I just want you to know

When talking to people about fitness, I often hear things such as:

  • “I’m really bad at running”
  • “I don’t know what I’m doing at the gym”
  • “I’m just not an athletic person”
  • “I could never run for that long”
  • “I wish I was a runner”
  • “How do you do it?”
  • “I could never eat clean, I love ____ too much”

The list goes ON and ON. Notice the theme here is people who blame their lack of activity on their own perceived lack of ability. My friend even once told me that she was incapable of doing something because she “knew her limits.”

There are obviously a few things wrong with statements like these. 1. You don’t have to like running because I do. 2. You should only compare your abilities today to your abilities yesterday. 3. If you want (and I mean REALLY WANT) to do it…you can do it. 4. I am a runner because I decided to be a runner, you can be one too. (Or anything else you choose to be for that matter). 5. You have NO FREAKING CLUE what your limits are.

I think people forget that fitness bloggers and personal trainers have the same struggles that you do. Just because I workout a lot, and just because I like to help other people workout, does not mean that it comes easy, and certainly does not mean that I have some innate ability for athleticism (quite the contrary actually).

Evidence!

  • I tried playing soccer at the age of…4? And I quit because I “didn’t like to sweat.”

#proof hahah

  • I never played a sport ever again. I Irish danced for a few years, and did some aerobics in grade 10/11 gym class, but that was it.
  • I ate whatever I wanted. Think poutine, raw cookie dough, pizza, cookies, ice cream. (No my parents did not feed me this, but when I made my own decisions– these were them).
  • In university, my housemates and I drank (a lot) and went out probably around 3 times a week. After leaving the bar, I would walk into the poutine place, where the owner knew me, and she would say “poutine extra cheese?” And I’d be like “hells ya.” I gained a good 25lbs that year.
  • I tried joining a gym once, and all I did was jog on the treadmill, and then I would wander around aimlessly lifting 5lb weights.

Remember this? That before picture was taken about 3 months after I joined the gym…

  • The first time I went for a run (just over 3 years ago), I did run/walk intervals for maybe 10 minutes. When I finished, my face was completely green, and I thought I was going to toss my cookies. I had to sit down and put my head between my legs to keep it down. I think this is what happens to all of those people who have told me they “aren’t good at running.” If I had based my predicted running future on that run, I’d still be on the couch.
  • When I look back at my first ever half marathon training schedule, it shows that it took me 1:09 to run 9.6km. My 10k PR is now 48:12. Did I ever think I would get there? No chance.

My first training schedule from February 2010.

  • When I ran my first half marathon, I thought that was the be all, end all for me. I felt like I would have to wait a lifetime to gain the endurance to run a full marathon– I, like my friend, felt like I “knew my limits.” Attempting a half was crazy enough. As you probably know, 11 days ago, I ran a full marathon.
  • I’ve never had a personal trainer. I taught myself how to workout. I watched 1 million YouTube videos on proper form, and off I went!
  • When I first started eating clean, the idea of eating vegetables with every meal made me feel queasy. It used to be a good day if I ate 1 vegetable total, and I counted the tomato sauce over my giant bowl of white pasta with a side of bread and butter. Now I think of my veggies as medicine, and I crave them if I don’t get enough.

I know right now this post seems like an essay about tooting my own horn, but that’s not the point, I swear.

So, what is my point?

The point is, I don’t have any healthy living superpowers. I am no different than anyone else who struggles. Some days I wake up and I think about deleting this blog, deleting my Instagram, my Twitter, and my Facebook fitness contacts. Some days I think it would just be easier not to know about this whole fitness world. Some days it is draining, and some days I want out. But I don’t quit because I love my life, I love my family, and I love myself. I, and everyone I love, deserves the healthiest version of me. I spend my time, lots of it, trying to help other people understand that they do, too.

It is not easy to live a healthy life, there can be days of frustration, fatigue, and lots of criticism. But one day, I woke up and made this decision, and I have to continue to make it everyday. You can too, if you want. I am no better than you for living this way. I am no better than you because I like to run. Don’t worry about what I, or anyone else is doing. I just want you to know that you are the only one holding yourself back. If there is something that you truly want to do, decide to do it. Decide, and commit, every day; and you will amaze yourself.

 

Danielle

xo

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. Ohhhh I am so, so, so glad I found your blog because THIS IS ME. Haha everything in the beginning of this post is things I have said for all my life up until probably like, yesterday. This post is amazing. Thank you, thank you.

    • Danielle says:

      You are most welcome.
      Run with it, girl! (Literally or figuratively, hah).

  2. YAY! So wonderful that you wrote this! I have friends who say the same thing to me! Having once worked up to running several miles at a time, I know I can do it again (my first half is in Sept), and at times I need to remind myself that I CAN do it. This really gave me a confidence boost and I hope will do the same for your other readers. So happy we became sparkbuddies way back when! xo

  3. YES so true!! Love this!

  4. Ericka Ho-sang says:

    FANTASTIC post, you continue to amaze me daily. Love it!

  5. LOVE this post Danielle! I remember the days I used to think I could never “eat clean” or ” train mean” or even come CLOSE to “living a healthy life” to include regular fitness, eating well, sleeping enough and balancing it all with social time. And you’re totally right, if you make the decision to just do it – it will come. It requires effort and the conscious decision to make a change but it’s possible for everyone and you just have to want it. I still have bad days, I still eat things that aren’t “healthy” or skip a workout because “I’m tired,” but I get right back on that saddle and continue in the journey 🙂 you’re an inspiration love! Thanks for writing that post! Xoxo

  6. Thank you for writing this. I needed to read it. What a motivator.

  7. I love you. That is all.
    But I won’t lie that when I first read the title of the post, I started singing that Backstreet Boys song. Look it up. #thebest #bsbFOlife

  8. i love this and it’s 100% true. people forget that runners, athletes, fit people aren’t born that way, they are made! made through hard work and dedication! we all started at point zero – couldn’t run, could barely lift; but with time, we all got better because we pushed harder and stuck to it.

    what it boils down to is how much you want it. if you want it bad enough, you will find a way to do it and achieve your goals.

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