Run, Forrest, Run!

Forrest felt like running…and so do I.

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I want to walk out the front door in the morning with my pumped up kicks on…iPod fully-loaded…bounding with energy. I want to walk out the door and run. Run for hours. Run for miles. And so I begin.

Since I seem to do everything by the ‘go big or go home’ philosophy, I have opted to not just begin running, but to train for a half marathon.

Me…run 13.1 miles?! I know you’re laughing. Trust me. I’m laughing too. Thinking about me having the ability to run more than 50 yards about makes me want to crawl under the covers and hide.  Then again…so did the thought of losing weight when I started all of this, and look how far I’ve come on that front?!  See?! 55 pounds and counting!

Running is not natural for me. It doesn’t feel natural and I guarantee it doesn’t look natural. The earth shakes on its axis when I run. My brain jiggles in my skull when I run. I look more awkward trying to jog than Shaquille O’Neal would look doing ballet.

But it is my mission. It has been my goal since the beginning. One of my life-long dreams is to run a half marathon. And I’m going to do it.

And the training officially started Monday.  Thanks to a running coach I had a few years ago, I have a 29 week program that will take me from barely being able to run from my bedroom to the bathroom, to running 13.1 miles.

There is no turning back now…I’ve put it out there for the world (ok not the world, but my faithful followers) to see.  As of August 4, 2012 this girl will be half marathon ready!

And while we’re talking about Forrest…

I watched it last weekend for probably the 3000th time, and a few of the lines I’d heard a zillion times before stuck with me a little more than normal.

Forrest’s momma told him he wasn’t different. Told him he was just like everybody else. Despite the fact that his back was as crooked as a politician or his IQ was less than 75, he was taught to believe he was no different. He didn’t let his physical or mental limitations stop him from doing what he thought was right. He put himself out there with little to no regard of his obvious uniqueness. He was comfortable with what he was. His self-confidence came naturally, despite a number of reasons that any average person might retreat to avoid rejection or humiliation.

So I started thinking about my own self-image. I’ve let my chubbiness be my disability. I have let it trick me into believing that I am neither normal nor good enough. I could have had all the confidence in the world but I didn’t. I let society convince me that because I was overweight, I was inferior.

I am making progress in my belief in myself, but I am still struggling in believing that I’m good enough when compared to others. I somehow have convinced myself that I am inferior to every single woman on the planet who weighs less than me. That personality and wit and brains could not possibly be as good in me as they are in someone skinnier and more attractive than I am.  In a restaurant I will secretly think in my head, “No one is paying you any attention because there are plenty of women in here much thinner than you are.”  I honestly believe that a girl with no teeth, no education and no sense of humor is better than me because she’s a size 2 and I’m a 14?! Seriously? That sounds even more stupid to type.

Where did I pick up this notion that skinnier women are better? Who sent me the memo that all men care about is a woman’s dress size?

When will I genuinely trust that I am an incredible catch? That there is no better than me?…Who I am now the same person I was 55 pounds ago. I am no more intelligent, no more funny, no more charismatic now than I was then. Being 4 sizes smaller hasn’t made me finally desirable, it’s just fine-tuned what was already awesome.

I don’t want to compare myself to anyone else anymore. I want to be proud of me and everything that I am and everything that I offer. I am so close to being there…so close to believing in myself 100%.

No more running from my own self confidence… I’ve had enough beating myself up for one lifetime. The only running this girl will be doing is 13.1 miles toward the finish line!

On your mark, get set…Go!

“The image of myself which I try to create in my own mind in order that I may love myself is very different from the image which I try to create in the minds of others in order that they may love me.” ~ W.H. Auden