Our Editor Has Been a Runner for 15 Years — Here’s Why She Won’t Stop

New Balance

I can remember the exact day I decided to start running. I remember what I wore (definitely not running appropriate) and the shoes I laced up (also not at all running appropriate) and why I started. I was looking for a way to find stability. I was in year 12 at high school completing my HSC and felt overwhelmed with study and what life would look like when I stepped outside those school gates. My boyfriend at the time was from a family of runners, and I loved how much they loved it. They would get competitive, participate in fun runs and share training tips. I caught the bug and I’ve never looked back.

It’s been 15 years since I started lacing up my shoes and heading out the door, with a key in my pocket and nothing else but my thoughts. I run because I find it meditative. I love the opportunity to step outside with no distraction and no phone, and to achieve a personal goal.

I’m often asked how I find the motivation to get up and go, but the truth is I don’t need to ‘find the motivation’. It’s become a habit — much like brushing my teeth in the morning or drinking water before bed. It’s become a non-negotiable part of my day, and I know that if I don’t get out there, the rest of my day feels ‘off’.

I know running doesn’t come naturally for everyone. I’ve had to work at it consistently, and I still do. I had a baby 18 months ago and had to rebuild my endurance postpartum, and whenever I felt like I just couldn’t get back out there again, I thought back to all the reasons why I have kept it up over the last 15 years, and why it’s such an important part of who I am.

I wanted to share all the reasons behind why I run so I can bookmark it and revisit it if I’m ever feeling like I can’t get out of bed one day.

Keep reading for all the reasons why I’ll never stop running, and how it helps me achieve my goals.

It’s a challenge

I love setting an achievable personal goal, something that is in my control and I can easily work towards. When I first started running, I would set small goals like ‘just make it to the next light post’, and then gradually I’d built out the distance that I was able to run. From there, I started to set myself goals based on time, like ‘I want to run 10kms in under an hour’ by the end of the year. Setting a challenge helps keep me motivated to continue running and I love being able to tick something off the list to say I’ve achieved it.

It’s my ‘thing’

When the pandemic hit and we were all forced inside and everyone picked up a hobby, it made me realise that I don’t have any — until my husband pointed out that running is my hobby. I love running in new areas and discovering different pockets of Sydney all on foot. And alongside that, I love discovering new running gear that’ll help me achieve a PB. I recently started trialling the New Balance Fresh Foam X 880v12 ($220) and it’s the perfect all-rounder running shoe. With a plush, cushiony sole, my foot feels supported to cover long distances. And not only that, I love the bright colours. I feel safer running in the evening knowing I’ll be spotted a mile away.

It’s great for my mental health

Like most, I can get caught in an endless doom scroll flicking between apps and feeling overwhelmed with life. I find that if I get outside in the fresh air for 30 minutes, everything feels a lot lighter and more manageable. I’m able to think through my thoughts with no distraction and come back home feeling settled and capable to manage whatever’s on my plate.

Running with music or listening to a meditative podcast is also a great way to let your mind switch off from the rest of the world.

It helps me achieve my goals at work

I do a lot of my best thinking, strategising and brainstorming when I’m running. I like to run first thing in the morning and think about what I want to achieve for the day. By the time I’m at my desk, I’m alert and ready to tackle the day. 

Running has also made me addicted to the feeling of setting a goal and achieving it. A bit like writing something like ‘have a shower’ on your to-do list to inspire productivity. Ticking off a running goal helps motivate me to tick off non-running related goals, too because I love that feeling of being able to say ‘I did it!’. 

I have more energy

If I skip a few days I notice an immediate impact on my energy and motivation. I feel sluggish and like I’m wading through brain fog. We all know that more exercise = more endorphins. When my energy levels are up, it means I can function at work, then run around and play with a busy toddler at the end of the day.

If you’re looking for a pair of shoes that’ll help you bound out of bed each day and get moving, try the New Balance Fresh Foam X 880v12 ($220), and let me know what you think!

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