Am I good enough?
It is a question we have all asked ourselves and probably answered with "no" more often than with "yes". From my own personal life I know that for me that the devil on my shoulder, is so much louder than his counterpart on the other side. Negative self talk is one of the biggest obstacles. When I face it in my daily life and especially when it comes to running, I can come up with every excuse in the book. Here are a few of my most used excuses:
·I'm tired/ in pain- I suffer from a chronic autoimmune disease (ulcerative colitis) that keeps me in pain 24/7. It causes inflammation of my joints, severe fatigue, among other horrible things and the medications I am on cause weight gain and more fatigue. I live my life daily in pain and tired so if I let THIS excuse keep me from getting up and getting out there, I never would. If I let it dictate turning around and going home during a run, I would never get anywhere. I just have to decide that I am strong enough to put one foot in front of the other and live my life with a disease as opposed to letting the disease dictate my life.
·It's too cold/hot- I have more running clothes than real clothes. I should (and can) dress for any temperature and get outside. I also have a gym membership and inside there are these crazy machines with a belt that will keep you moving forward. If it is that nasty outside, I really could drive there and use the human hamster wheel.
Which brings me to my next excuse:
· The gym is too crowded- my experience has been that it doesn't matter if every treadmill is empty, if I am on one, someone (usually a decent looking younger guy) will hop on the one next to me and start his "warm-up" at a pace double mine. So if it is crowded I suck it up and go anyways. Maybe one day I will be the intimidating runner but it will never happen if I am not taking the steps to get there.
·It's raining- A. See above (I got that membership for a reason) or B. Just suck it up and go. I have never let the rain keep me from a race (mainly because if I paid for it, I am doing it) so if I can RACE in the rain, why do I feel I can't train in the rain?
· I am so slow- I am a turtle, maybe even a sloth, BUT I am doing something. Moving forward will always trump sitting still. I spent so much time wallowing in self pity, watching everyone around me live their lives that it was depressing. When my brother and sister-in-law had their children, I was too tired to play with them unless we were sitting and doing something quiet. I needed to change that and now, I may still be slower than most, but I am faster than I was and if my nieces and nephew want me to chase, them I will.
·I look stupid/fat/ridiculous- they used to not make decent workout clothes for plus size women. It took a lot of shopping to find clothes I felt good in that were functional and cute. I didn't even have to spend a ton of money. I bought a few core pieces that I feel good in and if someone else has the gall to say something to me, let them. I know now that letting their petty words get to me will only make me want to try harder. I use their words to fuel the fire inside of me.
Those are all excuses that my negative self talk gives me before I even step out the door, before I even lace up my shoes, before I even put on my running clothes, before I even get out of bed. Every day there is a battle and we all have our own shoulder devils and our own excuses. What I have been trying to learn to do is to duct tape his mouth shut before he can tempt me to give up. I think we all need to block out the negatives long enough to get up, get dressed, lace up and get out there... then we can deal with clearing our heads with each step we take. Run, walk or crawl keep moving forward and when we ask ourselves 'are we good enough?', the answer should always be "yes!"
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