Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Regrets? I've had a few...

It has been entirely too long since my last post and for that I apologize! Life is quite hectic at the moment with 90% of my energy being devoted to some upcoming & very important work responsibilities. My energy levels have been rapidly depleting as I spend the majority of my waking hours studying (and far too few hours actually sleeping). In fact, I should be outside running right now but I literally can't find the energy to lift my butt off the couch. Tonight I fully intend to be asleep by 9pm in an attempt to regain some energy (and sanity).

Meanwhile, as I mentioned previously, I registered to run my very first half-marathon (coming this fall). When I visited the race website for details I noticed that there was a training page with a link to a local group utilizing Jeff Galloway's training program. I read the details, emailed the program director and made note to attend the upcoming informational meeting. Then I promptly forgot about everything. Oops. A couple of days before the meeting, I received a reminder email and rearranged plans so that I could attend. I knew that Jeff Galloway himself would be speaking at the meeting and was quite excited to hear what he had to say. He did not disappoint!

While some of the things he recommended concern me (drink less water during runs, no stretching), I am very much on board with his run-walk-run method. This is essentially what I do every time I run and it has been beneficial in increasing my distance and endurance thus far. One of the very first things Jeff said was that by committing to a race and to the program, we were effectively changing our lives. This rings incredibly true to me, as I still have a hard time believing that I am a runner. I remember a few years ago, my brother asked me to join him for a run. "I don't run unless I'm being chased" I responded. To which he replied, "OK so I'll chase you..." Suffice it to say, his proposition fell on deaf ears and it would be several years before I ever put one foot in front of the other and "pounded the pavement".

In high school and junior high, we were always required to participate in the dreaded mile run. I, being the non-runner that I was, would always manage to have an excuse for not running. I was sick, I forgot my gym clothes/sneakers at home, the sky was blue... you name it, I used it. The one time I remember being forced to participate, I defiantly walked the entire mile and effectively pissed off my entire gym class. The thing is, I didn't magically begin running overnight. It took some physical strength, sure but what really solidified my love of this sport was a major change of attitude. 

I can't even tell you how many times in my life I have passed up an opportunity because I was afraid I would fail or better yet, would look stupid in front of people. One memory of "high-school me" that stands out was the day I decided to be more active and take a walk around the neighborhood. I was overweight and shy and it took a lot of courage for me to put my fears aside and take that walk. At some point during my journey a car full of boys passed by and shouted mean, high-school boy things at my chubby-framed self. It hurt but I was used to it. What crushed me though was the boy who threw a half-empty soda can at me as if we both belonged there, just another piece of trash on the side of the road. It bounced off of my chest and landed at my feet and with it there on the road, fell my self-esteem. I don't remember going for many more walks after that.

It kills me that I relinquished the power I had over myself to some punk ass kids who I would never see again. I went home and ate myself sick, donning my cloak of fat-invisibility.The older I get, the more I regret letting the opinions of others prevent me from trying something I just might enjoy. In fact, the motto of my early (ahem, very early) thirties has become "kiss my ass". I use that perhaps a little too much, but it works for me. I have spent far too many years living for everyone but myself and I am taking back control of my life.

There are so many instances I can recall where I've said "I can't do that right now because I'm fat but one day, I would like to try it." Folks, let me tell you that is bullshit. You can do and be whatever and whoever you want to be in this very moment. Don't punish yourself or put the good stuff on hold because you're not a perfect version of yourself. None of us are, that is the beauty of our existence. Every one of us is a work in progress and without that progress to look forward to, we would have no purpose! Take a good look at who you are, where you came from and where you want to go, and begin the journey. You just might like where you end up.

1 comment:

  1. You, my dear, ARE a runner! If you run, then you are a runner. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise (including yourself)!
    I look forward to reading about your progress in the coming months. You are going to do GREAT! :D