An Open Letter To The Sport That I'll Always Love
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Dear Running, I'll Always Love You

When I laced up my running shoes, I signed my self to you.

Dear Running, I'll Always Love You
Taylor Werges

Dear running,

When I first was introduced to you, the thought of you terrified me. I was not sure how I could learn to love you. You are such a simple sport and yet so complex all at once. Not everyone will meet you because most won't dare to endure the anguish and agony you bring. Those same people also haven't met your good side because it takes hard work.

You are not forgiving. If I miss a workout, you make sure my coach knows. If I spend a lot of time with you, it shows. You are brutal, but provide so much reward in the end. You have brought the blood, sweat and tears right out of me. You have made me raw and vulnerable at times. You have taught me that success is not given, it is earned. From you, I have learned there are no shortcuts, no timeouts and no easy way to the top. For that, I am so grateful, because I have learned the meaning of the phrase "hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard."

After all that, you bring out the smile and happy tears from success and PRs.

Once you bring success, I begin to crave you and chase the high you bring. I long for that feeling of a new PR or hitting all my splits in a workout. I get hungry for the feeling right before a race when I am raw for all to see. You turned me into a person who is hungry for success.

You have taught me that with success comes dedication. To be the best, I must do what others won't and to do that is a mental battle.

You are 80% mental and 20% physical. You know that my legs can go much faster and for a lot longer. When I mentally shut down, you begin to reveal the raw and vulnerable pain you bring. However, when I am mentally tough, I learn to love the pain. I must embrace the pain you bring and push past that threshold and enter the point of no return. When my body enters the flight or fight situation, it is my job to choose to fight. To fight like hell. The whole race is mental, but at this point there is no giving up, the only option is to finish the race.

During a race, you send my bones and muscles into overdrive. My body is in fight mode and you begin to transform my body into a robot. My body is no longer my own because I chose to fight you because you have captivated my body. The reactions you cause in my body cannot be explained or felt in any other sport. Just writing this sends chills up my spine. No one but you knows the thoughts and the reactions that occur during a race in my brain. You bring the "runners high," the process in which you trigger my brain to release mood-altering hormonal dopamine. A beautiful thing.

While you are all hard work, you also bring play. You gather some of the kindest and smartest people together to engage in your crazy. Because of you, I have formed bonds and you have created families. You've created a new community of people that come together for one common thing, you.

While you bring at times what feels like unbearable pain, I could not love you more. Once I had a taste of you, I realized I will love you for life. In a way, I am married to you, rain or shine, motivated or not, I am devoted to you forever. I love you running.



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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.


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