Sunday, July 28, 2013

The Need to Recommit (over and over again)

I wish I was better at sticking with things.
Especially things that work and things that make me happy.
It seems like a no brainer- BUT- for some reason all of a sudden you wake up and think - why did I stop doing ____________________(insert wonderful thing that was great) ___________?

For me, it was running.
You guys know I was never fast, and that was hard for me to do something that didn't come naturally, but I still really enjoyed it.  Or let me rephrase that.....I enjoyed what it gave me.

I felt fit, I looked better, I slept great, I was more relaxed.  I loved the way I felt after a run...or just the thought of "hey, I ran 6 miles this morning and I am doing fine today"..... those kind of things are amazing.

But two summers ago I burned out big time. I had a bad chaffing incident in places that shall not be named (laugh all you want, but I was down...I mean down for days, and I hurt for months). No details will be given on that....

Then the accident happened, and running felt frivolous and made me upset.

Then, my awesome running partner got pregnant and her health dictated no more runs.  Boo.

That equals.....hmm....a year and a half of no running.

Once my partner was up and at it ( a c-section, brave girl) we just registered for a half-marathon to get us going.

I really doubted this strategy once we started running.  We were much slower, needed to walk more, and I literally felt the extra pounds on my body with every step I took.  We loosely followed this great program that I found on Pinterest via

I appreciated that it had rest days and encouraged you to cross train (which I didn't do a ton of, sadly).  We skipped the first two weeks because we were already close to our race.  No worries- this really did get us ready. (Note- I didn't do the 12 mile run on week 8. I stopped at 11 miles. I hate feeling tired for a race, and the long runs sort of wipe me out. I hope as time goes on I can conquer this, but for now I accept it and don't fight it).

We were nervous for the race, and agreed we were just going to try and match our worst times that we had for a half-marathon.  I just wanted to beat my first race, my slowest time.  Well, the morning of the race, we felt good.  Surprisingly good.  We ran the Bryce Canyon Half, and can I was gorgeous.  Lots of water stations (a must for beginners) and LOTS of porta-potties.  Really, these guys were great.

We decided to run together...and walk together. We knew we needed breaks.  We took them at the water tables.  We did great, visiting the first 4 or 5 miles, then putting in the headphones to find our groove for the rest.  
(my swiped photo from the email-  forgive me) I know it looks like we are walking- we aren't.  This is about mile 9.  We were doing good to finish better than our first race last year, and then my partner hit a wall. It was mile 11.  The strange thing was, I felt good. I felt really good.  I have never had that happen before (this was my 4th half marathon) and it really made me happy.  She told me to go ahead, and I did, with only a mile and half left.  

Here is the miracle... NO, I didn't have a fabulous time. It was my second best half yet.
 BUT....even better....I felt JOY. I felt GREAT.  My legs felt good, my breathing was good, my head was clear, and I felt so blessed to even be there.  To have the health to be running, to know my kids and husband were waiting at the finish, to know I got my fat butt up off the couch and made myself do this- in 3 MONTHS- it all just came swirling up to this great moment of happiness and peace, at mile 12.  I was so happy to finish happy.

That is why you should run.

Oh yeah, and your kids will think the medals are cool

Honestly, it was a great experience.  Much more than a runners high- just a true moment of happiness. And you don't have to be the first one done to feel it. I am living proof that slowly but surely can still bring you joy.

As we pulled away from the finishing area a young girl jumped out of a car ahead of us to puke on the side of road. My 13 year old turned to me and said, very seriously, "good job, mom."  The puking must have made it a little more real for him.  

By the way- this is my true badge of honor.
running toes

I know, it's pedicure is done for and my second toe is black.  But it didn't hurt at all while I ran, it still doesn't, but it  keeps getting blacker and blacker. I am sort of fascinated by it, so I haven't painted my toenails yet.  I can't wait to see it shed, if it does. Don't let it scare you off.  I look hard core to my kiddos.

Hopefully you can recommit to something you have let slip. 

Take it from feels so good to rediscover it.


XO Marie said...

So awesome!!! I love that you are always looking for happiness, I am too... Let's never give up!

XO Marie said...

So awesome!!! I love that you are always looking for happiness, I am too... Let's never give up!

Monica said...

Love the post Ramona. We never did have that chat about how to prevent the chafing issues...hope you got it figured out. People often think I'm crazy to keep running through pregnancy but even though I have slowed way down, it makes me feel so much better about myself and the rest of the world. Plus, I think it is so much easier to just keep running than to have to get back into it. Glad you are finding so much joy in the journey.
Oh, and the toenails, my second toenail on both feet is permanently messed up, it is a badge of honor.

Alison said...

You go, girl! I completely understand how easy it is to NOT do those things that are important, great experiences, good for you, bring you joy...I think that is one of the things we are to learn in this life, is how to not let life get in the way of these more important things (though life must still go on). We all should go back and read this post every so often to prompt us to ask ourselves, What am I letting slip away?