There is someone special who is responsible for my love of running. Someone who was my inspiration to take those first step. Someone besides me of course.
Since I’m not sure how she’d feel about me using her name we’ll just call her M. I’m wondering how futile it is to hide her identity because anyone I work with will know exactly who I’m talking about, but I’ll do it anyway.
M and I work together at the Y. She’s a really sweet woman who I always enjoy spending time with. Back in 2012, when I was considering the idea of becoming a runner, we worked together a lot and she would always try to convince me that I should run.
It’s great exercise. It’s fun. She named all the reasons why I should just get started and my reply to her was, “when both boys are in school.”
M asked me why I would wait and I had a legitimate reason. Who was going to look after the boys while I was running? Bill was still at the golf course at the time and I couldn’t always depend on his schedule for anything.
But finally M’s words hit home somewhere and I decided to give it a go. I’ll work around the kids and Bill’s crazy work life. I’ll figure it out.
I downloaded the C25K app and started on the track at the Y. I was there mostly because they would watch the boys while I would run and also because I was terrified of the roads.
The longer the distances became, the more running inside became like a chore so when Logan was in preschool I would run through my parent’s neighborhood. It was quiet without much traffic to worry about and that’s when I truly saw what M had been trying to show me all along. Running is awesome. It’s freeing. It’s fun. It’s empowering. It’s everything I needed, mostly because it’s much cheaper than therapy or booze.
Oh and the weight loss was pretty sweet too.
Since I started running I’ve finished quite a few shorter races. I’ve completed The Broad Street Run (10 miler) twice (2013 & 2015) and I’ve completed four half marathons.
M and I talk running just about every time we see each other now and it’s been like that for years. We cheer each other’s progress and achievements and give words of encouragement to get each other through the rough patches.
She is my runspiration and the reason I got started instead of putting it off for years and years. This kind and caring woman will never know how grateful I am for her encouragement to start and all the kind words she spoken to me since. I truly feel that without her influence I wouldn’t have ever started to run.
My dream is to pay it forward. My dream is to give to someone else what M has given to me, the love of a sport and a community that keeps me both physically and mentally healthy.
If I can inspire just one person to start running then I’ll be over the moon excited.
Do you have a person in your life who has inspired you to step out of your comfort zone and try something new?