Getting a little more JOLLY, a little more GREEN, and a little less GIANT.

10 October 2012

Trail Running: There's a First Time for Everything

And we're breathing...
I don't know if it's absurd or profound that I've had to lose myself to find myself.

Translation: As I've lost weight, I've gained a new sense of me.

With the loss of dozens of pounds I suddenly have the confidence and willingness to do things I never would have dared dream of doing before. I was too self-conscious, too afraid, too anxiety-ridden, too fat, too lazy, too incapable. I was blinded to my abilities by all that fat and fear.

I get angry with myself for losing so much precious time--like all of my 20s and even much of my adolescence--by being so dang petrified to just get up, get out, and get moving. There is a big wide wonderful world out there to be explored and I'm finally feeling brave enough to explore it!

This was my Facebook status last Saturday morning: "I've seriously lost it now. I've woken up at 6 am on a Saturday so I can drive half an hour to meet a 'stranger' where we will then proceed to RUN up a mountain in the cold and dark. Bonkers."

I met Heidi on an LDS Runners Facebook group. She has been running for over 5 years and has been so kind to mentor this newbie runner online. The other day she offered to meet up with anyone who wanted to for a trail run. I snagged the opportunity iimmediately and agreed to be there.

Aaaaand then considered canceling about 37 times. The anxiety of doing something new with someone new was overwhelming. Even the morning of the trail run, I found myself concocting some kind of excuse to not show up. So typical of 281.5 pound Evelyn.

"What if I can't keep up? What if it's too hard? What if I hold the group back? What if I get hurt? What if? What if? What if?!?"

Heidi and Ethan and their "Take No Wild Turkey Prisoners" faces
While 281.5 pound Evelyn may still be fiercely whispering doubts, I'm learning to ignore her. I went anyway, and although I got lost on the drive there, I eventually made it. Heidi and her son, Ethan, were wonderful people! They are definitely more in shape than me, but they made no fuss about my heavy breathing or slower pace. I only had to ask to walk one time and I kept up the whole way downhill!

Trail running is fabulous! It's so nice to ditch the hard unforgiving pavement and the sounds and smells of the city for soft cushy dirt, colorful fall leaves, and cheerful bird songs. We covered almost 5 miles round trip and even tackled a 300 foot ascent (talk about a calf workout). We saw deer and lots of wild turkeys. We crunch-crunch-crunched through banks of bright red and orange leaves.

As if the scenery wasn't awesome enough I had the opportunity to meet someone I've admired for awhile as well as pick her runner's brain. I've met several blogging friends "in real life", but this was the first time I've met a running friend. (Does this make me a "real runner" now?) Thank you so much for letting me tag along, Heidi and Ethan! I had a fabulous time and can't wait to do it again!

(Who needs a silly comfort zone anyway?!)


Sarah said...

You are such a great inspiration. For so long I've used all my fertility trials as excuses not to run, because some of the time I really couldn't and it was easy to use it for all the other times. Monday I signed up for my first 5K. I can't even run a mile yet but by golly I will finish that 5 K somehow.

Nurse Heidi said...

You are welcome any time, Evelyn! You ought to come join us for the UV Half Marathon next summer. Jacy and Ethan and I are all signed up, shooting for a 2:15-2:20 finish.