Confession: There Are Days When I Don’t Like Running

*Day 21 of the #31WriteNow Challenge*

Can I be real with y’all for a moment?

I mean, really real?

Sometimes, I don’t like running. (*phew* there, I said it…) Sometimes, I don’t actually enjoy running and I just quit altogether. Turn my music off. Turn off my Nike+ Running app and just walk myself right back home.

Have you ever gotten completely fed up with something you once really enjoyed doing? Has that ever happened to you?

Running has always come really natural to me. I was pretty fast as a kid and I would always challenge my older brother or some of his friends to a foot race down our block. “Race ya!” I’d scream, and they’d happily oblige, thinking they’d beat me. Much to their confusion and embarrassment, skinny little knobby-kneed Renisha would cream them, over and over again and they’d want a rematch. I carried that confidence in my ability to run well right on through high school and eventually in college when I turned to running for stress relief and to cope with depression.

Recently, running for me has really sucked. Most of the time, one of the following (or several of them at the same time) is happening and I just give up. Do these happen to you?

  • I can’t get into a good rhythm with my stride.
  • My music doesn’t seem to be right.
  • I can’t get good breaths in.
  • I’m tired after 3 miles.
  • Running with people makes me feel inadequate sometimes, when I see them able to go a longer distance and I have to stop after every few minutes.
  • Also, I can’t talk and run. They say you should be able to hold a conversation without too much difficulty when you’re at a nice, easy pace. Nope, not for me! I end up gasping for air most times.
  • It’s TOO HOT!
  • I forgot my water.
  • I forgot my energy gels.
  • My shoes feel heavy.
  • I forgot to tie my hair up and it’s swinging everywhere.

My “bad” runs started outweighing the “good” runs last year when my training for the Chicago Marathon went down the drain. Could this be a residual effect of my mindset when I concluded that I had to drop out of running the race? I don’t know. Even the races I’ve run this year have been sub par in my book. Just ok. Nothing to write home about.

I do plan to run for as long as I can. I aspire to run races in locations that I’ve never been before. I want to collect as many medals as possible. And my running has brought me MANY wonderful opportunities that I wouldn’t trade for the world. I’ve been really blessed by my ability to run. No doubt about that. And I am truly grateful. But sometimes, I just really don’t like running. Sometimes, I need a do-over button.

Any advice from those of you out there who are seasoned runners? What keeps you going when running starts to suck?

Be Renewed!

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