Monday, December 31, 2012

Running Scared

It's NYEve ya'll!  What a fabulous year its been, yes?  This has been a big year for me.  A huge year, in fact.  I've changed my job.  I've changed my life.  I've completely let go of some things that were holding me back and embraced others that have allowed me be authentic and true to myself.  And while that is a seemingly simple sentence to type,the truth is that it was a tumultuous journey that included laughter, tears, truth and love, culminating in some pretty damn amazing things.

2012 was I year that I didn't just achieve some goals.  I crushed them.

All but one.  And truthfully, it's the one goal that if you had asked me one calendar year ago, I would have said that I would achieve that goal with no problem, worry or a second thought.

Marathon.  2:59:59. Sub 3.  You still elude me.

I've reflected a lot lately on why it is that for me, the goal that should likely have been the easiest to achieve has suddenly become the most difficult I'm facing.  My Everest, if you will.  My Achilles heel.  The devil on my Asics and a lulu running outfit whispering "you can't do it..."


Here it goes.

Massive Confession.

I haven't given this goal EVERYTHING I have.  I've held back.  Sometimes consciously.  Sometimes subconsciously.  But it is the truth, and one that's really, really hard for me to admit when I pride myself on encouraging other to commit 100% to getting after what they want.  I wanted it, but I didn't want it enough to give it what it deserved.

Allow me to elaborate.  In the past year I had the opportunity to train with a fantastic coach named Janice McCaffrey and a fantastic group of fast and furious (a fun and smiley and encouraging kind of furious) runners called Adrenalin Rush.  I ran speed intervals with this group once a week and sometimes met people for long runs on Saturdays or Sundays and was emailed weekly training plans that were structured around a goal crushing sub 3 hour marathon.  I was provided with unlimited access to the fountain of running knowledge in the form of a coach who knows her shit and a group of incredibly experienced runners who combined, have run in more races and won more awards than I could begin to list here.  And the truth?  I didn't take advantage of it.  In a nutshell, I half participated in the training program.  I did the runs I felt like doing, or the runs that fit into my schedule.  And the rest of the time I did exactly what I felt like doing- which could have been yoga.  Could have been training at the gym.  It also may have been running, but was likely not the running I was given to do in the training plan.


I've thought about it and when I throw away that story that seems to attach to it, the answer is fear.  Plain and simple.  I was scared of failure.  2:59 is a huge benchmark in the world of marathons and I have questioned whether I am a good enough runner to get there.  Which, in reality, is a contradiction in itself since the advice I would give anyone else is that it IS possible if you think it is.  In my head, if I didn't run the 2:59 of my dreams, I knew I would have an excuse.  It would seem less frustrating and less of a mystery to me because deep down in my soul, I would know exactly why I didn't have the race of my life, even if no one else did.  And so there was a part of me that held back.  That didn't commit to the process.  That did not allow the universe to create the magic it does when I have allowed it to.  And the result?  No spring marathon and a disappointing (albeit awesomely disappointing if that makes sense) 3:13 in DC. 

If I've learned anything in this past year, it is that for me, running is a metaphor and a parallel for life.  And this was the year that in life, I really, really went for it.  And amazing things happened.  Moving forward, I am making the promise to myself that in ALL THINGS (running and otherwise) that I will not hold back.  Because, truthfully, working my ass off, committing to the process and not hitting a 2:59 is so much better than half committing and not getting there.  I owe it to myself.  I deserve to give myself my best.  Simple.

And so 2:59 it STILL is.  100% commitment.  Nothing held back.  Nothing to lose.  The result will be fantastic.  No doubt. 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Guess What

Guess what I JUST did?   Moments ago. 

I bought myself a special present.  I signed up for the Saskatchewan marathon.  Eeeeeeeeek!  Registration opened yesterday.  I am the 4th person to sign up.  THE 4th!  Come on, Sask-y!  Let's get feet into shoes, shoes onto pavement I mean ice and GET RUNNING!

Saskatoon, May 27th, here I come! 

This is like a Christmas present, a moving present and a present for no special reason present all wrapped up into one big present with sparkly paper and a shiny bow that I am giving to MYSELF.  It's been a tough week.  A busy week.  And I find myself struggling to get it all in.  I can't think of a better way to bring some focus and clarity to it all than to set a goal that will support my life with some structure.

I know the next few months will bring stress, joy, laughter, tears, wonder, amazement, question and everything in between.  I can't think of a better way than to BE in each and every moment of all of these feelings than to run.  To run and to breathe and to savour it all and to realize that it might be hard, but that doesn't mean its bad.  It just means it just is.  Running and training will be a time for me to take it all in, meditate on it and appreciate the moment. 

After all...

So?  Do tell, peeps!  Whose got races coming?  I want to know!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

The #sweatlife

I'm livin' #thesweatlife.  Big time.

Not only am I in a self-imposed 21 day sweat challenge (simple: sweat each and every day for 21 days), a part of my new job involves #thesweatlife.



I'm learning all about how people get sweaty, get fit, get trained, and get limber in my new community.  There is no better way to do this research than to just get out there and do it.  To sweat it out in gyms.  And yoga studios.  And the great out of doors with runners.  And the track.  And spin classes.

I am having so much fun.  Have I mentioned I love my job? 

And because this is a running blog, I best be getting to some running nuggets.

And so...

Two marathons planned.  So very exciting.  One in May, one in September, BOTH in Saskatchewan.  Both taking care of letters in my alphabet challenge.  Training has already started.  Not the running type of training, although I am running a fair bit, the type of training that prepares the bod for the running training.  Strength, fitness, yoga, fun!  All in the name of planning to pound out a speedy 26.6 in Saskatoon and one in Regina.

New races, new training, same running love.  Can. Not. Wait.