My Love/Hate Relationship With Running

Running and I have a fickle relationship. Running…
runner
I hate how you taunt me each morning, “When are you going to get to me today?”
That little question hangs in the silences, it screams over any chatter, it teases me with updates of what my friends’ workouts were. That question sits there until I get you done.

Yet I love how you reward me once I’m a sweaty mess. Despite all else the day entails I feel that I have at least accomplished something through you. The endorphins you gift me, even after an easy run, are enough to tide me over until the next day, when you again start this vicious cycle all over again.

I hate you on those days when the first few miles steps make me feel like a Sumo wrestler who is doing something completely against nature and sanity. The days where that act of right-left-right feels foreign…
runner on the beach
Though I love how somewhere along the line I slip into my stride and remember that I am actually a runner.

I hate 400′s. I hate those track workouts, heck I hate the warm-up BEFORE the actual workouts because I know what’s coming. Who are we trying to fool here, Running, I know you’re going to only bring me pain. I hate standing on the line, JUST before I’m about to start the first interval where I have to play into your charade and tell myself, “It’s not going to be that bad,” and then take off.

Though there is NOTHING I love more than being in the middle of a kick @$$ workout, one that I know I’m owning, I’m on a roll and I’m surprising myself at the splits that keep ticking off. The mix of emotions: excitement at doing all I can to keep the times fast so later that night I can write down the averages in my little training log with a smile…the anxiousness at knowing what goes into making those splits ever faster, I’m not quite done after all…the dread of starting the next interval because my legs are burning like an unholy fire.

I hate how you constantly make me question my own mental toughness. “Did I let up a hair when I could have pushed harder? Did I weenie out on that last mile? Was there more I could have given? Was there a lost opportunity for me to cover a move that would have changed the outcome of that race?” I hate the doubts, they can drive you mad.

Though I love how you make me question what is possible…make me start to believe that I can achieve something more…aim higher. Even when at first it seems like an impossibility, you chant it enough, whisper it into my ear so many times, you start to fool me into believing…and then going for it.
track runner
I hate how you so cruelly can make me fall short of those goals. You can callously break my heart with the dead legs on the day that seems to matter the most. You make me watch as my goal slips away, when I know it’s not going to happen.

But I love that there is always tomorrow. And somehow, I take you back because you remind me that there is tomorrow, another chance to go for it. No one minute is the end of the line…I love you enough to take you back and in my heart know I will forever and ever, no matter how many times you may be cruel to me.

I hate the times I have these insane runner withdrawals. Injuries and stretches when you are just out of reach; where my mind and body crave you like some crazy addict. Nothing quite compares to you, they all fall short of your fix.

I love being addicted to you though, there are far worse things out there I know. And when I finally get you back, it’s crazy, but so many other things shift back into place and all is again right in the world.
tough kid
I hate starting a long run that I know is going to be one where I have to keep telling myself I’m only going one mile more. I love the long runs that I get lost in and never want to leave. I hate the epic, tedious, insanely hard workouts that hurt in every way, when even my eyes are burning. I love the entering the last mile of a great tempo run and wanting to really burn it up. I hate the sucky races. I love the awesome races and PR’s. I hate running next to a two-stepper. I love having an amazing training partner. I hate feeling like I’m running too slow. I love the cool-downs that leave you feeling like you’re tripping because you ran hard and great.

Running, I love you because you’re all mine.

1) What’s something you hate about running?

2) What’s something you love about running?

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7 Comments

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7 Responses to My Love/Hate Relationship With Running

  1. What I hate about running…………..? That’s hard, um I’d have to say- injuries.
    What I love about running………….? NOT HARD! How it makes me feel after a really hard race/workout.

  2. I love running because it makes me think that I can do anything.
    I hate running because I allow it to control my mood (i.e. bad runs or injuries make me a beast)!

    • good point on the mood control, a different twist that i didn’t really think of in that light. but it’s true, withholding those endorphins is just cruel! ;)

  3. Well put. There is nothing like being in the middle of a kick-ass run, and there’s nothing more frustrating when your legs are toast and you just can’t get into that zone, especially as I get older. I always figure the recovery runs, just putting in the miles, have to be done to feel the high of the better runs. Like a heroin addict who is waiting for fresh veins in order to get high again, I need to rest up my legs and freshen them up so I can blast through the next workout with all the benefits. There’s nothing like the high of the middle of a nice run, or the high of a negative split marathon.

    • thanks for the comment, Mark, and well put!! i don’t think there is anything quite like the feeling (and the wobbly legs) of a hard earned PR. :)

  4. Pingback: I Run For Bribes…Bribes and Blackmail too I Guess |

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