Thursday, September 13, 2012

Running has the power to change your life.


"Running has the power to change your life. It will make you fitter, healthier, even happier."

Selene Yeager, "Let's Get Started," May 2010 issue of Runner's World


When I posted about the kids first week of school, I mentioned that I was training for a half marathon.  This quote made me think about my running career.  When I told the kids I was training, Swim Chick said, "Oh, I thought you were just running to get some fat off of you."  What kids won't say!  I chuckled and said that is why I started running again, but yes I am training for something.  I started to think about my running career.

I miss running with my old teams.  I went to the University of Wisconsin at Eau Claire.  I had been a cross country and track runner in high school and did not know if I wanted to do it in college.  I was young and naive.   Both in high school and my first year or two of college.  To me school was school, it was always hard.  I was not the best studier and am hoping that I am teaching my kids better habits, so they know better when they decide if they want to go to college.  Anyway, I was about 110 pounds at 5 feet 3 inches on graduation day from high school.  By November/Thanksgiving Break I had gained way more than the Freshman Fifteen!  I was topping the scales at 130/135.  I went home for the break and ran into the boy who dumped the day before I left for college.  He said hello, and that I looked good, did I gain some weight?  WHAT?!?!  I had some choice words for him.  And those that know me, would have been shocked by my choice words.

That night at the dance I decided, I had better join the track team.  I grew up on a farm, ate whatever I wanted and up to that point didn't worry about my weight.  I also knew that if I wanted to continue to eat what I wanted I need to run.  I join this amazing team of women and ran long distance.  Coming from a small farming community to the university, I was afraid to get too far from campus for fear of getting lost in town.  With the track team, I found places on runs that I had heard of be never ventured out to see.  It was great.  I got invited to parties and no one cared if I drank with them or not.  They all seemed to like that I was there.  When I was about to turn 21, the legal drinking age, my track friends took me out and made sure I was safe.  These women became my new family and I am greatful every day that they were there for me.  I miss them. 

After graduation, I continued to run.  I have completed 4 full marathons in my running career.  I have completed one half marathon and am currently training for another.  This quote just made me feel like sharing how running has made me happier and fitter, although that is a work in progress.

Off n Running,
AnnMarie