Running Is The Most Selfish Thing I Do. By Karyn Cooper

TORONTO July 13th 2014. Karyn began running in 2011 when she randomly decided to run a few laps at a local gym. It was a stressful time, having struggled for years with infertility and miscarriage. Running those few laps seemed to lighten the stress and frustration. She then set a goal to train for and complete a 5k race. After crossing that finish line, she was hooked. Since becoming a mom in 2012, running became an even bigger part of her daily life. She has since completed several 5k’s, several 10k’s, and the 2013 Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Half-Marathon. Running allows Karyn to relieve stress, take time for herself, feel more confident, and be a healthy role model for her young son. Connect with Karyn on Twitter @coopkaryn and on her blog Run Karyn Run.

Running Is The Most Selfish Thing I Do. By Karyn Cooper.

Running is the most selfish thing I do.  I often complain about the challenges I face during training, but running actually gives back more than it takes.

People sometimes think I’m nuts for scheduling my life around training runs, running at night after a full day of work and toddler time, etc. My husband even rolls his eyes occasionally when I plan my life around training, but running has actually given me more than I ever imagined.

Running is selfish because it makes me look better. Despite struggling with blood sugar issues and post-baby body issues, I’m in the best shape of my life.  Sure, there are things that could be better, but I feel great about my 36-year old body.

Running is selfish because it improves my mental health.  Being a wife, mother, friend, daughter, sister, and full time employee can be tiring.  Running makes it all go away.  Running makes me happy.  Running makes me feel confident.  Running makes life better.

Running is selfish because it has created meaningful connections.  I am part of a running community.  I feel that sense of community whenever I read a blog about running, register for a run, go on Twitter, etc.  I AM a runner.  I BELONG to this community.  No one really cares how fast (or slow) I am or how far my most recent long run was.  Runners support other runners, and that’s all that really matters.  It’s awesome.

Lastly, running is selfish because it allows me to give back in ways that I never imagined.  Since I started running, I’ve been able to contribute to charities like the Canadian Diabetes Association, my local food bank, The David Busby Street Centre, Sick Kids Foundation, and more.  It’s been the most unexpected and rewarding thing about running.

So, running is something selfish that I do to enrich my life.  It’s starting to define who I am and it’s becoming intertwined with my values and beliefs.  It’s become the most amazing thing that I’ve ever done for myself.

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