Monday, June 20, 2011

Love Hate Relationship

Hi everyone! I hope your Monday is going well :)

This morning at the gym, I decided to run on the treadmill as a majority of my workout. During and after my run, I realized that I have a strong love-hate relationship with running.

I generally love running, however, running often does not love me- or my body- back. This is a case of unrequited love.

Some of the reasons I love to run regularly are (note- these are personal reasons and should not be viewed as reasons for everyone to run):

*The famous "runner's high" - If I have a good run, I usually feel great afterward. I feel happy and ready to face the day ahead of me. I also have a sense of accomplishment and that contributes to a glass half-full kind of mood.

*It's a great for the health of my body - Running is a weight-bearing form of exercise, so not only is it working your cardiovascular system, but it helps keep your bones strong. This is especially important for us ladies since we are more prone to osteoporosis later in life.

*Running is an efficient calorie burner - Since running is a higher intensity activity than many other forms of steady-state cardio (such as walking and biking), it burns more calories in the same amount of time. Thus, I don't feel as guilty about eating a few extra snacks here and there.

*I really feel like I'm working hard when I run - Sometimes when I'm on the elliptical or some other cardio machine, I don't feel like I'm putting forth as much effort as I do when I run. If I'm going to take the time to workout, I want it to be worth it, otherwise- why bother?

*Running tones my thighs and stomach the way no other exercises have - Some runners get bigger legs, I on the other hand, tend to get smaller thighs when I run and I'm not going to lie- I like this. My thighs are the first place I gain weight, so anything that can make them smaller is a winner in my book. Also, my stomach tends to be flatter when I run on a consistent basis, and I'm not really sure why this is, but again I like it. Thus, I guess you could say it's a body confidence booster :)

*Running is not some complicated thing that you have to learn the moves to. You can do it when and where you want and at any pace. 

You would think that will everything I love about running, I would do it all the time. But I do not. Believe me, I've tried, but the consequences are usually not too fun. 

Here are the two reasons why running hates me when I try to do it consistently:

*My joints start to hurt - mainly my knees and ankles. If I run regularly, they hurt while I'm running, after a run, and during pretty much any other activity. It isn't just a little joint pain either- it hurts bad enough for me to feel uncomfortable throughout the day. I'm sorry, but I refuse to live a life in pain when I know it can be stopped.

*Running and my digestive system are not friends - My senior year of high school I had a lot of stomach issues and all doctor's could come up with is that I have irritable bowel syndrome. Running often makes my stomach either start to cramp or burn (kind of like heartburn but in the stomach) to the point that I often just want to cry. Also, running can induce a case of the runs (sorry if that grosses you out), and then I will feel sick to my stomach for the rest of the day. Um, not fun. The stomach issues also mean that I have to run at a fairly slow pace- which can be annoying because I would prefer to run faster. Yes, I've tried changing how I eat/drink and that doesn't help my tummy either.

Even though my love for running has more reasons than running's hate for me- I still cannot do it on a consistent basis. The hate outweighs the love in this case. Running multiple times a week is just not generally an option for me. Maybe here and there I can run numerous days in a row, but I can't keep it up for long before the hatred starts to kick in full force.

My stomach and joints are much happier when I do other forms of cardio. Part of the reason I've been trying to incorporate more interval workouts into my regimen is so I can feel like I've worked hard and because I get the same "runner's high" after doing them. And they are much more kind to me in return.

Anyway, I thought I would share with you why I tend not to run that much, nor that far even though I really wish I could. If you have any suggestions, feel free to share! 

Are there any types of exercise that you really like, but that do not like you back?


  1. totally feel ya on the love/hate thing

  2. I completely understand the love/hate with running thing. There are some days I'm so excited to go for a run and other days when I just hate it. But a good run, is SO good :)

  3. I think running is wonderful, but there are certainly other activities to do that are pain free! :)

    To run consistently, I have to stay on top of stretching, strength training, and having proper shoes. It also helps with managing pain, as I don't have any when I properly get ready to run. If I just 'go out for a run' without stretching or warming up, it's usually not a good one. Strength training also helps my joints (I believe) and keeps em' feeling good while running.

  4. I'm actually completely teh same on running.... while I ENJOY it for the most part and love how it hanges my body.. the negative effects arent always worth it to me. Being laid up with painful, tihgit joints for days is miserable!