I think a lot of people assume that running comes naturally to people. That they just put on their shoes, fly out the door and bust out an easy 10 miles with no effort at all. And maybe for some, it does. Others, like myself....thats soo not the truth.
Just because I happen to LIKE running and do it A LOT, does not mean that its easy.
I think if running were easy for me, it wouldn't be so fun. I like the challenge. I like to push my limit and see what I'm capable of.
When I'm towards the end of a particularly hard or long run, I'll remind myself of how far I've come. 18 months ago, I seriously could not run for 1 minute straight. Dead serious! And now I've completed a half marathon. Hard work and determination DO pay off.
If you were to run with me, see me when I'm running or see me after I've run- I'd bet it would be pretty obvious how NOT easy it is for me :) I'm smelly, sweaty, beat red & exhausted. But I feel like those are badges of accomplishment. I feel like I've earned those things.
Whenever I'm doing a race, I always feel like the fattest and least fit person there. In reality, I'm totally not- but I just see it that way in my mind. I wish I didn't, and maybe that will change, but for now-its how I feel.
Even if you come in last place (and I have once, a very small 10k I was DEAD last) it doesn't mean that you've failed. It took me a long time to finally realize that. Just because you didn't run as fast as someone else, doesn't mean you've lost. You ran- you completed- you won. I've said it before- I am NOT fast. My 5k PR is 33:27 which is 10:48/mile average. Thats slow according to "racing" standards, but according to my own standards, fitness level and running background- thats pretty dang fast ;) The fact that I'm short and stumpy does NOT help with my speed but I finally decided speed just WASN'T that big deal to me anymore. I'd rather run my entire half marathon in May without stopping to walk, than to finish in a certain amount of time. Sure I'll have a goal time, but my over goal is just to RUN!
If you think you can't do something- challenge yourself. Go out of your comfort zone and prove to yourself that you ARE capable. It doesn't have to be running- it can be Zumba, yoga, weight lifting, cycling, pilates, elliptical- whatever....pick a goal and work towards it. Make it hard, but not impossible.
It all goes back to what your parents told you growing up- you can do anything you set your mind to.
I can promise you it won't be easy, but I can also promise you it will be worth it.