Dear Readers-This is one of my anonymous, fast, marathon running friends, enjoy. . . I certainly did!
Running Past 40
I will never admit to it in person, but I am “running past 40” too. Sometimes I am running from the reality of it, and other times, I am proud to be running at this age.
Currently, I am running 35-40 miles/week. In off seasons, I run about 25 miles a week- all road running.
Why do I do it? Why do I subject my body and brain to the physical challenge, strain, victory and defeat? I work full time, am active in the community, have children, and have a marriage that needs to come high on my list of priorities. I certainly don’t do it because I have time on my hands.
I run because there is victory with almost every run. Each time I fight the urge to go back to bed at 5am or earlier, I win because I still run. I can face myself the rest of the day knowing I did something good for my body and spirit. I can see the sunrise and experience the world waking. Each time I am tired at the end of the day, and I run anyways, I win! My heart, and my muscles work and I am strong- no matter my speed.
I run because I can. God has blessed me with legs that do as my brain commands, with a heart that pumps, with feet that strategically take the next step over various terrain without thought, and with lungs that work hard filling my body with life. Almost every run, I am thankful for 2 legs that function, and my heart that beats. You see, I have a heart condition, which is medicated, but it means that I have to know my body well and know how it will react to a change in pace or terrain. At this point, running helps keep my heart healthy.
I run because it helps me feel physically and mentally strong. My children and husband take pride in my abilities- I kind of like that. I have hit running goals I never thought possible. My body has done more distance and speed than I ever dreamed.
Studies show long-term physical benefits of running and I am all about denying my age, most of the time. (Run to Stay Young: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2014/12/03/run-to-stay-young/?_r=0 , Running Slows the Aging Clock: http://med.stanford.edu/news/all-news/2008/08/running-slows-the-aging-clock-stanford-researchers-find.html )
Lastly, I run because of the running community. I have found that female runners are strong, successful, ambitious, amazing, mostly positive women. (You have to be pretty ambitious and positive to do this sport.) We encourage each other. We are shaped differently, have different strengths, have different goals, run at different speeds, have different capabilities. The differences go away and we become a team. I have deep respect for my female running friends. They don’t quit, they persevere, consistent in training and in encouragement.
“Surround yourself with people that reflect who you want to be and how you want to feel. Energies are contagious.” – Rachel Wolchin