Have you exposed yourself to your deepest fear?

“Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes.  You are free.”        -Jim Morrrison

Yesterday’s Stats (10/13/12)

Distance:    8.35 miles
Duration:    1:15;54
Pace:          9:05 Min/Mil (Average) –  5:19 Min/Mil (Max)
Calories:     1170

Arg!!   Grr!!  Immediately after I stopped running, I checked my stats.  I was off 6 seconds from breaking the 9-minute mile pace!  Honestly, this irks the mess out of me!  I know exactly where I blew the 6 seconds.  When I realized my pace was off, I wanted to turn around, walk down my driveway, and start run the route again.  I stood on the front porch loudly grumbling.

While running last weekend, I was frightened by a neighbor’s dog.  This dog is never allowed to roam the yard.   I always hear his bark from behind a wooden fence, but thankfully, until today, I have never seen the beast.

I knew I was in trouble when I came around the corner and the dog was using his hind legs, to ferociously kick dirt on his waste.  He scared the crap out of me.  I made the quickest U-Turn possible… heart pumping double time and all.

I’ve run twice since that day.  While I like my route that runs past this house, intense fear of being bitten by the dog has prevented me twice now from passing the house.

During my run I asked myself what else is FEAR preventing me from accomplishing.  I realize that a little fear keeps me from getting my best time.  Sounds crazy?

What’s my biggest fear? Dropping dead during or after an intense run from heart failure! Simply pushing myself too hard. Yeah, I’m fit.  I get a annual physical, but still.  We’ve all read or heard  stories of how top athletes have died after completing a marathon run or some other intense workout.

So today, I asked myself.  “Okay… so what if I died during or after a run?”

It would certainly be better than dyeing hooked up to tubes and breathing equipment squeezing out my last few breaths of life.   Heck, at least I would have checked out while doing something that I love and am extremely passionate about.  The fact is when our time is up, we can’t do a darn thing about it, and so as long as I’m taking care of myself and making smart decisions, my life is in God’s hands.

I didn’t spend a lot of time thinking about this fear. The tought was random. I did think about it long enough to inspire me to run harder today.  I ran harder, and it showed in my time.   Heeeey, I’m siked!


I run because it’s so symbolic of life

“I run because it’s so symbolic of life. You have to drive yourself to overcome the obstacles. You might feel that you can’t. But then you find your inner strength, and realize you’re capable of so much more than you thought.”
–Arthur Blank

Today’s run…

7.51 Miles
1:12:22
9.37 Minute/Miles (Average)
5:54 Minute/Miles (Max)
780 Calories burned

Somewhere around mile five (5) or so, the rain continues; it has not stopped.  My ear buds are wet and continue to fall out of my ears.  Jill (Scott) bellows, “I’m magnificent” and I agree.  I feel free.  I’m wet but it doesn’t matter.  I don’t care.  I don’t care that my natural hair is drenched, I don’t care that my new sneaks are wet, and I certainly don’t give a damn that it’s 50 some degrees outside.  My heart beats at a steady velocity.

Closing my eyes, while moving forward I consume a huge batch of cool damp, yet refreshing air.  My lungs and my body approve.  Another favorite song blares in my ear.  Oh, this feels so good! I am so happy that I could literally shed tears of joy.  It is so hard to explain.  I am engrossed in an intoxicating moment.  Nothing matters.  Physically I feel boundless.  Spiritually I am blessed.  I cannot think of a single reason to complain.  The drama of an earlier week is miles behind me.

The previous week had been one of extreme highs and lows —all relative to parenting.

Committed and active parents recognize crucial and defining moments; times when the most painful and the most difficult decisions are made, all for the benefit of our children.

It is easier to “talk-the-talk” than it is to “walk-the-walk.  A critical juncture presented itself.  Hubby and I discussed the issue and made an extremely difficult but necessary parental decision.   Carrying out the decision took me to an ultimate low place where I never envisioned for myself.  Afterwards, I meditated. I prayed.

As parents, we would like to believe that 18+ years of sacrifice, good teaching, and committed parenting will result in young adults who make smart choices.  Not true. Our children stumble and make bad choices, as we once (and sometimes still do) did. Nevertheless, we are there for them and continue to guide and to support them.

However, there are moments when tough love is the best and only medicine to administer.  Tough love is painful for both parents and our children–We both learn from this experience.  This I know.

That same week, I experienced a supreme high.  My nine-year –old, who is the fastest player on his Pee Wee football team, scored his first official touchdown.  The touchdown came as a result of his intercepting an offensive pass.

Once I realized that he had possession of the ball, I was content.  I knew that no one could catch him.  He sprinted 30-40 yards hugging the football as if the ball was his Sony DSI game and a playmate was trying to steal it.  Although he is outrageously fast, the coaches rarely give him the ball to carry (that’s another story), but he was ready for the opportunity and convincingly delivered.

I don’t know which was best… the joy on my son’s face as he bumped chests of a teammate in the end one or my hubby’s elation as he literally jumped, screamed, and punched the air in excitement.   His team won the game, which made the touchdown all the better.

Runners experience similar highs and lows.  Highs—when we are healthy, strong, and meet or exceed our personal goals; Lows—when we’re injured, wounded, experience setbacks, or simply have bad days,

“…but then you find your inner strength, and realize you’re capable of so much more than you thought.”

The sentiment is true.  Regardless if you’re running, trying to make it through a tough day with the family, dealing with a challenging week at work or experiencing a problem in another area of your life, seek out your inner strength because you are capable of getting through the difficult time. This you must believe.


Believe that you can…

 

Believe that you can run farther and faster.  Believe that you’re young enough, old enough, strong enough, and so on to accomplish everything you want to do.  Don’t let worn-out beliefs stop you from moving beyond yourself.”
– John Bingham, running speaker and writer

Today’s workout of the day

Distance:  10.23 miles

Pace:  9:42 min/miles (average)
4:48 min/miles (max) sweet!

Duration:  1:39:17

Calories burned:  1070

The goal for today was to complete ten (10) miles under 1:40. Mission accomplished! This is a great way to start my week.  Y’all have a great day and an even better week.

 

 


When everything feels especially good

“Me thinks that the moment my legs began to move, my thoughts began to flow.”
– Henry David Thoreau

Today’s workout of the day was a run

Distance:  12:00 miles
Duration:  2:03:03
Pace:        10:15 min/miles
Calories:  1206

Most distance runners will agree that once the body is physically warmed up, they get into a zone.  The zone is place where you forget about your distance goal for the day.  You stop thinking about your stride, your pace, and your mind freely wanders to unexpected pleasantries. Even if the mind is preoccupied by a legitimate pressing issue, the zone gently and magically thrusts the thoughts elsewhere deep into the brain.

When I’m in my zone, I feel like I am gliding through the air and everything feels especially good.

This morning I unknowingly startled a ginormous but beautiful black curly-haired dog.  He viciously barked and lunged at me, making serious attempts to get away from his owner.  A tight grip by his owner, kept the large beastly one from getting to me.

The incident abruptly took me right out of my zone.  My heart raced harder than any other parts of my run.  Stricken with fear for a moment or two, I felt flushed.  Several deep breaths calmed me.  But still, it took me about a half mile or so to get back into my zone.

“Come on girl!  Don’t let that darn dog mess you up! Relax!”  I said this to myself aloud several times.  I had to force myself to focus because I was wondering about other dogs that might come long this morning.

As I continued my run, I realized that although maybe not the exact scenario, but events occur during our workday or week that sometimes get us off track and cause us to lose focus. That loss of focus can lead to even greater distractions for longer periods of time. Hence, getting off track in our professional or personal lives, and not understanding the what’s or the why’s that occurred which put us in an unhappy place.

I am easily distracted.  The awareness helps me to overcome the challenge.  The awareness also motivates me to take preventive measures so that I can carry out goals and tasks.  Do I get it right all the time?  Nope, but I am work in progress for sure.

This is an example of one of the situations where an idea comes to mind while running and I try to apply it to other aspects of my life.

My run was fabulous this morning.  Initially I did not have a distance in mind.  About five miles into the run, I thought, “I should run this route twice today!”  So I did and it totaled 12 miles!!  Yay!!

Remember to Keep it movin and have a wonderful holiday weekend!

 

 

 


We run because…

“We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves…The more restricted our society and work become, the more necessary it will be to find some outlet for this craving for freedom. No one can say, ‘You must not run faster than this, or jump higher than that.’ The human spirit is indomitable.”

-Sir Roger Bannister, first runner to run a sub-4 minute mile

I did not feel like running this morning. I wanted to stay in my comfortable bed, snuggled under the covers, to sleep and then to read. I ran anyway.  Why?  Because of several reasons:

  1. I read yesterday’s blog post (to critique it) and the post inspired me to run anyway.
  2. Next week is the beginning of the hectic family routine.  The “routine” limits my  flexibly to run as frequent as I do during the summer.
  3. In October I will run the half-marathon in the 2012 Atlantic City Marathon.  I need to stay conditioned for the run because I want to beat my best time.
  4. A family member invited me over for brunch today–fried fish is on the menu.  Need I say more?

My running stats for the day are:

7.18 Miles
1:09:12 Duration
746 Calories Burned
9:37 Minute/Miles (Pace)

I’m so glad that I ran today and feel better for doing so. I hope that you have a great day!  Remember…keep it moving!


Running through the clouds and the rain

I run more than I write.  A balance between the two is better.  After each run, I update my Facebook, twitter (lexa82), and sometimes Instagram.  Rarely does my WOD (workout of the day) appear on Lexa’s Journal.

Starting today that will change.  The plan is to post my daily workouts or how I feel when I don’t get a workout in.  Perhaps doing this will motivate me to write more.

Today’s WOD that inspired this post:

Distance:               10.22 Miles

Time:                      1:41:26

Pace (Average):    9:57 mi/mi (minute miles)

Calories:                1097

Stepping out the house this morning, my sole thought was, I know that it is going to rain while I run, but please let the thunder and lighting hold off.

Dark gray clouds filled the sky, but I headed out anyway. I always run with my phone sealed in a Ziploc snack bag.  If it rains or I run through a sprinkler, the phone is protected.

Four miles into my run, the rain started.  A light drizzly rain, not the heavy rain that I ran in last month.  The rain was refreshing and kept me cool in the humid thick morning air. Throughout my run, it rained off and on, but not nearly enough to discourage or turn me around.

By the way, I especially enjoyed my run this morning.  Why?  No time restrictions, which means that I can run for as long as I want to.  It’s more fun this way.

Near the end of my run, I realized that I ran through clouds and the rain.  I stayed with the run. Ultimately I was rewarded by the blazing sunshine, which I can’t get enough of.

Today’s run is a good paradigm for the daily grind in our lives.

Some mornings, you get out of bed not feeling mentally and or physically right. Or maybe the day just starts out wrong: over-sleeping, car trouble, an argument, a sick child, etc…

From the onset, you can choose to ignore the feeling and hope that the negative energy vanishes.  You may play the victim for the day.  You know… “Why does everything always happen to me?”

You could also chose to acknowledge the feeling and make a willful decision to—mentally or physically—work through your challenge.

The “work through” could be prayer, meditation, yoga, and reading, focusing your thoughts on the positive aspects of your life, or another use of positive energy.

However it is that you mange to get through your funk, working through it is more rewarding.  Eventually the sun reappears.  Your situation, issue, or challenge may not seem as bleak or as dark as you initially thought.

I know!  I know!  I am old enough to know that my explanation may be oversimplified, but the notion is true. Our response to any situation will affect the outcome.

This isn’t my analogy.  Through readings, conversations with others, and life experiences, I learned this along the way. The energy that we put out is the same energy that we get back.

“… See the positive possibilities.  Redirect the substantial energy of your frustration and turn it into positive, effective, unstoppable determination.”

Ralph Marston