I never quite considered myself a runner. Growing up, it was always this thing I had to do as part of the workout for whatever sport I was involved in.
As a cheerleader, we used to run around the football field to warm up.
Once I started playing tennis, running was always part of conditioning during off- and pre-season training.
Then when I joined crew, running was the daily warmup/form of torture. I remember when we used to have to run what we called the “pier run.” Everyone hated it and it seemed like it went forever. In reality, I think it was just five miles.
In fact, when I quit crew, I joined my high school’s track team. Because I couldn’t go from crew to nothing, I joined, but I never really LIKED it. I just needed something to keep me going.
In college, I quit running. Whenever I’d go to the gym, I would hop on an elliptical and call it a day.
For some reason during the summer of 2010, I had this strange desire to start running again. The first run sucked. Like really sucked. But I knew it could only go up from that first run.
Then I traveled to Boston, and while taking a walk one day with some friends, we decided to pick and race, train and run it together. For some reason, I suggested the Veteran’s Day 10K, which was being held on my 25th birthday. Why I wanted to spend my birthday running 6.2 miles, I’m not sure.
But I trained, ran that race, and never looked back. The sense of accomplishment when I crossed that finish line was something I can’t describe.
That was just the start of my running journey.
The highlight of my running journey was in February 2012, when I participated in the Disney Princess Half Marathon. I ran with two friends, and it was by far the coolest race I’ve ever run. The experience of running through Magic Kingdom = priceless.