My love-hate relationship with running

By Amari D. Pollard

Today I went for a run—I hated it.

Well, not every minute, but for the most part I hated the overall experience. Running and myself have had a rocky relationship throughout the years, especially during my off-season of lacrosse when I don’t have coaches to constantly force me to run sprints.

During the summer we usually stay together for two, three weeks tops before we—I decide I need a break. Generally I’m a lazy person, so physical activity has never been my favorite thing to do. It’s never easy trying to love something that you actually detest. But the break never lasts long. We eventually reconcile, and all is fine for another couple of weeks or so before we part ways again.

It’s a vicious cycle, but I don’t have the heart to make it stop. In all honesty, I don’t have the power to stop permanently. The minute I stop running is the minute I start eating, and start gaining the weight, and soon enough my ass won’t be able to run up and down the lacrosse field. I’ll be bent over wheezing in the middle of the field like a cigarette junkie.

The funny thing is, while I may hate running I’m actually great at it. Not to toot my own horn, but I’m fast. And its not because I have a mythical magical extra ligament, that’s for sure. I think it has something to do with the fact that I’m Jamerican [American and Jamaican], and Jamaica and the United States produce the fastest people in the world. However, because you’re good at something doesn’t mean you have to like doing it.

One of the most difficult things about running, for me at least, is when I get back into the routine. I don’t know if this happens to everyone, but when I start running after being inactive for a while my legs start to itch. It’s not like when you itch at a mosquito bite, the irritation is deep and no matter how much or how hard I itch my legs, it won’t stop. So, unfortunately, if I want to be able to run without itching, that means I have to do it every single damn day. It’s basically like be forced/tricked into making it a routine.

Although at times I can be absolutely and irrefutably in hate with running, I have to admit, there is nothing better than the feeling I get after finishing a run. Hallelujah, it’s over! I’m done! The sweat dripping down my face, clogging up my pores, it’s disgusting and I don’t care. I feel accomplished.

It’s hard, forcing myself to turn off the TV and stop eating the Chipotle that I promised myself I wouldn’t eat for at least a month [I have no willpower, it’s just too good!], but I do it. It’s hard running the entire distance of my neighborhood, without stopping, but I do it. And if it’s sunny, it makes the affair so much easier. It’s a great time to take in the scenery and reflect, sometimes even catch up with the neighbors.

If it’s a really good day, sometimes I feel like I’m shooting a Nike or Gatorade commercial. Running through the street with the wind blowing through my incredibly wild yet tame hair, while I sprint along to the sound of Justin Timberlake’s angelic voice singing in my ear. I feel beautiful, I feel healthy.

So I guess running isn’t so bad—once you get past the running part.

 

Picture courtesy ofCourtesy of  www.womensrunning.competitor.com

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