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Monday, May 6, 2013


I have added to my running repertoire since last year's great treadmill experiment; now I am running outside.

This is a major step forward for me. I have tried many times to be an outdoor runner and it just didn't click for me. Today, I am not a runner who makes it look easy but I am a runner who is outside enjoying fresh air and the sights and sounds of my neighbourhood.

It's been just over a month since I started running outside and sometimes it has been a real struggle to keep one foot moving in front of the other. When I have those moments, when I think of how easy it would be to stop, I think of Terry Fox.

I have always considered Terry Fox a hero. One of the few that deserve that label. He struggled through pain and sickness to run his Marathon of Hope.

Since I have been back in Canada I have taken part in the annual Terry Fox Run every September. And since that time I have learned that the Terry Fox Run is held globally including in my old home base, Bangkok.

Terry Fox is a true inspiration, for me as a novice runner and for thousands of other people in many different facets of their lives.

Today I posted his picture on my Facebook page making note that he is my inspiration to take the next step. I did this not only because Terry Fox truly is my inspiration when I am out on the trail but also as a protest. I despise all the fitness inspiring posters that pollute my Facebook feed on a daily basis. The posters generally show a woman, who is in absolute peak physical shape, with some bland inspirational message written in bold script.

The reason I hate these types of posts is that they are unrealistic and once again have women perpetuating unreasonable expectations on the female body. These posters are a sort of pornography that we are spreading among ourselves. It's unhealthy and I wish it would stop. Like the porn industry, these pictures are distorting the female body; what it is and what it can be.

And to add a little more fuel to the fire—we don't even know these women in these pictures. I doubt they are women with jobs and families. These bodies are achieved through hours of training a day; that is if they are true depictions and not an airbrushed fantasy. Most women don't have that much time to invest in their bodies and some will give up on exercise if they find themselves failing to meet this unrealistic depiction of how a physically fit woman should look.

I want to be inspired by real people, with real lives. I am inspired by Terry Fox and if you want to inspire me to exercise with a post on Facebook, upload a picture of yourself doing your body some good. I know you and I will respect you and be inspired by what you are doing.I'm not inspired by some gym bimbo I don't know who doesn't have a life outside of the gym.

I know some of my friends who post these types of pictures on Facebook may disagree—but I ask you to post pictures of yourself and see how much more inspiring that can be.

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