Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Okay, here we go. I thought about all the things I wanted to say today in a blog, and then it all went out the window when I realized I hadn't put my DC plans into action yet and I'm running out of time.
So, here's the deal. I leave Sunday, around 11am for Washington D.C. for work training. I'll be there for a whole week. I'll be in class from 8:30a-4:30pm every day, but I have my evenings to myself. While I did check and discovered the hotel has a gym and a small indoor pool, I want to get out at least a few nights and catch the winter/fall air while taking in some sights. I've never seen DC at night, and I hear it's beautiful. I'll admit, I'm a bit worried, as Hubs keeps remarking to me that the crime rate is terrible there and I'm likely to get mugged and die while out on a run, but I have to keep telling myself two things that generally work for me 1) just be safe, people do it all the time and you don't hear about 10 people a night dying while on a run or walk in DC and 2) you're just not that special.
Okay, let me take a second to explain that last one, because I've gotten crap for it before. You see, when I was a kid I used to be afraid all the time. If I was told there was a 1 in a million chance I would get hit by a bus, I'd be terrified that I'd end up being that one. Well, I don't know if someone said it to me, or I just came up with it myself, but one day I decided I couldn't live my entire life in fear. So I started telling myself, "You're not that special." In other words, what are the real odds that I'm going to be that one in a million? (I know, I know, the odds are 1 in a million! *lol*) But, what are the odds? Is it more likely that I'll get hit by a bus today walking outside, or is it more likely that I'll be fine. So anytime I get scared to do things (go to NYC alone with a friend, go on a plane, etc.) I tell myself, "You're just not that special." Now what happens if I happen to GET that special and something does happen? Well, what can I do about it now? I'm not going to not live just so I don't die. That's just stupid. So I take as many precautions as I can, I am safe as possible and then I just do it. For this trip I bought a small wallet I can slip in my pocket. If I still don't feel safe, I'll tuck the hotel key and some cash and my cellphone in my bra and off I'll go...it wouldn't be the first time I went for a walk/run with stuff in my bra! (In fact, I do it all the time.) I'll walk with my head up. If I notice someone, I'll make sure they know I see them, but then look away as to not be threatening. And if I get nervous, I'll hum, or sing, or whistle. It's much better to be thought of as crazy than to be thought of as the perfect, silent victim. I'll walk tall and proud, head up, taking care to know what my surroundings are, and whatever happens, happens.
Okay, so onto the challenge. I kept thinking to myself, other than the general monuments and museums, I don't know much about what's in DC. I certainly don't really know my way around (though I've been Googling with street view for weeks, virtually walking around the city so I'll feel more comfortable once I'm there). And wouldn't it be more fun if I didn't feel so alone?! (Being alone also scares me...less and less lately, but I'm not a hugemongous fan).
So here's where you come in. In the comments below, I want you to leave me 3 things:
1) A direction. Left, right, straight.
2) A number of blocks or miles (in tenths...I'm not walking a marathon here!).
3) A song.
And, let me say, number 3 is super important because Esther's playlist is boring the crap out of her. Help me breathe new life into it, and attach your name to my playlist, so I can use you as inspiration to continue.
The idea is for me to walk out of my hotel, and follow the directions I'm given in order to get somewhere...take a Spark tour of the city, without any of you even realizing where you're leading me. Of course safety will have to come into play. I may have to divert directions if I reach a dead end or a freeway ramp or something, but it might be a little fun to try. (And thankfully, my phone has Google maps and GPS to get me back to the hotel safely.)
One final thing...if you know the DC area, feel free to suggest to me:
* good restaurants
* good walking/running paths
* good parks
* cool free stuff to do
So, Sparkies...what do you say? Do you want to take me on a tour of our nation's starred city? I promise to take pictures and report back where all I went...as best I can.
Here's your template:
Direction: (Left, Right, Straight)
Distance: (in Blocks or tenths of a Mile)
Song: (please give artist name too so it's easier to find on iTunes!)
Here's hoping this works!!
Monday, November 29, 2010
I hate to say anything in fear for jinxing what may happen...but I feel a wave of change coming over my life. Of course the weight loss has a lot to do with it, but it's more than that. I've changed. Things have changed, or could be changing. The world feels a little different to me lately. A good different. And instead of dreading the fall, I'm breathing in the fresh air and vowing to enjoy every blessed minute of it.
For some of us, most of us, good times come in like tidal waves. Big, and full, and dumping blessings upon us, but completely unexpected, and over in a flash as we try to reconcile ourselves with what's been left behind and try not to feel afraid for what's to come once the water clears. I'm feeling a wave like that coming over me, coming over my loved ones...and I doubt that I would be this intune to what is happening if not for my journey of self-discovery and self-love.
There are job possibilities afloat. One I thought had died, has been revived. I will know for sure next week what will come of it, but being allowed to hold fast to hope one more week has been like a breath of fresh air. Another possibility is not for me, but for my husband. He, too, seems different, and this opportunity looks good. There's no telling what will happen with it, but I'm just trying to be thankful for this hopeful feeling in my heart and mind.
On Thanksgiving Day, Hubs and I had a blow-up of a fight. It was loud and crazy and completely unnecessary, mostly stemming from the stress built up in me over the challenges of the day ahead. I soon apologized and we were good once again. And then, later, we spent three blessed hours alone together shopping. He was attentive. He wanted me to have not only what I needed, but what I wanted. It was a different kind of feeling for both of us. Reckless, to some extent, while still being responsible. We didn't nickle and dime ourselves, but we didn't blow our savings either.
Yesterday I spent my rest day working on the house, like I said I would. The most surprising part of that is that I did what I said I wanted to do. And I mentioned it to my mom later. I cleared out 4 boxes, even though I wanted to stop after 2 (throwing things away can be difficult for me, but it wasn't so much this time). After that was done, I cleared out a basket from another part of the living room and really got down and cleaned and swept the entire floor. Afterwards, I took Ethan out with me to pick up a few items at Wal-Mart. What started as a "let's look at Christmas stuff" and "I need a smaller wallet for D.C." turned into a bit of a spree on some much needed decorations. Why much needed? Because this year, unlike years past, I'm not clinging to the idea of the Christmas spirit to get me through, I actually feel it. I feel the chill in the air and it makes me smile. I put up a tree and it makes me want to hug my kids tight. I couldn't care less about presents right now (except my shopping list is still full and I'm nowhere near done on that), it's about the season, the feeling, the way people seem a little merrier, even if by accident sometimes.
And I felt merrier yesterday too, so I went to the grocery store and did the shopping for the week. I was good, got only what we needed, cut back where need be, and indulged where I could. And, as silly as it may sound to be proud of going to 2 stores in one day, I have to explain that 80 pounds ago that was nearly impossible. I would have been exhausted, too tired, lazy. I would dread having to put things away when I got home and having to cook, and I just would refuse to go. But yesterday I went, and shopped responsibly, and came home and put things away, and set up a tree, and started dinner, and finished it later, and cleaned a little more, and started addressing Christmas cards. I was a machine that wouldn't quit...and it felt so different from me, a version of me I always wanted to be but was held back from by the strain of the weight I was holding onto. It felt good to buy things for my family and myself as a reward for the new life we had been cultivating for ourselves.
One thing I didn't buy for myself was a $15 tree skirt. It was beautiful, and I wanted it, but I had to say no somewhere. I put it back and figured I'd talk it over with Hubs later. But later, Hubs took Ethan with him, and picked up the tree skirt I wanted and paid for it himself. It wasn't about need. No, we didn't need a silly tree skirt, it was something he wanted to do for me. And the reason he went to Wal-Mart at all was for tape, in order to wrap my present, so he could proudly place it under the tree. A gift for me.
And do you know what? Of all of this, do you know what means the most? Him. His attitude toward me. He showed up at my work today after his interview. I had hoped he would, but doubted it. He doesn't know the area well. And as I had just given up hope of him arriving and surprising me, I settled back in my chair and got a ring from the front desk to tell me he was out front waiting for me.
I just had to share today that while my world is changing around me, and while I think some of that may actually be to my eyes changing to the things already there, I have come to realize and understand and be thankful for the blessing that is this new change in our lives. We are different people, my husband and I. We are nicer to each other and to ourselves. The moment he realized I was serious and this wasn't just another attempt. The moment he saw me doing more than he's ever seen me do. The moment he realized I was taking care of myself, he jumped into this place of peace. Actually, we jumped in together.
It's not really a change I can describe fully. There's no date to mark on the calendar for this change in us. There are just these feelings and the moments when I look at him and want to cry because we have become the people I always hoped we would be - two partners, equal in every way, after the same goals and dreams, fighting the world together, and holding tight to one another in an understanding that one part is whole without the other, but that the other makes each of us more complete.
So today has not been spent worrying over calorie counts and fitness minutes, because right now I have a firm grasp. (Although I'm a little stressed over some trouble in my knee, but I've learned that continuing as normal has helped it to heal faster. Still, I worry.) No, today has been about this glow I feel inside. My life has changed. 80 pounds ago I was a different person altogether and, yet, the same. It's not that I deserve more now, but that I demand it. It's not that it's easier work being me now, but I'm willing to work harder to get it. When all else fails, I will remember that not only have I been changing physically, but mentally and emotionally and, yes, even spiritually as well. I don't know why or how it happened, but I have a feeling it's all connected - or, at least, it should be. And I'm glad to be feeling that change now.
Suddenly, my goals don't seem so out of reach.
* Under 330 by Christmas. (26 days and 6 pounds to go!)
* 326 or less by 1/11/11. (43 days and 9 pounds to go!)
* 100 pounds lost with SP by Valentine's Day. (76 days and 20 pounds to go!)
* Under 300 by Shane's 31st birthday. (5 months and 36 pounds to go!)
And further off?
270 by July 2011?
250 by September?
230 by December 4, 2011? (My PT's set goal weight..and a weight that made Hubs almost downright giddy to hear the possibility of! *lol*)
It can happen. If I keep working hard on loving myself and doing what needs to be done without falling victim to my own excuses. The belief in CAN is another change. I can. It can happen. We can do this. It CAN be done.
What has changed within you? For just today, please love yourself and remember that the mental part of this journey is more important than any time you might spend on a treadmill or elliptical. It's one of those big keys to life, so it goes beyond numbers on a scale. Learn to love yourself a little today, just a little...and maybe tomorrow, you'll love yourself a little more.
Sunday, November 28, 2010
So here it is...the result of my Thanksgiving week...
Starting Weight: 466.6
SP SW: 416.2
Last Week: 339.4
Goal this Week: 337.2
Actual Weight: 335.8
Loss/Gain: -3.6 pounds!!
Take that Thanksgiving turkey nonsense!!
And for those keeping track -
SP Total Loss: 80.4
Total Loss: 130.8
That's right...I've lost 80 pounds this year alone. Since April 18th I've changed my body, my attitude, my outlook, and certainly my fitness level!
80 pounds ago walking was difficult. I was slow. I needed breaks.
80 pounds ago my breathing was labored when I did anything.
80 pounds ago I was depressed with myself and just generally sad.
80 pounds ago I didn't think I could ever be thin, or fit, or worth it.
80 pounds ago I made a decision to try, but I didn't know how far it would go.
80 pounds ago I felt like the butt of every fat joke.
Now I can run. Short bursts, yes. But I love it, and I'm getting better!
Now walking is a breeze. I can make the mile trek to the market and back without a second thought in my mind.
Now I am proud of this still fat body of mine.
Now I know that I can have whatever body I choose to have, if I put the work in. And I know I'm worth the work it takes.
Now I know I made the right decision. Something led me to Spark, and it has been a catalyst for a new life.
Now I hear fat jokes, and they make me sad, because I realize that being fat doesn't necessarily mean that a person eats too much, or is extremely lazy. They could very well be like me, a person working on themselves whose body doesn't match the work she is doing, who goes beyond the expectations of what a person who looks like me SHOULD be able to do or handle. Weight is not important - heart, health, and mind are!
My plan for Thanksgiving was set. Start the morning with C25k W1D2, so I didn't feel so awfully guilty about indulging in a few family favorites - like the horrible for me cheesy potatoes and not-something-you-should-eat-too-much-of stuffing. As I went through the buffet line our family had arranged, I kept putting things back. I got a serving of something, thought I wanted more, added more to my plate, and then reconsidered and put some back. What I had left on my plate was - about 3-4 oz of mostly white meat turkey, about 1/2 a cup of stuffing, a serving of those cheesy potatoes, about 1/2 a cup of mashed potatoes, a couple tablespoons of low-fat, low-cal gravy, and a roll. I immediately handed over 1/2 my roll to Hubs, and then proceeded to eat about half of everything. Before long, I realized I was completely full. I felt a little guilty...there was still so much on my plate. But I had to push it away and let the guilt go. This was about me and what my body needed. I wasn't going to stuff myself silly just because there were starving people in wherever that might like my couple bites left of cheesy potatoes! I did have some of my aunt's famous tea (with real sugar in it), but I drank so much water that day too! And after lunch I tried to walk, but the rain was cold and pelting and I headed back in, defeated.
Some things I heard Thanksgiving day made my heart light. I actually had a full conversation with my sister, who has completed 2 half-marathons, and my cousin, who just completed his first 5k with an awesome time! Put me against them and I'm a nobody in the race world. But I didn't care. I walked most of my races, but I put just as much work into training for them. We talked about running, which I could now comment on because I ran part of 2 races this year and have started the C25K program - and love it! We talked about heart rate monitors and Garmins and how competing against yourself is the only thing that matters. My cousin wants to do a tri or a marathon someday, he thinks. My sister thinks a half is her limit. As for me? The board is wide open! I've still got so far to go, and so much to build on - and here is where that is a blessing. Who knows where I'll be this time next year? Who knows what my body will be able to handle? I keep thinking - how many 300+ pound people you know can say they run 3 times a week? How many have completed 5ks and 10ks? I'm doing great things already, so there's no telling where I might end up!
Other things I heard, the good and the bad that stuck with me.
My aunt, who I look up to as far as fitness is concerned: "I'm so mad that I'm full!"
*lol* She was saying what I was thinking as I'm glaring at my half-finished plate. And she gave me the permission, in a way, to be okay with not finishing it.
My sister: "So how much weight have you lost now?"
Me: "Well, I weighed in at 337 yesterday, so just shy of 80 pounds."
Her: "That's it?"
Me: "Uhm, that's 80 pounds since April 18th. That's a lot to lose in a little time!"
*sigh* We don't always get along. I'm trying to reason with myself that she meant it positively instead of how I felt it come across. I explained that I had lost about 125 since my highest weight, and she just nodded...but...*shrug* We don't communicate very well.
Oh, and my mom, when she saw me in my workout gear before my C25k run that morning: "I don't want this to sound bad, but I think you're losing all your weight in your boobs!"
Me: *laugh* "Mom, I have on 2 sports bras, so they're kinda shoved in right now." *lol*
So, now Thanksgiving is over and done with. I indulged in sweets that evening, I ate way too much food for dinner (I was famished after Hubs and I took a shopping trip around 4pm and didn't get back until almost 7pm!), and I felt awful the next day. I stayed pretty well on task. No workout Friday, but there wasn't a lot of time what with shopping, packing, and driving the 3 hours home.
Yesterday I got up and went to the gym and finished C25K on the treadmill. I felt like a champion! I generally set my running segments to a speed of 4.5 or so. I pushed a little here and there to 4.7, and laid back on one to a 4.3, but the last running segment I wanted to try a 5.0...so I did...and it felt alright...and that made me feel very good! I wanted to go home after, but I didn't. I did my 45 modified push-ups, 2 planks, and 100 crunches, then did a full round of ST on the machines. I kept talking myself into things, and I love it when that happens at the gym!
Oh, one more note about Thanksgiving - Hubs and I discovered that Old Navy had a few stores open Thanksgiving with everything in the store on sale. We found one about 30 minutes away and drove there together. It was the most pleasant shopping trip I've had in a long time! I just threw a bunch of stuff in the cart and then headed to the dressing rooms to try it all on. Walked out with 2 XL long tanks, an XXL sweater that is beautiful!, an XXL long T-shirt, and a grey cover thing that looks amazing on me (XXL). I could have bought XLs in some other things, but I wanted stuff that looked nice NOW, not later. The XLs fit, but were tight and showed a little more pudge than I like (but the XL tanks look great on me!). Hubs got a pair of nice khaki type pants, a button-down shirt, and a sherpa-lined hoodie. And we got the boys each a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. (Logan's says: "Addicted to Homework" and Ethan's says: "I'm not trying to be difficult, it just comes naturally." *lol*) Oh, and we got Ethan a winter coat, snowboarder style with a fur liner on the hood. We saved almost as much as we saved! (We spent about 158, we saved 145!) I'd say that was a pretty good trip! I caught the last of their online deals yesterday and got a new pair (smaller) of yoga pants and a thermal tee.
So, I feel proud of my Thanksgiving. I lost almost 4 pounds in the biggest food-driven holiday weeks! (Of course, 2 of that was likely from sodium flush from last week.) I accomplished most of my goals and let myself just be happy with myself. I'm getting to like parts of my body...even my legs, which are shaping up even better with the running!
* C25K Week 2 (M/W/F, probably)
* Eat within my, now lowered, ranges
* Still burn 2200 calories this week
* Drink 10 cups of water a day
* Plan and pack for D.C.
* Check in with the PT on Tuesday night
* The return of Zumba! *lol*
* Make a meal-list for the week and get shopping (today)
* Work on Christmas shopping
I hope you all had an equally successful Thanksgiving week!!
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
Last night I watched Eat Pray Love. It's a beautiful movie, but not exactly "amazing," as I had expected. Beautifully shot, beautifully acted, a beautiful script, but it was predictable...and I haven't even read the book. Still, there is the beauty factor, and plenty of great lines throughout the movie to keep me interested. (I'm a writer, when a line hits the heartstrings, I feel touched...a good script can do amazing things to a movie.)
Lines like this one:
"Then I looked at around to this place, at the chaos it has endured - the way it has been adapted, burned, pillaged and found a way to build itself back up again. And I was reassured, maybe my life hasn't been so chaotic, it's just the world that is, and the real trap is getting attached to any of it. Ruin is a gift. Ruin is the road to transformation."
But there was also this theme running through it about forgiving yourself and not being so hard on yourself. There's even a part where they talk about how Americans feel the need to do something in order to EARN a break. And, if just for a moment, I got defensive.
You see, I made myself earn that movie. I was nearly home last night. I had decided to skip the gym. I was giving into the me that wanted to go home and clean and watch Castle episodes and just be with my family. And then, after coming out of a quick stop at Advance, I checked the Redbox app, because I remembered it was Tuesday and time for new releases. Eat Pray Love was number one, and I've been waiting for so long to see it. I quickly reserved a copy and then this voice popped into my head...
"You know, if you really want that movie, you're going to have to earn it first."
What? Where did that come from? Even more surprising was my response:
Really? I know I have to earn this movie? Am I kidding me? But in my head the connections I made went so fast that I simply flew past them.
1) The Redbox is right across the street from the gym.
2) I was turning back toward town, and it would be stupid not to just stop at the gym while I was there...because I no longer had the excuse that I didn't want to go back to town.
3) Wednesday's exercise is going to be iffy, at best. No time, so there's not a real chance of devoting yourself 100% to it.
4) My gym bag was right next to me in the seat.
5) I would feel awful later if I realized I wasted a night in which there was a perfect opportunity to work out.
6) Line dancing was starting in about 25 minutes...and line dancing is fun.
So I headed to the gym, I changed into my workout gear, I grabbed a towel and my water bottle, and I headed upstairs. I walked 4 laps around the track, and ran 2 before stretching before class. I felt warmed up and ready to go. And an hour later I felt wonderful! Line dancing was fun! I was lighter on my feet this time. I hopped and bounced and shook my booty with the best of them...and I had burned a good bit of calories in the process. I had earned my movie.
And then, while watching the movie I made myself earn, I'm being told how silly and wrong it is to feel the need to earn things. I kept hearing these lessons in my head coming from the screen, like this gem...
* No man will turn a naked woman away just because she has a little pudge. Living a life of restrictive diet and calorie counting is exhausting, eating to fill your heart and soul is freeing.
Truth is, I've gone backwards on Liz's quest. While she learned how to eat in a more forgiving and taste-driven manner, I lived that way for years. I was always eating whatever I wanted, as much as I wanted, whatever tasted good to me. I didn't care about my size or my jeans getting tight. And now? Now I'm feeding my body the fuel it needs. I'm learning how to use food as a tool to survive. I still enjoy it, I still want to eat great food - but my idea of great food has changed. Those cheeseburgers at McD's look nasty and greasy now, and they likely taste the same. But a bowl full of roasted vegetables in olive oil and spices is like heaven! Somehow, this change in eating whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, and less processed foods, has led me to feel more connected with the universe. I, too, am having a relationship with my pizza - my whole wheat, feta cheese, spinach and mushroom pizza.
So, yes, I make myself earn it...and after thinking about the conflicting idea of that and the ideas represented in the movie, I realize that this is a step that needs to be learned as well. In the past, I didn't think I deserved anything. And now? I earn things in order to find some sort of happy balance in my soul and self-worth. I've done good by my body by working out and making a healthy dinner (whole wheat fettucine in a chicken and broccoli alfredo from SparkRecipes = yum! --- add a bit of salt and pepper though). And movies do my mind and spirit good because of the deep emotional connections I form with the words and the pictures on the screen. They keep me in touch with my emotions and fill my heart with thoughts of betterment. In my opinion, my quest and journey is about learning to earn it. And that's what I plan to continue doing.
I'm going to earn my Thanksgiving lunch favorites, like the sinful cheesy potatoes, by maintaining portion control, and starting my day right - with C25K W1D2.
If I want a sweet dessert, I will earn that by taking a walk after my meal with my family, and letting the food I've already consumed settle and digest. There is no reason I have to eat dessert immediately following the consumption of lunch or dinner. I tend to wait an hour or two now, and I drink a lot of water in between - another way for me to earn it.
So...do you have the "you gotta earn it" mentality or not?
Monday, November 22, 2010
I had every intention of sleeping in yesterday...but I didn't.
I had every intention of just taking a leisurely stroll...but I didn't.
I had every intention of exercising this evening...but I didn't.
Sometimes our intentions weigh us down. Having the best intentions when eating out, when making food at home, deciding whether or not to eat that last piece of pumpkin pie. Those intentions can lead to big stress and, worse, guilt if we betray them. But sometimes, in the best times, our intentions can be freeing. We expect to have a few slip ups and we vow to be okay with them, we figure our ways around them, and then we up and shock the heck out of ourselves when we do the exact opposite.
I expected to sleep in, but I started my day early instead.
I expected a leisurely stroll, but I ran W1D1 of C25K instead.
I expected to hold off my workouts until Yoga tonight, but I threw in a little one earlier too.
It's days like those where it doesn't even feel like trying. Days like those when it's not about what didn't happen or what should have happened or what we could have done. It's freeing. It's exhilarating. Those are the days I live for.
I don't know why I decided to do C25k yesterday. I just wanted to see if I could get through just a tiny bit more than I was able to do last time. The last time I pulled my hip flexor in the third running segment and limped home defeated. Running for the longest time hurt....a LOT. Like, more than it should. And I stopped trying to do it on a regular basis. There were times when I'd think, "I feel good...let's just try it out." And I'd go slow and steady and wouldn't overdo it and come out with a little more confidence. But it still hurt for a long time. So when I walked out the door yesterday and started the app on my phone, I just imagined how good it would feel to report back here saying, "I'm progressing with it!"
The first thing I did? I didn't start the app at the beginning of my walk. The last time I tried this, I ended up running in a bad, bad spot on my normal route. You see, I live in the stix, the country, the boonies, the hills of wild, wonderful West Virginia. Yes, we have paved roads, but I don't live in a town. When people ask where I'm from, even people from WV, I give them the name of a nearby town that is more well-known. You can tell how well a person knows the area by whether they know the name. And you can certainly tell if someone grew up here if they know of former landmarks that are now long gone.
There's a certain charm about this. The beauty of the back hillside when it's frosted over and looks like a blanket of billowing snow. The field that floods across the street, or houses countless deer or turkeys, or bails of hay - depending on the time of year. But there are difficulties to this living too. The roads can be a challenge. None of them are straight, or flat, or even correctly and fully paved. It's a patchwork of years past and years present, it's the turn up ahead and the magic beyond the next bend, it's neighborhood dogs barking, while horses come up to greet you and a rifle shot is heard in the not-too-distant woods.
So the last time I went out on my run, I hit the first running segment halfway up hill 2 in my route. This time, I wanted to avoid that. I waited a few minutes before turning on the app and getting started on the warm-up, and I think that extra warm-up time may have helped as well. When the run segment came, I ran. And then it was over. And I didn't much think about it. After the third segment I had a brief thought of, "Well, there! Goal completed!" but it was quickly followed by, "Just a LITTLE more." At one point I was worried. How much more? Would I injure myself again? I didn't want to push too hard!
We dodged cars and holes in the road and the rough shoulder, and I kept going, and thinking, and worrying, and telling myself not to worry. Finally I pulled out the phone and turned it on. 10 minutes left?? That's it?! And half of that is cool down! I'm doing this!
My route was silly. I ran my regular 1 mile walking route, the turn around being right before the biggest hill on the route. And then I got to the bottom of the middle hill and turned around and went back. Turn again on the big hill, and back down hill two. That's when I checked my phone. And Ethan was hurting. And I was getting pretty tired. I still had gas, but I had forgotten to hydrate beforehand. I thought about just going home. But when I checked and saw 10 minutes, I told Ethan he could go on home, but I was finishing this.
I hadn't planned this part out...and I was in between hills 1 and 2 and unsure when that ringing bell would tell me to start running again. About halfway up my hill, I started begging for silence. "NO bell! Not yet! Please! Just let me get to the top." I reached the top and had just enough time to sigh with relief before my timer ding-a-linged my next running segment. It was getting difficult, especially considering my last running segment had felt like running on clouds, and this one had given me no time to recover from the climb. I hoped there wasn't much more.
*ding ding ding* "Begin cool down"
What? What did that say?! HUH?! Did I just? A smile as long as the Nile formed across my face. The sun felt beautifully brilliant in that moment. The wind pulled back loose strands of hair and chilled the sweat over my arms and chest. I did it. I, me, this 339 pound woman, had done what she had once thought highly unlikely. A bad knee, sore legs from a killer workout the day before, who always hurt when running. None of it mattered. All that was left was a walk home...and I'd be lying if I told you I was anything other than cheery.
I talked to my son about some problems he's been having. It was a serious talk, about life, and about speaking up for yourself, and about trying new possible solutions to your problem. I couldn't have had that talk without that workout. I had some higher level of understanding in that moment about what it took to succeed. I just knew whatever problem was put before us, we'd face it, together if we needed, separately when we must - but we'd meet it, and we'd find our own way around it.
And without even thinking about what was happening, I heard another *ding ding ding* and the words, "Workout Complete" come into my ears.
I turned to Ethan.
"Mommy did it!" I beamed.
It didn't matter that he didn't understand the significance of what just happened. I did. I knew what was happening to me. And I wanted to shout from the rooftops that I had overcome, I had figured it out, I had struggled and come through the other side. And then I was home. And it didn't matter that my leg was cramped or my shoulder was pinched. I bounced up the stairs and whispered once more to myself, "I did it."
Do I look proud of myself?
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