Do you deep down wish you had the freedom to just go running? Think about it for a minute. Do you wish you could have the self-satisfaction of saying "yeah, I ran a half marathon." ?? Have you always kind of wanted to go run but you just never did?
Do you wish you had an emotional outlet other than crying in the confines of your bedroom reading novels like Still Alice or Olive Kitteridge?
Do you wish you were cooler? Because running makes you cooler.
Have I convinced you? Or is there a list of "reasons" you don't go running? Wait, let me guess.
You don't have time.
You don't know how.
Running is boring.
It's not your thing.
More reasons here.
Blah blah blah.
These aren't reasons, they are excuses. Reasons would be something like "I have no feet." That would be a perfectly valid reason to not go running.
The first step is just getting off your ass.
Running is way more than exercise, it's a sport. It's meditational and therapeutic. It can be adventurous. It can be social.
The worst argument is that you "don't have time." You don't have time NOT to run. Sitting on your ass reading this right now is taking time off the end of your life, arguably when you're already going to be senial, but didn't you read somewhere that active people maintain their mental capacity longer than inactive people? No? I don't know but that could totally be a thing.
Going for a run is like making time for yourself. You only have one body. You only have one mind. And in the end, the only person looking out for you, is you. The best part about half marathon training is it doesn't really take that much time, especially if you're already exercising, which you should be. If you're already exercising thirty minutes a day 6 days a week, then you only have to add about another hour of training per week, and you're there.
And there's no arguing that you physically can't run. Running is a very natural thing for the body to do. We start running when we're kids, before we are forced to do it we're just doing it for fun. Unless you grew up completely inside, and even then I would have a hard time imagining you didn't run indoors. You at least ran around to play with your friends or parents or super cool aunt and uncle that lived in California but came to visit you once a year.
But running is boring.
??!?!! Geez, just no. If you get bored running then maybe stop running on the treadmill and get outside. Are you still running on a treadmill? Treadmills are a life suck. Think about it. You're running and running and you're NOT MOVING. Of course you're bored. You've tricked your mind and it's fighting back. Get outside, go to the park, download an audiobook. Heck, a free trial of Audible might last you through an entire half marathon training cycle if you do it right. Not to mention the 1000's of free podcasts ranging in topics from Irish history to vegan body building. Podcasts have got to be the number two boredom-buster for runners, right after just actually enjoying running. Pro tip: download podcasts in the comfort of your wi-fi enabled house to avoid data overages.
But what if I'm bad at running? Who. Freaking. Cares. You are probably worse at a lot of things that you still do than you are/would be at running. Most people are bad at dental hygiene but they still make an effort. Tons of people totally suck at their jobs (I'm looking at you United Airlines customer service agents) but they still show up.
So I've debunked the myth that you can't run or shouldn't run and also given you reasons to think about why you might like to start running.
But I'm not in the business of convincing you a half marathon is the answer to your life's problems. It might be, though. What if it is? I was down on life before I took up running, but being able to accomplish things throughout training and racing and pushing myself, even if I never told anyone about it, which I often didn't, just plain made me feel better.
But why should I actually do the half marathon?
There is nothing "lame" or "easy" about running a half marathon. If it was lame or easy, I wouldn't do it, so that's total proof. It's not an accomplishment you can just brush off, like being the first person in your family to get their GED. Sure, there are plenty of people who enter half marathons just to do it and don't train past being able run a 10k and then walk the second half of the race after starting out at an 8:30 pace. These people check it off their bucket list and move on. But running a half marathon isn't a bucket list accomplishment. Running a half marathon is a gateway to health and fitness and happiness and longevity.
You're not going to be one of those people who start out too fast and then are miserable the whole time. You're going to train. The BIGGER accomplishment than the race is inarguably the training. Training takes discipline. Simply finishing a half marathon takes $80 and a Saturday morning. Sure, running 13 miles is an achievement on its own, but actually finishing the half marathon is only the tail end of it. The real achievement, folks, is the months of training that took you from where you were to where you are. You had to be disciplined. You had to sometimes overcome pain. You had to push yourself. You had to literally take your body from a place where it couldn't even think about running that far to a place where you could and did.
The training is the self-discovery. The discovery that you can keep going long after you want to quit and long after you thought you would have quit. This is why I run - because I love knowing that I can push through all kinds of physical pain, mental fatigue and emotional defeat. When you truly push yourself, running can actually hurt. I'm not even talking about an injury, (those should be avoided by following a training plan that's right for your fitness level), I'm talking about being sore after hard workouts, being sore during hard workouts, and still being sore from your last workout and about to start another.
I'm totally the type of person who doesn't want to do what everyone else is doing. I hate trendy. I hate gimmicks. I would definitely be the person who read this and thought, I don't want this person telling me what I should do or what's good for me.
I just can't stop feeling like everyone should know how great this thing is I've found. Not telling everyone about how great running is would be like having the best sandwich of your life and not texting your sister about it. Or adopting an insanely cute puppy and not posting pics on Facebook. I mean, that's basically inconceivable.
Running isn't an annoying meme, or leggings as pants (guilty), or Uggs, or kale. It's not something you can just resist until people stop wearing it or using it or eating. Running is way too awesome to be trendy... and so are you.