Let me be the first to readily admit that when I am out there running, clearly I am no gazelle.
And let me also admit that for 6 solid months out of the year, by 'out there,' I really mean 'on my treadmill.'
I started running in January of 2010. I weighed 181 pounds. I could go for about 1 minute at 3.2 miles per hour and then I'd walk it out for four minutes. Then, I repeated the process.
In 2010, by embracing physical activity and cutting out the crap (by way of following the Weight Watcher's Points plan) I dropped 40 pounds, hitting a lean, mean 141. You can see the entire year in scrapbook page form by clicking here.
And then I realized that I was really freaking hungry.
I spent 2011 moving back up the scale, trying to find new ways to eat, trying to figure out how I could eat real food in normal quantities and still maintain that girlish figure I so craved.
2011 didn't quite work out the way I'd hoped. From a weight standpoint, I was even steven. I was planted firmly, so to speak, in the mid 150s.
Now in some respects, that's a positive thing. I was eating to live and not just to see how few calories and fat grams I could put into my body. I was learning how junky carb binges translated to feeling like absolute shit less than an hour after they shot down my gullet. I was figuring out what my body needed and how I could go about filling the bill.
I still didn't get any smaller though, and for some reason, that signaled defeat. Somehow, I wasn't quite as good as I was before. Afterall, seeing more chub meant things weren't rolling along as they were before, right?
But during 2011 and right up until present day, one thing has remained constant: I've kept running.
The past Spring has seen more weight climb onto the old bod. At last weigh (yesterday) I was 160.3. It's not for lack of Moving More that is seeing this happen; nope. It's going right back to eating crap and doing things that are not really feeding my body what it needs.
I know this to be true and I really do know what is needed… I'm just not making it happen.
But still, I'm out there, and I'm running.
There is a church with huge plate glass windows in my neighborhood. I pass by it towards the end of my runs on the days I venture outside. When I reach the church, I'm at roughly the 3.5 mile mark of the run. I'm tired, but not spent. I'm moving more slowly but not at a stand still by any means. I usually feel pretty damned good and am often struck by how proud I am of myself that I am out here, doing this, and that I have learned to really embrace and enjoy the running process and everything it offers to me both mentally and physically.
Then I see my reflection in the windows.
There's always a split second of disenchantment; I look awkward in my gait. My butt makes it looks like I'm smuggling two basketballs inside of my run shorts. The awesome, running gazelle woman in my mind evaporates in a puff of smoke as I realize: oh, yeah… this is what I look like when I run.
And yet, no matter what the scale says to me and no matter how much junky crap I've given in to, that run is exactly the steady that I've clung to and have so desperately needed these past few years. The run says to me, "It's alright, Cath. Lace up, let's go… get the sweat out, clear your head. Every day is a new chance to get it all right."
I've had a few injuries here and there that have kept me sidelined for a few days off and on, but by and large, the running has remained a constant.
I don't have this whole thing figured out yet, and very likely, I never will.
So maybe I'm up a bit on the chub factor today.
Chubby or not, I'm still out there and I'm still a girl running.
If you're interested in making changes to your overall health and fitness, Move More, Eat Well is a 12-month online workshop at Big Picture Classes. The focus of this class is to embark on a personal journey that works with your unique lifestyle in helping you to find ways to make the changes you'd like to see on a fitness and health level. Registration is open all year and you can jump in anytime to join the more than 1,550 women and men who've made the decision to try to make changes in their own lives. Move More, Eat Well revolves around a robust community of users who are all creating a scrapbook/journal of their progress. To learn more, click here.