Thirty – Three.
I bet you just opened this blog post and are wondering what I am referring to. Some of you may already know. Here’s the secret: Next month, I am going to be thirty three years old. It really hit me when I registered for my next races and the “age at time of race” said 33. I was stunned. Where did the time go? I feel like it was just last year that I was running (or walking, I wasn’t quite a runner just yet) the streets of my native, Hoboken, NJ, being the kid I was.
I was just a kid what seemed like a year ago.
At almost thirty three here is where I am on my own journey. First and foremost, never, ever compare journeys. My once page one was someone else’s page 500. My chapter 20 is someone else’s chapter two. Life isn’t a race. Slow down. Trust me on this one.
Physically, on my fitness journey, I am in the best shape of my life. During my teenage years and lower twenties, I was overweight. At my highest weight, I was 170lbs on my 5’3″ frame. For me, that wasn’t healthy. In my mid twenties, I started working out but I never knew what exactly my body needed, to form, or take shape. Little by little I started venturing to the “dreaded” weight side of the gym (being a woman, this can be very scary at first, until you realize how to scare off men) and incorporated different types of cardio and HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training). Finding gym partners (or buds as I call them) also opened my mind to all different types of workouts while also holding me accountable. Aesthetically, my body has taken to the form that I am happy with. The best benefit, however, is my health. There is nothing better than FEELING great from the inside out. Always remember: health is on the inside, not the outside.
This is a one year difference. I am not training for anything besides life. I wake up, I work out, I eat well most of the time, I take care of myself for my health.
I also started running. A lot. I never thought I would actually enjoy running to the point that I jump out of bed at 4:30am to run miles on miles on miles. I run in the dead of winter. I run during the hottest days of summer. (I like winter way better.) The physical benefits of running are that my endurance has risen, my body is leaner, and my core is stronger. The best gifts that running has given me are, like any gift, the unseen: The emotional and mental benefits. My mind is sharper, my self esteem and confidence is way higher, my stress levels aren’t as high, my sleep is better (some nights I struggle; I have anxiety, hence, stress levels aren’t as high), my energy is higher, I know how to push myself further. I can also eat. A lot.
Mentally and emotionally I’ve grown into a woman that I never expected to be. It has been an every day struggle to get where I am but I’ve embraced every single moment along the way. I’ve made my mistakes, I am only human, but I am proud of who I am and what I embody. I’ve found out that growth is a very painful process. I’ve found out that things don’t always happen the way you may want them to but, as hard as it is, you have to trust that they were supposed to happen. I’ve made friends that came into my life at the perfect time. I’ve lost friends along the journey. The friends that I’ve had forever, I thank them for being in my life. I’ve become much closer with my family and only in my thirties did I realize that your family are your best friends. (BYE, ANTHONY.) I realized that I am a role model to my nieces so I always watch my moves and what I say since I have eyes looking up to me.
Professionally, well, I will get to that at another time. Things fall into place at exactly the right times. I start a new journey, professionally, next month, as well.
Overall, thirty two was a life changing year for me. It was a year of complete growth, a physical, mental and emotional overhaul, I’ve learned that my vulnerability is my magic, my heart strings were tugged, good things happened, sad things happened, great things happened, if I wanted it to happen, I had to make that s*it happen, and most of all life happened. For that, I am grateful and content.
Thirty three is just six weeks away and I am ready to embrace it the way I embrace an entire pizza to myself. After all, my age and my appetite don’t define me.
Until next week (I promise I will post how I nailed my curls in my latest Instagram selfie).