Archive for pageant

Let your light shine!

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 27, 2014 by runmyssierun

“Is that you Myssie?”

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I had just gotten out of the pool and finished my run/swim brick when I saw an old friend and greeted him with a big, wet, sopping hug. It had been a few years since we had talked and caught up quickly under the beating sun by the pool.

“I was worried for you for a while. Just a few years ago you were on top of the world in Real Estate and at Rotary Club.” He beamed a huge smile when he said that.

“But then it was like the weight of the world was on your shoulders. And you bounced back. I see it every day but you probably don’t. You have touched so many people with what you have done. Don’t ever forget that.”

He went on to tell me that he’s heard of so many women who had similarly taken a back seat to their family once they reached a certain age or pivotal point in their lives. He also said that those same women saw what I was doing and challenged themselves to attempt their own similar goals regardless of their age or athletic background. His words were so validating to the laps I had just finished and the goal that swam around in my head. THANK YOU PATRICK!!!

Most of my life (with the exception of my pageantry years), I sat on the side lines in the stadium stands cheering on those I loved and taking photographs of them doing awesome physical feats. Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought I would be doing what I’m doing today. I am lucky – seriously lucky – that I entered this journey with some highly experienced athletes that had incredibly generous, patient hearts. They understood my personal goals. They respected them and never once tried to alter them. They were MY goals.

I had a goal many years ago to become Miss Texas and then Miss America. I was fixated on it. In four years, I entered 22 pageants and won or placed finalist in 20 of them. The only 2 that I didn’t place or win was Miss Texas. I was really really good at winning. I was uber competitive. So much that I became another person. I was constantly checking out the other competition, reviewing their stats and videos, finding their weakness and making that my strong point. I became that wicked evil girl that pageant reality tv shows spotlight for the drama and ratings.

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And that really wasn’t who I was but it was quickly who I was becoming. Thank goodness for Julie and Noe who both sat me down and opened my eyes about their friend they missed inside of me. Noe’s words in the courthouse parking lot will forever echo in my head… “Why are you ALWAYS comparing yourself to them?”

I aged out of pageantry, retired and hung up my heels but went on to “train” countless winners successfully with that lesson in mind. “Don’t compete against the others. Compete against yourself. Make yourself a better person.” And that’s exactly how my pageant trainees won.

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These women didn’t find a characteristic about another contestant to make fun of while saying it was all fun and games. They didn’t use passive aggressive antics to play with the minds of other contestants nor spread gossip and innuendo around the contestants. They won on their own merit… not by trying to dim the light of the others.

Your light does not shine brighter by dimming the light of others.

Long story short(er)… I understand that some people thrive on competition. I, however, DO NOT. I do not like who I become when my ruthless, competitive spirit emerges. It takes great effort to muffle that person that I did not like within myself (nor did anyone else like).  I am a goal oriented person. My focus is on MY finish line… not someone elses. My goals are measured by me, internally, by small incremental babysteps that go in one direction… FORWARD. So that when I fall, when I fail to achieve that step I was planning on, I know how to get back up and keep moving because I’ve been there already.

Larisa, my Matron of Honor, at my wedding almost 20 years ago!!!

Larisa, my Matron of Honor, at my wedding almost 20 years ago!!!

On Tuesday, I was able to put those mental blinders on my Matron of Honor, Larisa, as she ran two miles with me for the first time. She was inundated with the same fears we all have.

  • I’m too old to run this fast
  • I’m too old to run this far
  • I’m too fat to run this fast
  • I’m too fat to run this far
  • I’m too out of shape to run
  • I haven’t run since high school
  • My knees hurt
  • My ankles hurt
  • My hip hurts

I stayed by her side the entire time and put my iPhone on my arm with the speaker towards her. “Keep the pace of the music and we’ll be just fine. Pump your arms and keep your hands above your waist at all times otherwise you’ll get chorizo fingers at the end of the first mile.”

“YES!!! I do get chorizo fingers!!!” she exclaimed. That’s when the light bulb turned on and she gained faith in that I knew a little bit about what I was talking about.

“Ok, we’re going to jog from here to the light pole and then walk to the next but still keep our hands relaxed and up. You’re going to feel yourself losing your breath. That’s ok. Sing or whisper Mary had a little lamb. Trust me. I know it sounds crazy but it will get your breathing back to normal.” Ya, I think I lost her trust on that one.

I kept her stride short like the marathon shuffle and the conversation shorter so she didn’t feel pressured to talk and show the embarrassment of losing her breath to me because I know I am embarrassed to hear my own gasping breath. I needed her to finish this with strength and confidence to come back and double what she did today the following week.

Those last two light poles she hit the fastest pace she ran the whole time! She ended her two miles strong and fast and our conversation ended with the topics of glide and sports bras. SHE DID IT! SHE DID IT! And then she joined the rest of the gang for a beer. *I went home 😦

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It doesn’t matter what your limitations are. With the right people around you who understand and share and/or respect your goals, anything is possible. A few people can do this all by themselves. I am not one.

Like I said before, some people thrive off of competition. I do not. I thrive off of the positive energy and enthusiasm of those around me who also have big goals. There is a BIG difference.

If you are considered a friend of mine, please, know that I will never compete against you. If you try to force me to compete, I will either distance myself from you or let you beat me by not putting forth effort… or both. Beating you is not my goal. Beating CANCER is. 

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So to clarify, my next event is not including fundraising for a cancer organization. It is to make myself a better person inside. I am still healing and thankful that I have found a healthy outlet to do so for myself and my family. I have to do this one for myself so that I can know that I can keep moving forward. I fell off the horse at CapTexTri. This is me getting back on the saddle again. I gave my goals to my coach. In a nutshell, my goal is just to finish it.

That’s all I need to make me happy with myself again. Just finish it.

And then I’ll get back to my promise to Sissy and Momma in the right state of mind, love in my heart and surrounded by good, supportive people.

 

I’m just so fat.

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 13, 2013 by runmyssierun

Had to share this conversation. I was talking with a couple of other women about beginning a running routine together (we’ve known each other for years and the conversation went deep into our insecurities)

Friend 1: Myssie, I wish I could do the things you do. I’m just so fat. I know if I asked you, you’d go with me but I’d feel so guilty holding you back.

(I didn’t even have a chance to respond before I was beat to the punch)

Friend 2: You are NOT FAT! You HAVE fat. Do NOT let it define you!!!

This is what great friends do for each other. We remind each other who and what we are when we forget how fabulous we truly are inside!!!

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When I was 18, I entered my first pageant and won. I entered 21 more pageants after that and won or placed runner up in all but two of them up until the age of 24. Prior to this, I never really thought I was FAT but being thrown into a world where you pranced around on stage in a bathing suit and heels suddenly made you re-think body angles in ways you never thought before. I was obsessed with my body image in my early 20’s and it probably led me into a world of unhealthy decisions… eating disorders.

Even worse… every one around me at the time seemed to be obsessed and guilty of the same thing so the behaviors seemed normal and encouraged.

Hindsight, yes, I had a killer looking body!!! Funny now because I’m still not jealous of anyone else’s body (except Demi Moore and Jennifer Aniston). I’m jealous of the body I used to have. In my eyes, I don’t think anyone else could ever compare to 23 year old me.  I say this because only I knew how my curves and rock hards could measure up against Demi’s or Jennifer’s… and they paid big bucks for trainers and plastic surgeons for their bodies. I didn’t. BUT… that was then… this is now.

Back then, I was my own worse judge and didn’t have a clue how blessed I was to have the body I did. I was never happy with my body and always seemed to want to change this or that. I was too consumed by comparing myself to this girl and that girl. I was young and stupid.

Now, I am older and wiser. I can do things now that I would never have thought possible as prissy diva 23-year old me. I will never wear my Bud Girl dress or swim suit – nor should I at this age (just because you CAN fit into something doesn’t mean you SHOULD wear it). I will never wear the bikini I wore to Miss Texas USA. Child birth, gravity and life have taken it’s toll on my body and it will never be the same. I’ve accepted that. I’m ok with it. But I hope that I will never return to the size I was two years ago even though I still do not consider myself obese at that time (I was a size 14 in the before and a size 4 in the after – I am a size 6 now). Clearly, I was not optimally healthy but not just because of my SIZE. I was eating to cope with the depression and anxiety of dealing with so many family members battling cancer. I am grateful that I have found a healthy outlet for my stress.

ME Before and After

ME
Before and After

I guess what I’m trying to say – and not doing it well enough – is that I had my own perception of what being fat was. I think that perception varies from person to person and even more so over time as well.

I was guilty of limiting myself and my abilities because of this perception that had a strong hold over my behavior. I allowed it to dictate my limits. I let it tell me that I couldn’t wear this or shouldn’t do that and could NEVER achieve the bucket list dream I had. 

I was never a double zero. And get this… I know.. big shocker… I WILL NEVER BE A DOUBLE ZERO!!! But that doesn’t mean that I can’t climb Mount Everest, or write a novel, or be a great mother, or successfully cook a holiday feast, or run for elected office, or manage a fruitful business, or look forward to retirement, or race in how ever many marathons, triathlons or century rides I wish to compete in, or … reach that bucket list dream = Kona.

Fat does not define me. Nor should it define YOU.

I will likely carry around a little bit around my belly and hips though because I suffer from noassatall disease for the rest of my life.

We all have different perceptions and goals. Personally, I adore Maria Kang!!! Will I ever look like her again? Probably not. Will I ever stop trying to look like her? I hope I never stop trying.

But what is key is that just because you LOOK a certain way, doesn’t necessarily mean you are healthy. Someone else could be a perfectly healthy size double zero. But me… I’m a healthy size 6. And you could quite possibly be a completely healthy size 10.

P.S. Every time someone posts those “motivation” pictures on their facebook status, the evil sarcastic girl in my head chomps at the bit to burst out and bust a bubble…

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Honestly, when was the last time you saw a girl in a bikini and heels lift weights at the gym… The caption on the picture cracks me up!!! “Lift Heavy”?? Really, how many plates you think she’s got? Come on!  Don’t fall for that. I’ve got TRUE crossfitters and body builders that I work out with that scoff at this picture. It’s an insult to all their hard work. This isn’t “motivation”, this is soft porn. Don’t let it mess with your mind.

And guys, if you’re reading this.. it goes for you, too. It goes both ways.

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