Welcome to my running special series. I thought I would devote the next 3 posts to lessons I’m learning through my journey with running. Learning to Run has taught me things about myself that I had no idea about, things I would rather not admit, and things about myself that I’m surprised and even proud of.
Lesson number one: Run Free
I never thought I was a runner. In fact, I still don’t. I would say my first run was last year at the race for life 2012 where I walked most of it. However, I found this old picture of myself back home visiting my folks for fathers day. Thats me – bowl haircut and in glorious 80s fashion and jelly shoes, running my first race 4 years old at our school sports day. Its strange, when I look back at my childhood I don’t ever think of it as “Active” or remotely related to any form of sports of exercise. Yet I find this picture, and I just look happy, determined, focus and FREE. This is an age before the self doubt, worry and negativity crept in.
A lot taller, and a lot heavier now I realise I have so many negative thoughts in my mind that over the years I’ve deposited in the bank at the back of my mind. Many people have told me directly or indirectly that I can’t be an active person, and so much so its now part of my own mind make up. It takes almost as much effort to get out the front door for me as it is to run the couch to 5k, battling those negative “you can’t do it” thoughts is like my half marathon before I’ve put on my nikes.
I love this picture for so many reasons. Mainly because it has given me faith in myself that I was designed to run. I was designed to be free. This photo was taken before a time i was judged on my weight, or my (in)abilities, before I created a “inner script” for my life. Before I knew what “can’t” means.
It is time to let go. Let go of the negative thoughts, let go of the expectations (or lack of) from others. Let go of what you think you can achieve, or have been told you can (or can’t) do. Run Free. Run like its sports day and you are 4 years old and you don’t know what obesity is, or low self esteem is, or negative thinking. Run because thats what you do, run because you can.