By Emily Truax, a sophomore cross-country runner from Brownsburg, Indiana, who is majoring in graphic design and marketing at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College
My name is Emily Truax, and I haven’t stopped running for a year.
I decided to challenge myself in May of 2019 by trying to run as many days in a row as I could. Looking back on past runs, my previous streak was only around 20 days. My first goal was a month, then shortly after I hit a month, it turned to two and so on. Now after a year, I couldn’t be happier and help but ask myself, “What’s next? Two years?”
The rules to a running streak are you have to run at least a mile, and you have to do it every day.
What has it been like? Through all of the crazy events that have happened in the past year like bad races, sickness, below-freezing temperatures, a 14-hour bus ride back from nationals, sore legs and now the pandemic, running has been my constant through all of it. I have noticed that once I have tied up my pavement-beaten shoes, I can let myself be free. Running is amazing because it clears my head and provides me time completely to myself. I get to make all the decisions when running – where to go, how fast and how far.
There have been several fun memories made in the past year. Like the one time my teammate, Kate White, and I decided to change our 10-mile run into a mini-marathon (13.1 miles) just so we could say we ran a mini-marathon. I appreciate my teammates being there every single track workout, because there is no way I could have pushed myself that hard alone. I also remember talking to Zoe Trausch before every track race as we tried to pep talk each other, although we were extremely nervous ourselves. This caused us to laugh hysterically at one another as we were warming up or heading to the start line. I also appreciate Breanna Barger and Kendyll Schulz for bringing tunes on our runs to make them a little less painful.
I like challenges and pushing my body to its limits, and this has definitely been a difficult one for me. With a busy lifestyle, there were several very late runs and runs that started at 4 a.m. before I had to leave for work. One thing I learned is that you can always make time for something if you are passionate enough about it. On May 13, 2020, I know that I will get to reflect on this day and understand how much my life has changed since then.
The runner and person I have become in the last year is truly astonishing, and I can thank the tedious sport of running for it all.