4 Mar 2013

Why Are Some of Us Not Happy With Just One?!

Yesterday when I was running lap after lap around Victoria Park I started wondering why some of us has this urge to go longer, get stronger, challenge ourselves a little bit more. While some of us are happy with doing one lap around the park three times a week, but some of us have this urge to do five. What's the difference between those two groups of people and why is there a difference?

When I first started running after having recovered from my eating disorder I almost straight away signed up for the Stockholm Marathon. I'd never run more than 10k before. I was equally scared and excited and stuck, almost religiously, to my training program. After that I was hooked, and I've not looked at running the same way since. I think that this need for perfection partly comes from my previous life as a rider. My then trainer was never happy with half measures - either you were in, or you weren't. It was alright to fail, just as long as you tried and in the process gave it your all. Once you'd reach one goal you set another and you never, ever, settled.

As a person I'm very much a Type A-personality. Competetive, achivement addicted, driven. Yesterday when I started running my laps I felt very focused on the distance. 20 miles, no less. The run was a means to an end but as the endorphines started flowing the balance shifted. All of a sudden I found myself less focused on the distance and more focused on how it felt like I could run forever, and the contentment and enjoyment that brought. I saw kids running around and how the simple pleasure of running brought them so much happiness. I went from 'being on a run' to just' running' and the kilometres flew by. When I ended my run I had done 20 miles, as planned, but that wasn't the best ting about that run. The best thing was the happiness I found just by running.

Regardless if you're one of those people who run five laps of the park or that person who runs one lap every now and then, the most important thing should always be to appreciate the happiness running brings. Stop demanding so much of yourself - not everyone are fortunate enough to be able to run, so remember you are one of the lucky ones next time you go for a run.

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