"If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves."
-Thomas EdisonIn March, I made a proposition to myself. I challenged myself to prepare for a mile race at Alley Fest in my hometown. It sounded like an awesome idea at the time. I mean, sure I sometimes don't have the strength to open my water bottle... but how much more difficult would it be to push myself a mile?
It's only a month away and have I prepped at all? Uh... no.
Not even a little.
I always try to exude confidence in my daily life. However, when it comes to hitting the gym or doing anything physical, I feel about three inches tall. A few weeks ago I opted to skip hitting the pool and decided to go upstairs to check out the REAL "gym." I spotted a cycling machine and decided to try it out. I mean, I pedal at home all the time, so it can't be that difficult. WRONG. First, I couldn't get the blasted thing to turn on. I struggled with it for about 10 minutes (which stretched into what felt like three weeks). Once I finally got the machine turned on I transferred from my wheelchair and attempted to cycle, but it was way too hard. I strained against the resistance as hard as I could, but it was hopeless. I felt people staring. Judging me for my lack of washboard abs and buns of steel. After about two minutes I booked it out of there and didn't look back.
I haven't been back to that floor since.
The problem? The indoor track resides there- circling around all the weightlifting benches, cycling machines, and elliptical contraptions. Every time I consider going and practicing on the indoor track, I freeze. I know that those same people will be there. I will be the less in-shape girl gasping for air and she rolls around in circles at the gym. Senior citizens will be jogging laps around me, "wheel in your own lane, little girl."
But then I read Edison's words. I realize now that I don't know what I'm really capable of because I haven't tried. I may surprise myself. I may be able to do a half, or even a whole mile on my first try. And even if I can only do one lap around the gym, at least I tried my best. And no one can judge me for that. Even if people scoff at me for going so slow, what does it really matter? It doesn't!
I decided to do this race. And I am determined to do it. I am determined to 'astonish' myself by pushing myself to reach my full potential. I am conquering that track and in a month, I will attempt to conquer the race. Even if I don't finish, at least I know I gave it my best. If I chickened out and didn't do it, I would always wonder 'what if.' My life already has too many of those. I need to make less bargains with myself and more promises.
And I AM doing this race.