I’ve been running since seventh grade. Wow, I feel old.
I grew up with my best friends on our cross country and track teams, and I loved every second of the craziness and intense workouts. I look back and think, how in the world did nine miles on a Saturday morning seem easy? It was nuts. Runners are all nuts.
Now in my twenties, it gets harder and harder to work out, let alone go for a solid long-distance run. During the past three years in college, I've definitely slowed down and my endurance is not up to cross country standards anymore.
And that is okay.
We all have busy schedules with school, work, social life, and extracurricular activities, but one of the most valuable things I’ve learned is to make room for “me” time. Running may seem like a huge hassle, but once you get out there, it is the perfect time to release stress and to have time to yourself. You can’t constantly check your phone, which is such a relief. Instead, you can think about life, relationships, God, your day. Or, let your mind wander and see what happens. More often than not, after a workout you will be more focused and motivated to get serious work done.
I understand we aren’t all runners, but walking is the next best thing. Walking lowers the pressure and strain on your joints, and you can burn a ton of calories when you get moving and add hills.
Pro tip: Pump your arms up when you walk to naturally increase your walking pace. You may think it looks funny walking fast with arms pumping, but I guarantee it makes a workout ten times more valuable.
Lastly, remember working out provides endorphins, and endorphins make you happy. (Thanks, Elle.) Who doesn’t want happiness, plus rocking legs, from running and walking?
Be well, Auburn.
Photography: Cat S.
Susan loves the Lord, skiing, traveling, and anything adventurous. She’s been to twenty-five countries, and her favorite part about traveling is the food and experiencing the places off the beaten path. She’s an avid runner, and loves eating omelets after a good morning run.