I canNOT believe it’s already Wednesday, can YOU? Man, just think, about 10 more days until Crawlin’ Crab Half!! AHHHHH!!!! (Insert sound effects) Well, Hello Ms. Nerves, did you have a nice vacation?? Haven’t felt ya for a while!! No offense, but haven’t missed ya!! Eeeek!!

Alright, SO today I thought I’d share my running story with y’all! This was my second post ever on Stamped with a Heart (I think), so most of you guys haven’t read it! Enjoy!! (Note: BTW, my right foot feels much better! In fact, I ran 11 miles yesterday!! Woohoo!!)

GET SOME PERSPECTIVE: MY RUNNING STORY:

If you dislike running or another form of exercise, GIVE IT A TRY! Get over the dramatics of it all and get some PERSPECTIVE!

Kristin yoga

“Do I HAVE to run?”

“Yes!”

“NOOOOO!!!”

Okay, so many years back, this short, dramatic dialogue was between me and my swim coach. Just thinking about running made me sweat (and that was before the workout began). Imagine what happened when I actually ran! NOT PRETTY, but that wasn’t to say that I had terrible running form because honestly, I didn’t. I ran quite well in fact. I was smooth and efficient, practical in my pacing, and very willing to commit to the distance (despite hating it the entire time). I had lots of speed, too, and in the eighth grade, held the mile record for my middle school.

IMPRESSED?

Well, I wasn’t! No amount of running success made me like it ANY better and no sum of compliments made me willing to race around a track over and OVER again either.

Random people would say, “You need to get THAT GIRL on a track team!”

My mom would respond, “Well, I really don’t think Kristin enjoys running that much.”

And I would counter, “THANK YOU MOMMY!” (Of course with a huge smile on my face)

WHERE AM I GOING WITH THIS (I’m glad you asked)?

What I’m TRYING to explain is that my first experiences with running were intense; therefore, I adopted the idea (at a very young age) that running was TORTURE: I didn’t run because I wanted to, I ran because I HAD to. Growing up as a swimmer, gymnast, and dancer, running was a means to staying in shape, something that my coaches made me do EVEN during the off season (usually during summer on VERY hot days). This did not sit well with me, so the more I was forced to run, the more I hated it.

I remember running around and around… AND around and around my gymnastic gym’s pebbly parking lot in a hundred degree weather thinking WHAT A WASTE OF TIME it was to be running in circles versus running across a fun, bouncy floor into a round-off, back handspring, layout. I mean REALLY! What could be better than bouncing WHILE running? That just makes running worthwhile! Okay, so it’s NOT quite as fun as running on a trampoline, but still it’s way (WAY) more interesting than running on hard, little rocks. OUCH!

Another NOT so fond memory of running is thinking about all the aches and pains I had: Trust me; switch leaping across a hard dance floor, then running three miles on rigid, uneven pavement is definitely NOT something you want to try. It hurts, plus, is very bad on your knees (yet another reason running was not my number one). There were many moments while growing up I wondered whether my knees would make it and let me just say, to my dismay, I found out the hard way in college.

So as I grew up and into a young college going lady, I saw lots of students running around campus. These images of non student-athletes running on their own free will made me question, “WHY???!!!” I didn’t understand what it was about running that made it SO appealing to people. I came to the conclusion that they MUST be running (on their own free will nonetheless) because of its calorie burning benefits, you know, so that they COULD eat that huge piece of good old dining hall pizza. RIGHT?

Well, not necessarily… Some of my friends begged to differ, so I decided to give running another chance, you know, the college try. The same day that my friends scorned me, THEN informed me about the benefits of running (and NOT for its pizza eating rights), I decided to go for a run: I threw on my chic running clothes, wrapped a dark, blue watch around my wrist, double knotted my neon yellow shoe laces, then raced out the door. I ran four miles UP and DOWN the long, hilly road I lived on, but to my dismay was uncomfortable the ENTIRE time: I was tensed and groggy, uninspired and unwilling to commit to any more miles.

A few months later during dance practice, having danced in a few college shows already, my right knee cap popped out and rotated all the way to the right. Frantic with the uncertainty of WHY, I blamed the entire thing on running. I was angry and mad and NEVER willing to run again (well, so I thought). The fact of the matter was that running did not do that to my knee, well not entirely; it was a culmination of swimming breaststroke, pounding the floor in gymnastics and dance, and also from over stretching.

Time past and YOGA set in: My first year out of college I taught High School; the stresses of the year weakened my mind. I was overwhelmed and in dire need of a mental tune up, so I began practicing yoga. Yoga re-centered my soul and gave me the incentive to open my heart to running for the first time: After my knee recovered I decided to give running another chance. I applied the yogic principles to my daily life and to my runs: the breathing, the calmness, the meditation; my life FINALLY began to fall in rhythm with my breath.

No longer was running something that uncomfortably got me from Point A to Point B; it became something magical, like watching fireworks explode for the VERY first time. My new found connection with nature (thanks to yoga) was a truly endearing experience; the sway of the trees, the sounds of the animals, the little drops of rain that fell inspired each and every run. Not to mention FINALLY my body relaxed, my breathe smoothed, and my eyes opened to my surroundings. Truthfully, perspective is EVERYTHING! Without it we are merely scrambling creatures indulging in our own demise.

GET SOME PERSPECTIVE!

You see, when I analyzed myself from the inside out (for a change), I realized my mind was poisoning my body: My hatred for running never matured; therefore, my body kept rejecting the miles. When you allow negativity to infiltrate your mind, there is NO way to cross the finish line (at least not with a good attitude). Each step nags a little bit more than the one prior to and before you know it, you’re either injured (because you’re tensed) or quitting (because you hate it). This is NOT the best way to live; trust me, I KNOW!

I AM NOT SAYING THIS:

I am NOT telling you that opening your mind equates to ultimate pleasure; I doubt you will enjoy each and every activity you try, even if you approach them with the best attitude.

I AM SAYING THIS:

I AM telling you that with the right mindset, exercising can be soothing. Staying fit is all about perspective: Open your heart, listen to your body, and enjoy the movement.

Currently, I am training to run under a twenty minute 5k. Without PERSPECTIVE I NEVER would have fully understood my talent as a runner. Now with my new found ability, I’m living life and LOVING my runs!

xoxo,

Kristin

WHATCHA THINK?? LIKE IT?? HAVE A FAB THURSDAY!!! 

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  1. Chelsea Ross (@RunnerGirlChels)

    You have a beautiful spirit, my friend! I enjoyed reading your story and how you have transformed over the years. I especially loved this part: ‘Staying fit is all about perspective: Open your heart, listen to your body, and enjoy the movement.’ That could not be more true! I’m definitely holding onto that thought!! Enjoy the journey that you are on and best of luck on that 5K time and your upcoming half!!

    Reply

    1. Kristin

      Chelsea, you’re the best!! You really have the best attitude about life. I always love reading your comments because you make me feel so special!! Thanks for that and for inspiring me as well as so many other people!! You’re so loving and caring!! XOXO! Have a great weekend!

      Reply

  2. HealthyMasters

    You are an inspiration!!!! Exercising is sooo soothing to the mind as well as the body.. On my bad and good days, it energizes me to get up and go!!! Great post as always love!!! Xoxoxox 🙂 you are amazing

    Reply

    1. Kristin

      Eeeek!!! Thanks and no YOU are amaaaazing!! 😉 😉 You really are! You’re so supportive and loving and have such a fab perspective about life. I really look up to you and thanks for your kind words! Truly, thanks for your love!! XOXO!!

      Reply

  3. Lauren @ ihadabiglunch

    I feel like running is taken SO seriously, especially in high school. I think it’s one of those things that, if the person doesn’t discover the love for it on their own (the way I did in college while running alone and with no real push to be GREAT), you can go into life thinking that to run = to race, all the time. But running isn’t always a race 🙂

    Reply

    1. Kristin

      Wow, what a fabulous point Lauren!! Yep, it’s definitely not just a race! Running can really open you up and give you such a great point of view about life and raise self-esteem. It’s really just a wonderful activity to do! Perspective is truly everything so thanks for your awesome comment!! Have the best weekend!! XOXO!

      Reply

  4. Shawna

    hope the last leg of your race training goes well! i know you’ll kill it. setting goals and pushing ourselves is always a good challenge, and i agree that perspective is so clutch. you’re an amazing runner and inspiration — an under 20-min 5K?! get it, girl.

    Reply

    1. Kristin

      Hehe, Shawna!! Thanks for your encouragement and support! Your attitude is wonderful!! Just so great! I appreciate your awesome, kind comment and hope you have the best weekend! You’re amazing! XOXO!!

      Reply

  5. Single-Tracked Mind

    So funny! Attitude really is everything. If you decide you hate broccoli when you’re a kid, you will still hate it as an adult if you don’t keep an open mind! Exciting for your race to be just around the corner!

    Reply

    1. Kristin

      Wow, such a wonderful comparison!! It’s seriously true!! I wasn’t a big fan of broccoli as a kid, so it definitely took a few tries as an adult to open up to it! 🙂 Great point!! Thanks for your encouragement!! Have a spectacular weekend!! XOXO!

      Reply

  6. piratebobcat

    This is awesome. I’m glad you were finally able to ‘enjoy’ running. I know what you mean. Running used to be a form of punishment in the other sports I played. Thanks Kristin1

    Reply

    1. Kristin

      Hey!! Hope you’re having a great Thursday!! Yep, so true about the punishment thing!! Isn’t that funny? My perspective has definitely changed!! Have a great day! XOXO!

      Reply

  7. tricouple1968

    Love your running story! I actually grew up a swimmer and also specialized in breast stroke (beware breast – stroker knee!). I H-A-T-E-D running until I was ……….um…….probably 40. Now, although there are days I might not totally love it, I do for the most part enjoy it 🙂

    Good luck on the half – I can’t wait to hear how it goes!!!!

    Reply

    1. Kristin

      Awesome!! A swimmer!! Love it!! 😉 Swimming will always be the fairest of them all as far as I’m concerned!! I like running, but I love swimming!! So cool your stroke was breast!! Mine were fly and back! I compete in masters swim meets! They’re a lot of fun! Thanks so much for your comment!! You’re awesome and so encouraging! I love talking about swimming! 😉 😉 XOXO!

      Reply

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