The frustration of being without nicotine after quitting smoking was channeled into exercise. Beginning a daily workout regime, my lounge quickly becoming home to my ever growing collection of Jillian Michaels DVDs.
With diet, exercise and hormone therapy I changed. Even with all its flaws, I began to love my body for what it could do and what it had the potential to be. I began to see the strong woman that I could become.
Running started slowly, literally, first walking a short route, then getting the trainers on and taking up a jog. I didn’t really know what I was doing but I was out there doing it. Pushing myself along the ever changing Liverpool Waterfront, I couldn’t ask for a more compelling companion to run alongside. Four years ago I ran my first Race for Life 5k, yesterday I completed my 4th Half Marathon.
I joined Nike Liverpool’s run club. An incredibly supportive, ego-free community, with which I know I will only continue to get stronger. Running has enabled me to pursue other activities that five years ago would have been inconceivable; salsa dancing, snowboarding and swimming (which myself and a friend finally learnt to do just this year!)
As a transgender woman the battle with my body for many years was an internal one, but when I took ownership of it I began to affect the changes I wanted for myself. I was empowered, I allowed myself to be seen and I began to define myself. I’ve found acceptance within myself and the active communities I’ve been a part of and I’d like to encourage others to find their own.