I am a Runner

I am a “later-in-life” runner.  There, I have taken a risk and said that out loud; in cyberspace no less.

My first attempt at running was at age 28.  Sure, I had PE in school and I must have made some half-hearted attempts at timed runs, but I certainly didn’t think or feel like a runner.  I remember that first run with great clarity:  it was in Phuket, Thailand on a family vacation. My Endlessly Energetic Sister and I ran for about 1 mile – we were gasping and had to lie down for a long time after.

In the early days, even when I was seriously training for a 1/2 marathon, I hesitated to tell people that I ran.  I used euphemisms like jogging or waddling, because I frankly didn’t think I moved fast enough to qualify as a runner, nor did I fit the bill of what I thought a runner should look like (think long-legged Flo-Jo)

What is running anyway?  Dictionary.com says it is to go quickly by moving the legs more rapidly than at a walk and in such a manner that for an instant in each step all or both feet are off the ground.

Almost 20 years later, I am still apologetic when I talk about running.  When people ask me about it, I am very quick to qualify that I run very slowly, and I do stop and walk, etc etc.  I don’t race, I don’t chalk up impressive mileage, and I still do not look like the slender, willowy women runners I see so often on the roads (with a great deal of envy, I might add!)

I run because I like the alone time:  the time it affords me to enjoy my own company & the thinking that comes along with it.  I enjoy exploring new parts of the city I live in – walking is a chore, but running is fun … go figure!  And when I am fortunate enough to travel, I love seeing new places in this way (e.g. the above photo was taken by Loving Husband during one of our Hong Kong Disneyland Resort runs a few weeks ago).  I even enjoy the challenge of beating the drudgery of off days, when I feel like I’d rather be in bed or when I’ve had an unsatisfying outing.

So, I may not look like a runner, nor do a lot of things that runners do.  But I am out there.  I am a Runner.

What about you?


6 Replies to “I am a Runner”

    1. Hee hee! Am so glad you read this older post and that it spoke to you! Since you are thinking on Moving Our Bodies, an App which I am really enjoying right now is 8Fit. It does HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) and it has done wonders for making me stronger! Check it out to see what you think.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Reblogged this on Sunrise, Sunset and commented:

    Running is a metaphor for how I want to tackle life: the odds may be against me, but I will try anyway.

    I was chatting some years ago with a Runner Friend,  back before I ran regularly. She was extolling the joys of running and my excuse: I am so short & stout (contrasting with her tall & lanky build), how on earth am I supposed to be running?  She said soothingly to me that her running friends were of different sizes and physiques. I was somewhat mollified by our conversation, although somewhat incredulous.

    I still wouldn’t consider myself a serious runner:  I don’t run far, I don’t run long, I don’t compete.  But I am serious about my running.  I made a start when I was approaching 30 because I was struggling with the mortality of my life (my mid-life crisis came early).  I figured if I was ever struck down by a debilitating illness, being healthy would be an advantage.  I also thought the discipline of pushing myself one more step would be helpful if I ever needed to fight for my life.

    Just about 20 years later, this was all called to test. The Hospitalisation and The Subsequent Rehabilitation called up all the fitness reserve and determination I had built up. Having to re-learn how to walk in the hospital on account of deteriorated muscles, and then rebuilding the stamina which pneumonia had depleted.  The promise of running again became my life line. 

    It has been almost 9 months since I left the hospital.  My runs are no longer a frenetic goal-driven outings.  I am enjoying my rambles and zen moments again.  There is no where I’d rather be than out on a run.

    I am not so naive to think I that I can do this indefinitely; both my athletic parents have had to exchange their sporting passions for less vigorous cardiopulmonary, muscle-maintaining pursuits.  But for as long as I can, I will hit that pavement.


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