DEV Community

Cover image for Fellow runner devs out there? Would love to know what made you choose running
Preslav Rachev
Preslav Rachev

Posted on

Fellow runner devs out there? Would love to know what made you choose running

As posted on my blog, I have recently reached my longest running distance (23.1 km) without a single stop. For someone who had not done a single sport in his life up until two years ago, I find this quite remarkable.

I decided to use to opportunity, to look for other fellow runners among this wonderful community, as well as for what got them into the sport.

Personally, I discovered running in my late 20s, after about about a couple of years of questioning my goals in life, my career, my personal life, etc. Running came out of nowhere - nobody made me do it. I just felt the need to move. Step by step, I made my first couple of hundred meters, all sweaty, hating myself for trying something so excruciating. I was ready to quit, but I kept on. And I am glad that I did. Running became my friend, my therapy, my meditation, my way of reading and learning (audiobooks and podcasts). With time, distances increased with less effort on my side, but besides, I saw significant transformations in both my body and moreover, my mind.

Now, two years later, I am moving forward not to a small part because of running, and I wanted to tribute this post to this most natural and enjoying way of becoming both physically and mentally strong. As developers, we need this more than ever.

I am passing the mic on to you, fellow runners. I would love to know what got you into the sport, and how you keep up.

Top comments (14)

carlymho profile image
Carly Ho 🌈
  1. My parents made me pick a sport in 5th grade because I wanted to spend all my time indoors reading books or on the computer, and I wasn't allowed to do volleyball until 6th grade
  2. The cross-country coach for 7th-12th grades ended up being my favorite teacher on account of he was also the math teacher, a big nerd, and facilitated the independent study programming classes, and he generally looked out for me at school
  3. It was the first thing I was actively bad at that I had to learn to work hard at to become kind of good atβ€”eventually I got three varsity letters and two years of captaincy

I keep getting out of shape and getting back into shape and getting out of shape due to time, health stuff, etc, but now that the weather's warming up I'm excited to get myself back on the wagon!

paulojf profile image
Paulo Fernandes

Started running last year when I turned 40... first run was pitifull... 3,5Km, half that walking and I thought I was going to die...forward 1 year and now I'm training for my first marathon in November I'm averaging 25km a week and gaining, never been so fit in my entire life :)

I found out that it keeps me sane and acts like an escape from the stress of work (I also teach in a art school, HTML/CSS/Javascript to designers can be challenging)

preslavrachev profile image
Preslav Rachev • Edited

I can imagine that the start of running was just as hurting as mine. Glad that you decided to keep on and I will have my fingers crossed for your first marathon. I am a bit concerned about running the whole distance myself, but I think this is only a matter of time.

As for becoming fitter than ever, I can totally relate. I lost around 15 kilos in the process (2 yrs ongoing), and gained muscle strength, I would have otherwise not been able to, just typing on the keyboard.

So yeah, the initial struggle totally pays off!

lexlohr profile image
Alex Lohr

When I was your age, I used to be a runner, too, even doing marathons and participating in 24-hour-relay-races.

20 years later, I'm a father, so my time after work only allows one sport. Cycling has the added advantage of also being fast enough to allow me to exercise on my daily commute (17 km twice a day in < 35 minutes, in rush hour, a car will take ~45 minutes).

Also, I get the best ideas when cycling.

aidanharding profile image
Aidan Harding

I got into running when work and family meant my time for exercise was being squeezed pretty hard. It seemed like the cheapest and most time-efficient way to leave the keyboard behind, and get some endorphins going.

It took me a while before I started going to a running club, but that has turned out to be a great thing. They cover all ranges of abilities and they give you the motivation to go out even when you've got no motivation to get out the door. And then, 5 minutes in, all the brain-hurt melts away. Admittedly, that's sometimes just to be replaced by body-hurt, but that's OK :)

So, now, a sport which seemed to be about very little other than putting one foot in front of another, is about friends, nature, my dog, beer, cake, and getting the heck out of the house e.g.

Running in Devon, UK

preslavrachev profile image
Preslav Rachev

Another ex-smoker here πŸ‘‹πŸΌ I think I've never been really addicted to nicotine, but I picked up cigarette smoking in my late teens. Years later, I still fought to get out of the habit of smoking on certain occasions (parties, mostly), or when under stress, when others around were smoking, etc.

That, until mid-2016. I told myself I should cut the crap and A) either accept that I am a smoker and stop pretending, or B) cut cigarette smoking once and for all (yes, including the occasional cigarette to go along with the party drink).

I am glad that I chose the latter, and running has been a huge motivation and a helper.

ameliagapin profile image
Amelia Gapin

I’ve been running for about ten years now and just ran my 15th marathon. Without running in my life, Intruly think I’d be dead. It’s my stress reliever and escape from everything else. I can just go out and be free.

cwrahien profile image

Took up running after a sudden and jarring realisation of how sedentary a web development job can be, an actual moment of "penny drop" when I came to clearly see just how out of shape and unhealthy I had become.

Took up the Couch to 5KM programme as a 'Beginners Guide to Running' and hated every sweat-drenched moment until one day the magic of running just 'clicked' and I found my zen-like peace. That tranquillity has continued and now I run four times a week at around 18-25 miles per week, I've completed one half marathon and currently training for my second.

Running has become my away-from-the-world time where I can relax, get some processing time in, and come back to my work, home or personal life with a fresh mindset ready to tackle whatever problems have arisen.

ameliagapin profile image
Amelia Gapin

So much that last paragraph

jluisestrada profile image
JLuis Estrada

Stress relief. Running really helped as a way to release the stress and anxiety. Started several years ago and now Im a marathoner. Btw, get rid of the earphones while running, is bad for you cadence, your breathing and your interaction with the environment

ben profile image
Ben Halpern

Exercise in general is so key to having our brains work well, and running is the perfect escape from the code. I ran track when I was younger and want to get back into it.

iwilsonq profile image
Ian Wilson

In elementary school being the fastest kid on the block gave you street cred so I ran. I joined cross country and track in middle school and kept going, but I was never even the fastest on my team. I tried pretty hard though, 12 years later I'm still doing it and running big races a couple times per year.

I like to run in general - it gets me pretty fired up. Signing up for a race and then training like a madman for 4-5 months and SEEING the results when the time comes is one of the most fulfilling things. It keeps be grounded through all this technology stuff.

ialexs profile image
ilya alexander s.

If you're not in your 'prime' (late teen/early 20s), and don't have any plan to switch career to make a living by doing sport..'s one motivation: do it for fun and do it for your love one (parents/spouse/kid/etc).

Healthy benefit is just a bonus (an absolute bonus)

Keep it up.. \m/

honzasterba_53 profile image
Honza Sterba

Started running couple of years back because I have gained weight, needed a regular excercise and I also wanted to do something with our dog, who has a lot of energy she needs to get out.
Now I am running ultra-marathons and running is a big part of my life. I run through forrests and across hill, never listen to music or even audio books. Running is an activity I like to be 100% immersed in.