As I was driving home from the hairdresser a few days ago, I felt a post brewing inside of me. There is something about being in the car with God. He says all kinds of things 😉 Anyway, I felt inspired by the journey of someone who works for my department named Freda. She had posted a picture of perseverance and weight loss a few weeks ago and it was on my mind.
As I mulled it over and shaped it in my mind, God said “the fact that she lost weight is not the reason I want you to write this. I want you to write this because of her attitude”. I was not clear on what He meant. He said “do you remember the race you worked back in September?” I did. And then it all made sense.
I was working the Hit the Brixx 10K & 5K back in September of 2013. I was blocking the street by the finish line. All the runners for the 5K had made it in and then all the runners for the 10K made it in. They announced that there was still one female on the course; she was still doing the 5K.
The cones had already been picked up and all the officers on the route had been relieved because she was so far behind. Traffic had resumed its normal pattern and she was told to move to the sidewalk. Freda drove back, with some bananas, to check on her. She came back and said the lady was probably still an hour away, but she didn’t want to be picked up by the paddy wagon. She just wanted to finish. She was easily close to 300lbs, but she wanted to finish.
We waited another 15 minutes or so and then Freda told me to go (I was ready); she would stay. She would stay so that they could keep the finish line up for the woman to walk under; 2hrs 20 minutes and 19 seconds later. Freda said “because I remember what it felt like to start.”
That’s the attitude.
I quickly contacted Freda to get her permission to write this and do a mini interview. Her journey wasn’t easy. She is not one to complain, but in secret, dealt with all the insecurities and self disapproval that we deal with when we don’t like the way we look. When our health is affected by our weight and when our clothes seem to be getting tighter and tighter. When the solution seems so ginormous and unattainable.
Her inspiration came from her doctor telling her that if she got to a certain weight, she wouldn’t have to take any more blood pressure medicine; she couldn’t remember not taking it. Her motivation came from five friends. They began meeting every Monday and Wednesday morning. This was her energy source. They kept her motivated and accountable.
She started with the paleo eating challenge and still implements that today. She has completed a total of eight races and is currently training for the Spartan Race. As I was talking with her she said I have a new lease on life, I have never felt better, this is a whole new level of self love (hence the name of the post). Even though my brain has to catch up to the new me in the mirror.
After taking blood pressure medicine for about 20 years, she was taken off of it! 🙂
I am inspired by her achievement, but I was blessed by her heart. The heart to wait almost 1hr and 20 minutes extra for one woman to be able to pass under the finish line, because she personally remembered what it felt like 🙂