“I believe in redefining my impossible.” I read this on the Fitness Goddesses’ Facebook page this morning. It reminded me of how far I’ve come… and made me giggle a little (but we’ll get to the giggles in a bit.)
Three months after I first started running, my friend Phoenix had to drag me through my first 5K. My arms were tired. My legs hurt. And I’d lost so much weight from running that my pants kept falling down. (On a long run a few weeks ago, at about mile 14, the trail looked every much like it did that day. As we ran over the bridge I said, “I remember this exact spot. This is where I was whining about my pants falling down during that first 5K we ran together!”)
Shortly after that day, Cousin Tammy (aka Super Woman and triathlete) told me to pick a goal race and agreed to run it with me. We selected the Disney Half Marathon in January 2010, which was still about 9 months away. At that time, running a half marathon seemed impossible.
Then, I suddenly took off. I decided I absolutely could not wait to run a half marathon in January. I needed to run one in the fall. So, Phoenix, Zeus and my brother helped me through my first half marathon in October. To me, finishing my first half marathon seemed like my greatest accomplishment ever. To celebrate, I got a 13.1 tattoo on my right shoulder.
After I got that tattoo, a friend told me I’d regret it. She said something like, “You might think this is your biggest accomplishment, but if you are anything like me, you’ve just scratched the surface.”
I giggled today when I read the quote about redefining my impossible because my friend was right about just scratching the surface. I’ve run 12 half marathons and am about to run my third marathon (although still none with a stellar time). And, I’m training for my first sprint triathlon (before I ever considered it, I had to get over the idea that swimming was “impossible!”). Knowing myself as I do, I am also certain I will not stop with the sprint distance.
Do I regret the 13.1 tattoo? Not at all. That 13.1 represents a meaningful time of my life and is a connection to the many wonderful people who support me and my dreams. It is also a reminder that I am constantly redefining my definition of impossible. We are capable of so much more than we think at any given moment in time. We only know what we can accomplish when we push ourselves and begin to layer one success on top of the next.
What about you? What can you do now that once seemed impossible?