Quick challenge update: the last two-and-a-half days I've zigzagged my points exactly: 37 points Wednesday, 26 points yesterday, 35 points today. I ran at 4.5 mph for 15 minutes yesterday morning, then killed myself with the plank exercise (soooo hard). I felt amazing afterward. This morning I ran my 5K, then did my last day of 100 push-ups this week. My abs feel like they've been pummeled and my arms are absolutely dead.
Remember my post last week about my new softball team and how "...even though I'm not much better now than I was then, I'm coming off as a better player by the way I carry myself"?
Well that was a pile of B.S.
At last night's game, I discovered I'm still timid as hell. I actually didn't even play. We brought Cosmo to the game (so he could charm everybody by eating gravel, getting repeatedly tangled in his leash, and trying to swallow a softball), so we arrived late. As I watched our team play in the field for the current inning, I overheard a few members of the team and their friends criticizing poor plays from the sidelines. And I realized, "I don't want these people to be annoyed with me if I play poorly." I mean, I really like this group of people. I think they're hilarious. And I just didn't feel prepared to get out there and have a great game. So I didn't even try.
And the whole time I was annoyed with myself. It's this confidence thing, man. I know I can run. I know I can throw. And I know I can probably catch. But I picture myself out in the field, running for a ball, extending my glove, but not far enough. Or jumping for a ball, but not high enough. Or running up to meet a grounder, but being too timid to glove it. These are all moves I've done in the past. I don't get it. If I'm already lunging for the ball, why wouldn't I extend my glove that last few inches? It's like I freeze. And that type of missed play is the most vexing to onlookers. Last night, the spectators would get so disappointed: "She just needs to get her glove lower!" "There were three of them right there--why did they miss that?"
I suppose on some level it's tied to body image. But I honestly can't explain it. All I know is that I don't see this phenomenon happening to people who have been thin or athletic their whole lives. They know they can trust their body to do exactly what they want it to. They have this trust, this confidence.
I see it in Pete when he zooms around on his rollerblades like they are the only footwear he's ever used, while I'm slowly rolling down a hill, legs locked, butt out, hands in front of me, screaming for him to come stop me. I see it when he's plowing down a hill on his snowboard, while I ride my edge so slowly that I end up stopping early and have to limp my board along the last few meters of the hill. I saw it in our friend Brandon last night, who was running, jumping, rolling to the ball. They're not afraid to fall; they're not afraid to fail. I look at them and think, "I bet I could do that. If only I would."
And I have no idea how to make myself.