Well, first, I just wanted to update everyone and say that my no tracking is going well! I am hovering around the same weight I was for the months leading up to my no tracking experiment - perhaps I would weigh a pound or so less if I was tracking right now, but that pound is SO WORTH losing the hassle and stress and obsession of tracking (for me!).
So, I've read a few blogs lately that talk about experiments with running and starting Couch 2 5K and things of that nature. Those posts made me remember, with pride, when I first got out there, myself! Thought I would share the story (since I am NOW at a place where I can up and run 5K whenever I feel like it... the story has a very successful ending!!):
It was the year I was 21/22. I had stepped on the scale for the first time in many years and saw 198.something displayed digitally. I am not tall. I was too heavy. I had no idea. I dedicated myself that moment (it really was an epiphany type moment, a moment my whole mind and my whole life changed) and said out loud "I will never see 200 pounds. This changes today." I knew I had 70 pounds to lose (I am short and slight of frame).
The next morning, I got up at 6 AM, put on my walkman-radio, put on some shapeless sweats and headed outside to walk. I rarely went outside (was such an internet addict and a social-phobe) so I was pretty anxious. But I put my head down and walked. And walked. And walked till I was really tired (my dad actually wondered where I was because I NEVER left the house if not for work and came to look for me).
One day, I walked down to a local nature area with a pond and a trail. The walk to the pond was .5 miles from my house. The trail around the pond was .7 miles. So I used those as gauges for how far I walked.
Eventually, it was easy for me to walk 5 miles. I was proud :) I was never athletic, I never used my body, was always the chubby girl, the clumsy girl. I thought it was time to up my challenge (this is a few months later). I would run!
So I got up the nerve, looked around to make sure no one was nearby (I had lost about 20 pounds but was still insanely self-conscious) and jogged. I jogged for maybe 30 seconds before I nearly fell to my knees, sucking wind. So much harder than I thought.
From that day on, every morning walk was dotted with attempts at running. A little farther each time. Days, weeks, practicing. It went excruciatingly slowly. I felt like I wasn't improving!! Until, one day, I started to think about how MUCH I was walking and jogging. Surely I was getting stronger. I was definitely losing weight!! It had to be a mental thing, in part. I talked myself up while walking, saying "the pond is .7 miles... you WILL run that .7 and you WILL NOT stop."
And I did. I did - even though my heart was pounding through my chest and I was starting to gasp (had no idea how to breathe calmly when running at this point haha) and thought I might die. Logically, I knew I wouldn't die, so I kept going, my legs on fire. The last 15 seconds to where I had started were SO FREAKING HARD, I wanted to stop, say it was "good enough" but I wanted to be proud of myself. I finished.
And cried a little. Okay, a lot. I could run. I knew I could.
The next day I ran a full mile without stopping - very slowly, but I didn't stop.
I remember SO FREAKING CLEARLY how proud I felt, how strong I felt, how good. I knew I was making a change that would last a lifetime, I could feel it in my heart.
I continued to walk and run at that pond over several years, eventually entering 5K races, getting my 5K time sub-30 minutes, losing the rest of the weight and getting on the road to who I am today.
I eventually gave up running (I did it because it was all I knew... now, obviously from my last posts, I am more into hiking, yoga, and strength training) but I will always be grateful for how it made me feel.
I hope anyone out there who reads this gets a better insight to where I started from.
I can't really see that girl who started back then in me now. I am so different. But she is definitely a part of me, and I am so, so, so grateful to her for doing the hard work that needed to be done.
I wrote this post yesterday, as I will be busy with my first substitute job today!