Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Biggest Fear

Is everyone (anyone?) watching Biggest Loser this season?  Well, whether you are watching or not, here is what happened last night - no spoilers I promise! 

This woman was running on the treadmill, her legs got tired and she went flying off the back of it.  Afterward, she said that was her biggest fear, to fall off the treadmill.  Bob the Trainer laughed and said something along the lines of "Well, thats out of the way now."

And it is so true.  People come up with all kinds of exercise related fears.  I might fall off the treadmill.  I will look stupid trying to figure out the weight machines.  I won't be able to touch my toes in yoga class.  And the biggest fear of all time:

What if I come in last in the race?

When I started racing, that was my number one biggest fear.  What if I come in last?  Will people laugh at me?  Will the world open up and swallow me whole?  Will it be posted on YouTube?  Will I be a loser?

My first distance race - a 10 miler - it happened to me.  It was my third race ever, I had trained hard and I did my best.  But I came in dead last.  By a LOT.  My family had been waiting to cheer me on at mile 8 and I was so behind everyone that they started to worry.  In fact, I was soooo very last that they took away the course, I almost got lost and if my cousin Chrissy hadn't been waiting at the finish line, I would have been all alone at the end.

So what happened when I came in last?  I was tired and I kind of felt like I never wanted to run more than 3 miles ever again ...  ... ...

But then, a few nights later, I told my sister and cousin that I wanted to run a half-marathon.  What is the worst that could happen?  I had already come in last...that fear was gone.

I did not let realizing my biggest fear defeat me....instead it strengthened me.  I had raced 10 miles.  I had trained and I had finished.   I had experienced the worst and it wasn't that bad.

All of these Biggest Fears - they are just holding us back.  If they actually happen, it turns out that they are no big deal.  It is not the end of the world if you come in last.  No one is going to laugh at you if you can't touch your toes.  If someone does laugh at you...well...laugh with them and get over it. 

Facing your biggest fear - and possibly realizing it - is all part of the process. 


  1. i used to be afraid to walk in a race... Well, that went out the window at that Maine 1/2 Marathon... I think we walked half of it :) .....