Striving Towards the Ideal Body — Part III
At this point I considered myself healthy and fit. I could run a 5K with ease. I could do cheated one handed push-ups. I knew I would keep running/sprinting along with body-weight movements. However, I was going to encounter a hurdle pretty soon.
During an internship, I started playing Badminton. Pretty soon I became very good at it. At the same time I didn’t stop running and body-weight movements. I’d wake up every morning and do sprint-jogs on the road in front of the house. For some reason, my knees started hurting from all the sprinting. Apparently the tarmac wasn’t very friendly to them and I didn’t have great running shoes either. I tried running on the grass for a little bit; but the pain refused to go away.
The doctor I saw, told me to lay off running completely. I was confused and sad at the same time. I didn’t know anything else about fitness. My father had been a great long distance runner but my knees had betrayed me in the prime of my youth.
I smile when I think back to those times. The fact is that I hate running and would avoid it like the plague if I could. It doesn’t do anything for me. A lot of things changed since then and running just lost its place in my routine. I have however, had a love-hate relationship with running ever since.
It is not that I completely lay off running after that. I played soccer (football) which involves a lot of running and sprinting as well. However, my knees didn’t give me too many issues while playing soccer. I guess the euphoria of playing a sport as exhilarating as football, numbed the pain of the knees.
For a brief period of time I also became part of a running group which used to train for half marathons and marathons. I remember running with them occasionally for distances up to 6 miles. This was low intensity running though and was not as taxing as sprinting.
At one point I grew so distant from running that my headliner was — “I only run to catch the bus.” I remember one of my colleagues nodding their head in agreement when I said that.
I know running can be an important part of a fitness routine. However, since my episode with the knees, I have never really included running as a staple in my fitness. I probably won’t ever go back to running full time even though my father says I would be a terrific distance runner. If I could, I’d run 100m. I think I am pretty quick. I think I have replaced running with walking. Now I mostly walk at work to fulfill my aerobic cardio requirements. Even today I have decent lung capacity by standards of a non-runner and I don’t envy the pains that runners have to endure.
Read part IV to this story here.