The Difference Between Running and Being a Runner

First, have you voted for me to be on the cover of Runner's world? http://coversearch.runnersworld.com/entry/217/

If so, it's day 2 so you can vote again ;) If not, it would mean the world to me! THANK YOU THANK YOU! 

Second, have you ever sat and thought? What makes me a runner? When does that switch happen? At the end of my marathon, I thought to myself "Am I marathoner?" and then I quickly told myself no.

That was silly of course because I had in fact completed a marathon, but it just didn't feel right yet placing that title for myself. This is also for funsies because obviously none of this REALLY matters, but just thoughts that I have. I really don't consider myself a triathlete either even though I've done 3 tris at this point. The bike and I are still going through peaks and valleys in our relationship and I guess that doesn't make the distinction for me to be a triathlete or not, but it feels that way. I did however ride that thing for 2 hours yesterday. WHOOP WHOOP! I'm severely behind in my bike training for my ironman, but I assume I still have plenty of time. I wanted to wait until the ultra was done, and then I will dive head first into Ironman training. 

SPEAKING OF ULTRA, ARE YOU AN ULTRA RUNNER IF YOU RUN ONE ULTRA? HA! 7 days out guys! It's taper week, and by taper week, I mean my coach still has me running 15 miles today. haha! I was able to find a friend of a friend who is letting us stay at their place 9 minutes from the start line. WHAT? So blessed to have friends all over to let me crash on their floor/couch/basements/etc.

The start time is 730am in efforts to beat the heat, and it's 31 miles of flat trails and apparently some loose sand which should be interesting (and fun!). 

BACK ON TOPIC!!!

When I used to go outside for a little jog, come back in and not go again for 2 weeks, was I a runner? I'm going to go with no. I was not in fact a runner. When did that switch happen when people went from thinking I was a bodybuilder (ha) to a marathon runner? 

I think it has to do with heart. 

Are you running because you feel like you have to? Are you running even though you hate it? Are you ever looking to run races? (This is not a for sure qualification to the "You're a runner" status because you can be a Christian without going to church #ProudOfThatMetaphor) Are you ever structuring a program for yourself to get better at your sport? 

Running is just the act of moving your feet. Being a runner means that it is your sport, your love, your passion! If you are going into the run thinking about how many calories that you will burn or thinking about when it will be over so that you never have to do it again, then I'm going to say that you are....A FUTURE RUNNER! ;) hahah! 

It's a process. For me, I was like an almost runner and then I gave it up for years. I hadn't truly found myself in it yet. I was way too focused on that body image. BOOO! It wasn't until I really sank into what running could do for my overall health, how I could excel in it as a sport that I began to truly get into that nirvana. I started to fall in love. Those runs were no longer about what I could get out of them, but just how much I could sink into the moment and enjoy every second. 

Being a runner to me means that I'm the most at peace when all I can hear is my feet hitting the pavement. Being a runner to me means that I get to travel all over the world in motion seeing sites I would never normally see. In the runner's world entry, they made us describe our breakthrough moment in 200 words or less when we would never look back on running. 

I HAD TO PICK ONE!?!?! 

I was like torn on which of my moments I wanted to pick. Some of those that came to mind were: 

  • My very first 16 mile run 
  • My first marathon finish
  • My 3rd place finish at my 3rd marathon (which is the one I ended up picking) 
  • The first time my mom walked a 5K (because Id love for her to one day run and that means a lot to me) 
  • All the moments in between at sunsets and sunrises when I see that there is no possible way that my God isn't so very present because I can't look at those paintings in the sky and nature while in motion and not believe 

I think that becoming a runner means that it means more. Becoming a runner means that you are able to see that the first mile is just the warm up. You never feel the nirvana until at least MILE FOUR. Becoming a runner means that you actually love running and you find more meaning in it than just what you can get out of it. Becoming a runner means friendship, nature, travel, perseverance, dedication when you don't want to and so many other things. I definitely recommend going from just running to becoming a runner. Make a program and stick to it. See how you feel after. Don't just go on one run and make that decision. Don't just go on 5 singular runs and decide you hate it. Consistent running-let your body get good at it and then come back and tell me how you feel! :) 

You can just call Katie (wants everyone to be a runner) Ringley! 

 

 

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