I get high, Runner’s High
I’ve been running as a hobby and sport for a while now. At first I always had this connotation of running as the worst possible thing that was ever created in this world. I dreaded running even a mile. I couldn’t do more than a mile. My mind would not let me continue pass that one mile mark. I would literally collapse after the mile having thought I ran fast but realistically I only ran roughly an 8 minute mile (which is horrible compared to real runners). But that was when I didn’t run religiously. Now, running is my life. It’s my passion and love. How in the world did I go from absolutely hating the idea of running even a mile to running 13 miles as a fun activity.
The answer is within the Runner’s High. This feeling is unexplainable. It’s hard to explain with words. You can only experience it to fully understand. BUT, I will try my best to get this message across.
Many people regard running the way I used to. They hate it. Simple as that. It’s tiring, and sweaty, and painful, and nothing good. It’s quite funny actually. My favorite response I always get is, “You actually enjoy that??” Yes, you bet I do. Now you’re probably still wondering how I got to where I am especially with such a bad opinion of running to begin with. Well, here’s my story:
It started when my family friend whom I’ve known since childhood took me to a run. (I quite regard him as my mentor as he has guided me through many aspects of my growth) He knew I hated running. I jested and said I was more of a short distance runner. Short distance as in here to that tree over there. He knew I didn’t dare try it. So he took me and told me to bring my skateboard and said I can skate while he runs. I thought, “Ok I can do that.” So we went and we were parked along the curb of the beach. He was getting ready at his car, putting his shoes on, getting his music and what not. When we were about to run I decided something that would change my life. I thought, “Why not. I have running shoes, basketball shorts, and a tank top.” I threw the skateboard back in the car and told my mentor I’d give running a try. His jaw dropped and he stared at me. Judging by the look on his face he was shocked but he was very excited. We walked along the beach trail for a bit and stretched out. Keep in mind my mentor is somewhat a runner himself so he has experience with longer distance. He cautioned me and told me I can go as far as I feel like it. I said ok and we started. An hour later I find myself half a mile in front of my mentor finishing the 6th mile. After I was done I was sitting there just trying to process what happened. My mentor was shocked just as much as I was. I came in with the conceived notion of hating running, and just ran 6 miles like it was nothing. AND IT FELT GREAT. I don’t know what it was whether it might’ve been the cool breeze, the beach sunset, the other runners, or the motivation but they combined in a symphony that made running…enjoyable.
Since then I’ve found this running talent that I worked at and came to love. I craved more. I was hungry for more running, more miles. I started increasing slowly and training. Obviously running wasn’t like the easiest thing, I had to get my muscles working and build them to be more tolerant for these miles. I saw improvements both in my running and my times and I got addicted. I can’t stop because I want to keep improving. I can’t explain the feeling of breaking your personal record time of a certain distance. It’s just a gush of reassurance that all that hard work paid off. And that’s what keeps me going. The sense of achievement and hunger for more achievement feeds my continuous need for this sport I once hated. I can almost guarantee once you hit that runner’s high you’ll become more addicted to it than any drug out there. That perfect breezy weather, the perfect pace, the perfect tempo, and the motivation will all mesh to create more nostalgia than ever. There will be no pain, no vigorous workout or sweat but just a nice upbeat run/jog where you can just soak in all that amazing feeling. It’s where you can just look and enjoy where you’re running and be with yourself and your thoughts. I can’t come close to explaining it. I don’t even know what it is but it happens. Most people give up before they tap into the runner’s high. They claim it’s to hard but it’s also a mental strength as much as it is physical. You just have to push through and train and eventually you will love the sport like many have.
Not only do I encourage giving running a chance, I want YOU to try something different that you think you’d never try. Who knows, you might have a hidden talent for something you think you hate. Don’t be afraid to give things a chance. Work at it and don’t give up right away and chances are you might probably end up enjoying it. Maybe it’ll change your life. Because for me running has. It’s a time where I can get away from other stress and just clear my mind. Find your own high (natural high) that gives you the most euphoria and build on it and DON’T give up. Keep trying. There were many occasions in cross country where the practice was so difficult that I wanted to get out of there. But after the tough workout, I would feel great that I did it and that’s what keeps me going. No matter how badly you do or may fail, get up and keep practicing.
I’ve learned a lot from running other than the physical aspect of how to run. It’s an awesome sport and I encourage you to try it even if you may think you hate it. Tap into that runner’s high and I guarantee you will love it.
This blog was inspired by a really cool blog called Tribal Warrior Poets. The have really cool and interesting blog posts that you’ll have fun reading. Check them out here: http://tribalwarriorpoets.wordpress.com/