I was feeling pretty proud of myself yesterday, I got up ten minutes late and still made it to the gym in time for my 0500 workout.  It was a good one too, the type that leaves you sore enough that you feel like you really did something.  I left the gym feeling pretty pleased with myself.  My pants are getting super baggy, and I’m starting to get harassed about replacing them, so the results of the hard work are starting to show to others, even if I’m a little slower to see them in the mirror.

So all was good in Jennland, I was feeling ridiculously accomplished in my baggy pants.  Then I sat down to have a work lunch, and apparently this stranger had been warned about me.  He asked “what made you decide to do Everest?” and I replied “stupidity”.  (I have to think a little harder on why I responded this way).  He seemed seriously interested, so I talked a little bit about it and how I have to lose a lot of weight to make Everest a reality. Turns out he did the Ironman a few weeks ago.  By “did the Ironman” I mean 2.4 mile swim followed by a 112 mile bike followed by a marathon 26.2 mile run.  I mean, this guy is like the superhero of couch taters everywhere.  He’s the bombdiggity of triathletes.  The megabombdiggity with sprinkles on top and a side of wicked awesome.

He really was awesome, encouraging, recommended some great training hikes, gave me some great advice on electrolyte replacement to help with my superbonkyness the last time I did the stair climb from hell (which I am repeating on Saturday). He was helpful and encouraging and all things generous.  So immediately I started hating on myself for being pathetic and weak and not being able to run and I managed to make myself feel bad about myself because I was sitting across the table from someone who finished a major lifetime achievement that he worked his tail off for.  Not only did I make it all about me, I made it negative.  Ugh. At least it was all in my own head until right now when I’m writing this down.

So, after a few hours of self-loathing I tell myself to flip that freaking frown upsidedown, I’m not going to let such an amazing example go to waste.  I’m just not. I will take that advice and I will be so happy to have it.

Today instead of going to the gym I decided to stay home and just walk around the neighborhood and do my thing.  I get an extra half hour to sleep in that way, why not?

I started to walk with the intention of getting an hour in.  I’ve been doing couch to 5k on the elliptical, since I’m so heavy that I can’t run.  Or can I?  Well, it turns out that being in the presence of greatness only makes you feel bad about yourself if you make it that way.  Today, I decided that if that guy can do a freaking Ironman then I can run.  I can be inspired by that kind of dedication and tenacity and guts and I can at least try to run, right?

So I did.  I ran.  I am positive that it wasn’t pretty, but who cares, no one else is up that early.  I’m pretty sure it was barely faster than my walk, but dammit, I RAN.  I walked and I ran and I walked and I ran and walked and ran… 9 different times. 9 bloody freaking times. I didn’t stop until the app told me to.  I ran when I was supposed to run.  The running gods decided to have a good laugh and make sure that every time I approached a hill that it would be run time, and I still did it.

I weigh 282 pounds and today I ran and ran.  Sure I walked, but I ran and not only was it ok, it was fanfreakingtabulous.  No excuses, no telling myself that I can run when I weight less so that I don’t hurt my feet or my joints or whatever… I just went and did it.  It was a split second decision.  I turned on C25K so I’d make my walking pace more brisk with intervals and just started running to see if I could.  I could. So I did.  Then I did some more.  Kind of like Forrest Gump but without the great soundtrack. Hmmmm, now I need to figure out what that Doobie Brother’s song was Forrest ran to in the movie and add it to my playlist.

I am so thrilled with running today, I can’t even express it in words.  I’m thrilled.  Overjoyed.  I want to be able to trail run through the woods by this time next year, so that’s a big non-Everest goal for me that I dreamed up today.

The super nice Ironman man gave me his business card, personal phone number on the front and a list of electrolyte replacements to try on the back.  I’m going to need that contact information for sure, now that I’m a serious runner and will need to start doing runnery things.

Me, a runner, imagine that.