Three Days Past an Update and a Quarter Past Your Life
Normally on Saturdays or Sundays, I like do to the Old Project:42 update and re-cap basically what I intended to do vs. what I did do. You know what they say about intentions right? Something about a road, and Hell… how does it go again?
It wasn’t a bad week, not at all. But it definitely didn’t end up the way I’d intended. Going to the Dietician really kind of threw me off a bit and I ate differently than I thought I would have. Going to Weight Watchers gave me a real boost. I did the main things that I thought I would do and the things that I’m getting used to doing, the things that actually feel good whilst doing them.
I went to the gym Monday as I was already there for the dietitian. Wednesday I ran. Thursday I tried to Vlog, Friday I intended to run with the hubs but he tripped down the stairs and hurt his foot so I took that as an excuse not to. Besides I was bloody tired and we had a dinner party on Saturday to prepare for.
I wanted to be prepared for this current week by planning ahead and making some goals and you know what? I’m totally ok that I haven’t done that yet. I’m somewhere in a place of “I am totally OK” and “You have to keep going”. The “I am totally OK” place feels really good, like, amazing. And I don’t know if it’s hormones or what, but a couple of times I have nearly burst out into tears I’ve felt so good and amazed.
Like just two days ago, I went for a run. I missed Friday and Saturday (and drank and ate a lot Sat. night) so I wanted to go for a good run. I thought to myself: “I wonder if I can do two hours and how far would that take me?” So I finally geared up, after taking care of hubs for a few hours (he’s officially ill; could be stress and/or travel related), and set out on this challenge I placed upon myself.
Wait. I just said, “This challenge I placed upon myself”. Already I notice this is a huge change in my attitude. This is not the same Pinky from a few years ago. This is not the girl who purposely avoided pushing herself further. Sure maybe 10 years ago, but with the big black depression and consequent weight gain (hello Mr. Bottle O’Wine, I shall have you for dinner) after that, I never ever thought I would be in this good place, not like this.
So I set out for two hours. Two freaking hours. And I ran. And ran. And ran. I ran for one hour and forty minutes without stopping. Then I walked briskly for five minutes and then ran the last ten (I always start with a five minute warm-up). When the Nike Plus Lady told me I completed my two hours I stopped my workout and looked at my results. 17.5 Kilometers. 17.5 Kilometers. I burst out into tears. Why? Because I never thought, EVER in my life that I could do something like this, almost with ease. That, I, the girl who hated running from as far back as I can remember, purposely ran 17.5 KM. I cried too because I absolutely had to bid adieu to the voice that says I “can’t” do something. Guess what? I CAN DO ANYTHING. I can do anything I set my sights on. This wasn’t just a physical accomplishment; it was an emotional and mental one as well. No one can ever tell me or even think that I CAN’T do something, because I can. One year ago I was on C25K Week Four. I wasn’t even running 10 minutes straight yet. I remember being in Berlin during week 5 or 6, feeling like I couldn’t do it. I was struggling with my breathing. Didn’t know the terrain. I cried in the Tiergarten because I felt like a failure. Like I would NEVER be able to do it. I’m thinking I should do the Berlin marathon at this point!!
The very next day I set out on my bike to ride to Nijmegen, a city 20KM away. I packed my sandwiches and my water (but forgot my sunscreen like an idiot) and took off. It was gorgeous out and I’d wanted to do this for years. I ended up getting lost a few times, but I was cycling through the countryside and tiny villages that I’d never been to and it was fine, great even! By the time I finally arrived it was 35KM later. I sat out on a terrace and had an ice cold pint of beer. I sat there, in the sun, thinking about what I just did and once again I wanted to cry from sheer happiness and feeling of accomplishment. Later, I thought it would be better to take the train home so I wouldn’t be too late or too tired. The universe had other plans for me because she knows I am more than able to ride my bike back to Arnhem! I arrived at the train station only to find out there were no trains, only buses (work on the tracks). So when I left I thought “OK, you can go the direct route now, it’s 20KM, piece of cake!” Within one hour I was home again. Tired, yes. Sore, yes. Hungry, no doubt. But I did it! An actual total of nearly 64KM. Hubs, though sick, made a huge plate of pasta and homemade sauce for me that was ready when I arrived home.
But let me talk about this “you have to keep going” place. There’s these little niggling feelings that come, usually every day still, that want me to go back where I was. Eating junk. Being lazy, not wanting to do this anymore. I just want to wake up sometimes and have this fat suit gone and be able to eat, drink and be merry without the consequences, then things happen that push me back into “You have to keep going”. I got one of those things last week too.
In the past 5 years four people I have known, one very close, two good friends and colleagues and one old boyfriend from the past have died. Three have just dropped dead. One unfortunately had cancer. All of them were close to my age (one even younger). I am forty-one years old. I know people die and people get sick and people give up and fall into drinking and drugs but this reality is still absolutely mind-blowing when it happens so close. My friend Michael, who died last year absolutely catapulted me into getting healthy. He was just a wee bit younger than me. That could have happened to me. I have to keep going. There is NO CHOICE now to go back. None. I can drop dead like Michael or Rob (who recently died of a heart attack, at the age of 44) or I can keep going. Wow, that’s a no-brainer choice, right?
So. When you think that you are sick of this. That you “can’t” or you just don’t want to or it’s too hard or, or, or… any other thing you can think of to try to stop yourself, just remember, it’s a quarter past your life – don’t let the time waste away any longer. Do this for yourself, but also do it for the people who love you. I am still grieving for Michael and I don’t know that I’ll ever get over it. Don’t do that to the people who love you. But really? When you do this for you, you will find out how capable you are. How strong. How determined. How AMAZING you are. Feel amazing! Feel accomplished! Cry some tears of joy at just how great your health, your body and your life can be. I know I’m not holding back any longer. I’m totally OK! I am definitely going to keep going!
Hey another great blog, well done of the run and the cycle trip, shame we don’t live closer I really need a cycle buddie!!!
Keep up the good work!
Thanks Lisa! Me too, but you know *if* the trains are actually working it wouldn’t be too difficult to bring my bike out to D.H.! I love cycling so much -it’s definitely something I would miss if I no longer lived here!
Perhaps we could arrange a cycling trip, perhaps we could meet half way and do a little trip :O) Have a look at your diary and we can discuss if you are interested?
ooh yes definitely! I’ll have a look!!
OMG!!! I can’t wait to finally get to the “I’m OK place.” Right now, I’m in the “I-feel-like-a-failure-because-I-can’t-get-my-butt-off-the-couch place.” If only it were easy to start and keep going.
I applaud your two hour run and cycling trip.
Hey Veronica! You aren’t even a failure if you can’t get off the couch. But I can tell you, you CAN get off the couch. All you have to do is make that decision. A little bit at a time builds up. Trust me, when I started C25K I really never thought I’d get past week one. Just decide one day at a time, you don’t even have to think long term, today is enough :)
You CAN definitely do and accomplish anything you put your mind to. It really is true. Yeah, there will be detours along the way, but we can always learn and embrace those detours since good things usually come from the bad.
When I ran for 10 miles straight two weeks ago, I almost cried when I finished. Really close to. Tomorrow, I’m going to get 13 miles in. And then, I’m going to run my first half marathon.
We can do this. One step at a time. One day at a time :)
Thanks Jess. We definitely CAN do this. Detours or no detours :)
I think this is my favorite post of yours. This is just so powerful and so moving. You’ve made me cry. You’ve made me feel triumphant for you. You’ve made me want to conquer the world.
wow, thank you so much. I’m so glad this meant as much to me as it did to you!! there is no reason why we shouldn’t try to conquer the world!!!
Wow! You are awesome girl!!
Congrats on all that running and an amazing bike ride! You rock!!
Thanks Brooke! I will definitely keep rocking the running and the other exercise!!
What a great post!!! First, what a huge thing, running for 2 hours, and the biking the next day? So super! I know it must mean to world to you now. That’s why I cry every time I read a Runner’s World magazine! Reading what runners are doing, what you’re doing, what you’re capable of, and how you’ve changed, is a testament to what everybody is capable of. It truly is hard to “get” how happy you become once you start shedding the bulk of the fat suit. Good for you, Renee!
thank you so much Katie! I know there is so much more in store, so many more things I’m going to accomplish. With support like you guys I definitely can not fail!!
Wow, what a powerful post, thank you for sharing! Running 2 hours is an amazing thought – I know I’ll get there someday! Thank you for the reminder that WE CAN and that it’s 100% worth it and more!
I’m so glad I could share this with you! You will most definitely get there as well!
What a great inspiring blog. I’m so impressed with your running and then biking the next day.
I celebrate life! I always have but after my Dad died even more. It can be over before you know it and the clue is that you’ve enjoyed most of it. And being healthy makes life more fun.
That’s what this is all about right? Celebrating LIFE. This is the life that we get and we should definitely do everything we can to make it the BEST life possible!
Thank you SO MUCH for this post. It’s posts like this that keep me going because I really want to get to where you are. Right now I can run about an hour but it’s run 9 minutes, walk 1. (Doing Ease Into 10K).
This post is inspirational and I added you to my new blogroll! :)
Thanks and I’ll definitely add you back! You are doing a great job with running too! Nothing wrong with walk/running!