Despite the fact that I write generally about health, people often come up to me and say, “You’re the running writer.”
I figure it’s because many readers don’t look at regular bylines or associate the column mug with my writing, which originated as a running column from 2000 to 2006 but has since been more generally about health and fitness (including running).
The running writer characterization also may be because I’m also an avid outdoor runner and enjoy participating in local races and triathlons.
And for the past five years, I’ve written a blog, “Running Charleston,” on postandcourier.com to continue providing coverage of the ever-growing running and endurance-sports community in the metro area, though I often found it awkward to post items about swimming and biking because they didn’t fit the running category.
Over the same time period, the Charleston area has experienced a fitness renaissance, despite the fact that nationally we were making a name for our food and beverage consumption (including being named No. 4 “drunkest city” in 2012 by “The Smoking Gun” website).
Despite the national economic downturn in 2007, yoga studios started popping up, seemingly on every corner, in downtown Charleston, while CrossFit “boxes” proliferated behind the corners. Cyclists have started filling roadways and the street battles with motorists fueled a rolling debate in the local media.
Stand-up paddleboarders have become ever-present on our waterways, thanks to six-month summers. The calendar has filled up with an increasing diversity of events, from obstacle “mud” runs, CrossFit-styled challenges and mass fitness events such as this past Saturday’s “Operation: Sweat on Deck” by Lululemon aboard the aircraft carrier Yorktown.
And businesses, governments, schools and hospitals have started wellness initiatives.
Frankly, the growth of fitness in Charleston has blown me away — in a good way. Per capita, I’m not sure another town in the United States can match us. Boulder schmoulder.
But I’ve also felt some frustration along the way because there often wasn’t enough print space to make readers aware of this wealth of events and opportunities. I started posting yoga, CrossFit and even circus arts events in the column, but wondered if readers could get past the “Running Charleston” logo.
So when Executive Editor Mitch Pugh reviewed the blogs over the summer, he asked writers for ideas on changes and I was quick to respond that I wanted to increase the scope of the running blog to all fitness events.
He liked the idea and, as of last week, “Get Fit” replaced “Running Charleston” under the blog heading as “Health & Fitness,” sandwiched between the heavyweights of “Gamecock Sports” (“Spur of the Moment” by Ryan Wood) and “Lowcountry Food” (“Raskin Around” by Hanna Raskin).
For my fellow runners, don’t worry. Running will still be a big part of the blog. I won’t abandon my first love. And let’s face it, can you go outside on any day and NOT see a runner?
I hope readers who share my interest in fitness, as well as nutrition, will check in on “Get Fit” periodically, as well as share any information they need to get out to the public. The medium is quick and efficient and offers the flexibility of post-deadline updates on weekend events. I often post the blog entries on Twitter and Facebook, as well.
As readers may know, healthy living is a passion of mine. One of my life’s mottoes has always been “health trumps wealth” and I see taking care of one’s body going beyond a physical practice. It is spiritual as well.
The Bible says in 1st Corinthians 6:19-20, “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own ... Therefore honor God with your bodies.”
Sorry, this preacher’s kid paid attention and took that one to heart.
Anyway, I hope those of you who share that view, or perhaps aspire to, will check the blog out this week and in future weeks and months. And I hope it will help you to get fit and stay fit.
Reach David Quick at 937-5516 or firstname.lastname@example.org.