I’m almost half-way through my 39th year. And many things have changed in my life during this year of 2018. A significant one is that I’ve dropped 20 lbs. I’m 5 lbs away from my first weight loss goal and plan to focus on losing my next 25 lbs in 2019. I stepped into a six-week challenge at my kickboxing gym on September 17 and over those weeks of hard workouts, eating clean, and hydrating better, I dropped 14.9 lbs. I knew my goal was 25 lbs so I decided to keep going with my workouts, nutrition, and added half marathon training to my mix.
More weight has come off, but even more noticeably, inches have melted from my 5’10 frame – three inches from my hips, three inches from my chest, over two inches from my waist and some inches from my arms and thighs. The decision to train for my first half marathon is something I wanted to do for over two years. But this fall became the space and time to actually commit to it and do this for me.
I am legit a runner now.
A runner who loves the quiet of the mornings as my feet hit the pavement and my legs get lighter with each pound I say goodbye to. A runner who loves the feeling of seeing negative splits in my runs when the sweat is drenching me and the miles are crushed. A runner with my upgraded runner’s belt fitted with double water bottles and energy gels, Balega socks and compression tights on my body, eating plans for my pre-workout and post-workout meals set up, and my favorite running playlists ready to go in Spotify.
I’ve also walked out the deep waters and at times hard but also refining soul work of a break-up. Not easy. At all. Especially when unexpected grief hit my heart traveling 100 mph or memories popped up like corn kernels bursting open in a microwave bag. Easter Sunday I know I smelled the scent of my former boyfriend’s cologne at least twice during church service as it wafted from others who walked past me – unexpected, moving my heart and emotions – and yet another “and this too shall pass” moment. And it did. And I kept breathing.
And another day came and I grew through this journey of healing and perspective.
If there’s one thing 2018 taught me the most about, it was the gift of being present: with God, with myself, in my relationships and commitments, and also the hope of dreams not yet born but somehow singing a melody from the distance that they are on the way.
I’m learning that being present is a choice. There’s so much in this world we can choose to do…or not do. I choose present because it helps me bring my presence into the little and larger pages of my life. And that is important because my life is important. It is a gift from the Lord. A deep act of intention from Him to me. Each day I marvel in the freedom to grow into one more day’s experience of the chapters He’s writing for me in the book that holds the stories my life.
The time I spent yesterday doing 30-second running intervals and 60-second speed walking intervals for 6 miles are an hour and minutes and seconds that I won’t ever get back. I spent that time and now that time is gone. But the time that’s coming is a gift that I want to use well. Especially as I consider what I am looking for in 2019 – for myself, my relationship with God, and new adventures that are just beginning to emerge for me.
What are you looking for in 2019 as the new year approaches? Will you dream and goal set, but forget about your desire to be present in those things weeks or even months later?
Or will you do something very different…and surprise yourself with your intention?
I vote for the surprise.