When did you start running and why?
I started running officially the summer after my sophomore year of college when I was 19, about to turn 20 (2004).
I have always been very active and thrived on playing sports in high school, but adjusting to college life when I had no organized sports to keep me moving really shook up my lifestyle. I would rollerblade and go to the gym with my roommate, but it just wasn’t the same.
I somehow missed out on the freshman 15, but was hit by the sophomore 25. I saw a picture of myself at a party with a friend and could not believe what I saw! How could this be me? I’m an athlete! Alas, I was an athlete with no athletic activity.
That May, I moved into my first apartment as a sub-leaser, and as luck may have it, my new roommate was a dietetics major who was an avid runner. She ran 6 miles every day without fail and was running a marathon at the end of that summer.
For me, it was easy to pick up an active lifestyle while living with someone like that. I went out and moved every day for at least a half hour. Rollerblading, riding my bike, walking around campus, it just became a part of my daily life, and the weight started to roll off.
I loved running when I was in elementary school. I was one of the best runners in my class, but somewhere in middle school I started to HATE running, and that mindset had stuck with me. But in my mind, the fittest people were always runners. It represented discipline and determination, so one day, I went for a run. I only made it about 3 blocks (this was right before I realized I had severe asthma). But the next day, I made myself go 4 blocks. Soon, I was running for 5 minutes, then 7, then 10, and before I knew it, I was doing 2 miles without thinking about it.
I still remember the day I ran 4 miles for the first time, and the time I ran for an hour straight for the first time, my first double digit mileage run. I was suddenly a runner. A day didn’t feel successful unless I ran.
I realized that I was completely in love and addicted.