Friday, March 21, 2014
My mother is struck ill---->New homes have to be found for her two siblings that she cared for -----> Family begins to bicker about who needs to share in responsibility ----> my brother and I are small business owners so when we don't work, we don't get paid----> budgets are created----> hobbies and vacations are put on hold-----> our world evolves around caring for my mom and her home -----> and I have to drop of training for marathon.
That is right. I would not see the fruits of my labor. My mother was in the hospital until mid January and my brother and I shared the duty of seeing her and helping her. She had become quadriplegic and needed our help and support. In mid January she moved in with me and I no longer had the freedom to go run when I wanted to run. If I thought taking time out of my week to drive to see my mom for a few hours was hard...try being her caretaker 24/7. The first few weeks were very hard. I rarely slept and it took its toll on me.
But I am back. We have a caretaker that comes in a few hours a couple of days a week. This allows me time to work and start enjoying life again. My first run was Monday and I loved it. So what if my pace was not the same as it was before or that I felt really sore the next day. What a great feeling that was...soreness. I missed it. I know it sounds crazy but I did.
So here is to my first run and my first attempt at a normal life again, to be among the living. Over the next few weeks I'll share my experiences on running and the balancing act I must do in order to be a full time care take for my mother and a full time me.
Be ready because here I come.
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
And then I thought about all the times I was disappointed in myself because my time was not as great as I wanted it to be. That I had to take an extra minute of walking during my intervals. Have you ever done that? Have you ever focused on what you thought was a failure without realizing all that you really accomplished? Don't do it. Don't go there. It's a waste of energy. Focus on all you have accomplished.
Life is too short too short to waste time on the negative. Be thankful that you got out there. Seriously, be thankful. My mother struggles to raise one finger on either hand and considers it a victory when she can move two. She doesn't have time to dwell on the things she can't do but focus on the things she can and the small improvements she makes each day. So until she can run, I will run for her.
Sunday, October 20, 2013
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
I forgot to mention one very important aspect to the race last Saturday: fellow runners. Oh how I love runners.
Because we had to loop around the bridge twice, there was a portion of the race that faster runners had to pass us up. That became one of my favorite parts. Many of the "fit" runners ran by saying, "good job" or "you are doing great" "looking good" or just simply giving us a thumbs up as they went by.
If you are one of those fit runners, thank you. It means the world to us. Some how the bridge was made more bearable because of it.
However, if you still feel unsure about signing up for a 5K because you don't feel like you fit in or you feel you are to slow (by the way, I was third from the last in my age group), then I have the race for you.
It's the Big Fat Run hosted by The Fat Girl's Guide to Running. It's a virtual 5K and is free so you have no excuses. The next one is on September 29th. (I know it looks like it is on the 13th but the Brits write their dates backwards. JK She hosts one each month. All you have to do is sign up and run it at home, in the gym, on the trails, on a track, in your neighborhood, on the beach, well you get the picture.
So hop on over and sign up. No excuses, just do it.
Sunday, September 22, 2013
1:42:59 That is my official time. Not counting the virtual 10K I did in 2009, this is the first officially timed 10K that I have completed. If you are not familiar with the Kemah Toughest 10K, then you may not know why it is called the toughest. Almost three quarters of the course is up a steep, high bridge. I have to admit, the idea that my first 10K would consist of lots of hill work from a gal that lives on the flattest place on earth, pretty much terrified me.
It is worth repeating: If you don't have a running group that you regularly run with, get one. It makes all the difference in the world. If it had not been for them, I would not have been as prepared as I was for this race. OK, I call it a race but for me...really not a race. I don't expect to win. My only two goals are to finish and not be last. Mission accomplished but not without obstacles.
Weather: You know it is going to be a bad rain when the news spends most of it's newscast discussing all the flooding they are expecting. At the time that I fell asleep, they predicted the worst part of the storms and flash flooding to happen about 30 minutes after start time or as I thought of it...my first part of my run. Luckily, the weatherman was more into drama than accuracy because it didn't start to rain until mile 3. And it was pouring. The rain felt like small pellets hitting my face. Beyond that discomfort, I loved the rain falling down on me. I was worried about getting blisters but it didn't happen.
However the wind was with us from the beginning. It was a stiff head wind that really made that first cross of the bridge almost impossible. Well, not impossible, but as I was climbing the bridge, all I could think was, "Oh my, I still have three of these to do and the first one is really tough."
Time Management: I have no idea what happened but I didn't hear my alarm go off and I overslept. This race was less than two miles from my house so I didn't really prepare my belongings the night before. I expected to get up at a decent time, get dressed and pack up. However, I woke up an hour later than expected and had to be at the race in 13 minutes. So I rushed to get my clothes on and pack my belongings. So I forgot my wireless headset (if you remember, I forgot my phone holder for my last race), my trashbag to wear in case it rains, my bottle of race fuel and my extra bottle of water. Not to mention I wasn't able to properly eat before the race. I shoved a piece of bread with peanut butter on it in my mouth. But I survived.
Wardrobe malfunctions: As it started to rain, I noticed my left bubby was jiggling more than usual. I looked down and noticed that my bra strap was undone and my bra was falling down. (Remember, at this point, I have a very wet clingy shirt). So I tried my best to lock and load my rogue bubby, while I ran. After two failed attempts of strapping it correctly, I finally just pulled to the side and did it correctly. A bit further down, my running buddy, Heidi, was having problems with her pancho and we stopped to try to put it on her. It just tore so we decided to continue.
Potty break: There is something about running water that makes me need a potty break. So as it started to pour we pulled off for a potty break. You try pulling off wet running capris. Better yet, you try pulling up wet running capris...not an easy task.
Crowd management: When you are one of the last ones to come in, you can expect some of the early finishers to leave before your during your run. However, the only exit out of the race area was on the exact streets that we were running. So when we made our way off the bridge and back onto the streets that lead back to the Kemah Boardwalk, we found ourselves weaving in and out of traffic or watching for cars that were trying to reverse. The course is still closed to traffic but the cross roads aren't so people would block the runner's path. BOOOOO!
But with all these distractions we did an amazing job. It felt amazing. When we turned the corner and weaved pass the last set of cars blocking our way, all I could see was the finish line. I hoped to finish under 2 hours. I wasn't sure if I could with all the bridge work and weather but we did it. 1:42:59 is my official time and that's not too shabby.
Thursday, September 5, 2013
If you don't know who Diana Nyad is, you are not alone. Until a few days ago, neither did I. In 1975 she swam around Manhattan Island. No that is not a typo...1975. So how old is she? She is 64 years old. Her first attempt to do this was in 1978 and has tried three other times. That's right, she failed four times and it took 36 years for her to accomplish this goal. A-MAZ-ing.
That alone speaks volumes about this woman. It speaks to her dedication, her spirit and her focus. How many times have I had a goal in mind and either blew it off after a failed attempt or never believed I could do it and proved myself right or just forgot about the goal? I did it too many times to count.
But she didn't. And at 64, tired and sore, she walked out of that water and had a three messages for us
- We should never, ever give up.
- You never are too old to chase your dreams.
- It looks like a solitary sport but it's a team.