I’m Sophia Short – I work as a social media strategist during the day and write and teach yoga on the side.
I started running at a pretty early age – I’m about a year younger than my older brother and he took an interest in running in elementary school so of course I followed suit. Throughout high school, I ran on my school’s cross-country team (hey, it was a sport you didn’t have to try out for!) and completed a marathon my senior year of high school. When my freshman year of college hit, I had a pretty big swing of depression and as a result took a break from running for over a year (more on mental health later!). I started running consistently again when I began working full time and didn’t want to take the subway home every day from work in New York. From there, I moved to LA and the weather is pretty great to get out for runs in the mornings, so running is once again a piece of my life.
I run about three mornings a week around my neighborhood in Los Angeles (it’s horrifying I do claim to be a morning person) and take walks after work a couple of nights too in my HOKAs. I like running in particular because it can slow down my mind especially when life is busy. With so much going on just in a regular day, all of your thoughts – especially creative ones – can feel like they’re orbiting around in random directions in your brain. Going on a run forces my thoughts to line up, so they enter my mind one at a time. I also enjoy running because I can’t really look at my phone (I’ve face planted a couple of times as result from trying) and that’s pretty rare for me working and side hustling in social media.
Besides helping sort through creative ideas and settle my mind, a run does a lot to boost my mental health. As someone who has a history of anxiety and depression, having a toolkit of things that help me feel my best is important to me. Exercise is a big tool for me, and having movement be part of my morning routine helps start the day on a clearer note. If I’m feeling anxious, a repetitive activity like walking or running can help settle my mind, but if I’m feeling down, something more high intensity can help give me a jolt. I love my Clifton for runs and the Bondi for walking or a HIIT workout. I do want to note that exercise is a tool, and won’t fix everything, but it has helped for me.
Running sometimes gets the label of not being fun. Since I’m usually not running for time, something that I’ve started doing is taking photos on my run of things I find interesting. Sometimes this is the sunrise and other times it’s something quirky like a hand painted Stranger Things trashcan in the neighborhood. I think running (or walking) can give you a greater appreciation for where you live.
Sophia is featured wearing the Clifton 7.