The thing about running (or jogging) is that, when you are getting ready to go do it, it doesn’t sound like fun. At least, not at 5:30 AM when you didn’t sleep so well and you know you won’t be able to go back to bed afterward.
So, today was another one of those days. I didn’t want to go. In fact, I was arguing with myself on the way to the running class I’ve signed up for. My inner negotiator was telling me I could do less. Today we were “time trialing” a 5K for baseline speed. I could tell you I know I am going to be in the slow category. I don’t need a “time trial” to tell you that. Every run/jog/waddle, I am faced with the trial of being slow. Being last. Being late. But, as I was told by the mentor today, and as he has told me before: “You’re already way ahead of everyone who stayed in bed this morning.”
I had to think on that. I’m ahead of all the people who slept in. All the people who said they’d start an exercise plan. Maybe tomorrow. Maybe next week. Maybe when they lost 20 lbs. I’m already ahead of the excuse-makers, the quitters, the when-I-get-around-tuits. It made me feel better. I’m ahead.
But most importantly, I’m ahead of who I was a few short years ago. The person who didn’t run. The person who was about 90 lbs heavier. Who could barely walk a few blocks without getting winded. I’m ahead of her, my former self.
And when I finished today, there was that familiar feeling of accomplishment. Of doing something good for me. Endorphin rush. Oftentimes I get an actual buzz from a good run. Today was no different. Even when it was hard to start. I’m ahead and I feel good.
If I were to tell my prior self that I went for a run today, she would probably blink a few times in disbelief. But I like to think she would be glad for me. And she would cheer me on. And we would both celebrate the fact that I’m ahead of where I used to be. And I’m going to keep on going. Because I can. And because it feels good, especially when I finish.