I want flat abs, and I’m not sure why.

I can’t blame Hollywood or the media or peer pressure. 

My husband is innocent too. During the course of nearly 17 years, he has seen my stomach stretched into shapes that defy the laws of physics. He currently thinks I can leap tall buildings in a single bound. So, if he doesn’t have a problem with my flabby abs, why do I?

Can’t I be content with how things are?

I contemplated this while doing crunches on the ridiculously big blue ball in the basement. The reason I desire flat abs is the same reason I wanted to run a marathon: because goals, no matter how great or small, make me feel truly alive.

Without goals, I begin to wither. I physically/mentally/spiritually need a trip to plan, a book to write, or a marathon to run. 

Life is more than shuttling kids to activities—my life has worth too, even if it’s not in mint condition.

I kicked the ball across the room, and as I quivered in plank position while keeping a close eye on the stopwatch, it occurred to me that my quest for meeting high goals, at the core, comes from an ember of low-self worth, which faintly glows inside me.

It is an uneasy feeling, which periodically fans the message:

“I am not quite good enough.”

I used to pray it would go away. For a while, I pretended it went away. When that didn’t work, I took meds to make myself think it went away. Finally, I worked hard to force it away. Despite all my efforts, nothing could completely extinguish it.

Insecurity, once it scorches the land of the heart, cannot be forgotten.

Despite new and more vibrant growth on the surface, the evidence lies forever in the soil record—never rekindled but always revealed if you dig a little.

The strange thing is, without this charred ground, I would not be motivated to reach new heights.

Insecurity is part of me, and I should make peace with that.

After all, without it, I would be a completely different person.

With it, only God knows what I might accomplish.

I may have flat abs someday.


Miles last week: 23

Plan of action: Increase mileage until I’m up to 30 miles a week. Continue physical therapy for the knees. Be faithful to my hand weights and old-school upper-body festivities. Keep philosophizing about my abs.

Weather: We had a week of rain, which turned the lovely snow into mud, whereby I was forced into the dungeon, I mean, basement, to use the treadmill. Then we had a break of sunshine (temps in the upper 40s to low 50s), which makes me feel like I might just go a couple more days without fleeing the country in a gray-sky induced panic attack.

Wildlife: the deer are plentiful, and so are the hunters. To be honest, it’s only one hunter, the Village Hunter, also known as the Jaegermeister (some of you are familiar with that word), who has built a new deer blind. I try to scare the deer away from his lair (I waved at him up there during a run–he waved back), and I am always sure to wear colors not found in the natural world.