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I am not a runner.

When I first ran with the Fishtown Beer Runners in 2008, the emphasis was definitely on the ‘beer’ part for me. Now, five years later, it still is.

 I kept hoping to catch this running bug everyone seemed to have. I wanted to fall in love with running. I wanted to have this great story about how it changed my life. I wanted talk about what races I signed up for. I wanted to laugh at running jokes. I wanted to buy  running clothes. I wanted to call myself a “runner”. 

 For me, running pretty much sucks. Every step brings a battle in my head, “I want to stop / No keep going you lazy shit / What if I stop at the next corner? / No you can make it further / Ouch, it hurts / Shut up it’s not that bad” and on and on.  Every step brings new pain, “My foot hurts / My calf hurts / I can’t breathe / My elbow hurts…wait why does my elbow hurt? / Nevermind, I banged it yesterday / For real though, my shins do hurt”.

Luckily I met Sam & Suzann at beer runners and we ran at the same pace. We’d look for shortcuts to the bar and usually keep it around 3 miles. Even though running sucked, I could force myself 3 miles. There would be beer.

 After a few of those beers one Thursday night Suzann said ‘Let’s do Broad St’. I heard they had a lottery to get in and I figured we probably wouldn’t. Why not sign up and then I could claim, “Oh yeah, I really wanted to run it but I didn’t get in.”  Joke was on me though, because we got in. As I was trying to figure out how to give our registrations back, Suzann downloaded a training program and scheduled our first run. In a few weeks we were up to a 5 mile run. This was new territory for us–everything after 4 miles became a new personal record for both of us.

 Fast forward and we both completed the Broad Street. Our goal was to run the whole time without stopping–and we did it. Awesome! Um, what are we supposed to do now? The Philly Half was coming up in November. Since we made it 10 miles it wasn’t that much of a stretch to think we could add 3 more miles. Again, we downloaded a training program and set a goal of finishing it and running the whole way. Happy to say, “We did it!!”

Shouldn’t I like running by now?!

 I don’t. The only thing I like about running is when it’s over. I love feeling that much accomplishment. “It’s only 9am and look how much I got done already!”

I guess for me the question becomes, “Do I love this sense of accomplishment more than how much I hate running?”

What’s next? The Love Run? The Hot Chocolate Run? Another Broad St? Let me get a beer and give this some thought…

—Amy Bond

Editor’s Note:

Amy Bond captures well the love/hate relationship many of us have with running.   I believe the benefit of social running is the support and encouragement runners of all levels receive.  I’m proud that FBR is a place where new and experienced runners come to together in a friendly atmosphere to socialize and help each other reach goals.  What Amy doesn’t realize is that she indeed is a runner…a half marathoner!  Because she enjoyed the social aspects of FBR she, Suzann and Sam returned week after week.  Her consistency and running with her FBR friends on additional days enabled her to reach a goal she never thought possible.  Congrats Amy, you are indeed a runner, and of course a discriminating beer drinker.

–David April