Today I feel like I’ve made some good improvements.
I started keeping track of what I’m eating with a specific goal in mind (having a real goal is big). I’ve been pretty diligent about sticking to the amount of food I’m allotted based on my goals. The scale is heading in the right direction and my clothes are minutely more comfortable but what really told me things were working right were the hills I climbed in my 4 mile run today. They weren’t “easy” but they were easi-er. I’ve been running more on a daily basis probably because I can but also because I feel like it and I haven’t felt like it in a while. Now if I could just get my butt to do some strength training that would be good. I feel really motivated, in fact I have already signed up for a half marathon in April and am looking to run a 5K (I never did 5K’s until this year) at the college my son will be attending. I’m doing that one and the half more so I have an excuse to see him.
I’ve started laying out my plan for next years races. I’ve missed running races and running with my friend Barbara and hitting the racing scene again reminds me how much I love it. I’m making improvements and as my house gets emptier as my kids get older and start their lives I need to have something for me so I don’t smother my husband. Everyone needs to have their own life and their own friends because it’s just that important. If you don’t, do it. Take it from someone who didn’t for a long time. You’ll need it.
I have been a runner now for nearly 5 years. In that time I have run for my life, for my sanity, for my health, for my peace of mind, for my betterment, for my achievements and many one off reasons. I run because it is now like breathing air. I need it every day that I can get it. I have had ups and downs, successes and disappointing failures. I have gone through 5-7 or more pairs of running shoes that weren’t always inexpensive. They are a necessary tool for running that I am willing to invest in like a car to get to work even though I live 3 miles from work. I have found many more answers and happy moments on the road than questions. I talk to God A LOT on the road. He probably thinks I’m crazy and maybe I am. I found my smile on the road when it had been gone for so very long. Who knew it would be there but it was and it greeted me like an old friend who picks up your running route half way through to join the fun. Some people do Yoga, some swim, some hike. Although I like all of that…except maybe Yoga so much, I run. My purpose in running is perspective on everything in life. Mine & others.
My secondary purpose in running has just unfolded itself, laying down in front of me not giving me a choice. Like one of those signs from God that I believe in so much and for which I have received several times at critical moments in my life. My secondary purpose is to help others through running. I talk about running like it’s therapy and it is for me. I express joy and comfort through running and it seems it speaks to people and they feel inspired. I like reaching people through the miles I run. I want everyone to feel the way I do or at least try to experience the therapy that I have been lucky enough to find. Running isn’t always fun but it has never failed me. I feel strong when I run even when it’s just 3 miles. I feel stress free when I run because I am pounding out negativity with every step. It is like drug free pain medication that I can use to self medicate and it’s addicting and therapeutic and I want everyone to see and feel what I feel on the road. I want to save as many people from the depths of where I came from just a few years ago. I can honestly say the movie “what dreams may come” starring the late Robin Williams is the best way to convey the horrible grasp it had on me and it leaves the viewer with what I can only describe as a dark, cold & creepy feeling. Now feel that every day all day long. Not a pretty place nor a pretty feeling. Running pulled me out and I know it can do the same for others so I share as often as I can. I invite others to run with me. I slow down to their pace and I have a wonderful time and I always hope they do too. Maybe my purpose is to show others that something as simple as running can be the answer. It can be anything really but running was my savior secondary to the Lord.
Some people have a calling and maybe mine is to encourage others and help others succeed. If so I feel like running is my tool and it’s a great one. Life is hard and will beat you down at every opportunity. If you let it, it will get you but if you stand up and give it the finger and say NO you can’t have me and you find your own way like I found running, slowly the bully will fade to the background and you can breathe again and find your path. I did and I want to help others do the same.
Running isn’t always fun. Going into it one day one step at a time is the how. No expectations no one to compete against except the demon. It will always be there but by keeping your eyes ahead on your goals and your feet moving one mile at a time that’s where it will stay. Sometimes it gets close because you might lose focus , keep going. There are good days with great runs and other days you just have to accept that not all runs are great and sometimes they don’t happen at all. That’s OK. Tomorrow is a new day. Try again and again and again. You don’t need fancy running gear, just good shoes and a good and positive attitude topped off with a goal. You’ll get there and if you need inspiration send me a message and I will be happy to help you find it. I found my screen name, SteelMonarch, on the road. Monarchs are beautiful and they start off ugly as EFF and morph into something beautiful…I am one and I’m made of steel because I’m tough as EFF and will never live “What dreams may come” again. I chose a Blue Monarch because they are rare and I feel like I am one of a kind in this world. There you have it…my simple purpose found through running and summed up by one beautiful creature:
Don’t Give Up LAL!
I work a lot of things out on the road. When I’m mad I run. When I’m sad I run. When I’m confused or happy I run. It’s just what I’ve come to do as I have journeyed through this running thing. I don’t know if I find wisdom on the road truly or if I take wisdom to the road and apply it to a problem. Perhaps I just think about things and pick them apart with analysis and thought and work through them as I pound away the miles. Sometimes I’m pondering someone else’s challenges and whether or not I let them work through it or intervene to assist in working it out. Sometimes you just have to let the process play out and let people have their own beliefs and others have opinions of those beliefs and just offer up a hug with no excuses for those causing the pain that another person feels. I can’t fix everything nor can I make people “understand” things the way I do. Maybe I just accept things and have adjusted to the fact that they won’t change. Some are not there yet and are just learning to deal with the emotional lashings of others and life that serve up shit burgers. Some are opinionated & cruel with their words that are bare-boned black and white colorless wire framed harsh assessments of a moment in time. My job is to tamper that hurt with optimism that nothing is set in stone and the world is whatever they make it. For the first time in my life I was forced to tell someone I love to use the hurt they felt as motivation and “prove the instigator wrong”. I shouldn’t have to do that because people shouldn’t say those things to others but some are wired differently from the rest of the world and just don’t get it. I feel my role is to keep optimism and positivity alive for those who need it and I find that strength on the road. I choose to help those in need as often as I can. Am I wrong in not trying to change the ones who don’t get it? I would if I thought it would matter but I know when something is a losing battle that is unwinnable. I am forever an optimist but there are just things that must be left alone. Those people are making a bed that they may not want to lie in someday but that’s on them. I can only work on my bed. These challenges are what I contemplate when I run. I guess sometimes I run for wisdom and strength and faith and patience and to figure out my job here on earth while I am lucky enough to be here. Sometimes I run to find anything helpful for the people that matter to me for when they need it. Sometimes I run to find it in my heart to keep accepting those who don’t get it and to discard negativity and remember why I am needed in their lives too. Sometimes I just run to be with myself and fat Brenna who is always behind me. I run for both of us because she helped me find myself again when I was lost. We run together a few strides apart and that’s perfect. I guess I run to accept me sometimes. Acceptance is a hard lesson to learn. It’s much easier to eliminate to stop the pain that but in a weird sort of way, pain is a teacher of great lessons and wisdom so I choose to accept and teach others to as well. I don’t know if I would call what I find on the road each time peace but that seems like a nice word to sum it all up don’t you think? Get out there and find your whatever it is and be happy.