So I just turned 49 a few weeks ago. My youngest daughter pointed out some aging points to me: such as you know you're old when you sprain your wrist brushing your teeth (and yes that happened to me 2X in the past year. You strain your back buckling your shoes in the morning (and yes that happened a couple of weeks ago to me as well).
Yes, my knees creak and my hips pop but I am in the best shape of my life, ok most days. I have been able to push the boundaries of what "I" thought I was physically able of. I plan to "RUN" my first 5K for my 50th birthday next year…but what am I really capable of?
So, to give you a little background, I have been overweight, obese and yes, morbidly obese for the majority of my teens and adult life. I hated gym class as a kid and took Yoga and Pilates in college to meet my PhysEd requirements. Don't get me wrong; there is nothing wrong with Yoga and Pilates, I love them both. But I figured that if I could meet my college requirements of PhysEd by lying on a mat, those were the classes for me.
So here I am decades later with a new a body that can move, that can lift weights and yes look damn good in a little black dress (according to my husbands' eyes). Knowing that, what do I do with this person who is half the size she was for most of her life? I always envied people who could run a marathon, ski down a mountain (not that I am ready to send myself flying down a mountainside, yet), you know, "The Athletes".
Last night my oldest daughter asked me if I would consider doing the AidsLifecycle bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles next year (2011) with her. It's a 6-day, 600-mile bike ride. No, she's not an athlete, she does have over 100 pounds to lose and pending back surgery. But she got me thinking, can I physically and mentally do such a ride at the age of 50. I know lots of people over the age of 50 take on such challenges. Am I up for it? Can I see myself training for such a bike ride for the next year, plus? This type of challenge would certainly out do any 49 burpies at the gym.
My bike has rested in the garage for several years. My excuses for not doing this challenge have really no merit other than the mind game. This has got me thinking. It would be the biggest, longest and hardest physical challenge.
So today, this week, the rest of this month I will ponder, dream and wonder. I need to remind myself of my two mentors (1) A journey of a thousand steps begins with a single step, and (2) One just needs to set the goal. Even if we don't succeed, it's the effort that counts.