I have been running (and I use the term loosely because it includes my Couch to 5 K days) for about 2 1/2 years now. I can safely say that I did not enjoy a single run my first year. I enjoyed the feeling of accomplishment, the idea of it once it was over, and maybe even the spent feeling when I was done, but I did not enjoy the run while it was in progress.
The second year brought some enjoyable runs because I felt confident enough to run outside when the weather permitted. I enjoyed the whole experience of my outdoor runs... the sun, the weather, the trees and scenery, the music, and feeling like I was part of something. I also trained for and completed a half marathon, and I felt proud. I even called myself a runner to others.
This weekend I ran about 3 1/2 miles both Saturday and Sunday. Regular old runs on the track at my gym, same old music that I have been listening to for weeks. But the thing is that I enjoyed THE RUN ITSELF. I pushed myself, I got lost in my movement, and I felt good WHILE running. It was a different experience for me. I looked forward to getting on the track, felt happy while I was running, and felt peaceful afterward. Did it take me 2 1/2 years to enjoy the run itself? Or do we just move through different levels of enjoyment the longer that we run?
I don't know the answer, but I do know that I hope it continues to feel like this!