Not Meant to be a Runner

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If I was meant to be a runner,
I would have been given the gift of speed,
Not the meandering pace of a tortoise.

If I was meant to be a runner,
I would have the elegant stride of a gazelle
instead of the waddling trudge of an intoxicated penguin.

If I was meant to be a runner,
The outdoors would call to me
Louder than my couch does,
Louder than the TV
Louder than Oreos or ice cream.

I was sure that the running life wasn’t for me
That these knees weren’t made for running
And this body shape wasn’t meant for mileage
Until I began watching runners
And I noticed
That many of them
Looked
Just
Like
Me.

Slow runners
Old runners
Big runners
Small runners
All doing one thing in common.

Running.

So I stopped worrying about my speed
And ceased complaining about my stride
Instead I found a pace
That was uniquely my own
And running was no longer a dreaded pursuit
But rather an outlet
To push myself
And find myself
To stretch my horizons
And harness my strength.
To find inspiration
By challenging myself
To go one
More
Mile.

Maybe you weren’t meant to be a runner
Your knees complain loudly
Your lungs don’t comply
And being a sweaty mess
Isn’t your style.
But you can still run.

You can still lace them up
And get out the door
Finding that with each attempt
Your stamina grows
Your lungs adapt, and
Your confidence emerges
And eventually you realize
Running might not have been your destiny
But it has become your journey
Your road
Your trail and
Your path.

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8 thoughts on “Not Meant to be a Runner

  1. Oh yes, elegant stride of a gazelle. Don’t we wish we all had that. You’ve made a great point for embracing running: just show up and you be you, there is no need to compare yourself, one foot in front of the other. Happy running, friend!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I keep thinking I want to get back to running. Well, running is exaggerating. Jogging is what I do. My pace is slow, my lungs don’t enjoy any hills. When I ran a couple of years ago, thirty minutes was my goal, which I reached. Now I’m back to the beginning and I jog some days but not regularly. I am trying to at least go for a walk regularly but oh how the couch calls my name and the oreos and ice cream!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I sense determination within the words. Especially how you formed the stanzas like:By challenging myself
    To go one
    More
    Mile.

    Love it. I myself want to run a marathon soon (a 5 year goal if you will). My longest distance is a 10 mile torture run. I have a new perspective because of this post. Thanks for that!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Best wishes on the marathon goal. I had no intention or desire to ever run one, until I went to cheer on a colleague. When I saw runners of all shapes, sizes and ages attempting 26.2 miles, I knew I had to give it a go. This year, I’ll be running my 10th, 11th & 12th marathons. And I’m not a born runner! The inspiration from others was a great starting point for me!

      Like

  4. Cool insights you’d shared on what you’ve learned as a runner. The fourth stanza is brilliant – noticing that you look just like the others runners.

    More sweet lines:

    And eventually you realize
    Running might not have been your destiny
    But it has become your journey

    This poem would give any novice runner hope and a plan to continue through the difficult stuff…

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, as always, for your kind feedback. I realize running isn’t for everyone, but many friends and colleagues close the door to running before ever really giving it a try. My hope was that my words would somehow inspire someone to see that the only thing required to becoming a runner, is to run.

      Like

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