One can for every pound I lose...bring it!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


I crossed something off my bucket list this weekend. The first and only thing so far, actually. I didn't even know I HAD a bucket list until just a few months ago, when I decided to sign my BFF and I up for our first 5K. And not just an ordinary 5K - a run in Disney (I'm a "go big or go home" kind of gal.) Pardon the pun, but I wanted to find my happy pace in my happy place. It was extra incentive.

You may already know that I was the girl who said she'd "never run." You may also already know that I am kind of short for my weight, and this made it a bit harder on me and my knees. If you've followed my blogs, you may also know that I start and stop things without finishing them a lot. This is something I am working to overcome in this New Year.

What happened this weekend, to me, was nothing short of a miracle. I know that to some, it's "only" a 5K. I know that to others, it's 3.1 miles of un-doableness (my word).

I had a plan. I downloaded the Couch to 5K app (now called "Ease Into 5K") and started off slow. 45-seconds-of-running kind of slow. The day I ran for two minutes I thought I might die (yes, I sometimes have a flair for the dramatic, but for real- I thought I might die). I gradually worked my way up to 15 minutes non-stop just a few weeks before we were to leave.

Cue the shin splints.

A week before the run, they were almost unbearable. "Here we go again" was the anthem in my head that week. It was a Murphy's Law event that happens to me a lot.  But, I heeded some good advice from my doctor and left for the trip pretty much pain-free. But I was scared, and doubted my ability to run.

Up until the actual run, I kept going on about my plan for the race. "OK, let's run for 15 minutes, then walk for 3, and then see how far we can run before we have to walk again." Running the whole race was not an option, because I was 100% certain I could not run the whole thing. Until I went to the port-a-potty.

Guess I better explain THAT one.

The morning of the race we stood in line to use the bathroom. In front of us was a woman with a little girl that I started to talk to. She was very overweight, by at least 100 pounds. She explained she had already lost 150 pounds just by running. I asked if she was running the 5K and she said "No, I'm doing the half tomorrow."

Half. As in half marathon. As in 13.1 miles.

My friend and I looked at each other and right then and there decided "We are running the whole thing." That woman whose name I did not catch was the inspiration that we could do it. God bless her, she gave us the confidence that we needed. When I've watched the Biggest Loser contestants run a marathon I've often thought "If they can do it, so can I" - and this woman was a real life, right in front of us example of endurance and commitment and confidence. I don't believe I stood in her line by accident. Divine intervention was at work.

My goal was a realistic "under 45 minutes". I am happy and proud to say I finished in 40 minutes, 15 seconds, and I ran the whole thing. There were times I wanted to stop and there were times I did not trust this body of mine to get me through but I pushed on, because for once in my life I wanted to finish something I started, darn it.

It's one thing to do something someone else says you can't do. It's a kind of "in your face!" moment. But when you do something that YOU say you couldn't do, it's such a deeply spiritual, emotional breakthrough. I am forever changed by this experience, it's mine and no one can take it from me, and I did it. I don't need accolades from anyone, I don't need to wait for words of praise. I don't need anyone's approval. I have accomplished something that shifted my entire being into wanting to be a better version of me -I've neglected myself for too long, and made excuses for that neglect, and blamed other people's actions for MY bad choices. Nope, this is all about me now. I just know that I've turned a corner mentally, and my physical struggle is just beginning, but the hard part really is over. I have let go of the fear and the doubt and the lack of self-worth and am starting to believe in myself again, even when I don't think other people believe in me or find me worthy. I am believing Jeremiah 29:11 for me, really believing it, and starting to live like I believe it, instead of wallowing in my self-pity and wondering who really loves me for me. The feeling of being "unlovable" has gotten me to being 50 pounds overweight, but I am determined to conquer this once and for all.

I love me for me, and I will start showing it so that others can see it in the way I take care of myself. Never again will I say I can't do something.


  1. I am so proud of you!!! I had this wonderful cheerleader-style letter written in my head, but to my shame, did not get onto 'paper' to deliver to you BEFORE the big race. Now, I celebrate with you for your amazing feat...physically, yes...but even more so, spiritually and mentally. You are AMAZING!!!! So grateful to know you! Run, Diana, Run!!!