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What do you do?

“Excellence is not a singular act, but a habit. You are what you repeatedly do.”

- Shaquille O’Neal

I believe that there is a profound truth in Shaq’s words. We are what we do. Whether we intend for it or not, it happens. Tell jokes and you’re a comedian. Eat fancy food and you’re a foodie. I run and am a runner.

I got into a discussion about running with an acquaintance awhile back and they commented, “Well, I bet it’s easy for you, you have a runner’s body.” While I sincerely appreciated the compliment, it took all the strength I had not to burst out laughing. Yes, I’m beginning to have a runner’s body, I thought, but only because I run. And because I’ve put in consistent effort over the past 2.5 years to cultivate that ability. I’ve been hurt some of the time, which might have been avoided if I had eased into the whole running thing a little more slowly, but for a majority of the time I’ve slowly and steadily worked at it – one step at a time, one mile at a time.

A mantra that I use whenever I get really tired is “Your only job is to keep putting one foot in front of the other.” I just keep repeating it and it reminds me that things are really pretty simple, just take that next step.

And if the one-step-at-a-time approach can take a low self-esteem, pudgy, lazy guy like I was and turn me into a marathoner hell-bent on running on every continent, imagine what it could do for you!

I’m not saying it’s easy. There will be setbacks. There will be detractors and naysayers along the way who will try to keep you who you were. Who you were is who they’re comfortable with. Seek out people who see who you can be – who you’re becoming – and will support you. I support you!

The journey of 1000 miles starts will a single step. And the first is most definitely the hardest. But the second is a little easier, the third even easier still. Before you know it, you’ll be stepping boldly forward taking giant strides the old you never dreamed possible.

Take that first step, friends.

Make it an incredible week!

  • I always loved that pic of you! What you say is very true. We didn’t realize we were changing our rep when we made the commitment to try one new thing to us every month back in 2009. It had to be at least once a month but we were fairly new to our weight loss adventure and social situations were very difficult for us. But we would go to the art museum, botanical gardens, festivals, parts of town we never went to, etc. By the end of the year, I was talking to some family and they said something like “oh but you’re an adventurer; always on the go and try new things.” I wanted to laugh because I was still really obese and did not think of myself as an adventurer. But in looking back over the social media I’d posted pics on that year, the proof was staring me in the face. We were adventurers…and there are far worse things in this life to be! :-)

  • Absolutely Mrs! You are adventurers :) I’ve really begun to believe the “act-as-if” philosophy. Act as if you were what you want to be and, pretty soon, you will be.

    jeff

    June 10, 2012

  • You know just having the support does make all the difference in the world. When a workout or a run gets tough I know that the Mrs has my back and it helps me get through that next step/rep/workout/whatever. I almost feel bad for the naysayers sometimes because what a shame it must be to live your life without any hope for being able to change.

    The Mr

    June 4, 2012

  • Totally Mr! I think it is so much better to enjoy and support the changes that other people are making. It’s an incredible experience to make a change and takes courage and power. Those are traits to be admired and to aspire to!

    jeff

    June 10, 2012

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