Tuesday, July 26, 2011

inspiration - pt. I

The Yankees are on and it's actually being broadcast on a station that I get with my 'Poor Girl's Cable Package'. Options also include: Public Access, HSN, C-SPAN and TV Guide Channel. Hell of a selection, isn't it?  Anyhow, I'm a little distracted because I have to look up at my 10" TV every time my boyfriend's at bat. I couldn't wait until tomorrow night to share my news, so as scattered as this post may be, here goes...

I pulled the trigger. Not on a gun because I don't like guns.  I guess what I mean is that in a moment of confusion, anxiety and immense motivation to reach a goal I had set to achieve this year, I registered today for the L.A. Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon, on October 30, 2011.

This is a big, f*ckin' deal, folks! Why? Because I can't run. I shuffle, I skip, I scoot, and when I'm frustrated, I stomp. Not to mention that I'm out $100 if I break a leg, or need a kidney, or have PMS.

[They're winning. Top of the 7th, 3-0. Don't ask who they're playing because it doesn't really matter.]

As disappointed as I have been with my running performance lately, I was determined to push forward. The frustrations started to increase about 2 months ago, after I completed my first 10K race. I did great at that race, but ever since then, I seemed to be getting slower, and sloooower. I struggled with as little as a 3-mile run and couldn't seem to get anything to feel right. My energy was down, my body felt  heavy and tight, and I my breathing became increasingly difficult. My peers in the running community continued to make progress, increasing their distance, and here I was moving backwards. Everything I was doing, I was doing wrong. Depressing. I began to read more in search of tips and suggestions or even answers that could serve as a diagnosis of sorts to make me feel better about my crappy performance. I got nothing.

[Rain delay, bottom of the 7th.]

I decided to reach out and touch someone for help, because I was a little pissed, to be honest. I follow a local blog here, called How 2 Run Fast and emailed the blogger, Mike. I asked if he might know of a local running coach and he was kind enough to put a post about my inquiry on another local blog he writes for, The Times Union Runners Blog. Readers provided some suggestions and comments, but the best reply came from a woman that would be my inspiration to kick this struggle into full gear and move forward. Her name is Mary Ibbetson.

[Top of the 8th, Yankees still winning. Rain still falling.]

Mary reached out and offered to help me. Poor woman. After a few email exchanges, we chatted on the phone and by the end of the conversation, I already started feeling motivated to make some changes. What an amazing woman! (Please take a moment and get to know Mary.) With her inspiration, coaching and torture, I know that I can reach my goal now. As she says, the work is 90% mental. Why then does it feel like it's 90% hell? With the help of her presence in my life, for however long or short it may be, I made a decision to register for my first half marathon. Thank you, Mary.

[Now it's really pouring, still 3-0 and the fans are slowly trickling out.]

I have done a heck of a lot of pokin' around the internet to find the perfect race for my first half marathon. I have reviewed countless options - everything from locations, to themes, to fundraising partners, dates and registration rules. I was shocked as to how many are out there, but also excited that I would even have that many options.

[Home run, Mark Teixeira! Now the Yankees lead 4-1, bottom of the 8th.]

It's strongly suggested that when you create a running goal such as the one I have, you need to make the commitment and register for that big race, whether it's your first 5K, or your 6th marathon. I needed to do that, and I needed to do it now. It will hold me accountable and I'm the type that once I set my mind to something, I will do everything in my power to follow-thru because the one person I never want to disappoint, is me.

[Game over and the Yankees win!]

I have 13 weeks to train for this. For some reason, the training program I have to follow does not include:  Sal's mojitos at Hattie's, the yummy Death by Chocolate ice cream from Stewart's, Jimbos at Bomber's, Chocolate Peanut Butter Pie at The Lighthouse, and my Friday night bag 'o pork rinds in bed. It should. Guess I'll need to make some minor modifications.

My brother and I enjoying what I now know was my last mojito for the summer. Boo hoo.

So, I've started my training, I'm excited and proud of my decision to register.  More importantly, I know I can do this.

Oh, and there's one more reason why I selected this half marathon in Los Angeles...

Until next time... I'm counting the days until the Runyon 5K at Yankee Stadium!