Who Inspires You?

I went for a run today after taking almost a week off due to hamstring problems. During the week I received a massage that was fairly deep and left me a bit tender for two days. I also went to someone who performed Muscle Activation Techniques to re-balance weak muscles at their origin and insertion points. I was hoping that after all of this, my muscles would feel relaxed even if my body itself felt a bit heavy for not running for a few days.

I ran on a relatively flat trail to pamper my hamstring, and was trying to be patient while my body recalled how to run. After 1.5 miles I passed a woman who was walking. She was about 30 pounds overweight, but she still looked like an athlete. She was dressed for the hot, dry weather, carried hydration and was walking with purpose. I continued on my run and at around 3 miles I turned around. The trail headed uphill and I could feel soreness in the belly of my hamstring. I looked up and saw the lady jogging downhill. As she approached me she took out her iPod ear buds, and began to say something. I turned off my iPod to hear her: “…you inspire me! You make it look so easy.” My response was, “No way! You’re crazy. You are doing it…”  We both put our headphones back in and continued jogging, and I realized I had just missed an opportunity to encourage someone and spread the karma we all share as athletes.

I kept thinking to myself she was paying me a compliment, but I was too engulfed in my hamstring issue. As far as I was concerned, I was shuffling along at a pace that was barely a jog and I did not feel strong at all. However, she saw me differently.

I kept looking back, hoping I could give her a thumbs up or some form of encouragement, but realized I lost my chance. I wish I said, “Thanks….but look at you!  You are doing great – keep up the good work.”  At that moment, she inspired me. Even though I was feeling my hamstring during the rest of my run, I didn’t complain about it in my head. I thought of her instead. She was out there, putting in the time and energy to make a healthy change. She was not self-involved, but instead spreading good karma. I want to be more like her.

I wonder who inspires you?

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