November 23, 2013

Running But No Frills!

Long time no post!Running continues this year, but its the busiest I have ever been. Posting, therefore has taken a back seat.  New career transition, new schedule, ongoing schooling has all been overwhelming my priorities, all while keeping sane!  New trends in my running regime include no headphones (my thoughts to myself) and accepting slower times for now.  No races on my schedule have left me to renew my appreciation for the times I have carved out to rejuvinate and exercise.  No injuries which is awesome, but there is less pushing for times.  This is a time of my life I never imagined how demanding it would be.  If ever atime came when I would be tested to see if running would stick, it is now!
Keep running, people!  

August 07, 2013

Naked Running

I read a lotof tweets, facebook statuses and blogs regarding running.  Those who have seriously changed their lives with a physical activity buy in completely:  its a part of the process.  In order to make real change, we often need to buy in hook line and sinker to a new way of living, a new way of thinking.  Often the new way is taken to extremes, becomes religious and fanatical!  I am in a different place than when I started.  This place is going for more runs with no devices on my body: aka running "naked".  I am going bak to the simplicity of running to enjoy moment by moment the experience of my heart pumping, my breath rhythmic and my mind wandering.  I push at times and go very slow others.  I am not training for a race this year.
Some people tweet that running is their whole life.  It is not my whole life.  It is an important part of self care for me.  It is not the only part.  I love running at times and I have moments of ugh.  Freeing myself from that which is overtaking my passion for life is important.  Devices are sometimes distractions from this passion, a pressure builder for more output, which I already have enough of.
So, enjoy your run.  Take care of yourself.  Unplug once in a while.  Dont worry if your passion is waining in the process.  Find those moments of enjoyment, access your inner passion.  
I work towards overall health, and until my body can no longer do it I will keep on running.

June 08, 2013

Running : Discovering Your Limits

I understandmy life journey differently now.  I use my experience in running, the good and the difficult, as material to draw from in relating to others.  I see challenges from a lens of how I have experienced a marathon, or a solo run, or recovery.  Not sure if you can relate, but in conversation with people, it becomes an analogy that is quickly accessible to me.  

I am in the middle of my masters degree, and the only way I can relate this to others or to understand it myself in how I am feeling is to refer it to a marathon.  First half, you are feeling energized and alive, able to keep a steady pace.  Second half is the real grunt work.  None of a marathon is easy.  But the endurance really shows in the ability to keep moving, keep working hard.  Endurance training is a test, to find the end of one's self.  I have felt the end of myself and been rattled!  How I face life's demands and challenges suddenly gets altered in this revelation:  I have limits, and I have experienced them in a way that is emotionally jarring!  

I have seen the first bit of my running training as a discovery of the amazing sort, all honeymoon.  And then the limits were found, and now I am running to maintain, but in all honesty I feel the wind has come out of my sail a bit in my drive.  I guess I ask myself, now that I know how far I might push myself, why bother visiting that limit over and over?  I know this is probably faulty thinking, but it is a process of experiencing the journey.

April 16, 2013

Boston's Finish Line

Evil.  It exists in our world, explodes in random places.  This year's marathon in Boston was cut short due to evil.  I think of all the dreams people were fulfilling as they ran their race and how it turned so quickly to tragedy.  My heart is sickened to know that for two people their race here on earth ended this week.  I think of all the people affected by the chaos, stopped while on their final stretch, told to go home, to wait.
I reflect as well on my own marathons, wondering how that must have felt.  It is intensely emotional to train for months and complete a marathon.  I would have been confused.  I would have been hurt.  I also would not have cared about the race when I heard.  I think of my last time I recorded.  I was at 3:31:57.  This seems to have been before the time recorded the blast hit first for the Boston Marathon.  The blast may have been when I crossed, had I run a difficult race with the same experience as I had last.  This last marathon was a slow and painful race for me.  Then I reflect on the kind of race people were having that  morning.  Some had good races, some bonked.  Some achieved a PR.  Some did not finish.  That day a certain fate awaited runners.  Some had been stopped just as they hit that painful last 5 km, when one digs deep to run their best despite having nothing left.  I think about how that may have dictated their fate with those explosions.  Being at the wrong place at the wrong time, one can only speculate.  I would have felt guilty had my family been subject to a blast because I bonked or because I was PRing.  Or because I ran at all. It seems that this terror attack was meant not for the runners but for those who cheer them on, a densely populated and highly visible event.  Its confusing, and twisted.
Let me just clarify to those who went for their dreams that morning:  it is not your fault.  No one could have predicted this.  Only the sick bastards who planned mayhem are responsible for this tragedy.  You ran and you trained.  Hard. 
More long term, how will it feel to get on a course again to run another, perhaps this race again?  I imagine the road to heal this wound will be long.  But that is what runners do.  They are in it for the long haul.  God has given them longevity, perspective, reflection and strength.  We understand our limitations, we push ourselves.  We are conscious of recovery.  I stand with my brothers and sisters, their families and friends and those who support each runner and say that this tragedy will not stop us.  We hurt with them and it was evil and wrong, but evil and wrong will not stop us either.  I look to the place where evil and wrong were conquered.  It was not a place of might and anger.  It was the place my savior, Jesus died on a viscous slab of wood, by choice, to vanquish death and wrongdoing.  He can change the most evil of hearts, he can heal the most wounded of souls.  He will help us run again.  Pray with me to the One who can do this miracle, and lets keep running to the Finish.

"...let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."Heb 12

February 22, 2013

Shaking this Creature of Habit

Last postI spoke of shaking up my habits.  I have been doing this with success.  Discovery about myself is that I will get a good thing going, enjoying my labors, hitting that groove. But after a long while I need to just switch it all up.  Winter blahs have been mostly avoided this year; I am running on concrete roads, avoiding the trails where snail's pace is rewuired to keep good traction and cougars wont attack as readily!  This has put my mind at ease and taken the dread off of winter morning runs in the pitch black.  Now, light is beginning to show!  I love the crack of dawn!  Its warming up!  Spring is coming!  This last winter has proven to be a turnign point in my running, I feel more invigorated: I true change from how I felt in the fall after the marathon.  Goal accomplished.  
I guess I write this as an encouragement to those who may feel drudgery.  It is helpful to not quit, but to persevere may mean to change your angle, to find that nugget of joy in your journey again.  This means maybe pursuing healing from injury, getting inspired, pulling back and changing up your routine. 

February 08, 2013

Shakin It Up

To feelInspired I need to change up my routine.  Obligation is killer to me.  I will begrudgingly wake up, go through the motions, but it will eventually make me resent what I am doing.  For me the cure is a simple shake up.  Always running one distance?  Change it.  Always the same days?  Change that too.  Right now I am running 2-3 5 km runs in a row during the work week and then the longer ones on the weekends (10-12 k twice).  My shake up?  I have changed my winter running routes and kept my runs shorter for easy digestion.  I need a certain km per week for my own plan to keep fit and be ready for the day light hours.  Over all this has worked for the last few months to keep my head in the game!  I am also changing my eating habits, less snacking in the evening, more herbal teas.  Less wine too.  Change is the constant in life, it helps one adapt and puts a new perspective on life so it must keep my running fresh.
You may have noticed I am not blogging as often either.  This is also my shakeup!  Less to say, so when I say, I mean it!  Happy running everyone!