My blogging buddy Ricardo wrote a blog post the other day as he prepares for his first 50k in April, reflecting on what motivates him to run. He reached out to me asking if I wanted to share my thoughts on why I run—perfect timing as I taper for my half marathon this weekend and then 50k the next.
I started drafting this post by compiling a list of things that I like about running and thus what I thought motivated me, but something felt off, forced. Sure, I love the scenery when I trail run and the camaraderie of my running group, but I’m not sure that feeling is exclusive to running. I can feel that same happiness without running 60 miles a week, right?
I think when it really comes down to it, I am always running in search of that moment where I pushed myself further than I thought I could. You know, the one when you would step back, look at yourself and say “damn, I am pretty fucking incredible.” I found that feeling for a while after I completed my first marathon, but as long runs got easier I started to wonder if I can do more.
I revel in that feeling of amazement and accomplishment when my lungs are burning after a speed workout that I didn’t think I could finish, or when I am a human salt lick after running 20+ miles in smothering humidity. That feeling of surprise when I am too busy sharing stories with my friends to notice that an hour has passed. That feeling I experienced this past weekend when I realized that come hell or high water I will be an ultra runner by the end of the month.
So I guess I run to toe that line between “dedicated” and “insane.” You are only given one body, and it is capable of some pretty amazing things if you try. I’m curious to see what I can ask it to do, and that unknown motivates me.
Now it’s your turn—why do you run?