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Thursday, November 08, 2012

Here's the cold, hard truth:
When I run, I've got no swag, whatsoever.

It's like that pic that gets shared around -- the "What I Think I Look Like When I Run" and the "What I Really Look Like When I Run" photos?

I imagine myself to be...well, not a gazelle, but let's say, a sturdy field horse, admirably plodding along with determination and strength, quietly but surely getting the job done. I'm neither dainty nor delicate, but I do imagine myself to appear at least capable.

(And okay, maybe a little bit badass...)

But, the reality is that I'm an effing mess on the track. I've got NO game and I'm the farthest thing away from cool imaginable. Here's what I'm talking about:

When I catch my shadow running behind me, it's running really slow, man. Like, *really* slow. And what I envision as long, leggy strides are really short, little hops from my squat, little legs (thanks, Dad!). My iPod's usually on full blast, so I forget that when I run, I breathe really hard -- more gasping than panting -- and I'm a mouth-breather, to boot!

In the summer, I sweat A LOT (so much so that I bought a Halo headband to channel the water away from my eyes...and yeah, that pink, '80s-style Loverboy headband isn't helping my swag AT ALL).

In the winter, I'm finding that all that mouth-breathing leads to lots of mucous-y grossness that gathers around my mouth and nose (and oh yeah, it's totally visible, too, if you look at me for more than a second -- which you WILL do, because I'm running so effing slowly)!

Cold weather has also made me value warmth over style, so if you catch me at the track this weekend, you're going to see me in my cool-ass fuschia Nike tech shirt -- but it'll be unpleasantly paired with my teal-striped Target capri pants, with navy blue running shorts worn OVER them (because the capris don't have a pocket and I need a pocket for my mace)!

Pretty effin' hot, huh fellas?

So, yeah, my friends: on the track, it's true - ZERO SWAG.
Less than zero, even.
(Tip of the hat, Elvis Costello, I still love you...)


On the days when I *do* run, hours after I come home and take off the non-matching clothes and wash off all the sweat and the snot, and get in the car and go to work, my swag mysteriously returns...

...when I flex my aching leg muscles walking to the edit suites. As I walk, I'm mentally strutting, thinking about everything I accomplished before 8am...

...when I'm in the grocery store, when my muscles itch to run to the next aisle, even though that's the last thing my mind wants to do. My muscles just want to feel that stretch...

...when someone mentions my weight loss. On the outside, I keep it real, y'all -- but inside, I'm basking in the glory and patting myself on the back...

...and when I'm in the ladies room, you *know* that I'm checking out my own ass - not because it's so small, but because my pants are now SO BIG!

So, what's the takeaway from all this? It's simple:

Running still sucks*, but it's giving me my swag back** -- and that's made it all worthwhile!

*Yes, it sucks. For about an hour, three times a week.

**Between the hours of 7am and 5am only. 5am-7am are strictly NO SWAG zones.

Image belongs to: swagnotes Tumblr or fbcoverlover (not sure who made the original)
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Um, yeah... are you talking about my lack of swagger? My pace is glacial, my uncoolness epic, and yet it feels friggin fantastic! Sooooo had to let go of any semblance of vanity.

    2347 days ago
    This reminds me of the FRIENDS episode when Rachel and Pheobe go running in the park. Maybe you should give it up and run like Pheobe!
    2347 days ago
    My son told me the other day that I tried to jack his swag. So he calls me "Swagger jacker" this is so funny. Loverboy reference,"Everybody's working for the weekend." Could not resist.
    I llok a mess too.My clothing is so baggy,I have to run and adjust them as I am running. I breathe loudly ,but you, like me are getting it done.Loud and proud huh!

    2347 days ago
    Oh my gosh...LOVE THIS!

    2349 days ago
    Great post!
    2350 days ago
  • CHERRY666
    Oh, I love this entry! I sweat a lot, too, and it ain't pretty, but I know I'm working hard! Oh, and I'm a mouth breather, too. Really, I don't know how people can avoid that when running. I try to shut my pie hole when crossing paths with others, but honestly, sometimes I don't even care. I need my air! I'm sure that looks great. Ha.

    Anyway, I'm glad you're getting your swag back. emoticon

    2351 days ago
    You go gurl! Hey, if you aren't a mess during/after a workout you are doing it wrong so screw the lack-of-swag for a couple hours and work it the rest of the day!
    2351 days ago
    I go to Zumba straight from school twice a week. In my backpack this morning I tossed my baby blue Asics, and a pair of white socks with lime green stripes around the tops. My shorts are teal with black stripes, my tee-shirt is a shade of green that clashes entirely with my socks, and the straps from my hot pink sports bra will coordinate nicely with everything else I am sure. Oh, and last class I forgot a ponytail holder and had my hair tied up in a twist tie from a garbage bag. I am one classy broad.

    On the other hand, the one woman in my class who comes in her perfect little black capri workout pants and Lululemon top never looks like she is having very much fun, and the rest of us goofballs are laughing our butts off.
    2351 days ago
    Hahaha, I'm right there with ya! I noticed the other day that I was just dripping sweat and was like...what is this disgustingness!?!? Nobody else is sweating this much! Then I just realized that's because I'm doing it right for me, they're doing it right for them, and by sweating this much I'm just emptying my tanks to be able to drink my tons and tons of water for the rest of the day.

    Get it!
    2351 days ago
    LOVE IT!!!!
    Glad I am not the only one who doesn't look like a fitness model in a magazine.
    ...and I have My Little Pony wristbands, so yea, pretty sure I look oh so smooth running.
    2351 days ago
  • MIRAGE727
    The first thing I tell everyone when they are just getting into running is EMBRACE it! Let the addiction take you away! I'm an endorphin freak and when I give 100% in a 5K, I catch the E!
    As for the swagger, it's like the last scene from The Usual Suspects. Roger "Verbal" Kint is shown feet only, doing his gimp walk. Slowly it evolves into a power stride as he changes into Keyser Söze! Powerful!
    As you embrace the run, and start heading closer to your goals, the swagger takes form! I wish I had a video of my first 5K & my first Half Marathon. It shows the difference!
    Stay strong, focused, & embrace the run!
    2351 days ago
    Awww crap! I didn't realize I was supposed to look sexy when I exercise. I've got a couple of plain ol' t-shirts I switch out and a pair of sweat pants that are beginning to bag pretty bad. Before that, they were grossly hugging my every bulge and roll. I never shower before going to the gym and I never apply any make-up. I'm lucky if I happen to remember to wipe the goo from the corners of my eyes. I think I'm going for invisible. I might have pulled it off if I hadn't accidentally hit that poor fella in the crotch the other day as he was passing a bit too close.

    As far as 7:00 a.m. -- 5:00 a.m. swag? I think I know what your talking about. I'm still not pulling it off, but I have noticed a bit of swagger in my step. I'm beginning to forget what it felt like to walk when I weighed 300+ pounds. emoticon
    2351 days ago
    I love this!!!! Running is not as pretty as the motivation crap makes you think. It's messing, uncoordinated, and the whole snotty mucous thing, yeah I'm right there with ya. And the sweating?!? Yeah, I use to be embarrassed by the fact that I sweat like an animal but one day my sister ( who has the same "problem") said " I don't glisten like other girls I sweat, and I sweat liquid awesome" So yeah, we're just bad ass is all.
    2351 days ago
    Great blog...I bet you look amazing!
    2351 days ago
  • X5X52000
    Aside from the snots i just luv a woman who sweats when shes putting in the work! Don't worry about the swag in the process, but the end results!
    2351 days ago
    Wait... you're supposed to look good while you exercise? I've been doing it wrong this whole time! I sweat like crazy, am not graceful and I get really red in the face when I workout. Not cute but I don't care!
    2351 days ago
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