Tag Archives: perspective

Eyes on the Prize

This strategy of listening to my body seems to be paying off for me. I have spent most of my time with weights in the gym, doing my shoulder exercises, and foam rolling until I’m nauseous and what do you know; I just ran a 25:05 on a 5km route.

Previous runs have been faster, less physically and mentally painful, and much more effortless. But this feels so much more rewarding. Today is a victory for me… despite the fact I’m going to miss all of Sunday football. Again.

This is what I needed. My goals keep changing and my body keeps changing and I keep moving towards wherever I am going. I don’t think of myself as inconsistent or not committed, but I have changed so much in the past year that I am just adapting as my standards and ideals change. I am consistent because I listen and respond to my body.

Post- race will be another big re-evaluation for me because I haven’t completely stressed myself out with life changing decisions yet. Close but not quite. Running will never be abandoned as it always steps up in my life when I need it but I can be unbiased enough to recognize that my body responds best to other forms of training. After my run today I was rewarded with sharp knee pains and overwhelming tightness in odd places showing me a flash forward to my future as a crippled old woman. In a wheelchair. With all my trophies piled on my lap.

To earn today’s pops, cracks, and twinges I ran a time I’m actually happy with. I said I would be happy if I go under 25 flat when I race and I’m pretty darn close. What makes me happiest is how close I came to quitting and how hard I worked to keep going. Few experiences match the high of a solitary maximal effort. No one knows where my route ends and no one will make me run until I barf, except me. I did what I set out to do (and I kept everything down).

I have to admit: this is the first time I have run a full 5km since… probably over a year ago? And yes I am racing a 5km in 3 weeks; it is a weird training style absolutely. But my body didn’t feel like it could do it before, so I didn’t make it. This could have backfired and (knock on wood) could still work against me. But how can some pre-planned workout schedule know how my legs will feel, what my terrible schedule will allow, or adjust to where my head will be at. I don’t know even know these things. My body won’t advance in regularly timed intervals so neither will my program.

After my run, I texted one of my good friends who I used to sell running shoes with (think dream team style). He is a fantastic athlete and all of his times blow mine out of the water, yet he has this amazing enthusiasm for my modified distances and increased times. Sure enough, he follows up to my run time with a link to a race in support of a donkey sanctuary, where my time would have placed me as the first female. A donkey shaped trophy would really add to my apartment but running and being supported is rewarding enough.

Maintaining commitment to anything is worthy of reward but committing to something, working hard, and seeing progress is a reward in itself and I can’t promote that enough. That is probably why I work in fitness? Or maybe it is because I just like a career that lets me spend the day in stretchy pants.

Feeling rewarded, motivated, and supported; the countdown to race day is on.

“Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.”   -Theodore Roosevelt

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Which Way is Up

Right before my surgery, a co-worker shared with me a great piece of wisdom. She told me to look at this situation as a good thing because I wasn’t losing ground but simply moving sideways. Moving sideways can be the best direction to go because you are still moving but you find a new endpoint so you gain a new perspective. I was awestruck at her casual brilliance as she then continued on with our conversation.

This is a fantastic way to illustrate that so much in life is simply a matter of perspective.

Regressing can be a way of moving forward as well. In the gym today my joints seemed to want a rest day much more than my brain did so I modified everything, reduced weight and reps, and ended up leaving about half an hour early.

Progress!

If I had fought my way through my planned workout, I know that I would have set myself back with irritation, inflammation, or injury. Sure I didn’t leave the gym today feeling like I accomplished a lot because my skin wasn’t as tomato red as normal but I know that I have a much better chance of being successful in my next scheduled workout and getting back on track faster. Leaving with the sense I didn’t work out hard meant that I listened to my body and didn’t aggravate any pending issues. Our bodies are extremely intelligent because they tell us exactly what they need; we just have to listen.

So as long as you are moving, then you are progressing. Sometimes it is sideways and sometimes it is backwards but that is how we truly create ourselves. If we keep pushing forward with our heads down, we can miss the forks in the road. And if we don’t make decisions on which direction to go then is there any value to the direction we are going?

seuss-direction-you-choose

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