I don’t count on motivation or enthusiasm to keep me active. Those things, like energy, wax and wane. Even vanity doesn’t quite do the trick. I don’t always care how good looking I may or may not be. Especially when the alternative is binge watching Breaking Bad (again) with a smoothie in-hand.
The thing that keeps me lacing up my sneakers and getting out the door is gratitude. To be clear, I am not an overly or naturally grateful person. I’m keenly aware of inequity, especially as it relates to me 🤷🏼♀️. I get sad or tired and want to crawl into a cocoon until things magically improve. No, that never works.
In 2014 I was diagnosed with breast cancer (and then again in 2017) at the age of 43. I was a dedicated runner at the time. Overnight, I went from a physically active and otherwise healthy person to near infirmity. I underwent a year of surgery and treatments that left me debilitated. In the next four years I would undergo 8 more surgeries. Cancer brings a lot of attendant issues that aren’t apparent to the casual observer.
I couldn’t run anymore. My life since has been a series of recoveries punctuated by new challenges. Right now, I am well. I’ve learned not to look too far ahead, it’s unknowable.
Which brings me to why gratitude is such a reliable and powerful concept. I am able to use my body to hike, swim, run, and walk. This year, I’ll take up skiing again. I feel fine, and that means I get to participate.
The thing I tell myself is:
“there will be a day my body fails me, today is not that day”
Next issue I tackle intermittent fasting.