Finding My Inner Athlete

By Matt Sims

This past Saturday, I ran my first spartan race, something I’ve been training 4 months for. Initially, it was a way of getting back into shape but in reality, it meant much more than that. For most of my life, I haven’t been able to accept my body for what it is. Being a naturally lean guy no matter how much I ate exposed me to a lot of name calling and questioning from people who think size directly translates to athleticism. My athleticism was constantly in question. Was I strong enough to make the play? Was I big enough to take the hit? None of that ever mattered to me but that doesn’t mean it didn’t effect me.

I was constantly questioning how much of a “man” I was just because I was skinny. This lack of confidence followed me around on and off the field. In early October, this started to really bother me. After getting off the scale, I was the lightest I have been since sophomore year of high school. My eating habits were terrible and I was beginning to get nervous about what was happening to my body. After finding out about Spartan races, I promised myself I would try to change my daily habits for the better and signed up for the race at Greek Peak.

Here we are 4 months later. In these past 4 months, I’ve managed to put on 17 pounds since I initially started training. My confidence is through the roof and I’ve never been more proud of myself. Most importantly, I love how I look and feel.

No matter what you are doing in life, don’t do it for the sole purpose of inspiring others. I did this for me. Not for any of the name callers. Not to have people gas me up. I just did it for me and I’m damn proud of myself.

I can’t thank @spartan and @elevatesyracuse enough for taking me on this journey. I’m just getting started…

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