Running Isn’t Everything

Running Isn't Everything

This week, my “on this day app” showed me nine years ago, I had my official diagnosis of a tibia stress fracture. I got the fracture several weeks earlier but had no idea, and it was misdiagnosed as tendinitis. I limped for several weeks until finally having an answer.

Running Isn't Everything

I was young (freshly 21) and it was my first real running injury.

What took so long? Stress fractures rarely show up on early x-Rays. I haven’t had a stress fracture that did show up within the first weeks of the break…I like to say “x-rays are the gateway to MRIs.”

I know exactly what caused my tibia to break. It was by running my runs to fast all of the time. I ran between 7-7:10 pace every day. You can read about my running history, so I’ll spare you all of those details.

In summary, at the time my PRS were much slower. I was always tired, and my training was dumb. It wasn’t sustainable. I was a new runner and didn’t know the importance of easy runs.

Most runners go through the phase of running in cheap shoes, running all their runs too fast, and then get injured.  Learn and realize you don’t need to run fast all of the time.

This post isn’t completely about breaking my tibia, though.

On that day, 9 years ago, I sat in the doctor’s office, crying my eyes out as they read the results. My dad was sitting there, rolling his eyes.

He looked me square in my 21-year-old face and said: “Hollie, it’s just running, get ahold of yourself.”

I’ve asked him if he remembers that, and he doesn’t. I’ll never forget that statement because at the end of the day it is…just running.

Races, events, and running will always be there.  We might not have “true racing” now, but races will come back and when they do, we will be safer.

With any hobby, it’s important to have other things to fall back on. That’s why we see so many professional and elite runners having “something else.”

Aliphine T makes beanies...

Des Linden brews coffee

They all have something, so if running isn’t going well or they are injured, they can do something else.

I’m not saying don’t care about running or don’t set big goals, but I am saying it’s important to have other things in your life. No hobby should take up 100%.

For me, some of my hobbies include going to diners, hiking, and private aviation. Not everything needs to be “productive,” either. We are allowed to do things that don’t make money but bring us enjoyment. I’ve never made any money from going to diners, but do I enjoy it? Yes.  When I first started going to diners, people said: why? Like a cliche, I said, why not? I saw more of NJ than I ever imagined by traveling around the state, meeting friends, and seeing 300+ diners.

So the point of this post is this: find a few hobbies that you enjoy. Whether that’s running, sewing, playing a musical instrument, going to diners, whatever brings you joy. That way, if you can’t do one thing, you’ll be able to have something else that brings you happiness.

For running news, you can subscribe to my once a week running newsletter. 

Questions for you:

What are some of your hobbies?

What has been your longest time away from running? 


  1. I am also one of those who tries to run fast every day and gets nervous at a slow mile showing up on the watch. Some days I have run without a watch. Speaking of playing a musical instrument, I noticed that my trumpets had not been touched in several weeks. That changed last night. Today I am taking off from running altogether. I’ve needed to do some sort of weight training to stave off the loss of muscle mass that comes with entering your mid 40s. Your fathers wise advice is good for all of us, and thank you for sharing it.

    1. Thank you for reading Christopher! I’ve been trying to get into weight training as well. So cool you play the trumpet!

  2. Thank you! I am very injured now and have been for a while. Trying to figure it all out but discovering new active hobbies like biking, kayaking and swimming. With no races I want to make sure I don’t rush my recovery. Running is not my life so I am trying to enjoy a summer without it!

    1. I know the feeling Tara and I’m glad you can find other hobbies. I feel like during a typical summer, we are often busier anyway so enjoying a summer without running is easier. I’ve always wanted to get into kayaking myself.

  3. I like working around my house and fixing healthy meals. I enjoy taking photos of plants and insects in my yard.
    I ran my last race on March 8th. This is the longest that I’ve gone without racing since 1998. I only do real races.

    1. It’s funny, some people love virtual races, others hate them. I’ve been enjoying the challenges that have you run a certain amount of miles in a period of time! What was your last race? Do you have a favorite insect or plant?

  4. He looked me square in my 21-year-old face and said: “Hollie, it’s just running, get ahold of yourself.”

    I have a feeling your father and I would get along! 🙂 🙂 🙂

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