And By “Today” I mean “Yesterday.”

Man. Today.
Today was a bad day that involved bad news that led to more bad news that led to me hyperventilating into the phone asking me husband to talk me down from a panic attack.
Today had the potential to break me.
But it didn’t.
Because today I took all of the fear, frustration, negativity and used it as fuel to do something I’ve not yet been able to do.
Run 3.11 miles.
I ran 5k.
When I was 237 pounds I couldn’t walk for 5 minutes on the treadmill. Everything hurt. I couldn’t breathe. I felt so pathetic. I would cry, right there on the treadmill. Tears of frustration, of shame, of anger. I’d leave the gym feeling like a failure. I wanted to give up many times.
I’ve kept with it, even though the weight loss results have been painfully slow. I’ve kept going because with each workout, I felt a little stronger. With each new milestone, I felt more confident. I felt more energetic. I felt more… capable.
Of anything and everything.
I want to say this to anyone reading who is where I was a year ago.
You are capable. Capable of running. Capable of losing the weight. Capable of pushing your body to do amazing things.
I know from experience that when you’re overweight, people love to tell you how “you’re doing it wrong.” And most times, they are demeaning in their tone and cruel with their words.
I know what it feels like to be severely overweight. I understand how hard it is to get up and move. I understand why you want to give up. But please, don’t give up on yourself.
Start small. Start slow. Five minutes on the treadmill. And if you can go another five, then do it. Don’t beat yourself up for not doing more than you think you should be doing. Do what you can, but push yourself a little bit more each time. When you think you want to quit, push yourself for 15 more seconds.
When you’ve done what you can do, be proud of yourself for doing it. Don’t worry about what you *should* have or *could* have done. Revel in what you did. And promise yourself to do it again tomorrow.
One year ago, I would have never believed that I could run 3.1 miles. Hell, I wouldn’t have believed that I could run.
I can and I did.
And it feels better than I ever imagined.

47 thoughts on “And By “Today” I mean “Yesterday.”

  1. Chibi Jeebs

    *SO* much great stuff here – I think I need to bookmark it so I can come back and read it every time I feel like I just can’t.
    Congrats on the 5k, too! Awesome! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Suzy Q

    This is good. Good for you to have done; good for me to hear. Actually, it’s freaking AMAZING that you did a 5K. I can’t even imagine myself doing that…yet.

  3. teriboberry

    Delurking to say – you go girl! and thanks for the inspiration. I’ve been on the fence about going to the gym at lunch and because of you, I’m leaving right now!
    I love your writing and photography. Thanks so much for sharing.

  4. Chissa

    congrats on the good stuff!!
    and I agree on the yuck stuff~~
    i’m glad i found your blog!

  5. Mary

    Good job! I am currently working on the Couch-to-5K program and was able to run for 12 straight minutes the other day and felt AMAZING! I can’t even imagine how amazing I will feel when I can run a 5K! I am slow, but I am doing it!
    I am also on the losing track, with 35 pounds lost this year. Your story has been so inspirational to me, and I thank you for sharing it!

  6. Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing]

    You’re so right on so many levels.
    I started Couch to 5K last week, and I’ve had an unfortunate set-back with a bum knee, but I know I’ll get right back in to the program because missing today’s run actually made me sad. Which, if you’d told me 2 weeks ago that I’d miss exercising, I’d have stuffed a donut in your face.

  7. ella

    You should sign up for the next 5K in your area!
    Talk about a rush… man…. amazing.

  8. amanda

    You! I am so confident in all the “I can’t believe its” you still have ahead of you. You are a living, breathing (running) inspiration.

  9. jessica b

    Y, as I’ve said before, you’re such an inspiration to me. and I intend to be able to do the same thing in the next year. Knowing that you are able to do it with your additional hurdles makes me realize that there is NO reason why I can’t do it too!
    thank you, thank you, thank you!!

  10. Misti

    First of all, congratulations on running a 5k! That’s amazing. Second of all, thank you so much for this post! I really need this right now, in fact, I’ll probably print it out so I can read it over & over again. You are such an inspiration, in so many ways.

  11. Jean

    I am where you were. I have been told by my dr that I am pre-diabetic. I have never been this heavy in my life. I am disgusting and I hate looking in the mirror every day. I’ve been walking 20 minutes every morning 5 days a week. But I still see the horror that is my body with no change.
    I am very proud of you and think you are an amazing and inspiring woman!

  12. Beth B.

    Yeaahhh girl! You rock! That is so awesome! Thank you for sharing your success! I’m so hpapy for you!

  13. eli

    I am tearing up — I will (start again, I WILL!!) — and I’ll be back in a year to tell you where I am, how far I have come. Because I am SICK of hearing about your successes and not having any of my own! ๐Ÿ˜‰ KIDDING! I really love your writing, likely been reading ALL the time you have been writing…and am SO very excited for you! Live, Y! live — as only you can — keep sharing your life here, but RUN RUN RUN!!! ๐Ÿ˜€ I am sitting here with my sz 16 pants unzipped, wishing they fit well, that I could breath in them…shrink out of them. But it takes work, and I’ve been listening to that devil on my shoulder for too TOO long.

  14. Shannon

    AWESOME!!! Good for you!! Last year, my Dad hit his 100 lbs. lost goal. I understand your struggle and also your joy as you reach your goals!! I’m so happy for you :o)

  15. al

    I just got on the machine today and could only do 10 mins but you know what? That’s 10 more mins than I did the day before.
    Good job Y!

  16. JenniferB

    I am sorry you had a terrible day — but so grateful that you continue to write and inspire me. I am so unhappy with with health/weight/size and I have felt especially down about it this week and to be able to come to your blog and read about your very real success is so inspiring! I’m so tired of my knees hurting when I walk and everything else and how it/I bulge that I just need to do it — please keep doing what you are doing!

  17. Val

    First, congrats to you – that’s awesome!
    Second, thank you so much for this post. I needed the moral support and reminder. I’ve been doing good, I’m down 12 lbs, but I have been losing my motivation lately, feeling guilty when I do slip up and eat crap or skip going to the Y. And even though I know it’s okay, that it happens, that I can get right back up and back at it – the guilt – you know? It just sits in your craw and tries to make you feel bad.
    Anyway, thanks. I needed this.

  18. Nancy P

    Yeah, exactly what Chibi Jeebs said. Although I really don’t think I can. I have lost all momentum with my exercise and feel like crap all the time now. Somehow, someway though I know I just HAVE to.
    Thank you for writing this!

  19. Kyla

    You are SO inspiring, Y. I know how difficult this has been for you, but I am so impressed with your dedication and hard work. You are amazing.

  20. Rebecca Grace

    Wow — you are so amazing, how you can not only conquer your own demons, but inspire so many people you haven’t even met to conquer their own. I’ve been dealing with my own body issues lately; now that the warm weather is here I’ve discovered that none of my shorts from last year fit, I’ve gained a few pounds, gravity is being unkind, etc. And it feels like a losing battle because I’ve already cut out all the junk food, desserts, treats, etc. and STILL the damned scale goes up instead of down. But I’m always “too busy” to exercise, and feel like the best I can do on the treadmill isn’t good enough to make a difference anyway, so why bother when there’s so much other stuff I need to do.
    I just had to tell you that you have INSPIRED ME today and I am going to go right upstairs to that treadmill and take it one step at a time. THANK YOU!!

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