So today during my run, I had this post all thought up in my head. I tried several times to sit down and write it, but I kept having other things to do, and I just couldn’t get it out right. As much as I want to get in bed, watch the rest of the Olympic closing ceremonies, and be a perfectionist about what I post, I’m making myself just do it… in all it’s imperfectness.
So I’m slow. I’m not even sure I deserve to call myself a runner. I sort of feel like a poser. Of course, to all my non-running friends and family, they see my jog as a run. And to this former fatty, anything beyond a walk is a run!
But I have a confession to make. I haven’t run (or done any activity, for that matter) in a whole week! It’s the first time in, well, probably 6 months that I have gone 7 days straight without doing a thing. I was sick… well, I am sick… I’m at the tail end of some sort of respiratory infection. But I could totally feel my evil lazy part of my brain starting to use it as an excuse. So I made myself run today. I mean, it was in the 70’s here in Atlanta at around 11am. How could I not take advantage of that?!?
And what ended up happening? I ended up pushing myself. I ended up running 4.5 miles. Further than I ever have before. Probably because I have rested all week, huh? I know I am going to pay for it tomorrow. In fact, I am starting to pay for it right now. I am already a bit sore. Reminds me… where’s that advil?
What’s strange about all this to me, is that 7 months ago, back when I chose to take on the Back to Basics challenge that Colleen over at Bee Fit hosted, I never would have thought I would be where I am now. Little does she know that I credit her for finally getting me on the right track with that challenge. I had lost a measly 11 lbs in 6 months at that point, and I was clearly not taking it at all seriously. Since I took on that challenge, I have been sticking to this healthy thing, and I’ve lost about 55 lbs since then.
But back then, I remember being deathly afraid that I was never going to be able to get this weight off unless I became a runner. I saw Colleen and Dani from Weight Off My Shoulders who had both been successful with WeightWatchers, as well as many other twitter friends, competing in all kinds of races… running… working out all the time! I never, ever in my life, ever wanted to be a runner. It likely stems from the fact that I could barely run as a kid. I remember being made fun of, and I dreaded that damn mile for the presidential fitness award, in which I never could run the whole thing. And in college, when I was dancing in a performance group, our director had us run one day, and I walked most of it. Not to mention, I just hated working out period. Seven months ago, I couldn’t even run 4 MPH on the treadmill for more than a minute!
And now look at me. Today, I ran for 4.5 miles straight for almost 55 minutes. No, I didn’t have to become a runner to lose all that weight. I didn’t even have to become a runner period. I suddenly just wanted to. I think it’s because I never thought I could. And well, let’s face it, for a while I couldn’t. So I run because I can. I run because it proves to me that I am capable of more than I ever thought possible. I still don’t know what I am doing. I ask for advice on twitter and I just got books about running at the library, for the love of god!
All kinds of thoughts go through my head when I run. Well, today it was this post, and mostly my little mantras “You’ve got this” and “Just keep going.” But I am so good at getting ahead of myself, and I start getting worried that I will never be able to get to 13.1 miles. Yeah seriously. I really want to complete a half marathon some day, but I haven’t even done a 5K race yet! (That will be soon, very soon, by the way!) So I have to remind myself that I don’t have to be the fastest, and I don’t have to run a marathon tomorrow! This is my show. I don’t need to compare myself to anyone else. I have to remember that I have literally gone from 1 minute to 55 minutes of running in about 6 months. 13.1 miles may seem impossible right now, but so did 4.5 miles back then. I just have to keep saying to myself that other little saying that I think about on my runs….
For a girl who never wanted to run, for being the girl who couldn’t finish the mile in high school, for the girl who hated working out period, for the girl who hated the outdoors, and for the girl who hated sweating… I amaze myself that I am actually not that girl anymore. How did that happen? I don’t know! If I knew, I would definite bottle that stuff up and sell it! The point is that it IS POSSIBLE. No matter how slow, no matter how long it takes you to get there, change is possible. I didn’t realize how much more I would learn from this journey and from running. I love it. I just love it.