My thoughts on running

So I am starting to get really into running (disclaimer: I’m sorry if you follow me on Twitter and have seen me update about running like a million times. Sorry!).

It used to be I couldn’t run for 10 minutes without feeling like I’m going to die. Now I’m better; I try to run 5km weekly at least, more if I can. I’ve completed a 5k, signed up for a 6k, am looking to join a 10k, and eventually I hope to complete a half marathon and then a full one. 🙂

It’s still not easy for me to run. I’m not a very sporty girl, and that means every time I run my body has to work extra hard. I’ve lost weight but I’m still a fatty putting my body to the limit, and I am constantly outstripped by runners who look like they are grandparents and grannies. I run well on level ground, but hills and slopes always take a toll on me and my timing is almost always worst when I run on uneven terrain.

Still, I never thought I’ll say this, but… I enjoy running. After the first 1 or 2 km, my body understands that damn, I am not going to stop, and it settles into… I don’t know what you call it, but a state of mind? My breathing becomes even, my feet settle into a regular rhythm, and I zone out. That’s when I feel like I can run forever, or at least until the next slope arrives.

I’ve also discovered that running is truly, really, more of a case of mind over body. If I were to have amnesia right now but have my physical body (and stamina) unaffected, I would not be able to run as much as I did now. It takes time to realise that your body can take more than what you think it can (but of course if you are truly breathless don’t push your body more).

After 23 years of physical inactivity, discovering that I can run and that I love running is a fucking epiphany for me. I feel happy, I feel confident; I know I may be a slow runner, but goddamn, I can run, I can run, I CAN RUN!!!

The deepest fear I have right now is that I will suddenly lose this drive, or that I will, carelessly, get an injury that will stop me from running for months. I honestly don’t know if I will start running again if I were to stop for a few months, and that fear is keeping me paranoid. I stretch properly before and after every run, I rest my calves if they are sore… I even started to eat more healthily so that my running can improve. I even hesitated before writing about my sudden running rush, because I am afraid once I write about it, I’ll jinx myself and wake up the next day hating everything about running.

So here goes hoping I didn’t jinx myself by writing about it. 🙂

To all the fellow runners in Singapore and in the world, happy running. It’s a fucking beautiful sport.

PS: Check out The Oatmeal’s hilarious account of his ultramarathon experience.