Monday, July 8, 2013

Why Running is Awesome x 10!

Happy Monday!

To brighten your week and keep you motivated this Monday, I bring you something new! Two great blogs I've enjoyed following and connecting with recently, The Lady Okie Blog and Coffee and Macarons, are hosting a fun link-up:

Coffee & Macarons


Over the last year I've become semi-obsessed with running. Overall the response has been positive. I've heard family members and friends tell me I've inspired them to get active. Others, however, likely get a little sick of hearing me go on and on about the fun social runs like my running photo scavenger hunt, how I worked out in the rain, how I've been sore for days after my 10 mile runs, or how frustrated I am with not getting down to my 30 minute 5K.

As entertaining as these topics are to me, I sometimes get a few blank stares.

Before I got into running, I didn't get it either. It felt miserable. Minutes felt like days as I attempted to run just a quarter mile. I thought I'd never get to a point where I could breathe while running. I felt so out of shape compared to others. I'd see other people chatting and laughing while running.

What was up with these people having so much fun? How could this be possible?

Finally, as I ran my first mile and first 5K, and much later my first half marathon, I slowly started to get it. I was accomplishing things I never imagined I'd accomplish. I was building bonds with people who had been in my shoes (well, not "my" shoes, but we all wear running shoes) and could advise me. We'd laugh as we tried crazy new workouts. Running slowly became an integral part of my life.

As such, it's hard to narrow down to just one reason. So I came up with 10.

Sorry guys, if you only wanted one. Look on the bright side, you're now 10% of the way there! :)

  1. The "Did that really just happen?" feeling - Often times, we feel accomplished in our work, school, or other responsibilities, but we rarely feel acccomplished in our personal lives. This was me before running. From the first mile to my first half-marathon, I had many moments where I thought, Who am I? This isn't me! The best part is that it never ends. As soon as you accomplish one thing, you're onto the next one!
  2. My new lifestyle - I use this carefully as I believe "lifestyle" is often overused: "It's not a diet, it's a lifestyle!", "[Insert sport here] isn't a game, it's a lifestyle!" and so on. I feel like it has almost become cliche. Let me describe what I mean by calling running a lifestyle. Once I got my husband, Brandon, into running, it became as integral to our lives as working or sleeping. Our RunKNOX practices are "what we do" on certain nights. We see and interact with our running friends 2-3 times a week. Instead of sleeping in, our standard Saturday activity is to get up early, run, and enjoy breakfast together. It makes our lives fun and interesting!
  3. Great friends - Don't get me wrong, I have a great network of friends, family, and colleagues outside of running that I care about dearly. However, I was so surprised when I met other runners who welcomed me, didn't judge me at my beginning state, and embraced me into the local running community. As they've all been there, they're a great source of information and advice. Not to mention they make running fun. We chat, laugh and joke, complain about our workouts, bond as we go through the challenges together, and cheer for each other's accomplishments. I never would have stayed with it so long if I hadn't had such great new friends!
  4. There's a place for me (and everyone)! - When I first started running, I was afraid people would judge me for not being able to run far or fast. Luckily, that didn't happen (see #3). Additionally, when I went to my first 5K race, I was pleasantly surprised to see a wide range of participants -from  people walking to elite runners, children to senior citizens, all fitness levels, people of all shapes and sizes. Running is a place where you can jump in and grow from wherever you are.
  5. An escape from stress and worry - Trust me, you don't want to enter the deep, dark corners of my mind, but the sad truth is that I'm often a pessimist. I'm trying to overcome it. I can make one mistake or one thing can go wrong, and suddenly I imagine I'm destined to be destitute, alone, and a failure. Cue the violin music. Luckily, none of those have ever come to fruition. I carry this worry and stress with me, and running helps me get past it. I remember a few months ago, I'd had a particularly stressful day and my mind went there. Despite my gloomy outlook, I went to run with my group anyway. As soon as I started interacting with my running friends and working out, I forgot all about the (non) issue! 
  6. More confidence and less hang-ups and insecurities - Okay, I'll admit I'm not there totally yet, but running has helped. When I first began running, I felt insecure about my abilities and appearance. I'd put on makeup before running and worry about how my hair looked. Now I know it's not about the shallow things. Fellow runners respect me for the hard work I put in, and what I accomplish. They don't care about the little stuff, which helps me care less. This confidence has also carried over into other areas of my life, as I now know I'm capable of accomplishing more than I think.
  7. The way I look - Well, there is one shallow thing I will touch on. Since I've started running, I've seen major changes in my appearance. Over the last year and a half, I've lost about 18 lbs (eating mostly healthy - admittedly I'm still figuring that part out). More importantly, however, for the first time in my life, I can see hints of muscles, especially in my legs! I still have a long way to go, but it's nice to get closer to looking the part of a runner!
  8. The way I feel - Once I got past an initial lethargic stage when I first started running, I started noticing that I felt better in my day to day life. I have more energy, breathe better, sleep better, am less tired from daily chores like laundry or cleaning, and can handle taxing chores with ease. I can't imagine going back!
  9. Seeing beautiful places - It's amazing I lived in Knoxville for 7 years before I really ever "saw" it. Once I started running, I saw views of the river I'd ignored when driving, greenways through wooded areas I never knew existed, side streets and neighborhoods I'd never traveled. It was like Knoxville was new all over again! 
  10. The ability to help others in their journey - This is the best part! In RunKNOX and even my social circles, I get to meet people who are considering running, or new to running. Because I have been there, I have a point of reference to relate to them and encourage them to keep going! I've gotten to see people go from not being able to run a mile to running 5 miles or more!
That's it! Those are my 10! Be sure to stop by The Lady Okie Blog and Coffee and Macarons to see why they and others think running is awesome!

Why do you think running is awesome?


Want more? Follow the CSRS Blog on  FacebookTwitterPinterestGoogle+, or CoffeeScarvesandRunningShoes on Instragram for the latest updates, articles, and more!


  1. First, I love your blog name. We could be soulmates considering I own 12+ scarves as accessories. Second, your reasons are fab! My husband and I became runners together and it's so important to have immediate support. There's nothing shallow with loving the way you look from being a runner (or any type of athlete). We are strong! We gotta love it!

    So happy you found Amanda and I!


    1. Hi soulmate (or "sole-mate", haha)! So glad I found the link-up and your blog! Yes, it appears we have a lot in common! Yes, nothing better than wearing a dress and heels and realizing your legs look great from all of the running! :)

      Thanks for hosting the link-up and thanks for stopping by!

  2. These are excellent reasons. Every single one I completely agree with. My favorite is #4. That's probably the main reason I love running--runners are so nice and encouraging! I run faster than some people and slower than some people, and I still always feel so accomplished and encouraged. This is so fun reading everyone's reasons! I wish we could all get together and run now :) Thanks for linking up!

    1. Thanks Amanda, and thanks for hosting the link-up! I was shocked when I found that runners were so nice and supportive. I expected them to judge me, and I don't think that has been the case at all! I can't wait to see the list of all of the reasons!

  3. Wonderful reasons! You re so spot on! I love running because it's so inclusive and yet so personal. No matter your time or your style, there's a place in the community and I love that.

    1. Thank you! Yes, there is a place for everyone from the slow (like me) to the very fast, and we can all enjoy! :)

  4. Great reasons! I resonate with a lot of them, especially the "Did I Really Just Do That?" reason - that's my favorite. Wowing myself and impressing myself is such an awesome feeling!!

    1. Thanks Alicia! Yes, I remember when I ran my first mile, first 5K, and first half. Each time I was in shock and couldn't believe it had just happened!

  5. Just found your blog on the link up!! I love your reasons for running :) Also, I love your blog name...3 things I love :)


  6. Love your blog, and especially your 10 reasons! What a cute idea. #4 is my favorite!

  7. Those are all reasons that I agree with, plus running causes me to eat in a more healthy way because I need to eat well in order to feel good when I run.