“Check your road and the nature of your battle. The world you desired can be won, it exists, it is real, it is possible, it’s yours.” – Ayn Rand
Beattie writes about communication today. Speak clearly, directly. If you want something, ask. Be respectful and be respected.
Today, I had a different sort of communication. It wasn’t a conversation between me and another person; rather, it was a conversation, clear and directed from within. It began with one goal: an 11-mile run.
The last time I ran 11 miles, it was in the middle of winter. My running group couldn’t run on our regular path, so we headed to the lake path – all the while battling unplowed streets, ice, and cold weather. I don’t remember how long it took us, but I do remember that it was a seemingly FOR-EV-ER run. By the time I got to 10 miles, I was beyond done.
I am noticing that I’m getting a bit faster, as much as I try to deny it. It’s very easy to look at something and say, “I cannot do that. I wish I could.” And you know what? It prevents you from trying. You’ve lost something special before you’ve begun. I am not the most outgoing person in the world; in truth, I’m very lazy. But I’ve said from the very beginning of this running adventure that if my legs can go, then so should I.
Despite my intentions to be slow today, to take it easy, my legs had other plans. I began the run with the other ladies in my group, but I only got about a mile in before my legs were telling me, loud and clear, that I had to go faster. It was actually hurting me to stay even, to stay slow. And so I listened to my body, and pulled ahead.
I’m familiar with the terrain we ran today, but we’d never run as far before. Upon realizing this, I started to panic ever so slightly. I mean, it seemed simple enough. Follow the road, and turn around at the designated turning point. But I was faced with the remaining 10 miles.
And there it was. My unspoken fear. But it’s the one that’s been there for a while. Quite simply, how would I be able to do this by myself? In a few short weeks, I’ll start training for the marathon. I haven’t been able to fathom how I would be able to run upwards of 20 miles on my own. It didn’t seem possible.
And yet, I continued to listen to myself. I passed every milestone, looking back for my group at each until it was firmly decided that, yep, I was on my own. With that, I turned my music up a little louder, focused on my breath, and did what I showed up to do.
I didn’t have a Rocky victory moment. It was still difficult and there were intervals where all I did was pray for the two minutes to show up so that I could walk. I also noticed that my mind wandered to the strangest of places. Solitude can be relaxing and it can also be very lonely. I experienced both sides today.
I’m really proud of what I did. I’m really proud of the fears I faced. And I’m really excited to keep going.
It’s a conversation I intend on having more often.