Friday, November 25, 2011

A Different Day of Thanks

Today is a weird day for me. Every year, especially after tough things happen throughout the year, on the day after Thanksgiving, I remember an anniversary that was my "big life moment".

13 years ago, in the evening on the day after Thanksgiving, I was in a horrible car accident that I literally should not have walked away from. The specifics I will spare you, but I left my car with only a few scratches on my left arm, leg, and foot. The EMTs told me at best, I should be paralyzed from the waist down. The towing company told me there's no way I should have walked away from the accident.

Everyday when I run, play with my kids, hug my husband, you name it, I am thankful for the miracle of life I was given that day. Yet, I am more thankful for the after effects of that accident than surviving the accident itself.

I know if that accident had not happened, my life would be entirely different right now. Not bad, per se, but completely different. I most likely would not have my husband, my boys, my best friends, my in-laws, none of the people I hold so close to my heart. I know I probably would not have changed my major in college, and my career path would have been totally the opposite. Most of all, I would not know my purpose in life like I do now. Granted, it’s been a long, hard road finding my purpose, but during that journey, I realized I learned everything along the way has been leading up to now to bring me clarity and a sense of feeling fulfilled. Most of my runs over the last three years have helped me figure this out.

My purpose:

Be the best mother and wife I know how to be.
Help people in ways that are in accord with my own talents.
Spread and show love to every person possible.

This year, I give thanks on a different day of the weekend to kickoff the holiday season. I give thanks for the gift of my legs and feet to continue on with my training. I give thanks for every person I know. I give thanks for the three people I would do and give absolutely anything for. I give thanks for finding my way, even a little delayed, to make sense of this crazy world.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Austin Komen for the Cure 5K

This past weekend, P and I ventured down to Austin, Texas. A combined adventure of his gig at the Punk Rock Food Drive and my 5k, Komen for the Cure. This trip was also a treat because we were also kid-free ( a rarity for us)!

Friday night, Saturday, and Saturday night was a combination of going out, seeing Austin, seeing friends, going out some more and P's show. Needless to say, there was very little sleep and lots of tacos. Surprisingly, even with meeting a virtual friend from my Running Moms group, I only drank two, yes, that's dos, beers the entire weekend. Yet, I wander off subject.

Sunday morning came way too early. The night before I got in about 12:30 a.m. and finally to sleep around 1 a.m. Getting to sleep that late is usually the second time I've fallen asleep in a night, not the first. The 6 a.m. alarm stopped my heart, I believe. I seriously cannot remember the last time I jumped out of bed that fast. I had 45 minutes to wake up, get dressed, and drive to the race, park and find the start line. That I even did pretty quickly (thank you, pre-organization)!

Thankfully, I a. know how to navigate maps and areas I don't know very well and b.) knew a little bit of the layout of Austin. It's pretty similar to Denton, in my opinion. Drive time andparking took no time at all. Thanks to my Running Mom friend, Bethany, I had my packet early so after parking all I had to do was go straight to the start line.

And then the nerves hit. This was the first race I've ever done completely alone. No one to run with, no one to see me at the finish line. I suddenly felt silly in my tutu, even though my friend Nycole at Lil' Darlin' Designs did a kick ass job making me a custom tutu. I choked up. I almost walked back to the car. I suppose fortunately for me, the starting announcements were going on and I was stuck in the middle of the crowd of timed runners. The gun goes off! Crap...I start running at a diagonal to get to the side to let all the speedsters get by. I don't remember much other than hills, the 11:30 mm time at the Mile 1 marker, turning on 6th Street, and then rounding the Capitol building towards the end.

I do remember walking a couple of more times than I wanted and reminding myself that I am pretty friggin' tired. I do remember turning the corner to the finish line and crossing my fingers that my posse showed up. (Nope.) I remember finishing and thinking, "Oh my goodness, I have to pee, " and "I need coffee". That's me post coffee and post pee.

My first race in 6.5 months ended up being fairly "normal" and overwhelming at the same time. Oh, and this lady PR'd on her 5K time at a 39:05...not bad for 5 hours of sleep and late night fuel of 1/2 of a trailer taco. The cool thing about the Komen is the cause. I dedicated this race to my friend Marissa's mom, Nancy, who completed her treatment in October.

No matter how much I wanted to quit running and how much I wanted to cry at the last 0.14 miles, I know whatever I was going through was nothing compared to what Nancy and millions of other women have gone through or are going through. They are the true heroes of the Komen.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

New Kicks and a Tutu

I haven't raced officially since April at the Running Moms Rock 5K. Maybe that's why I'm getting so excited over an invite from a fellow running mom to do the Komen while I'm in Austin this weekend. Turns out that do to a foot injury she can't run it, but I'm still getting my race on!

Today I received my custom tutu from Lil Darlin' Designs. Nycole normally does tutus for little girls, but when I asked if she could do a custom one for me, she was more than happy. Therefore, in true Komen spirit, I got a hot pink combined my classic black racing color.

I can't wait to run in this!

I also finally purchased new kicks today! My feet were cursing me for way too long. I do know it's not always best to get new shoes a few days before a race, but I still have 2 runs on tap this week before race day. My feet are already thanking me just from when I tried them on. The big deal about the new kicks...I made a brand switch. I love my New Balance shoes, always have, but I jumped at the deal I saw on Saucony Grid Cohesions. They are rarely on sale when I have to trek into Sports Authority. I made the color switch from my standard blue to pink as well.

I can't wait to get pics of the whole racing outfit pieced together! Man, I love new running gear.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Ever Loving Battle with Alarms

We love to hate them...not our training runs (well, maybe), but I mean, our damn alarms. Two scenarios always happen:

  1. They don't go off and you really need to get up early/on time/anything before 10 minutes before you absolutely have to get up
  2. They go off and you begin the 5-10 minute dance of hitting snooze and sleeping in and you end up oversleeping anyway.
I've been having an intense love/hate relationship with my alarms the past couple of weeks. I get mad when my phone alarm doesn't go off and I sleep until P gently wakes me up with bright closet lights, noises from the kitchen and a gentle "B******* (I will not disclose his pet name for me), you need to wake up." All I hear is "Get your lazy a$$ out of bed, and it's too late for a run."

I'm two weeks into my Cowtown training, and I've ran, oh, like 4 miles out of the 25 I should have logged already. Tonight, I'm holding nothing back. A regular, loud, annoying alarm combined with the Jillian-Michaels-30-Day-Shred-music-please-don't-yell-at-me-anymore type alarm.

Desperate times call for desperate measures, right? Yes, that's why I also enlisted some of my virtual running mama friends to not only text me at 5:30 a.m. to make sure I am running or have already ran, but also check in with me later in the day. Accountability, that's the desperate measure.

P will be hating my 5 a.m. alarms right along with least he gets to doze off for another half hour, and not be out on a 5-o'clock run in the predicted 39° temperature for tomorrow morning. Cool (almost cold) and windy = [bad.ass], right?