Last night I was looking back over my very first runs in the runstreak from December last year. The very first one I wrote 'Do you count yourself as a runner only when you don't finish a run and think 'blimey, I'm not dead!'??? I don't think I'm there yet'. I definitely didn't think of myself as being a runner. Now, I do. Now, I know that when I think about the day ahead, I think about the stuff that's going to happen, and know that somewhere in that day, there will be a place for a run. I know that even if my run is hard work, it doesn't matter. I was still out there, giving it a go. I know that there will be good runs and bad runs. I know that sometimes it'll flow. And other times it'll be a complete struggle. I can happily chat about running with other runners. I have opinions on running socks and sports bras. I can wince with sympathy when someone mentions chafing. I love running in the summer... but if you remind me of the days I spent inhaling flies or trying to wipe the sting of sweat from my eyes as I overheated... I'll twitch slightly.
Does that make me a runner?
Not really. I am a runner because I run. I know what running does for my health. For my head. For my heart. And even if it didn't do all of that stuff, I'd still slap my trainers on because maybe, just maybe, I'll score one of those runs that winds back the clock 30 years and makes me feel like a 10-year old screeching down a hill at top speed. Landing up in that place, exactly halfway between fear and exhilaration, where nothing else matters except for feeling free.
And today, after a really REALLY terrible night's sleep (two panic attacks as well as nightmares - go me!) I made up a route because I fancied making up a route. And part way through discovered a new, even more stupidly steep hill and felt like I was cacking myself as I went down it, running in the road and praying that no cars came along as I did it. And properly felt alive.
Being a runner isn't about finishing a run and not feeling almost dead. Being a runner is about feeling completely alive while you're doing it.
Running is frickin' brilliant.
Geeky stats stuff
|Avg Pace:||8:48 min/mi|
|Elevation Gain:||197 ft|