I never understood the hype of those people who are addicted to running. How could people just want to run for fun? As I would pass them on the roads in my car, I would laugh and think they were crazy. Then the day came, and I became one of those crazy people. That girl who was running in the blistering heat of the day for miles on end filled with joy for life, That girl was now me.
My best mornings are ones where I wake up before the sun rises, slip on my running shoes, and race the rays of sunshine to be the first one to hit the pavement. There is something about the warmth of the morning hitting my skin, the silence that surrounds me, and the peace I attain being in the company of just my breath. It's one of the simple pleasures of life that I am so grateful to be able to enjoy every day. I heard about how running can make you happy but I never quite understood the extent of which it worked. That feeling they call a runner's high, well it's the real deal! I want to share with you what I noticed since I began walking and running on a regular basis this past year.
1. I'm Happier - Especially right after a workout. That feeling is pretty much unbeatable. I could be having one of the worst days ever, but the calmness I gain somehow enables me to realize that everything is ok again. The world isn't crumbling above me anymore, and I can face things head on with clarity.
2. Better Sleep: If you know me at all this is a great accomplishment. I used to view sleep as my enemy, but now we have become very close friends. I apologize now to all the people I've kept up all night in the past talking their ears off because I couldn't fall asleep. Now sleep is something I look forward to doing. My body has used its energies for the day, and I am excited to rest and recharge for my next morning run.
3. Productivity: My days now seem to fly by so quickly, and everything gets done a lot more efficiently. I don't even recognize who I have become. Accomplishing tasks has become less intimidating. I suppose that's the benefits of starting your day well rested and clear headed. I guess my mother was right with all that bedtime mumbo jumbo.
4. Health: Having gone through depression, anemia, hypoglycemia, recurring kidney infections, and the list goes on. Also coming from a family where diabetes, cancer, and high blood pressure is the leading cause of death, I have become very aware that taking care of my body is vital to my health. Since having started running incorporated with a healthy balanced diet, I have only seen good results. I took up walking one mile a day in December of last year and started eating healthier just because it made me happy. Since then my body has regained balance, I have dropped 25 pounds, but most of all I feel phenomenal!
5. Goal Setting: The day I decided to take control of my health was when I was determined to take back control of my life. Being able to be in the driver seat of my life is empowering. I know it may sound silly saying that running did all of this, but it's the small steps that make the most difference. Putting on my running shoes each morning and taking those small steps for myself allowed me to find my worth. I took the time for me to make the changes necessary for my growth. Those small changes made me realize that by living with clear intention I could be refined and overcome much harder struggles that lie ahead.
I could go on and on telling you all the benefits I have noticed, but I have to remember this is a blog post, not a Novel so I will stop here. To stay motivated, I have set a goal to complete my first half-marathon on June 26th. I will keep you posted on race day of how that goes!
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