A lot of people have been stopping me lately and asking me where my obsession for running 5Ks suddenly came from. I have never been an athlete and I can only do Jillian Micheal workout dvds when distracted by Netflix because I find exercising incredibly boring.
Regardless, the moment for running happened like this – I was about to make a car purchase (the most expensive thing I’ve ever bought in my life) and decided to ask the dealer about this “athlete rebate program” from Subaru. “Oh, that’s for athletes!” he said dismissively, “sign your name here and the car will be yours!” “But I know friends that run!” I sputtered. The salesperson rolled his eyes, “Well, contact the website, we’re a dealer, I don’t know anyone who’s done it.”
Subaru is a brand known for encouraging drivers to become rugged wilderness adventurers and there are rebates available for athletes, ski instructors, golfers, new grads and people needing to modify cars for disabled passengers. The only category applicable to me is the athlete rebate, aka, someone willing to do either a triathlon or run two 5K races. Incidentally, I was conversing with author Vincent Ternida about this and I was the third Asian person he knew who was running for this rebate…sigh…
Regardless, I hate it when people say I can’t so something, so I ended up running two Subaru sponsored races to qualify for this rebate of $750 (though I still have to mail in forms before end of the year). My husband refused to participate, but while I do my runs, he hikes 15-20 km instead. He has been encouraging me to run every month so that he can go hiking. It’s a win-win for us I guess, to spend some time in the car before we separate to do our activities!
I thought I would hate running. Instead, I was surprised when my hoarding instincts came out after I started collecting the medals at the finishing lines. So nice and shiny! And heavy! I can’t remember the last time I got a prize for something. Probably it was a science fair ribbon in high school.
My mom is pissed at me now after I told her I registered for “The Chocolate Race” in the 5K category because at the end there is a chocolate buffet. “OK, so the first two races was for money, which I support. But why the heck are you paying to run now? Just run around the block!”
Everyone wants to exercise and get fit and live longer. But often excuses outweigh the motivation! I think the combination of getting a medal and feeling pretty good after a 5K run is doing the trick for me right now. I don’t know how long this will last, but I have committed to walking 5K with a work colleague for the Scotiabank Waterfront Marathon because they seem to have really nice medals. There’s a run at the Toronto Zoo too which sounds fun too because it’s at the zoo! A co-worker came by my desk this morning to tell me that I’ve motivated her to run again. She used to be a runner but stopped due to an injury and then it was too hard to go start again. It was very nice of her to tell me this, I never expected to inspire anyone, except for other potential Subaru owners! Another co-worker advised me that I had joined a cult and welcomed me since she was a runner as well!
I’ll never be a competitive athlete (top times are 15min for 5K runs), but for now I will run for medals and will be looking forward to the chocolate buffet at the next run! The healthcare benefits are a bonus!