Fitness or Social???

I was not athletic as a kid.  In fact, I was quite a clutz.  I didn't play on any sports teams.  So I would never have imagined my life so fitness-focused now.  But what I'm wondering is when my life turned the corner from lunch dates to running dates, from sleeping in to early rising, from meeting people at a park to meeting people at races.  When did I start having relationships based on meetings at the gym and at runs and races?  And I'm not talking about just surface-y casual meetings.  I meet up with some of my favorite people while exercising.  It may have started when Amie, Sarah, and I would meet on the treadmills at least once a week, or when I started attending my friend, Elaine's, bodyworks class and then driving to races with her.  And now, my Thursday running dates with Jenn and Robin along with my Tuesday running dates with Pat.  And then my whole friendship with Emily developed on the treadmill at LA Fitness (our kindergarteners are in class together)... and now we have it on the plan to meet up there three times next week. 

Not only am I developing relationships, but I am creating accountability.  When people know I am supposed to be there, I better get up and get there.  I had to cancel on Emily twice this week (once because I thought Paige might be sick - turned into nothing, and once because another friend really needed my help with something), and I felt awful about it... like I was letting someone else down.  And this weekend I'll be meeting a new friend.  We connected through this blog (and coincidentally have a couple of mutual friends as well).  We'll be running together with my friend, Jenn.  Should be a blast.

I've had people comment before on the blog wishing he/she had someone to go on a run with or to the gym.  I spent a lot, a lot of time going alone, running alone.  And even when you meet another runner - are they the same pace?  do they even like to run with other people?  do they prefer music or conversation?  (Of course, I've talked a few people into converting from music to conversation.  ;-)  )  Not to mention if they are even free or willing to run at the same times as you.  My outdoor runs on Tuesdays and Thursday are at 5am so we can all get home before our husbands have to head to work.  Not just anyone will get up at 4:30 so they can meet-up at 5am.  My runs with Emily are at 8am, right after we both drop our kids at school, and they are at the gym, where I can have care for Paige.  Long runs, I'm more often alone, although occassionally someone will come with me.  I have to play those by ear though and plan around my race schedule, and Peter's tennis schedule.

Anyhow, all this babbling to say that I thank God everyday that He has put people in my life that keep me going, keep me motivated, keep me accountable, and keep running enjoyable.  Some of my running dates are therapeutic (even this morning when I wimped out at mile 6 and had to walk the last mile).

(Shirt to the left is from One More Mile, and can be found HERE.)

friends, running, socialLesley Jones