Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Tears run faster than my feet

This is about as much action as my running shoes have seen recently, though I hope to take them on an outing today.  I love my new running shoes and I am sorry to neglect them.

My father passed away on October 12.  He was 90, living in a nursing home, and in many ways his death was not a surprise. Grief has been the surprising part.  Somewhere in my subconscious I must have been holding onto the magical thought that so long as my father was alive, he might someday "get better" and return to being the father I had known and loved for so many years.  (If you've not read The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion, I highly recommend it. I need to go re-read it.)

In the days right after his death, the only time the tears would come was when I was out running.  That was both a relief and a challenge for me, so my runs were shorter, and sometimes the sobbing would require I stop to catch my breath.  That was excuse number 1 for avoiding running. Then there was all the busy-ness that comes with preparing for and carrying out all the ceremony of saying goodbye. Excuse number two. Finally, there were a couple of days of unbearable anger at the world.  Excuse number three, and the feeblest of them all.

And now I feel ready, I hope, to start putting one running foot in front of the other, and restart my training.  Wish me luck.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013



47 Days until the Great Ethiopian Run
47 Donations collected
Exceeding my goal:  $5,125 collected!!!

Monday, October 7, 2013


I've been reading some blog posts by Joel Peterson, CEO of JetBlue.  The topic was work life balance. Since adding a running regimen into my already overbooked life this, topic was of interest to me.  It seems that the only way I can make time to run is to beg out of other activities.  In order for me to run this morning, I begged out of an early morning coffee with a dear friend. I knew once I got to the office I would not get out of the office for a midday run.  And I had to run today because my normal late afternoon run tomorrow is being superseded by a BSO concert with another dear friend.  Forget work life balance; I have something more like a sliding tile puzzle.  Move one piece and suddenly you have to move many more...

Back to the point.  Peterson's post was capturing some of his advice to recent business school alums. He advised them to think of life as a marathon not a sprint.  How about thinking of life as a 10K crawl at 7,500 feet?

And as I sit here with my aching muscles, missing the coffee that could have been, I read another line in his blog that seemed to snap me out of it.  He wrote, "It's a never-say-die resilience that allows people to move forward through life's inevitable setbacks".  I'd like to think I have some of that resilience. Maybe that is what will keep this old aching body training.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Recipe for a "Crazy Lady"

The most recent contributor to my fundraising effort, referred to me as a "crazy lady".  While I might want to take offense, it is a bit hard to argue with his assessment.  So instead, I thought I'd share my secret recipe.

1 psycho-emotional itch that needed scratching.  Best described as a need to do good in the world
54 years of life experience
1 accommodating employer
1 family willing to muddle through a week without me
1 pair of new ASICS running shoes to keep me moving
1 decision to spend Thanksgiving in NYC recovering from 18 hours returning flight time
1 friend to act as family chauffeur in my absence
1 neighbor onboard with board games to keep the 17 year old occupied
1 nanny taking on extra childcare hours
1 website that made it all too easy to sign up
1 website tool that made it all too easy to set up a fundraising page
1 little girl whose joyful spirit reminds me daily why I'm the happiest crazy person on earth

1. Click "sign up" button on Self Help Africa's website.
2. Then try not to panic.
2. Create quick fundraising page using crowdrise.com
3. Go through contacts to find people who might think you're crazy, but not too crazy to support.
4. Start running.  Moan and groan.  Run some more.
5. Remember to capture thoughts and experiences along the way so that you can tell the story.

Voila - one "crazy lady".