I started running in August of last year because on a whim, I decided to run a 5K for which I had done almost NO training.  The run itself wasn’t anything to write home about, but what it inspired me to do was keep running.  Run a half marathon, run a full marathon, run run run until I had met my goals.

When I started running, I could make it just one quarter mile around our neighborhood before breathlessness and exhaustion would get the best of me.  I would stop, hunched over, gasping, thinking, “I am only in my 2o’s.  I should be able to do this.  Why am I so out of shape?  Why isn’t this easier?”

Luckily, I happen to be very stubborn.  I didn’t quit and I didn’t just decide, “eh, running is not my thing”.  I kept pushing and pushing and soon, I was running a mile and then a mile and a half and then three miles.  I was running without stopping and it felt good.

I had the encouragement of a running buddy…

Or two ;).

And the miles started adding up…

Until I successfully trained and ran my first half marathon on April 11,2010.

That half marathon means a lot of different things to me — it means I am living life instead of just surviving it.  It means I am honoring all my grandparents, who in their individual ways, led active and full lives.  It means I have put a stop to the voice in the back of my head that told me for far too many years, “you can’t, you won’t, you’re not good enough”.

It means I am a runner.

I have done an incredible amount of thinking about what makes you a runner.  Is it how fast you’re pacing? Is it that you wear shorty shorts?  Is it that you look like a gazelle as you glide along a bike path or roadside?

No.  None of those.  Thankfully.

I’ve decided being a runner is about being committed to a goal and realizing that commitment.  I committed myself to running this half marathon, less than a year after I started running at all, and I’m going to see it through.  Take that, little negative voice in the back of my mind.

I started blogging as a form of accountability in my training and because the running was changing my life and my lifestyle and I appreciated that.  I started blogging because I am a newbie and I thought my perspective might at least give someone else a smile.  When I named the blog “Not Unless I’m Being Chased” it because that was how I would answer when someone would ask me, “oh, do you run?” Not unless I’m being chased.

Today, that name takes on a whole new meaning.

I still maintain I don’t run unless I’m being chased, but this time, I’m not joking about it.   I know exactly who is chasing me.  Coming up fast behind me is the woman I used to be – out of shape, embarrassed, uncommitted and nurturing a minorly unhealthy relationship with food.  She’s moving at a good clip, but it’s okay.  As long as she’s chasing me, I’m reminded the path of regressing to couch potato status isn’t that far off, so I’ll be running.  I will run, with her chasing me, for the rest of my now very active life.


Not Unless I’m Being Chased.


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  1. I just found you through Healthy Tipping Point – and love this explaination of why you run. Congrats on running your first half. I am working on running my first half in July and my first marathon in October. Good luck to you!! 🙂

    • Hi there and welcome! I’m glad you started reading :). I love hearing from new readers. Good luck training for your half — it is the most incredible feeling when you hit that finish line and think, “I did it. I just REALLY did it.” Keep up the great work!

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