It’s crazy for me to think that a year ago this weekend I was preparing for my first of two 20 mile runs as part of my training for the Chicago Marathon. Oh, how things change in just a year’s time! Honestly, at this time last year, I had no idea I would be just 6 short weeks away from having a baby – and due the day of the 2011 Chicago Marathon!
As much as I miss being able to go on a 20 mile run (or just run outside for that matter), I am happy that I am still able to be as active as I have been throughout my pregnancy. I thought I would be able to run a little more easily this far into my pregnancy, but I am happy that I am still able to run the little bit I can at 34 weeks pregnant.
As I was switching out some weights yesterday morning at the gym, one of the guys I see every morning gave me one of the best compliments of my life:
“You’re an inspiration.”
I just laughed and said thank you. However, the more I thought about it, the more I realized I am not sure I am worthy of such a lofty phrase. Sure, I hope that my active lifestyle (pregnant or not) inspires at least someone to get up off the couch and do something to be just a little healthier. But, in all honesty, being able to workout like I do at 34 weeks pregnant I don’t feel makes me an inspiration.
Yes, I could be using pregnancy as an excuse to sit on my butt (which I do a lot more now than I used to) and do nothing for 9.5 months, but that’s just not who I am. I love being active. I love it so much, I have a degree in Exercise Science, hold 2 health + fitness/strength training certifications, and teach Physical Education as a career. So, really, it wasn’t a question of whether or not I would continue to be active during my pregnancy. I just continued to do what I had been doing, but took it down a notch or two.
The people who are inspiring to me are the people who are able to overcome adversity, the people who try to make a difference in someone else’s life, the people who do amazing things with their lives. Overcoming cancer, raising thousands of dollars for someone in need, being able to finish a marathon with two prosthetic legs… now, that’s inspiring!
I am humbled that someone thinks of me as an inspiration, but I hope that one day I can make an even bigger difference in someone’s life. So, one of my goals post-pregnancy is to run a race for charity. This is something I have never done before and I honestly don’t know why I haven’t. But I figure if I’m going to run a race anyway, I might as well do something good for someone else while I’m at it. If I can help even just a little bit to help find a cure for cancer, give a girl a chance to be educated about an active + healthy lifestyle, or provide clean water to those who desperately need it, I will feel like I am doing my part to make a difference in someone’s life.
And with that, I ask you:
Who or what is your inspiration? How would you go about making a difference in someone else’s life?