comparison can really ruin a person.
self loathing can do even more damage. now i know i’m not the 400 pound person that oprah or dr. phil is saving during primetime talk show heaven. but i am just the average person who used to be in really good shape and now absolutely hates her body. i am not too different from almost every other female out there. in high school i ran cross country. i also played basketball, not very well, but hey, i was the number one rebounder! i spent my summers lifeguarding. that occupation is a breeding ground for feeling extremely good about yourself. who wouldn’t when you are exceptionally tan, wearing a red bathing suit, swimming laps and teaching swim lessons all day… not to mention getting whistled at and invited to peter piper pizza or mexico depending on who was doing the asking!
after that i spent the next two years in two different latin american countries, where no matter how much i sweat or how little make up i wore or how very ugly my jumper was, i was still chased down and hooted after. coming home was quite a confidence crusher. no more whistles or hoots. and definitely no more naked men chasing me (thank goodness).
i would train hard off and on. i ran a half marathon in utah with my cousin and another one in baltimore. (i would suggest the provo river 1/2 marathon over the baltimore unless you prefer running up hill in crack-whore neighborhoods). but a crazy work schedule and stress and traveling kept interrupting my running schedule.
so here i am, trying to get back into the shape i was in 10 years ago. i’m not shooting for the bronze tan. that idea is lost in the past… but i would like to feel good about myself. so monday morning i woke up and ran. i listened to a podcast of “this american life” and it felt good. and then i realized i was winded much earlier than i should have been. my legs slowed to a walk. my breathing forced. over the voice of ira glass on my baby i-pod i heard a gruff voice yell, “you got’s to keep going girl!” startled, i looked up and spotted an older, black gentleman sitting on his porch, enjoying his morning… and making sure i had a cheerleader to keep going.