Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Girl Who Never Thought She Could

I ran.
Not "I ran because someone was chasing me" ran.
Not "I ran because I was racing my friend" ran.
I mean, actually ran. 1.5 miles ran.
This may not seem very impressive to you, but for the girl who lived her whole life in fear of her asthma, this is a big accomplishment. 
I was the girl in high school who found any way to get out of running the mile because I was embarrassed.
I've heard it many times: "You shouldn't be embarrassed. You have asthma, it's okay."
But it wasn't okay. Not to me.
It was embarrassing.
For the longest time, I let my asthma control my life.
It's a scary thing, that asthma.
I have never been a couch potato, but I didn't do as much as I could have.
I was always scared that I'd stop breathing and I'd suffer through yet another asthma attack.
A lot of people who don't have asthma, don't understand why it's hard for me to "just do it".
Over the seven week break, I had nothing to do during the day usually, so I went to the gym.
It was only until the beginning of this week that I started waking up every day at 6 am to go running at the gym with my roommate.
At first, it was really embarrassing to run with her because she's been running for years and she can crank out four miles in an hour. 
I, however, could not.
She encouraged me, though.
She never makes me feel like I'm not doing well enough.
Today, I realized that after I ran, I was breathing just fine. 
No wheezing, no dizziness, nothing.
Just pain in my legs.
This made me cry.
I was so happy that I have finally pushed through my asthma and ran.
I ran. A lot.
I still can't crank out 4 miles in an hour, but I also haven't been running since high school.
So, to my favorite gym teacher from middle school:
That girl who cheated on the mile run,
that girl who came crying to you because she was so embarrassed that she couldn't do it,
that girl who could not, no matter how much she wanted to, run that mile,
well, she doesn't feel like her lungs are on fire anymore.
She doesn't feel like she's going to pass out after ten minutes.
She can run that mile now.
I never imagined that I would ever be able to participate in a 5k, but tomorrow, I'm a participant in the BYU-Idaho Glow Run 5k. 
All I had to do was realize that I can't compare my chapter 1 to somebody else's chapter 21.
Fact is, I may not be able to run four miles consecutively, but my determination has never been stronger.
One day, soon or not, I will be able to run four miles without stopping.
I'm not using my asthma as an excuse anymore.


Julie said...

Asthma sucks. I used to love running but I was never great at it. I've recently given it another go, too, and I need to retrain my lungs but it felt good to run a mile without stopping. Keep up your awesomeness!

...Elyse.Christine... said...

Thanks Boolie! It's been really great to start running. I'm really happy about the progress I've made in only a few short months.You keep it up too!

Megan Denise said...

Loved your post! When I was in gym in jr high/HS I was always embarrassed to run that mile too. My problem was different though--I was overweight and would have wheezing and asthma like symptoms whenever I attempted that dreaded mile. I made a few changes to my life (mostly my attitude) and have now ran a full marathon. Keep up the good work & don't give up!

...Elyse.Christine... said...

Megan Denise, I'm so glad that you enjoyed my post and that you've made those changes! Keep the faith and motivation! Congratulations on your marathon!

Rebekah Tiberend said...

Thank you for your post! I have asthma too, but I never knew until the summer of last year. I went on trek and that's what did it in. I'm also overweight (you don't really want to workout if you can't breath lol!). Whenever we went on hikes for girls camp or when we went on trek, my leaders pushed me so hard. They thought I was just being lazy and that I didn't want to because of my weight. I always told them, "I can't breath! I can't breath!" and they would say, "Oh, come on Bekah, just keep going! You'll be fine!"

Now, they all feel really bad XD XD

Anywho, thanks for your blog! Now that my asthma is under control (thank you inhalers!), I'm going to try and start working out again :)