I Am A Runner

1075164_10151662482792917_997403179_n

I am a runner.

I give you this information not to inform you of one of the many ways I fill my time, but to tell you who I am, how my brain works, how I function.

I am a runner.

You see, when I say I’m a runner, I don’t mean it in the way somebody who welds metal together would refer to themselves as a welder. To me, it’s a definition of personality, of who I am, of my mental makeup.

I am a runner.

In my experience, people who identify as runners are several things. As with most things, there are exceptions to prove the rule, but here’s what I’ve found:

Runners are kind, good people. Runners will literally give you the shirt off their back or the keys to their car. Runners will gladly open their home to you if you need a place to crash and feed you whatever crazy raw vegan paleo diet you’re on this month. Runners will always pitch in to help a worthy cause, will always show up an hour early and stay two hours late to make sure a task gets done. To cite recent events, look at the 2012 New York Marathon or the Boston Marathon bombings. These are obviously extreme examples, but the actions of many runner in the aftermath of those events sprang forth from a culture filled with kind, good people.

Runners are focused. Runners thrive on projects and tasks. Set a goal for a runner, then back and watch that goal be achieved. Granted, the journey may look different than you envisioned, but it WILL be achieved. Runners ignore the distractions and push through to keep the task at hand the priority.

Runners are disciplined and dedicated. It takes double-D’s (see what I did there?) to setup and follow a training schedule lasting several months. It takes dedication to beat the sun up at 5:30 a.m., strap on a pair of shoes, and get in that 5 mile training run before work. It takes discipline to hit the gym four nights a week to log some time on the dreadmill. It takes discipline and dedication to eat that salad when you’re surrounded by people chewing down fast-food and pizza.

Runners are resolved. Covering miles of distance armed with nothing but a pair of shoes and your own manpower is an intense, difficult experience. It takes a rather healthy amount of determination to run, say, a 10k. When a runner sets out, it takes a Significant Event to make them stop.

Runners are some of the most mentally tough people on the planet. This holds true whether its a 5k, 50k, or 100 mile run. Runners push through the pain, ignore every muscle in their body yelling at them to quit, and silence that inner voice telling them they’re done.

The past 5 years I’ve actively been running, I’ve learned more about myself and my inner makeup than I have in the previous 2+ decades combined. I attribute this almost entirely to running. The lessons I’ve learned about myself on long runs are invaluable, things I’ll be grateful for forever.

I have a hard time imagining my life without running now. It is all encompassing, it is who I am, not just what I do.

I am a runner.

969125_656487837696771_1607646366_n

To follow Nick’s current running adventure, check out Thirty for 30. 47778_573874169291472_1834832718_n

Leave a Reply