I aspire!

Essay by kartenHigh School, 11th grade September 2004

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My chest heaves, beads of sweat roll off my forehead, my lungs gasp ... I love to run. Running is not so much a passion as it is a yearning. It's a painful, disgusting sport almost entirely devoid of any glory or gratification, yet peaceful and satisfying. My body aches after a good race or a long day at practice, but for some reason I can never pass up an opportunity to sprint those one hundred meters of fury I crave so much. I'm not the best runner; I'm nothing more than a mediocre, partially decorated team member, but I still love the excitement and strive to improve with every race.

The whole concept of running, which destroys me physically, for competition or recreation is illogical and uncivilized, yet my determination overpowers my sensibility. I become encompassed by sheer energy. All of my aggression and emotions are channeled into 12 hot, writhing seconds of pure animal instinct.

Sometimes I hate track and just want to stop running ... but I can't. I refuse to give up on something so important, so real. Running is my release from all the pressures and conformist ideals placed upon me. When I'm on the track, I don't have to answer questions; I don't have to live up to any scholarly expectations or be the perfect son. I concentrate everything negative into one focal point and just run ... and that is why I do it.

I joined the track team during the spring of my sophomore year. At first I was unsure about which event I would enjoy or be most successful at, but I found my niche. I run the 100 meters, the shortest and quite possibly most intense race. I have dedicated myself to improving my performance every time I step on...