How Something I Hate Inspired Me to Finish What I Start

Posted: April 6, 2015 in Life Lessons, Weight Loss & Exercise
Tags: , , , , ,

For the past three weeks, I’ve been running again. Yes, again. As in, I stopped running for several months because I was super busy lazy.

I knew I needed to start doing something again because I felt yuck.

It’s funny, in a way, because when I was heavy, I would have given anything to look and weigh what I do now. But now that I’m here, which is a few pounds more than my lowest weight, I feel like a loser-blobby-fat-pants. It’s mostly in my head, and in the sheer terror of facing the possibility of weighing what I used to. Just because I know it’s not what’s best for me and the life I want to live.

So, running. The thing I hate most, but that works the best and is the easiest thing to do. Shoes + outside = running. No excuses.

Oh, but I had them. Lots of excuses. They weren’t doing me any good, so I knew I had to stop hiding behind them.

This time, my family is running with me. Luke runs with me every night. One or more of the kids join in at least every few nights. And I walk and run with my mom twice a week. Not only can I not hide behind my excuses, but I now have several people who talk me into going if I’m trying to talk myself out.

Since I hate running and always have, I made a rule for my self way back in 2012 when I first decided to lose weight. I started running on a treadmill, walking and running until I hit 20 minutes. After a while, once I could run the whole time, I started running outside. Then, I made myself a deal. Once I got myself out the door and started to run, I wasn’t allowed to stop until I got back.

Even if I didn’t run every day, I knew if I did run, I wouldn’t be allowed to wuss out. For some reason, this little Jedi mind trick worked like a charm for me.

If I went running, I was going to damn well keep running until I got home. It was my stubborn self saying, If you start, you’re damn well gonna finish.

That little promise I made carried me through, and I eventually completed two 5k races thanks to my decision to finish what I started. Now that I’ve started running regularly again, I still stick to my guns on this one.

Train Tracks

My unfinished projects seem to lead somewhere like here.

Which led me to thinking . . . why doesn’t this rule apply to other things in my life? There’s other things I’ve wanted to do – some for years – that could use this rule.

Just finish the countless books, stories and even blog posts I’ve started writing. Just finish the paintings that aren’t finished. Just finish the important things I start. Maybe you’re like me, and have dozens of half finished projects just laying around, tucked into closets, or sitting on your computer. I don’t know what realm your unfinished business falls into: maybe scrapbooks, knitting, getting your GED, courses you started, woodworking, home improvement, starting a business, learning a new sport . . . the list is, of course, endless.

I have The Big Two that I keep coming back to no matter how many times I try to escape them: painting and writing a book. Both have come in and out of my life since I was a teenager. Both I’ve tried to give up on.

It didn’t work.

This tells me that these are things I shouldn’t give up on.

Like running, both painting and writing are things I need to finish, because I started. I started years ago when I picked up a brush and I wrote a story, and no matter what was going on in my life in the years since, I’ve gone back to these two passions/annoyances time and time again. They won’t leave me alone.

Now, it’s time to figure out how to finish what I’ve started.

No excuses.

Just start running.

What about you? What is something you have been unable to finish and why? What would motivate you to finish those important things? I’d love to hear from you in the comments!


  1. ignace_s says:

    Building websites as a side-profession. Something I like and keep on trying and excited about every time I start. But finishing one is hard, time and time again…
    Good luck with running again, it might give you the extra energy need

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