Try Hard Things Interview
Happy Friday! Earlier this week Seth and Chris over at the Try Hard Things podcast featured me on the Instagram page. You can check that out here:
Seth and Chris are both triathletes and podiatrists. They challenge themselves to try hard things through endurance sports and that has helped them cultivate tools to overcome life's challenges. I am sure many of us endurance athletes can relate 🙋♀️. Which is why Seth and Chris started Try Hard Things to give endurance athletes a platform to share their stories and hopefully encourage and inspire each other in the process.
I was honored that they asked me to share my story in endurance sports. I don't feel like my story is particularly special, but I hope that it can help someone. I know I have been encouraged and inspired by so many athletes who share their stories online. Here is our interview:
What’s your story with trying hard things in endurance sports?
Endurance sports has always been a part of my life. When I was 6 years old, I started swimming year-a-round and continued through high school. In my early 20’s, I had graduated college, was working, and just “adulting.” Like many people, I found myself overweight for the first time in my life and using food to deal with my emotions. I did not like what I saw when I looked in the mirror or how I felt. I was also horribly out of shape from not working out since high school. I had tried to start running a few times, but it was SO HARD. I would just stop. When my husband and I got engaged, our upcoming wedding gave me the motivation I needed to make some changes.
I decided to sign up for a half marathon near our wedding date as a goal to work toward. My sister-in-law (who is a lifelong runner) agreed to train for and run the half marathon with me. My first training runs were only 2 miles long and I had to take walking breaks, but I made it a lot farther having someone to run with. We trained over the next 4 months and finished the half marathon! I had fell in love with running during the process. I immediately wanted to see if I could run a full marathon and my running “journey” has just progressed slowly from there. Over the last 11 years, I have taken my half marathon time down to 1:29:29 and I just broke 3 hours in the marathon last month. Why you try hard things?
Someone recently asked me what breaking 3 hours in the marathon qualified me for and my answer was, “Nothing.” Then they asked me, “So why did you want to do it?”
I try for hard goals just for the sake of seeing if I can do it. I am not trying to please anyone else. I love the process of training hard and pushing myself. I am just trying to do the best in a sport I enjoy. How does trying hard things help you in life?
Since I started running, I feel much healthier physically and emotionally. I love starting my day off with a run! Even if the rest of my day goes terribly, or I accomplished nothing else, I got my run in and I can feel good about that. I have always thought negatively about myself and lacked self-confidence. My lack of self-confidence as a child, manifested into an eating disorder as a teenager and young adult. I went to a lot of therapy to help me with my eating disorder. Therapy was helpful at points, but for me, nothing helped me overcome my eating disorder as much as running. When I started running, I appreciate for the first time, how much my body is capable of and I appreciated the fact that I was healthy enough to go for a run. I don’t think I will ever consider myself fully “recovered” from my eating disorder because it is constant work, but my mindset has shifted completely. The fact that I can appreciate how far my legs can carrying me or that I can think of food as fuel to do an activity I love, is light years away from where I was 11 years ago. I am thankful to have the health and ability to run almost every day.
Thank you for reading. I touched on a sensitive topic, so please know if you are struggling and want to talk, reach out. Sometimes it is easier to talk to someone a little removed from your own situation.
Stay healthy and have a good weekend.
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