On Wednesday I shared about how I have a "stick-to-it-iveness" that I can credit my parents for. In fact, my personal mantra could be "Never say never, never say die, never, ever quit, just keep on." There's a runner's message board that I participate in and my signature for that board is "Just Keep Running" which is the mantra I've used in every single marathon I've participated in. If you just keep running, you make it to the end, no matter what.
So while I have not had the quick success I would have liked to with weight loss, I have never quite given up. Thank goodness because God only knows what size I would be by now if I had. Long time followers will remember the many rants I've posted about my thyroid. It is so freaking frustrating that I work so hard to have only minimal results. Yet, do I really work hard enough? Additionally, for the last couple of years it seemed like there was always something setting me back - the latest thing being my athletic injury that is making it hard for me to exercise as vigourously as I would like. While I do not intend for 2011 The Year of Helen to be strictly about my weight, I've got to address this weight issue. Like it or not, it holds me back in many ways.
So how do I translate my stick-to-it-iveness into kindness and caring enough for my body that I get some weight loss results? To be honest, I had no idea. Then as I was perusing blogs I ran across two that sent my head into a spin and made me realize what my first step can be.
First, I read this post by Anne, "frustration tolerance". Anne is giving up Monster drinks and she shared that she did not wait until the last drop was gone and in fact, still has some in the house. But she still likes them and wants to have them. She is in the process of tolerating her frustration over the fact that she shouldn't drink them. She is willing herself into doing what she knows is best for her body.
Then I read MizFit's blog on Willpower vs. Willingness and this statement really stuck out: "Are you, as I am, simply willing to do what it takes to reach your goal/achieve your personal mission statement because it’s just that IMPORTANT TO YOU?"
When it comes to running, I have a high level of frustration tolerance, no doubt about it. When I first started running, I literally willed my legs to keep going. Over the years of running, through all sorts of weather and all sorts of injuries, I have willed myself to keep going. But was it willpower or willingness? I believe at first it was willpower. Now, I know it is willingness to do whatever I need to, to achieve what I want, because I've seen the positive effects and benefits running has brought to me. So just like a coin with its head and tail, my running coin flipped from willpower to willingness.
Lightbulb moment? Take the lessons I've learned from being a late in life runner and run with them to meet other goals (including but not exclusively weight loss) and make 2011 The Year of Helen.