strong

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.

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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/