I Only Run If I Am Being Chased

You run how far???

I only run when I am being chased by someone!!

Har!! Har!! Har!!

Man … that joke NEVER gets old. It is right up there with “You bike 56 miles? I don’t even like to DRIVE that far!!”
Yeah … they got jokes …. 
The thing is, I used to be the one saying those stupid lines when I ever ran into someone who ran marathons, or did Ironman races. I never understood how someone could LIKE pushing their bodies to such limits, and for such lengths of time. I had read about the “runner’s high”, the feeling of calmness when on a bike, or during a swim. Could never grasp that concept.
I cannot say that I am in love with running yet, but I now “get it”. I see it in my teammates. I am jealous of it, because I WANT to get to that point where I feel like I NEED to run. I am there for the most part on my bike portion. I love being on my bike. Even on the hard workouts, or the days when I have worked eight or nine hours and don’t feel like drive the 24 miles to North Tampa, after I get on the bike and do a loop or two I feel … at home. My legs are burning …. sweat dropping off me like a faucet is under my hat … my skin looking like I just stepped out of the shower …. but I have more energy than I have had all day. It is a great feeling. Even with the swim I have entered “zones” where I lost count of the laps and I am just swimming … not even the least little bit concerned about my pace or my distance. 
But the run? 
Not so much … 
It is mostly due to my weight still. Even though I am MUCH lighter than when I started, I am still pounding away at 245 pounds, on 50 year old knees that are arthritic. It is not fun. But there are days where it is easier than others, so I see the potential. 
But is there something to that saying “I only run when I am being chased!”?
I AM being chased … and it IS why I run!!
I am being chased by the 300 pound man that I was two years ago …. 
I am being chased by the 49 year old JC who doesn’t feel like he’s on the cusp of 50 … 
I am being chased by the couch potato watching the Biggest Loser with a soda in one hand and a bag of chips balanced on his belly … 
I am being chased by the life long student who is stuck in a thankless job due to his own stupidity …
I am being chased by the ghosts of shipmates lost … 
I am being chased by unhappy childhood memories …
I am being chased by too many past failures and mistakes … 
I am being chased by cancer … and the fear of cancer in my future … 
We all run for our own reasons, but it comes down to either we are running from something, or running to something. You may have to search hard to find that reason, but it is there. I am proud to be around a large group of people who run to raise money for cancer research, Team in Training. It is hard in this time to raise money at all, even friends and family do not donate anymore, but this group of people are there every year, sometimes for multiple events, raising money to help those with this awful disease. Jenny, Megan, Genna Beth, Teresa, Lyle, Christa, and so many more … they run because they have had cancer themselves, as I have, or they run to help someone that they know or to remember and honor someone they lost. And it is not easy. I have heard the “elite” triathletes ridicule the TNT team, because they are mostly new to the sport and still learning, without any regard to WHY they are out there. Yes sometimes we do stupid things. We have not moved out of the way when we hear “on your left”. We have run side by side across the road. We fall because we forgot to unclip when stopping, and we panic in the water when the waves are too high.
So what?
We do this because we are being chased … 
What’s chasing YOU?
And don’t say Zombies! 🙂

2 thoughts on “I Only Run If I Am Being Chased

  • September 18, 2012 at 1:20 pm

    Well crap. No zombies? Hm. I'll go with I'm being chased by fear of failure. It's always in the back of my mind. Keep running. You'll get faster and stronger the more miles you add on. I think you are doing great!

  • September 18, 2012 at 2:57 am

    Love this one! Thanks for sharing. A lot of those same things are on my list, too, although I've never thought of these things to be chasing me, but now that you put it out there, it makes total sense! We're not all that different 🙂

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