Change

Progress, and a good day

Today, after college, I got on a treadmill and kicked ass. This was despite walking to my bus stop, and nearly getting the first bus home because I felt like I didn’t have the energy for a run. At the last minute, I turned around and decided I did. I was right.

I ran 10km in under an hour for the first time, and was 3 minutes and 13 seconds faster than my previous personal best. I’m still 14 minutes and 47 seconds off my goal time, but today, I made a lot of progress. I am closer to reaching my goals now than when I got out of bed this morning. So it was a good day.

I realised that most of the things that limit me and hold me back are in my head. I am capable of a lot more than I give myself credit for. I definitely need to work on having a more self-positive mindset. I need to believe I can do things, reach goals, and if I put in the work, I will. I need to stop being so discouraged with myself.

Every time I run, I try to remind myself that 8 months ago, I could only run 1 kilometre, and my legs hurt for a day after that attempt. So when I feel like giving up, I think of where I can be in 3 months, or 6 months, or a year if I don’t. The future is exciting.

Being outside, looking in

Something has to crack to let the light in. 

When I started to crack, I wasn’t so comfortable with what the light shone on. And, left ignored, the cracks only became deeper, and bigger. It took a long time before I was ready to stop and face the fact that everything was not OK. I was not OK. And once I did that, I no longer saw the cracks as a nuisance, but as a way for me to learn, and reflect. The cracks were a way out, an opportunity to step outside and look in at myself, look in at my life, and see what was wrong.

Given the choice, I would always like to be told what I need to hear, not what I want to hear. It’s not pleasant that way, but I believe it is essential. Anxiety attacks were never pleasant for me. In fact, they were the most terrifying times of my life. But to me, they were also a message. They were a message to me that something was wrong, that there was some aspect of my life I needed to step back and look at, then change.

It took me a long to realise this, to realise that my anxiety attacks were something I could learn to control. That was my first step towards a solution. It was a long journey, full of baby step, and days when I felt that taking one step forward would only result in me falling two steps back. Some days, I even feel myself drifting backwards again, some days, I fall all the way back.

It is because of this that I set resolutions that would change so many aspects of my life in 2014. Along the way, I have come to realise that investing time in myself, in my dreams, in reaching my goals is so important. There is no one aspect of my life that I can allow myself to be completely fixated on. Balance is important. Living the life I want to live is important. I am important.

Prompt: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/01/09/daily-prompt-outside-2/

What makes me happy.

I’m very lucky in that so many things in my daily life make me happy.

Spending time with friends, my boyfriend, my family, books, running, mugs of green tea, chocolate, how I feel after a training session, cuddling, learning, writing, making friends, cooking, sunshine, walks, music, talking….

Anything that makes me feel empowered and strong.

But today, I despite the presence of so many of my friends, I didn’t feel empowered, or strong.

Today, I came 3rd (out of 3) in a race. The girl who came 2nd has never beaten me before. I didn’t feel jealous or resentful or bitter, I just felt that I could have done better. That I should have trained harder, tried harder, pushed harder. That I lack some strength that I need to improve. I felt like I let myself down. 

I think that messing up and making mistakes (I did plenty of both today) is important. It helps you to grow, to learn and to avoid the same mistakes in future. But still, this initially hit pretty hard. I started to question myself a lot.

Usually, when I face a problem, I find that it’s not really the problem I’m facing that is the problem, it’s my attitude towards the problem. So today, instead of continuing to beat myself up, I tried to change my attitude.

Here’s what I think we forget sometimes:

You are not made of or defined by numbers. You are not a ranking, a percentage on a test, a timing, an amount of likes on a photo, a number on a scale, a number of reps. By all means, if you work hard to reach a number-goal, celebrate that it is an achievement, one of many, but never let it become and all-defining characteristic. You have more substance than numbers.  You are memories, thoughts, actions, a friend, a partner, part of a family, late nights, long days. A number cannot define your infinite worth, and you shouldn’t allow it to control your happiness. 

So instead of looking for an excuse, I have started looking for a solution. I’m already thinking of ways I can improve, things I can learn from, ways in which I can do better. Maybe losing this race was what I needed. It gave me a push, and challenged me to redefine what makes me happy.

Prompt: http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/01/05/daily-prompt-happy/

New Years Resolutions

I like New Years Eve.

It’s a holiday that is centred around new beginnings, a fresh start. It’s a chance to reflect on the year that has just passed, to learn from your mistakes, and move on. It’s a time of great hope.

Putting 2013 behind me is very important for me. 2013 was a year where a lot changed for me, for the better. I graduated from  school and began studying  Science in college. I made new friends, learned a lot about myself, and became a lot stronger.

But I also spent a lot of 2013 afraid.

I was afraid to say no, afraid to say yes, afraid to speak my mind, afraid of trying new things, sometimes even afraid of trying at all. I was afraid of failing, afraid of how I felt, afraid of talking about my feelings, and afraid of what was happening inside my head. I was afraid of losing control, and when I eventually did, I was petrified.

So these are my resolutions, and goals. Some are for 2014, some are for the rest of my life.

  1. To run a mini marathon.
  2. To run 10km in 45 minutes.
  3. To run 5km in under 20 minutes.
  4. To pass first year science.
  5. To go to society events in college.
  6. To be happy, healthy, fit and strong.
  7. To be confident.
  8. To become closer to my friends.
  9. To stop biting my nails.
  10. To practice self care regularly.
  11. To let go of thoughts that do not make me feel empowered and strong.
  12. To waste less, and learn to live on what I have.
  13. To be more open, to engage with people and life more.
  14. To spend more time outdoors.
  15. To learn to drive.

I set up this blog today so that I can track and document the changes in my life over the next year, and beyond. 😀