This morning I came back from my workout and was informed that I had an obsession with running. Now I know that I love running, but when put in terms of “obsession”, it sounds like it’s a bad thing. Obsession can be defined as the “domination of one’s thoughts or feelings by a persistent idea, image, desire, etc.” Ok, yes I admit, I think about running a lot and now that I’m working at Runologie, I talk a lot about running too. But I don’t know if I would say I’m obsessed with running by the dictionary definition. I do think about other things. For example, the food I’m going to eat after a run, the clothes I’ll need to keep me warm during a cold run, and even the schools around the Raleigh area (with tracks open to the public). So obsessed? Ok, maybe.
The more I got to thinking about it, the more I began to realize that even if I am obsessed with running, that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. As human beings, don’t we all have our quirks? Work, money, clothes, tv shows, books, cooking, shopping, fast cars, music, video games, etc. We all have these things that preoccupy a lot of our thoughts, and more than likely, you don’t view your “thing” as a bad thing. It’s just what you love to do. However, some people may call it an obsession. But really, who are we to judge?
I love running. It makes my heart happy. It is not the only thing my life is about, but it is a big part of my life. Yes, it has caused me more physical pain than probably anything else ever has, but I call that an obstacle, not an end. Did the chef with tongue cancer give up cooking? No. Instead, he opened up one of the top restaurants in the world, Alinea. It’s probably fair to say that he’s obsessed with cooking. And that’s ok. Did Meb Keflezighi let a hip fracture put an end to his running career? No. He cross trained like crazy and then came back to win the 2009 New York City Marathon. And the obvious one… Did Steve Jobs let getting fired from his own company stop him? Nope. He came back to change the technology world as we know it today.
I think it’s fair to say that all of these individuals had an obsession with their respective careers, which isn’t a bad thing. And although I may not be changing lives or the world with my running, that doesn’t make my obsession bad. It’s just what I love to do. So if anybody ever says you’re crazy for running a marathon, or waking up at 5:00 am to get in a quick run, or perhaps running through a pregnancy, it’s okay. Everybody has their thing, and yours just happens to be running. Enjoy it!
Happy Trails and Happy Running,