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Today is National Running Day! Start the parade, tie up your running shoes and stay home from work! Wouldn’t it be great if it was also a national holiday?

Today is a day to celebrate running and remember the best memories from running. I have seen a few bloggers posting about how they got into running and I thought it was a great idea.

The Early Days

I started running while I was going into my third year of University. My room mate and I usually ate pretty healthy but I was feeling lazy from inactivity. I used to play soccer in the summer but it had stopped that year for my age group. I’m not sure why we settled on running but it was probably because all you need is a pair of shoes and a running outfit. Easily afforded on a student budget.

That year we ran maybe 1 or 2 days a week (if that) and I saw an advertisement for the Terry Fox run. It was a 10k race and we decided we would attempt it even though we hadn’t ran that far before. We also thought running 8km two days before was a good way to see if we could do it. HILARIOUS. Anyways, we ended up finishing in about 1:20 (we took a washroom break as well as an orange break). The rest of the day was spent trying to stay awake while recovering and watching movies. I’ve never felt worse after a race as I did that day.

Getting More Serious

The following year, I finished school in April and found myself with no job to keep me busy with. This was great for the first week of summer vacation but then it just got progressively worse and frustrating. For those of you wondering, there is nothing worse than having nothing to do all day except be alone with your thoughts. I felt like a loser. So I started to run more. I had seen that someone on my facebook had done Ottawa Race Weekend (I don’t remember what race or who it was) but it peaked my interest in running more.

I started doing my research on which runs I could sign up for a settled on the Army Run which is always near the end of September. I signed up in May and I figured it would leave me enough time to do some training. Looking back on my training runs, it’s hilarious how slow I ran them all. There was a lot of run/walking happening. September rolled around and I managed to finish in 2:25 flat. Not terrible for a first time.

Before the Army run, 2012

Before the Army run, 2012

Side Note: I actually injured myself in this race from pushing too hard. My body wasn’t ready to move that much or that quickly. I had trouble walking up and down stairs for about a month afterwards. My friend Jenny reminded me of this the other day and laughed at me… Thanks for the memory Jenny!

Three Races in One Year

Feeling more ambitious the next year, I signed up for a spring half marathon and a fall half marathon. Unfortunately, due to school I was pretty undertrained for the spring one and ended up running it pretty slow to make sure I wouldn’t hurt myself. I spent the summer training more than I ever had and beat my PR at the Army run in September. I had felt off during that race and still beat it. I signed up for a half in October of that year once I realized I would be fully recovered and ready to go. I beat my PR again (feeling much stronger at that race).

Crazy Race Year

Last year, I did more races than I can remember. You can read about them here https://engineerrunnergirl.wordpress.com/2015/01/05/2014-race-summary/

I feel like over the last year, I have become a more ambitious and successful runner. Although there have been some nasty races that didn’t go as planned, I have become more consistent in training and more confident in my running. It acts as a therapy session, a workout, and so much more. I love running! I wish everyone would try it out so they can feel the same way!

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Happy National Running Day everyone!!

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