Saturday, January 01, 2011


HAPPY NEW YEAR! I'll spare you the long-winded recap. After all, I blog so infrequently that every post I do seems like a recap! 2010 was a very good year for me. Even when things didn't go 100% the way I'd hoped, I did my best to find the bright side and be grateful for the good things. Being married to an optimistic psychologist/Reiki-person really has changed my perspective for the better!

This morning I ran 18 miles. Although it wasn't a bowl of cherries, it was a break-through. After several weeks in a row of crappy runs and self-defeating thoughts, I was able to push through and remember the joy that comes from completing a very daunting distance.

Over the past week, I've had some helpful conversations. Of course, the Huz has been great. He offers great insight into thought patterns and how we might be able to change them (again, bonus of being married to a shrink!) I also reached out to some of my running friends - both real and online - who have all gone through the same mental struggles. I have to remind myself every now and then that there is a world of resources out there, one just has to be open to ask.

I did a few things differently today. First off, I ran with my iPod. I was trying out a whole Zen approach to running the past few months, and for a while it really worked! I was able to just enjoy being outside and alone with my thoughts. Once I got passed 10 miles, however, my thoughts would begin to turn against me.

"Wow, this is hard. Let's stop and walk. You're slow. This sucks."

After a while, my body started believing all it was hearing. I decided that music would help keep my mind occupied so it would lay off my body a little bit. Good move! I loaded up my playlist with some great tunes - lots of inspirational ones - and this one even brought me to tears today:

Another thing I did was change up my route. Instead of the same roads I always take, I decided to head back into my hometown and run some roads from the past. Excellent idea!

Finally - and most effective - I enlisted a "support crew!" My Mom was only too happy to meet me a few spots along the course with water, a towel and encouraging words. Knowing that she was just 3 miles down the road really helped keep me going. Thank you, Mom.

So now I am feeling better about things. I think I can do this and do it right. Even if I don't break any records, I will finish this race, and it will be a stronger finish than my last one.

New Years resolutions? Nah, not me. Instead, I will leave you with some inspiration that I jacked from today's Dear Abby column:

JUST FOR TODAY: I will live through this day only. I will not brood about yesterday or obsess about tomorrow. I will not set far-reaching goals or try to overcome all of my problems at once. I know that I can do something for 24 hours that would overwhelm me if I had to keep it up for a lifetime.

JUST FOR TODAY: I will be happy. I will not dwell on thoughts that depress me. If my mind fills with clouds, I will chase them away and fill it with sunshine.

JUST FOR TODAY: I will accept what is. I will face reality. I will correct those things that I can correct and accept those I cannot.

JUST FOR TODAY: I will improve my mind. I will read something that requires effort, thought and concentration. I will not be a mental loafer.

JUST FOR TODAY: I will make a conscious effort to be agreeable. I will be kind and courteous to those who cross my path, and I'll not speak ill of others. I will improve my appearance, speak softly, and not interrupt when someone else is talking. Just for today, I will refrain from improving anybody but myself.

JUST FOR TODAY: I will do something positive to improve my health. If I'm a smoker, I'll quit. If I am overweight, I will eat healthfully -- if only just for today. And not only that, I will get off the couch and take a brisk walk, even if it's only around the block.

JUST FOR TODAY: I will gather the courage to do what is right and take responsibility for my own actions.