The secret lie of runners

I have been a runner for pretty much my whole life. One of my earliest ‘sporting’ memories is having to make the choice between a blossoming (ha ha) ballet career or Little Athletics. They were both on Saturday mornings you see, one had to go.

As a teenager I did cross country and athletics at school and once I got to Uni, triathlon came into the picture. So still I ran, albeit with a bit of cycling and swimming thrown in for good measure. Once my triathlon days were done I returned to running because, y’know, it’s what I do. I ran my first marathon in Sydney and  half way through a great big smile broke across my face “Holy cow, I am actually running a marathon! I’ve wanted to do one of these things for AGES”.

Nowadays I run for exercise and for my sanity. And for the sanity of those around me. Just ask Mr X what kind of day he had yesterday because I didn’t go for my planned run. Is ‘angsty’ a word? I am pretty sure it’s not but it accurately sums up my mood on any day where I am supposed to do a run but don’t.

Now I know what you’re all thinking right now. You’re thinking “this is a nice story Kelly but where are you going with this?”

Well I just wanted to paint a picture for you because seriously, if there is anyone who ‘loves to run’ it’s me right? After all, I have been doing it by choice my whole life.

Sadly though, the secret lie of running is this. For the most part, it is actually not ‘fun’ at all.

Oh sure, you get those wonderful days where the sun is shining and your legs feel amazing and the whole thing is effortless. Or you find yourself on a beautiful soft trail up in the hills where the air is crisp and sweet. Or you run with a friend and have such an amazing chat that you don’t even notice the kilometres flying by and before you know it you’re done. But gosh those days are passingly rare.

The truth is, unless you’re a Kenyan marathoner, it’s HARD WORK moving your body forward on your own two feet at speed. Do you think running is hard because you’re unfit or you’re overweight or … whatever? Nope, running is just hard. Period.

So for those of us who run, why do we do it?

For one simple reason:

Because nothing, NOTHING feels as good as having been for a run.

Trust me on that one ;)



Do you run?

Do you agree with me?! Or not?! Share your thoughts in the comments!


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  1. says

    I do love to run! LOVE.

    And yo are right, the days when it feels fantastic for the whole run are far and few between. But that getting to the end, there really is nothing like that feeling. And that’s why I keep on doing it.

  2. says

    I so hear you on this. I dislike running greatly but I always feels so much better afterwards. I am having a few more of those moments where I have a glimpse of it being enjoyable but as you say they sure are rare! Thanks for the reminder that I am normal with how I am feeling. N x

    • says

      Definitely normal Naomi!! As you get fitter, it does get MARGINALLY easier … but the easier part tends to get erased by the fact that you just run faster.

      Which is why with running, Nike got it right. Just do it :)

  3. says

    I love running too but it’s been a struggle with sleep deprivation lately. I love the feeling afterwards but I also love that second lap when you get so exhausted your entire brain empties out all those mundane jumbled thoughts and you find yourself some clarity.

    • says

      It’s really ironic – when I am super tired and decide to have a sleep in, I am draggy all day from the lack of run! Sleep deprivation bites – it’s a bit of a lose lose situation isn’t it :(

  4. says

    Running is clarity, running is sanity, running is my freedom to eat some naughty stuff, running is what keeps me feeling like I can take on anything because after all I don’t enjoy it when I am out there but the serotonin is addictive.


  5. Lauren says

    Kel great read thanks and couldn’t agree more especially your one simple reason ?

  6. says

    Nope, not a runner. Never been a runner. Not even vaguely built like a runner. For a while, I did a little pretend-y performance, mainly to improve my performance on the Touch field (not really a Touch player either, btw). Now I have decided my running days are over (except to chase the Munchkin). But I’ll tell you what, going up the Lyrebird track near my home in the Dandenongs has a similar effect. It’s about 1.5km straight uphill (about a 300m rise) and then you still have to come down again, which I do by via a 3km track down. It feels a bit like you describe running… not a lot of fun at the time, but it feels REALLY good when you’ve done it!

    • says

      Ha! There is no such thing as ‘built like a runner’ ;)

      But, if you have no love for running at all, it’s a bit hard to do it! And it sounds like you do get the same effect from that Lyrebird track!

  7. says

    Hey Kel, could not agree more with your statement and loved ready your blog. Running as you know is all a mind game and I think that s what we both love about running, hope life is all good, go well in Busso, young lady.. All the best …. Dan xx

    • says

      Thanks for stopping by Dan – you and I are definitely on the same page with regard to running aren’t we? I will never forget that first meeting we had where we talked about running for half an hour before getting to the work stuff!! I am hugely looking forward to Busselton this weekend! It will be such fun!

  8. says

    So true! I am a runner. In my mind, it’s effortless – I can see myself bounding along, looking all fit and fast. In reality, its freaking hard. And if it’s not, then I know I’m not pushing myself enough. But there is no better feeling than at the end – and for the rest of the day, knowing that you worked hard and finished it off all drenched in sweat. That’s what I love.

  9. Karla says

    I wouldn’t say Im a runner, but I walk so fast I often break into a ‘jog’-ish type run.
    My two favourite places to do this walk/jog/run activity are 1 – Walpole in the South West of WA
    My husbands family have a farm down there, it excites me everytime we get ‘down to the farm’ that I can get out on the road, amongst the massive Karri trees and breathe that fantastic clean air, it really is sensational. (Ive had more than one encounter of the kangaroo kind)
    The other is West Coast Dr, Hillarys or Sorrento, however my last effort was dismal, its a long way from home for me, but I made the effort, got stuck in terrible traffic, finally got their and my iPod was flat, annoyed….carried on music and inspiration-less but then got pelted with wind, rain and sandy salty sea spray, gave up after 20 minutes, I was sad :(

    The universe did not want me to exercise on this given day !

    • says

      Oooh I love running in the Karri forests down that way Karla – the air is AMAZING!! And I also spend a lot of time on that stretch of coast between Trigg and Hillarys – it’s not far from home for me. Sorry your last run there didn’t go so well, but hey – you did it!!

  10. Theresa says

    Oh cute post and so true! Yes I am a runner :) Been conquering running 5km every week for the last few months – and ..nothing does feel as good as that run!!! Lovely to have met your blog as I am passionate about the “less frantic life” bit on your blurb – that is me, less frantic, the ministry of availability is how I describe my free time!!! (full time mum of 2 ages 5 and 7) xxoo