Absolutely GORGEOUS 82 degree day yesterday. Brlght blue skies, not a cloud around. I celebrated by studying all day and taking a running “rest” day. I have run 3 days in a row, and after a stress fracture in my femur a few years ago, I am very careful not to run too many consecutive days. What a bummer! But I went for a walk instead, which was almost as good. Almost.
There were of course a million people and their mom outside walking or running as well. I was jealous of every person that ran by. But I maintained my fast walk like a good girl!
I am, and always have been, awful about comparing myself to others. Especially when it comes to athletics. I have such a competitive drive, that when I am running or at the gym, I am constantly comparing myself to the other girls– do I lift more than her? Is my treadmill at a faster speed? Is my bike resistance higher? What is her back squat weight? Is she skinnier/fitter/stronger than me??
I hate that I do this. Really hate that I do this… One of my biggest struggles is when I see Collegiate Runners. I am just totally and completely envious and obsessed with them. I envy their strong, lean bodies, I envy their strict training schedule, I envy the access they have to nutritionists and coaches, the constant presence of other runners and “running talk”. I envy the miles they put in, the calories they burn, the strength they gain. I envy their mental toughness and perseverance. I envy their lifestyles.
I want nothing more than to look and be like them. I am disappointed when I look at my own body and see I am not as toned, stomach not as flat. I am angry when race times that I am proud of don’t even stand up with theirs. I am frustrated with my own food “limitations” I place on myself when I see them eating tons of food because they know (and I know) that they run 60+ miles a week and burn calories like a machine.
But I am not a Collegiate Runner. I do not have a coach looking over my shoulder. No one makes me go out and run a certain distance/time every day. I do not have the running support system of a team.
And because of this, I have a different toughness about me. I have the mental strength of someone who despite not having all the things Collegiate Athletes have, still gets out there and gets ‘er done.
I am just a girl who LOVES to run, who pushes herself as hard as she can, while trying to balance life. Running is what I love to do, but it is not ALL I do. So to compare myself to Collegiate Runners is not only self-destructive, but it is inaccurate. Our lives are not the same. We all have different lives, different stories.
All I can expect from myself is to do the best I can, when I can. Sometimes that means weeks that I run everyday, put in GREAT miles, run hard and happy. Other weeks, I maybe run 2 or 3 times, and struggle with every single mile. But that is ok, because I AM STILL A RUNNER. In my head, and in my heart, I am a Runner. And no title of “Collegiate” in front of that will make me any more passionate about it or make me any more ‘impressive’.
How can I compare myself to these girls? I do not know them. But I know me. Hi, I am Andrea. I am pursuing 2 masters degree, trying to work on a million little things in life that are far more important, like keeping God at the center, keeping the amazing relationship with my family and, getting my health under control. This is what matters.
No I am not a Collegiate Runner, but I am still a Runner. And that is what matters.
As I was going to bed last night, I read my daily Bible Verse that my phone sends me. It could not be more appropriate. Thanks God 🙂
“Judge not, and you will not be judge: condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven; give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.“
Did you guys run in College? Do you wish you did?
How do you cope with comparing yourself to other athletes?
What is your favorite breakfast food? I need some ideas…