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Now THAT'S Impressive!

Sunday, February 06, 2011

I was a lazy bum yesterday. Opening Night of my show on Friday night meant we partied until 6AM! Needless to say, I did not make it to my 9:30am Zumba class on Saturday morning. I didn't move off the couch all day. I didn't shower. I didn't even stretch. I was Disgusting with a Capital D. Ugh.

Today started out very similarly. But I was determined NOT to make it Day 2 of couch lethargy considering I'm about to sit for 3 hours or so and watch the Superbowl. I had to get out and go for a run.

The weather in Chicago sucks. It's dark, it's snowing AGAIN, and though it warmed up a bit, that has only contributed to lots and lots of water from the melted snow in the streets. Massive, cold, slush-puddles at every corner.

Not 2 minutes into my warm-up walk, my feet were SOAKED. This was not going to be a fun run. I still can't run the sidewalks because half of the people in my neighbourhood don't believe in shoveling. Most of the sidewalks are still partially covered and are "single lane traffic" only making it difficult to get past Sunday walkers coming home from brunch. So I ran down the middle of the streets, dodging cars the whole way. Every time a car passed me, I got slushed. Yey fun! The best was the fire truck at mile 4.02. I could see the end of the street that would end my run. The only thing between me and the finish line was that big red truck. As he came towards me, I quickly realized that he wasn't stopping to let me by and he was very clearly larger than any of the cars I'd gone head to head with so far, so I jumped into the snow bank, resulting in a full leg soaker to let him by. Lord have mercy. But I finished my run!

One of the best things about today though - despite the snow lashing my face as it came down, the sopping wet feet, the slush, the cold damp weather, one of my shoelaces coming untied mid-run - was a young family with a baby who watched me run past. As the mother was strapping her little one into the car seat, she looked up at me, smiled and said loudly enough for me to hear over the music in my headphones: "Now THAT's impressive!" I took out one ear phone, grinned back at her, gave a breathy "Thank You!" and kept right on running. Determined more than ever to get through this run.

Sometimes the voice inside you is strong enough to carry you through. Most of the time, my voice is pretty powerful at talking down the negativity that makes me want to quit early, or not even get out there in the first place. But on days like today, when the external forces are screaming at you to stop, it's equally as important to listen to those outside voices to draw the strength to keep going. I am very grateful for that woman today. She gave me energy and a renewed spirit and that was exactly what I needed at that point in time. I finished what I set out to do - a 4 mile run in under an hour - and I'm better off for it. And she's right, that is DAMN impressive!
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