When I began running just two years ago, I never thought I would be where I am today. I would 'run' maybe two miles before I decided I needed to stop. In reality, I wasn't really running. I would run and then stop and then start back up again. Needless to say, my muscles were highly confused and, as a result, I was always in severe pain.
Before I began running, my lifestyle wasn't the epitome of health. I was too busy with school and work to have enough strength for exercise. However, I knew I wanted to get in better shape before I began college. Slowly, I began to implement exercise into my life and trust me, it was awful. During the first few weeks I wanted to give up more than ever, but I knew I had to keep on. I had quit all other sports in high school because they were too aggressive for me, but with running the only person I was competing against was myself. And I just had to win the fight against the part of me that wanted to throw in the towel.
Just one month into running, I became officially addicted. Even though I would barely be able to feel my knees, blisters had developed on my feet and my neck was throbbing, I could not stop. Running gave me a reason to wake up early every morning, and I'll admit I sort of enjoyed the pain I felt after each long run. Despite the pain running gave me, it made me feel healthier, cleaner and more alive.
By fall of freshman year, I began running with a friend from high school who was an avid runner and who used to be just like me. The first day we ran she took me on a seven mile route. That was by far the worst running experience I have ever had. I couldn't even go three miles without stopping, but I tried my best to keep up with her 8:00 mile pace. I some how finished the run three hours later and I knew it was time for a change.
My friend trained me to have better form, so I could run longer and faster. The pain I felt when I first began running was a result of my lack of good form. Form is the most important aspect of running. If a runner wants to be able to endure more miles and run them faster, fixing his or her's form is the first place to start.
Miranda, my running partner, told me if I fixed my form I would be able to run forever. By the end of my first semester of college I could run 5 miles without stopping, and if wasn't the winter months I knew I could have gone longer. Before I knew it I was signing up for a half marathon and adding on more and more miles as the weeks went on and spring began.
My goal with this blog is to provide advice for those who are considering to add running to their schedule. Running is easy to become addicted to, but first starting is a difficult task to conquer. I know this because I have been there. I have had the sore muscles, joints, blisters, moments of dehydration and even bouts of dry heaving. I know what it's like to run in 90 degree weather and 20 degree weather. I have had great runs and several frustrating runs, where I just wanted to stop. But I could never stop. What kept me going? Feeling alive. Each time my mind says, "Stop Kalea, this hurts," I say to myself shut up and run and I keep on moving.