As I looked back on 2012 and thought about all the great experiences I had, I realized that one of the best things I came away with was a new-found love of running. I had started running purely for practical reasons originally. I was being considered for a stunt doubling role for a local film, but they asked if I could lean up lose a few pounds in order to better match the skinny actress. I had only a few weeks to do it, so I started eating uber-healthy and took up a rigourous training regimen with a variety of forms of exercise, including running. I never really enjoyed running, but I recognized it was the best form of cardio with which to lose weight fast.
I started off slow using a walk-run interval training schedule (as described in my post Running Workouts for Martial Artists) that gradually got my body used to pounding the pavement. I used the Zombies, RUN! app to help keep me entertained during what I used to consider to be a boring activity. At first, it was a bit of a chore whenever it was a running day. It sometimes took a real force of will to get out there. Over time, it got easier and easier. After a while, I didn’t mind running so much, and nowadays, I look forward to it. My running days give me an excuse to be outside, get my heart pumping, and give me mental clarity as well as regular doses of endorphins. Now I get how people can become “addicted to running.”
I never really saw the appeal of races before, but now I am finding myself looking for new challenges, not necessarily for the opportunity to compete, but just to have some event to go to with friends that we can all train towards and look forward to. I decided that I would aim to enter 3 different races in 2013, the Spartan Race in North Vancouver, the Run for Your Lives race near Seattle, and the Vancouver Run for the Cure in October.
I have a number of friends and students who run and are interested in trying one or more of these races, so I decided to create the Run for Your Lives Running Group on Facebook. I want to use this group to help connect local runners I know, inside and outside the dojo, so we can motivate each other, plan participation in various races, find running partners, etc. If you’d like to join up, message the group on Facebook.
Do you run yourself? How do you find your motivation? How has it affected your life? Please share your thoughts in the comments. 🙂
Thanks for reading. I hope you have a happy and prosperous 2013! Happy New Year!