Early 2007, I graduated high school. I carried a 3.87 GPA, had won more speech and debate awards than I could count, earned the prestige of being the “Best German Student” in my class and absolutely hated myself. I weighed 260 pounds, had a 26 minute mile and for my freshman and sophomore years, was easily the most hated person in my P.E. class. See, I had this instructor who made us a simple deal at the beginning of the year: if everyone in the class could run a sub-12 minute mile, we wouldn’t have to run the mile in her class ever again. However, if anyone was still running, everyone had to run. Ergo, I listened to, “Come on, it’s not that hard.” “Just do it.” “If only you’d . . . .” “Nope. Keep running. We’re still waiting on her.” every week for two years. I never did manage a sub-12 minute mile in high school and I hated every minute of P.E. Come to think of it, I hated every minute of organized exercise up until about 4 months ago. I’ve fallen into the “running addiction,” somehow, and I not only like running, I look forward to it every day.
Today, I did something I quite honestly believed I was incapable of doing. I did something more than 30 people I went to school with thought I would never do. I have finally, 9 years after my last P.E. class, met my P.E. Instructor’s challenge. I have successfully ran a sub-12 minute mile (10:54!!!!!). Not only that, I maintained the pace for an additional 2.5 miles.
I am, quite simply, proud of myself. Take that, negative voices from my past. I’ve lost over 100 pounds, systematically built both strength and speed, and have finally bested a mental demon concerning my utter inability to complete a simple 4 laps around a track.