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70 days

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Ten weeks, 70 days.....that's it now.
NYC Marathon is approaching with each new day of traning. I've now finished another week and traveled 39.73 miles in the persuit of that NCY Marathon start line.

The mornings are starting later, the nights are beginning to close in earlier and there is a touch of coolness to some of the days. Where has summer gone? Did it ever arrive over here in GB? Maybe if I remember back hard enough it was here for a few days back in July. But there is something great about running in cooler temps and also running in the rain.

One of the things I like best about running at this time of year is checking on what soon will be my blackberry pickins. Yes, all along the roads and trails I cover I can see the ripening fruit and soon I will be taking walks to gather the late summer harvest. Many times I'll pinch a few berries off the vines as I run by to see if they are sweet enough for a trip back to pick them.

What has this got to do with my NYC training? It's that little bonus I get for being out there. I don't know how many other people see these yummy berries like I do and enjoy a handful of nature's on the road fuel. I like to think they are there for me and a handy carb snack when I need a lift. Just yesterday while out on my 10 mile run long run I was on my extra 1 mile cool down and there provided for me was that little extra blackberry boost to keep me going.

There are other bonuses to being out running, even when the weather is at its worse. Today while out in the mostly cloudy morning the rain showered down but for a moment there was a respite, and in front of me was the start of a rainbow. I hurried to get my mobile camera phone out of my pocket to capture it. Succeeding I secured it back in my jacket when I looked back up to see the full rainbow appear, I hurried again to get my phone, but just as I reached for it and looked back at the sky to snap, the rainbow had vanished!

That got me thinking about how quickly life things can be here, and in an instant be gone. Opportunities, people, moments, can vanish before we have a chance to look back at them. No, I didn't capture the entire rainbow on my camera today, but I did savour the moment of it. I will have to settle for the fraction I did snap, but that is better than just thinking about capturing it.

Not missing out means taking part. In 70 days I WILL take part, I will experience, I will have a rainbow moment!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BUFFEDSTUFF 8/24/2008 10:58PM

  Dang, Mary, I think I will be there with you in spirit. Oh keep making beautiful memories my friend. 70 days will soon be here.

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olympic Dreams

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

With the images of Beijing in our newspapers, magazines, on our televisions, and computers it gives one pause to ponder.
I ponder about a lot of things when I am out running. Guess it is the time alone and the opportunity to relax and free float my mind.

There are amazing athletes from each country out there in China. They are on the world stage and putting themselves out there to be immortalized for what they can do. Years of mental and physical training have gotten them to where they are at this moment. It has been their dream, their goal, their passion, their drive, their life.

What about my olympic dreams. I don't mean going to THE Olympics...no as I have not spelled the work with a capital O. I'm more interested in another use of the word...perhaps leaning towards the" doing something in such a way that it takes great effort, courage, determination, focus."Making an olympian effort.

My dreams can be just that, elusive thoughts that never grow to fruition. Nothing more than fleeting mind images that wander around but never meet with true action. Enough!

I have dreams and I have taken action to see them happen. I am being accountable for my training. I am being accountable for how I treat my body. It's passed time making excuses and dreaming about being THAT size, THAT number, THAT whatever else I am dreaming. Discipline and being focused is the mindset of someone undertaking an "olympic task".

Look at those images on the TV or here on the computer reports. Dedication, determination, concentration, drive, confidence,strength...... and any other word that you can think of that conjures up power. That is what I see when I watch these games. POWER! Whether the athlete finishes with gold around their neck, or staggers in their attempt. They are amazing.

I am amazing as well. You are amazing too! Just like that torch is lit at every Olympics, there is a torch burning for each of us. Do you see it? Do you even realize it's there? It signals, it beckons, it shows the world that THIS is the time. Never ever let that torch go out in your life. Keep it lit, keep the focus to be the very best you can. Run a little further, push a little harder, eat a little cleaner, be a little wiser. Give more of yourself to those around you, do that job a bit better, be there for someone! Be an Olympian....it's not just a dream!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Mary you put into words so beautifully what I have been thinking since the games began!!! I can feel myself pushing harder with every run!!! Taking the same path but running it better, stronger and maybe even a little faster each time!!! I have heard running is a metaphor for life!!! I am finally starting to understand how profound a statement that really is!!! Have a great day and may you run like Olympian in everything you do!!! Jackie!!!

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JILLWILSON2102 8/19/2008 10:18AM

    Mary - what an awesome thing to write for us. Thank you for sharing such powerful words. It makes me stop and think about how I am wired to do things in a certain way and how automatic my thoughts become from time to time. Maybe we could incorporate something of this in our next challenge.

You are AWESOME!! Jill

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SWIRLINGIRL 8/19/2008 7:24AM

    You are so inspiring! Thanks.

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Lighting a Candle

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I'm really pleased and proud of my family for responding to my call to a physical challenge. My family is all over 3,000 miles away. My siblings and children were each invited to join me and walk or run at least one mile on Sun/Mon in honor of those in the military who had become a causality of the Iraq conflict.

When I was out running my miles on Sun and Mon I knew I wasn't alone and that made the miles a bit easier. I thought of each of them in their respective US states doing their part. I also thought of the team of runners on route to the AFB near my son's house.

Today I received several emails on how some of the runs/walks went. Each of my family did great. I am thrilled that something I wanted to do lit a light in them. We did this together and it was a good thing.

There are so many people that light a path for me. I am thankful for their words, their lives, their message. They have taken the time to turn around and offer me a light so that my way can be made brighter. Their light when added to my own illuminates what I can do.

When I doubt my ability to do something I am not using that light which has been given to me. Did I even accept the offer of someone's light or did I refuse. I don't want to stumble in the dark on my own... as the saying goes, "it's better to light a single candle, then curse the darkness"

Take the light, so that you in turn can pass it on to someone else!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THENEWMRSL 7/30/2008 12:25PM

    God bless you for doing this! emoticon

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BUFFEDSTUFF 7/30/2008 1:31AM

  I was going to say Mary you are the best but another beautiful lady beat me to it ..........ah heck Mary you are the best:) emoticon

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    Mary you are the best!!!! Your words are so simple but profound!!! You have truly lit a fire in me!!! Thanks for being you!!! Jackie!!! emoticon

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Run For the Fallen

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

[Mission Statement:
Run for the Fallen is a collective of runners whose mission is clear and simple: To run one mile for every American service member killed in Operation Iraqi Freedom. On June 14, 2008, we run across America to raise awareness about the lives of those who fought, to activate their memories and keep their spirits alive, to support organizations that help wounded veterans and the families of those killed (Wounded Warrior Project, Yellow Ribbon Fund, HUGSS (Helping Unite Gold Star Survivors), and the 1st Lt. Michael J. Cleary Memorial Fund), and to aid the healing process for those Americans whose lives have been affected by the war. We refuse any political affiliation or agenda, but simply honor those who have fought, and those who have fallen under the American flag.]

I heard about the above organization through the running podcast Phedippidations in June. I thought it was such a great concept that I went to the website and learned more about what it is all about. That's when I knew I wanted to be a part of it due mainly to the fact that I am the daughter of a Navy Flier and the mother of an AF pilot and AF Reservist. One hitch, I'm over 3,000 miles away from my homeland.

But, where there is a will...and all that good stuff, I looked over the route and saw that the RFTF would be going very close to my son's house AND the US AFB he is assigned to. So I got to thinking, why not on the Sunday run the miles from his house to the connecting spot of the RFTF route and then on the Monday, run the miles to the AFB along their route! So I have committed to run approx 7 miles on Sunday 27 July and another 6 Monday 28 July, but why stop there.

I have written to my US family and said hey, why not join me on this!!?? Why not team up and see how many miles we can run, or walk to tribute the solders? So now there are miles committed from my younger brother, my sister, and my sons. Just waiting to hear from one more person to have them join us on this expedition. We can't be together to do this in person, but we can be linked over the thousands of miles that separate us for this common purpose.

Then on 24 August, the final day of the event, I am looking at how I can do a tribute run. The invites are out again to my family and they have responded!! Just a way of saying thank you to all those who have served.

If you would like more information on this tribute check out this link.


One Hundred Eleven Days and counting

Monday, July 14, 2008

......until the New York City Marathon!

Yes, that is all that remains until I run my 5th Marathon. I've actually begun my training today with a rest day.
My training schedule is taped to the inside of my kitchen cabinet, my spreadsheet is prepared and my mind is now in "Marathon Mode".

These 16 weeks are broken down to daily runs; speed sessions, marathon pace, long runs, recovery runs and strength training. My food/nutrition is being tweaked to make sure I'm as fit as possible.

All of this is done a day at a time. I've learned from past training schedules that if I look too far ahead, I get nervous, anxious and doubt my abilities. I've got 3 races planned during this time as well, and they will be taken as they come.

I know I can run this distance, I know I can do the training. I've set a time goal that would be a new personal best for me. I will keep that in my sites as I run my marathon pace runs.

So I take each week, each session as it comes and do what is infront of me. To do my best is my goal. Bring it on!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CEEBEE200 7/14/2008 5:05PM

    Wow, the New York Marathon -- that will be amazing, Mary!! You go girl!! :-)

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    Mary I'm one week and 13.1 miles behind you!!! LOL!!! I have my training plan in my organizer and I spent the morning tweaking my eating plan!!! I am hoping to get my weight back down to what I consider my optimal running weight of 118-122!!! This is soooo very exciting!!! Maybe if schedules permit, I could take a little side trip to NYC and run with you...not the marathon but maybe a lap of two!!! Much love and respect always!!! Jackie!!!

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TLB513 7/14/2008 2:21PM

    You can and WILL do it! And I'll be there, in mind and spirit, cheering you on!


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