It was college. Between a heavy course load, endless midterms (oh the joys of the quarter system), and a mild dose of homesickness, I was starting to lose myself to the fragile beginnings of stress, anxiety, and the horrible sickness of over-analyzing every situation. I was not happy. It was as simple as that.
I decided that I needed to do something to change my life, kick-start my health, and start living again. My answer was to start running and I haven’t looked back since.
Of course it was not as easy as that. I did a year of cross country in 8th grade, ran around the high school track a few times the summer before 11th grade; but by college, it had been a long time…too long. I think the most difficult step of starting any change in your life is simply the act of starting. It was difficult to just go out and run. I hated running in front of other people, so the gym was out of the question (plus I somehow can’t stand running on treadmills without getting bored out of my mind).
Eventually, I begin running outside in the evening (my campus was pretty safe). It started with once every few weeks, and progressed to twice a week. By this time I had fallen into a cycle where I needed to motivate myself to step out the door and run, but once I was running, and especially upon my return, I was excited about life again.
Then I started running in the morning and I remembered what it is like to wake up early. Now I run almost every day and I think every aspect of my life has improved because of it. Running is so much more to me than just a way of exercising. In fact, it has become an integral part of my life.