Self Sabotage​ at its finest…

I was very, very close to giving up or perhaps I should say giving in to my own self-sabotage.

Let me explain.

Jay Peak took a lot of out me.

A lot.

So, I self-combusted.  Started binging. Stopped running.  Wanted to fire my coach.  You know, self-sabotage.

 

I am so glad that I have started to see my own behavioral patterns.  Because this isn’t the first time with this rodeo.

Why do you think I haven’t gotten past the marathon distance?

I was supposed to go to Moab, Utah and run a 50K this past February.  As the date got closer, I ate my heart out and fell apart both physically and mentally.  Came up with tons of excuses too.

So, I am so grateful that I was able to quickly push the pause button.  And, that my coach did his job. He talked me off of the ledge.  Some may say well he is paid to do that.  Sure, but that is what a coach does, right?

So, I got right back into training and eating right.

I worked on Saturday leading a Board retreat in Bridgeport, CT.  So, Sunday I signed up for the Surftown Half Marathon in Westerly, RI.  What a cool race it was.

I aced it with a speedy, crushing (as Coach called it) 2:19 time for a pace somewhere around 10:35 for 13.1 miles.  I was cooking and on fire.  I felt good.  I used a Galloway 5:00 minute run with 1-minute walk segment.

Here the ole girl is proud that she still has the gas in the tank.

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Today, I took the day off from “work” and ran a 5-hour endurance trail run.

Back to back runs on tired feet will hopefully prepare me for 31 miles in two weeks.

The one thing that I contemplated through this all was the power of me.

Yep, me.

I almost threw it all away.

I didn’t want to run a half-marathon and then run 5-hours today.

Heck, who in their right mind wants to do that.  The half-marathon was at half-marathon pace.  An exertion in and of itself.

In fact, during the start of my run today, I thought numerous times of just “calling it” and quitting.

But, I refused to.

I took the run in bite sized time increments.  Half an hour after half an hour got me through.

It is amazing what one is capable of.

Truly, if nothing else, I have pushed myself both physically and mentally to expand.

I may be physically and mentally tired – BUT I AM NOT GIVING UP.

How can I give up less than 2 weeks from race day???

Here I am after just completing my 5-hour trail run.

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The training continues this week, but with no “workouts” just 1 1/2 hours of runs daily.

I am either going to do the 20-mile Newport Galloway run or stay in Vermont (I will be in VT with a client on Thursday and Friday) and run 2.5 hours on the Mt. Ascutney trail system to simulate my upcoming race conditions.  After that, the following week, my runs are nothing more than easy, recovery runs as I taper into the big event.

No official half marathon race photos from Sunday yet but I will be sure to post them when they are released!

Hey, please keep this ole gal focused and leave me a word of encouragement in the comments below…pretty please!?!?

 

 

51 miles. Enough said.

I have come to realize that ultramarathon training is a bit more intense than marathon training.

For me, it has become somewhat of a love-hate relationship.

What do I love?

Running on the trails puts me in touch with nature.  I see and hear things that rarely do I in everyday life.

The training itself puts me in touch with myself.  I want to give up, give in, and just throw in the towel.  But I don’t.  I persevere, I have discipline, and I continue moving forward into doing the things I really think I can’t or don’t want to and then marvel at how far I have pushed myself.

Literally to the brink of exhaustion.

What I am told is that there is a reason.  Back to back runs adjust the body to tired legs.  You must run on spent, drawn, legs for hours.

I guess that is what I pay a coach to do to me!

This weekend, I did a nice 18 mile run in Newport.  It probably was the best run that I had in a while.  That was after already running 1 hour 15 minutes on Friday.

My friend Bill and I got it done together.  The rest of our group stopped at 14.  We kept it moving.

Yep, and I am the one in the center built like a “truck” in black with of course my stylish flower running skirt…  I definitely needed the compression socks on a run this long.  They saved me!

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Today, while I didn’t think I could do it, I did. I ran five hours on the trails at the Blue Hills with no one else’s company except my own breath, heartbeat, and inner thoughts.

Minute by minute – hour by hour, I got it down.  There were points I had to stop.  I have low blood pressure so there were points that I felt dizzy. I stopped munched on a chew, rested, and then got right back at it.

Overall, I hit 50 miles this week.  51.3 to be exact.  And, I am at 932.78 miles for the year.  Almost at the 1,000-mile mark.  Almost.

I am gearing up for another “grind-it out” week.  I have a 22-mile trail race on Sunday.  You would think that with a race, my workouts would diminish, but this race is more of a “training run.”

So, again, my coach has me hitting back to back runs with one planned on Saturday, the race on Sunday, and then another run on Monday.

Then it repeats all over again the following week.  Another 18 mile Saturday run with another 5 hour-trail run on Sunday.

I am praying to just have the mental stamina to get through the next few weeks.

I must remember that when it comes to ultrarunning – it is all mental.

Say a prayer for next Sunday…

Jay Peak is one of the toughest trail runs in the country.

Here is what is said, Finish and become a member of the elite crowd known as “Jay Peak Trail Race Finishers”…aka “one of the toughest runners in the country.”

Walk or run, if you complete this race, you will forever view other trail races as “cute”.

Here is an elevation map (yep almost 7,000 ft in 22 miles):

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Here I am resting and then giving the “I am finally done THUMBS UP!”

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SaveSave

Come, come and dance

Come, come and dance.

Dance with me

in the sacred dance.

 

Come, come and dance.

Shed away all that is illusion

protecting and fielding

a human life.

 

Come, come and dance.

Strip away all the falsities of a parade

marching by with

flamboyant costumes and masquerades.

 

Come, come and dance.

Take off your garments

throw off your ideologies

and sing with me

in all your great nakedness.

 

Come, come and dance.

I breathe in all that you are

and I breathe out all that I am not.

We too are intermingled.

We are one.

 

Come, come and dance.

Dance the beautiful, stirring,

liberating,

sacred dance.

 

Come, come and dance

with me.

 

I am there.

Be still and know that I am there.

Waiting silently for you to awaken

to grow into your destiny.

 

Be still and know that I am there.

Needing nothing else in return

just a recognition of knowing.

 

Be still and know that I am there.

Discovering that all along

that illumination was just a reflection.

 

Be still and know that I am there.

Having the courage

to live in the moment of expectation.

 

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This photo was taken almost four years ago to the day.  A solitary trail run during Grad School.  Winona, Minnesota, St. Mary’s University of Minnesota.  Rivers call us to be still and reflect.  This river most likely at some point in its life empties into the Mississippi, as Winona lies on the bluffs of that mighty river.

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And, just because I am awfully sentimental.  The athletic hallway to the pool I swam in nightly after class.  Four years ago this week, I finished my final Masters Summer Residence after three years of study.

 

 

I have been lost.

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

Lost in a world who doesn’t see my pain.

 

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

Lost from a future no longer.

 

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

Lost in the sad gravity of life.

 

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

 

Then my soul is found.

My heart once crippled transforms

into ballet dancers

dancing

under the gaze and in the embrace

of belonging.

 

I have been lost.

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

Lost in a world who doesn’t see my pain.

 

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

Lost from a future no longer.

 

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

Lost in the sad gravity of life.

 

I have been lost.

Lost for many years.

 

Then my soul is found.

My heart once crippled transforms

into ballet dancers

dancing

under the gaze and in the embrace

of belonging.

 

Divinity​ awaits you

 

The one moment of error is to act as if

science is the language of the soul.

As if life depended upon the logical seen with no

witness to all that stirs within unknown.

 

To feel as if life had boundaries that existed

that could be defined or observed.

Surely, even you, have felt something beyond;

the ephemeral, the stirrings, and the song of the heart,

crowding out all that is known; the illusions of a world.

 

Facts are the modes of knowing but only poets

pierce deeply into the soul.  Boundaries do not exist in a

rebels voice. A voice from the dark night of the soul offering

redemption.

 

The soul is your mentor of things to come,

possibilities unknown.

The door has always been there to frighten you and invite you,

through the doorway of divinity

that has always been open and waiting for you.