Sunday, July 8, 2012

Conversations With My Pre-Fitness Self

Something I missed while working this weekend: This video. Have you seen it? Of course you have, over four million people have viewed it so far.

This guy had me cracking up. We can obviously say our younger selves were pretty ridiculous. That isn't bad, it's just to say that there are many goofy/silly/stupid things I did as a kid, as I'm sure you did too. But then I think back to that less-inhibited self, and I imagine she'd look at me right now and also think I'm also pretty ridiculous.

I mean, let's start with the fact that I run long distances for fun. I used to dread meets in Cross Country and Track & Field. Now I actually pay to run in an event.

The vegetables I used to pick off my plate and hide in the napkin on my lap- I actually buy them, cook them, and eat them, without being threatened with a grounding or no dessert. Hell, I've even PLANTED some veggies to have something a little more local!

bell peppers, per the Little Miss' request

garden peas and wax beans, if I can manage not to kill them.

When I was younger I thought I'd be a cool grown up who stays up late and goes to concerts, movies, and awesome restaurants all the time. I stay up late, but it's because I can't wind down immediately after work. It didn't take me too long to realize all that other stuff costs too much money.

I vaguely recall proclaiming that I would shoot myself if I ever owned a pair of mom jeans. Then, the tapered leg came back into fashion via the Skinny Jean. And I have two pairs.

These are just a few things that have changed about my tastes and habits over the years. While my childhood self probably wouldn't have ever believed I'd give up sports of a lifestyle of drinking and lethargy, that unhealthy, lethargic self wouldn't have believed I'd ever turn around and get back into shape and then some. All of my PR's and more insane ambitious races have taken place well into adulthood, when the younger me used to dread hard workouts.

Me then:

I know, I don't look too bad. Wait for it....

Pasty, no clavicle definition, and good lord I needed better bras. It still gets better...
Before Instagram, there were disposable cameras. And double chins.
(These photos have been brought to you courtesy of cheese, gelato shops, beer, Nutella, and Kinderschokolade.)

Me now:

even with watermarks all over my face, still a nicer picture, I think!
(I still run on beer, though)

I'd like to think that if given the chance, I'd lay everything out for my younger, unfit self to prepare her for the life she had ahead of her. But then again... wouldn't that alter how things actually turned out? If I recall nothing else from how I was as a child and teenager, I know I was painfully stubborn. I think if the older me showed up to read me the riot act back then, I'd have rebelled even further!

Let's say I could just tell myself one thing- I think it would be not to waste the gift of fitness. It took me a long time to realize that I could ever enjoy running, let alone get kind of good at it. I think if I had pushed myself harder earlier on, knowing I could then better capitalized on the fitness gains that seemed to come naturally from pregnancy and early parenthood (yay extra blood cells!), I might be even faster now.

But, I have time, so I'm not going to obsess over what was or what could have been. I'm pretty damned proud of myself. And if you've gone through any fitness transformation - no matter how large or small - you should be, too. It can be very easy to sit around, regretting not making certain decisions or changes sooner, but you can't see what's in store for you if you're only ever looking in the rear view mirror.

Head up. Eyes forward. Just. Keep. Pushing.

If you could take a trip back to the past, what age would you visit yourself at, and what would you tell yourself?

1 comment:

Teamarcia said...

It's ironic, but when I was my most unfit, I was heavily into organic gardening. Too bad I was also into chips and cookies and sitting on my behind. I'd tell my former, fatter self to take risks and never say never.