that four-letter word
Monday, April 26, 2010
No, not that word. The other one. Starts with "c". C-A-N-'-T.
It has occurred to me that I have used the word "can't" far too often. I "can't" go to the gym because I don't have time; I "can't" eat healthy because it's too expensive/time consuming/whatever; I "can't" do this or that particular activity because I'm too big/my joints hurt/I'm too old/the stars aren't aligned today/whatever. I'm not sure just how I've managed to come so far down this road, but it seems that I have become afraid to try--it's far easier to make excuses for why "I can't".
Over the past few months I've read lots of people's blogs and message board posts where they discussed how, despite large amounts of weight to lose, they went from being couch potatoes to dedicated runners, some even training for marathons. And although I admired their commitment and energy, there was always something that my mind could come up with that made their circumstances different and would explain why I couldn't do the same thing. Yet, I found myself covertly watching others at the gym as I walked on the treadmill and they ran, and I wondered--"could I possibly ever do THAT??" Having not even tried to run in years, I actually didn't believe I even knew how. Or that I would hurt myself in even trying. Or fall off the treadmill and humiliate myself.
Recently, I bought a membership to the fitness centre at my workplace. I work the night shift, and decided it would be a good use of my time to use the fitness centre for a workout during my break time. So there I was one night, all alone in the fitness centre. No one to watch me fall off the treadmill (on the down side, no one to help me up or call 911 for the ambulance either!) No one to watch my flab jiggle, or see me gasping for breath and think "what the heck does she think she is doing?". And instead of keeping up the brisk walk I had started, my hand reached over to the speed adjustment on the treadmill and increased it--and next thing you know, there I was, jogging. Me! Now, I didn't last long and I didn't go fast. I managed to jog for about 1 minute at a time and then had to slow down to a walk again, and my fastest speed was about 4.2 mph. I was elated!
Last night after dinner, I invited my 18-year-old daughter out for a walk around the block with me. As we started out, she commented on how I was walking at a brisker pace than usual. I said, "hey, maybe one of these days we'll be jogging instead of walking!" Her response--"okay, let's go!" Me--"I CAN'T jog on a full stomach!" Her--"just a light jog.." and off she trotted. And I followed. And guess what--I can. We did 20 minutes of alternating brisk walking with slow jogging. My knees hurt, and I was gasping and wheezing (note to self, use inhaler before exercise next time, and carry it with me). But, I did it. I CAN.
So that's one 4-letter word it's time to lose.