Photographed By Kava Gorna.
I used to hate running. As a fitness editor, I was well aware of all the health benefits associated with the sport, and while I would occasionally convince myself to pound the pavement, that didn’t mean I enjoyed doing it. I loved boot camp classes and I lived for indoor cycling, but simply going for a jog was something I could easily do without.
Yet, I stuck with running because I was determined to learn to like it (at least a little bit). I logged my miles, slowly increasing the distance. Finally, I had that mid-run moment where everything clicked. Instead of struggling to make it to the end, I found my groove and began enjoying each step. My heart was pounding, yet I was at ease. I'm still not very fast, but that doesn't matter; I run because it makes me feel good and lets me explore new places.
That’s why today, National Running Day, is extra-special to me. Everyone from the hard-core marathoner to the casual jogger to the running-curious has a reason to lace up and celebrate. Here are three unique ways to enjoy the day:
1. Save: Score a discount on future races. The Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon Series is offering $20 off registration if you sign up today for one of their upcoming races (ranging from a 5K to a full marathon) in cities across the U.S.
2. Watch: The documentary Hood to Coast follows four teams as they set off on a 199-mile relay race. Even couch potatoes will be inspired by this film. Also, debuting online this afternoon is Finding Strong, a film by Saucony, made in collaboration with Runner’s World, which looks at how running empowers people around the globe.
3. Donate: If you are planning to take a few laps around the park today, earn money for organizations such as Every Mother Counts and The Nature Conservancy with each step. Just log your run through Charity Miles; the app donates 25 cents for every mile.
So, go ahead, lace up, and run the world — and share what your National Running Day entails in the comments below.