My journey from low self esteem to running half marathons before breakfast

I’ve thought about writing a blog for some time.  I’ll start many posts but never finish them, second guessing what I am writing and why would anyone listen to what I have top say. I’m not funny!

But then what if I inspire one person? What if one person can relate to how I’m feeling or what I’m doing and they realise they are not alone? So what if no one ever reads a word I’ve written?

I’m a 33 year old woman from Tasmania who has always had dreams of living a full and fun life.  I moved to Melbourne at 19 and lived a wild and crazy life before chasing the sun to Brisbane at 28.  There’s have been years of heartache and hell, yet somewhere through all of that I discovered my love of health and fitness.

When I moved to Brisbane in February 2012 I was full of hope for a bright future. 3 weeks later I discovered my boyfriend had been cheating on me. I had left my friends and a job I loved in Melbourne to start fresh in his hometown. There was heartbreak and the pain of trying to work through and past infidelity all while he battled the demons of a drug addiction.

One morning I found a suspicious $440 receipt from a brothel from the night before.  I continued my commute to work but turned back around to go and confront him.  I felt so alone. I went along with his dodgy story of it being the same eftpos account as another bar run by the same company. My head was screaming – $440?  Exactly? Ok, I’ll play dumb.  Or was it denial?

My workplace wasn’t one that I enjoyed, the work didn’t excite me, I hadn’t made any friends there, and I knew that I had to resign and make something in my life right.

At the time it was all pain but now I can see the significance in these moments.

I applied for jobs and had interviews but had a real gut feeling about one that was 1km away from home.  It was the one I got and the one that I stayed with for the past 5 years and have just finished at recently.

 

One lunch break not long after I started working I went home.  The ex was there working from home and I couldn’t stand the sight of him on this day. I decided to take my 6 month old Staffy for a walk. He had other ideas.  Midday in Brisbane, 26 degrees and he wanted to run.  Watching the puppy paws splaying out like giraffe’s legs as we ran was hilarious. It was the most I’d laughed in a long time. We didn’t go far that day, however before this moment my running consisted of having the treadmill on 8.4 for 3 minutes before giving up.

That afternoon back at work was the most positive I’d been.  That run had woken something up in me that has formed the positive, driven person I am today.

I started running the dog on a 5.5km circuit whenever I felt the need to cry.  It became my outlet and still is today.  The constant cheating from my ex had broken my self esteem and I couldn’t look in a mirror without hating myself and finding flaws in every part of my body.

Slowly I began setting goals – I’d push myself doing sprints on the treadmill and tried getting faster and further going up to 6km, then 7km.

23 March 2013 I felt great and did my first 10km in 1 hour exactly.  I felt so accomplished and happy.  How amazing!

In 2015 I set the next goal to run 15km and smashed that midyear.  I had picked up a Women’s Fitness magazine and read a great article on how a office working woman just like me had done a half marathon.  Dare I dream?  If she could do it, so could I? 

I researched and found the Brisbane Marathon Festival. I found a plan online and tweaked it to my lifestyle and need for running therapy.  This was a life changing experience. I didn’t feel elation crossing the line like I thought I would, even though it was a massive PB.

The excitement and elation came from setting out the plan, being consistent with my training and accomplishing the goal.

The confidence that a simple run has given me is priceless.  I began seeing my self worth and took myself out of that volatile relationship. I started aiming high with my career again while keeping the balance between career and lifestyle.  I see my body as the wonderful machine that it is an fuel it accordingly.

Anyone can start running. Anyone can achieve these goals with the right plan, support and a dream.

Go ahead and get excited!!

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