Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Life is too short

I stumbled across this on the Facebook page of The Prairie Homestead, and it rang particularly true this morning. I was thinking something pretty similar as I struggled to run fifteen feet farther than yesterday.

How many times do we sit back and lament, waiting for a change; but unwilling to take the necessary steps to make it happen? I know I do it, and I'm sure you do too. I think everyone does in some aspect of their life, whether it is personal or professional: wanting a different kind of love, a different kind of life, or even in my particular early morning experience a different kind of body.

Yeah, how sad is it that for me, it was easier to overhaul my personal relationships and my career than it is to convince myself that I CAN run.

I have never been athletic. I have never thought that I could be athletic. In my brain I have always perceived the girls that ran (or exercised for that matter) for fun as "insane," "crazy," and maybe even "narcissistic." Never have I identified with them. I made up words and descriptions to make it less appealing, to make me feel superior, to validate my never running a consecutive mile in my whole life. To make excuses for not even trying.

I saw images of runners, with their long lean frames and stared at my frumpy self in the mirror chanting: "That can never be me. I don't look like that. Look at my belly, butt, and thighs. The damned things practically bounce off when I jog ten feet. I could never run. I can't do that."

And I never even tried...

Until a month ago.

You may recall a few weeks ago I referenced a conversation that drunk me had with Captain America where I told him my *actual* weight loss goals, and I ended the post with something about lacing up running shoes. Yes. Running shoes. It was a big step. It meant changing everything that I had ingrained in my own head about who I was. Sad as I am to admit it, not running DEFINED me and I didn't even know it until I made a haphazard blog post.

I started running that next morning. I drug myself up an extra hour early and headed out the door. I made it about forty feet before I was heaving and my sight was blurry. I walked the rest of the mile. The next day I made it fifty before I started walking. Susan, my dog with a horrible deviated septum, kept me company. Somehow running next to her as she wheezed like a creeper peeping into a woman's window helped. If she could do it, I could; I can.

The same things kept playing over in my head, day after day. This wasn't me! I didn't run! What was I doing? Who was I kidding? I couldn't do this. I should just go back to bed.

At the end of week two, and a quarter mile of consecutive run time, I actually stopped being wrapped up in my thoughts long enough to realize what my ego was saying to me. I started to argue back. Why couldn't it be me? Why couldn't I be a runner, or fit, or pretty? Why did I have to stay in the comfortable little scholar bowl mold that I had made myself in high school? That wasn't me. I wasn't that limited. I am not that limited. I can be anything. Hell, I already am more than that. Why not add runner to the damned list? Why not?!

Yes. I got pissed off at my own ego tamping me down. And you know what? It felt good.

We all have something that holds us back. Maybe yours isn't changing a deeply held belief about yourself, maybe it is wanting a new type of love, a satisfying career, a new lifestyle, or anything else under the sun; but don't give up on yourself. Don't let that damned voice in your head win. Get pissed. Trust me, you owe it to yourself.

Go out there and get that something you've never had. It feels good to change it up. 

Just not always at six-thirty in the morning after running 3/4 of a mile. That still sucks sometimes. But at seven? Man, it feels great. ;)

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