Friday, April 26, 2013
Run or Die
When I was running today, I was listening to a podcast of “To the Best of Our Knowledge,” and one of the segments in the podcast expanded on the dramatic changes that occur in a persons’ life after having a near death experience. This was research about people who were living after having been clinically dead and then revived. The researcher reported that the patients’ lives were changed so dramatically and in a way that they could not fully express to others because the people around them simply could not understand the impact of the experience.
I have never been clinically dead and then revived, and thankfully so, but the first thing I saw when I got home was a running meme. It hit me that running is the same as a near death experience. Running has changed my life. I don’t always want to run. I am not fast. I don’t have the typical runner’s body type. I have not been running for very long. Despite these and other factors, I am a runner, and my life has changed drastically because of it.
It is sometimes weird when I talk about being a runner. I used to think it was stupid to say I was a runner at all when I had finished my first half marathon. Calling myself a runner to family, or with close friends, doesn't seem strange to me anymore because they understand what I mean when I say that I am a runner. I am slow and sometimes whiny, but I log my distance on a mostly consistent schedule. I still tend to shy away when I am talking to someone face to face. I feel like I am lying when I say it to someone I don’t know very well, yet at the same time, I have a hard time not talking about running with anyone and everyone. It just seems strange that something that meant nothing to me not so long ago, could suddenly mean so much to me now.