2021 is wrapping up soon! The end of the year feels like I’m reading the last chapter in a book. Sometimes I’m thrilled with the outcome, and other times I’m honestly a bit disappointed. Regardless of my feelings, I reflect and think about how I want my new year “book” to be. What kind of story do I want to “read” or create next year, and how can I improve the ending?
It can be hard to shut off the powerful list-checking part of my brain, to jump off the busy hamster wheel of day-to-day life and honestly ask myself, “am I happy”? Running is one of the times I can often turn off the noise and reach that part of my mind that offers more profound thoughts.
During the last few runs I’ve taken, I’ve thought a lot about how the past 2 years have been, and I’d love to know if you can relate. I personally took a break from running. I know, I hate to admit this, but I did. I found myself enjoying my slippers, blanket, coffee, and wingback chair for more extended periods in the morning rather than running. I didn’t really strength train either. I continued to enjoy my large athletic breakfasts, sugary creamer in my coffee, and a regular glass of wine while making dinner.
This seemed to be a much-needed break after 45 years of always trying to be in the upper percentile of my class, life, and business. Although this cocoon of comfort caused me to gain weight, lose muscle mass and stamina, it did help me figure a few things out about myself.
I am a perfectionist, and I’m not sure why I put so much pressure on myself. All of the changes with Covid, my oldest daughter leaving for college, and not having a regular routine was what I needed to break my “perfect” streak.
The extra time forced me to get to know myself a bit more. I bought a pile of self help books and dove deep. I learned that my enneagram is a 3, I suffer from body image issues, and that striving for perfection is NOT a good thing, to name a few.
I also learned that I like it when I have more muscle and energy and feel stronger. AND that I love deliciously different foods, chocolate, coffee, and wine. I’m working on finding the perfect (oops!) balance of having and enjoying it all.
Running & lifting weights are 2 things I know very well. I chose to commit to these consistently again a few months ago and feel more muscle, energy, and clarity. I’m also still enjoying food, chocolate, coffee, and wine but being much less indulgent about it.
I was worried about writing this because I feel the need to be the PERFECT example as a physical therapist and running specialist. Well, I hope I don’t disappoint you, but I’m nowhere near being perfect, and that makes me truly happy.
Cheers to you, your family, and your storybook ending!
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