Sunday, August 23, 2009

Don't make excuses, make history.

Welcome to my blog and thanks for reading.

2 weeks to go until the World Mountain Running Championships in Italy.
At this point, it's all about speedwork and staying lean and strong. Ran hard this morning - 400s and 800 repeats, hitting about a 5:40 pace consistently. I should probably be faster but was satisfied with the 1:18 400s that I ran, given that it was just out on the river pathways in Calgary on a Sunday morning.
Always an amazing way to start the day after a few cups of coffee and some blueberries and hempseeds. The joys of summer.
As I run I can't help but feel blessed for so many reasons. I am exactly where I want to be in my life. I am blessed to have the speed back in my legs, to have a goal to strive for, and to have the support of my friends and family behind me as I make my second attempt at competing on an international stage. Turkey in 2006 was a huge learning experience and I hope that this year gives me even more insight into what it takes to truly excel at that level.
This week, my twin girls start kindergarten, I'm packing to move, and tying up loose ends at work before I take off to Europe. My parents tell me to slow down, that I'm doing too much. But in truth, I don't want it any other way and I don't really know what I would give up. I love it all.

Upon my return from Turkey, I remember wondering what it would be like to be an athlete who trains full time, sleeps a lot, and gets regular attention to any little ache and pain. Never misses a workout. What would it be like I wondered as I ran around my community, on about 5 hours of sleep, squeezing in the last few minutes before I had to run home, jump in the shower, and jump into full mom mode. But the truth is, while my life is exhausting and chaotic almost all the time, I wouldn't have it any other way. My kids are the lights in my life. They are sweet, and caring, and brilliant and full of passion, and they hold me accountable. They think for themselves and challenge me every day and I love that they can do that and that I am open to the lessons.
I dont' want to give up the work I do because it is meaningful and fulfilling and not very many people get to say that about their jobs. I feel like I'm making a difference. Working in international development has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. And getting to help people feel better by teaching and empowering them about what foods work best in their bodies, seeing incredible results, yet another fulfilling job.
I have my friends and family around me almost all the time and never feel alone.
I have a partner who loves me and supports all of my dreams, believes in me and inspires me. He pushes me but also just holds me. Another blessing to have found my soul mate.
Someone asked me yesterday what motivated me to run and to train. I remember when I first started running it was an escape and my meditation time. I remember thinking about Terry Fox in every race I ran. How mentally tough he was. I remember thinking about children starving all over the world... and this made me push harder because every time I thought I wanted to quit or it hurt too much, I remembered that this was nothing like the pain other people had to deal with every day.
One of my close friends is working in Indonesia right now. I got to talk to her for quite a while yesterday and I could not believe the challenges she has to overcome just to go for a run. Just the other day she had a guy grab her bum while she was out running on her own! And she was told she couldn't enter a race because she wasn't a man! But she keeps running.
The fact is, everyone has challenges to deal with and it's not about how easy it is, it's about staying focused and dedicated no matter what life throws at you. Kids, school, work, illness, surgery, injuries... you just never know. But you keep going and you push through it.