Sunday, August 16, 2009

The Voices

"I am too old, I am too fat, I will never finish, I am too slow, I have no business being out here, I will never meet anyone, I am not worth it, I will never find achieve anything..."

Over and over in my mind today during my 10km race I kept hearing these same voices. They didn't stop me, or slow me down. For once I encouraged the self-doubt, just so I could run it into the ground. At first I hoped the the Ipod would drown them out, but soon the the voices got louder, and each time they did I sped up.

I am by no means a champion and I more than likely will not be winning my age group anytime soon but I am proud of the fact that I can wake up, put on my shoes and run 5, 10, 20kms. I am proud that I get better with age, that the more work I put into my running the better I get. I know that around the corner is the me that I strive for. I just have to keep outrunning those voices.

I was 360+ pounds a few years back, and I am not ready to call myself a speedo model yet (no one needs to see that), but I know deep down that I would rather have a body in shape than worry about the shape of my body.

It was a great run through 5km, on pace for my sub-50 minute 10km, than it got harder. I could feel the the lactic build up in my legs, I noticed the slight inclines, it got harder to breathe, and harder to drown out the doubt. At 7km, the Ipod was just not going to work anymore so I took it off and decided to face the doubts head on. It are these moments that I think of Dr. Sasha, who would never let me settle or get complacent in just being happy to achieve a goal. You have to think ahead to the next goal, the next kilometer, the next step, the next second. It allowed me to get back to basics, concentrate on my breathing and just run. I find that in any 5km, 10km, 1/2 marathon or full marathon that you come to a realization of what your limits are. You realize that you have taken out of your body all the capital the was built up during training and you have to decide if you are going to push your limits or not. Today, I was smiling and sprinting at the finish.

I am not Kenyan. I am not a natural runner. I wasn't born with speed. But I do have determination. Regardless of whatever speed you run at, or whatever your goals take some time to be proud of the journey and celebrate one more finish line. Personal best or not.