Thursday, December 31, 2009

8, 9, 11 and done

Doesn't everyone state at year end "where did the time go?" ?? Regardless if it was a year full of the best of times, the worst of times, painful times, joyous times, etc. it does indeed seem that time escapes us inexplicably. At times in this past year I felt as if time was standing still, I was hurt I was not feeling like myself, I was biding my time, wanting to skip forward and magically be "me" again. And during that time, unbeknownst to me at the time, I grew more into "me" than I ever thought possible. In the cycle of physical therapy which started late last year and continued into January I rediscovered yoga. I decided to make my practice a regular thing, to grow it, to explore a new [to me] studio and see if that might not be part of the solution to getting myself healthy and running again without pain.

And it was, indeed, a prominent slice of the solution. And it was so much more than that, so much so that it's very difficult to put it all into words. Yoga strengthened me physically and mentally. To deal with life's regular hurdles, long hours at the office, the rediscovery of my running, my relationships with family, friends, co-workers and complete strangers. My mind exploded in a reawakening of the interpersonal skills that we use every single day. I loved each day more than the last, I saw things differently ...more thoroughly, more intensely and with a deeper sense of being. Perhaps yoga was just the impetus and everything that followed a reaction? Whatever the case I feel truly blessed that this series of events occurred in my life. This year has been about a deeper understanding in who I am and want to be as a human, how I want to live my life, what makes me & my loved ones happy and how I'd like to engage in the world as "me". It was the perfect setup for where I am now, back into my running, very much enjoying a [oftentimes] stressful job, growing and happy in my relationships and wanting to spread this phenomenon with everyone around me!

I have zero doubt that 2010 will be a good one. Good b/c I intend to start the year just as I'd like to, on my terms and with a positive attitude. Good b/c, hot damn!, I'm back to running consistent 50+ MPW and will be moving deeper into my training for Illinois. Good b/c this gift of yoga has only one way to grow, up. So then my friends, I close 2009 out with 8, 9, and 11 mile runs :-) Eager to see where the next 365 days takes me and confident that it will be based upon the last 365.

Happy New Year!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

A big batch of easy with a sprinkling of RP

Phase 1 continues on and will do so until January 31st, at which point I will have hit my max. mileage for this round of training for at least 3 weeks in a row. Wheeeee! In phase 2 I'll back off the mileage slightly and add in more quality before bringing back the miles with the quality for the finale that will be phases 3 & 4. As mentioned before, all of my running these days is at an easy pace with a couple sets of strides per week as really the only other component. Oh and the occasional race sprinkled in here and there. The races aren't all out efforts but rather a way to gauge which paces I should be training at, once quality reemerges in my running. They're also a great way to mix things up and give me a taste of another pace, RP.

I'm really having a blast so far and totally enjoying running for exactly what it means to me, at it's very roots.

Simple. Cleansing. Meaningful.

And the balance struck between my running and my yoga practice seems to have found the most perfect of mid-lines. I feel new streams of life shooting through my limbs in each discipline undoubtedly provided by the other. It's a beautiful thing and I'm loving every second of it. Add to that some recent running excursions with some of my most favorite people and folks, we're talking full package here! I look forward to opening up those experiences even more while back at home in St. Louis over the holidays.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

NYC in December

A few of my most favorite things appear near the end of November & beginning of December, each year around the city. This one in particular is quite exciting as it not only enhances the appearance of our sidewalks but it also enhances the smell. Go to bed on Thanksgiving night and awake the next morning to Miniature Christmas Tree lots sprinkled throughout the city. Some are parked next to bodegas, others take the place of smaller Greenmarkets and still others are magical little dynasties all on their own.

This one is just a block away from our apt., is less than half a block "big", smells deliciously of a variety of pines and is manned by some very friendly Canadians who live in their van from Thanksgiving until the day before Christmas. I especially enjoy that I get to walk through it several times a day, to and from work, to and from the grocery store, to and from the park.

The extra magical ingredient appears when our first dusting of snow comes down. Ahhh, you really can live in the city and feel like you're in the country ....well, sort of.