Glorified Pain

This is officially my first entry in my new blog Active Runner.  The Idea to create this blog first came to me as a way to record the progress of my distance runners, I’m coaching Track at Layton High School, and by recording their progress, I’m recording my progress as their coach.  I think this blog could become much more than that.

Running isn’t the worlds most popular sport, the reasons for this I can’t be sure of.  It may have something to do with pain.  Yes, running is painful, especially when you are first starting.  but who doesn’t enjoy a good hard run?  The answer to that question is… most everyone.  But running until you puke has got to have some health benefits right? The answer to that question is… most definitely.  The saying that we have all heard our entire lives, “No Pain No Gain,” could not be more true in running.

My distance runners showed up the first day of practice and I’m not sure exactly what they were expecting.  A few of them ran for me last year so they may have had a better idea. I asked, out of the group, how many of them had been running during the winter season, the answer I received was zero.  Now I’m not such a mean coach as to make them all run until they puke on the first day.  Not one of them would return if I did. but, whatever work out I devise for these so called “runners”, they are going to feel pain.  Why? because the are all out of shape!

Now the first week of practice is done and over with and we are in the middle of the second.  My runners are in much better shape now.  but guess what, that doesn’t mean the pain is at an end.  In order to improve in running you’ve got to push until it hurts.  in order to improve your distance, you’ve got to go longer than you have ever gone before, which causes pain.  In order to improve speed, you’ve got to go longer, as well as, harder than you have ever gone before, which causes more pain.

Now I realize this article is probably scaring you.  So lets move on to the good stuff, the “Gain” part of running.  Seeing your times and distances improve each week is one gain.  Seeing your body transform from flab to fit is a life changing one!  Running outside in the sun and enjoying nature is another.  And the gains keep coming; running a 5K without dying, setting a personal record, winning your first race, entering races you never thought possible, and learning to love running because you are now stronger and can handle the pain are all gains you can accomplish.  I have accomplished quite of few gains on that list and I used to despise running.  I was a lot like some of my track runners.  I didn’t know what I was getting into when I started.  My coach at Layton High (Joe Losik) pushed me harder than anyone has ever pushed me before and that has made all the difference.  Never did I think while in high school track that  I would become the new head track coach one day.  I Never thought I run again after track ended.  I now run every day and love it.    I personally think those gains out weigh any pain I felt towards the sport.

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