It is acceptable to say that I am a confident person. I have been called strong-willed by multiple people, and to me, that is a HUGE compliment. It is atypical to become a strong-willed person overnight. Almost always, a strong-willed person has had to overcome a myriad of obstacles that served to mold them into a down and dirty, teeth-clenching, goal-setting maniac.
If everything in life was in our favor what a world this would be! We would never have bad mornings that created a spiraling and terrible rest of the day. My hair would always look as though I cared enough to fix it. Results from a new fitness regimen would be instantaneous; there would be no weight gain or debilitating muscle soreness and fatigue. There have been days that I have been so sore that it was excruciating to walk – these were the moments I began to wonder if I was determined or just plain crazy.
I have struggled many times during my journey to re-awaken my inner athlete. When I began “running” in May of 2012, I couldn’t run more than a couple of minutes at a time. Thank goodness for Couch to 5K on my iPhone (I highly recommend this for the beginner – I promise it works!). I have to admit that I was extremely jelly of the random “runner” on my neighborhood path. There she was, bounding along with her perfect ponytail and strong stride, leaving me in the proverbial dust.
There were days that I prayed for the strength to walk out my front door.
I kept at it. I told myself that any time I spent on the pavement was beneficial. I started to appreciate simpler things like sunny days and the smell of laundry as I passed houses in my neighborhood. As I connected with the outside world, being perfect didn’t seem that important. I ran my first 5K in July of 2012, and had a blast!
Running can provide life with a lot of perspective. Joel Osteen, a popular televangelist, has an excellent way of relating running to life. He says that while running you must focus on here and now. The past is obviously behind you, and if you look back too often you risk stumbling and scraping your knees. If you focus too far into the future, or upon how many miles you have left to go, it’s incredibly easy to become overwhelmed and tempted to give up.
So as I look forward to my longest race ever tomorrow, I must remind myself that I am prepared for here and now.
And hey, when you are running your first race of a particular distance, you’ve automatically achieved a PR.
Here’s to that finish line,