I realize how often I've held onto pains that other people inflicted on me for days, weeks, even years. It was partly because I did not know any other way, and partly because I felt justified in my anger. But it was also because forgiveness does not always come as easily as it did in this one instance.
It's important to establish an exercise regimen because physical activity offers many health benefits, including decreasing blood pressure, increasing muscle strength, lowering blood fat levels (cholesterol and triglycerides), improving sleep, decreasing stress, increasing insulin sensitivity and helping control body weight.
Running is where I feel God because running is where I find myself. It is also where I break down and can't go any farther and need help most desperately. It's where I focus on my own body and the reality of mortality, that I'm going to live in this world for a little while, and if I want to really live, I'm going to take risks and sometimes fail.
These triathletes leaving me in their dust knew where I was coming from; they had all had a first race, too. By the time I got to the running portion -- finally, something I'm good at, I thought to myself -- I had to pay that encouragement forward and did my best to cheer along the runners who needed a lift.
Runners have a contagious energy, an unusually positive outlook on life, and let's face it -- they look good in their spandex shorts. But, according to dentists and health professionals, runners and other endurance athletes are more prone to tooth decay and dental problems than the rest of the population.