In elementary school every year we had physical fitness day. It was a day filled with horrible fitness activities that always made me feel terrible about myself. I KNOW I’m not flexible. Do my classmates need to know the specifics of how far past my knees I can reach? Pull ups? With my spaghetti arms? I’d be lucky to do one. But the worst was the running. We had to run one lap around the field and I always, always threw up. I even used to think “Oh this run. I’m going to throw up. Yep. Here I go. I’m throwing up.” It was like clockwork.
I wouldn’t say I was a lazy kid either. I did TONS of exploring in our suburban DC neighborhood. I’d ride my bike or scooter to my favorite hills or parks or friends’ homes. My mom took us the pool every day in the summer and I prided myself on how far I could swim without coming up for air. I had my fitness activities…that I never thought of them as fitness activities…I was just having fun.
When I was in high school we lived in Vermont, and although I did not attend one of the schools that brought the kids skiing every Friday for their stand-in PE class (that was Dave’s school…lucky!), I did go to school with sporty kids. And because of their sporty peer-pressuring ways, I joined a softball team. Then a field hockey team. And I ran track one season too. I still wasn’t thrilled with running just for runnning’s sake…but I enjoyed being active.
In college I started to run. I trained for and ran a half marathon my sophomore year. Running was a regular part of my college lifestyle. I’d run with friends, or run alone. I’d run the trails in the woods, or the track in the athletic complex, or the roads around the school. But let’s be clear…I was never a runner.
And I’m still not. But, I’ve started up running again. It’s been so long that I’ve run regularly that I started back up in the same shoes I used in college. Shoes that were 15 years old. When my knees stared giving me trouble I stopped running, read a book on running, and then with Christmas money bought some new shoes. Now I’m out there, about 3 days a week aiming for 3 miles a run and I’m enjoying it a lot. I listen to music and take photos of my shoes (ha!) and run, run, run.
It’s pretty great. And I’ve yet to throw up from it. :)