Lessons learned from a habitual outdoor runner

Why run?

people doing marathon

Photo by Snapwire on Pexels.com

I’ve had these questions asked in various ways.

  • Why do you run?
  • Why don’t you run races?

You know, there is this 5k here or this 10k there or this half-marathon, marathon, etc. Or the “you should” statements come out frequently along the same lines. Other questions that baffle the non-runners include:

  • Why would you run if no one is chasing you?
  • What is your motivation to run every day?

It’s sort of comical now after all these years and I usually answer with something like “running is my time,” “it’s what I like to do to stay healthy,” “I like to eat a lot.” These are all elements of running for me, but not all. There are books about getting in the “flow” when running and there are times I can relate to that, but most days, not so much.

I do find running provides health┬ámaintenance, but I’ve really come to the point where my morning is more of a meditation, learning, and me-time which I just happen to do while running 8+ miles. That 1.5-hour slot opens my day, and I would miss it terribly if I couldn’t exercise to start my day. The nice thing is I don’t hurt or have any real recovery time needed to do this routine.

I was reading today about folks who do like real runs and racing. I was reading about people who do 100-mile runs in 12+ hours. Wow, that pace and endurance must require a lot of training, and that’s cool for them. I do think about this kind of running from time to time, I’m just not sure that’s where I want my running to take me.

I do like to run in new places, new cities, parks, etc. When the surroundings are new, the miles seem to go by so quickly and with less effort.


Low Traction Running


Mississippi River Run


  1. Great way to start the day! Running in new places is invigorating. When travelling, I used to pack clothes to work out in the hotel fitness room. Success rate was well below 50%. Since I started running outside, I am at least 80% effective at getting in a good workout.

    • Jerry Schotz

      I agree, Denny – Traveling is a bit more challenging since taking up a daily running routine, especially in the colder months. The additional clothing and accessories to adjust for conditions complicate things, but so worth it!

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