I ran my very first marathon on the 4th of January 2015. That’s so much easier said than done, really!
The truth is it took me about 3 freaking years to get my ass at the starting line of my first fun run. Why? Because I’m good at creating bullshit excuses to not do something. I have this image in my mind that ‘runners’ have been running all their lives or probably shortly after they learn how to walk and that there’s NO way I will ever cross a finish line ALIVE if I ever try do that shit. I have always thought that ‘runners’ are the ones you see on TV, running real fast, sweating so bad and looking like there’s nothing in the world for them except the track. ‘Runners’ are tall, long-legged creatures with superhuman endurance and strength. Bla bla bla bla bla…I’m nothing like that!
But sometime around the last few months of 2011, I challenged myself to at least TRY to become physically stronger. I don’t have to be a runner, I just have to get off my butt and move! Ever since I graduated from high school, I rarely engage into physical activities which resulted to my much despised weight gain during my early 20’s. I never had issues with my weight when I was a teenager and I always thought I would stay that way ~ forever! Well, I’m so wrong! So, in my lousy attempt to get back in shape and to get back my youthful energy, I bought myself a pair of white sneakers few days before 2012. I was able to squeeze in ‘jogging’ into my not-so-tight schedule. I became a weekend jogger which is one of the few sane things I have ever done. I even tried to encourage people to do the same Haha! I was sharing a house with strangers then (well they’re my friends now!), so basically they were my targets. I tell them (in subtle ways) the benefits of waking up early and just basically sweating off the calories you’ve gained for the whole week of stress-eating. With these 21st century jobs, it’s a bit tough for people to find time to engage in any kind of healthy living activity crap. They just don't buy it! All they want is to take a nice long sleep during the weekends because why not?! It’s exhausting to work for an entire week and not get a decent sleep. Right? But I just have to put on the patience of a recruiter. I tried my best to stick to my weekend jogs. It was tough because I also just want to sleep in over the weekends. It was not fair waking up early, putting my shoes on and moving quietly around a room filled with snores. It was damn hard! It took me weeks and months of sacrifice but, eventually I have learned to make peace with it. I came to a point when I actually feel lucky because I feel like my days are longer because I start really early. I can get more things done! And my housemates, who used to think that what I was doing was too good to be true, started to believe in the ‘benefits of waking up early’. Score!
But I wasn’t very consistent with my weekend jogs. I get tired easily and that’s one thing I don’t like about myself. I’ve always been wishing for a warrior princess kind of energy so I can do more epic shits. But I’m only human. I’m just a girl with a tiny body and slowing down metabolism as I age. I eat like a monster and I’m having a tough time burning the calories I’ve been taking. What the hell should I do?!
Well, basically I just continued what I have been trying to do ~ be strong and keep moving! There were days when I can’t really see the whole point of what I’m doing and I would just argue with myself about whether or not I should jog on a Saturday morning. It was so not cool because I can’t see much progress. I still weigh the same, I still look the same. It was a never-ending cycle of inner monologues about vanity. If I stop doing my weekend routine no one’s even going to notice AND I will have more time to sleep! Right?! Probably, but then I came across these blogs about how you can actually do what you want to do, or if you don’t know what to do they give you an idea of what you should do. They totally support you about the things you CAN do and push you to continue doing what you love to do. Suddenly, quitting was fading from my dictionary.
GOAL ~ that was something I wasn’t quite sure of, that’s why I keep falling into this I DON’T WANNA DO THIS ANYMORE crappy warp! I figured I should set a real GOAL, or GOALS for that matter. I actually have a friend who once mentioned about this fun run thing. He shared about his running event and told me he was actually expecting to see me there since I usually post my weekend jog pictures on Facebook. That time, I have never thought about joining a fun run at all. I jog, yeah, but I don’t run! But that tiny comment sparked my curiosity. Me? Running? Crossing a finish line? Is it even possible? But I researched a bit about fun runs and I kept reading my favorite blog sites and one thing I noticed was that my top 2 favorite bloggers are runners! They are not like the ‘runners’ that I have always had in my mind. They are normal people who made a decision to just RUN. I can relate so much with their struggles and basically their way of living. The thing is, it wasn’t until I worked abroad when I finally thought about seriously joining fun runs. What changed my mind? Well, I found more than one reason actually.
It might not be obvious because of my snotty personality but I have always wanted to extend my arms to charity. No, I’m not rich and my parents aren’t rich either. It’s just that sometimes, during the course of being a human, you will realize things that could somehow make a difference. I want to make a difference. I want to see CHANGES. I like new things. When I landed back in the Philippines without a job and with a slightly questionable bank balance, I wondered HOW ON EARTH am I going to help others? I only have enough money to survive for a few months. But since I finally have that goal in my mind, I went on with the flow.
First, I tried to get my life back. I went back to the job that I love and I was able to do the things I love once again. I am spending more time with myself, catching up with friends and inhaling my freedom AGAIN. It’s much easier to focus on your goal when your mind is at peace. So, CHARITY…being STRONG…getting back in shape…they are always in my mind every time I’m still having a tough time forcing myself out of bed to do my morning jogs.
On November 2014, while I was catching up with one of my good friends from the house where I stayed years ago, we talked about working out together again though we don’t live in the same house anymore. Only this time, we won’t just do light weekend jogs anymore, we want something more challenging and more fun. And that’s when I started obsessing about fun runs around my city. I tried searching the Internet and I kept asking people if they know any upcoming fun run events. One of my good friends from work mentioned about RUNtarantantan. Interesting organization!
So, I Googled it and BAM! Goal almost reached! I signed up the moment I got the details. I even signed my former roommate up and I thought THIS IS IT! Enough dreaming and thinking and over analyzing and just freaking DO IT now! Take that race kit home and try to condition your body before the actual run! That’s exactly what I did. And you wanna know what the most interesting part was? Fun runs organized by RUNtarantantan are not just affordable, you actually run for a cause. It just dawned on me that that could be my way of extending my arms to charity. I’ll get fit and strong, I’ll have new experiences and I’ll be able to help.
I want to share with you guys more photos from my very first fun run.