over the past week i’ve completely lost my focus, my mantra, my drishti. i’m not my better self for it. have courage, rise above the fears that are attempting to take hold of you again. choose peace, aubrey. why is it so much harder to trust what you know, what you can see plainly, than it is to be afraid of maybes with no hard evidence?
i ran tonight for the first time since the half. i didn’t intend to take two weeks off, but that’s kind of the point. running and me, we nearly broke up and are getting back together rather slowly and shyly. but i have full confidence this is how we’ll fall in love again.
half mile run.
3 rounds of:
35 sec plank.
i’m ramping up these numbers daily, and tomorrow intend to add on at least a second half mile to the end, maybe a full mile. i’ve been sick with chest/head stuff which means my lungs struggled with even just half a mile tonight.
but that half mile felt free. it felt wonderful. no watch. no phone. no music. just me, the sunset and the road. no pressure. which is exactly what i need right now, as i continue to work everything out that 2014 has brought me. march is teaching me that its a longer, slower journey than i originally understood it to be. i’m working in finding the good in that and make peace with it. and myself.
in other news:
i graduate exactly two months from yesterday; max exactly two months from this coming monday. what.
i haven’t been sleeping well this week. which in turn messes up my schedule (oversleeping). which in turn messes up my eating (both when and what). which in turn messes up my exercise. which then messes up my emotions.
it hasn’t been the best week, in short.
but in two (!!!) days i get to go home for a whole 10 day break. i get to see maxwell for the first time in three (three) weeks (so over LDRs). i get to snuggle my kitty, repaint my room, eat dinner with my family, run in my neighborhood, bake, readreadread, go on a date or two with the best boy, drink tea from my favorite mug, and not go to school.
until then, i’ll be “studying” (lol what is studying i only have 6 more weeks of college left) for my two exams tomorrow, watching house of cards (season one, i’m a late bloomer) and attempting not to eat all the easter candy i bought for my family at dylan’s in new york.
oh, and about house of cards. its weird. i don’t feel hooked or like i love it, but…i can’t. stop. watching. so…maybe i actually do love it?
a list of beautiful things for this sunday morning:
the rain hitting my window. an envelope with my name on it and the return address of a dear friend. backbends first thing in the morning. being trusted. hearing him say he misses me. pancakes with peanut butter and syrup, because hey, i deserve it. silence when you’re the only one awake in a house of 40 girls. smiles. catching up with friends. birthdays. & ellen on the oscars tonight.
its noon on a saturday, and i’m actually home (not out of town) and not at work. i honestly can’t remember the last time this happened. already today has been wonderfully productive. what a brilliant way to start off the new month, getting all the little things done that couldn’t get done in february.
speaking of, simple goals for march:
do more pushups
read read read
continue to seek the good
continue to vanquish fear
eat more plants
thursday brought extra sleep because my body needed it, homemade ice cream sandwiches, zero joint pain for the first time since sunday, the realization that i’ve been burying destructive things for too long and its time to air them out, red wine, laughter, & the return of olivia pope and associates.
thursday, you weren’t too bad. maybe we can do this again sometime.
spin class this morning kicked my butt. more accurately, it kicked my poor quads who are still recovering from a half marathon + 20+ miles walked this weekend. we did sprint intervals and i nearly cried during the last set, which was jumps. thankfully we did circuit training today so it was a set of sprint intervals + arm/ab work on the floor, repeat, repeat.
i’m pretty sure 50 minutes straight of cycle today would have literally left me in tears.
in other life news, there isn’t much news. i’m itching for graduation (because i’m so over doing schoolwork) but at the same time not quite ready to say goodbye to this part of my life journey. i miss maxwell a lot; that’s another part of wanting graduation. just that much closer to not doing the LDR thing anymore.
but i’m continuing to focus on my february drishti, which honestly i may adopt for all of 2014. seeking out the good has already done so much good for my heart. no longer allowing fear to rule over me is helping me be the best me i can be. and honesty is always the best policy. especially with yourself.
speaking of, the support and positive responses from everyone re: my decision to stop long distance running in favor of mid-distance means so very much. this little community has done so much for me over the years, and i know it will continue to be a part of my journey moving forward.
now, time for tea and madame bovary, which i am horribly behind in reading for french lit (and yes, i’m actually reading it in the original french, in case anyone is wondering (you probably aren’t)).
So. The Central Park Half.
really quiet basically silent about the race itself. And there’s several reasons for that. But firstly, here’s photographic proof that I did, in fact, finish the damn thing and live to tell the tale. We seriously could not have asked for better weather for a race in New York in February.
But this isn’t going to be a race recap. Because I don’t ever want to relive that race. For me, it was brutal, painful and unenjoyable. The smile you see this photo is not one of pride, but of sheer relief that it was over. Also because a camera was pointed at my face. Because I was basically the farthest thing from smiling for a good two hours after the race.
This race brought a very big, very important realization to my attention: I do not enjoy long distance running. Not even a little bit. And the proof is in the fact that I did not train properly for this race. The last time I ran before this race was 4 February, and it was only 3 miles. I have had a huge mental block against training for this race and simply couldn’t get myself out the door to do it. I’ve been caught up in anxiety over this race for the past month. I cried through the entire first mile because I didn’t know how in the world I was going to make it 12.1 more. I wanted to quit after 3 miles. I seriously considered quitting after 5. I didn’t; I finished, mostly out of pride because I had publicized this race too much to do otherwise (here and IRL). And when I did finally, deliriously, cross the finish line, the first words out of my mouth as my friend Caitlin (who rocked her first half and loved it which made me so happy for her) wrapped me up in a hug/foil were "never again" and then I promptly started crying (out of relief or pain I’m not really sure).
But there are beautiful things that came out of this race.
1. I finished. My time was abysmal, I walked more than I ran, but I finished. The human body is incredible.
2. I fully realized where my love for running does lie (because this is NOT an “I’m quitting running completely forever” post). I love the mid-distances, 2-5 miles, 3-4 being preferable.
3. I did not let my demons win. I did not let fear rule supreme (I almost didn’t even start the race). I sought out the good (took it one mile at a time and minimized negative self-talk after the first mile). I was honest with myself (I don’t like running long distances and I accepted that, that is okay. It does not make me lazy or unfit or unworthy or weak. Its just not for me. And that’s absolutely 100% okay).
So for now, this is the end of my ‘career’ (if you can even call it that) as a long distance runner. I’ve completed two half marathons during college, and as someone who had never run by choice in her entire life prior to three years ago, I am incredibly proud of myself. I’m also so grateful that I got the crazy half-brained idea to even run a half in the first place because I never would have started running otherwise. And I love running. I really do. But I do not enjoy it much past 5 miles. And accepting that, embracing that, has been the most freeing thing. I have never felt more relieved of stress than I do now that I am no longer pressuring myself to be a person who loves long distance running. Because running is running. I want to become a stronger runner. I want to become a faster runner. I want to become a happier runner.
I also just want to feel free-er to do other active things. I really want to start cycling; hopefully I can invest in a bike within the next year or 18 months. I’m dying to learn to rock climb. I want to invest more in yoga. I’m really enjoying strength training. And if I’m training for races I don’t even enjoy, I don’t have time to do all these other things, which makes me even less happy, even less fulfilled.
I want to be the happiest, best, fullest version of myself. And giving up 13.1 is the first major step toward that. I have never felt so confident about anything in my life. And it is the best feeling.
Yes, well, notice I specified that that day is tomorrow! Because I definitely realize that can happen haha and I plan to actively not allow that to happen. Yesterday and today are my only freebie days. Plus I couldn’t eat rich food like this everyday. Even today, while it tasted wonderful, its sitting a little too heavy for comfort in my stomach. Healthy, normal, light eating will recommence tomorrow. :)