No Chariots of Fire, But There Should Have Been.

Today, a miracle happened. And before you say, “Is this another post about running?” I assure you, reader, that that’s exactly what it is. But it has a message that can be applied to things that aren’t running, kind of like how post-it notes can be used for reminders, spitballs, tiny paper airplanes or other assorted origami.

Seeing as how I haven’t really done my best thus far with training, I felt like this was the first week I could truly commit. Tuesday – a running day – went well, Wednesday I was supposed to cross-train somehow but had a meeting and couldn’t, and tonight was the group workout (we do speed drills and cross-training on Thursday nights). This morning, I had made up my mind to really do the workout tonight.

As the afternoon crept closer, all I wanted to do was take a nap. Training started at 6:30, so when I got home at 3:30, I decided I would take a quick nap around 4:15, allowing myself an hour to sleep some, get ready, and be on my way.

I drifted off immediately, waking up at 4:40, 5:00, and then – when the alarm went off – I decided I wanted to sleep more. And so, for 30 minutes, I battled with the snooze button. I really wanted to sleep and skip the workout. I thought, “Well… do I really have to go?” and, realizing this might be a repeat of Tuesday’s inner struggle, immediately got up, got ready and walked to the training.

Tonight’s workout was “ladders” in which we run hard for a number of minutes, followed by the same number of minutes, recovering by doing an easy run or walking (I preferred the latter). Because we went to a track, the coaches decided to do “ladders” by distance. The first time out, do 200m, the second and third time 400m, and the fourth and final time 200m again.

Now, I’d really like to say that I blazed through these with “Chariots of Fire” playing in the background, but no – I didn’t. I got through them as best I could, but this exercise wasn’t the thing I was most proud of tonight.

For the first time ever, I ran a continuous mile – once on the way to the track, and once on the way back. The way there was, shall we say, a happy accident. I chose not to bring my phone or any timer whatsoever, because I didn’t really know what the workout was, and usually we just go to the park down the street. This time, we went all the way to the running path we take on our Sunday long runs. When we began running, all I could think was, “Shit! I don’t have my timer with me so I don’t know when I’m supposed to start walking!”

So I never stopped to walk. I was amazed I made it there. It wasn’t the most pleasant experience ever (I kept praying for it to end), but I took a moment to bask in the glow. After the workout, we had to jog back, and I made up my mind that if I ran there, I was going to run back. I had to keep in mind, however, that I had just done a relatively hard workout, so I took it easy. Luckily, I had a few people who ran with me and that made it easier.

I was asked if I wanted to take a walk break and in between gulps of air, I said, “Nope. I want to do this. I don’t want to do this again, but I want to do this now.” And then, I did it.

I came home and read Beattie’s post for today. It’s about accepting the good feelings, instead of pushing them down when they occur. And today, I almost pushed this accomplishment down – instead of acknowledging that I did something I’ve never been able to do, I was more likely to go the direction of, “Yes, I did this, BUT…”

But you know what? No. It’s a moment I’m proud of, and I’d like to stay in it for a while. I really think this concept can apply to anyone and any number of things. Be proud of your accomplishments, even the minute ones. Even the ones that no one else will see. Own the moment, even if it’s a quiet one.

Have a good night, everyone. Be kind to yourselves.

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