Thursday, March 8, 2012

Body Parts

Body parts really do change when we exercise. Since I started boot camp which involves 1,005 lunges and squats each class, I have noticed my thighs are growing. I also thinking all the trail running and climbing I’m doing is contributing to my jeans feeling tight on my thighs. I don’t yet look like this:

My wish is that that damn right arm of his was amputated so we could get the full effect of what it means to be one big muscle.

Phew. Sweating.

Anyway, when we start to get stronger, we don’t necessarily start to get smaller. We grow in muscle tone and volume. We need to be okay with this. I know many people who train for marathons end up gaining weight and are surprised. Not only has the number on the scale increased, but clothes start to fit differently.

I am taking my growing thighs as a sign of strength and fortitude. These are the legs that will carry me up and over mountains. They have to be strong to do that. These are the legs that will support my core and my ass and keep me healthy, hopefully injury free. These are the legs that will scream “I am STRONG,” as opposed to whispering, “I am kind of in shape.

This son of mine is also finding his own pubescent muscles starting to grow. And, no, I am not sure if he is trying out to be a cheerleader, but I do know that this pic somehow ended up on Facebook so it is fair game:

sammuscle

Speaking of growing, lately I have had the pleasure of watching a dear friend transform physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually as she trains for her first half marathon. I got this text from her this weekend after she ran 11 miles for the first time in her life (only 1 ½ years ago, she could barely run a block):

P1120115

Those words perfectly sum up EXACTLY why I love running.

She is nice and gives me the credit, but the credit is all hers. Sure, maybe I believed in her before she believed in herself, but somewhere along the way she got behind herself. I know that running has transformed many of us, and all for the better.

So, if you are sitting around wondering if you can or should do it, knock it off. You can and you should. Now, go embrace those body parts that make you able to keep doing what you’re doing.

SUAR

52 comments:

  1. were there other words in this post because I did not see past that picture of Ono's amazing thighs...

    :)

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    1. I agree. Didn't bother with any reading... still looking at the picture.

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    2. my thoughts exactly! ....off to fan myself; feeling mighty warm!

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    3. Same here - nice way to start my day today :-)

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  2. perfect post!

    I look at my race photos and know that it was my strong legs and unstoppable mind that got me to the start and carried me through to the finish line.

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  3. Love this part: "These are the legs that will scream “I am STRONG,” as opposed to whispering, “I am kind of in shape.”

    SO true!

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  4. I tried to do a crossfit type class, and found I was so tight from all the running, I just fell over a lot :) Anyway, switched to swimming and it's better (and the people in my class feel much safer).

    Congrats to your friend - love those kind of stories!

    Carilyn

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  5. I love everything about this post. It is inspiring, encouraging and has a picture of Apolo looking like THAT. Nicely done. Huge congrats to your friend on her first 11-miler!! The first time you run a new distance is always an amazing feeling.

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  6. Look at those freaking guns!!
    That
    Text......awesome. Pure. Awesome.

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  7. Great post. I want to go run!:)

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  9. I'm sorry... were you saying something?

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  10. Personal experience has shown that ice skating without clothes can end very, very badly. Damn you Jagermeister.

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  11. A very timely post Beth, thanks! Right now I am sitting here trying to talk myself out of running today. WHY? Because it is so DAMN hard. Thought we had my breathing issues corrected, BUT NO, they just took a left turn. I am again about 75% of normal (whatever that menans). So every freaking step I gasp for air. Not fun, I want FUN back. But, I WILL run today, I CAN do it. I will just slowly than I wanted to be at this point, and hope FUN returns soon.

    And super kudos to your friend, I KNOW that feeling and it is SO very cool! Good Luck to her!!

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  12. SUAR- Your friend TOTALLY ROCKS!!! I hope she sees this comment so she knows how AWESOME she is!!!!

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  13. Another fantastic post! Thanks so much. I run to be strong too so I totally get it. BTW, here's a post of mine on the same theme (kinda) that gets a lot of hits. http://www.jannielynn.blogspot.com/2011/11/never-mess-with-strong-woman.html Thought some of your readers would enjoy the quote if nothing else. :-)

    Thanks again.

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  14. Your friend does deserve all of the credit. I can remember some famous person (I think it was Oprah) talking about how everyone says it must to be so easy to exercise and lose weight when you have a personal trainer and personal chef at your beck and call. She said, "It ain't them running around the track while my butt goes blubba blubba behind me!" The point is, a great trainer can do wonders but s/he can't do the work FOR you. Your friend may have used you for inspiration and motivation but she did all of the work. Which, frankly, IS the hard part most days. Go SUAR's friend! You so got this!

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  15. Running is POWERFUL. It heals the soul. It makes us strong. It brings the most unlikely people together. It fills us with pride. It's so personal, yet communal at the same time. It's incredible. (Said from the gal who has completed multiple marathons and half marathons and finds herself starting over after having a kid, not losing the weight and not running for about 2 years).

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  16. Beth, your dear friend is also my dear friend (since kindergarten). Im proud to say I will be running the half with her here in California. You've inspired her and she's inspired me. Love that trickle down affect. Your blog has turned me on to other amazing runner mothers and great advice. THANK YOU!

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    1. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!! I have heard so much about you and cannot wait to meet one day. You fab at fifty girls are going to do amazing things on 4/22. So proud of you too!

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    2. WOW Beth, what awesome followers you have! All these comments are amazing, thanks for the encouragement!

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  17. Is it hot in here???
    Congrats to your friend. I hope to be there one day too!

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  18. What an awesome text.....

    How cool is it that Sam is sporting the SUAR shirt at school.

    What do we say about the bottoms of our shirts fitting tighter? Is that a muscle that is growing?

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  19. I've been blaming, I mean crediting, the bike for my burgeoning thighs.
    Yay for your friend. Running is fabulous that way and many others.

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  20. LOVE everything about this post. Hooray for your friend's fantastic realization of her goal and good on you for believing in her. I'm also learning to appreciate the strength of my body and all its imperfections. Something about running makes me feel much more confident than I did before.

    Oh and Apollo? Sooo hot!

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  21. Love this post. Really hit home. I recently had to retire my favorite pair of jeans because my thighs would no longer fit in them. Definately a good problem to have. Strength is beautiful!

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  22. Beautiful post. I have a dear friend who reminds me every week of her accomplishments with her weight loss and fitness improvements. I am so proud of her - and the credit as all hers - but I love to hear about it and support her!

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  23. You might look like that by the end of summer. It's just a matter of increasing muscle mass...and, well, a sex-change operation.

    Sam has some kickin' biceps there!

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  24. My goodness look at your son's bicep.....HUGENESS! Love your friends text!!! Love that I read this after just getting back from the mall to get myself a larger size of jeans! Yep, I've been dealing with PF so I haven't been able to run much so instead of curling up in a ball with depression I started lifting weights at home. I rarely get on the scale but I did recently and I gained a few pounds. It doesn't bother me one bit....I love muscle!

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  25. Replies
    1. Totally agree with this one!

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    2. That was incredibly profound. I can't believe he wrote that!

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  26. OMG! I thought I was the ONLY one that GAINED weight and grew out of my jeans while training! I just couldn't figure it out... Still, I feel like a million in my head when I log more miles in the book! Thank you once again, Beth, for making things acceptable! :-)

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  27. Beth, I think I need to rethink my legs. I love how you put it.
    Also, isn't your son still a child??? That bicep is insane!! (And how cool that he's wearing a SUAR shirt!)

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  28. Ahh.. your son is adorable! I know that my thighs are my least favorite body part- but they are strong and it has taken me a while to accept that my thighs will never be little muscle-less twigs like the models of the world- I am proud when I see that quad definition! Your friend is AMAZING.. I have recently had a similar experience with my friend who started doing the Livefit trainer with me. In the beginning she was like, “5 lbs is too heavy” but now 10 weeks later she is RUNNING on the treadmill (someone who told me that she didn’t think she knew how to run) It is so amazing to see someone find that belief in themselves- which is what gave me the final push to start studying to be a personal trainer.. Just so I can help a whole lot of people realize their potential

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  29. Ok that last line makes me cry.. I'm so struggling inside with this race. Congrats to you friend I know how incredible that feels!!! You are so inspiring to so many. He's got some great biceps!

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  30. Good lord look at Sam and that bicep! He's growing up to be a handsome guy.

    Great post girl (plus the pic of Apolo is quite pleasing). I'm having a similar experience (was actually going to do a similar post) watching my body grow thicker and changing with the growth of baby mclain. Strength and fortitude come to my mind too; the body is truly an amazing thing.

    Kudos to your friend!!!

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  31. At 39 years old, I just ran my first half-marathon this past Saturday. Although my time was beyond slow at 2:35, I cried like an idiot when I finished. I never in my life thought I could so something like that. I started my training in November, set the goal, and never missed a day of the training plan (except the one week when I hurt my back : ) I discovered your blog towards the beginning of my training, and you inspired me everyday to just "Shut up and run". I thought of Sherri often on my runs, even though I never knew her and I live all the way in Texas. You and her inspired me and pushed me...thank you so much!

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    1. THank you so much for this feedback. It is always good to know that we inspire each other! Congrats on your half. You must feel amazing!

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  32. It was reading blogs from people who started where I was (overweight and out of shape) that got me started running. Running has definitely transformed me; I went from not able to run a block to finishing 8 half marathons last year. I'm slow (seriously turtle-like), but it doesn't matter; I'm having fun and in the best shape of my life.

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    1. Amazing. I love to hear stories like yours. Really shows how running can help people live their best lives.

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  33. Geez, I always though Apolo was way skinnier, or at least he was in Dancing with the Stars. Love this pic!!

    Your poor son is not likely to live that pic down LOLOL, but it is a lesson learned!

    Love this post, reminds me of why I took up running. :)

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    1. He is skinnier now. Used to be much bulkier and had to have his jeans custom made.

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  34. Love that text! Huge congrats to your friend! I so remember that feeling last year the first time I ever ran double digits of being amazed that my body just did that! Running does do amazing things for you!

    And by the way, that photo of Apollo....thank you!

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  35. Great Post!! Those strong legs will help you everyday:)

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  36. Aw, good for her! It is so rewarding to see new runners reaching these milestones and realizing they can do SO MUCH more than they ever thought. Reminds me of back in my day of slogging around the block carrying 50 extra pounds.

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  37. She did all the hard work but half of the battle is in your head and I think that's where you came in. Congrats to your friend..

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  38. Denise S. thank you for mentioning turtle-like running...that's me. I keep saying it doesn't matter, I'm running, but sometimes my damn head gets the best of me. I love the positive, encouraging comments hear do wonders for my negative head space. Thanks to Beth and all of her followers!

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