You know, I keep reminding myself that I cannot compare myself to others…especially when it comes to fitness/running. Ugh, that reminds me. I’m going to stop calling what I do running. I’m jogging at best even if it’s the best I can do.
Ok, let me backtrack because I know my last post was all “I’m super elated at having run a mile!”
So what happened between now and then? This happened:
And what is this, exactly? You know, because we all know that isn’t MY run I’m posting. That is my friend’s run. He’s male. He stands 6’1″ tall and weighs less than me. He’s been a smoker for longer than I really know and he started running about a month ago. His last run was over a week ago and it was one mile in six minutes and he says it nearly killed him. At the time, all I could think was “you ran a mile in six minutes? You could run two miles to my one.” But he assured me I could certainly beat him in stamina when I get back to my old self.
And then he did nothing for over a week and went out and ran 1.78 miles FASTER than the original mile.
It’s things like this which make me want to cry. I mean, I don’t even think I can reach the speed of 10mph. I’ve seen 8.7 and I was like “woah, I was fast for a brief 30 second sprint!” But 10 mph? Never.
Now, I can remind myself that I didn’t exercise for the first 30 years of my life. I can remind myself that I have shorter legs and more weight to carry around. I can remind myself that I will improve with time. But it doesn’t take away the short term feeling like a loser. Isn’t that crazy how things can mess with you? My entire weight loss journey and fitness journey has been such a mental and emotional battle along with the physical. Yes, I know I shouldn’t compare. It’s just so hard NOT to compare, especially when you’re someone who has grown up overweight, is used to being judged for being overweight and out of shape, and who has heard the scathing remarks made by the fast runners at events. (My very first event was a 5k in which I was barely able to go the entire distance. I was pleased at having finished around 45 minutes only to hear some super fit girl remark “There are still people just finishing???” in a tone reeking of disbelief and scorn. Gee thanks, lady.)
So yes, it’s hard not to feel inferior and whatnot when faced with those stats. I just have to remember that I am giving it my all (and continue to give it my all) and that I will improve. My friend may be a freak of nature, but he was really fit in his younger years and he has those years of exercise that I don’t. I will improve. I will do the best I can. I will remember to celebrate what I can accomplish… because it is far more than I ever dreamed I would. And that, my friends, is something to celebrate.