I’m a Reluctant Runner

I grew up thin… I think skinny was the term used most frequently when I was a child.  Like most women, and many men, I focussed on my perceived body-image when I was young and seemed to be frequently apologizing for my size.  Social judgement creates lots of assumptions and myths.  One assumption is that thin must equal fit.  I was, relatively, when I was young.  I was lucky, for a long time.  Then age began to hit me.

Now this is not a rant about growing older: I actually love aging.  I love the personal power I am growing into as I age.  I love the letting go of crap stuff that no longer serves me (that actually never served me, like worrying so much about what I looked like, or how I could make sure everyone liked me), I even love the wrinkles (although I’m struggling a bit with how gravity is being a bit too bossy for my liking).  What I don’t like is how my bones are not healthy.  A bone scan, whilst still in my 40s, showed Osteopenia – bone loss that can lead to Osteoporosis.  This was my wake up call.  That growing into my power piece… well now, I had to act on it.

I had to work on getting fit.  I was suddenly feeling old before my time.  I had seen too many relatives and friends struggling with pain in older age linked to decline in bone density.

The rest of my family are active.  I would choose the sofa over a run any day.  Now, there is still a vocal part of me that would choose the sofa over a run any day… but she doesn’t run the show any more (‘run’ the show… I’m a natural wit!). IMG_5144

I have learnt to…um, let’s say… appreciate running.  I appreciate how it helps me come back to my body… to escape my mind for a little while, and ground myself.  I appreciate the sense of accomplishment it gives me when I have finished.  I appreciate the feeling in my muscles when I have pushed myself a little bit more. I love the feeling as my body gets stronger, and the confidence this gives me. I appreciate the people I have met through running, who are an incredibly supportive tribe… many of who run marathons, but are still so helpful and knowledgeable, and welcoming as I struggled with first a 5km, then a 10km, a half-marathon, and my new goal – a marathon.  I appreciate how running has helped me create a different story about myself.  I am no longer the lazy one, no longer the inactive one.  I have pushed myself out of my comfort zone and my image of myself has changed incredibly.

I am finally beginning to call myself a Runner.  It feels good.  I like this new story I am writing.

What have you done that helps you recognize you are more than your original story?

 

 

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