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October 08, 2019

Running Values

By: Beth Baker

A few weeks ago, I got to go to the innards of Pennsylvania, and land at an old school kid styled summer camp. This is the spot where I spent the next 3 days with 350 other runners who were there for Oiselle’s Big BirdCamp. It had everything that you could imagine a running summer camp having; a lake, bunk beds, dining hall, tree houses, and acres beyond acres of green rolling trails. This was my second year here, and I hope to go back next year. 

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Among all these women were older runners, fast runners, trail runners, fast trail runners, chatty runners, solo runners, rounder runners, and short runners. So, all the runners. 

As I watched all of these women cruise around the grounds, I remembered an exercise I had done a few months ago reading Brene Brown’s ‘Dare To Lead’. The exercise is a huge list of values, and you have to pick 2-3 that you hold in your hand and define who you are. The thing is that all the values are equally valid, and that one is no better than the other. My values are not better than yours, and if we all had the same ones in our hand, our world would be pretty boring. I strongly believe that we fall into a heap of problems arguing and judging each other for having a different system of values. I am sure you can think of some examples in today’s landscape. 

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This whole idea was the spark of my creative project, Why We Run, to show people that we do this thing for different reasons and having respect for why you run, and equally have respect why she does it, and why they run. Being envious and comparative sucks out all of the respect, and defeats the joy of it all. 

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I am sure there are a ton more, but here are some running values that I have heard over the last 13 years. Pick a couple that might sing to you, and of course, these are fluid and might change in different parts of your life.  

Being in Nature
Community
One on One Time
Competition
Mental Health
Physical Health
Alone time
Adventure
Self Achievement
Growth

If you can’t find one, here are some starter questions to help you uncover your reasons. 
 
What do you want out of running?
What part of running do you enjoy?
What is your ideal running scenario?

One of the reasons I love running (and it took me years to find) is music. Running with music makes me feel like I can change the world and take all y’all with me. It’s literally my jam. I hope you find yours, cause it’s awesome. 

Go get it!

Coach Beth

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