This is the story about the girl who did.
I ran 5km.
I ran at 10kph.
All of these things seem incidental don't they. You're probably wondering what I'm on about. Maybe you think I've finally had too much sun to the head? (and that really is quite possible).
What if I told you that 2 years ago I couldn't run for 60 seconds?
What if I told you that up until 6 months ago I "couldn't" push past 6kph?
What if I told you that 3 years ago I had holed myself up in my house and didn't leave it for 6 months? That I despised my 200Ib (14st3Ib.) 5'5" body and wished that I'd never been given the privilege of life.
What's my point? Sometimes it's easy to look at what you have an forget what you had.
Yeah, I know, I'm a laugh a minute tonight right. But I've promised you a story and I'll give you it.
I realised today that very few people know the journey that this body has been through. My pals at MFP met me when I was a *reasonable* 172Ib (12st2Ibs) and in recovery from a very serious bout of depressive disorder. You can see some of it in previous blog posts (specifically the c25K series) but I've never really told it all.
Why am I telling you this? Why would I want to admit it?
Firstly, I don't see the shame in discussing these things. A colleague a little while ago looked shocked that I discussed my period of deep depression with my students and inferred that it was unprofessional. Being that I teach Psychology I feel that it's extremely professional. We're all quick to make judgements. When I talk to my students of my past they're always shocked. You were fat? You were depressed? No. You're not that now though!
No, I'm not. I'm also proof that you can recover. I'm proof that you can't judge a book by its cover and I'm proof that what doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
I see so many people who are truely inspirational - people who have overcome huge physical barriers to get to an elite level of physical fitness. People who are working hard to get there.
I saw a lady at the gym the other day, she was very overweight. She was sweating and puffing on the treadmill one up from me. She looked uncomfortable and refused to look up. Like she was ashamed of herself.
What she doesn't realise is that if she keeps going, if she keeps trying eventually she'll be looking at the overweight person next to her and silently egging them on wondering why they look ashamed of themselves.
Don't get me wrong, I do NOT look like a runner. I go purple for a start. I wheeze. I often trip over my own feet and I definitely am NOT graceful (I think you all know that :p). But I keep at it. And slowly, but surely I've improved.
10kph! Who'd have thunk it ;)
What made me think of this?
My sister. She told me a little while ago that she couldn't lose weight, that she didn't believe that she would be successful when we started training. She told me that I'm an inspiration to her.
The transformation is like watching a butterfly unfolding its wings for that first time. Little by little she is gaining confidence, she's losing that weight and she is getting stronger and she has started believing in HERSELF.
Two weeks ago she thought that she couldn't walk 30k. She got to 20k and thought that it was over; by pure strength of will she pushed forwards. It bought it all flooding back. The feeling of my thighs chaffing when I started running (and those god-awful basketball shorts that would ride up!). The feeling of an imminent panic attack. The feeling of shame when someone looked at my HUGE body trying to make the lap around the local playing field.
The feeling of pride when someone stopped me and told me that they thought I was amazing. The feeling of self-worth when I realised my body was becoming stronger and it was me who was making those changes. The feeling of invincibility when I realised I could train my body to do what I WANTED it to do.
The point of what I'm saying here? Never NEVER give up. Success is so much closer than you could ever imagine it to be! Don't ever say you "can't". You just mean that you won't and there IS a difference.
Who am I to be an inspiration? I'm just a girl who did.