Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Phiddippidi phiddipida

First of all, I must commend my husband and son for a very sweet birthday eve picnic on the floor of our dining room last night (we don’t have a table yet). They had drawn pictures of flowers and ants and butterflies and put them all around the room. AND my husband worked hard to make sure that the entire spread was bootcamp friendly (although I did get treated to a 100 calorie piece of dark chocolate . . . my FAVE). And I got some yummy bath treats too! And then more yummy bath treats from my friend Shane today, and all the sushi I want this week what with people taking me to lunches and dinners!

I started reading THE COURAGE TO START last night and I’m really enjoying it, I highly recommend it, even if running isn’t your thing, a lot of what he says could be applicable to anyone confronting a lifetime of thinking that they could simply NOT be successful in any athletic endeavor. Ha. I just said “even if running isn’t your thing” as if it were MY thing! That’s funny. A few quotes:

“We need to spend less time planning and organizing and more time doing. We need to spend less time worrying about doing things well and more time rejoicing that we are doing them at all.”

“For all of us, the miracle isn’t that we finish, the miracle is that we have the courage to start.”

The first quote really resonates with me. I learned something about “perfectionism” in grad school. More by leeching off the more in depth study my friend did as she continued further in grad school than I went. I learned a lot from the flylady. ( . I learned that my fear of not being perfect has been paralyzing. When I used to look around a cluttered room and I would imagine how it would look if Martha Stewart ran my household then I would be convinced that I was not good enough and I would just shut the door and walk away. Same thing with any sort of athletic or creative pursuit I’d try to embrace. Once my imperfections became obvious I would quit rather than deal with anything less. For me to rejoice about doing something at all when I see other folks doing it “perfectly” is kind of a mind bending concept.

I’ve made progress with my perfectionism issues over the years. I’ve learned that neatly stacking the clutter IS better than not stacking the clutter, even if it’s somewhat less than having it organized in binders and arranged on a shelf alphabetically by color coded topic. But bootcamp has brought this concept home to me in a much more visceral way. For the first time, I’m experiencing moments of satisfaction, even exhilaration, over doing something even when I’m doing it clumsily and out of breath and in slow motion. It is so primal. I feel like I’m actively repairing wounds developed during PE in elementary school, when I first realized why no one ever picked me for their team. I’m picking ME for my team dammit!

So, in honor of my birthday, and my aching shins and knees, I went to Phidippides at lunch today, with my shoes and my work out pants. Woops, forgot the jog bra! Ah well, you don’t see so many DD marathoners so maybe it was a treat for them! ;-) I was helped by a VERY young and very sweet guy (he did mention graduating from college which I find hard to believe) and my friend Shane went for moral support. It was intimidating as hell for me to go in there. It was full of people who LOOK like runners. John Bingham says you have to accept that if you are running, then you are a runner, regardless of what you look like. But the folks I saw in there looked very heavy in the sinew and muscle and very light in the jiggly bits. But I pushed through my intimidation and changed clothes and jogged back and forth through the store while my sales guy watched my feet (and, bless his heart, he really was watching my feet despite the full on acrobatics going on under my shirt). Turns out I slightly over pronate, nothing severe but enough that some correction could help me with the shin and knee pain. I tried some implants, and then I tried some proper shoes, and the shoes won out. I feel guilty buying them after spending so much on those nikes just a month ago but these felt SO different and he said that they were correcting my over pronation, and they weigh NOTHING which felt nice too. I did try on about 8 pairs (and come to think of it, he kept bring me more and more, and for each pair I had to run back and forth . . . hmmmm). I posted a picture of them, they are pretty. And now I MUST wear them out to justify the cost.

This morning we did a workout called “Altitude Adjustment”. The focus for the morning was hills, hills and more hills. We didn’t just run though, we ran, we did lunge walks up a very long hill which were slow and torturous, we did side plank walking, we did pushups with our feet UP the hill (even on that crazy hill by the pool), we did incline situps, we ran up and down a LOT of stairs and we ended with uphill sprints. I did well today, I really pushed myself. I thought I might pass out by the end and I almost grabbed my inhaler at one point but I realized I wasn’t wheezing, it was just that my lungs felt too small for all the oxygen my body was demanding. But when we did that uphill sprint I gave it my all and I actually ran with instead of behind the person next to me more than half the distance! I also kept up better on the earlier portions. Jojo complemented me on my speed at one point. I keep assuming that other people are getting slower and that’s why I’m not falling as far behind . . . but I guess that probably doesn’t make much sense. Its just that for me to think that I’m actually getting faster feels dangerously arrogant. Especially just when I’m starting to feel ok about being at the back of the pack.

PT test is Friday. I’m nervous as hell about it. I still haven’t seen the changes I want to see in my body, at least not as dramatically as I’d like to see them, and I’m so worried that I’ll be disappointed with myself. So if you happen to be conscious between 6 and 7 am on Friday morning, send me “fast” and “strong” thoughts and prayers!

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