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5 things I’ve learned as a runner

Posted on July 03 2018


5 Things I've Learned as a Runner. 

I started running in the Spring of 2011 after our fourth child was born. I suffered from severe postpartum depression and post traumatic stress disorder as a result of nearly dying during childbirth. During this extremely difficult time, running became an outlet for me to get out of the house for 30 minutes, to challenge my body and mind, to meet new people. The first time I “ran”, it took me 25 minutes to go two blocks, but coming home and finishing felt amazing! Since first lacing up my shoes in 2011, I have ran 7 marathons, over 15 half marathons and countless 5ks and 10ks, but, I have also learned so much about running and myself during the past 7 years, too.

1. Everyone starts out somewhere, a mile in 7 minutes is the same distance as a mile in 25 minutes. As a runner, I have learned to not only push myself, but also to encourage others out there just starting. We all need to be each other’s cheerleaders and remember we all started out at the same spot…just putting on those running shoes and taking the first step.

2. You are stronger than you realize. The mind is very powerful, it can either push you to run that mile, that race or it can work against you. I have learned to quiet that little voice inside my head that has told me in the past “You don’t have to finish, you can stop”. I now hear that little voice telling me “You’ve got this, you will NOT stop”. I like that voice better.

3. Not every run is going to be good. Nine times out of 10, your run will be great, which is awesome! However, that one run, the run that sucks from the first step on the pavement, through mile 2, and all the way back home, will make you a better runner. Those crap runs aren’t just crap, they are there to quiet that voice in your head (see #2…you are strong!) and give you the grit and determination needed to get through the next run or race.

4. Running with friends or a group really does make a difference. I have had the pleasure of being a group leader for marathon training and half marathon training with the Chicago Area Runners Association for the past 3 years. Running with a group helps get you through those difficult miles, it helps with accountability to get out to run, it forges friendships and you always have an ear to listen to you. Don’t get me wrong, I love to run solo, but honestly, those runs are just not as fun.

 5. Don’t forget, someone is always watching you and looking up to you. My four kids are really my inspiration, I run to be healthy for them, to show them that their mommy is a strong woman, a mother runner who eats 26.2 miles for fun. My kids have all trained with me during some point of my 7 marathon trainings, either on their bikes or in the jogging stroller. It may not be your kids watching, it may be a neighbor, a random newbie runner or a seasoned runner, who may need a bit of inspiration or confidence to get going or keep going. Be the inspiration for them, keep them going.

Running all these years has not only changed me physically, but also emotionally and mentally. Running continues to save me, I now run all the miles with a smile, a hello and nod to others on the Chicago Lakefront path, knowing that something as simple as putting one foot in front of the other really is life changing.

Lisa Verdon

Miles & Pace Ambassador || Mom x 4 CPD wife Peds RN 26.2 x 6 13.1 x 17

📸 @lisarunschicago