Babble: On Being THAT Kid in Gym Class

Late May days always remind me the dreaded day of gym class in elementary school–the day we had to run a mile. The dread I felt for  gym class in those days is impossible to describe. I wouldn’t say I was ever, “obese.” However, I simply grew differently than everyone else in my grade. When the rest of the girls in my class could fit in Limited Too clothing, my too-broad shoulders and ridiculously lanky legs refused to let me do so.

Thus, when it came time to run for gym, everyone would take off with a start. Everyone would be sprinting across a baseball field, and I’d be the kid that had to walk. We weren’t allowed to play dodge ball until we all finished our mile, and it was totally my fault that we didn’t play dodge ball that day. I still turn rosy with embarrassment over the image of it. Little Adelle, already built like a volleyball player, trudging through a field, behind the cute-little-blonde girls, and already-jacked-boys in her gym class.

It was around the beginning of my freshman year of high school that I actually thought to myself, “I’d like to go for a run today,” and put on my shoes to jog around my neighborhood. It was always about a mile and a half, but it was something. By the end of high school, I was able to knock out a 5k no problem.

This year, after graduating from college (YAY) I decided to pick it back up (seeing as I have no free gym to attend any longer…). I started with two miles, then worked my way back into the 5k groove. I was enjoying being outside after our awful winter, I was enjoying listening to some good music, and was overall waking up excited to go for a run. Then, one day I hit 5k, and thought to myself, “Huh, I wonder if I went a little farther?” Before I knew it, I was hitting four miles, no problem.

It was funny, I started thinking about those days in gym class and how embarrassed I was that I had to actually try to accomplish something. I know that the times were different, and at a certain age we all just care less about our image and more about our happiness–but, at the same time, I couldn’t help but think about the drastic difference.

To be honest, I’m happy I was THAT girl in gym class. I was huffing and puffing my brains out, and it sucked and it was embarrassing as hell. However, it taught me that if I wanted something, I had to choose to go out and do it for myself, and not to just try to keep up with the girls in my grade.

I’m excited as all hell to keep up my new habit, even when it’s approximately Satan’s-kitchen-degrees out like today. And, I’m proud that I did something simply because I wanted it for myself.

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