Dec 9, 2014

Running = Happy

I don't know what it is about running, but it is a guaranteed way to turn a bad day right around to a good one.  Today was a perfect example of this.  I woke up feeling lethargic and just plain mopey.  I read my scriptures and felt a bit better, but somewhere between dropping June off for school and getting back home put me right back in a mood.  Not even Christmas music could brighten my spirits.  I kept feeling like I should go run, especially since I was already dressed in workout clothes, but I talked myself out of it, deciding instead to just sit back in the recliner and watch some TV.  Which then led to eating all kinds of peppermint candy, which just worsened my already dismal mood.

I was feeling bad about myself, which was made worse by my not running when I had the chance--while June was at school.  Even after picking June up, I just couldn't muster up the motivation to get out the door.  Travis went into work taking my only semblance of a baby-sitter with him.  I plopped right back down into the recliner, clicked on the TV, and proceeded to eat junk food when Travis texted and offered to watch June at the gym so I could get in a couple miles.  I decided to take him up on the offer, even though I still just wasn't feeling it.

One Cellucor C4 pre-workout drink later, I was in the car with June and pulling into the base gym.  June ran up to Travis, who informed me I only had 20 minutes.  For a distance runner like myself, 20 minutes doesn't seem like enough time to get a real run in, but I figured that was better than nothing.  In went my earphones and out the door I ran, straight to the track.

Everything with this run seemed to go wrong.  First, my phone wouldn't pick up Pandora at all, and I was eagerly anticipating rocking out to a very specific station.  Then, my GPS watch died before I even hit the first mile.  To a tech-obsessed runner like myself, that is just about the kiss of death as I feel at times that a run not recorded didn't happen.

In spite of these two near-running-deal-breakers, I was elated!  It was amazing just to be outside cruising along, even with malfunctioning gear.  I felt re-engergized in both body and spirit.  I ran and ran, circling that track at who-knows-how-fast.  It didn't matter that I didn't have tunes, and it didn't matter that there was no device recording my progress.  I just enjoyed the run.  I ran until Travis came outside to meet me at the track with June since he had to go into work, and then I ran straight to them scooping June up in my arms for a sweaty post-workout cuddle.

This run helped me to remember why I run.  Forcibly having to go tech-free was a blessing in disguise.  I could feel the strength in my legs and core, the flow of my form, and the rhythm of my breath and foot falls.  The wind even felt amazing, offering resistance one direction to encourage even more strength building, and pushing me the other direction helping to build my speed and increase my stride.

The benefits didn't stop there.  From the second I got home, I was happy and productive.  My self-esteem was much better as was my attitude.  I'm so thankful that the Lord provided me a second opportunity to run today, and that He encouraged me to do so through the promptings of the Spirit.  I know that He loves me and wants me to be happy.  He blessed me with a passion for running so that I could use it as a way to lift my spirits, focus on the positive, and even motivate myself to serve and uplift others.  For me, running = happy.

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