Joy I hear you say; how can this be enjoyable? You managed Wk1's first run last night and it nearly killed you; your face was redder than a beetroot, your shins hurt, your legs were like lead and you thought your lungs were about to explode. You haven't been able to walk properly all day and goodness knows when you'll be able to manage the second run because your legs feel so painful. This was me last year and I thought then, surely people don't actually do this for the joy of it!!
Yes, well, they do. I do! Other runners on this forum do!! If you are the proverbial couch potato, or even if you're not quite welded to the sofa but don't do a whole lot of exercise bar a nice wee walk occasionally, then it won't be in your first few weeks, it probably won't even be
in your first few months, but one day, as long as you're not expecting miracles of speed and an ultra runner's endurance, you will start to find joy in your running.
There is no getting away from it, running is HARD. There is practically no other sport that burns so much energy, minute for minute. You think this will never bring you joy, but it will happen one day....
That longed for, but seemingly impossible day, when you are not trying to beat your last time by running too hard, when you're not worrying about how you look, when you're comfortable in your skin and have no expectations, suddenly you will hit "that pace", the one that is still a good time for you, but seems easier than you've ever felt it, and your form is good, you're not labouring hard to breathe and the road rises up to meet your eager foot. Your legs feel stronger than ever, the cool wind is in your face and you come flying along, wondering why you ever thought this was hard. Other people that you overtake or pass, non-runners, look at you, but you don't feel self conscious because now you are a "proper runner". When you pass other runners you get a wry smile from them, or a wave. You are all in "the club of athletes" no matter how slow or fast. You make the effort to get out there, no matter what.
I still count myself a beginner. I only started running last September, but it's only in the last few weeks as I've gone regularly over the hour mark in my running, that I've begun to really enjoy myself. Yes, I've had the odd really good run in that time, but those good runs are becoming much more the norm than bad ones. Even on days when I think I don't want to go out, am tired, am achy, am thinking it's raining/freezing/icy/blowing a gale, I really don't fancy this, and yes, for the first five minutes I'm thinking what a stupid activity, that I must be loopy to want to do this: but give me just five minutes more and I'm there, I'm "into" it, I've reached my running pace and breathing rhythm, have settled into myself and am running for the sheer bloody joy of it.
If you took this away from me now, there would be other aerobic sports I could do; I love to swim, cycle, power walk, and the rowing machine in the gym will always get a good sweat going, but for sheer "you can't catch me" joy, please let me get out of my front door with my running shoes on!