Saturday, August 20

Why I run and race

I recently took a trip to Ouray, CO.  I found a place on this earth perfect for me where people love to be outdoors and hike and enjoy life and get outside at all hours no matter what.  While I didn't run any while in Colorado (even thought I tried to get my friends to stay an extra day so I could run a 1/2 marathon) I did summit my first ever 14er on my first ever true hike.  It was amazing and I felt so accomplished to achieve something that is probably close to as rare as running marathons, if not more.
On our way home while we were driving through the mountains - I started reflecting on my achievement of the mountain and how it relates to my running and racing.  I came to the realization that the reason I love to run and race so much is because it is the one thing in my life I feel I have complete control over.  No one and nothing but myself can affect my running completely.  Sure weather, lack of sleep, other conditions can affect a run - but ultimately it is just me and the road.  If I finish a race, if I PR, if I push myself harder is only controlled by my own mind.  I love the control I give myself while running and how rewarding it is to succeed.
Much is the same for hiking.  While I went in a group of 3 people, only I could ultimately control if I made it to the top.  There was one section where you had to climb up a rock slide - not a big deal I don't mind crawling up rocks; but then on the way down you have to come down this slide of rocks - much scarier!  One of the hikers in my group put up the white flag and said she wasn't going.  I had the choice to say "yea I agree I'm scared and this is crazy" but instead I said "I'm doing this, i've come this far and I'm not failing now!"  The reward was a marvelous view from the top of Uncompahgre Peak in the San Juan mountains.
Everytime I succeed at something I put my mind to I'm rewarded.  Most of the time it is with a medal and crossing the finish line, but this time it was with a marvelous view - and a deeper understanding of who I am.

1 comment:

Ashley and Patrick said...

Awesome view, awesome hike! I think we all love that "accomplished" feeling we get from running. Just wait til you run the full marathon...you'll be on top of the world!