Two weeks ago I posted the following quote on Instagram:
This past Sunday, I found another 'somewhere'. I'm trying to accept 'things'; things about me, about my relationships, things about the way of the world. As I typed those words, I struggled to recall a quote about acceptance. Thank you, Google.
Right. That's the quote. This is a work in progress. I think I'm evolving, but at other times, I've fallen behind. Sunday morning, however, challenged me to accept the things I can't change and it gave me a much needed push to power through.
On July, 31st, I was scheduled for a 2 hour 50 minute run. It was my weekend with the girls, so I did a great job of prepping the night before. I laid out all my nutrition/hydration, clothes, extra waters and towel. The laptop was charging (ready to enhance my dreadmill experience) and the alarm was set for the early morning. I might have snoozed for 20 or so minutes, but ultimately I was ready for a 6 am start. The ritual of my pre-workout preparation helped motivate me through a dynamic warm up, but the elation quickly subsided and I tanked before the first mile ticked by. Like the previous runs, I couldn't maintain my pace and I opted to throw in the towel (figuratively AND literally) after 8 miles. I dried a few tears and took a quick shower. With a hot cup of coffee in hand and the comfort of dry, fresh clothes, I informed my coach that I would NOT be running an early September marathon. I also noted that I needed a break. As always, he was supportive and sensitive to my situation. Everything was going to be okay, but I was not accepting of my supposed failure. In truth, I hated running.
I tried to fake it a few times, even logging another 8 mile run the following Sunday (August 7th); however, that dance ended. Before the beginning of my acceptance, my weekly mileage was creeping up to 30, but quickly tanked to less than 10/week for almost 2 months. It took all that time for me to find comfort in making the right choice. It took all that time for me to let some things go. And, I took all that time to find a bit of peace in starting over.
This past Sunday, I ran my longest since August 7th. I planned to take things slow as it related to my morning routine; this approach set the tone for my run. I didn't fret about my clothes, they don't fit anyway; I wore the watch ONLY to capture my distance. Since my pace has increased dramatically, there's been no sense in clocking speed and stressing over paces I'll have to work hard at ever hitting again.
I warmed up and walked to the edge of the street. My route was already planned, um, kinda (thinking on my toes — pun intended — a strength, and routine of mine). I shuffled up the hills, rolling over the mountain; the fog, strangely, lifted me past the heaviness in my feet. I continued to keep my posture and focus without ever glancing once at the time on my watch. The only reminder I had for distance was the soft chime with each passing mile. I knew I would go over 5 miles and I was thrilled. Not once did I worry about how I looked, how slow I moved or how shitty I felt.
In my reality, I looked great, I moved at a good pace and I felt wonderful.