Making An Impact

I love new reading material almost as much as I love getting my hands on new music. There’s something about diving into an untouched book or magazine that I love.

Geez. I’m a nerd.

That being said, the only magazine I subscribe to ( no surprise) is Runners World. It’s always loaded with info I find useful as well as amusing. I love reading about elite runners and soaking up what they do and implementing whatever might work for me.  Of course there’s always some inspirational runners story that makes me feel proud to be a part of the running community.

This month I’ve been reading with avid interest as it features “every day, ordinary” runners.  They had a big contest you could throw your name in the hat to be the cover person for this months edition.

I contemplated it. And didn’t.

Oh I have in the past, and was blown away when I was selected to be a part of the Dec 2012 “Runners Body” feature ( you can read that in another post) it was an amazing experience to work with a professional photographer and be photographed in such a way that showed the strength, power, and athleticism of my body.

Some of the winners selected for this months feature included cover winner who lost over 100 lbs. running and how her life has been changed, others who have overcome great odds, some run crazy numbers of races and miles, they have battled through diseases, abuse, and emotional trauma.  They train, teach, inspire and are these beautiful shining examples to the people they are around.

Running has been a sanctuary, a place of healing, hope, and strength for them. I read these stories and cry. I get inspired. I dream bigger.

That’s when I think…. “yeah, now I know why I don’t toss my name in to those competitions. I’m just so… ordinary.”

I haven’t done or experienced the things these people have gone through.

I mean, yeah, running let me drop the weight of a hefty toddler and I do relate to it being a place I go to for thinking, stress release, peace, and my personal escape.

But the thought came again… I’m just…so… ordinary.

However, as I thought on that and reflected on those stories, things started coming to my mind…

All the times people have messaged me, responded to this blog, or talked to me in person to tell me that I inspire them. To keep doing what I do because it motivates them to DO something…. to make changes, to get moving, to be strong, to make better food choices, to be the best “me” they can be etc.

When my crazy running posts have people wanting to go and try running. They ask about shoes, gear, and how to start. I share from my meager education on being a runner. I rejoice when they really start embracing it.

When someone tells me they finally signed up for  a race. Best feeling ever.

Or comments that if I can be out ( running, cycling, or whatever craziness) they too, can get out and do what they need to do. I remember a friend messaging me to tell me how she was struggling through her workout and she remembered seeing my post that I was doing 28 miles that morning. She said  “remembering you were out running, I told myself if you could do that, I could get my workout done!”

When I counsel/mentor/encourage someone and they “get it” and start on their health and fitness journey… and start walking that road of freedom…nothing feels better.

Like… nothing.

That’s when I realized…. I might not ever make it in a magazine by doing something “spectacular”  but I am making a difference in my personal world that I live in.

Being me… in all my odd, fun, weird, non-conforming, quirkiness doing what I do….does touch and impact lives. I don’t have to be anyone else or do what they’re doing.

I just need to be me and use the talents, gifts, and abilities that God has given me and that can make an impact in the world I operate in.

You too, my faithful 1.5 readers, never underestimate, the impact you have in your world.

You can inspire, encourage, build up, and challenge those around you =)

Tell me…. how do you inspire or encourage in your personal world ?



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8 years ago I began what I now refer to as my "journey into lifestyle fitness". After a yearly check in with my Dr he said I looked "really good on paper, but I might consider losing a few pounds" I wasn't offended... I knew I needed to but it seemed like to much work at the time. In that year we had adopted 2 girls out of foster care, plus caring for my 3 sons & husband sort of left me on the back burner taking care of "me". I told him I "used to" walk & he encouraged me to at least get back to that. I left his office that day, started, & never quit. As time moved on my walks increased in length & speed. I started mingling some jogging into it...then after more time some short sprints. One day I realized I was doing more running than anything else. I learned to run longer and farther. I constantly challenged myself to do more. I realized I had turned into a runner & was loving it. I have since run 6 half marathons, 2 full marathons, and my first 50K scheduled for March 1,2015. Not bad for a girl who just started off walking not quite 2 miles! My body was now beginning to show the results of my work as weight & inches dropped off. I began to add in boxing & weights on days I wasn't running. Over time as the fat left, my new muscles were waiting underneath =) Obviously, I also made some food changes. Nothing drastic..just started eating less and trying to eat better.. I hated diets and how they made me feel....deprived & left out of all the adjusting & eating less of what I liked and moving more.. I found myself getting in decent physical shape. It began my thinking of lifestyle and not "dieting". As I got stronger,healthier & more fit it was an easier process to "let go" of some of the foods I had enjoyed. I had more energy, strength and confidence in what I could do. It was empowering. It made me realize that I probably wasn't the only one who wanted to lose weight, be healthy & strong but not always be on some sort of "diet". Maybe my journey & what I had learned & been doing might possibly help others to success in their lives... I consider myself to be rather normal and ordinary ( meaning I haven't always been into fitness and healthy eating) it has been a steady, daily, learned process with good days and bad days and my hope is that you too, will see the greatness in you, and that you have the ability and power to change and do anything you put your mind to. If you want change, you can make it happen. It's just one day at a time, making smart moves and better choices, and before you know it, things are happening. Get started on your journey, really, what do you have to lose ? And yet, so much to gain =)

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