Why Run?

I started running after I learned to walk, well basically everyone of us started that way. From then on we never stopped running. We even run to or away from problems.

Running events i.e. marathons, triathlons and trail runs had been trending recently in the Philippines. And we see lots of people – friends and co-workers alike getting addicted to it.

If I can, I always shrink away from anything that is popular or trending because like some movies they tend to be over rated which is the same for books. To paraphrase Murakami If you read what everyone is reading, you think what everyone is thinking. That is boring.

I started Mountain Climbing four years ago because it wasn’t trending like it is doing now. For running, I don’t really have a choice. I started my running career as early as elementary where I got a huge laceration on the knee. I was (forcedly) entered as a sprinter in college then mainstayed as outfielder for the softball team.

I run also when dogs starts chasing. I did lots of running I guess and somehow it became a habit. One thing though, I never joined a running event till now. I’ll do that when the trend mellows into almost nothing. For now, I’ll keep running on my own pace on some unknown track.

The reason we run? Maybe we just want to see a sexy girl/man in jogging suit on the track. But whatever reasons we have, let’s try to delve into some of those:

1. Keeping fit. Lose weight – Maybe. Excercise, balanced diet and complete sleep equates to a fit body which same goes to losing weight. Brainwashed by abs on ads we equate keeping fit with running.

Running improves stamina among other benefits one gets from this form of exercise. For a skinny me, I gained weight when I ran miles preparing for my Mt. Apo climb last year. Well, running do contributes in keeping fit.

2. Meet new friends – running events had become popular nowadays, it is good to meet friends (w/ insatiable energy), widen network and probably meet a soulmate. As somone who had been into sports, friends whom I met because of it were friends who were for keeps. They also lead a strict life, no self-destruction.

3. Relaxation and stress reliever – This one is mine. I don’t know if some people share the same reason but after each run my mind feels more energized, more alert. As if in every steps, all worries and burdens are being left behind. You just feel the wind on your face and focused on the track. Your cognitive mind almost comes to a stop. Running clears the mind, that I can guarantee.

4. An Event on the Calendar – Activities are something to look forward to. I have a mentor who once said “It excites me. Yesterday, I was thinking of what to do today. Now, I have something to do”. For some, idle is not in their vocabulary. The man in motion, some people live on the move.

5. Strengthen relationships – May that be friendship or romantic love. Robert Greene will always be right, shared activities deepen relationships. It creates strong emotional bonds. Running alongside your sweetheart? Sounds fun and almost romantic.

6. Goal and accomplishment – We embark on activities because we have goals – may that be finishing the 40k run or winning a gold. With this comes the ‘feeling accomplished’ that appears on facebook walls (and then count the likes that microblog got).

I often see friends posting medals or shirts with ‘finisher’ on it on social media. I even saw someones wall full of stickers with numbers in them. For some, it is an accomplishment and a boost ob self-esteem.

For those other reasons, they blur into perks.#

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