Running The Race
2017 – January – 2
Today’s THE day …. Day 1 …. again. Yes, again. I have attempted this crusade before only to give up after a few weeks. This time…. THIS time … I am determined to make it become my new lifestyle not just a chore, an errand, a must do … a let’s just get this thing over with.
So, this morning I grabbed my tennis shoes, threw on an old t-shirt and capris, and forced myself out the door. I am not a fancy gal – more of “let’s get things done” type. Even sitting in my minivan in the driveway, I really wasn’t sold on this “new” idea. There were so many other things I could be doing this morning. You know it is 7 a.m., the house is quiet, the kids are still sleeping …. Peace on Earth.
But no, I told myself, this is a life choice. You MUST do this for yourself. You’ve spent the last 10 years focused on others, letting yourself go, and feeling the disappointment every day, every time you look in the mirror, every outfit you try on. TODAY is YOUR DAY! That’s right! YOUR DAY! Let the kids sleep in! Take this time for YOURSELF! Noone will notice or care … except YOU! (and that inner little voice whispered in my ear “You deserve this.”)
As a wife and mom whose heart is truly about helping others and giving back, this concept of “deserving” anything is tough to accept. To think I “DESERVE” something, well, feels extremely selfish. Sure I would LIKE a LOT more things in life than I want to admit, both material and relationship wise, but to “deserve” something as though it is owed to me, let’s just say a bit of guilt sets in.
Sitting at the stop light, I could feel the pull of my favorite coffee place …. WaWa, yes, I heard you calling (and calling again). Dreamily I imagine a fresh cup of half decaf/French vanilla cappuccino warming my hands – the sweet smell filling me with peace and energy to tackle my day. I could hang out in the parking lot for the next hour quietly sipping my precious drink – no children asking for anything, no pressing work emails, no sense of obligation to tackle some household chore. Oh the determination it took to continue onward.
It was a long 2 miles to the fitness center. So many places I could spend the next hour – Target, I heard your offer of super savings on holiday items. Starbucks you beckoned me with your sweet hot chocolate and lemon bread. Even the lure of the quiet parking lots urged me to just stay awhile. Imagine … the peace of nothing, no obligations, no one needing anything … for an entire hour.
My van made it to the fitness center. I took this as a sign, I am meant to do this, really do this – not think about it, not talk about some day making a change, but actually take the first step. I tried this 18 months ago, just so you know, but my self-doubt won out. Life took over. I found so many other ways to spend my time – claiming, of course, my life was just too busy to fit yet another thing in my schedule … such as my own health.
Each step along the way, each corner and stop light and opportunity to turn around and take the easy way out, to accept my self-doubt, letting my insecurities win, throwing in the towel before it was even taken out of the gym bag … I would be lying if I didn’t admit, it was super difficult. I mean, really, really, extremely difficult. Who am I to be the person I remember before children?!
But, I took a deep breath, opened the door, and heard that little voice gently whispering …. “This is for you. Soon you will feel better about yourself, which is truly your goal because you know once you feel better, you will be better for others – especially those dearest to you … your family.”
Much to my surprise …. I STAYED! To survive, I tuned out everything and everyone around me. I didn’t want to look like some wanna be or make a fool of myself. Fortunately at 7 a.m., there were only a few cars outside so I am guessing less than 10 people working out.
I really stayed – not just for 5 minutes or 15 but for the entire time of my original plan. I could not begin to count the times I thought about leaving as I thought about all I could be accomplishing at home.
But I chose to stay, to do this for me, to believe in myself and make a difference for myself, my health, and those I love. I accomplished 1.59 miles in 30 minutes on the treadmill. And much to my surprise, I look forward to going back tomorrow.
P.S. I didn’t even stop for coffee on the way home.