We all have different reasons why we started running, and why we keep running - maybe it's for your physical health, your mental health, for companionship or something else. Here's a short video about some REI employees and why they run. We'd love to hear from you - why did you start running and why do you keep going?
I started running in my teens because I wanted to toughen up so I wouldn't feel so beat-up on the trail when I went backpacking or canoe-tripping. My inspiration was my Dad, who loved tennis. He ran to be in shape for tennis. He was running before there was a running-shoe industry. His advice was that you shouldn't play tennis to get in shape; you should get in shape to play tennis.
I continue to run - four decades later - for the same reason: to toughen up for the trail. But I also appreciate running for other reasons now: general health and well-being, a chance to get outside by myself every day (I alternate with cycling), and a way to unwind after school (I teach high school English). And I run in a place that has opportunities to see wildlife - bonus points!
I also feel like I'm remembering my Dad, who died a few years back (but who was still running well into his eighties).
@TomIrvine thanks for sharing! I got into running after my mom died, finding it a place to disconnect and reconnect at the same time, and used it as part of my grieving process. She wasn't a runner, but she was an avid outdoors-woman and I often felt her presence on my runs, especially when it was windy!
Yeah. Especially in the first few weeks after he died, I'd say it felt like I was running in his company.