (we had to stay together), so I trained extra. Ended up doing a half marathon 4 months later and a full within the year. Now I’m training to qualify for Boston. Thanks kids!
LATE LIFE STARTS
I started late! LOL Ran my first 5k at age 39, got hooked, then my first half that same year, then my first full marathon at age 40, then another, now I’m finally gaining speed and having so much fun! ? Running has improved my life in countless ways. This fall/spring I have 3 races and I’m super excited.rach1170
Started running last June @ the age of 43 when challenged to finish a complete a Half Marathon. Finished in 2:00:26. It was love at first step. Now I’m training to run my first Full Marathon (9/26) and chasing a sub-4 hour goal. Why not set BIG goals. Thank you for being an amazing inspiration to follow!
I started running more seriously a few years ago after being a casual jogger and always hating it. I realized I hated it because I wasn’t all that good at it. So then my determination set in and I decided that if I was good at it maybe I would like it. I started “practicing” to get better. Now I’m in love with running and have many 5ks, a half, and a triathlon under my belt.
And you’re right many of these women don’t wear Spanx, need Spanx or even care about that kind of thing. It’s just to say that the people who inspire me don’t have to be 6% body fat, they don’t have to be age group winners, they don’t have to be ultra runners….or maybe they are.
I’m inspired by anyone who chooses to show up every day and do something that’s not easy.
Who inspires your running?
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