On Monday I wanted a cookie. I wanted a cookie so bad. And there were so many just laying out in front of me. Some were peanut butter, which are my favorite. Others were chocolate chip, which are my ultimate favorite. In my mind, I told myself, “Come on. It’s just one cookie. It won’t hurt. You’ll still be on track to your goals.” But I’ve been at this point before.

You see, last week was my Spring Break and for half of it, I was out of town in Seattle, WA. Prior to my trip, I debated if I wanted to work out and stay on track while I was there or if I wanted to take a break from routine and just lay about. I had read somewhere before that if you take more than 3 days off, it’ll be hard to get back on track. I was afraid of that so, the week before my trip, I decided that I would have to get in some sort of fitness during my time away. I couldn’t afford to have a setback. My trip lasted from Saturday up until Wednesday afternoon. I decided that that Monday and Tuesday, I would work out and then, to make up for missing Wednesday, I would use the 5K fun run I signed up for my first Saturday back in Texas as my 5th workout session that week. That was that. It was a done deal.

My plan wound up working wonderfully and I stayed on track despite going out of town. Food, on the other hand, I deviated on. I broke my “No eating out during the weekdays” rule and ate out on Wednesday and Thursday. On top of that, I had sweets more than I would have liked. Needless to say, I was on a path of self-destruction. Truth is, I was stressed. Stressed about traveling. Stressed about school. Stressed about work. Stressed about graduating from college in May. And I was about to let myself succumb to that stress by eating sweets convincing myself each time that it would be just this once. How many “just this once” incidents does it take for me to realize that it really isn’t just this once? Usually, it would take several incidents. This time, it only took one. The cookies.

There I was, on a Monday, facing my enemy. Not the cookies. The enemy was myself. I longingly looked at the cookies trying to convince myself that it would be “just this once” but then the logical side came out of me and said, “No it won’t. Keep walking.” And I did.

Throughout my whole 'fitness journey' thing, I have learned that it’s me versus me. All those times I want to give up on running or all those times I want to eat a cookie or succumb to my cravings are classic examples of me trying to bring myself down. I’m afraid of my own abilities. I know that if I keep pushing myself, I will get better at seamlessly living a healthy lifestyle. I know that every time I push myself, it’s going to get harder. That scares me and I’m afraid of failure. But, in all of this, I know that it’s okay to be strong. It’s okay to gain new abilities over time. I won’t let me defeat me.

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how i learned to put the cookie down