A Real 10K and Courtney's Best First Day
Irene and I hit the walking trail last night with a goal in mind: A real 10K. Yes, I'm still sore about thinking one thing and finding out another about the actual distance of the trail, but I have no one to blame but me. I should have been a little more diligent in finding the accurate length a long time ago. We talked and walked, quickened our pace, then realized we were pushing a little too hard if we really planned on doing 6.2 miles in one stretch.
What started out as a walk in the cool night air quickly became a real workout as we approached 3.5 miles. We were no longer cool. We decided to stop at our vehicle for some water before continuing when we made a crucial mistake: We sat down. We enjoyed our water and realized just how wonderfully comfortable the seats in our van can feel. And that's when I broke. “You know we've completed a little more than a 5K already, it wouldn't be too bad if we called it a night.” Irene just looked at me with that look that says I can't believe what I'm hearing. I knew I had to be a little more convincing. “Listen, I'll explain in tomorrow night's blog that it was late so we cut it short, no harm, we have plenty of time in the future for 10K's.” And then she simply said “we can do this, we're over half way there, we can't stop now.” Instead of trying to counter with another wonderful excuse to stop short, I chimed in “very true, and I really don't want to report that we cut another workout short for any reason.” Seriously, think back...How many times have you read in these writings “we planned on a 5K, but ended up doing a hard two?” Or “we set out to do a 10K, but settled for a 5K instead.” Too many times, that's how many.
So we put down the water bottles and set out under the stars to finish what we started. We occasionally studied the Northeastern sky expecting to be wowed by the meteor showers, but no such luck. We did witness a bunch of high school kids toilet papering the entire front lawn of the school across the street. They were being really loud and that's what probably got them busted. As we made our way around on the fifth mile we noticed the police there and they were making those kids clean up every last piece of toilet paper.
That last 1.2 miles was killer. The balls of our feet were really hurting. The structure of our feet- the muscles, the bones, all of that was fine, it was the balls of our feet that were really hurting. We were pushing through anyway. And after a little complaining about “my aching feet,” we crossed the imaginary finish line with a wonderful feeling of accomplishment. We did it. It was officially the furthest either one of us had ever walked in one stretch. 6.2 miles, a real 10K.
Thank you for all of the comments about last night's blog titled “Scott's Story.” I did hear from Scott today in an e-mail after he read all of your comments. Here's what he said: Please tell your readers I appreciate all the positive comments and well wishes. As I told you before, I'm not much of a blog reader (I'll keep reading yours), and most definitely not a blog writer, so please tell the few that asked that I won't be writing a blog anytime soon. You and I will keep up with each other and you can update them on my progress if you'd like. Keep up the good work. I look forward to reading daily and seeing you and your family's continued progress.
Scott and I will certainly keep in touch. I plan on taking him up on the workout offer real soon too. And I will absolutely give occasional updates on his progress. As I re-read his story today I thought about how he immediately kicked it into high gear. There was no time to waste because his life absolutely depended on his consistent effort. He wasn't backing down for a second, it was just too important. That's what I mean when I write about making this one of the most important things you've ever done. Defend the integrity of your journey as if your life depended on it. Give it that level of importance and it will make it almost impossible to fail. And really, with all of the horrible consequences of morbid obesity, your life really does depend on it.
Courtney's first day as a junior in high school was today and thanks to her dramatic progress so far, it turned out to be one of the best she's ever had. I was just going to relay what she told me about today, instead I asked her to write out her experience so I could include it in tonight's edition. Courtney's first day back at school after a summer of continued weight loss success, in her own words:
Today was the first day of school, the first day of my Junior year! It was unlike any other first days of school, my confidence was the difference. Everyone today DID notice my weight loss over the summer and over the past year, and DID feel the need to say something. I got probably 10+ compliments today. The feeling I had is something I've never felt on a first day of school, it was totally not like me. I felt like a whole new person. Being self-conscious at school is one of the most uncomfortable feelings, I'm just glad I never have to go through that again. Some of the differences were simple and some were drastic. For example, usually when I walk up to the 3rd floor for one of my classes I feel sweaty! And out of breath! Today after walking up to the 3rd floor with ease, I wasn't sweaty or the slightest bit out of breath. Then the next thing I noticed was fitting into the desk a lot better than I did freshman and sophomore year! The desk at the high school can really make someone feel uncomfortable if your overweight, cause the sizes of some of them can be a really tight squeeze. Not today! I fit in every single desk as if it were the easiest thing in the world. I had plenty of room between the desk and myself. It felt amazing. Last but seriously not least was the way my social skills improved 100%. I don't feel awkward and ugly when I talk to people. I feel confident and pretty. So just overall, losing weight has really made a difference in my high school experience so far! There's no way I'm going back to my old habits. I could get use to this amazing feeling, and it just makes me so excited for these next two years of my high school career. Can't wait!
Out of all we've conquered along the way, that right there is the most important accomplishment to me. Amber and Courtney both understand what this journey means to them on a physical AND most importantly, a psychological level. The transformation that takes place within is far more dramatic than any “before” and “after” shot.
My beautiful wife started her very own blog today. I encourage you to check out the incredibly inspiring messages that she's committed to sharing at http://www.livinlarge09.blogspot.com/ She'll provide a different perspective of this road we're traveling. There are many milestones, successes, and developments ahead---and reading about them from her viewpoint will be very interesting. I sincerely hope you add her to your blogroll or save the address in your favorites if you're a non-blogger.
Day 332 was a smashing success. I skipped all of the details of the day because this is already a really long post. So I'll head to bed feeling fantastic. Thanks for reading, I sincerely appreciate your support. Goodnight and...