If You Run, You Are A Runner
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If You Run, You Are A Runner

My journey finding confidence in the sport I love.

If You Run, You Are A Runner
Comfortable Club

Some people hate running. Others love it. Some hate it but still do it. Others love it but don't do it. Running is a sport that becomes more of a lifestyle. There's a different between practicing and doing. When you go for a run, you're not practicing running, you are actually running.

I've been a runner for a decent portion of my life. I started running in the 8th grade, jumping on my family's incredibly old treadmill in our giant walk in closet most days after school. I then ran cross country in high school, ending up in the last spot on varsity every year, and running times that I can't even imagine accomplishing now. Once I went to college, my running hit a rocky spot. I ran most of my freshman year, accomplishing a RAGNAR relay during that time, but sophomore year I was burnt out. I had dealt with a lot of ankle injuries, and I just couldn't get myself to get back out there after. However, this school year I decided to take up running again. I haven't ran more than four miles this year. I train at a relatively slow pace. I also only run three to four days a week. However, after a 5k this weekend went way better than I expected, I realized that even though I am not at my peak level of fitness anymore, I am still a runner.

I'm a runner because I run. That's all there is to it. If you run once a week, or everyday, you are a runner. If you run one mile, three miles, or 26.2 miles, you are a runner. There is no milestone you have to reach to become a runner. You just simply have to get out there and run, and that's what I love so much about the running community. The running community is one of the most accepting athletic communities out there. People of all ages and walks of life are members, and it's honestly inspiring.

I might be a smaller person and a former varsity runner, but I honestly can never run a marathon. I absolutely could train for it and do it, but my body can't handle it. My knees are turned weirdly which effects my running stride. My cross country coach always said not to fix what wasn't broken, but when it comes to running for 26.2 miles, I would probably injure myself for life. I also have very weak ankles. I have sprained or broken my ankles countless times since I began running. Thus, though to run a marathon seems to be the ultimate runners goal, I can't accomplish this goal simply because I would never be able to run again. However, despite my inability to run a marathon, I am still a runner.

I've run ten miles before, and I hope to run a half marathon one day. I do know though that if I do, I have to go at it a lot easier than I normally run. I can't run at an eight minute mile pace like I did for the 5k this weekend, I'm going to have to go slow so I can listen to my body and not hurt myself. But that's ok. I am still a runner.

What I'm trying to get at it is that if you ever doubt whether or not you're a runner, I want to tell you this: you are absolutely a runner. Never doubt yourself based on your limitations. Everyone who runs is a runner. I go through days of doubt, but I want to use my doubt to tell others not to doubt themselves. You are a runner. Never forget that.

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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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