So, the older I become the less tolerance I have for ideals that do not make any sense to me. Often, unfortunately, for those who know me well – I am not very good at NOT expressing my displeasure. Even if I wanted to withhold my opinion, my facial features are very telling and I give my thoughts or feelings away by the look on my face. Hence the reason I do not play poker!
As a younger woman, for oh, I don’t know……the first 25 years of my life, after the age of 5 when most of us learn how to truly express our pleasure or displeasure about life circumstances – I was pretty much a people pleaser aka a doormat. Oh yes!! Believe it or not, that was me! Since the age of 30 though, a metamorphosis has been taking place and now that I am pushing my mid-40’s, my tolerance level for things like double standards and judgment based on ignorance is slim to none.
In my running journey there have been many who have stated that they just don’t understand the “need” or the desire I have to run. Which is fine. Please, tell me you do not understand and I will do my very best to help you gain some understanding. That’s just the kind of person I am. I WANT to help others gain understanding. The problem lies in those who state that they simply don’t understand, then go on to say ignorant things like – it’s dangerous, it’s bad for your body, it doesn’t make any sense…..etc.
As for dangerous – let us compare running outside to driving a motorcycle shall we? Consider the statistic that most fatal auto accidents occur within .25 or 1/4 of a mile from your home. Do we hear this about running. Not last I checked. How about comparing running to another form of exercise I hold dear – road cycling. That is, riding an 18 lb bicycle on the side of a paved road while distracted and often irritated and harried motorists “drive”, supposedly sharing the same road w/those of us on 2 wheels. Hmmm….Sounds pretty dangerous to me! Do we have this level of danger whilst running the trails? Uh…NO! Yes, we must share the trail w/scared deer, fellow runners and even a few stray mountain bike riders but have you ever heard of a catastrophic meeting with any combination of those? I haven’t!
Okay, alright, let us deal with the idea that running the trails is somehow bad for our bodies. I suggest you talk to my chiropractor who gave me the go-ahead to run AND informed me that running the trails is good for you and better, easier on the body and healthier than running on the street. Is it bad for my body to run 20 miles, while eating various (healthy) food types substances? Unhealthy for my body that I drink bottle after bottle of hydration fluid while running the trails? Oh….I KNOW, it’s unhealthy because of all the work done on my muscles from all the variable terrain out there on the trails….right?!
Granted, I will give you that preparing my body to run 100 miles is a bit time consuming at times. It is certainly not an easy task by far! Guess what?! That is EXACTLY the reason why I love it! It is precisely one of the reasons I signed up to complete this 100 mile adventure. It will NOT be easy. It WILL test my very limits – physically, emotionally and spiritually and you know what…those are the reasons why I WILL do this event. The reason I WANT to complete the training leading up to this event is so I can find out…HOW FAR can I go?!
I have lived my life for the most part, according to some set of jacked up rules and regulations and expectations that others have set for me and I have fallen into the habit of trying to live up to those expectations. No, I am not the same person I was 20 years ago. No I am not the same one I was even 10 years ago. We grow. We learn and we continue to move on, changing as we grow. I REFUSE to believe for one moment longer that I am not enough. I refuse to suffer in silence while others determine what it is I am supposed to do/be/think/feel. I am ENOUGH!
No, I am not the perfect: wife/mother/student/teacher/athlete/runner/learner/friend and any other labels one would like to stick me with. Guess what….That is ALRIGHT! God did not make any of us perfect and as long as I still TRY to do what is right, just, fair and true to the standards I have set for myself – I am enough…….I will do what I have always done – persevere and continue to fight for another day. Only now, I am responsible to setting an example for THREE little girls too. I must teach them that they too are ENOUGH. Perfection and submission are not necessary requirements to be loved for who YOU are…
Until next time…