Well, I've been running in the rain, doing pushups and ab work in the mud, and running... running... running. Insanity? No. I decided it was time for my next personal challenge. With encouragement from an instructor friend, I signed up for Operation Bootcamp at Grant Park here in Atlanta.
Eliminating the gluten that ravaged my system and the first sixty five pounds I lost with my amazing trainer Drew Dinwiddie was a cakewalk compared to my latest venture. I thought I was in decent shape. I've been working on the Couch to 5K Running Plan using the C25K App for iPhone, and I thought my success at that would prepare me for this bootcamp.
Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
Our first camp began in the rain. Not just sprinkles, but Atlanta rain. Those heavy, hard rain drops that blow sideways in your face. Nothing could have prepared me for this, I realize. As one of the instructors encouraged me today while doing my fourth plank in a row (after many many other exercises), "it wouldn't be called bootcamp if it wasn't hard."
While it is indeed hard and I feel every little ache and pain in my joints from the chronic joint pain that most celiacs and gluten intolerant individuals suffer from, it's proved to me that just when I think I can't do it...I can. I really can! I admit to being one of the last in every run, struggling with every single exercise, and having a lot of self doubt (I'm working on that), but at the end of the workout, I'm not dead. I'm not lying in bed with terrible unexplained stomach pain and chronic fatigue. Feeling sore muscles is somewhat thrilling because that means they're actually getting used again.
I'm finally doing this. As week one of camp comes to a close, with three weeks left, I feel optimistic. I truly feel like if I conquer this, I can accomplish just about anything I set my mind to. Will I cut my mile run time in half? Probably not. Will I leave as strong as I need to be? Nope. But I'm on my way. Feeling happy, healthy, and truly alive will get me there eventually. My journey is fun, and I'm proving that to myself every day.