I had been a long time Nike-wearing girl then switched to Asics for more cushioning. I really loved Asics but then found that the interior lining just didn’t seem to hold up. On a whim, I read some reviews about the Brooks Ghost and bought them. They were touted as “unfathomably plush” on the website. Additionally I read many people thought they had good cushioning but I do not. Although not quite ready for Hoka Ones I’m probably returning to the Asics Gel Kayano. The Brooks Ghost soul even ran down fast and now I swear I feel every pebble in the road.
Much like my running, I think my shoe buying is in a state of flux. I don’t want to just keep buying the same shoes and I want to find Xanadu in running but it’s not going to happen with the Brooks shoes.
Anyone have any suggestions?
When I turned 30 I ran my first marathon. I ran three more, then about 10 or so half marathons. After that my motivation just sort of faded. I analyzed it, bought apps, fancy GPS watches, read books, blogs, scanned Pinterest for inspiration and bought more running clothes. None of it really made me want to get back out there and train. I finally had this epiphany; It doesn’t really matter how I feel about it. Does anyone really love to exercise? I’m sure there’s a few but for the general masses let’s just say no. It’s a chore, a burden, a cross….but it’s also salvation, therapy and freedom from the ever looming threat of poor health and obesity. I hate starting to run and love it when I’m done. It makes me feel so proud of myself.
I’m an analyzer, a thinker and a worrier. My brain can wear out a subject. After my epiphany I’ve been able to calm my brain down. It can be your nemesis. It comes up with excuses, worries about aches and pains, and will generally talk you out of doing what’s best. So now I don’t let it rule the kingdom. How I feel does not matter. I tell myself that every time I put on my running shoes. Stop feeling tired, grumpy or whatever cause it doesn’t matter. You still need to do this. Get out there and just run.
On my 30th birthday I ran my first marathon. The inaugural West Palm Beach Marathon. It was, like everyone says, life transforming. I wasn’t just a runner anymore or a jogger, I was a marathon runner. I had earned my street cred. I ran 3 more marathons after that but then sort of lost my mojo. I continued to run but have downgraded myself to half marathons. I’ve got the usual excuses, kids, work, husband, dog, cat chickens…..blah blah. Anyway, I’m now about 8 months away from my 40th birthday. How is that possible? I’ve been giving some serious thought to trying to reclaim my mojo. I’ve looked at races in November (the easy step), I printed a training plan (then looked for an easier one), I ran a few extra miles on my run today but haven’t taken the step to actually articulate it yet. That’s commitment. Once I start saying that I plan to run one again, I don’t think there is any going back. That sh*!’s real. For now, I’m going to train like a girl in training for a marathon and see where it leads me this summer. I would like to start my forties with this under my belt. So here’s to finding my 39-year old mojo.
So what’s been your favorite marathon?
Today is International Happiness Day. My husband hates days that seem to be randomly picked to sell greeting cards but I like the idea of days to reflect on things. I’m a big reflector. I’ve been on a camping trip with my husband and daughters and I asked them what makes us happy.
We got answers like…
cupcakes, our dog, cup of coffee first thing in the morning, attention, sleeping in, love, a day well-planned…
What I noticed is that it wasn’t the big things. It wasn’t trips to Disney World, a million dollars or even seeing the world. I think on International Happiness Day I’m going to remember it is the small stuff that matters, it is the triumph over struggle that really makes me realize how happy I am. I hate embarking on a long run but there’s no feeling like it in the world when you are done. Everything tastes better after a long run.
So for my International Happiness Day I’m going to go run and struggle through it to remind myself that life and happiness is in overcoming the resistance.
Having a bad day happens to us all but what about those days when life just seems to blow up. Grinding halt. Derailment. Plunging into darkness. Everyone, and I mean everyone has had this happen to them. Even those who write positive self-help blogs too. How you handle it will determine how long you’re in the pit. I thought I would share some ideas for finding your way out of that place on your path back to normalcy.
1. So let’s say you’re fired from your job. Immediately you start visualize all the worst case scenarios. I’ll never find another job….I’ll lose my house….My kids will starve, etc. You get the idea. Stop. Take a breath and write down a factual narrative. This means NO EMOTION. As of this moment, you don’t have a job. That’s it. You haven’t lost anything, no catastrophe has befallen you so don’t go there.
2. Write out an action plan. Be reasonable and don’t start making rash statements like “I must sell my house now.” More like “I will create a new resume”, “I will file for unemployment”, “I will starting posting said resume on websites”, etc. Keep your brain from doing that vicious circle thing with your mind (perseverating). Just the facts, no emotion.
3. Give yourself time to feel bad. Okay, so you’ve lost your job. Go to your wonderful planner and decide how long should this make me sad. How many episodes of House of Cards do I need to binge watch before I can get over this? One day, two? Let’s not get into weeks. After your scheduled allotted time, start working on that action plan. Get up, get dressed, and get to work.
4. Distract yourself. When you’re sad or in crisis your mind can do evil things to you. It’s a good idea to keep your mind busy with writing, watching TV (I normally con’t condone this activity), meeting with friends, checking things off your action plan, reading a good self-help book or running. Anything but allowing the perseverating cycle to begin again.
5. This too shall pass. Remind yourself that this is not the worst ting that has ever happened to you and if it really is, it shall pass. Time and action will make it better. I firmly believe that we train every day for crisis mode. You work on the mind and body so that when your life is derailed you have the tools to heal it. You will live to fight another day. It’s time to practice some gratitude here. You may only be able to say, “I’m here today.” And on some days that has to be enough. One of my favorite childhood books was Anne of Green Gables. I remember when Miss Shirley says this to Anne, “Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?” Yes, it is.
Here’s to a fresh day with no mistakes in it.
So the doldrums is a maritime term used to describe that place where there is no current. A place where your boat can just stand still.
I ‘m not a sailor but I use the term to describe that place between marathons, between life changing events, between major holidays, …….life. On a difficult run this morning I kept thinking of the word doldrums. I’m there. I have no race on the horizon, no big trip until June, no life-changing event that I can foresee. It got me thinking that it is in the doldrums that you learn to row. You eek out the runs that make lining up at the start line possible. You make the healthy dinners that ensure a good report on your physical. You suffer through Algebra 2 homework now so he might have a change to get into a good college. You switch to weight management food now, despite his unhappiness, so he’s at the door to greet you for just a few extra years. You have an extra dinner out with your dad because the day will come when it’s not an option. You kiss your husband one more time to remind him that in the doldrums of house repairs and teenage eye rolling there is still love.
I reminded myself that this moment was the future that I longed for at some point.
I battled an injury that once made me long for pain-free running. Wish granted. Stop whining and get running. You have nothing to stop you now.
My run was mired down in the doldrums but I changed my mantra this morning. “Today makes tomorrow’s goals possible.”
Life is in the doldrums.