Get out of your head and get your feet on the ground
It’s the middle of the day. My kiddos are with their grandparents and I have a choice, I can either kick my feet up in our comfy recliner and scroll my phone to my heart’s content or I can get outside and go for a run. I have been putting off running for a couple weeks because I signed up for a 5k with my friends. I know, sounds pretty counterintuitive right? Let me explain. I used to be fit, to paint the picture I could run a 5k in 30 minutes with only moderate effort. Now, not so much. Ever since I had my second baby and have been coping with grief over the last year, I have this narrative that I may never be as fit as I was three years ago. And three years ago, I enjoyed running, did sprint triathlons, and working out was my jam. Now, I still like working out but I don’t run, I haven’t done any races in quite some time, and working out happens nowhere near as regularly. That was part of the motivation to join my friends in this 5k.
So today, one sunshine filled day I decided I would start running again. But, I got in my head about how I just want to kick my feet up and relax. After all, I deserve it right? Then, I started to think of all the reasons why I shouldn’t go run:
“Remember Liss, you broke your ankle last Summer, are you sure you should run?”
“Liss, you threw your back out in March and running makes it worse, you should probably sit this out.”
“You hate running, why would subject yourself to that?”
“Liss, you really aren’t an athlete, why are you pretending that you are?”
“Our neighborhood is all hills, you should probably wait til you can go somewhere that’s more your level.”
And the list goes on and on and on about why I shouldn’t run today. For me, I know this happens when I am supposed to do something but I don’t want to because I am scared to. And it’s exactly that, fear. Running is uncomfortable both physically and mentally. It means I have to put myself out there, what if I look like a total ding bat and can’t keep up with my friends on race day?! Not only will I be physically spent but so will my ego. Is it really worth it?
Since I had a major lifestyle change seven years ago, I still have to battle with myself about who I am and what I am capable of. For most of my life I had this narrative about why I couldn’t do a lot of things. And you know what? I proved myself wrong. I can lift heavy weights, I can run long distances, I can be fit, I can be confident, I can feel good in my own skin, I can achieve what I focus on, I can fail and learn from it. Truthfully, when we make significant growth, that does not mean that we are done growing. I thought I had arrived right before I found out I was pregnant with our second kiddo. I could not have been more wrong. In this life we have to be committed to constantly learning and developing as people. When we think we know it all that’s a key sign that we need to take a look in the mirror and do some internal work. In my current phase of life, I have to focus on getting back in the game and continuously working through the mental gymnastics of personal development.
I am so proud on this day, I chose to get my shoes on and hit the road. As I was running, I realized this dirt road in my neighborhood is my happy place. When all I have to do is get through one mile at a time and one hill at a time that’s where I feel my best. I can get out of my head and literally ground myself to what I am truly capable of. As much as I don’t want to admit it, in this phase I am in right now, I need to focus on my physical health and improving the wellness of my body. Not wanting to admit it is the reason I went through all the mental gymnastics trying to convince myself I shouldn’t go run today. Even though my body is a bit achey, I’m breathing super hard, and feeling a bit self conscious, I am loving the fresh air, seeing the sights, being alone, petting the horses, and feeling accomplished. There’s good and bad to most things that fill us up.
Whatever it is that you are working towards whether its at work, with your family, your fitness, or your mental health, what is is that you don’t want to admit to? Please know your mind will try to protect you by keeping you from doing things that make you vulnerable. It is your job to harness your mind and recognize that all the things you want come on the other side of being out of your comfort zone. You got this. Go get your feet on the ground before your mind convinces you otherwise.
Cheering for you,