Part two of How to Start Running comes to Runner’s Delight from Tami, a friend I made on the very last day of high school (no joke!). Our friendship status aside, we started running at very different moments in our lives, and for very different reasons. Tami is the baker and author of Every Day Bites, and share stories and photography from her travel experiences, too. Without further delay, here’s Tami’s take on why she started running, and how she keeps trucking.
So far my life can be neatly divided into two categories: before I decided to move to Italy and after I decided to move to Italy. But I could phrase that another way: before I was a runner and now that I am a runner.
Why I started running is simple: the food in Italy is too good. I was living in Rome and enjoying all that the city had to offer… gelato, pasta, pizza, bread, fresh mozzarella, prosciutto, sfogliatelle and let’s not forget the wine! Italy is a food lover’s paradise and I was determined not to miss out on a single experience! Every new town I traveled to had it’s own specialty and every new country had a whole new cuisine to explore. It was heaven on earth!
Then the inevitable happened… I started to notice my clothes getting a little tight. Jeans not fitting quite as nicely, shirts pulled a little tight. As an au pair/English teacher with a limited budget, running was the cheapest form of exercise. So I began my running life in Rome, out of necessity. First just around my neighborhood… or shall I be honest and say just around my block? Eventually my runs got longer and more interesting. I even began to bring my running shoes with me when I traveled… I ran all over Italy, Spain, France, Switzerland, Germany. And a funny thing happened along the way, yes I eventually lost the weight (though honestly that would have happened naturally when I returned to the states), but I also found the silence.
And that is why I still run. I run to quiet the critic. I run to calm the chatter. I run to remember who I am between the unrequested opinions and the well-meaning advice. Because sometimes it’s hard to remember who said what. And who wants what. And so I run. To listen. To hear. To silence the noise. To quiet the doubt. To be me. In those silences. Between what they want and what they want I can sometimes hear what I want. So I keep running. And around mile five or six I settle into my stride and I’m literally only watching the world go by. Not over-analyzing last nights conversation with my boyfriend. Not worrying about work tomorrow. Not even thinking about those last five pounds that every woman is constantly trying too lose. I’m alive. I’m aware. And I’m just running.