Worth it in the long run

Emily Allard, Backpage Editor

One thing about high school that I never could have been prepared for is the surprisingly exhausting task of climbing the cursed school stairs. Trekking up the stairs outside the gym after a grueling PACER test might be the most dehumanizing thing I’ve ever done. Those stairs do not care who you are. They’ll have you questioning everything before you’ve made it halfway up. 

There’s only one group of people who are safe: runners. 

After just a few weeks of my freshman year cross-country season, those stairs had nothing on me. My friends would worship me after seeing me effortlessly clear the stairs two at a time. I had never felt better about myself in my life. This didn’t change the fact that running was still painful and the last thing I felt like doing sometimes. But, it did give me a reason to stick with it. 

Running does so many amazing things for our bodies. It can help promote better sleep and increased energy. Personally, I’ve found that when I’m running consistently, I’m way less likely to fall asleep to the melodious tones of my teachers’ voices. Running can also improve memory and reduce stress. This in combination with no longer nodding off in the middle of math class is a recipe for success. 

Or if you’re still nodding off in the middle of math class, at least a run can clear your mind and help you forget that you don’t understand the unit circle. Some of the most profound and therapeutic conversations I’ve ever had have taken place while running through the backwoods of Liberty. Or if you go by yourself, running and crying in a fit of angst through your neighborhood can do wonders too. 

Probably one of the best things running can give you is insane confidence and a follow-through mentality. If I can handle a 5k, I can definitely handle a few hours of a grueling APUSH test in May. The determination and motivation you need to follow through on a run can be applied everywhere else and make things that are normally uncomfortable feel a lot more doable. 

The greatest thing about running is that anyone can do it, even if they feel like they can’t. You don’t need to pay any money to be able to run through your neighborhood like you would to use a gym. You can find a schedule that works for you and run as much or as little as you want. The first few runs might be uncomfortable, but in the long run, it all pays off.