Wednesday, October 22, 2014
There you go, then.
I have a goal. I reach them once I set them. Commitment doesn't come easy.
I love my financial security, but it was never my dream to sit behind a desk. I love my big fat office with a view of the downtown museums, but I can't be chained to the window blinds.
J is with me for a minimum of four more years. I have an opportunity of a lifetime, and it had nothing to do with money.
I thought I wanted to play with the big digs, but they howl a song I've heard before.
I'm going after this dream with as much passion as I went after my career.
She's worth it.
So am I.
Friday, October 17, 2014
Damn this had been a tough few weeks.
My attitude sucks. I'm dressed for a run sitting in the lobby at the gym, ready to hit the downtown streets.
Frowny face girl, you were happy once upon a time.
I feel like the traffic-stuffed streets do. Overwhelmed, indifferent, an aging network of patched repairs.
I'm sorry to disappoint you.
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
I miss triathlon season.
Now that I'm running more, the loneliness has crept back in. Really, Mara? Must we sip again? Isn't your thirst ever quenched?
Sit and have tea once more. At least you are company, even if you ask the hard questions. Twist my words and accuse me of being legalistic. Tell me I'm not a good friend.
Maybe if you challenge me enough, I'll find my resilience.
Until then, I run for no reason.
Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Just one post in September?
So much is going on. There's that word again- "busy".
I finished my third triathlon in Kerrville, and I can't believe tri season is over. I can't believe I made it through one event, never mind and entire season to complete my goal of three. I wasn't sure I could finish since I sprained my ankle in August, but physical therapy does work. I'm sorry to see it end, but I'll be back next year. I'd like to do at least one Olympic distance race. (Isn't there always more to reach for??)
Marathon season has begun again, and I'm happy to focus on the run. No more sharing days with bike and/or swim. Just you and me, baby. PT also addressed my hip issues from last year, and I'll be released from that treatment next week. It's amazing to run without pain, and to not need extra recovery days that should have been running days. I can fly.
Happiness feels easy lately.
Monday, September 22, 2014
Friday, August 29, 2014
If the money is good, then why do I want something else? Is it just human nature to be dissatisfied?
I think they pay me a whole lot of money to use my brain and keep myself behind my desk. My eyes get tired of the pixels and my back hates the confinement.
Beach dreaming, yoga missing selfishness. I do play my flute. The notes sound so fat, and for once I don't want to be tied to the music. I let my fingers caress the keys and my breath linger wherever it pleases. I turn my back to the stand and stare out the window as the notes sing for me.
What have I given up in my ruthless quest for security and independence? Nobody hears the music because I only play when I feel free.
Thursday, August 28, 2014
Saturday, August 23, 2014
Not quite the end yet; I have two days to go. I fully realized this as I passed my director on the trail this morning.
Add a couple weeks, and hello to the big four-oh.
Moms visit came and went, as did the family reunion. I especially appreciated my time with the oldest members of my family. I am loved for the best possible reasons, and I am overwhelmed with the deepest gratitude in return.
On turning forty, I'm pretty excited about my new decade. The last year was unbelievably wonderful. It felt like dreams that I'd been working towards finally came true. I made it out of my last job and into the one that I set my sights on years ago. I finished my yoga certification and my first two triathlons. My credit and finances are actually "good". I quit talking down to myself in the mirror. I healed and laughed and loved.
I have a couple small goals this coming year. I'll ride my first bike race and try to qualify for the 2016 Boston marathon. I'd like to give more time to my friends. It would also be nice to be a gentler, softer version of me, whatever that might mean. We'll find out ;)
I want to be the best mom for my kid. If that's the only goal I achieve this next year, I'll consider it a success.
Wednesday, August 6, 2014
Thursday, July 31, 2014
Just when you feel strong, you get shoved from behind. Maybe it's your own fault, maybe it's external, maybe all of the above.
Doubts, questions, fears.
I think I have moments of everything.
Peace, calm, acceptance.
I'm all over the place. I don't know whether I want to be left alone in a cocoon or if I need to be around my friends more. Something needs. Maybe something is too much.
I think I'm trying too hard, in any case.
Pre-race jitters? Definitely some of that.
Missing my kid? A lot of that.
Get yourself together, girl, cuz this is a mighty fine life. 39 is beautiful.
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
One morning this week, as I sat in my car at a traffic light, a man with a shopping cart full of trash bags loaded with cans pushed his way across the crosswalk in front of me. A lady who appeared to be in similar life circumstances followed him. As I noted her shabby top and wondered about her situation, she looked up, right into my eyes. I felt surprised, and a shock right to my heart. I felt sameness, difference, accusation, shame, compassion, and understanding. My outward reaction was a flash of a smile through my bright red lipstick. Then she was gone.
Another tri this weekend, this one a little longer than the last. It feels more real. I've been practicing my swim and run, and less on my bike. Balance does not come easily among the three sports.
I do feel balanced. I'm happy at work and I'm preparing for J's return home next weekend. We FaceTime a lot and I pretend to tickle her cheeks through the screen. She misses home and cuddling with her parents.
My love loves me.
I am content.
Friday, July 18, 2014
I came home from work today, ate, and went right to bed. Sometimes tired catches up and runs me right over!
Last Saturday I went for a long run, then took a rest day Sunday. Monday, I took a vacation day and went for my longest distance yet on bike. Hello, hip! Ouch! I was out for the next two days for recovery. I ran short yesterday and took today as another recovery day, to play safe. Ten road miles tomorrow, still playing it safe. I actually missed swimming this week, and this was not a good example of a good training week.
Also this week, I escaped to see a writer/poet/singer/friend perform some kickin live music at House Wine. On a weeknight!! Check out Jim's blog at http://jimtrainer.wordpress.com
I had to treadmill at the downtown Y to make this work for my schedule, and now I know why I love my home gym so much. The treadmills were so close to each other that I could reach out and touch the guy next to me, and he kept looking at my pace. Ugh! What do you care? My ego turned up the dial and chicked his ass. Damn I'm competitive. I noticed my ego, and I let it push me ahead. I used it.
Also, I had to shower and change there, which I'm starting to get used to but I'm a little high maintenance. It's not that I expect people to think highly of my appearance; I feel I'm doing the world a favor by putting on all this makeup. I keep working on this self esteem issue.
This week in pics:
Rainbow over downtown as I drove to work Wednesday.
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Repost- something didn't allow this to publish June 1.
I cycled the course for my triathlon, minus the swim and run component this morning. Turns out the cycling component is the same as what I've run as a half marathon for the last two Decembers at Decker. It looks so different on a bike!
Man, my hand hurts. Holding the handle and shifting gears is almost too much after a few miles. I don't let it slow me down. We'll get this fixed in a couple weeks, and worse than pain is taking time away from my sports. Grrr. I hate rest.
I have the last trail run of a series of three tomorrow at Reveille, the only DNF I have on my resumé. It's been a couple years since I've tried the course, but I feel ready and happy. This one is mine. The Houston Marathon lottery is June 4, so I've got distance on my mind this next season. Hopefully we can mix that with my new triathlon skills and start training for a big boy tri.
I have some other ideas for next year that aren't -shock- athletics related. I'm still gathering my thoughts, but these goals feel good and come from the depths of what makes me happy.
I don't believe I've ever seen so many cops in Austin. I had to be on my best behavior during this morning's commute. Go home, Mr. Pres. We know you're just here to raise your $$.
J has been gone three full weeks. That's it?? Surely I'm counting wrong. While she's gone, I drink too much coffee, push harder in every workout, and loudly bitch about the cellulite on my ass.
The truth is, I miss my girl.
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Florida, I hope you feel blessed! My girl flew away from this land of Texas on a big jet airliner yesterday. I know she's in for a lot of fun. She lives life in a grand way!
C and I took the week off before she left to give her some serious attention. We made sure she was full of parent time before she went packing. I can never get enough. She is my breath. No matter how well I'm breathing on my own, I look at her and it only gets better.
After she left, I tried desperately for some retail therapy. Oh no! My favorite store went out of business?!?! And the little shops nearby were also empty. There was one left in the little strip mall that looked promising, but the power was out, and they weren't allowing customers in. Powers That Be, you defy my desperation! Even the sporting goods store around the corner was without electricity.
I went home. I ran.
C grilled up some chicken and made our house smell yummy. There are still good things.
I miss her.
Monday, June 9, 2014
And I had fun!
I won't go into too much detail about the event itself. I'm happy to have earned my triathlete label after so much training. Accomplishments are always a mixed bag, a sense of pride combined with a restlessness because I don't want it to be over. I'll definitely do this again.
First things first; my right hand needs some attention. I got my MRI Friday and the doc expects to put me into a fiberglass cast tomorrow. I'm glad it will begin to hurt less.
Thursday, May 29, 2014
Wednesday, May 28, 2014
Since I posted such a yummy-disgusting lunch, I'm following up with my yummy-health dinner.
That meatloaf filled my belly all the way to cycling practice this evening. I didn't need a preworkout snack at all, so that pb&j will go in my daughter's lunch tomorrow. I had no digestive problems from the greasy slab of meat, just a few burps...
Cycling training is awesome. I'm only with this group one more week. I'll miss the coaches and the varied workouts. I've met some neat people, and ran my brick while chatting with another girl this evening. Lone runner no more. I'm really going to miss everyone.
Cheers to a sense of community, bricking, and good choices.
I left my food at home. Normally, I'd have oatmeal with coconut shavings and honey. I've taken to drinking coffee again, which my stomach doesn't like due to the acidity.
So I skipped breakfast and had a heavy lunch. As I walked to the cafeteria in my building, I thought of good choices like a turkey pita for lunch and a pb&j for a pre-cycling snack after work.
I scanned the menu board as I walked in and discounted the hot selections as unhealthy. They almost always are. I went straight for the pb&j. Success! Then... things took a turn for the worse. I saw the coffee area. I doubled back to get a tray to carry the pb&j and a coffee. The trays were by the hot food, and dang it if there wasn't a big slab of meatloaf staring at me, and no line waiting. Fried okra? The only good side this cafeteria makes. Right next to the mashed potatoes.
In an effort for accountability, and so I remember exactly why I have to walk a bit at mile 2 at this weekend's trail race at Reveille, I'm posting this:
We'll see how bike training goes this evening. That double brick workout may end up feeling like a couple bricks in my stomach.
Cheers to good health!
Monday, May 26, 2014
My J girl turned 13. Wowza. She is beautiful, weird, smart, and more than labels. She is obsessed with Dr. Who, puns, and her friends. She loves me. :)
I'm still training for my triathlon June 8. Swimming has been the hardest sport for me, though I have no fear of the water. I had to learn freestyle, become "swim fit" make time for team training and self practice, and make friends with cold, sight-rendering lake water.
Cycling is fun and I'm strong on my cheap bike wearing running shoes. I have good balance and can power out the hills. Team training is after work, so getting organized in the morning with all my gear has been an exercise in itself. My right hand is fractured- I fell on my side at Hell's Hills trail run in March. Steering sharp curves, managing water bottles, and general time spent on the bike keeps it sore. So does opening door handles at work and holding the steering wheel in my car. MRI after June 8 if it still hurts by then.
J just walked in and asked permission to go on a road trip with her friend. The mom would drive, and it's STORMING out. Three cities away. THREE CITIES AWAY.
Monday, April 28, 2014
Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Life has just been rocking along!
My new, actually not-so-new, job has kept me quite busy. I have a lot of thoughts about "busy".
I'm still finding time to run, and recently celebrated the one-year anniversary of my hip fracture. I had hoped to work my way up to a marathon by the end of this season, but healing takes time. Things that are broken can't be forced back together. They choose their own pace and demand respect, no matter how much you may want otherwise. No marathons for me by the end of May. Perhaps this winter ;)
I have changed my gears a bit and I'm focusing on triathlon training. I never thought I'd be brave enough to tackle new sports, but here I am in week five, practicing six days a week. There are so many fears to face and self-talks along this journey. I live with a premise that I'm weak, easily broken by others, and I think that sports are my way of proving my worth to myself. When people ask why I workout, I can't say this- it's socially unacceptable! I say it's because I can't sit still. Will I actually sign up for a triathlon? Who knows... I do have my eye on a certain one in June. Right now, the training is enough. I love it.
Balance isn't easy. J is heading off to FL again this summer. I want to go with her. I want to quit my new fabulous job and laze and run in the sun. Last night I skipped swim practice to take her out to dinner. I want her to know that she comes first, and that training is NOT my life. I love her.
All is well in this ridiculous life. Some days are hard and lonely, but when I pause in those moments to question the truth of that, I find myself surrounded by unconditional friendship and love.
Thursday, March 13, 2014
I should have run this evening, but I have a long run in the morning. Sounds good and happy...
Except I don't feel like doing that particular long run. I'd hoped to shift my schedule a little, get into Austin early, run, shower, and get into work late. The effect: I'll work late, get home late, and see my daughter late without the option of changing my mind as the day wears on.
I wish I'd listened to my heart and my body today and headed out to my favorite trail. My kiddo was still on her Spring Break vacation, and I wouldn't have been missed. I could have run again tomorrow evening without too much psoas soreness if I kept both distances short.
Girl, are you learning anything yet?
Friday, February 14, 2014
The truck behind me with his brights on.
The guy in from of me using a Q-tip in his ear. Does he keep the fresh ones in his glove box for easy access? Where does he put the used ones?
The kid at the stoplight by IT opens his car door to lean out and spit on the pavement.
I am happy in my car. Sunglasses. Music. Coffee. Running late. Driving easy.
Friday, February 7, 2014
Whew, I can barely keep up with the busy-ness I've created! I tried to take my Christmas tree down this past weekend and got 75% of the way through the project. I have hopes for this weekend.
I adore my new job and my quiet office space. The lighting is just right and I have a bit more autonomy. It's also busier. Being new isn't easy, and the job itself is reactive to the needs that land themselves in my inbox. Now! Everyone needs this done now! So I do. Mistakes have been minimal and comraderie has been maximal! I like this play yard.
I'm not sure when my commute grew, but the hour drive in the morning has started to seem longer that the finite time that it actually is. Add a traffic accident, and it can take me two hours to get home. Cranky girl.
All is well, really. I haven't felt the need to write much because everything good or bad passes and I feel observant. I don't feel chatty on many subjects. If you talk too much, it blocks the view.
I love and live and laugh and cry. I'm experiencing life more and more thoroughly as I mature. Maybe I feel like I've lost the need to desperately grasp at life. Even the senseless pain that comes with this existence seems to belong somehow. I don't expect to understand.
Expectations cause problems. Observation is not necessarily inaction, but certainly prevents a lot of unnecessary reactivity.