I guess you really CAN teach an old dog new tricks. If you’d asked me a year ago what I thought I’d be doing in a year, I probably would’ve responded with something like, “Sitting on the couch, watching t.v., and sucking down Culver’s hot fudge Concrete Mixer’s. Why do you ask?” And I would’ve been so, so off the mark. Sometimes it feels great to be wrong. Instead of giving up on myself, I invested in myself this year.
In January the opportunity presented itself to join a weight loss challenge. Since it happened to coincide with the compilation of my annual new year’s resolutions, I took it as a sign from the powers that be to do it. After all, who am I to argue with the universe? I convinced eight of my friends and family to join me and set a reasonable and healthy goal of a pound a week for the 12-week challenge. I wasn’t out to win, just to make a permanent lifestyle change.
When that ended, I knew I wasn’t ready to be left all alone with my missing twelve pounds and no guidance, support, or leadership so I signed up for a Couch to 5K class. Another 11 pounds and one noticeably thinner, stronger (and sorer) body later, I did what I’d long thought impossible: I jogged my first 5K!
If you’re sitting there reading this and thinking that you could never do a 5K or fill-in-the-blank with whatever scares the bejeezus out of you, think again. If I did it, then so can you. I wasn’t born with the “I heart running!” gene. Quite the opposite, in fact. I’m a lousy jogger. I’m slow. I have bad form. I complain a lot. I get sweaty and tired and sore. But what I do have is a taste and craving for small victories. What I discovered in January was that with every little thing you do for yourself, especially when it’s something you don’t want to do, you build yourself up a little. It’s like knocking down a lousy self-esteem brick in your psyche and replacing it with a positive one. The more myths about yourself you knock down, the better able you are to see what you’re truly capable of achieving. I’m rebuilding my self-esteem, one block at a time, and you can too! Cue Rocky theme music…