This week I realized that one of my biggest motivators for running has been my location. Now I know, I know, beach-city-victoria-lovers are going to be rolling eyes-face-palm-hello-obviously-ing at me but seriously, it hadn’t crossed my mind. It wasn’t until I was telling someone that I like to run to the beach watch the sunset/rise/birds/seals/etc. and run home that I realized that the beach is probably one of my biggest motivators. It is always, always worth it. It is the ‘instant’ gratification that sometimes is harder to find (and very much needed) for running as a beginner. Honestly, my run isn’t a long run, but even within the last few weeks of consistency, I have noticed a pretty significant change in my lungs, legs, back and distance. While I still do not push myself over the edge (as I have learned the hard way that that is a one-way ticket to i-hate-running-I’m-never-moving-again), I find the realization that I am upright, rather than flat on my back, breathing normally, rather feeling as though I may lose a lung, and willing (and WANTING) to do a kettle-bell work out upon my arrival home, all means that this is going somewhere over the rai…ight direction.
On Wednesday night I hadn’t been on a run since Saturday, nor had I done any other form of exercise (which goes against my entire active-living-and-keeping-it-up goal). Although it isn’t the largest gap between Saturday and Wednesday, (trust me, I’ve gone longer) I started to feel a bit more irritable, a soft shade of blue, and little things were overwhelming for me. If any of you have tried to start and stick to an active living routine, you will know that the arrival of this feeling makes it even harder to get back into your running shoes. The only thing that got me out was the thought of the beach with THIS sunset. Seriously, it was incredible. And thank goodness for that sunset because otherwise, it would have been an “ice cream and whine” Wednesday. When I started running, slowly but surely the weight that those feelings brought to my days weren’t as heavy and at the end (middle, actually) of my run the entire sky turned red and pink on fire. And this left me with the very real feeling of “man, I love running.” Now, I’ve only been running consistently for about a month, and although I haven’t noticed a ton of external physical changes the internal changes, the changes I have been feeling (aka the “I love running” feelings) are so. much. more. significant.
I know I am not the first one to say it because I have heard it over and over again. Exercise is essential to one’s health, both mental and physical, but it hasn’t been until I have experienced it myself that it clicked. SO, if you’re wondering if it works… it does, but the best way to find out is to try it for yourself.
Ps. A view to run to helps too… lucky to have this sunset (or something like it) as my running backdrop on a daily!