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." 
Unknown


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 easy....no 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. 







Sunday, November 27, 2016

Stop wishing. Start DOING

"If you can run 100 miles, you can do anything."
Jennifer Kimble...when facing fear




Living in fear is the same as living in hell. 

Let's say there is something you really want to accomplish- you're even confident that you COULD do it.....but fear whispers  "honey, you're not good enough." 
So for one second you become that defiant  toddler who asks "well why the hell not?" 
But fear, the dictatorial parent that it is put's it's hand in your face and says "don't even try."

So, you settle into acceptance.  Into that monotonous job that is just ok, or that questionable relationship that isn't quite right, or even worse for mediocrity.

But down deep you keep wishing for success. 
For financial security and freedom from worries.
For happiness and satisfaction.
To do more for those who depend on you. 
For finish lines.  For winning. 
For beautiful places and adventure and fun. 
For admiration and leadership. 
For no bullshit. 
For friendship and love. 

So, let's say one day someone comes along that convinces you that the fairy tale is real. That it belongs to YOU and you  DESERVE it. 
So you work a little harder, becoming more confident each day
And you stop wishing and you start doing.
And when the baby steps start adding up......
Action obliterates fear.
And things start CHANGING!
You find yourself smiling more often, so much so that success snowballs into genuine happiness. 

Hell is for non-believers.
Do what you fear, and fear disappears.
For real.












Sunday, November 20, 2016

When You're Happy and You Know It.....

"When you're happy and you know it,
then you're face will surely show it."
Folk song



When you're happy and you know it.....
There are more crinkled smiles
More hello kisses than drive-away goodbyes
More comfortable conversations
More appreciations. 

When you're happy and you know it
There is more abundance.
There are more yeses.... and less maybes.
You have more energy
and more security.

When you're happy and you know it
life is easy
and comfortable
and peaceful. 

When you're happy and you know it
For God's sake.......sing it out loud
and clap your hands. 


Sunday, November 13, 2016

'Cause Life is Short but Sweet for Certain.......

"Celebrate we will
'Cause life is short but sweet for certain.
We're climbing two by two to be sure these days continue.
These days we cannot change."
Dave Matthews


"The meaning and purpose of life is for you to become the best version of yourself."
This simple, yet profound statement from Matthew Kelly's The Rhythm of Life has completely changed my life. 

So many times when feeling lost I have questioned, "Is this the place where I'm supposed to be?   Why did that have to happen?  Am I serving my purpose?" 
But according to Kelly, God's dream for you is to become the best version of yourself. 
That's it! 
Period.

So, about 3 months ago I decided that everyday I would set my intention on being the best version of myself as the day's events unfolded.  Taking one moment at a time, I began to concentrate wholeheartedly on my words, my actions, my thoughts, my reactions.....and asked myself if I was truly being the best version of myself in each moment. 
Sometimes the best version of myself needed to eat, exercise or take a nap. 
Sometimes the best version of myself needed to really listen, or be a friend. 
Sometimes the best version of myself needed to meditate or chill.
Sometimes the best version of myself needed to dig deeper at work.
And sometimes the best version of myself meant choosing love over fear. 

And wow-  things have changed. 
I made the decision that mediocrity was unacceptable in my relationships and at work, allowing me to flourish.
I learned to treat my body with respect, to take lunch breaks and days off.   To better listen for when to push and when to back off.  To love the skin that holds my soul.
I've apologized.  I  made the phone call that needed to be made 3 years ago.  I ask more questions, and I've reached goals once thought unattainable. 

It makes perfect sense.  You no longer need to wander around aimlessly! 
Every day, every hour, every minute mindfulness can lead to the discovery of who we are. 
In the words of Robert Louis Stevenson, "To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming is the only end of life."  You were born to become the best version of yourself.
Celebrate.  For life is short but sweet for certain........
 







Wednesday, November 2, 2016

You had the power all along......

"In the end only three things matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you."  
Buddha

Some things just weren't meant to be.

I've always thought that if I worked enough, loved enough, or gave enough that I could make a square peg  fit into a round hole.  Relationships, jobs, people, places....they come in and out of your story on a daily basis.  But sometimes we get stuck on the same chapter- therefore never finishing the book.

When I let go of the characters, settings, plots and conflicts that no longer served me, moving on to the next chapter became effortless.   I've literally watched my amazing story unfold with infinite possibility.

I more easily love.
Because I am no longer filled with uncertainty or anxiety I have more to give to my family, my clients, work and writing.  As I am fulfilled, my wish is that all persons understand their infinite potential.   As my energy surges, I smile with ease, my heart bursts, my adoration grows.
There is less jealously, hurt and egocentricity.
More love means more LIFE!

My spirit is has become gentle.
I find balance and control in my everyday routine.  I strive to live simply, leaving a small footprint every where I go. My heart is soft and more compassionate. My life is positive and satisfying.
Its easier to lift others up, to have grace, to forgive.
For the first time in a very long time, I feel peace in both movement and stillness.
I waltz with grace, and rock with awe.

My life has changed for the better.
The drama has been replaced with a romantic comedy.
The satire has become an homage.
Fiction.....non-fiction.

You are in control of your story.  Know that.  BELIEVE that.
For as the good witch told Dorothy at the end of a beautiful story called the Wizard of Oz:
"You had the power all along my dear."
You just had to find it out for yourself.




Wednesday, October 12, 2016

On Gratitude

"If the only prayer you said in your whole life was 'thank you',
that would suffice."
Meister Eukhart




Dear God-
Thank you . 

For those who make us smile, and our souls dance. 
For happily ever after, and fearless love. 

For lists, agendas and bills paid. 
For busy and complicated; for hurry up and wait. 

For chocolate birthday cake with sprinkles, bad jokes and karaoke.
For football games, and picnics and bonfires on the beach.

For persistence and endurance
For uncertainty and faith. 

For packing, for the journey, for adventure.
For hikes through crunchy leaves, bold Cabernets and Patagonia vests.

For Serenity.
For Freedom.
For dog breath. 

For children, and lovers
co-workers and best friends.

For this life, my life-
Thank you God.

Friday, October 7, 2016

What is your genius?


"You see, I believe that we are all capable of doing one thing better than any other person alive at this time in history."
Matthew Kelly

What is your genius? 
Do you know?  Are you too humble to say? 
Or maybe you are afraid that you are powerful beyond belief? 

I have a friend who is a genius at making everyone feel special.  She listens-  REALLY listens, and makes you believe that you are significant.  That you MATTER. 

Another friend is a genius at staying present.  He lives every day aware and with gratitude.  He knows that we live in a wonderful world, and that each moment is just as it should be.

I have a friend who is welcoming.  He takes pictures with everyone he runs with, and posts them on Facebook each week.  He never forgets a birthday.  You know when you are around him that he will accept you exactly as you are.  His love for humanity is endearing. 

Another friend is magic.  He shows you your power.  He pushes you to be your best, and accepts nothing less.  He is encouraging and loving.  He talks as much as he listens.  He believes in you, and thinks you are beautiful inside and out.

And there is that friend that is always there.  She's been through your shit with you, but she never questioned the choices you made.  She showed up- every single day, and she always texts to make sure you are ok. She doesn't judge or try to change you, she just loves. 

I know a school teacher who is a genius.  The kids hang on to her every word.  They participate in classroom activities with excited smiles on their faces.  They love her.  They would do anything for her.  They enjoy learning every single day. 

And I am a genius at inspiring others. I remind you who you are and what you are capable of.  I will climb the highest mountain or jump out of an airplane for you.  I work hard, but have fun.  I try new things, set new goals and put myself out there. I believe you can do or have anything that your heart desires, and I'll show you the way.  I am passionate for adventure and want you to be the best version of yourself every day. I learn from the life that I live, and in turn love the life I live.

Matthew Kelly says you'll know you've found your genius when "you experience feelings of joy and timelessness."  You'll be in the flow.  You'll be happy.  You'll be rocking it!

Come on- you know what your genius is!
Now live to be the best version of yourself. 
Amazing is not reserved for others.








Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The Magical Powers of Running Shoes

"I always thought of running as just dancing forward."
Tom Hiddleston




My running shoes are magical.

When I first put them on, it was to lose "baby weight", but they showed me that running was so much more than just exercise. 

They introduced me to hardworking, dedicated, like-minded people who inspired me to go farther, run faster and to challenge myself.  I hit the pavements in Dallas, soared through red rocks in Utah, escaped seaside in California, chased flying pigs in Cincinnati, and scrambled up Heartbreak Hill in Boston.

They've lead me through wooded trails so stunning that I thought fairies might pop out at any minute.  I've crossed canyons, climbed mountains and traversed plains.  I've plodded through mud pits, waded through waist-deep rivers and scrambled over jagged rocks. 

I've run with hippies, republicans and the homeless.  I've run alone and with groups. I've run with friends, my kids and my lovers. I've even run with famous people.
 
I've run fast, I've run slow.
I've won and I've lost. 
It's easy, its hard. 
I'm happy, I'm sad.

My running shoes are magical....they always encourage me to take the next step forward.

Sunday, September 25, 2016

On true friends, injury and breakups

"Two things you will never have to chase:
True friends, and true love."
Mandy Hale


There are two times in your life when you really find out who your friends are:
during a breakup, and during illness or injury. 

True friends are the ones that text to ask if you are ok.  They don't take sides.  They are non-judgmental, empathetic and understanding. They are not into drama, they are there for you. 

True friends are the ones that call you up and offer free swimming sessions.  They see if you want to ride or lift.  Sometimes you just go for a hike together, or they invite you to join them for their post run brunch.  They slow down for you.

True friends understand that you are in a heavy stage, and they help to take off some of the weight. 
They know.  They listen. 

True friends open their arms to you.  They don't pretend like nothing happened.  They don't pretend that you are not hurting.  They don't ignore the symptoms and assume that you will be ok.
They LOVE. 

Can you think of someone who needs your help? 
Don't make them chase you.  Be a true friend.






Sunday, September 18, 2016

Perspective

"What day is it?" asked Pooh.
"It's today."  squeaked Piglet.
"My favorite day." said Pooh..
A.A. Mine
 
What makes the perfect day? 
Is it sunshine and smiling and kisses?
Awe, history and amazement?
Perhaps sex, wine and rock and roll?

What makes the perfect week?
Is it amazing food, conversation and laughter?
Movement, art and beauty?
People, passion, purpose?

What makes the perfect year?
Maybe serenity and abundance?
Faith, hope  and trust?

What makes the perfect life? 
Ah......That one's easy.
The answer is always- Love.




Wednesday, September 7, 2016

He loves me.....he loves me not.


"To LOVE, in the context of Buddhism, is above all to be there."
Thich Nhat Hanh



He loves me- and chooses me every day.
He loves me not- he is absent.

He loves me- and brings happiness to my life.
He loves me not-  I suffer.

He loves me- he understands my deepest troubles, my deepest inspirations.
He loves me not- he looks, but does not see.

He loves me- there is joy.
He loves me not- I am anxious.

He loves me- I am free. 
He loves me not- a caged bird. 

He loves me.   He is present.
He loves me. 

















Monday, August 22, 2016

When your body gives you the finger.

"Fall down seven times- get up eight"
Japanese proverb

It's been a nose dive year of racing for me.  Literally.
A freak twisted ankle on an easy 3 mile run right before Bandera lead to my first ever DNF.
The next race I entered landed me with 5 stitches in my right knee and DNF #2.
Most recently, just weeks before Leadville, tendinitis creeped into that same ankle leaving it pissed off and swollen; and I was forced to swallow DNF #3.
3 races- 3 DNFs
.
So...... It makes you wonder what the hell is going on? Why do I keep tripping and falling?
What happened to the agile dance that used to come so naturally? What is my body trying to tell me?

Our ankles hold our entire weight, so perhaps if that load is too much- they simply collapse. . Maybe my left ankle has been holding up the red flag of surrender for 8 months now, and it finally said "Fuck you Jennifer.  I'm done."

We know that fear, insecurity and emotional overload manifests in our body.
I think maybe its time to untwist, redirect, and find a better support system.
Maybe its time to find a more solid ground? 
Or perhaps its time to practice dancing again.......

 





Sunday, August 14, 2016

Forget all the reasons why it won't work, and believe in the one reason why it will.......

"Forget all the reasons why it won't work,
and believe in the one reason why it will."
Unknown


Forget all the reasons why it won't work. 

Forget the fact that the average finishing rate of the Leadville 100 is historically less than 50%.
Forget the fact that the cut-offs are unforgiving, with no room for error or misjudgment.

Forget the fact that the race is at high altitude from start to finish,
and that every breath leaves you feeling like you are running at tempo pace. 

Forget that you will experience rough terrain, 6 mountain climbs and 2 river crossings. 
Forget the dry mountain air, and the possibility of drastic temperature change ( while you have been acclimating to 105 temps with 75% humidity).

Forget the fact that you had 2 DNF's this year; stitches in your knee after a bad fall,
and that you have a touch of tendinosis in your left ankle.

Forget the fact that it will be extremely emotional, that you are carrying baggage in your hands and in your heart. That its going to hurt in so many ways.......

And believe in the one reason why it will......
Because you are never alone in this journey. 
You are supported, loved, and carried by the wings of angels
who know that in your element- you are powerful beyond belief. 





Friday, August 5, 2016

Think Less, Feel More

"Get out of your head and into your heart. 
Think less.  Feel More."
Osho

You think too much!
As you glide over rocks and roots, through rivers and canyons
Delight. 

Relax!
When the sun burns your face and the wind teases your hair
Unleash joy.

Taste Life!
When the wine burns your throat and your head is a carefree buzz
Be intoxicated.

Be Present!
Touch. Kiss. Skin on skin.
Revel in pleasure.

Let go!
Your brain is the fucking devil.
Your heart knows the truth. 

Trust.
You can do it.
I know you can.




Think Less, Feel More

"Get out of your head and into your heart. 
Think less.  Feel More."
Osho

You think too much!
As you glide over rocks and roots, through rivers and canyons
Delight. 

Relax!
When the sun burns your face and the wind teases your hair
Unleash joy.

Taste Life!
When the wine burns your throat and your head is a carefree buzz
Be intoxicated.

Be Present!
A touch.  A kiss.  Skin on skin.
Revel in pleasure.

Let go!
Your brain is the fucking devil.
Your heart knows the truth. 

Trust.
You can do it.
I know you can.




Sunday, July 17, 2016

For God's sake- it's just running!

"The root of all suffering is attachment"
Buddha


"I'd die if I couldn't run."
"I only finished 87 miles of my 100 mile race."
"I didn't PR"
"I only ran the half"
"My arm was falling off, but I should have kept going anyway....."

It's Sunday evening, and I'm saddened to see my Facebook page flooded with statuses like the quotes above.  So many people suffering via their attachment to running.

I've been there myself, beating myself up for not hitting my goal even though I had a fever of 101.  Being disappointed in not finishing a race, yet ending up with several stitches in my knee.   Pissed off because I came in 4th  place in my age group instead of third
Leaving a race feeling down instead of grateful.......

It's time to stop the madness. 
Being able to move our bodies through time and space in a mindful way is the gift of being human. 
Power, skill, fortitude....we make cool shit happen every day. 
Some people are exquisite artists.
Some people are  able to find "X" in the equation
Some people can cook a mean rib eye
and some people (the cool ones)  run. 
But we are also mothers and fathers, and lovers, and seekers, and gypsies. 
We gather, we feast, we pray and we protest. 
We help, and care, and give and listen. 

Running is such a small part of who we are. 
A very wise coach and friend once told me, "You are not defined by who you are as a runner.  You are defined by who you are as a person." 
Running, living, being....its a gift. 



Friday, July 8, 2016

Try the meditation. It's delicious.

"The thing about meditation is:
you become more and more you."
David Lynch


When you're floundering in the sea of anxiety you have two choices:
 sink or swim. 
It became clear that I was sinking when I felt work suffocating me, panic strangled  my relationships, and I choked on basic decision making.  I knew I better roll over and start doing the backstroke, or I would surely drown
.
I had an initial appointment with a therapist which went ok, but I kept hearing and reading about a technique called transcendental mediation- and I am a true believer that if you keep hearing or reading about something- you really should listen and check it out.  After going to the initial introductory class I knew this was something I wanted to explore, but I'm not going to lie, it was a bit much for my budget.  I had a choice.....2 months of therapy once a week, or 4 days of TM class. 
I chose meditation, and after only one week of 20 minutes twice a day, I am a believer. 

The TM technique is super easy.  The Mayo Clinic describes TM as " a simple, natural technique... This form of meditation allows your body to settle into a state of profound rest and relaxation and your mind to achieve a state of inner peace, without needing to use concentration or effort.
Thoughts come and go, and that's ok.  You're allowed to look at the clock every once in a while to see how you are doing on time.  You don't have to sit in a fancy pretzel position, and you are allowed to scratch your itch. 
I'm the girl who can't sit still- and I am starting to look forward to those restful moments every day. 

Every time you mediate, a layer of stress dissipates. 
I feel lighter and less reactive.   I have witnessed full potential and unlimited energy.  I am running better, sleeping through the night and am genuinely happy.  I know that everything will be ok.  Period. 

David Lynch compares TM to the sweetness of a donut:
"This is a donut.  It is very sweet and good, but if you've never really tasted a donut, you don't know how sweet it is.  Meditation is like that.  Transcendental meditation gives an experience much sweeter than the sweetness of a donut." 

I must admit friends- it's pretty damn tasty.  If  you want a bite, check out this website: 
http://www.tm.org/
 


Friday, June 10, 2016

Zen and the art of day to day life

"The practice of Zen (as opposed to the study of Zen) is something  all together different:
to give yourself completely to each moment as it is......and trusting that there is something much deeper than reason and logic, and that if you follow it, you might just end up where you belong."
Jane Dobisz- One Hundred Days of Solitude

Something much deeper than logic: 
When you wipe the sleep off of your eyes, and  make your little peanut butter toast with no crust and coffee with real cream. 
When your child stumbles into the kitchen, calls you "mama" and gives you a hug.
A goodbye kiss from your love and a "Have a great day."
A greeting from a co-worker, a "thank you" and a "good job". 
The meeting with your client- a gift for hard work and dedication. 
To play in cool water, to run in dreadful heat.
The call - just to check in.
The moment your head hits the pillow
Your heart, with you- always beating.  Your breath, with you- consistent and smooth. 
Give yourself to each moment as it is, and you might just end up where you belong. 

 




 








Sunday, May 22, 2016

The Fly on my Shoulder

"When I stop struggling, I float.
It's the law."
Unknown


Several hours early on the way to the airport in Albuquerque, I saw a sign for the Cochiti Lake Recreation Area.  Feeling curious, my car seemed to head there with little thought or redirection from my brain. 

Not really knowing how far from the highway I was headed, I followed a bumpy road at 35 miles an hour to the overlook, where a breathtaking view of red rock mountains on one side, dusty plains on the other and a placid lake below was waiting. 

I pulled on my jacket to protect me from the biting wind, and found a flat rock surrounded by cacti.  Sitting with the sun on face, I soaked in the space, and then closed my eyes to meditate- only to be interrupted by a vexatious buzz in my ears.
Crazily, I swatted the fly away, only for him to return, circling my face incessantly.  The whir of his irksome voice mocked me as I waved my hands like a mad woman, but he was persistent and returned again and again.

So, I decided to get very still.
And the fly sat on my shoulder
and we watched  a hiding vulture fly away,
and rooted for the hopeful fisherman in the lake below
And dreamed of climbing the statuesque mountains in the horizon.
And we breathed together
peacefully.


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Enough is enough

"Whatever makes you happy
 Whatever you want.
 I wish I was special.
 You're so fucking special.
 But I'm a creep."
Radiohead


If I worked out every day, fixed my boobs and wore 6 inch stilettos-
would you think I was pretty?

What if I made a million dollars, traveled the world debt free and never had to work again?
Would you be happy? 

I could climb the highest mountain, run the farthest and fastest, and do 100 pushups on one leg with one arm while chewing gum and singing Broadway tunes.
Would you awe at my strength and capability? 

If I strove to be the friendliest, brightest, most talented, kindest, the most encouraging, the star of the show. 
Would you say you want to be me? 

What will it take Jennifer- for you to be content? 
When will you ever be enough?



Thursday, May 12, 2016

Keep searching

"I promise if you keep searching for everything beautiful in this world
you will eventually become it."
Tyler Kent White


Keep searching-
for livelihood, merriment and elation
for devotion, appreciation and promise

Keep searching
for giggles, tenderness and love
for freedom, sanctuary and understanding.

Keep searching-
for crazy, sexy, cool
for calm, collected and peaceful.

But realize you will never find it in another,
you must look within.





Saturday, April 23, 2016

"I'm pretty tired. I think I'll go home now." Forrest Gump

"My momma always said, you have to put the past behind you before you move on.  That's what I think my running was all about."
Forrest Gump


For 8 years now, "I've just felt like running."
I've run off the baby weight and mommy stress.
I've run for work and for play.
A soulmate through death, divorce and heartache, running was at my side.
I would even go as far to say that running was my savior. 

I've run many miles in the name of finding myself. 
Running was the drug to numb the pain, and it has been a fun ride! 
But I am no longer dependent on that high.
I stressed my body, was crazy without my fix, and became obsessed with results. 
I have given  up many hours sleep and opportunities to have fun. 
I have literally tortured myself in the name of discipline.

It's so cool what the body and mind can do.  Our bodies are freaking amazing!  I will always be grateful to running for showing me my strong. 
But.......
"I'm pretty tired.  I think I'll go home" after Leadville.
As Waylon Lewis says: "I am wearily desperate to just be."





Friday, April 8, 2016

Dear Life.....I want to be happy just like I am tonight





Dear Life-

I want to be happy, just like I am tonight.
I want to eat brie with honey while drinking crisp chardonnay.
I want to gasp at the crown of the mountain, not for lack of oxygen, but in utter awe of it's beauty.
I want to huddle up with my kids while watching a movie, eating butter drowned popcorn.

I want to sleep at the elbow of my love, breathing in the intoxicating scent at the back of his neck.
I want bubble baths and warm blankets and long kisses.
I want fresh cut flowers wrapped in paper and jalapeno chocolate with peanuts.

I want Italy, and Spain and Costa Rica;  Peru, Brazil and Patagonia.
Zion, Bryce Cannon and Leadville; Yellowstone, Yosemite and Jackson Hole.
I want to hold a big fat burger in my left hand and a hoppy beer in my right after a day on the slopes;
And to fall into bed exhausted after a day of adventure in the canyons.
I want finish lines.  All of them.  

I want to exhale anxiety and inhale blessing.
To bathe in security and wash away doubt
To Dance and sweat..  To Run and swim.
To sing too loudly so as to embarrass my kids.
To fall hard.  To get back up.

To Trust. To Trust. To Trust.
To trust that today and everyday
is always completely
perfect.








Sunday, March 27, 2016

What I know (and now accept) about myself


"Happiness can exist only in acceptance."
George Orwell


38.
That's the number of self help books I have in my current view.
Oh, there have been more for sure, but they are in the hall closet, or the kids' bedroom, or perhaps in the trunk of my car.  It's silly when you think about it, how much time I spend trying to be "better".
I guess I hope that someday I will be a fearless, elite athlete; perfect mom and girlfriend, who eats and says all the right things while running a profitable business; all the time keeping her sink clean.

I've learned how to be brave, how to train for a triathlon, how to overcome co-dependency and how to meditate.  I've even read that I should just "f*ck feelings" all together!
I'll admit, the books I have read HAVE helped me to better understand and challenge myself.  But I've also learned that there are some things about me that will never change.
Things that I just need to accept.

Like the fact that I have to be moving.  Yes, I can meditate for about 10 min at a time and it feels really good to concentrate on my breath and focus on the source of my energy.  But damn that energy is buzzing in my body all day!  I'm not the girl that's going to be still.  The thought of a "movie marathon" sends me into a panic.  Sitting around fills me with an anxiety that I can't explain.  I procrastinate every time that I need to do computer work.  I've found that I would rather vacuum and mop the apartment for God's sake!  So- there you go.  Jennifer Kimble- ultra mover extraordinaire.   Please don't ask me to stay in bed all day with you, or God forbid sit in traffic.

And the fact that I wish I was perfect.
Yes- I wish I was faster and prettier than you, and I do compare myself to everyone.    I wish I made more money.  I wish I was the perfect coach and that I was smart and funny.  I wish I knew how to be better in my business approach, and that I was never filled with anxiety, I wish that my family life resembled that of the Brady bunch and that I was always kind and loving.
But I really do finally accept that in my imperfection, I am perfect.  In my willingness to try, I am attractive.  In my giving, I am changing people's lives for the better.
Nobody's perfect.  Seriously.
Even Beyonce.

And I am so patient.....up until a point.
Until I can see that you don't really want it.  Until you keep making excuses.
After that- I'm done.
I may give you a redo, even a third chance because I'm also an eternal optimist...but if you say you want something but you don't really mean it...then well I'm sorry.  I'm done.
Because you know what?  Someone else really DOES want it.
I am good at what I do.  That I know for sure.

So friend- I hope that you will accept me as I have learned to accept myself.
Yeah- I know it's not always easy, but we're both worth it.







Friday, March 11, 2016

Today I feel ugly


"Amazing grace, how sweet the sound.
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost, but now am found.
Was blind, but now I see." 



Today I feel ugly.
I woke up noticing dark circles under my eyes and deep wrinkles around my lips.
I went to yoga because that usually helps to center me, but all I could concentrate on were my over sized muscles, the scab on my knee, and the fact that my 8 toenails are still dirty and unkempt from last weekends race.

Today I feel ugly.
When I got home the kids were starving so I tugged my dirty hair into a bun, pulled on droopy faded jeans, and threw a jacket over my sports bra and running top.  We went straight to the mall and movies after breakfast and it was clear that I was the frazzled and haggard old mom trying to hang with the beautiful people.

Today I feel ugly.
My eyebrows are wild and I swear I've gained 10 lbs. I can't shake the feeling of "not enough".  I don't want to work out.  I don't want to be around anyone.   I  don't want to do anything.
How did I get here? It's my day off for God's sake.  I can't seem to shake it.

Today I feel ugly
So I follow Jorge unwillingly to the gym.  And we do that fucking hard hill workout that we don't want to do. And I huff and puff as he smoothly climbs.....
and I am sweating under my boobs and across the pooch of my belly.
And I am showered in grace and clarity.
And I feel proud.  And I feel strong.

Tonight I feel beautiful.




Friday, February 26, 2016

Listen! Your soul is trying to speak.

"When you feel negative emotion, it means that you are preventing your vibrational access to Source and to the stream of Well Being"
Esther and Jerry Hicks

Thursday morning, I woke up tired and in a pissy mood.  I thought I could shake it off as I usually do, but on the ride to work I found tears welling in my eyes and then rolling down my cheeks. 
Jorge and I joke sometimes that we don't want to "adult" today, but it was worse than that. 
More than anything- I wanted time alone. 

I love my job.  I work with a talented team of trainers and we have each others back.  My clients give me their best energy every day, and I enjoy hearing about their lives and challenges. I am excited and energized most days of the week.
It's not my job....It's me.  Because believe it or not I am an introvert.  I need time alone to process all the emotion that I internalize every single day.  It's no secret that the reason why I can spend so many hours alone in the water, or on the bike, or on a trail is because I like doing so.   Engaging with others is my gift,  but I am energized by time alone. 

On my way to  work it became very clear to me that I have not spent any time by myself in months.  I've come to learn that negative emotion is just a sign that you are not on the right path to what you really do want.  It's like a warning signal.  "Danger Will Robinson- You're going down the wrong path." So instead of enduring needless suffering I took the warning. I rescheduled my evening clients, skipped out on a meeting and I headed to the trails. In running and in nature I reconnected with my strong and capable body as I danced across the rocks and roots.  I marveled at my intuition as I glided downhill.  I celebrated my smiling soul, the sun stretching to kiss my shoulders in between the trees.
I found peace.  I found relief.  I let go of any guilt. 
And that evening I slept. 

Today I woke up at 3:30am to meet my first client at 5.  I am a new woman, motivated and empowered, because this time I LISTENED to my beckoning soul. 
It's all about continuously writing a new story for myself.  One where I feel really, really good. 

Friday, February 19, 2016

The Law of Attraction- JK style

"Sometimes I just want someone to hug me and say:
'I know it's hard.  You're going to be ok.  
Here's a cup of coffee, and 5 million dollars!'" 
Unknown


So- here's what I'm attracted to lately:  The Law of Attraction.
  
The law of attraction is the name given to the maxim "like attracts like," which in New Thought philosophy is used to sum up the idea that by focusing on positive or negative thoughts, a person brings positive or negative experiences into their life.

Now maybe you've seen THE SECRET and thought, "that's a lot of hocus pocus."  Maybe you've been told that you are not good enough, or you believe that you don't work hard enough, or perhaps you believe you are undeserving of abundance (this last one is the one that plagues me).  But I'm here to say BULLSHIT.  
Money is not the root of all evil, I do not have to be a martyr, and I'm just as deserving as the next guy.
I truly believe that a change my mindset is MANDATORY for me in order to stop SURVIVING, and start LIVING!

Here are the lies that I tell myself.....and how I plan to turn my life around through positive self talk:

1.  From:  "I'm not a good salesperson- so I will never make money in my business." 
     To: " I'm one hell of a coach and personal trainer, and I what I sell has has life changing value."
2.  From:  "I'm doing what I love, so I should just be happy that I'm making it" 
     To:  "I'm doing what I love, but the freedom to travel and take some time off will add exponential prize to my well being and purpose." 
3.  From:  "I broke a relationship, so I deserve broken relationships." 
     To:   "I deserve to love and to be loved by someone."  
4.  From:  "I can't afford that." 
     To:  "Won't it be fun when I can afford that?" 
5.  From:  "I'm not enough unless I....." 
     To:  "I am fucking amazing.  Period."  

Experts in the Law of Attraction say that just FEELING the way you want to feel starts the process of attracting good things to you.  How many times have you thought about how you would like to FEEL?  
What things turn you on?  What things excite you?  Those are the things you want to attract more of!!! 

So, tonight I just spent $50,000.00 in my mind.  
I bought a few adventure trips, a really expensive tri bike, breast surgery, some work on my car, a crazy party for all of my friends, .....and it felt amazing!  How fun to concentrate on how we want to feel- to concentrate on the things that make us happy!  

Here's what I know.  If we keep dwelling on the things that are wrong in our life- we'll feel like shit.  If we concentrate on things that make us happy- we'll be happier.  
Gratitude.  Love.  Family.  
It's so simple.

See you in Costa Rica.  I'll be the one looking awesome in my new bikini with amazing boobs.  








Monday, February 8, 2016

Don't look back- you're not going that way!

"You and me together, we can do anything ...."
Dave Matthews


"Baby, you have to get up and get going, or we're going to freeze."

Apparently this is what you say to your boyfriend when he's lying in fetal position on the side of the trail with his head on a crumbling log....because it worked.  He stood up, his legs wobbling under him like those of a newborn deer.
"Which way do we go?"  he asked.
"We go that way." I pointed.
"It would be quicker to get back to the aid station if we went that way."
Ah.  So his brain WAS still working.  That established, onward we go.

I looked at my Garmin.  My hunky, athletic stud was barely walking a 27 min mile, stopping often and telling me he was about to pass out.  Panic knocked loudly on my frontal lobe.  How am I going to get him through this?  What do I say?  Should we head back?  What if he's not really ok?
So I did what all humans do in a panic situation....I prayed.
"I cannot do this alone.  I'm going to need some help with this."
And I gave him to God.

It's the same phrase I found myself saying back in September when Jorge and I lost sight of our path and became completely separated in the woods.  After an "aha" moment of it's not my job to save him or anyone else, I let go, and decided to walk on my own path.  To my fortune, he did the same...because here  we meet again at mile 90.

Trudging on, I remembered learning to do a walking meditation once.    Walking slowly no longer was an aggravation as I became more mindful- breathing in with one step, breathing out with the next.  When fear wrapped its hands around my neck I concentrated only on my breath, and sending energy to Jorge.  I took his hand, and we inched our way forward through the darkness and into the morning light with its smiling promise of a new day.
"It's like a Sunday stroll," I joked.  "All we need is a little dog and some Starbucks."

We could have turned back when things were tough,  but there was really nothing back there for us.  We could have quit back in September, but instead we decided to take each others hand, and walk through this together.
We both know that there really is no finish line, but we do believe there will be so many reasons to keep moving forward.  Why stumble over something behind you?
God has our back.








Wednesday, January 27, 2016

What I learned during my two week detox (ok......10 day detox)

"Eat Food
Not too much
Mostly plants."
Michael Pollen


I like to know what my clients are experiencing.  While coaching for Run On!, I tried Weight Watchers for a month, just to see if my runners were getting enough fuel.  Life time (my current place of employment) has a detox program, so I decided to try it to see how I felt while on the program and I felt it was time to experience a bit of self control.    I knew if I paid the money, I would likely be more consistent.

I wanted to try the detox at this time because I really allowed myself to start making poor dietary choices during the holidays and my weight and body fat percentage was starting to creep up.  Stepping away from sugar and an almost nightly glass of wine (or two) was my main goal for the program.
I will start by saying I did not follow the Detox to the key.  I tried, and I did mostly very well.
 (I will explain that later).
The protocol is 1 nutrient and fiber rich  shake a day the first week, and two the second week.  You eat real food, but no dairy, gluten, alcohol, canola oil, caffeine, soy or eggs.

Here's what worked FOR ME:

1.  I became very mindful of what I was eating.   This forced me to eat less processed food and more down to earth good stuff.  I learned to like vegetables for the taste of the vegetable, not for the taste of the butter.

2.  Green tea instead of a glass of wine at night.  This was hard, but now I actually get comfort in that warm mug of tea, sleep better at night, and feel better when that 4 am wake up call sounds.

3.  Less spikes in blood sugar.  By concentrating on eating healthy fats, fiber and protein; I was able to step off that roller coaster ride.

4. A protein shake with vitamins and fiber in the morning was a good habit to get into before heading into work or for a run, and an easy way to get in quality calories and ingredients.

What did not work for me:

1.  Day 3 was pretty miserable.  After 2 days of no coffee I was grouchy, and I was bloated from the extra fiber.  I felt like the Stay Puff Marshmallow man.
On the morning of day 4, I pooped 4 times before 10 am.

2. By the first weekend I needed a break.  I just wanted to enjoy food.  So I did.  Nothing too crazy, but I ate bread and had a couple beers.  Oh yeah- and started drinking coffee with almond milk in it again.  ;)

Day 8- Weekend over- back on the plan. (except for the coffee part)

4.  Day 10- long story short- I ended up putting in about 4 hours of exercise this day.  I was starving.  I couldn't understand why I was so hungry on this program, but in talking to some other trainers I think it was the fact that I was cutting calories just because my options were limited.  The no eggs thing was huge for me.  So on this day I called it.  I was no longer putting sugar in my coffee, no longer drinking wine in the evenings, and learned to love quality food as nature presents it to us.  Mission accomplished, lessons learned.  I went and got a sandwich on whole grain bread.

So- in conclusion.  Was it easy?   Absolutely not.
Worth it?  Yes- if only for the good habits I developed while on the program.
Going straight to the actual bio-metric results, I did lose a few pounds - but more significantly I lost 3% body fat and feel good about where I am heading into a big training cycle.

Quality food is quality fuel.
Lesson learned.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

There is a downhill for every uphill

"There is an uphill for every downhill, and a downhill for every uphill."
Turkish Proverb

I've been doing a lot of climbing over the past year.  
Climbing the corporate ladder.
Jumping over relationship hurdles.
Scaling a workout slump.
Pawing through quicksand of financial uncertainty.
Ascending the hill of delusion.
Scaling the mountain of doubt.


But I must say my ass is looking pretty fine,
and wow......the downhill sure is a blast.




Saturday, January 16, 2016

Dear Leadville

"Salaca doo la menthicka boo la bibbidi-bobbidi- boo
Put 'em together and what have you got? 
Bibbidi-bobbidi-boo"
The Fairy Godmother

Dear Leadville-

I knew we would be dancing together, for I walked with you once upon a dream.  
(Besides, I happened to have the extra $315 in my bank account, and that is something that hasn't happened in a long time.)

So-here's the thing.
You scare me.
Your big muscles and quintessential beauty are extremely intimidating.  You're royalty for God's sake!
I hear that you will literally take my breath away.
And you're such a tease with your time cutoff.  After 30 hours my carriage turns into a pumpkin and I become just an ordinary servant girl.

But here, your majesty, is my promise to you:
I will hire a fairy godmother (or 2).
I will work like a slave by day, and practice waltzing at night.
I will show up to the ball sparkling and confident.
And even when I lose my glass slipper at midnight, I will trust that you, and my friends, will help me to find myself.

I, after all, am a mother fucking princess in disguise.
And I believe in magic.



Sunday, January 10, 2016

I DNF'd (and the world didn't end)

"Hubris caused the downfall of many a Greek hero"
Tony Hsieh

About 6 weeks ago I found myself  eating the sidewalk after rolling my ankle.  Yesterday I found myself eating the rocks after rolling it again at Bandera.  It hurt like a mother fucker, and after my recent news of getting into Leadville 100 I panicked a bit and decided to call the race at mile 15.  I do wonder if it was the right decision  (for my head, not for my body), but decided that being able to train is the most important thing right now- after all, this was not an "A" race.
I would have told any client of mine to do the same.

I'll admit, I threw a short pity party for myself, but guess what?  The sun still set that evening and rose the next day,  and in between those moments the trip gifted me
Burgers and beers
Sleeping in and shopping
Mariachis and margaritas
Art and the Alamo
Love and light

I smiled a lot this weekend, and walked away from the hill country on my own two feet.