|Race pic from last summer's Hottest Half. |
One of my favorites ever.
|Cheering on my buddies at the Hobble Gobble, November 2010|
If you've run or raced with me, you know I always insist, nay DEMAND, that we get a pic before, or preferably, after a run or race. It feeds my ego to know that hey, not only do these people know me, but they aren't ashamed to take a picture with me and have proof of it!! (SIDEBAR: I have a very fragile ego that requires constant stroking.) So I always have tons of pics of me with other friends and runners. And in those pics, I always try to turn my head just so, and suck in my gut, or turn sideways so that if it is a whole body shot that I look somewhat athletic. But the thing about races is that they often have photographers out on course. And sometimes you know where they are so you can make sure you're actually running when they take the shot, or you can be certain you're not blowing a snot rocket at that point in time, or you can try to look as cool and effortlessly smooth as possible. But sometimes, you don't know that they are there, or you are so focused on the task at hand that you don't notice them as you run by. So they tend to capture you at your most bare & honest moments during a race. And very often, when I see my race photos, I cringe.
|Tyler Rose Marathon, 10-10-10|
|Gorgeous scenery at Banderawesome...|
|becomes this, to better hide my body.|
|Wearing my beltpack in front distracts from my mid-section. |
Kinda. Sorta. Not really...
And Yvonne's post made me think long and hard about my acceptance of my body, flaws and all. I don't know how many situps and pushups and more miles it will take to get me to look on the outside like the athlete I feel like on the inside. I don't know that it will ever happen. I do know that I am going to continue to work out and run and later this summer, cycle and swim, and embrace the athlete inside me, even if she is wearing a body that doesn't quite fit. And the next time I see a race photographer out on course, I will smile and hook 'horns, and worry less about the outer image captured and instead celebrate the spirit of the athlete inside.