“An activity that should only really be attempted during a zombie apocalypse.”
I hate running. I’m going to put it out there. When I run, I don’t take time to think about the trees, or nature, or enjoy the wind in my hair. I think “when the hell can I stop running?” Every step fuels a desire to just walk, or go home and watch Archer. I don’t get a runner’s high and I feel absolutely knackered afterwards. But every weekend morning (give or take the odd one) I put on my trainers and head to the river for 3.75 km (I know – it’s the shortest run ever!) of an activity that should only really be attempted during a zombie apocalypse.
I like to listen to music or an audiobook when I run. An audiobook slightly distracts from the internal monologue of “when can I stop?!” but unfortunately I sometimes get distracted with the listening and realise I’m walking. I literally forget I should be running because I’m too busy listening to what Bridget Christie is talking about! My music choices are almost exclusively pop punk tunes – currently New Found Glory’s From the Screen to your Stereo album. Their version of Iris is one of my favourite things. I did once jog past a misty cemetery while listening to the hidden track on Placebo’s Without You I’m Nothing album. Genuinely did feel like I was in a zombie apocalypse movie then…. Sadly this was when I’d just started running and could barely manage 1k without feeling like my lungs would explode. Now I get to at least 2 before I feel like I want to cut my feet off to avoid ever doing this again.
So why do I run? Because I am naturally a fat person and that makes me uncomfortable. Call me vain, call me irrational, but if my size 12 trousers don’t fit, I don’t feel like me. Unfortunately, I love cakes, chocolate, pizza, baklava – all stuff that makes you fat. And basically if I look at a slice of garlic bread I put on a stone. So in order to eat at least some of the foods I enjoy, I need to do some exercise. I dance and do yoga too, but on the weekends I run. And you know what? I’m kind of ok with what the scales are saying at the moment.
I am also trying to impress my Fitbit. On my birthday (32nd) I purchased a small purple cheerleader that keeps track of my every move. “You can do it!” it cries. “6,000 steps Rosie – you’re awesome!” And it gives me badges when I hit certain goals. One of them is called Penguin March. I’m rewarded with a favourable comparison to the most adorable of flightless birds just for moving! But here’s the thing – if there’s a target in place, I must hit it…. And my morning run gets me mighty close to my daily steps target BEFORE BREAKFAST! Hitting a target is one thing, but doing it before you have your crumpets is an achievement of kings!
So even though I don’t like running, I do like praise, even if it’s from a watch.