Why do people have to try and tear each other down so much? Seriously??
I could give a million examples, but I had a conversation with a woman that just left me scratching my head a few days ago. She was asking me about my running, weight loss, etc. and asked me what I weigh. Now I never took Social Etiquette 101, but I am pretty sure that isn't a question you just go asking people... especially people you aren't related to, married to, or best friends with.
I am super easy-going and happen to be very happy with and secure about what I weigh (if you missed this post, I recently hit 70lbs lost) so I told her that I have been at 137lbs for about a month. She acted all surprised and said she thought I was "smaller" than that, and then proceeded to tell me that she thinks a healthy weight for me would be more like 117 and I should work to lose another 20lbs. Seriously?
For one, 137lbs for someone that is 5ft 5inches tall is a completely healthy weight. It is right in the normal weight range. I have muscles. I even have some definition in my abs! I have gotten a lot faster with my running. I feel healthy and strong right now. I am wearing a size 4. If I never weigh a pound less than 137, I am perfectly ok with that. Seriously.
I am pretty confident that I could diet and get myself down to 117 if I felt the desire to (and worked really hard at it). But would I be at my strongest? Would I be the healthiest I can be? Some people might be their strongest and healthiest at 117. Maybe I would, but I don't think I would be. I don't buy that lighter/thinner always equals healthier. I don't buy that skinnier is always better. I don't want my daughters to believe it, or my friends and family!
I have some newly-found self confidence (thank you running!) so her comment didn't hurt me or bother me, but it really did leave me wondering WHY people do that. Why do people say things to try and make others feel bad? Or to doubt themselves? Or to feel like they aren't good enough? And I know sometimes we are way too hard on ourselves too. I have definitely been guilty of being too hard on myself, although I think I am a lot more emotionally healthy now than I used to be (again, thank you running).
One of the things I have loved about running is how awesome and generally supportive the running community is of each other. Both virtually (in all the great running blogs!) and at races, it seems that most runners respect and encourage each other, whether they are running 5 minute miles of 12 minute miles, whether they are running their first race or their 100th, and whether they weigh under 100 pounds or over 200. I am just as proud of my friends who get out there and struggle to finish a three mile run as I am of my friends who run marathons regularly.
I think that is why I enjoy blogging on this blog so much, and why I enjoy reading so many running blogs. The support is great.
So whether you are happy with your weight or trying to lose, whether you are already super fast or have paces in the double digits, and whether you can do a 20-miler without stressing or are still building up to running more than a couple of miles, BE PROUD of yourself. Be happy with yourself. You are good enough how you are.You are doing awesome and the hard work and energy you are putting into running are going to pay off in a multitude of ways.
And now your homework is to find someone to lift up emotionally today. Give a smile, a genuine compliment, a hug... whatever. Instead of tearing others down and trying to make others feel worse, lets all make someone feel a little better about themselves today.