Last week when I was on vacation I did lots and lots of reading by the pool. It was glorious. I don’t usually have a ton of time to really sit down and plow through a book so I took advantage of the time and checked a bunch of books out of the library. Some were, of course, running related.
One of them was Mile Markers: The 26.2 Most Important Reasons Why Women Run by Kristin Armstrong. The amazon page for the book is here.
I really enjoyed this book, and it was a pretty quick read. There was one passage that stood out to me that I really wanted to share. I think it summarizes how a lot of runners may feel. It is from the “love/hate” chapter of the book (the bolded parts were bolded by me).
“I realized that I am out here, most day of every week, pursuing something that does not come naturally or easily to me. And I have been doing this for 5 years. Never in my life, before running, did I ever push hard after something that did not rank high on the list of things that come easily to me. I have always aspired to and excelled at things that I was really good at…But running isn’t like that for me. It’s hard for me. I struggle. I suffer. I get discouraged. I get mad. I celebrate, sometimes…
I love it in the way you love a rivalrous sibling, a deep-tissue massage, a session with your therapist, childbirth, or a big fight with someone you love. It doesn’t always feel good at the moment but ultimately you are a better person for it.
So I may not always run the way I want to run or race the way I imagine myself racing…but there is a certain endurance rush reserved for those of us who have to work extra hard just to stand at the start line and dream.
There is a unique beauty to pursuing the glow that resides just beyond our reach.“
I have to push myself just to get out there. Running doesn’t come naturally to me, it never has, and it may never. It is so so worth it when you cross that “finish line” though, whether it be for a daily run or a race.
Pushing yourself beyond your reach is the greatest reward.