Running Away

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Anytime friends talked about runners' high, I'd usually roll my eyes and think to myself "you've obviously never tried real drugs". I was wrong.

The Coronavirus quarantine adds a bit of extra time to my day, since I no longer have a commute (working from home). I'm trying to use this time wisely, so I've been doing things I'd been neglecting previously - exercising, reading fiction, learning new career skills.

For exercise, I chose to try the Couch to 5K program for the third time. It's a nine-week program - my first attempt lasted four weeks, my second attempt only one or two. I'm currently five and a half weeks into the program, and I'm shocked to say that I'm really enjoying it this time around.

The runner’s high is part of it. As the runs have gotten longer, I certainly experience a decent amount of euphoria at the end of training sessions. After each run, I return home, drink water, and go for a shower. I turn on some music and take a speaker to the bathroom, and the shower is one of extreme contentment.

The other great part of all this is the sense of accomplishment after each run. I’m a lazy person. I eat, well, whatever. Prior to quarantine, I smoked half a pack to a pack of cigarettes a day. But I decided to do this running thing.

I’ve stuck with it so far, and each week, runs become easier. While the runner’s high and contentment are qualitative things, the increasing distances and my increasing speed are quantitative proof that I’m getting better at this.

Life consists of three parts: health, wealth, and the pursuit of happiness. Right now, that means I need to improve my long-neglected health, grow wealth, and figure out what in the heck makes me happy so that I can pursue it.

Eight months ago, I got a day-job at a digital marketing firm in New Orleans, and that’s allowed me to grow wealth after seven years of living paycheck to paycheck while being self-employed. But I had not made strides in improving my health and figuring out happiness. I’m happy to say that’s no longer the case.