with 8 Comments

I just took 3 weeks off from training. Not running, hell no, jail is not an option. Just training like a beast 6 days a week. I had just finished 2 back to back half marathon training cycles and the thought of doing another set of intervals was on par with getting up for the 17th time at night to put a pacifier back into a baby’s mouth that will spit it back out the second you fall asleep.

Running is a hard sport.

It is revealing. It strips you to your bare soul and at the end you just hope something doesn’t break. You give a lot of yourself when you run.  Its heart and soul stuff. We all have goals. We are all chasing some milestone, pace, PB or a race. We invest hours into it and we go from “Ermagerd, I love running so much” to “Lord have mercy, please just strike me down”. Everything sorta just comes to a grinding halt somewhere along the way and training becomes hard. Tedious at best. You look at the stats and you are running slower than you did when you were injured last summer and your foot was fractured. You are pushing as hard as you can, and getting nowhere.

capture1Sound familiar? I know right, you thought it was just you. Nah, its all of us. Even that lighting fast, perfect form, running machine that runs past your house in the mornings have days where he would rather fake the man flu AGAIN than go for a run.

So why do I go for a run then if I don’t feel like it?  Because giving up is not an option. My struggle isn’t individual. I am not alone. I have countless friends across the world that will lace up running shoes tomorrow wishing they could rather sleep in.

I run solo 99% of the time. I have literally only ever ran with my sister and once with my running bestie Ian Morgan. I race with strangers. But I never feel alone on my runs. I have been blessed by getting to know so many people through instagram that share this crazy passion with me. They understand my pain, the struggle, the disappointment, the victories and they are just happy to ride the crazy train with me and share those adventures.

That is what carries me through the 9th km, when I ALWAYS hit the wall. What is up with km 9???  I think of their encouraging words when I hit the hateful 8 mile marker. I think of all my friends twinning it out in our matching socks and teamdontdie, runalways and keep on running t-shirts.

I haven’t met any of them in person, but I have shared some of my most incredible and proudest moments with them. They have seen me near death and hypothermic in a spa bath and watch me cross a finish line looking like I just won Gold at the Olympics. I have never been loved and embraced more for my crazy by a group of people than the running community.

We don’t care what shoes you wear, if you have branded clothes or not, if you run a 2 minute mile or a 22 minute mile. We don’t care if you are built like a majestic mythical running god and have all 10 toe nails.  We will cheer you on regardless of where you are in the pack. Your victories are our victories, and your failures are our opportunity to help you to a comeback.

That my friends, is what gets me running when I don’t feel like it and everything hurts and I wish I was dying.

You.

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@catherine.is.running

8 Responses

  1. Ricky
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    Great post. A couple of seasons ago I gave up football, through injury, which is how I became unfit. When I started running I thought it would be a lonely sport, 9 months into my running addiction, the opposite is true. I have been blessed by most of what you talk about in the running community, which only deepens my application of what running can do to life.

  2. Henrik Berg
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    Well written! Funny and inspiring. We help each other reach our goals! Keep up the good work!

  3. @mydifferentbuthappylife
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    Love this. Love the running community.I absolutely feel cheered in through every run

  4. Spottedturkey
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    This post speaks to my soul. You literally stole my thoughts. And this. This is why we soul sistas even though we are oceans apart. I am thankful everyday for the support and motivation I get on IG EACH AND EVERY DAY. You are such an integral part of that, Catherine. One my first friends on IG and without question a true bestie. Love u always. I’m very proud for you…for this post, for your dedication to the sport and for the love you share across the world with your humor and relentless spirit. LOVE YOU

  5. ian morgan
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    Seriously, one of the best human beings i have ever run with. Catherine, you have an amazing insight into people.
    You really are such a great friend and a kick ass runner. I remember your first speed session when you were pushing hard and hurting. However, with a few well chosen swear words and sheer determination you pushed on through and nailed it. You connect with others in a real, No BS kinda way. It’s refreshing to read your posts in this manufactured, sanitized running world.
    Keep on being you my best bestie. . .

  6. CrazyHattori
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    Wow. Nice post. You and your words inspire many people, I’m sure. You are an example of dedication for us. Sometimes we have crisis periods, we don’t want to train, run…. But people like you helps to be strong and better persons. Giving up is not an option. That’s the true.

  7. Maria
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    Aww Catherine this is perfect and I love it. You describe the running community perfectly, we are like a little family and we all look out for and love each other. Love you to the moon and back you beautiful inspiration

  8. Juli_Julie
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    Amen to this, Catherine. 😉 So well written. I am so thankful I stumbled over your and Ians Insta Accounts. And as Ian said… It is very refreshing to see (both of your) posts- because they are real and not manufactured. I find – here in Switzerland – running is “very serious business”. If you don`t `look like a runner`… You are not a runner, know what I mean? I personnally and honestly never found it to be a very welcoming group of people. 😀 But I`m glad that this is different in many other places, for example in Instaland. 🙂 Thanks for pouring your heart and soul out, no BS, just real and honest. I love it.