Today’s blog post has to do with one of my obsessions that I blog frequently about (social media, of course) and one that is not often mentioned on The Social Sonic Traveler: running. My loving sister just informed me this morning that the folks at the Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run, which is run every April in Washington DC in support of the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, were looking for two runners that they are calling “Social Runners.” Here is the call-to-action advertisement:
Image via Wikipedia
“We’re looking for two runners from anywhere in the United States to be our first “Credit Union Cherry Blossom Social Runners.” These individuals will be telling the world all about their experiences with the race on Facebook and Twitter. Interested?”
HECK YES I AM! As many of you may know, my social media feed is typically a bit busy, and I often am sharing my running and work-out routines with you all, regardless if you actually want to hear about it or not. Regardless, I did want to share my personal entry to this contest, as it sheds a bit of light on a very difficult time that I went through this summer. So here goes…
My two biggest passions in life- besides hotels, that is: call me a quirky fool, but I have an un-dying love affair with the travel and hospitality industries and everything they represent – are social media and running. While this may sound like a far-from-original, hopelessly cliched response to the question “Why should you be our “Social Media Runner?” please allow me to make my case.
This past summer, while I was working for a luxury resort hotel in Bermuda as their Social Media & E-Commerce Manager (yes, that was my job!) I was dealing with a fairly serious case of depression and a mild form of what has recently been diagnosed as bipolar spectrum disorder. Scarily, I didn’t know what was happening to me, and while I was still struggling mightily to stay on top of my social media job responsibilities, I felt this tremendously pervasive, all-consuming sense of sadness many times during the day.
Since these ominous days that I experienced have largely passed, due to a healthy treatment plan put in place by my doctor and endless amounts of family support, I’ve had a lot of time to reflect on what I consider to be the most challenging period of my twenty-four years. In addition to the boundless family and professional that I received, I truly believe that my passion for running and daily exercise got me through these tough times. Even on my worst days – when I was binge eating and wallowing in self-pity on the sofa – running was a release that truly made me euphoric, even if it was for only the fleeting, in-the-moment times.
Image by M.V. Jantzen via Flickr
I began running regularly as a freshman in college as a way to replace the competitive tennis that I once played in high school, but could no longer due so on a regular-basis in college. Since then, I have been utterly hooked on running, participating in several shorter distance races, completing several half-marathon rogue runs and – my personal best – jogging an eighteen-mile distance stretch across the island of Bermuda when I was living there. My friends have come to know me as the “ridiculous runner” as I will, more often than not, eagerly share my personal bests on Facebook and Twitter with a frequency that teeters on the verge of annoyance (according to my friends, I am a bit of an over-sharer; their opinion, not my own). I also am a huge brand evangelist of the RunKeeper and iMapMyRUN applications, which I use with vigorous frequency now that I have become physically attached to my new iPhone and, once again, have enabled my overshare social media addictions.
In summary, I am the perfect “Social Media Runner” because my personal passions result in an amalgamation that has made me, quite literally, a social media runner. Regardless of whether or not I am selected, I know that both of these passions couple together will remain an integral part of my life and will help me to remain a balanced, healthy and centered individual.