“The miracle isn’t that I finished, it’s that I had the courage to start.”
That’s a quote from my favorite running authors, John Bingham. Bingham refers to himself as “The Penguin” because he is a slow runner. Yet he enjoys every minute he’s out on a race course.
I had the pleasure of chatting with The Penguin at the 2008 Country Music Marathon expo. The next day I would participate in my first half marathon. I’m a proud member of the Penguin Brigade because I am an extremely slow runner. It currently takes me a bit more than 3.5 hours to complete a half marathon. But even at that I’m a heck of a lot faster than I was when I was sofa-surfing.
I remember telling Bingham that I was afraid I was too large to participate in the half marathon the next day. Even though I had completed all of the training, including a 12-miler, I was letting body image (and the fact that I still had more pounds to lose) prevent me from being proud of my training accomplishments. He simply looked at me from head to toe and said, “You are not too large. Go out there and have fun.”
And that’s exactly what I did.