Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Remember Your Victories, or "From Russia with Love"

I'm pretty good at owning my failures.  When I screw up at work, which is rare, I take accountability for fixing the problem.  Now that I'm completely out of shape, I recognize that there are no excuses.  I'm the one who didn't work hard enough.  I'm the one who didn't eat right.  And while I'm not so great at fixing those things, I am really, really good at kicking myself when I'm down and feeling like a complete loser compared to where I was a little over two years ago.

And yet, one positive thing that's happening within my little Brian brain recently is that despite the pain and struggles (lots of compartment syndrome symptoms on my last two runs), I'm starting to think of myself as a runner again, and I think that's somewhat I'm important.  But I also want to do a better job of owning my successes.  I may not be anywhere half-marathon or marathon shape, but I still ran two of each.  Those accomplishments are not taken away from me.  I don't say that so that I can rest on those laurels, but to remind myself of what I accomplished once, what I can still be proud of, and what I hope to accomplish again.

Shaun White lost in his bid for a third-straight Olympic gold medal in the snowboard half-pipe tonight.  They don't take away his gold from Torino or Vancouver.  He's still the greatest-ever in his sport, and indeed probably the only one from his sport that a lot of Americans can even name. 

I am not comparing myself to Shaun White.  He finished fourth at the Olympics.  I suck at running right now and would need some walk breaks to finish a 5K.  But those medals, from Virginia Beach and Philadelphia, they are still mine. I want to run to those distances again, and I'm going to work to get back to racing shape and to my goal weight, but even if I never run those distances again, those moments -- those successes of which I am proud -- they are part of me and they can't be taken away.  

I think it might help me to occasionally remember that.

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