Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Running Bug

I discovered running much like many people discover things they never meant to do.

Peer pressure.

Five years ago, my friend Megan dared me, literally triple dog dared me, to run the Dana Point Turkey Trot 10k with her. I laughed out loud. Then, I thought about it. Every time I went to her house, I felt myself oddly drawn to a photo of her at the finish line of a marathon looking exhausted but smiling from ear to ear. Well, I thought, if Megan can run 26 miles, surely I can jog 6. I had grown up playing soccer and swore that I would never run without a ball. At least with a ball there was a point, a goal, an objective. Running aimlessly seemed like sheer torture.

Nevertheless, I decided to start a simple training program. One afternoon I was running down a big hill in the glorious California sunshine, and a huge light went on in my head. "I like this. Wait, I love this. Wait, am I insane?" Right then and there, I caught the running bug. I ran my very first race on Thanksgiving Day and grinned as I crossed the finish line. I've run that race ( and a few more) every year since. I save all my racing bibs and hang them in my bedroom.

Which brings me to why I'm telling this story in the first place. Over the last two weeks, I've witnessed my sister-in-law, and my mother, who is almost 60, catch the same bug. I took them both shopping for running gear and good running shoes at the BROOKS outlet here in the Seattle area. I delighted in helping them pick out shoes. I delighted in hitting the trails with them. I delighted in knowing how running will change them.

Running leaves you feeling clean and light. Troubles get pounded into the pavement, peace arrives after mastering a big hill, and a unique camaraderie is formed with other runners.

For some amazing running anecdotes, visit Kristin Armstong's blog.....


  1. Aaahhhh, yes since you have been bitten by said bug, its just a matter of time before you do a marathon because that's just the "natural progression" of the "bug". Good luck. I framed my marathon racing bibs, yes plural (4) because I had someone tell me that I couldn't do just 1 and I caught that same bug and well, it took awhile to shake it!! Its fun to see them on the wall as a reminder of what I "couldn't do". Happy running....

  2. still trying to catch that bug...

  3. I'm still trying to catch it too. I actually had it at one point, but then moved overseas where I am the SPECTACLE everywhere I go and the bug amazingly left!

  4. Typically, I don't appreciate when people pass their bugs on to me. But this one I don't mind so much!

  5. Mmm... I must have some sort of strange immunity to this specific strain of bug. I am very proud of you though!!

  6. Lisa, If I could just stop getting the same stress fracture over and over, I'll do that marathon! I tried...completed 3/4 of the training and then was sidelined....I have done a few halfs though.....

  7. OUCH....stress fracture. Now that I have no advice for - soooo sorry. I did my 4 marathons in 2 years and then stopped. For some crazy reason I avoided a sress fracture, I was in my early 30's and let's say a lot of beer was involved - blah ha - maybe that's what saved me. Not sure. I'm a HUGE walker now. I have walked several 1/2 marathons and did the Chicago marathon in 2006. Doing the Nike Women's Maraton in San Fran in Oct. and so excited. My running days are over by choice and am happy with my "walking bug" I think as long as you keep moving its all good. Good luck keeping the stress fractures away...


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