Good morning! Something happened yesterday while I was out for my run, and as I processed through my feelings about it, I realized I had to share it with you all. Because, after all, there is more to becoming healthy and whole than just diet and exercise.
I was running a route that was different for me and it was just about mile four. I was doing my normal intervals of one minute jogging, one minute walking. As the interval changed and I slowed from a jog to a walk, a car that was coming from behind me slowed down and several young men/older teens yelled something rude and derogatory. It's not really important what they said. What's important is what it ALMOST triggered in me.
I don't know if I've ever shared this here. I know I've shared it with my Weight Watcher meeting. When I first began to think about running, it took me about a year to actually start. I downloaded a "Couch to 5K" app on my phone about a year before I took that first tentative jog. The thing that kept me from starting was fear. Fear that was rooted in my past experiences. I was afraid, almost convinced, that I couldn't do it.
I had a mental image of an obese little girl, forced to run around a track in elementary school, while the other children who were more fit and less awkward, jeered and poked fun. Sure, there was a teacher trying to cheer me on...but hers was not the voice that stayed with me for the next 40+ years.
So fast forward to yesterday. Those jeering voices of foolish young men reached my ears and for a moment I was jerked back to that painful place. That place of not feeling good enough, or fit enough, or slim enough, or pretty enough....for a moment I went there.
But then something happened. Suddenly a voice from my heart cried out, "No!! You are not that girl anymore!! And it's not because she ceased to exist. It's because she found her STRONG!!!
I don't know if I can adequately put it into words. But, part of becoming healthy is finding your strong. Running has helped me to do that. It has changed my life. I will never again be that frightened, hurting kid who was afraid to run because she might not be able to do it, or because she was afraid of what others might think or say.
I am a 55 year old wife, mom, & grandma who can go out on a Saturday morning and decide that I'm going to interval run ten miles.....so I did. I ran from the voices in my head that tell me I can't do it. I ran until the echo of those boys' words could no longer be heard rolling around in my head. I found my strong :)