This blog entry is in participation with Take It and Run Thursday at Runner’s Lounge.
OK… So here is a top ten list of motivators for me. Your list may vary. Certain conditions apply. Not valid with any other offers. Void if prohibited. Blah… Blah… Blah…
- My children (being healthy enough to see them grow up and not be a burden to them)
- My father (didn’t take good care of himself and paid for it with his health. I don’t want to be him)
- Being a role model for my family by having a healthy lifestyle (my wife and 10 year old son have both started running)
- Challenging myself (a little better, a little faster each time)
- Having something to look forward to (the next race)
- Watching my waistline shrink (I had a LOT to give, but it’s still fun. I went from a 40 to a 33!!)
- Making new, like minded friends (I was tired of just “drinking buddies”)
- Trying new sports (I LOVE sports of any kind. Duathlon and triathlon are in my future… how cool is that? OH! …and adventure races… trail runs… organized mountain bike races…W00T!!)
- BYFO (Burn Your Face Off) hot wings at CJ’s. Best wings on the planet. I don’t even want to KNOW how many calories they contain. And I don’t care… as long as I run it doesn’t really matter (in moderation… of course).
- Guinness. ’nuff sed…
In the end it’s different for all of us. The bottom line is that you will NEVER do this until YOU decide it is the RIGHT THING to do. Other people, television infomercials, slick ads and Jenny Craig can tell you it is, but you will never DO it and STICK WITH IT until YOU accept it.
What finally pushed me over the edge and down the slope to a healthier lifestyle? After the bazillionth call from my mother to tell me of some new and potentially life threatening ailment my dad had been diagnosed with (he has been an invalid due to a stroke he suffered when he was 54… 17 YEARS ago), I was feeling kind of down and had wandered downstairs to take a shower. This usually involves being nakey… so I disrobed and finally, for the first time (I think EVER), I looked at myself in the mirror and SAW me. I am 5′ 7″ and at that point I was 240 pounds. I was 39. WAY to damn close to my dads age when he had his stroke and I KNEW in that moment that I was walking in his path. It also dawned on me that, as I peeked out the door with tears in my eyes at my two wonderful children playing in the next room, if I didn’t do something NOW and FOREVER, I would be dead before they graduated from high school.
That was August of 2006. It’s been a tough road. Numbers 9 and 10 on my list tend to cause me setbacks. I have a difficult schedule to manage with work. BUT. I committed and never looked back. I have lost 50 pounds. I have run 3 half marathons, 1 full marathon and numerous other races. And once I heal up, I will continue along this new path I have chosen. Because it is the right thing to do.