Inspiration. Me? Really? I’m humbled. I’m near tears. I’m honored. I’m just trying to be me, in the healthiest and fittest fashion that is possible. Yet numerous times recently, I’ve been humbled by someone’s words citing me as their inspiration. I have had a gal at zumba who is larger tell me that she watches me because if I can do it, she can too. I have had my 18 year old coworker (more on him later in this post) express his interest to run again after watching me. Seriously? I’ve sparked you to start running again? I just got an email from a gal that I used to talk to quite regularly. We were in a weight loss challenge years ago. She and I have been friends on face book for years. (in fact I think she is the one that got me to sign up about 7 or so years ago…even though I barely used facebook for the first year or two I was a member), so we have never really lost touch, we just don’t really communicate. Anyway, I got an email from her today. Basically just saying “You running is amazing and inspiring. How did you start.” I didn’t set out to be an inspiration. I’m just a gal that is out there pressing myself to be better each and every day (or maybe ‘most days’….I have a few bobbles). As I said, I’m humbled. Will it change how I act and what I do everyday? No. I am in competition with myself and each day I will strive to win that competition, regardless of anything else!
This morning I had the pleasure (pain sometimes takes on the form of pleasure as discussed yesterday) to run with a co-worker. I was tickled to have someone to run with. WEEE
We met up at 8AM and set off. Immediately my heart rate jack rabbited up, way up. I didn't feel as if I was going any faster, but my HR was at least 10 beats per minute higher. Since it felt the same to me, I looked to the only difference that I could readily see. Music. Normally I run with music in my ears. Easy enough fix, I turned on my cell phone to Pandora radio and we had some tunes rolling mere moments later. The music helped me take my mind off of the higher heart rate. We talked a bit as we ran. I struggled because my HR was just so high. It was so high that I have to admit, that when I hit the hill that I've run up the last 2 days, I made it halfway and then slowed to a walk. Ok ok ok, I admit it. that wasn't the first time I walked. I walked twice during the run this morning. When we were done, I looked at the stats. I have been running right about a 12.30 minute mile, average. Today we ran 11.55 minute average miles. Thirty seconds doesn't seem like a lot, but let me tell you......it's a BIG difference! (and that 11.55 average includes those two walk breaks!)
The person I ran with is young. He's 18 years old. I've known him about 5 months through work. He struggles with his weight. He was overweight growing up and a year or two ago his friend was preparing to join the military and wanted to be in shape and thus started running. My friend lost 40-50 pounds by training with his friend. When the running stopped, he regained some. He talked this morning about how he kicks himself for letting his fitness level drop and allowing some of the weight to creep back on. This young boy this morning was quiet for a bit after sharing how he kicks himself. Suddenly he said something that made me smile from ear to ear. He said, "MaryFran, I don't want to sound creepy, but since I've met you, you have totally changed." I had a feeling I knew what he was talking about. But I wanted to be sure so I asked what he meant. Stammering and shyly (remember, I'm old enough to be this boy's mother...in fact his parents ARE my age) he says. "Your shape and your body have changed, for the better too." I just looked over and him and grinned and said "Thanks! It's good to know that my hard work is paying off." No more was said, but my heart was singing.
That was actually the second compliment that I had received....and it was barely past 8AM. The first was a message on face book by a person that had apparently driven by while I was returning a book to the library yesterday. (I guess the third was the email about me being the inspiration). (Cue the Chicago song, “You’re the inspiration” right about now!)
And now that that song is in my head….adios