BQ Or Bust 014 Running Never Gets Easier, You Have To Have Fun

To watch BQ or Bust 014 on YouTube, CLICK HERE.

FINALLY! A BREAKTHROUGH!

When I was getting ready to run the NYRR's Oakly Mini 10K, I didn't have a goal. My coach Josh Maio didn't give me any splits to hit or specific instructions like start fast and get faster which to me meant that he wanted me to have fun. (I'm not totally sure if that's what he wanted, I should have asked but I was excited about running for fun.) So I toed the line with a bunch of my friends and we took off ready to have fun.

I was loud, energetic, and most importantly, I was having a great time! I was hooting and hollering at each mile mark and when we hit mile 2, I realized I was on track for a PR so I decided to go for it. The race was HARD. Easy is not a word I would describe what I experienced but the high I felt after hitting my goal was UNPARALLELED. I was finally able to push through the discomfort and get myself to pick up the pace even though I wanted nothing more than to pull back and get comfortable.

I felt incredible and it was a big day for me. I really needed to prove to myself that I was able to get uncomfortable and hit my time goal. I have such an easier time running by feel in lieu of running to hit splits on my watch. Whenever I look at my watch, I get overwhelmed or frustrated! I worry about falling short or going too fast. Then I stop being present and I panic and then I stop having fun.

When I have fun, that's when I'm most present. I don't focus on the next mile, I focus on what is happening in the moment and being present is the secret to running. I've put a lot of pressure on myself to have a "good day". While I think there are good days, I have to stop using them as an excuse for the days when I fall short. Running faster or stronger is never going to be comfortable. I will never get strong enough for that faster pace to feel easy. I need to just go for it and remember that the feeling I get after I finish is infinitely more rewarding than the discomfort I feel during. That high and sense of accomplishment makes every painful step worth it.

Until next time, #RunSelfieRepeat.

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Kelly Roberts

It all started when a silly joke made headlines back in 2014 when I took selfies with hot guys “hottie hunting” my way through the New York City Half Marathon. But ironically enough, I haven't always been a runner. As the self-proclaimed former President of the "I f*cking hate running club", I spent most of my life finding ways to avoid physical activity. Growing up, I missed over 70 days of PE my senior year. Working out was something I thought I had to suffer through in order to lose weight. 

Then, in 2009, my younger brother passed away unexpectedly and struggling to manage my grief, I gained more than 75 pounds. With the weight gain came a new fight to regain my sense of self and learn to love the body I saw when I looked in the mirror. Then one Thanksgiving morning, drowning in grief and self doubt, I decided to go for a run. I didn't make it half way down my street before I had to stop to walk but for some reason, struggling forward made more sense than getting back into bed. It turns out that running is a lot like grief, neither ever really get easier, you just get stronger. 

Over time, I realized that while some people are in fact born runners, others are made. I created this blog Run, Selfie, Repeat and my new podcast by the same name with the hopes to inspire others to say yes to themselves while making them laugh hysterically because laughing, in my opinion, is the solution to everything. 

Named by Women's Running as one of twenty women who are changing the sport of running and by Competitor Magazine as one of 12 Influential and inspiring runners under 30, my mission is to inspire others to get embrace a healthy lifestyle and pursue the strongest version of themselves possible.