Wednesday, September 22, 2010

A Wow Moment

I had one of those "wow" moments today.  I ran in my company's annual 5K race and did very well (4th woman overall).  I was surprised and pleased.  But that wasn't my wow moment.

As I was walking back to the office, I realized - or a better phrase is that I fully internalized -- that my body is amazing.  Of late, I haven't been loving it as completely as I should.  In fact, I've been frustrated with it.  I've noticed that it works a little differently than it has in the past, that things have changed.  I have more wrinkles, etc. etc. etc.  (For context: I'm 37.) And yet, I ran this race and my body performed soooo well when I pushed it.  My wow moment was when I realized that I need to love my body more fully.  I need to stop obsessing over a line here and a sag there and dark circles.  Focus instead on all the really cool things this body does for me, like taking me on great adventures.  That's what I want to teach my niece, too. 


Alex Zorach said...

I think a lot of people struggle with looking at their body and getting caught up on negative things. Think about all the things about your body that work so well. I've often done that when recovering from some sort of frustrating injury; for myself, the toughest time has been when I've had some kind of constant pain or discomfort. I keep getting stuck thinking..."I'm hurting, this seems to be taking a long time to heal. I must be aging."

But these thoughts are really irrational. And it's really matter what age you are. I'm 30 for reference. I sometimes forget all the times when I was younger where I recovered from unpleasant things...I used to get the flu EVERY year, and I haven't had the flu since 2001. I used to get ear infections a lot, haven't had one since I was a kid. I had trouble sleeping for years as a kid. One of my teeth got horrible cavities and had to be pulled, now I haven't had a cavity in years. In many ways I'm in much better shape than I was 5 years ago, and then I was in better shape than 5 years before that.

When I think about all the things about my body that work well, I'm always astounded. We take so much for granted...think of all the muscles that don't ache...all the organs that you take for granted that do their job flawlessly day in day out.

Wrinkles are really silly too. One of my friends had a lot of wrinkles around her eyes at the age of 18, and she's always been absolutely adorable. I think it's because she is very emotive and expressive, and is probably moving her facial muscles a lot.


So, just writing to say that I really appreciated this post, I'm able to relate to it a lot. And glad you are focusing on the positive things! They always outnumber the negative.

Steph said...

Thank you, Alex!

parTea lady said...

Todays world does make aging gracefully (body image) a diffult thing. As a senior, I'd drive myself crazy if I focused on wrinkles, grey hair, etc. Instead I like to enjoy a body that still allows me to do fun things like Zumba, snorkeling, walking around a theme park for 7 or 8 hours with my grandsons, etc. I don't know if I "love" my body, but I'm working on it.

Congrats on your great 5K race.

Marlena said...

Wrinkles and sags are the badge of life. Our bodies are miracles. As complex as they are, it really is miraculous that they work so well, with so few glitches. Just think about breathing and all the tiny things that go into each breath we take. and yet we keep doing it, 15-20-30 times an hour.
It's wonderful that you ran so well!

Marilyn said...

What a great thing to learn at 37.

Kas said...

It's beautiful to read/hear that you are beginning to see yourself in the same way we have always seen you: amazingly wonderful! :)

Angela McRae said...

Congrats on not only a race well run but also on having such a great philosophy about it all! Very encouraging!

Get Natured said...

I love the mantra of a fellow blogger/runner- when she's having a hard time on a run, she tells herself, "you are so much stronger than you think!". So true! :-)