I just finished my 207th workout in this 260 challenge. It was an intervals workout and my fastest 2 to 4 mile every (according to runkeeper). Each personal best running is a source of astonishment to me. I have never run. Ever. As a kid I didn’t run and if I ever made the mistake to do so I learned very quickly to not. I was born with femoral anteversion, which actually for me at least is a very minor issue. It basically means I am knock-kneed. No not due to weak this or that as an occasionally badly trained PT or
yoga teacher will try to suggest, it’s an inward rotation of the thigh bone. This means for me to bring my knees inline is the equivalent of a person with straight femurs turning hips and knees out, to bring my hips and knees into an outward turned position is the equivalent of a straight femured person turning their knees, hips and feet out to an extreme position that actually places the knees under strain. I have to explain this quite frequently in exercise settings. It causes me no pain, no loss of leg movement. In fact it’s purely an aesthetic issue, as in the world expects everyone to look the same and gosh darn if you aren’t there will be trouble.
This made school quite hellish for me, add that to the fact I’m pale (this was the 80s in the North East everyone was orange) and have an accent that’s not quite northern. I was bullied, very bullied. If I ever ran I was openly laughed at, because guess what knock kneed people run knock kneed. I know astonishing. So I didn’t run, which probably made me quite unfit therefore if I did then run I was slow and knock kneed. Oh the horror and hilarity for the children around. I lost all faith in my body and developed a great deal of shame. I as I grew up I hid in baggy trousers and long skirts. It never would have occurred to me that I could run. I had no faith in my body to be able to anything like that. As for wearing shorts in public with not only my knock-knees but pasty skin exposed. Well that would have made me feel physically sick.
So as across this year I took up running and am actually becoming ok at it I’ve been quite astonished that I could actually do it. For me each personal best is not just a running achievement but a screw you to the people who laughed at me for being different, to the people who still laugh at others for being different.
My short shorts are especially a screw you to those who made me ashamed of my legs. Yes I’m knock kneed in fact I happily #knockkneedrunner on my Instagram posts. Why should I be ashamed of it. My legs are awesome, they are strong, flexible and getting not too shabby at running too. I will do exactly as I damn well please and if you want to laugh as I run past you go ahead I’m too old to have other people’s opinions rob me of the ability to either love myself or do something I want to.
Love from the