Waking up to something beautiful …

I have always loved getting my miles in and my workouts done before anyone wakes up. It has been my ME time for as long as I can remember. It’s not always easy, but one of the things that motivates me to get up and out there is knowing what I will see. Trust me, you don’t see a lot at first because IT IS SO DARK! But once dawn begins to break it’s a light show that never fails to take my breath away. This morning when I was out there I thought about how many mornings I’ve had the privilege to experience like this. At this point in my life, they are literally COUNTLESS. It’s funny, a much younger me could have never predicted how grateful I would feel this morning as I looked back across the years. Somehow a normal daily routine turned into something that would bless me far beyond my expectations. And all I kept thinking was, “WOW, what an incredible gift God has given me!”

Well, I hope you all have a day where you wake up to something beautiful!!!

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You got this …

I absolutely love my new Fitbit. It “talks” to me way more than my last one. It can be a little bossy when it wants me to get moving. But in the morning it always has something positive to say. It gives me that last little bit of encouragement that helps me get out the door to go run. It seems silly, but I actually look forward to seeing what it has to say. Like this morning, I woke up early and motivated to get out there and work on my pace. Last week I kept all my runs easy as it was my first week back to running after my race. But this morning I was looking to get a little more out of my run. I was pretty excited! And I guess my new Fitbit was too because it “told” me exactly what I needed.

Well, I hope you all have a day where YOU GOT THIS!!!

Doing it anyway …

Yesterday I got into a discussion about running and working out. Particularly about the numerous times I’ve been asked if I’ll ever stop.

That’s always such a strange question to me. 

I’ve been working out since I was 12 years old. It’s part of who I am and who I’ve always been. I don’t know anything different. Even the two years post back injury I did anything and everything my doctors would let me do (which wasn’t much, but I did it anyway).

I get hurt A LOT. I have A TON of setbacks. But I’d like to believe it’s because I’ve never stopped pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I love learning about the body God has gifted me with. I like figuring out what it’s capable of. This body of mine never ceases to amaze me. Seriously, WHOA! It’s also about chasing down dreams. I have a lot of them. Still.

Some days come easier but overall, it is NEVER easy to keep up this lifestyle. Trust me, it’s nicer to sleep in. What I do and how I do it is a choice I have to make every day. I choose to keep trying, fighting and living. This is how I am … and despite the pain, blood, fractures, sprains and tears it’s always been worth it.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you do it anyway!!!

Determined … 

Earlier today I wasn’t able to make it to the gym to get my miles in. I thought perhaps I would just skip it all together, but life has allowed me to surround myself with some of the most inspiring friends and family a girl could ever ask for. So at 9 p.m. this evening I walked through the gym doors to get those 18 miles done.

Why?

Because I want this and I want it BAD. I want to show up AND conquer the Twin Cities Marathon. I want to make my family, my mentors, my friends and myself proud on race day. I want there to be no doubt that I wanted THIS bad enough. And that I did EVERYTHING within my power to achieve my goals. Whether I fail miserably or exceed my wildest expectations, I want to know that I did my best.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you are determined!!!

Thankful to have to try, try again (even if the gym is closed) … 

I have chosen to keep a pretty darn positive attitude regarding my foot. And up until this morning, I had not wavered from it.

I’m going to tell you a little secret. It IS NOT easy to try to see that everything will turn out fine. That things have a way of working themselves out. To have faith in learning and life. I CHOOSE to think this way. From an outsider’s perspective I’m sure I look a little nuts. Heck, I have even been asked (quite a few times) if my outlook comes from good meds! Nope outsiders, I don’t do drugs and I’m not crazy. Accept it, this is just how I roll.

But I am human. And today I just about had a hysterical sobbing fit in the parking lot of my CLOSED gym.

Over the past 17 years of having children my training or working out has been done while they are asleep or in school. There are some occasions when they are with me too, like when I used to do my miles on the beach with Libs when she was a baby. Or now, when we go to yoga together. I just never felt right about taking time away from them to get it all done. I supposed “mother guilt” drives that. But to avoid it, I often wake up at “undead” hours of the morning. I am a pretty motivated person when it comes to this stuff, so it hasn’t bothered me. I love the quiet of the early morning. I have enjoyed more sunrises that I could ever count. And that feeling of replenished “me” sets the tone for the rest of my day.

Anyway, because of summer schedules and my foot, I have been very much out of my routine. And I HATE it. But now that all is settled (for a few weeks at least) I was excited to have today be my first early long cycling session at the gym.

When my alarm went off this morning I was up and at it! I practically flew out the door I was so excited. But when I got to the gym the parking lot was completely empty … and my heart sank. With the changing of my running miles to cycling miles I am dependent on my gym. I was told I can cycle but only on a recumbent bike and the gym is my only option.

However, it never occurred to me that I have not been to my gym on a Saturday. NOT ONCE since I have joined. I am always out doing my long runs on Saturday. But boy oh boy, did I realized it this morning! I couldn’t believe that all the times I have been there at 5 a.m. have been on a weekday. Who knew?!?! Definitely NOT ME.

So I sat there in my car for a few minutes. First, utterly frustrated at myself. Then, overwhelmed with the thoughts of having to modify my training days (AGAIN) to get these longer “rides” in. And then finally, a sadness washed over me. 

I wanted to run.

I just wanted to be able to go back to my early morning runs. To throw on my running shoes and be out the door. To do what I love, and have it be THAT easy again.

As I sat there feeling badly for myself, I thought that maybe this was THE SIGN. The one that tells me to just give up. To forget Twin Cities. TO MOVE ON. To find another race, another place, another time. But I just couldn’t remain in those thoughts.

I guess I have trained my mind and my heart to think and feel differently. Maybe it’s just part of my chemical make up. But I looked in the seat beside me. My walking boot with my earbuds, armband, water and towel. And I realized … there is a lesson here. There is value in this setback. Amongst all that STUFF and all my emotions, there is something in what happened to me that I must learn from. Perhaps mastering the two steps outside my front door should be at the top of that list, HA!

So, I took a deep breath, drove home, climbed back into bed and got some extra rest.

I have to be honest with you, I’m not sure what lessons I’m learning with this one. I almost wish my injury came from overtraining and not tweaking my foot the wrong way stepping off my porch. I could wrap my head around an injury that came from one too many long runs. This one, has me baffled. But that’s OK, because I am willing to figure it all out … and continue to do as I do … gratefully.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you are thankful to have to TRY TRY AGAIN!!!