By Grace O’Malley.
Reflections of an Ex Runner
I used to pride myself on having a superior body image. I loved my body and was pretty confidently more confident then many other girls and women I knew. I had no problem running in spandex and a sports bra—just the opposite: I couldn’t wait to. Everyday that I trained I became a little bit more fit, and I loved my body just a little bit more.
But I was a collegiate athlete who trained six days a week–of course I loved my body. I was working my ass off on the track, in the pool, on the bike, and in the weight room. I was fast, fit, and strong. Of course I loved my body.
And I was missing the point entirely. My “confidence” in my body was entirely dependent on the many hours I spent working out. And although my focus was principally on my performance as a runner, the changes to my body that came with becoming more fit did not go unnoticed. I watched my calves get stronger, my biceps get bigger, my abs become more defined. I took note of all these improvements, studying the slightest changes.