Can you remember the last time you were a beginner at something?
It’s hard. It’s plain hard, especially, when you know what you were once capable of doing on a regular basis.
I’m a lifelong mediocre athlete. I played high school tennis, but solidly held onto the 4th singles slot. I was and still am a non-competitive dancer, a jazz baby, middle school tapper, and I picked up ballet late in life. I continued to dance in my university’s no-cut Repertory Dance Group for three years and have again recently picked up tap.
JV Cross Country instilled in me the idea that I CAN run and it IS fun. The golden rule for running is to find your pace partner and don’t push yourself before you’re ready. Because of my jack-of-all trades upbringing, I was always in decent shape, had strong legs, and was never injured.
It’s now that I’m almost four years out of undergrad and I sit at a desk 9-5, with little overall movement. Similar to the mermaids cursed by Ursula in The Little Mermaid–my baby muscles shriveled. After last year’s PNW Ragnar Relay I let my slightly injured hip/knee go and escalate from annoyance to injury.
Here’s photographic evidence of the first appearance of the hip injury.
I’m back to a beginner status.
I can’t do a real push up.
Squatting the bar is hard.
Running 3 miles without creaky knees is an accomplishment.
But, I’m glad this happened.
It’s gives me perspective on how I once had to work to my personal best. When I can run 6 miles with ease, I’ll appreciate the accomplishment and remember the hours of strength training and rainy day runs.
It’s a time reestablish what my new norm is as a 26, nearing 27 year old, without dwelling only what I was at 23. Eight hours at a desk is a vastly different lifestyle than 3 hours of class a day and walking all over a college campus.
I plan to shoot off fireworks and ring cowbells when I run my casual 10 minute miles without gasping for air.
If you don’t use it you, you lose it,and i’m ready to rediscover what i’m capable of doing.
When did you last feel like a beginner?