It’s official: I’ve picked up running. Yes, after dissing the sport and its participants consistently for a solid year I’ve caught the bug.

It all started a few weeks ago when I got back from climbing Timpanogos. I was telling my roommate about it, how I blazed up and down ahead of everyone and have gotten in pretty decent shape. He basically replied: “Oh yeah? You should do the Steeplechase then!” I had to inquire about it and after about a two-minute explanation I had made up my mind. Yes, I would enter my first running race. No, I have never competed in any endurance sport, and the last time I ran was to get in shape for high school soccer.

Well, since that day I’ve been running. The first half-dozen times were pretty painful; I would run directly east up the hill to the University Hospital and back. This was only about a 3 mile loop but gained and lost about 200 feet of elevation too. Mainly, I didn’t know how to pace myself and would be panting after a mile.

The week before I hurt myself (again) I started breaking through. That week I put in 20 miles over three runs, and none of them were really that painful. I got to the point a couple times where I felt I could go forever. Unfortunately, my injury sidelined me for three weeks. Well, as of last Friday I’m back, and with a vengeance. I’ve finally started to learn how to pace myself, and it’s starting to get more fun then ever. I’ve already put in 13 miles over a couple runs, the second to the top of the Avenues gaining 900 feet. As my friend (and co-worker and triathlete) likes to say, it is ON!