Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New Year’s Resolutions

     Well, today is January 3rd. I’ve always toyed with the idea of making New Year’s resolutions, but I never actually have. I think it’s because I didn’t want to become part of the large group of people who fail at them. According to The Guardian, a paper out of the United Kingdom, 78% of people fail to uphold resolutions. They say the ones who have succeeded had five major differences – they broke their goal into smaller steps, rewarded themselves for each step, told their friends about their goal, focused on the benefits of achieving their goals, and kept a diary of progress.

     I’ve seriously considered making a weight-loss centered goal (who hasn’t?) but I’m tired of focusing on the number on the scale. Frankly, it depresses me, especially when I'm doing the right things and the numbers don't change. Then I saw this video – it’s long, but I promise it’s worth it:


     My mind was blown. Particularly around the 3:58 mark. Even if I don’t reach a certain number on the scale, I’m still improving my health and overall quality of life. The number on the scale is not the be-all, end-all. And yeah, I’m sure that tons of people could have told me that, and probably have. But everyone needs their own wake-up call.

     So I started thinking about things that I wanted to do but never have. One of them is run a 5K. I’ve been good friends with runners for all of high school and college. I was a thrower on the track & field team, but the most I’d run on a regular basis was a half-mile warm up. I kind of started to believe that I “wasn’t built” to be a runner, and I never would be a runner. And while it’s true that there are people who are naturally born runners, who are just better than others, it’s also true that if you work for something, you can achieve it. I guess I just realized that the reason I can’t run a 5K is because I told myself I couldn’t. I didn’t have great self-esteem growing up. I’m starting to find some now, at 22, but it’s been a long road. And this is part of my process. I want to show myself that I CAN.

I’m signing up for the St. Patrick’s Day 5K through Hagerstown.

     I have 11 weeks to train for this. Luckily, I have good friends who agreed to train with me, so we’re going to do it together. I also have my runner friends offering support and answering questions like “do I really need to buy socks that aren’t cotton?!” and there are forums where I can get support. I’m using the Get Running app to keep track of my progress, which follows the Couch to 5K running program,  which takes you from couch potato to 5K runner in 9 weeks.

What are your New Year resolutions? If you’re looking for one, I’d love to have you join the 5K with me!

By Kayla Murphy

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