60 degrees. Have you ever heard anything sound better? Well, it felt JUST as good, this morning.
Cool mornings, warm days. This is what September offers on the east coast. It’s likely one of the main reasons many of us live in this area. The promise of 4 seasons….hell, let’s tell the truth…..it’s these glorious fall days and the soft spring ones that create the book ends of winter, and offset the mounds of snow that come in between. Well, today was glorious. And it made it easier to walk out the front door for my first 4 mile run in a while. It made it easier to pack my JOY and to feel like a Fighter. It felt….like the New Me. The one that trained and Killed that Half Marathon last spring. It was great seeing you again Girl. Stay, Stick Around, Let’s be Lifelong Friends.
Four miles – let me lay it down for you. My 5 minute warm up takes me from the front door, around the corner — down to the street sign that marks my Start/Finish line. I love that sign. It has come to embody HOME for me. Running HOME and seeing that sign is just Awesome. But walking those 5 minutes toward it — to Start — they are pretty awesome too. This morning, my mind was at Peace. Full of Calm. I shook out my arms, breathed out and released my Doubt. This 4 miles was going to happen. This 4 miles was about Joy, and getting ready for tomorrow. For the Start of my Marathon Training Fight. The New Me was back — and she had done this before. It was a powerful remembering. Because there is one simple truth in life when it comes to Believing, and here it is. When you believe something can be done, really believe, your mind will find ways to do it.
That’s it. There IT is. The simple truth that took me from the Couch to the Finish Line of the Half. So I’m returning to it — as a Compass to take me from Here to the Finish line of the WDW Marathon. So I begin again, the same as before. Not with BIG, GRANDIOSE Plans. But with a simple plan that involves Today. Just Today. I’m going to do what Today requires. I’m going to give Today my all. And come January — I will string together all my Todays — like paper dolls connected at the hands — and they will carry me forward. Forward …To the Start Line of something Grand!
But not Today. Today started at that all-too-familiar street sign. From my Start sign, I travel down the street to the big HILL, and head down. Out past the traffic light, around the corner by the school, and onward — onward toward the Lutheran Church on Old Stage Road. Out to the Church is 2 miles. An Out and Back to the Church was what Today Required. 4 miles.
My pace was good, my mind felt good, my body felt great. No aches, no pains, no fighting for breath. In my mind was a simple mantra. I Want This.
Yeah. 3 words that said it all. LOL, like Marathon Brian has told me (more than) a few times. “No one is holding a gun to your head and making you do this.”
True. As I did the dishes and cleaned up the kitchen last night, I rolled that question around in my head. “Why are you pushing yourself to run, Diane? Why?”
The answer was those 3 words. Because, “I Want This.” I want to push myself to achieve something SO outside of my comfort zone. Just like the Half Marathon. A year ago, a race (of ANY miles), let alone 13.1 miles — wasn’t even in my frame of mind. Not on the radar screen of my life at all! When I did it —- something happened. My entire belief system around Who I Am — cracked & changed. The Old Me was dead. She died right there at the Rutgers Unite Half Marathon Finish Line. Truth be told, she died weeks earlier on Old Stage Road during any one of my training runs….I just didn’t know enough about what was going on inside me, to realize it at that time.
I Want This. I want to push myself out of my comfort zone……so I can create a new comfort zone. A place where pushing myself physically becomes where I am comfortable. A place where — when something NEW is suggested, I don’t reel back and pull back, as if avoiding the bite of a rattle snake. I want to lean into it. I want to be drawn into new things. I want to become comfortable, being uncomfortable.
I ran 4 miles this morning. I set out with the goal of not walking. Truth — I walked 6 minutes of it. [2 minutes at the end of mile One; 1 minute at the end of mile Two; 1 minute at the end of mile Three; and 2 minutes coming up the darn HILL]. Ok, it wasn’t perfect. My run wasn’t what I wanted it to be — ie No Walking. But my Run was AWESOME. It was Fuel for my Soul! Don’t be confused, my goal is (and will always be) to build that pace where I can keep going without walking. So I’m going to Keep At That Goal, and not give up on it. I’ll try to “flip that switch” every single time I run. But I’m going to Celebrate My Success. I ran 4 miles, dammit!!! And it felt GREAT. I felt like the Diane who earned that Half Marathon medal. I realized today, out there, that I haven’t felt like HER in a long time, not all summer. So my goal is to ensure that I feel like HER every single run. She was Kick @ss. Correction. She IS Kick @ss!
Besides, I’m just at the beginning of my Training. The butterfly is just a caterpillar, just starting to eat leaves. The thought of forming a chrysalis isn’t even in my mind yet. I’m just eating leaves. Building up. For ….Something! Something Big. Something Great!
Lesson for today — Nurture your mind with great thoughts; to believe in the heroic makes heroes. I’m on my way!
Ciao for now…..Diane