I've always had it in my head that I am not a runner...I am a person that likes to (on the good days) run.
Honestly the biggest hurdle for me, in over coming this mind set, is I never felt like I had a "runner's body"
I looked in the mirror and saw short thick legs, soft belly, untoned arms, and thought no one will ever think I am a runner. It was never a thought that upset me, but just a statement of a fact to myself that I have been living with.
And then something happened.
I went on a solo run last night, something I only do about a quarter of the time I run (I have a running partner for all my long runs and most my runs at work, as well as another running buddy to fill in the gaps). I took a route that was a little more challenging than my normal bike path run, I challenged my body to a faster pace than usual. As I ran I focused on my body, I felt each step, as my thighs contracted and my calves and feet propelled myself forward. My core held firm, keeping my body upright, my posture straight, not allowing me to slump and lose form. I used my arms to power me through the last 1/2 mile sprinting when my legs were feeling weak. I allowed myself to feel my body come to rest as I cooled down, and my muscles lengthen and relax as I stretched.
Last night I realized that it has nothing to do with how I look and everything to do with the amazing ability my body has to carry me for miles, and to orchestrate each step as something more than just putting one foot in front of the other.
Last night I finally embraced my short legs, my soft stomach, my imperfect arms, and accepted the fact that I am a runner, and that I do, indeed have a runner's body, even if its not the one you would ever see on the cover of Runner's World.