What am I scared of? Well, anyone who reads this page regularly knows I’d rather take a cheese grater to my eyeballs than fly. Cockroaches generally send me screaming. And I have such a fear of needles that even typing the word sort of makes me want to vom. But my most secret nemesis? That would be running.
I know, weird. It’s a little bit like saying you’re scared of breathing. Running is just one foot in front of the other, right? Except there’s one small problem—I can’t do it. Or at least I thought I couldn’t.
When a car accident rearranged my face at 16, it also did a number on my ability to orient and balance myself. Going down stairs is a huge challenge for me. If I don’t hold onto the railing, there’s a good chance I’ll end up in a small heap at the bottom. Even worse? Down escalators. Forget amusement parks—just take me to a mall for a scary ride.
Running always gave me that same out-of-control feeling. After a few steps, I’d be milliseconds away from a face plant. So, long story long, running and I have avoided each other for quite a while.
Things changed a couple months ago, when my BGF—a total gym god with the body and face to match—invited me to work out with him. No prob. I can lift weights for a freakishly long time without getting tired or losing strength. But when it got around to the cardio part, I instantly opted out. But then I thought about it: I had taught myself to ski again. Maybe I could teach myself to run?
At first, it wasn’t pretty. I could barely even walk fast without feeling like I was going to go flailing off the end of the treadmill. But I worked at it. And after three months, I was up to one minute of running, four of walking. Then one more and one more. Soon, I’d run for a whole song (Katy Perry doesn’t know it, but she’s my gym BFF), and at faster and faster speeds. One song became two songs and two songs, three. Before I knew it, I could run for 30 minutes.
So now, every day, I run a race with myself. It actually doesn’t matter to me how many songs I get through or how many miles I manage. The only thing I care about is silencing that voice inside my head that always told me I couldn’t do this…and that part of me that believed it. So long, secret fear of sneakers: Baby, I was born to run. xo KB
The GL crew spills the hilarious horrors that freak them out! Check ‘em out below.
“Pomegranates. Does anyone else group them in with beehives, brain guts or something equally nauseating that you wouldn’t ever touch, let alone eat? Sorry, pom fans.” —Jiae
“When people touch my hair. The thought of their filthy hands on my clean tresses gives me chills.” —Keri
“Hearing a plastic knife against Styrofoam is like nails on a chalkboard for me.” —Katie P.
“When scallions, parsley or any other little green garnish is on my food. I don’t care if my meal gets cold, I’ll sit there and pick every teensy bit of it out.” —Trish
“Crowds make me crazy. People don’t even have to be pushing or shoving, but just standing super-close to a ton of strangers makes my skin crawl. It’s funny, because I live in New York City, so I deal with massive amounts of people all the time.” —Katie A.
“Athletic sandals. Shudder. Let’s be honest: Only a very small portion of the population needs to be prepared for a 10-mile trek across land and water at the drop of a hat. I’m guessing this isn’t you, guy at the mall. So please try to resist wearing them in public. For my sake.” —Jess
“The sound of people brushing their teeth. I have to leave the room.” —Brooke