Growing up I never thought I would be a runner. In fact, I HATED running in High school. The only exposure I had was in conditioning for Soccer, it was the section of the soccer season that I hated more than anything else. I also, ran in gym class for the standard 1 mile, but certainly never pushed beyond that, maybe I would have run track in HS, since my long legs would have been pretty good for hurtles but we did not have a track team.
Then I got to college and was suddenly afraid of becoming a fat ass, gaining the dreaded Freshmen 15lbs. So I started running, even with the mileage I was putting in, I never thought I was actually a runner. I even trained for my first marathon, getting my pace under a 9 minute pace per mile! People would make comments about me being a runner, etc. but how could I possibly be a runner? It wasn't until I was injured that I realized that I am in fact a runner! It killed me to sit on the sidelines, not being able to run especially when the Doctors, MRIs and X-Rays all said that I was perfectly fine, but here take some pain killers and be on your way.
Really and truly becoming a runner was a conscious decision on my part and I think it is for just about everyone. You need to ask yourself, Am I willing to push through unknown amounts of pain and soreness? Will I stick my running to achieve the goals that I've set for myself? Am I willing to possibly have black toenails and burning through at least one pair of gym shoes a year? Those all sound like tough brutal questions that make running sound unbearable but there are the positive questions you need to ask yourself too. Am I willing to experience the indescribable joy at crossing the finish line? Am I ready to be supported by people that I've never even met before in your life? Am I ready to make great friends and reach for goals that I previously thought were unbelievably unattainable? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you my friend are a runner!
What about you? When did you realize that you are a runner?