Almost anyone can run, but not everyone is a runner.   Being a runner is really not just a physical thing either, in fact, it’s mostly a mindset. Runners know that when they lace up their running shoes and hit the pavement, trail or treadmill that they are about to go through some stuff. By “stuff” I mean emotional highs and lows, maybe some aches and pains, perhaps a physical break through, some good runs and some bad runs, but the one thing all runners have in common is that they look forward to their next run.  Runners are a different breed of exercisers. Runners must be physically and mentally tough because successfully executing a running program demands that you be. Whether you are running a mile or a marathon, it’s your body versus space and time. While you can lose yourself in the activity, it’s all about you and what you’re made of in that moment. If you are a challenge-seeker, then running is your activity.
For those thinking about or just starting out in the sport of running, I’d like to offer an analogy that illustrates what running is all about. Running is a lot like life.   For example, you need a plan as you embark on a running program, much like you need a life plan. Specifically, you need to set short and long-term goals to keep you motivated and advancing forward.  You need milestones, and just as in other aspects of life it’s great to celebrate when you achieve success along your running journey. Just like in life, you will experience peaks and valleys throughout the course of your running program, and when you hit a rough patch giving up is not an option--you just double down on your resolve and push through to the next peak. You should always look forward, never backward, as you run toward your goals. The past is done, so looking forward will keep you focused and on track. Economically, running is analogous to life as well in that “you get what you pay for”. It’s important to invest in high quality running shoes as well as the proper dri fit clothing for optimal performance. Although running is a relatively inexpensive sport, like anything else, the deeper you get into it the more opportunities you have to spend money on it. 
 I have a passion for running and plan to run for the rest of my life. Over the years running has truly played a significant and positive role in my life. Not only has running kept me in shape over the course of having three children, but it has kept me sane. I’ve run through good times and stressful times, always finding solace in the rhythmic pounding of my feet. I look forward to each and every one of my runs because I’m grateful for the opportunity to be free from the ebb and flow of life, if only for an hour or two. I prefer to run with a strong bass bumping in my ear, but I sometimes choose to run in silence so I can think through a challenge or focus on a problem that I haven’t had time to solve. One thing I love about running as pure exercise is that it is a flexible sport --- I’ve run with my baby stroller, I’ve run with my children riding their bikes or roller blading beside me and I have run with friends.   Additionally, running provides endless opportunities for fitness challenges. A runner never runs out of chances to improve upon a time or set tougher goals.  I have run numerous road races, including a marathon, and am currently training for my second marathon. After all of my years of running I still have a strong desire to run faster, run farther and conquer more challenges through my sheer effort, time and dedication. I am always seeking ways to improve my running game and can’t imagine not having running in my life. Although my husband can’t understand how anyone in their right mind can actually enjoy running he’s always been supportive of the time and energy my running requires, and for that I’m lucky and thankful.
If you’re seeking a way to reduce body fat, release stress, test your limits or you simply just want to add more cardio to your fitness routine, I encourage you to try running. You just may find yourself addicted to the “runner’s high”, which is really synonymous with the positive effects of endorphins being released into your system, making you feel happy. I hope by sharing my passion for running you have been inspired to get started on a running program of your own. If you get half of what I’ve gotten out of running you will be truly blessed.

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