Ode to the Things that Scare Me: Monsters, Flats and Cardio

I went to the gym tonight. And a lot of the nights over the last two weeks too. After my sweaty run. Nothing like a little natural blush to make one photo-ready.

Oh, sorry, I guess I wasn't clear enough: this means it's the apocalypse. Might want to mark your calendars...

Those of you who know me well know that the gym hasn't exactly been my thing since...well, ever really. I was picked last in gym throughout most of my time in elementary school and always ended up walking for the last half of the one mile I was required to run at the end of each middle school semester. I never considered myself much of an athlete, unless dancing (and later in my life, yoga) made me an athlete (which I now believe they do.) I've heard the squirms of women as they gaze down at my feet, wondering how I've contorted them to fit into six inch heels for an 8 hour workday; but in spite of my innate ability to rock pair of painful stilettos, I begin erupting in hives when faced with the prospect of heavy breathing and burning thighs that comes with prolonged exposure to an eliptical.

This is really quite odd if you think about it, because every other aspect of my nature would imply I was that kind of person who wakes up and heads to the gym at 5:30AM: I'm a (recovering) type A, I care about myself, I try to feed my body well (with the occasional dip into Whataburger Spicy Ketchup and those donuts in my office on Monday mornings...) What's been missing here? I've decided over the course of the last two weeks that it's time to give my fear of my Asics a literal run for their money.

And so I've been running. And biking. And I've even brought out the yoga mat in my living room again and have contorted myself into some poses I didn't even know I remembered over the last few days. What's more to love? Well, that I'm loving it. That's what.

I love coming home and knowing there's something energizing that stands before me and my Netflix, a place to put my energy when the working day is done but I have tons of it left to spare. And there's something about taking out whatever angst I may have on my stationary bike, instead of one of my coworkers (or myself) that makes the whole gym thing worth while. I know, what's gotten into me?

I know that the impetus to work out, for those of us who don't do it regularly, can be something that comes in spurts: you run every day for a month and then spend the next three months eating everything in sight. I've totally been there, done that enough times to know that training for a marathon right now probably wouldn't be the ideal course of action. A little bit goes a long way with this woman. A little bit is consistent. And that little bit is suiting me just fine.

I certainly won't end this with some kind of preach-y rant about how you might want to try going on a run if you don't run already, because no one knows better than I do that such preaching works the exact opposite way it's intended. I will say this though: I am all about my new routine, and since I don't know if I'll ever make it to a middle school reunion clad in a track uniform just to prove I can make the whole mile without walking, I'll let you know for the record that I can now. In fact, the other night, I ran three.

So if you were picked last in gym (even if you were totally cute and had the best shoe closet of all the girls), this one's for you. You are all athletes in my mind, and it's never too late to become one.

Plus, with all those different kinds of running shoes, I think it might even be time to add to my collection...