As summer gets into full swing here, I’ve been chillaxin’ poolside more lately, and I’m a girl, so come on, I’m gonna be a little critical of my body.
A lot of people run because they love it, but I think it’s safe to say more people run to lose weight (and look good for swimsuit season!). I’d be lying if I said I only run because it’s fun for me. I rarely weigh myself because I’m happy with my body image and weight.
But it hasn’t always been that way.
All through HS and college, I was a competitive runner on cross country and track teams. Training hours every day. I’ve always cared what I put into my body (balance and nutrition), but moderation was not part of my vocabulary.
When I graduated college and entered grad school, I was stressed beyond belief and stopped running. Within 6 months, I gained 15 pounds. When I went home over Christmas break that year, I remember going shopping and having to buy two sizes up.
That’s when I realized healthy body weight is not just a gift to be taken for granted (like I was in HS and college). It’s something that requires effort. Being healthy isn’t constrained to a number on a scale. It’s a lifestyle.
Lucky for me, I lived with an incredibly encouraging/active roommate, who ran, mountain biked, rock climbed, and hiked ALL the time. Her choice to live an active lifestyle inspired me. I remember telling her I thought she was crazy for running in the -40*F weather up in her hometown in Alaska over break, and her saying something like “well, you can’t just sit around, you’d be bored!”.
She made me realize there’s no excuse for not living an active lifestyle. Bad weather, stress, busy work, travel… who cares… it’s your choice every morning to decide how to be active that day. So after that, I got back into running, planned fun mountain hikes/trips for the weekends, and never looked back.
6 months later, I was back to my pre-grad school weight (and jeans!). And you can still find me playing in the mountains on the weekends, and running 3-5 days of the week.
And ya know what? I hope to be the same way in 10, 20, 50 years from now.
I’ll always look up to the busy-mothers/ traveling-businessmen/ retired-65 year olds/ injured athletes who chose to stay active despite it all. It’s those people who inspire me the most. Surround yourself by those folks, and you’ll see how easy it is to chose to be active too :)
Do you have a ‘least fave’ part of your body? (for me.. it’s my abs/stomach for sure)
How do you find motivation to stay active?