This is not a post to brag or boast, in fact it is quite the opposite. It is a confession of sorts...
I began running in 2011. I was a stay at home mom with a 3.5 year old and a 6 month old that began to crave my early evening runs on our gravel road a few nights a week, it was my “me” time. Some of you know my story and know that the next 4 years of my life included running, teaching fitness classes and triathlon as well as a weight in the "normal" BMI range for the first time in my entire life! In 2015, I bit the bullet and signed up for my first full marathon. Unfortunately, my Crohn's disease reared its ugly head with a vengeance and I was hospitalized only a month before the marathon and decided it was best to sit it out. I ended up requiring surgery later that year to remove a section of my small intestine. I had something to prove, though, so when sign up for the marathon came around again I think I may have been the first runner to submit my registration. I ran Grandma’s Marathon in June of 2016, then I quit. Like literally quit on myself.
I blamed it on working full time. I blamed it on being a busy mom. I blamed it on pretty much everything but myself. I signed up for runs, started training and quit. I had a brief glimmer last winter of what was to be a relay race only to have Covid strike and I half-heartedly got my miles in mostly walking.
Fast forward to the fall of 2020 in the middle of a panic stricken state due to the pandemic, I finally took control. When I started running I ran for my weight loss, my physical health, but also my mental health as a stay at home mom. Why hadn’t I thought of this sooner (like in the beginning of Covid)? In November I started ALL over at the very beginning, day 1 couch 2 5 K program I had done in 2011, same gravel roads, same structure but thanks to advancements in technology I was no longer carrying a flip phone and a stop watch with ink on my arm to tell me when to run and when to walk.
I was pretty silent about this adventure. My family knew, I did a couple of Instagram stories while running and I eventually told one of my biggest cheerleaders via text that I felt like “I” was back.
In addition to starting couch 2 5k I hired a coach. Do I know how to eat right? Yep! Do I know how to plan workouts? Yep! Did I stick to my plans over the last 4 years? Nope! Time and time again I would quit on myself only to feel worse and ashamed that I was failing myself, my family and community that I had previously led on their wellness journeys. So I did the only thing left to do, I started over from THE VERY BEGINNING! Day 1 taking care of my mental health, Day 1 couch 2 5k, Day 1 having my amazing sister-in-law as a coach guide me with a fitness and nutrition plan that I could LIVE with and one that didn’t require hours of working out!
I started over. Completely started over doing all of the things that I know work to make me a better ME! I have journaled at night everyday since November 1st, not missed a planned workout since then, and tonight I did my final run of the Couch 2 5 K program, with the fastest mile I have run since my “restart”! I stayed committed in a way that I haven’t in many years. All but two of those runs have been outdoors which has meant layers, wind, darkness and sometimes rain/sleet.
Like I said this is not meant as a boast or brag! It is a reminder that sometimes, sometimes you just have to go back to where you started to find your way again. Even if you are hanging your head a little when you start again I guarantee you by the end your head will be held high and you will be so proud of your accomplishment (whatever it is) wellness, financial, writing, any commitment.
If you made it to the end, thanks for reading and I hope this sparked some of you to take a deep, long breath and start again!
Good luck in your adventures, I would love to be your cheerleader! Give me a shout and tell me what your "starting over" looks like!