• Current Reading List

    Peaceful Action, Open Heart - Thich Nhat Hanh*** Eat, Pray, Love*** Peaceful Living - Mary Mackenzie(daily reader)*** The Vein of Gold - Julia Cameron (this is a read a chapter a week type book)*** Dubliners - James Joyce*** Nursing: The Philosophy and Science of Caring - Jean Watson*** The Diary of Virginia Woolf. Volume I***
  • Two roads diverged in a yellow wood and I, I took the one less travelled by, and that has made all the difference.
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Catching UP: the running and weight loss journey

There really is no way to do that. Not fully. So much has been going on. I decided a few days after my last post that I wanted to write a book. I even came up with a title. Since then, I have been unable to write a single word. Writer’s block I suppose. Whatever, I am scared to death about the venture, but I keep formulating paragraphs in my head. Here’s to the hopes that I will at some point, get those paragraphs to paper.

For now, catching up on my life. I just emerged out of hell. Seriously, hell. This hell occurred over a period of 60 hours and involved 4 airplanes, much money I didn’t need to part with, 3 trips to the ED and a reduction in weight of 10lbs in three days. Oh, and two of those ED visits were in a rinky dink (well not really it was actually very nice for a community hospital) jip-joint hospital in NM.Damn them to hell. Oh wait, that was hell. So this sick puppy had to fly back to TN and cut short my visit to my mom and grandparents (well, since I was sick, the visit never started, so I technically just called the whole thing off).  And one more visit to the  ED (damn DFW and their delays which made me get home too late to go to my regular doctor) upon return to TN. Anyhoo, I am fine and better and all is well. I am pleased about the new number on the scale of course, but I will be damned if I ever want to go through something like that again to have those results again.  Notice I am purposefully being vague about details. It is enough to know that it was hell, and that I still feel as weak as a kitten.

 I am worried about what this convalescence will do to my running. Today I started to feel like I might just be an eentsy bit better (no extreme dizziness upon standing), so I decided to go for a run. Now, you must understand that when I am sick I always doubt the reality of my symptoms. I don’t think I have a proclivity for somatization, but like a good psych nurse I do worry about the possibility, because the doubt is always there. “Do I really feel this bad or am I just imagining?”, “Wouldn’t I feel better if I just got moving?”, “Am I just pretending so I can stay in bed?” “Am I just being lazy?”….these are some of the questions I ask myself, and plus I am worried about “getting behind” on my training schedule. So I ignored the fact that my legs felt like quivering jelly and out the door I stepped. I did run one mile and walk 2/3 of another mile before I decided that I truly don’t feel very well and back to semi-convalescense I head.

So anyhoo, even though I am worried at the moment about the possibility of lost muscle mass and lost training time, I overall think I am doing pretty good in my running. The going has been bumpy and I have had to overcome a lot of self-doubting, but I am everyday learning that I am indeed, officially a runner. Sunday before last, I ran 10 miles outside. I had been running on the treadmill, so this is quite an accomplishment. Also, last Sat (before full onset of above hell scenario) I ran a 5k with a friend. This was my 3rd race, and it felt amazing. I ran the entire way AND I was no where near the last of the runners. Okay, so I was also no where near the beginning runners either, but I am very content to be happily in the middle. My time was 37 minutes (by the race clock which is including the initial walking time as everyone gets moving). Oh, and this made 18 miles total for the week. The 1/2 marathon is just a little over 1 month away. i am going to be ready.

I am changing and I am learning more and more about who I am. Sometimes the changes are happening so fast that when I walk by a mirror I have to do a double take. “Who was that?….Oh yeah, its me…I like that girl.”


On Being Amazed

I often am amazed by various women in my life – this one going back to school, this one’s big accomplishment, this one’s physical abilities, etc etc. Amazed and inspired. I realized just a few moments ago, that for the first time I am really allowing myself to be amazed….by me. And why not? Why not amaze myself? It feels as if I am shedding an old leathery worn out skin that for some reason stayed attached for way too long. Perhaps it was not a skin at all, but rather a parasitic veil of thinking that I had picked up somewhere along the way. It fed on discouragement, self-effacement, and self-doubt. Perhaps it was cause for the short-lived nature of previous accomplishments – particularly in the realm of my body, my self-image and my physical fitness.

Shedding, shedding. My back stretches as it completely rolls away. There is tenderness in the reveal new skin and I hestitate to expose it completely to the light. Excuses creep in: ‘don’t you have like a million and two things that you need to be doing right now?’. I refuse to listen and into the light I burst.

I am amazed by myself. Reflecting back on the last year, really last 7 or 8 months, I am surprised and awed and proud. Last May I started preparing to start running. It took me 1 hour to walk 3 miles. Then slowly I started adding in some running. Initially just seconds at a time. Those first days, really first months, it was torture. I hated it. I felt ridiculous running at my weight and even more riduculous that I could only run for seconds. But I kept at it. Two days ago I ran 7 miles. SEVEN FREAKING MILES!!! It took me 91 minutes. I did walk a little, but only for about 7 minutes. That means I ran for EIGHTY-FOUR minutes. Amazing that I – who have been afraid of sports, afraid of activity, afraid of looking ridiculous – can do this, and I continue to do more. Oh, and I love it. Its not torture anymore.

I am amazed.

This morning I worked out at the little gym up the road. I was doing some circuit training on various machines – both strength and aerobic, trying to mix up my workout. Suddenly it dawned on my that I didn’t feel intimidated by or less than anyone else in that gym. That is how I used to feel. Especially when I was in the “men’s area” where all the weights are. Today I felt confident. I felt like I belonged there. I was working as hard or harder than every other person in that gym – and my size, my level of fitness didn’t matter. I was just there working out, enjoying my progress and sweating up a flood. I have muscles in places I didn’t know my body had a potential for muscles. Its quite fun really.  Amazing.

Lastly (for now), last night I squeezed….well actually I didn’t squeeze at all, I slid very nicely and comfortably into a pair of size 12 slacks. (I hate that word slacks, but dress pants sounds equally gross particularly when talking about these lovely pants). I haven’t worn them in too many years to think about and they fit better than they ever did.  Just last May when I started this running business I wore a size 20 and sometimes a 22. I have two more pairs of pants in the closet that don’t fit yet. Just two. Then its on to new territory. Amazing.

This year I want to continue to amaze myself. In various areas of my life. I want to continued to be amazed and proud of me and to not have the least little bit of shame about saying so. So there old skin!