I've started running. Never in my life would I think those words would come ever. I always admired people who could run long distances and who enjoyed running, but I have never understood it. Honestly, I haven't made it to the point where I understand people who really love running. (maybe I'll get there someday? Although I'm three months in and have yet to experience this so-called "runners high" people talk about it...I'll believe it when I feel it myself). Thanks to my wonderful friend Jessica, who if it wasn't for her I wouldn't even be writing this because I would of quit when the Couch 2 5K training said run for 8 minutes straight (my response when I heard that = I'm sorry, what did you just say?), who encourages me when I say I'm going to quit, who made me realize it's not okay just to quit something because you're not  good at it and who accepts me and all my complaining each morning, we now successfully run about 3 miles a few times every week. Anyway...because I needed a break from homework, because I like lists and because I was thinking about running randomly and how I have to wake up here soon to do just that here is my Top Ten Random Running List of Thoughts/Experiences/Ideas/etc...

1. I am learning how much running is a mental thing. I used to wake up so anxious about the day's run because I didn't think I could do it and I'm learning how to work through my anxiety when it comes to running. Also, the things that go on in my head while I'm running from my self pep talks, to my observations of the neighborhood, to my random thoughts could probably be turned into a sitcom that would either be highly entertaining or make you slightly worry about my mental state.

2. There are a lot of hills in Nashville. When you're just driving around you may disagree, but run that same route and then we can talk about if Nashville is hilly or not.

3. I would like to publicly thank the Beyonce Pandora station as well as the Justin Timberlake Pandora station for being my ever encouraging companions on these endeavors.

4. Running is hard. I thought it would get easier and I guess it has, but it's still hard. Some runs are easier than others, some days just suck and I say I'm never doing it again, other days I think it's not too bad. Kinda like life...oh, you don't even want to know how many parallels between running and life go through my head every morning, I could basically start my own blog about those.

5. Running gives you a common bond with other people who run. It's like you're now in a secret society. One day I had a whole conversation with my friend about running and after it was over I thought, "Who am I and since when could I hold my own in a conversation about running?". I always felt like part of the out group when I was around runners and even though I run now, I'm pretty sure I haven't quite made it into the 'in group". (I think you have to experience and probably document via social media that runner's high you get to be in that group or actually complete a race)

6. My favorite thing on runs is when we pass by random people who encourage us. One guy told us next year we would be running the NYC marathon...not gonna happen sir, but we really appreciate the encouragement.

7. We had to invest in pepper spray...not because of people, but because of stray dogs.

8. The city graveyard is a really pretty and peaceful place to run. (Thank you Brian and Courtney for this insight)

9. I am signed up to run two 5K's next week...the first 5K's in my life I will have run the whole thing and first 5K's since i've started training. I didn't realize they are in the same week until about 5 minutes ago. Well...go big or go home, right? (maybe this means I'm that much closer to being in the "in group" of running...OMG!!)

10. I am proud of myself. I think I can say that without coming across as too proud or full of myself. It's exciting to be able to say you've done something you never thought you would or even were capable of doing. I may question that capability each time I put on those running shoes, but I've done it and I'm doing it and as ugly or slow as some of those runs can be, I do it and that's what I focus on.

(disclaimer: please don't compare this to one of those people you dread seeing on social media who are always commenting on how great their workout was or who is always checked into the gym or someone who is seeking a pat on the back for the fact that they're actually working out. 1. I would never comment about how great a workout is, because let's be real, workouts aren't that great. 2. I don't have a gym to check into. 3. I mean, feel free to pat me on the back if you want.)