Saturday, February 22, 2014

Taking Risks and Why your critics don't Count!!!

The Man In The Arena - Teddy Roosevelt  Reminds me of showing... But definitely describes many other parts of my life

You know I have been wanting to write about this since I ran Myrtle Beach - well jogged it. When I made the decision not to race and run it easy, I did so knowing that people would wonder about my time.  They wouldn't have the decency to call me, message me, or connect with me but they would go behind my back and look up my time and make all kind of assumptions. I knew this would happen and it did. 

People if I wanted to share my race experience with you. I would have. I would called you like I called/texted you and told you how disappointed and frustrated that I could not run the race I had hoped to be able to be able too but I was embracing the experience and knowing it part of my journey. 

I was going to show up, be the best me even grinding though a tough run knowing I was not going to even come close to my slowest half marathons time and that people YES were going to look up my time and judge me and my experience. I was a bit upset about that and my husband asked me why I even cared? I do not know why I cared but I did. 

But guess what I remembered this writing by Theodore Roosevelt the Man in the Arena which gave me some defiance in the face of judgement and superficial concern. Guess what people? Unless you are running with Hashimotos or thyroid disease, you do not get to judge my experience. You have no idea the highs and lows of this devastating disease. 

Sometimes I will be on top of the world and running is clicking and sometimes for no reason at all running becomes oh so difficult. It is not the same sort of I am having a bad day difficult and it is not the I am out of shape cause I have not been training difficult. It is something so completely different. My husband asked me what is was like when I told him how difficult that 13.1 was for me. It is sort of like when you are sprinting as hard as you can and you just need to stop cause your heart is pounding, your breathing is going erratic and you feel like you are going to puke - yup that is what a bad running day feels like for someone with Hashimotos. 

So unless you are in the arena and getting knocked around yourself, I am not interested in your feedback or superficial concern. 

When you step into a following your dreams, you are going to get beat up, sometimes things are not going to work out, it is going to hurt like hell, and you are going to get knocked around a bit.

It is not about winning or losing or PRing, it is about showing up! If you show up in the arena, you are going to get your ass kicked around a bit but breaking through to your dreams can not be done without the courage to show up and face something you know maybe not turn out well. 

You have to have the courage to jump, take risks that might not pan out, you must not listen to your critics, you need to risk your heart being broken 10 times over and trust life to help you mend it.

And than trust that the ass kicking is taking you in the direction of your dreams, goals, ambitions.

Live, Love, Be Courageous and above all else DARE GREATLY!

Monday, February 17, 2014

Stay Open

life does not have to be perfect to be wonderful

I saw this the day after I ran the Myrtle Beach Half Marathon and it pretty much summed how I was feeling. 

Let's first start by saying that when I had registered for Myrtle Beach Half  was well before my downhill marathon attempt at Charleston. After Charleston, I made myself a promise that I would not race again until I knew I was healthy and ready to go. Going into Charleston I knew my thyroid health was iffy at best. I knew things had not felt good in the days leading up to the race but I didn't listen to my intuition saying this is not good Jamie. I was registered so I would run. I ignored the signs and tried to tell myself I was going to be okay on race day. I wasn't okay at all and I paid both a physical and emotional prices for not listening to myself.

Flash forward fours weks, I had been feeling better than ever, running 3 awesome workouts and putting the miles in. I had 100% planned to train through Myrtle Beach Half. No taper, continue workouts and run Myrtle beach for fun and maybe a little faster than fun if I felt good. No racing though!!! I knew this but started seeing stars after a few great workouts. The oh how fast can I run this started flashing through my mind. This was stopped just 3 days before when I felt that old, familiar heart racing in the evening on the Thursday night 2 nights before the race. I took Friday off from running and by Friday afternoon when the decision to go to Myrtle Beach had to be made. I made the decision not to go run it as I knew that racing heart was a sign that something was off with my thyroid. It was a difficult decision and I shed a few tears while discussing it with my husband. Sometimes the decisions you need to make are not the ones you want to make. 

Well my husband said "are you sure you want to do this - cancel" and I was 100% sure I was not going to race. He called the hotel to cancel and guess what? We missed the cancellation window so we made a very quick decision to go as not to have eat 2 nights hotel and 1 race fee. We'd go and have a nice weekend away at the beach. I would run but not race. I promised myself I would under no conditions put myself in harms way and I would run easy. The things is when the thyroid goes Hyper (racing heart) running can be dangerous and I needed to watch my heart rate. 

On race morning, I was super happy to be with my sweet family that rolled out of bed at 5:30AM to get me to the race start. They were so sweet, loving and supportive as they dropped me off in the pouring, cold rain near the start. I got to see several friends at the start and wish them well. I ran without a garmin and knew I was going to run by feel. Crazy thing is when I am in hyper phase running at any pace feels difficult so I ran at a pace that allowed my heart not to feel funny. Anytime I felt that weird heart is working too hard feeling, I backed off and just tried to take my mind off running by chatting with people along the course. I knew the pace to be somewhat slower than I even thought I would run when I was chatting with a marathonor and he told me he was right on target and told me his average. I was like geez really and I feel this bad at that pace. I am so happy that I made to decision not to use a garmin because I think I would have gotten discouraged and upset if I saw my pace. Instead I focused on what I could control which was my attitude and my experience. 

I finished at a time I had not run since I ran my second half marathon when I first started running 10 yrs ago but I had finished and with my sweet family there for me. I was very satisfied. Later that afternoon, I would shed a few tears of frustration but those passed as I napped away the afternoon in a super cozy and awesome resort getaway. The beach, ocean and beauty of watching my children chase each other on the beach in the afternoon renewed my hope and love of life.

This thought came to my mind - it(life) really doesn't have to go perfectly to be perfectly beautiful. That these times when we are raw is when the beauty of life emerges. Your heart just has to remain open to receive it.

Life is beautiful! Stay Open!

stay open #soulnotes

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Beautiful Life

Struggles are required...

So I promised myself that I would write more often to inspire myself and get my thoughts out. Remind myself of my goals everyday and keep focused on enjoying my journey. 

I have had a great week of running. I have been pretty proud of myself to manage the miles with working and mommyhood. Although by Friday I was worn and woke up this Saturday morning so tired that I didn't get up and run the 16 miler as planned. I crawled back in bed as I decided to get more sleep and put off my run till afternoon which I do immediately after writing this blog post :-)

As I reflect back on my week, I most excited about my quick recovery from the flu. I was able to get in 2 very high quality runs this week. With the 13 miler with ended up being much quicker than I planned as I thought I might be still recovering but by midway through I knew I felt great so I let the wheels go! And than on Thursday, I had no idea on I would feel after still on just a week from flu and the big run on Tuesday. I wanted to be restraint in my run but as I settled in the reps at 6:44 pace, I feel super comfortable at that pace so I let it go a little faster on each rep. Funny thing is I made a deal with myself that I would only run 3 reps of 10 minutes if I didn't feel great. I ended up feeling better and better with each rep so I let myself run the full 1.5 mile which turned up to be 10:30-11:00 minutes in length. 

I am super excited about having 2 consistent high quality and fast runs. I have not run this fast and felt this great in a long time. I can remember some of the workouts before the Hashimotos where I was flying. The one that sticks out in my head always was a 6 X 1 mile session where I ran progressively faster mile repeats with the last one at 6:09. This was almost  1 1/2 years ago and at that time I was sure to be on a PR racing roll. Little did I know my life would take a detour for a while. I am so happy to think I am back and I AM HEALTHY and that I AM HEALED in Mind, Body and Soul. 

I remind myself day in and day out that I am healthy and that I am fast. That all the work that I have put in the last 2 years no matter how fast I was running all are going to come through one day. I think these past runs just reflect what has been there all the along but being masked by the Hashimotos. 

For what it is worth, I have become more in love with my journey and have peace that I am heading in the direction of what was promised. I have been more free in my attitude about my running and my goals. I stress less and I trust more! 

Life is Beautiful! Live it!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Handling the Curve

Definitely something I need to keep in mind at this time and all times.

This past week didn't go as I had envisioned it when I planned my return from vacation. I had this idea that I was going to get out of the gate hard and start training hard again. Start putting in the miles that I was logging in the fall, get rolling in my new coaching position, and ah it was all going to beautiful. Than it wasn't! Start of the week 2 solid runs in, digging outfrom piles of laundry, getting the house back in order, get the kids back to school - this smooth reentry into life and training was derailed when my head started achy somewhat awful on Tuesday evening. Not only did I wake up with the flu on Wednesday but we woke up to snow in the south. No school!

Blah but my kids were suppose to go back to school and I was suppose to be running awesome miles. NOPE!! Enter the curve ball.

Snows days, Fever and body aches for 2 days! Yay!! Party time - right?? Honestly though it wasn't that bad. My kids took pity on their sad and disheveled mommy and treated me very kindly as I laid in my bed for 2 days straight. I finally started feeling well enough to enter some sort of land of the living on Saturday and by Sunday - I ran!!! I ran & it was glorious - well not all that glorious but I was running. ah!!

You know what - I am proud of myself for not getting mad and pissy about this past week. I handled it well. I stayed positive and happy even as I lay in bed with the unpacked bags and clothes from vacation all over my floor as my kids trashed the rest of my floors throughout the house.

For my attitude, I think I was rewarded with a quick recovery and back to running just 4 days from being sick and 6 days running hard again. Today I was able to crank out a 13 miler. I went into the run thinking I don't know how long I can run or how fast by I played it super cautious. Started around 8:57 and than into the 8:40s for 3 miles when that felt good, I just kept moving the pace faster and faster end decided to tack on a 15 minute Tempo to end of the run. Pretty pleased to cover 13 miles in 1:46 minutes with the 15 minute portion 6:35-6:58 pace.

My patience with the illness was rewarded!! Yay! Now I plan to get on with training....

Patience is the calm acceptance that things can happen in a different order than the one you have in mind.