I miss it. I can’t lie. The rush of wind in my ears, pattern of rain against my cheeks. I miss the satisfaction of having completed a run, 5k, 10k, it doesn’t matter. The feeling is the same, a feeling of excitement and of peace, all at once. I miss it.
Then there’s the other truth, the one that hurts more than anything. I very rarely run anymore. I hate catching sight of my body, less toned than it was before, bigger, less attractive to me. Rear view mirrors, shop windows, other people’s eyes (though I know, truthfully, that no one is looking). I hate that my damaged ankle stops me from being as fast as I was. My confidence has been truly and severely knocked. I don’t really see myself in the same light these days and what I do see, I don’t like.
It would be easy, at this point, to slip back into old habits. Obsessive calorie restriction, compulsive lying about what I ate and how I am living.
Instead I weigh myself obsessively, stare at my stomach for ages several times a day and smoke cigarettes hoping to allay my appetite. Because this? This is not a body I recognise.
I know what I need to do. Embrace exercise, embrace my body as it is. Embrace life with both arms and remember that I am better than I was in so many ways. Ignore the creeping, crippling doubt and just BE. It’s easier said than done but it does need to be done. I need to fly, I need to feel, I need to run.