Sunday, September 18, 2011

I Never Knew I would Become a Runner

I Never Knew I would Become a Runner:

The funny thing is I don’t truly enjoy running, the pounding of my feet with each step hitting the hard surface beneath me, the way I huff, as I force my way up a hill or the bright color red plastered across my sweaty exhausted face. No, this is not my idea of having a good time, so why do I do it? Simple, after finding myself on a quick collision path with my mid 40’s I knew like most of you that the time had come to move my body in a more active way, before it seized up and fell over on me.

Conversations with a good friend one day lead to the topic of our impending weight gain since high school. After having two baby girls and loads of spicy guacamole filled tacos later, my slim figure and small butt have engaged in their own conversation, believing in the concept that more is better expansion has set in.

They say confession is good for the soul, but after deep contemplation I chose to believe that not looking into those damn three way mirrors is an act of denial I can live with, as my friend and I continued on our path of self discovery, a challenge had taken place, not one to follow the course of least resistance I allotted my conditions, sharing September birthdays we set the timeline to fall in between the dates of our birthdays.
Replacing years of margaritas and 10:00pm late night dinner runs would take on a wee bit of work, the winner would of course be sporting a new and much improved body, along with a consolation prize from the loser. I was to lose a whopping 15 pounds and my friend was to melt away a mere 30 pounds.

Now let it be said that my friend has a habit of gaining and losing weight, where I have never once tried to lose any weight at all, looking back to my high school days I was 5’6 at 103 pounds and sporting more of Keira Knightley iron board figure then my present more shapely Selma Hayek form at 134.

To rein in my unruly thighs I took up Yoga and found myself in arrangements of down ward dog and lotus positions that truly seemed to help tone up my bottom and waist line. This felt great. I had more energy and loved the full body stretch, but back at home that stupid talking scale in my bathroom refused to acknowledge the hard work I had put in and like a yipping Chihuahua kept announcing my weight at 134. It seemed I have just been moving my weight around and not losing any, I need to get my heart rate up and after weighing my options running seem like the one for me.

Even as a young child I was always outside, running with my friends climbing trees and riding my little blue bike around the neighborhood, it has always been hard to keep me indoors; even now I would rather be digging in my garden than watching T.V., so I was set, I would run in the park down by the river.

My first morning go at my new weight loss procedure was a bit tougher than I expected; I had gone through the check list in my mind. Running shoes-check water bottle-check iPod-check, nothing left to do then start, I hit the pavement slowly, moving under the trees and past the pint sized train station where nursery school aged children waited in line for their turn to board.

What was the big deal, I could do this all day, I had the morning breeze pushing me forward, a family of ducks to keep me company and the soft light of the morning showing me the way, I also had one whopping cramp, WOW, like an electrical surge taken hold of my left calf, and I was down for the count, doing my best to walk the pain off I headed back towards my Tahoe knowing full well I would be reporting to my friend my progress of the day. Sitting in my car I thought about my options, If I quit now I would never build up the tolerance needed to continue running and losing a bet even to a close friend was not in my playbook.

Looking back now I know I did the right thing, my thighs are toner, my butt higher, and my waistline curves sweetly into my slim round hips. I can’t say I won the bet with every pound of taco I lose I gain a pound of muscle, and that stupid yipping scale is still refusing to acknowledge my hard work.

Truth be told I have found a kind of peace to my day I did not know I was looking for. I have found that this 40ish year old women still enjoys the child inside her that the great outdoors is my play ground and I enjoy every sweaty, red-faced, heart pumping minute it will give me.


  1. Hmmm....

    Firstly, I do not think 15 lbs overweight is "whopping"

    Secondly, the scale is just a number, so it doesn't matter if you stayed at 134 lbs and the weight was more muscle instead of fat.

    Thirdly, congratulations for sticking to a regime so that you can have a better body image. It is so important to love yourself and women usually fall way short of doing a good job of it.

  2. I started running at 40. It's been the best thing I've ever done for myself. I feel great and get to be outdoors...also took up yoga too!

    Like you, I wasn't overweight though I felt I was because I just wasn't fit. I image we had similar feelings.

    Running isn't just about the excessive - It's "me" time. A quite time to just be alone and free. Glad you shared your running story!

  3. opps typo! Meant to say "Running isn't just about excessive".