I have started trying to run again. My success has been . . . minimal. Previously I have been able to get started and make progress pretty quickly . . . this time . . . not so much. This attempt at running is feeling very much 1 step forward 2 steps back. I cannot find a rhythm. I have not gotten comfortable. Everything feels super challenging.
Part of the challenge is likely the lack of a lofty goal. I keep setting goals but am finding I am not really committed. What I am discovering with this process is that I need a challenge, I need to prove something to someone or everyone that I CAN do whatever this thing is. The trouble I am encountering is . . . I have done it. I’ve run 10ks and half marathons and a marathon. I am finally comfortable enough with my life that I do not have to prove myself to others by doing this thing or that thing. However, I am round and though happy I know there is always room for improvement.
So, what happens if I don’t care about the distance, the pacing, etc.? My identity is so tied to quantifiable accomplishments. Can I find joy in the process? There are times when I LOVE running; however, I am finding in the absence of an external motivating factor I am struggling with devoting myself to running.
I also find myself openly wondering, “Can’t I just be fat and happy?”.
Of course the answer is no. I am me after all, and I do things, and there are adventures to be had and weight to lose.
I also have the sweetest person who helps to motivate me and reminds me that even a little bit of progress is progress . . . which is far more helpful than I ever would have thought, He has big running goals, and I am also learning that I cannot make his goals my goals just because that sounds like a good plan. So, we now have ‘Sunday Runday’ (in addition to ‘Education Sunday’) where we combine a little bit of adventure with the running.
Sunday Runday has developed out of Ian’s ‘Ultra’ training and the need to run trails. I have struggled with the trail runs as I am neither fit nor strong. These runs have left me feeling defeated until yesterday. Yesterday I walked. I didn’t run at all. I took in the sunrise over the lake. I watched cows, deer, bunnies, and birds. I breathed in the cool air and walked over rock paths and up hills. I realized running does not define me. Whether I run 30 miles or walk a block doesn’t matter. So, I walked . . . I walked 8 glorious miles surrounded by gorgeous views. I decided to just be . . . be consistent with the exercise part, be appreciative of the experience, and be comfortable with the fact that I have already accomplished plenty and do not have to prove anything to anyone.