On the Train Again

The whole purpose of beginning this blog was to document my marathon training while living this crazy place called Mommyland.

It’s with relief that I am now coming full circle as training for race number two officially begins on September 24th.

In the space between the last marathon and now I have worked and re-worked the plan making educated and experience based substantive decisions, which I will do my best to follow.

1. I will again be following Hal Higdon’s Novice 2 schedule, but instead of three-day mid-week runs, I will be combining the mileage to run only two. This will mean that those mid-week runs will be longer, but I’ll have more days in between to rest and recover. I am hoping that exhaustion from too many successive runs in a row (which was an issue last time) will be resolved with this plan. I will also use the Galloway system of strategized walking, as I do believe it works and will help me go farther with more control.

2. I’ve agreed to help out my most favorite yoga instructor on Saturday mornings by checking in her students in return for a free pass to her phenomenal class. Last marathoning go around I was so consumed by the run that I neglected my yoga, neglected a huge piece of what grounds me to my life. Agreeing to be at the studio every Saturday will ensure that my yoga practice is built into the schedule. It will also give me an opportunity to re-build the dusty resume and re-establish the fact that I am consistent and committed and pretty competent at tasks in which I’m given.

3. Long runs, then, will have to happen on Sundays or Mondays (last year I ran long on Saturdays). The most gratifying runs are the long ones, for me. I am looking forward to those hours and hours on the road, out there on my own two feet, floating alone inside my own busy brain.

4. I’ve been off of sugar for twelve whole days, off of Diet Coke a week longer, and I’ve been much more careful about the overall contents of things like cereal and yogurt and so-called healthy snack bars and drink supplements. An ongoing process, I am sure there will be much more written about my emotional connectedness to food as it’s the one part that I still haven’t fully figured out. I should mention another change, too. I will NOT be getting on the scale anytime in the near future. More about that to come.

And so I am ready to go.

The last factor (of which I have no control) is with mother nature.

Yes there will be days in the next months that I will have no choice but run in the drizzle and/or rain and/or the early morning freezing cold. I can handle all that. It’s part of the challenge.

This heat, though, needs to go.

September marks a new beginning for me in so many ways and the muggy humid air has gotten very very old.

What races are you running? What will your training plan look like?

XOM

ING Miami Marathon and Half Marathon. Joanna, from Poppy’s Style and I are running it! Anyone else want to come to the party?

Connections

I went to sleep in my own bed last night. Brian was recovering from the girls’ stomach bug that may or may not have been the reason for my three cramps during Saturday’s fifteen miler. I, and my iron stomach, did not seem to fall victim to this virus, but spent that past four days on laundry duty. Throw up goes everywhere when it happens in the middle of the night. Even the pots, put out to make less laundry for me, were missed. My poor, sick family. I like laundry, so I am not complaining, except that I hate to see the ones I love in such a state.

Last night, Brian and I tried to connect over an evening in bed with AT&T Direct. I talked him into watching Eat, Pray, Love by telling him it was a really good book. This was actually a little lie. The truth is that I tried to read it three times and could never get past the first 30 or 40 pages.

After a half hour of the movie, Brian said it should have been called “Eat, Pray, Boring.” It was, and I fessed up about my lie.

I was sleepy, so it didn’t bother me that he wanted to watch “the game.” I rolled over and started to doze, but felt my husband scratch my head with the tips of his five fingers, which made my hair gather under his hand. It was sweet and he was being as loving as could be mustered when recovering from a sick stomach.

My plans for running this week are all messed up. The pre-school teachers have workdays and Brian and Peach are flying in different directions on the map. My usual planned three weekday runs are going to have to be pared down to two. Instead of running, 5, 8, 5, I will run 7 and then 10. My long run of 17 will have to wait until Sunday, after three days off. It will be interesting to see how that goes.

Yesterday I googled Suzanne Collins, the author of The Hunger Games. I found it so interesting that this book, which has garnered widespread attention and appeal, was written for the young adult sect. It’s proof that good writing crosses barriers; barriers that too often separate us.

A smile crossed my face when I read that she also wrote for one of the girls and my most favorite cartoons, Little Bear. We love Little Bear for his sweet yet not whiny (like Franklin) personality and his dreamy imagination. A lot of Little Bear centers on the delights of a child’s world, like birthday parties and relationships with parents and friends in the form of bears (and a hen and an owl and a duck and a cat). The one human, named Emily, is a good friend to Little Bear and in a perfect world (with talking bears and hens) would be the kind of friend we all have. Helpful, caring, true, and always ready to participate in the adventure.

Once my interest was really peaked, I watched an interview on You Tube where Ms. Collins answered questions to the readers of her trilogy.

The best part of the interview was regarding good writing and the classic books that she’s read over and over again. After listing her favorites, which happened to be some of mine  (like Lord of the Flies and 1984), she said that reading books is important because of the connection that is made between the reader and the mind of the author. It’s a real relationship, different than the ones we have with other forms of entertainment; like the one sided relationships we have with apps and televisions and video games. Aren’t we all looking for connections?

And with that, and on this National holiday celebrating Martin Luther King, Jr. and his commitment to fairness and equality for all, I am reminded of the important connections between all people.

I myself write (maybe selfishly) to build connections with others, whether they live next door or farther than the farthest points of the Earth; whether we appear to be just alike or have commonalities only discovered through serious soul sharing.

We are, after all, the same only different.