Sunday, September 8, 2013

Seriously, It's Fun

There's an older gentleman at work who lives a couple miles away from me (not my boss I mentioned the other day, who also lives in the vicinity, but a semi-retired former partner of the firm) and sees me out running occasionally. He's a friendly, chatty guy who likes to get know people, so he checks in with me every so often as to how my running and marathon training is going. 

The other day I mentioned that my long runs weren't quite where I wanted them to be, and I wasn't sure if I'd do another marathon in the foreseeable future, but was still enjoying running as a challenging hobby.

"A hobby? How is running a hobby? It's an activity, exercise, it's not a hobby."

It's not an uncommon response. Whenever I say that I run because it's "fun", people question that, assume that I'm stating that to... I don't know, be politically correct? Justify spending time on exercise? Many people will at least accept that it's fun to have the feeling of accomplishment after a run, but not that the running itself is fun.

Certainly, the runner's high is a nice feeling! I like aiming for and meeting challenging goals. But why is it so unbelievable that the running itself is also enjoyable? Not every time; sometimes I just slog through the miles, to stick to the training schedule or burn the calories. But often, an easy run, feeling your body moving without arduous effort, or a speed workout, proving again and again that your body is capable of more than you realized... that truly is fun!


  1. Oh wow! What an interesting response! I totally think of it as an enjoyable hobby. I mean, if I didn't enjoy it, why would I do it? And also... while I started it for health, I have stuck with it at many different weights!

    1. I know, right? Even if the occasional run is miserable, I wouldn't devote this kind of time to a hobby - regardless of exercise - that I didn't enjoy most of the time! I don't know if it's because I seem/appear unathletic, or something along those lines?


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