During the summer of 2010 I started the Couch to 5k program. I tried and tried and tried to run and SOMEthing kept holding me back. Looking back, it was most plausibly ME. I had pain in my knees back then, I was still severely self-conscious and quite honestly didn't have the best faith in myself. And I used these as excuses, ie - I can't breath, my knees hurt, etc. Well, perhaps those were true conditions, it's hard to say considering how much of an impact your mental state can make on your physical state. Maybe I really DID need to lose more weight before I started running and having that much impact on my knees. Or maybe I just needed more time to mentally prepare myself. During the Spring/Summer of 2010, I joined a weight loss challenge through Subway. I lost 13 pounds before I weighed in and then continued to lose 32 pounds after I weighed in. I ended up winning third place in body fat percentage lost in this challenge. The entire time span of the challenge I had intentions of running the Midnight Streak 5k which would take place on the same night that Jared Fogle (from Subway!) and the mayor of Oklahoma City would announce the winners for the challenge. By the time the night approached I had backed out of the race, I was having knee problems and was suffering from severe anxiety at even THINKING about doing the race. So on August 14th, 2010, I went to the event, found out I placed, and accepted my award and the prizes included. I got my picture taken with Jared and the mayor and went about my merry way. I couldn't help but feel like a failure, I wasn't prepared to run the race and I only placed third. (I'm my own worst critic). Below is a picture from that night, 45 pounds into my journey.
I'm TERRIFIED in this picture, not only to be on stage in front of a TON of people, but to meet Jared Fogle and Mayor Cornett AND to get my picture taken.
One year and 78 pounds later, I went back to the Midnight Streak 2011, on August 13, 2011. I did not enter the Subway Weight Loss Challenge this year, I did however run my first ever 5k.
My goal was to run in under 35 minutes. My official time was 34:54. I placed 296 out of 520 women. I placed 63 out of 114 of women 25 - 29. This was an anniversary of sorts for me. I had come back to a place that was near the start of my journey and I finished what I started. It may have taken me a year and a lot more pounds, but I did it. Before that night, I have never in my life cried because I felt victorious or successful, or proud. I've lost 123 pounds in the past year and a half and not once was I so overcome with gratitude and happiness and just overflowing with a sense of accomplishment to the point of tears. But, my friends, I cried just a little that night. It wasn't the easiest run, I was attacked with a case of heartburn and I'm sure I could have run faster, could have done better, could have pushed harder. But the thing is, I finished, and I finished under my goal. Just thinking about that night, and realizing that I met a HUMONGOUS goal of mine, not only to run my first 5k under 35 minutes, but to run a 5k at all..... thinking about that makes me tear up even now. I don't know if there's any feeling that can top that. Remember SparkFriends, it's not just about a number on the scale. I've got a 5k on September 10th to prepare for, what goals are YOU working towards?