Monthly archives: February, 2016

Thankful Thursday 2/25/2016

The last Thankful Thursday of February – the days seem to be turning over quickly now, or is it just me?

Here’s this week’s list – remember, these are only selected items, from a longer list!

  • Caffeinated gum – I left it off last week (figured you’d be sick of me listing it) but it’s back by popular demand
  • My triathlete friend from work, who’s really turned into an amazing support and sounding board – I can only hope she’s enjoying our conversations and finding them as beneficial as I am
  • I got one night of 7 hours sleep!
  • My enthusiastic chiro, who is chomping at the bit for race day to get here
  • Realizations and “aha” moments (now, what to do with/about them….that’s the work)
  • Making smart training choices….tough, but gotta stay healthy to keep training and get to the start line
  • Nuggets from one more mental training book (below, a quick read, and I’d say library instead of buy) –
    • Have a “relentless solution focus” – when you encounter a problem, anxiety, adversity, challenge, etc. ask yourself “What is one thing can I do to make this better?” and play the “can’t say I don’t know” game to make yourself come up with an answer! Then take action.
10 Minute Toughness mental training book

10 Minute Toughness mental training book

  • Reminders that people are good and kind
  • Getting home before the storm hit
  • DH’s yellow flowers are still holding up
  • Inspiring people and ideas and quotes flying at me almost faster than I can collect or absorb

Quotes from podcasts, heard while doing my Wed run (I’m a quote magpie/collector, probably a podcast magpie too)

“As long as there is breath in you, you can be an example to someone….Rethink impossible…..Create memories….We never know when today will be our last.” Helene Neville, nurse, cancer survivor, grandmother, woman who ran perimeter of USA. On the ToughGirl podcast (rec! guests are women who’ve taken on challenges)

(Amy) “wakes up happy….she doesn’t focus on what’s been taken away from her, she makes the most of what she has in the moment” Former pro triathlete and guide Susanne Davis, talking about blind triathlete Amy Dixon – they are training to try to make the US Paralympic Triathlon Team for the first Paralympic Triathlon in Rio in August 2016! They just won Tritonman over the weekend. On Babbittville Radio with Bob Babbitt, lots of fun interviews on that podcast (several with Meb!)

What’s making you thankful this week? Having any “aha” moments? 

 

 



Thankful Thursday 2/18/2016

It’s been an somewhat eventful week here at the REWR household, nothing horribly awful, but a number of those “I really didn’t need to have to deal with this” bumps in the road of daily life that seem to cluster when you don’t have time or energy to deal with them. But, as always, we persevere!

Boston yellow flowers

Boston yellow flowers

Some of the things I’m grateful for this week:

  • Meb and Des making the team!! Meb, as you know, is one of my running/life role models and inspirations, and I so wanted him to make the team. I had full confidence he would, but the marathon is a tricky beast, and that heat…. I’m a huge fan of Des, have been for years. Her under-the-radar approach, self-confidence, determination, work ethic, patience, and knowing herself and her capabilities (what they are and aren’t) are so impressive, and things I want to emulate. Her talent is undeniable. And major props for being coherent and well-read enough to come up with the “Sisyphean task” description (of her comeback from injury) within minutes of finishing the race!
  • The blogs, posts and articles by and about the hundreds of runners in the Trials who go by more than just their first name, and who we don’t know much, if anything about
  • Perspective, always perspective – found in so many places, like here and here and here  – especially when I can hang on to that perspective for even a moment to improve my thoughts, attitude, choices and actions
  • The resources to deal with the bumps in the road, I’m so so lucky
  • Telework, you have no idea
  • A moment where I chose to pause and respond, not react or engage, in a challenging situation
  • Patience, when I have it
  • Having moments where I know this collection of stuff is the makings of a funny story (hope)
  • Carbs, all the carbs – kabocha, sweet potatoes, Rice Chex, Glutino GF pretzels (and let’s count Arctic Zero)…seems the more tired I get, the more I crave them (or the less my twitchy tummy is willing to deal with anything it has to work on)
  • My thoughtful, funny, patient, understanding Valentine
  • My friends – don’t know what I’d do without you to listen to me, give me advice, support me
  • My sister, always understanding
  • A couple of days with sun instead of snow or rain
  • Veggie sushi – getting to be my usual post-long-run dinner, one of the few things that works
  • Professional, pleasant, competent, experienced service providers
  • More new running/endurance sport books to look forward to (racking them up!)
  • More Marathon & Beyond back issues
  • Track and field on TV – now back to indoor meets, but how awesome was it to be able to watch the Trials Marathon??!
  • Podcasts – spoiled for choice, overwhelmed by an abundance of good ones and good guests
  • Fuzzy socks and slippers for warm feet at bedtime

What are you thankful for this week? What bumps in your road will be funny stories in a week, month, year?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



To Those Running The Olympic Trials

First, CONGRATULATIONS!

Qualifying for the Trials is a huge accomplishment, one many of us can’t even dream of.

Getting to the start line seems almost a separate accomplishment – staying healthy, getting funding, making the trip safely, avoiding last minute bugs.

I don’t know any of you. Some of you I’m a fan of, some of you are elite or professional, some I’m a fan of, some of your names I recognize from media coverage. Most of you, I’d only know your name from reading the start list.

But each of you has an amazing story. I wish I knew it and could learn about your unique journey.

Each of you has worked hard to maximize your physical gifts and made choices – from little to big – that weren’t easy or fun in the moment or popular (sometimes even with yourself) – from getting up early and going to bed early, to skipping treats and parties, to doing extra training (or not), to deferring dreams, taking extra jobs, getting loans or crowdfunding or selling things, to moving away from home and loved ones….the list goes on and on. Kudos on doing what it took to get where you so wanted to be.

Each of you has had moments – or days or weeks or years – filled with pain, struggle, disappointment and frustration – when you could have given up, wanted to give up, had people telling you to give up, maybe did give up (briefly)…but in the end, you said “I can and I will” and got back up to try one more time.

I hope you know you are or can be an example and inspiration to others, adults and children, for your dedication and hard work, for pursuing your dreams and goals.

I hope as you stand on the start, that you can breathe in the moment, the wonder of where you are and what you’re about to do. I hope you can sear it into your memory so you can revisit it and share it with others.

I hope you have family, friends and other supporters who are not only there with you on Saturday (in body or spirit), but who have been with you through the good times and the dark times. I hope you can share this experience with them and help them understand how grateful you are for their role in the day and getting you there.

I hope you run the race you want to run, whether you are competing with others or just with yourself, and that you remember, during the inevitable tough patches, how strong you are, what you’ve overcome, and how lucky you are.

I hope you cross the finish line healthy and happy with the effort you’ve given and that the memories, the wonder of it all, stay with you for the rest of your life.

Know that I will be cheering for each and every one of you with a heart full of admiration and respect and tears of pride and joy in my eyes.

You are all winners.

“The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part, just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle. The essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well.” -Baron de Coubertin

 

 



Thankful Thursday 2/11/2016

The US Olympic Marathon Trials are this weekend!! You know where I’ll be after my long run.

However, I’m very sad to say that the fabulous Deena Kastor, who I so wanted to make the team again, has pulled out due to a glute strain.

I’m grateful

  • that her reason for pulling out is a minor injury rather than a major one or illness for her or her family
  • for her grace (and grit), attitude, and sense of humor – she was joking with someone on twitter about swapping glutes shortly after the announcement
  • that she’s sharing what she’s learned and how she’s changed – saying “it’s a strain I would have taken the risk to push through 8 years ago. Now, I’m more conservative.”
  • for her example in life and in running of positive attitude and perspective, re-focusing immediately on what she CAN do (cheer teammates) rather than what she can’t – and she’ll still be providing commentary for the regular LA Marathon on Sunday, Valentine’s Day, her 43rd birthday!
  • for the inspiration and role model she is to me in running and life
  • for all the joy she’s given us during her amazing career so far

Get well soon!

Still on the women’s Trials front, here’s some great words about Des Linden – rooting for her – from an article in the (sad face) last issue of Running Times…I can emulate her example of self-control as well as her dedication to hard work (and she loves books!):

Des Linden from RT

Des Linden from RT

And on the men’s side, of course, go Meb!

I’ve loved seeing the stories of athletes I’ve heard of – and of athletes completely new to me – and their individual journey to the Trials. I’d love to read a book with a brief story (1-2 pages) about every Qualifier –  stats, brief bio, brief interview, maybe a photo.

On to the rest of this brief list of things I’ve been grateful for lately:

  • My friend’s last radiation treatment (30, over 6 weeks) is completed, and he can now stay in his house with his wife instead of having to be hundreds of miles apart
  • Heat in the house
  • A dear friend is having a terrific set of interviews with potential employers – hoping she gets multiple offers, she deserves to get to choose!
  • Caffeinated gum – but I’m thisclose to chewing a whole piece rather than a half…and we know where that leads!
  • Last Thursday’s run
  • When my late-start Boston-timed long run last weekend turned into a ridicuously-hard, leg-aching, GI-distress mess, grateful I pulled the plug instead of destroying myself trying to gut it out (no pun intended). And that I was on my treadmill and close to facilities. Sometimes DNF means “did nothing foolish” (ok, it’s “fatal” but let’s not be overly dramatic) Thinking I got a tummy bug DH had the day before, that explains at least part of the stomach issues and the exhaustion during and post-run. The aching legs I’m working on.
  • That my recovery run the day after that long run was fine – not that I wasn’t sore at all, but it was fine, which was better than I was expecting
  • I took a (long) shot at an interesting opportunity – at least I can say I tried – and I’m grateful for the support I got in thinking about it and the encouragement to go for it from a number of folks, near and far, generous with their kindness and time
  • My dear friend K
  • Small companies where you can reach someone when you’ve screwed up an order, who get back to you ridiculously fast and help you, making something important to you work out perfectly!
  • My triathlete friend at work
  • Waking up to emails from friends
  • Walking to the local running store at lunch on a day in the office and chatting with the folks there (I’m getting to be a regular, they’re fun to talk to)
  • Toothpaste and toothbrush and dental floss
  • Hot water
  • My chiro and the resources and ability to avail myself of his expertise and wisdom, humor, and spirit which he so generously shares
  • More old issues of Marathon & Beyond, enjoying well-written articles with new info about athletes I know and introductions to “regular” people and races – I may just wind up buying them all
  • Seeing new books coming out over the next months, treats to look forward to
  • Speaking of looking forward to – in addition to the Trials and a long run, this weekend brings a special memory for me, a dear friend’s birthday, Valentine’s Day and a holiday….should be great!

What are you thankful for and what are you looking forward to?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Thankful Thursday 2/4/2016

Welcome to the first Thankful Thursday of February – little over a week to the Olympic Marathon Trials! (yes, I am REALLY excited to watch)

This week’s photo is one celebrating winter – taken before Snowzilla hit – from the “house that decorates for everything” in our old neighborhood….the guy does such a good job that I make it a point to drive by occasionally when I think he might have a new theme going.

winter decorations

winter decorations

Now, on to this week’s list of some of the things I’ve been thankful for lately!

  • Being able to help people or connect them, usually via Twitter – I can’t express how happy that makes me
  • My triathlete friend at work, so appreciate her support and critical eye on my plans and activities, and what fun it is to discuss my training and her training
  • A tweet that about an opportunity that makes me think of exploring possibilities I hadn’t imagined, what changes I’d have to make, what I really want, what’s really important to me…and the support of DH and friends in brainstorming and thinking out loud, whether anything ever happens or not
  • Supporting some folks who do a lot for the running community
  • Blog posts, like this from Lauren, this from Liza, and this from Devon (just a few of the gems I’ve loved lately) that really resonate with me and start me thinking.
  • Training help, back and forth Q&A and support, from runners on Twitter – pretty spiffy runners too!
  • Good recovery runs, sloggy recovery runs
  • The chance to try again
  • Podcasts
  • Times or days when I’m a little less sore
  • Runs where I work really hard, physically and mentally, and manage to pull off the plan!
  • Runs where I’m smart enough to change the plan so I can run another day – consistency, and thus the ability to train consistently, is the key to progress. It’s not glamorous and may not let me brag about destroying myself in a workout, but then again, I haven’t destroyed myself in a workout. I’d love to be able to just crush myself and progress that way (and I do push myself), but that doesn’t seem to be my path, whether it’s my physiology, age, medical history, life, whatever. Respecting my own situation and needs is important – we all need to do whatever works for us.
  • Back issues of Marathon and Beyond – every time I read one, I find others mentioned I need to order
  • Caffeinated gum (yep, I’m hooked)
  • Jelly Belly Sport Beans – getting me through some runs, one sugary nugget per mile
  • Runs where I didn’t really “want” to run, and I got myself to do it anyway (that big picture discipline again!)
  • Ostrich and fries night
  • Rice Chex
  • Heating pads, heated car seats, electric blankets
  • Cardinals and morning birdsong in the pre-dawn hour
  • Whenever I’m able to let go of anything, big or small, and feel lighter and freer because of it
  • Finding new dreams to dream and new goals to pursue

What have you been thankful for lately?