Published on August 3, 2012, by meg in real life, Running.

I do not have the body of a long distance runner. I’m curvy and broad and a little overweight. I’m “fat” for a long-distance runner.  I don’t look anything like the runners you see in the Olympics. My body fat percentage is in the 20s, not the teens. I look nothing like what most people think of when they hear the word runner.

Kara Goucher is awesome. I don’t look like her at all.

And yet. I am a runner. In a really fundamental way, it’s become part of my identity and I am so happy to have it that way. I’m sure it will phase out at some point – all things come to an end – but I have a feeling it’s how I’ll define this period in my life when I reflect on it.

And I love, love, love that. Do I wish I were thinner or less curvy? Yes. I’m working on the weight thing, but nothing is going to change the basic shape of my body. Even with the weight, it’s very important to me not to make myself crazy about it. I’m strong and healthy and I can run 10 miles at a stretch in 80 degree weather.

Compared to a ‘real runner,’ I’m crazy slow – that 10 miles is at a slower-than-10-minute pace – but compared to a lot of people, running 10 miles is pretty damn good.

So it’s all relative, is what I’m getting at.

Comparing yourself to other people only ends badly. All you can do is learn to accept yourself as you are and identify what you can do to make yourself healthier and happier without making yourself into a crazy person.