Sunday, February 26, 2017

Its a Marathon not a Sprint- My Marriage to Running

" The marathon can humble you." 
Bill Rodgers

Ah running.....

It's been 15 years since we first met at that class at Run On!
In the beginning I remember being cautious and shy.....after all, you took my breath away.....but the more we hung out together the more comfortable I became.

We've been on many adventures over the years, like that time we crossed the Grand Canyon and back arm in arm, or fighting for that finish at Western States.  We've met inspiring people, witnessed many sunrises and sunsets, and even pulled a few all nighters under brilliant stars.   Sharing those experiences with you has given my life purpose and meaning, and I cannot thank you enough.

It hasn't always been easy though.  You've broken my heart, spirit and body more than once; but those times when we separated made me realize how much I really do love you.  There really is no substitute for the way you make me feel.
And the make up sex!

Speaking of our sex hot and steamy, especially in the summer months!
Sometimes you have to talk me into it, but I always feel better and more close to you after we make love.
I still find you extremely attractive after all these years, and those Tuesday afternoon quickies...well...they keep me smiling for the rest of the day ;)

Now that we're older, there is a lot less pressure to perform and we seem to have come to a comfortable agreement.  I'll take care of my body, and you'll continue to keep those endorphins coming.  Sometimes, we have to make compromises, taking breaks from each other or spending time with other friends...but in the end you know that it's you that I'm coming home to.

Happy anniversary to you- my friend and soulmate.
Here's to many more years of happiness together.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Finding contentment in pork chops, laundry and lice

"How do you measure a year in the life?  Measure in love."

I text:  " I want pork chops for dinner. Do you guys like pork chops?" 
Greg:  "Sure- one of the kiddos may not eat it, but we'll work on that." 
Me:  "Ok- I have one with lice, so I need to do her hair and I have to finish up this laundry, but then I'll go to the store so we can have pork chops with roasted vegetables for dinner. See you soon :) " 

Its Sunday, my only day off  after a 55 hour work week and you can see from the above conversation that I am not sitting around watching episodes of "This is Us" and eating bon bons as I would have liked.  Quite frankly, at this moment, I'm pretty bitter about that.  My child's head is full of crawling lice for the 3rd time THIS school year, I have 5 loads of laundry to do (all of my sweaty workout clothes plus the sheets and blankets that have become a lice casualty), and going to the grocery store on a Sunday ranks right up there in fun with poking my eyes out.
So, I do what all people do when they are feeling overwhelmed:  I take a nap.
And awake to this text:  "Hey- I can go to the store if you want...."

And this is when I realize:  I'm a damn lucky girl.

I got to comb my daughters hair, listen to her stories, and watch her do an uninhibited dance while waiting for the 10 min lice meds to do their stuff.  Cool bonding time- that doesn't happen often.

I have clothes to work out in.  And we have sheets to sleep on.  Oh- and a washer AND a dryer. 

I got to go on a grocery store date with my best friend, and we grilled pork chops on the back porch, and drank wine, and talked.  A lot. 

We ate with the kids until our bellies were full, listened to music that soothed our soul, and slept in a bed of well being. 
Its the best I've felt in a very long time. 

The Dalai Lama once said "Happiness is not something ready made, it comes from your own actions." 
How cool to find contentment in pork chops, laundry and lice. 
Maybe there is hope for kale, work and wrinkles........

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Love is a verb

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return."
Moulin Rouge

Love is a verb. 
It's opening her car door and "Here...wear my jacket."
Dinner is ready, and "I brought wine."

Love is cleaning up messes and chicken soup when you're sick. 
"Want to run with me?" and "it's time for you to get some sleep."
Picking the kids up from practice at 9 pm, and Sonic runs "just because."

Love is concerts, plane tickets and road trips. 
A full tank of gas, surprises and sunsets.
Listening to listen instead of listening to answer. 
Perfect imperfection. 

Love is DO it, SHOW it, BE it. 
Love is action.
Love is a verb. 

Sunday, January 15, 2017

You can stop beating yourself up now.

“Understanding the difference between healthy striving and perfectionism is critical to laying down the shield and picking up your life. Research shows that perfectionism hampers success. In fact, it's often the path to depression, anxiety, addiction, and life paralysis.”
BrenĂ© Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection: Let Go of Who You Think You're Supposed to Be and Embrace Who You Are   

You can stop beating yourself up now. 
There's a pile of clothes on the floor, unopened mail on the countertops and the bed hasn't been made in weeks......
But you have a warm, safe and comfortable home. 

Maybe you don't make as many home cooked meals as you would like, or you ate a cupcake just to stay awake this afternoon, or you decided that giving up coffee would be the equivalent of torture. 
But your belly is full. 

You can stop beating yourself up for the thickness of your waist, or the wrinkles that show themselves when you smile.  For the every day pony tail and your abhorrence of high heels......
Because you are beautiful just the way you are. 

You don't have to be "the best" at everything.  It's ok if you don't work 55 hours a week, or you have a terrible race.   You know that your best attempts at relationships sometimes fall apart, yet you continue to love.........
Because you are a girl that learns from her mistakes. 

Wouldn't you be so much happier if you stopped beating yourself up for your "imperfections"? 
Today, I gift myself with the permission to be human. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Almost 10 lbs happier

"Extremes are easy.  Strive for balance."
Colin Wright

In May of 2015- the week before Ironman Texas, I weighed 122 pounds and had 8% body fat.

I was perhaps in the best "shape" of my life; yet I had a hunger that never quelled, and a thirst that was never quenched.  Loneliness bore a hole in my heart as 9 months of my life was spent waking up before sunrise to train, working 9 hour days, training more, getting very little sleep, and repeating .....
AKA "Groundhog Day".

Training became my second job, and I'm horrified to admit the selfishness that ensued.
Many days were spent running away from pain, but the "bad ass" status that I had reached with my friends fueled my ego.
I finished that Ironman feeling empty and unsatisfied.

Today, a year and a half later, I am 131 and 13% body fat. 
I spend more time with loved ones, and  I've really started to "show up" for work.  Friday night happy hour is spent with friends instead of doing laborious hill repeats on the treadmill. 
I train a little less, give back a whole lot more, and smile much more often. 

Sometimes I work out, and sometimes I go get cheeseburgers with the kids.
I swim, I bike, I run.
I read, go on sushi dates, and revel in intelligent conversation.

I've gained so much this year- almost 10 lbs. towards a healthy and balanced life.
10 lbs of happiness.

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Because you're already there

"Be where you are- because you're already there." 

I did not run the Dallas marathon today.  I didn't even run the half marathon today.
But I did run 8 miles at a 10:30 pace without stopping, feeling extremely grateful for each pain free mile, and relieved that running is starting to feel kind of GOOD again. 

Its funny how your brain works when you run, how you can draw on things from your past that you haven't thought of in years.  Today, the quote that popped in my head was "Be where you are- because you're already there." 
Now, I pretty much heard this quote 3 times a week when my kids were little.  I can barely remember the shirtless, long haired yoga guru on the exercise video, but I do remember thinking how ridiculous it sounded when he would sink into warrior pose instructing us to "be where we are".  The pose hurt a little, and he'd make us hold it for like 3 minutes, and in all honestly it just made me grouchy to "be there".

This morning  I felt a pang of jealousy thinking of my friends who were running half and full marathons.  At mile 6, I didn't like where I was....legs starting to feel heavy, wanting a walk break, "only" running 8 miles today.  But I realized- that's where I am. 
Four weeks ago I was only running about 4 miles at a time with walk breaks.  That's where I was.  And where I will be in 6 months from now will be where I am 6 months from now. 

Today, I am a runner. 
How cool that I'm already there. 

Sunday, December 4, 2016

On Recovery

"RECOVERY:  A return to a normal state of health, mind or strength."
the Oxford Dictionary

The air was chilly, and the trails a bit damp
but the leaves showed how lovely it is to let dead things go.

And both the running and the conversation felt free and longer forced. 
And the ache that once lived in my chest from trying to bulldoze through things not meant for me has given up; turned around and walked away.
The scars on my knee are fading, and my ankle supports my lighter weight. 

Bravely starting to pick up the pace, taking more chances,  jumping over hurdles....... I understand that life gave me the break I needed.

Smiling, I know I'm fully recovered.