Juggling Oranges

Posted on February 28, 2014. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


Tuesday was one of those days I wondered why I do what I do for a living. Why, exactly, am I here? Nothing was going as planned. The day was supposed to be devoted to grant writing. A deadline is coming too quickly. Just a matter of days.

The disruption started at 5:42am with one crisis and then continued until well past 7:00pm. It’s always the small things that get you, and the immediacy they demand. A coaching situation to resolve right now, a shortage of supplies at three sites to be remedied today, a promise to 18 girls that must be kept.

The confusion in time zones that causes you to miss a call you’ve had scheduled for two weeks.

And then the big things:  Remember that conference on Thursday? Guess what? You get to deliver a piece of it. Start preparing. Oh, and, to help, our team will have a one and a half hour conference call this afternoon.

Timing is everything.  How to participate in a conference call while driving to three sites and take adequate notes while running supplies into buildings? We are on point number two in the call, two points away from my piece. Surely I have time to sprint up to the school with 15 pounds of oranges, drop them where they belong, and sprint back to my car with my phone on mute before they ask me for my input? Barely. But I try. I can still answer questions out of breath, car door slamming, engine starting before I break three laws and drive in a school zone with my phone on speaker, resting on my knee.

But I am irritated. Anxious. There is too much to do and not enough time. I hear my other line ringing and messages piling up. Hear texts chiming, emails accumulating. My eye is on the clock and I’m thinking about the grant and remembering the other phone calls I was to have made today. An office day, it was supposed to be, an administrative day. A day to write that grant.

As I sprint two blocks from my car to the last school, up two flights of steps, and down the hall juggling another 15 pounds of oranges and my phone, muted conference call still going at my ear, I see her come out of the bathroom.

I don’t know her name, but I know her, this little girl. We met last week when I subbed for her team.  She is shy, chubby.  Tilts her head down and smiles bashfully when she sees me.  She is wearing a chain around her neck, the chain she got in Girls on the Run to collect little sparkly feet on. One foot equals one mile.  The girls accumulate feet all season as they accumulate miles.

One sparkly foot dangles from her chain. Last week, her teammates each got at least two feet. One girl earned four.

She stops walking and stands there quietly in the hall, rocking a little from side to side.

I know this girl.  Shy, chubby, not athletic, wanting to speak but too timid to do so. Waiting patiently just the same. She is me when I was 9, 10.

I take the phone away from my ear.

“You’re wearing your foot,” I say.

She nods slowly, smile broadening, and raises her hand to her chain.

I nod back. “Think you’ll get another today?”

She nods again, a look of determination deepening her smile, and clutches her foot.

“I think so too,” I say.

She raises her chin just a little and walks proudly back to her classroom.

“Hey?” I hear someone say my name and I remember my call. “Are you there?”

“Yes, I’m here,” I take the phone off mute and watch the girl walk down the hall.  Now I remember why I’m here.

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The Bravest Runner

Posted on December 20, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


By the time the 5K was over, word had spread about the young girl in stocking feet.  Sobbing, she crossed the finish line without her shoes, her mother trailing not far behind.  Her coaches saw her coming from across the line, where they stood holding finisher’s medals, waiting to crown their girls.

What happened? Her coaches surrounded her, concerned that she was injured.

It took awhile before she could stifle the tears enough to tell them.  Blisters. Painful blisters bubbled up on her feet about a mile from the finish line.  She could hardly go on in such pain, and her mother told her she could stop if she wanted to.

Not her.  She was too close and had worked too hard, had been looking forward to this race for weeks and couldn’t possibly stop now, so close.

She took off her shoes instead and ran a mile in her socks, crying all the way.

A coach hugged her tight. If you can do this, she said shaking her head, you can take anything life throws at you.

My hero, the bravest runner at last Saturday’s Girls on the Run 5K. I hope I grow up to be just like her.

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Hill Repeats, or why dog poop can be your new best friend

Posted on December 13, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


Carrie and I are at it again. Another half marathon, another training plan under way, working toward the Austin half marathon on February 16. We are using the same training plan that got us through the San Antonio Rock ‘n Roll half marathon just a few weeks ago.

Which means we start with hill repeats.  Temple Hill.  The nearly half-mile, pretty darn steep monster hill we conquered last time around. Only it doesn’t feel like a conquest. It feels like an initiation.

Monday. Four to five short hills were on the schedule. Half way up Temple Hill, or the equivalent of six lampposts.

We braced ourselves at the bottom, walked in circles, mentally preparing for the trek. I leveled my gaze on the ground in front of me as we started the first repeat. We chatted two-thirds of the way up, counting lampposts.

On the second repeat, I noted objects to guide me. Look for those markers, and I don’t have to count. A rust-colored sign at lamppost two, a screw in the middle of the sidewalk between lampposts three and four. A pile of dog poop at lamppost five.

I grimaced when I first saw it. Some poor soul had already imprinted his shoe with it, and I was immediately angry. What kind of moron let’s their dog poop smack in the middle of where people walk?

By the third repeat, I was breathing too heavily to be angry with the pile or its owner’s owner.  I remembered it was there, looked for it, ran around.

By the fourth repeat, I was almost glad to see it, sitting there near lamppost five, not so far from the end.

By the fifth repeat, I actively sought it out, raised my head in anticipation. Why is it taking so long to come into view? Is that it up ahead? No, that’s a leaf. Where is that darn poop?

Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, there it was, like an old friend waiting patiently for my arrival.  I was never more happy to see something so foul, so repelling, yet so close to the finish that I wanted to sing. Instead, I breathed deeply and smiled in relief as I crossed the line.

That wasn’t so bad, we said as we bounced down the hill, instinctively avoiding the pile. We did it, we sighed. We reached our goal.


Tomorrow is Girls on the Run of Bexar County’s Fall 2013 5K, the culminating event for our season, where our girls get to experience first-hand what it feels like to finish something they’ve worked for 10 long, hard weeks to achieve. The excitement is palpable, among the coaches as well as the girls. We hope that the confidence the girls gain when they cross the finish line travels with them to every other area of their lives, for the rest of their lives.

I know they are nervous going in. If I could offer them just one bit of advice, it would be this.  You don’t have to embrace the dog poop you encounter on your path, but you don’t have to fear it either. For all you know, that pile of poop could very well be the harbinger of joy and relief, of much better things to come. Step around it. The finish line is waiting.

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Posted on December 6, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


I felt like Gulliver, standing in the gym packed with kids and waiting for the Girls on the Run coach.  Part of the team was already there sitting on the floor, heads bobbing together over someone’s homework while they discussed the story problem laid out before them.  I tried to appear present but disinterested.  The last thing I wanted was for them to ask me for help. I’ve always hated story problems.

We spotted each other across the gym at the same time.  She locked her eyes on me and wouldn’t let go. I smiled, at first.  She was so cute, a toddler with bouncing hair, standing there in her little dress, arm outstretched and finger pointed at…something.  I glanced in the direction her finger demanded, but saw nothing of interest.  I tilted my head quizzically as she started to run, straight at me, finger still pointing.  On the end of her finger was a lump. A rather large one.

A fear greater than the one of story problems overtook me. What was that on her finger? Would she really have the audacity to wipe it on me? And why me, of all the people in here? Should I run, grab her by the wrist in the nick of time, divert her attention with something shiny? Did I have anything shiny? Before I could make a logical and ethical decision, she stopped inches from me.  Her eyes had not left my face as she ran, and, although I struggled to retain my composure, I wondered if she sensed my alarm. She smiled widely and raised her arm toward me.

“Look,” she said proudly.

I braced myself and looked. A small, black butterfly perched on her fingertip, its wings quivering slightly.

“A butterfly.” I was relieved and astonished. “Did it just fly up and land on you?” I asked.

“Yes!” she beamed.

We both stared in silence at the butterfly dawdling comfortably on her fingertip until it decided to fly away.  She looked back up at me, smiled again, and ran back in the direction she came from.

How strange, I thought, that she chose me to share such a wondrous thing with. How strange, and how lucky.

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Rethinking Pink

Posted on September 13, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

pink glasses

I just bought a new pair of running shoes. Bright purple Asics. Very unlike me. I’ve always hated purple.

A year ago I would have balked at the purchase, told the salesperson to take them back, thank you very much, I’d rather have a pair of shoes that maybe didn’t fit quite so well but that weren’t so, well, purple.

But that was a year ago. Times have changed—at least since I bought a pair of bright pink reading glasses.

I’ve always hated pink even more.

When I say hate, I mean loathe. I mean face-squinching, stomach-churning abhorrence. Growing up, my sister and I inevitably received the exact same gift for birthdays and holidays. Exactly the same, that is, with one exception. Whatever the gift was, she got blue. I got pink.

No one ever asked me what my favorite color was. (Decidedly not pink.) No one bothered. They simply bought every article of clothing, bedding, bathing accessory in pink. And you know how it is. Pink begets pink. When one relative saw me with All Things Pink, others made wild assumptions and purchased even more pink. I was forced to live in a Box of Pink.

When I left home for college, I quickly and thoroughly cleansed my world of All Things Pink. I did not purchase one even remotely pink thing until I was well into my 30s:  One sweater, a beautiful cardigan with pearlized buttons that the store did not have in black. It sat in my closet, tags dangling, for nearly a year before I wore it—and then, only because laundry was weeks overdue.

Yet just about a year ago when I decided it was time to quit fighting the fact that I need reading glasses, I found myself standing in front of a rack handling a pair of bright pink frames. Pink? I shuddered, yet turned them over in my hands, tried them on, tested them on a label I’d been struggling with in aisle 3. I replaced them on the rack and loitered in the antacids aisle.

Pink glasses. Pink? I paced the aisle, completely dismayed that I was considering buying them. Why, dear God, why would the thought even cross my mind? These glasses couldn’t sit in a drawer for a year. I would need them daily to help me see clearly the very intricacies of life, the things that were right in front of my face.

Then it struck me. Pink. A primary color of Girls on the Run.

Since becoming council director, I’ve faced some of the most challenging days of my life. There’s not a day that goes by where I have to do something I can’t do. Maybe I don’t know how to do it, I don’t have the skill set. Maybe I don’t enjoy doing it and I simply don’t want to. Maybe it’s not my strength. Or, maybe, I feel incapable. Inadequate. That if I do this thing, whatever it is, surely I will fail.

But then I do it anyway. Because it must be done.

And because, as it turns out, I can.

Girls on the Run may be about the girls—empowering them to live outside the Girl Box and to reach their full potential—but along the way, serving them has altered the way I see the world. Inevitably, what I see differently is me.

So I put back the Alka Seltzer, Rolaids, and Tums and walked out of the store with pink glasses, a daily reminder that there is another way to see.

Last year, pink glasses. This year, purple shoes. I figure a new vision won’t get me very far unless I’m willing to take it to the street, give it a good run.

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Becoming Athena

Posted on August 30, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


Megan sat on the steps, fidgety and red with frustration.  She blinked back tears, too proud or stubborn to cry in public.

“There’s got to be someone,” her teammates moaned.  “Just pick a name already.”  They, too, were frustrated. We’d been waiting 10 minutes after everyone else finished for Megan to come up with a name. Just one. Single. Name.

The goal of this Girls on the Run exercise was to identify the characteristics of a good role model.  The girls were to come up with the names of women who had an impact on them.  Megan couldn’t think of anyone.

Her mother?  No.

Sister?  Didn’t have one.

Cousin, aunt, family friend? Nope.

Surely there was a teacher or coach who had one good quality Megan wanted to emulate?  Nada.

Lucy Stone, Harriet Tubman, Amelia Earhart…anyone public, famous, renowned?  There was none.

Megan wasn’t the only one fighting tears.  The other coach and I clenched our teeth against them too.  How could a girl reach adolescence and have not one woman to look up to?  We didn’t know how to feel.  Frustrated and outraged for starters, but by the end of the day just plain sad.

The assistant coach—my sister—and I talked about this for weeks.  We dissected our childhood to come up with the names of women who had an impact on us.  We couldn’t think of many.  Our mom, an extraordinary woman, topped the list, but there weren’t too many others.  The fewer names we came up with, the more we felt the gravity of our role with this team of young girls. Whether we knew it or not, and whether we liked it or not, we were there to be role models.  Our behavior and our words mattered in ways we would probably never know.  They were watching (whether they knew it or not) to see how two ordinary women handled life.

Once I realized this, I wanted to vomit.  If they only knew how many mistakes I had made, how often I still screwed up, they’d laugh me off the playground.  But when my stomach stopped churning I recognized that this was part of what drew me to Girls on the Run to begin with.  If I had only had someone to show me how to be, how to think for myself, how to choose, perhaps my life would have taken a different turn here and there.  What I was looking for as a child was a mentor.  I simply didn’t know it at the time.

Where did it come from, the idea of the mentor?  Not from the world of business or education, but from a poem.  Remember the story of Odysseus from Homer’s The Odyssey? Odysseus went off to fight a war, leaving behind his wife and son, and after years away wanted only to get back home.  It took him nearly a lifetime to reach his destination.  Along the way, he encountered peril after peril and was often unsure how to proceed.  He needed advice and was fortunate to have someone watching over him, to help him through the rough spots:  Athena, goddess of wisdom and strategy.

When Athena appears not only to Odysseus but also to his son, Telemachus, she does not come as herself.  Rather, she takes on the guise of someone else:  Mentor, Odysseus’s old and trusted friend.  Her role is to whisper words of wisdom into Odysseus’s ear to guide him home.  It is also to help Telemachus not simply adjust to his life circumstances, but to evolve.  It is Athena’s guidance—the counsel of the goddess within the (hu)man—that sparks the courage already kindling within both men.

This is the role of the mentor:  to set someone on the path of success, of living well. Mentoring requires we give all of our wisdom, our wits, and our hearts.  It requires the mentor to reach deep inside to call on reserves she might not know she has.

I still run into Megan from time to time.  She shouts me down, waves, smiles broadly, and calls me by the nickname she gave me:  Miss What’s-Yer-Name.  She never could pronounce my last name, refused to call me by my first.  I don’t mind.  I’m just glad she remembers me.

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Observations for New Coaches

Posted on August 23, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

circle of feet

When I first heard about Girls on the Run three years ago, I knew I had to coach.  I read everything I could find and cried the whole time. Why wasn’t there a program like this when I was a kid?  It would have saved me infinite time and pain.  The more I learned about the organization, the more I knew it was for me.  Building confidence in young girls through running—could there be anything more perfect?

I now have the privilege of training our council’s coaches.  There is so much to cover on training day, however, that there’s not time to tell them everything I wish I could.  These are just a few things.

It’s ok to be afraid.

I (over)prepared for my first coaching season—6th-8th graders—but as day one approached, I was scared to death.  It was the idea of Girls on the Run, I realized, that attracted me.  I hadn’t really considered the fact that coaching meant I’d actually have to talk to girls.  But the program is experiential.  That means we have to do things together.

What did I know about kids, after all? I don’t have any. My nieces live halfway across the country.  My foray into teaching kids lasted one morning in a preschool—3 hours of enough finger paint to shellac the entire school, more full and exploding training pants than I care to remember, and infinite Oreo cookie crumbs smeared in places that were never designed to see them.  Not for me, thanks very much. I chose to stick with teaching adults instead.

So when week #1 rolled around and I found myself facing a dozen middle school girls, I was terrified.  What if I said something stupid? Or, worse, what if one of them did and I didn’t know how to respond? What if someone came to me for help and I failed her? Would I even know they were asking—did we speak the same language?  Not English or Spanish or anything you could pick up through Rosetta Stone.  What I mean is, would we relate?

It took a couple of weeks, but I figured something out.  Everything I felt and thought and feared—they did too.  I may have had the words to express myself (or the wisdom to choose not to) where the girls were just learning.  But the main thing they needed was to be heard, to know that not only did they have a voice, but that their voice mattered.  They needed the space to take hold of their voice, and then to run with it.

As the season went on, my fear slowly subsided. I even added two words to my vocabulary:  Awesome and joy.

Be real.

Being a coach can be tough.  You’re not their mother (even if you are). You’re not their teacher (even if you are).  And—don’t panic about this one—you’re not their friend.  You are an amalgamation of all these roles and none of them.  You are there to care for, guide, and mentor the girls on your team.  You are there to serve.

Many organizations talk up “service,” a word so overused that we often take it for granted. Even McDonald’s serves.  I’ve had to ask myself what it really means to serve, and I find a clue in the first part of our mission statement: “We inspire girls to be joyful, healthy and confident…”  To inspire means that something external activates something internal.  The internal piece is already there, whole and (im)perfect.

We are not there to fix anyone.  To fix implies that something is broken.  We are not there to help anyone.  To help implies that they are somehow lesser, incomplete, unfinished.  We are not there to save or rescue anyone. This implies that they are lost.

We are there to serve:  The whole in you, with all your (im)perfections, to meet the whole in them—mind, body, and spirit.  To do this, you must open your heart.  You must be authentic and real. Kids are smart. They can sense when someone is posing. They will accept you and like you, no matter what, as long as you are you.

If you let it, it will change you.

Coaching for Girls on the Run appeals to people for a variety of reasons.   Some coaches are parents or teachers who see the struggle of tweenhood first-hand and wish to somehow alleviate it.  Others remember it, wouldn’t go back there in time for a bazillion dollars, and want to alter the trajectory of someone else’s life, to show them how to save time and pain.  And then there are the runners.  Those of you who know that running saves lives, because it’s saved yours.

If you embrace your fear and open your heart, your life will be different because of your team.  They are wise without knowing it, and will say things that blow you away.  You will see the look on their faces when they run, and it will stop you in your tracks.  My hope is that you will come away from your experience with a new word added to your vocabulary too:  Joy.

Someone asked me just yesterday, how do you tell a girl to be confident?  You don’t.  You show her.  Not only that she can reach inside and pull out the beauty and greatness that’s already there. You demonstrate it yourself.

How incredibly fortunate we are to have such amazing coaches who can do just that.

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Where Do We Find Courage?

Posted on May 31, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


“I really like to run,” the woman at my elbow was saying.  I was only half listening.  The 3rd Annual Girls on the Run Cupcake 5K Fun Run, our annual fundraiser sponsored by Kate’s Frosting, was about to begin and we were gathered at the start line.

Was everyone here? Did they know where the start line began? Was the water stop ready?  Was it 8:00 yet? My attention was divided between too many things to listen adequately.

“I really want her to like running,” the woman nodded toward her 10-ish daughter who was pacing the curb, drawing a line on the pavement with her toe, “as much as I do.”

“Yes,” I murmured, still distracted.  Kate was setting up the tower of cupcakes at the finish line.

“You know I’ve run 14 marathons,” she said nonchalantly, as if she declared she’d eaten 14 cupcakes instead.

For perhaps the first time during our conversation, I looked straight at her.  She was shorter than me, the top of her head reaching maybe my chin.  Not muscular or runner thin.  Plump, to be precise.

I closed my gaping mouth before a fly landed in it, acutely aware and somewhat ashamed that—blink—just like that I had made a judgment about this woman and her ability or propensity to run. Unconsciously, I had observed and assessed her.  She didn’t look like a runner—whatever that means—to me.

Two seconds, Malcolm Gladwell contends, is all it takes for us to decide.  In the blink of an eye we make up our minds about what something—or someone—is or is not.

Fourteen marathons.  Four. Teen.  Never in a million years would I have guessed.  I must have looked as surprised as I felt because she smiled wryly and nodded.  “I’ve done a half Ironman too.”

“No way!” I blurted, no longer able to contain what by now had become excitement.

When I closed my gaping mouth I fortunately opened my mind.  Standing here in front of me was true inspiration.  If she could do these things, then why couldn’t I?

It’s been in the back of my mind for years that maybe one day I could do a half Ironman.  Maybe start with an Olympic distance tri.  I’ve still never run a marathon.  Trained for 2, but stopped by injury.  What was I waiting for to try again?

Inspiration.  Courage.

I have had neither, and didn’t even realize it until I met the marathon woman.  I haven’t lived up to the message that’s been posted on my refrigerator since January 15, 2009, the date on the tattered calendar square that states:

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.”

–          Anaïs Nin

This square of paper has stared me in the face for four years in two different homes. The message travels with me, so that I don’t forget it. Some days I stop as I’m rummaging through the fridge and read it.  Other days I don’t see it at all, hanging amid the Mickey Mouse and bluebonnet magnets.

For the past 3+ weeks, however, I have seen it. Read it anew.  Each time, I think of this woman and her fourteen marathons, her half Ironman, and I see my own possibilities expand.

I am excited to try something new.  And when I think about this woman, I remember her daughter tight-rope-walking the curb and think what a lucky girl, to have a mom who can show her so many things.

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A Breath of Inspiration

Posted on May 10, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


One important fact I confirmed this week:  Breathing is essential to running.  I’m not talking about breathing technique. I’m talking about the simple act of inhaling and exhaling a single breath of air.

Sometimes it’s not so simple.

The upper respiratory infection I’ve been fighting for over a week is almost gone, thank God.  I think I might have been a pain about it.  This is the first time in 7 years I’ve been sick, have had to take antibiotics, have closed up shop and hung out on the couch watching endless reruns of The Closer.

Finally, it has run its course.

Now that I feel like a lump of, well, something not so good, I need inspiration to hit the pavement again.  Thought I’d share with you some of the quotes that remind me why I run.


It’s very hard in the beginning to understand that the whole idea is not to beat the other runners. Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit.   ― George Sheehan


No matter how slow I run, I’m still faster than my couch.   ― Anonymous


Even though I can’t tell others whether they should chase their marathon dreams, I highly recommend they do something completely out of character, something they never in a million years thought they’d do, something they may fail miserably at. Because sometimes the places where you end up finding your true self are the places you never thought to look. That, and I don’t want to be the only one who sucks at something.   ― Dawn Dais


The reason we race isn’t so much to beat each other,… but to be with each other.   ― Christopher McDougall

man walking

The trouble with jogging is that by the time you realize you’re not in shape for it, it’s too far to walk back.   ― Franklin P. Jones


People think I’m crazy to put myself through such torture, though I would argue otherwise. Somewhere along the line we seem to have confused comfort with happiness. Dostoyevsky had it right: ‘Suffering is the sole origin of consciousness.’ Never are my senses more engaged than when the pain sets in. There is a magic in misery. Just ask any runner.   ― Dean Karnazes


Jogging is very beneficial.  It’s good for your legs and your feet.  It’s also very good for the ground.  It makes it feel needed.   ― Charles Schultz

boston marathon

If you are losing faith in human nature, go out and watch a marathon.   ― Kathrine Switzer


There is something magical about running; after a certain distance, it transcends the body. Then a bit further, it transcends the mind. A bit further yet, and what you have before you, laid bare, is the soul.”   ― Kristin Armstrong

Have an awesome week.  Breathe easy; run hard.

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(Temporarily) Unstoppable

Posted on May 3, 2013. Filed under: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |


“With an unmanned, half-mile-long freight train barreling toward a city, a veteran engineer and a young conductor race against the clock to prevent a catastrophe.”

When Unstoppable came out in 2010, I wondered how anyone could squeeze an hour and a half out of a story about a runaway train.  I skipped the movie and promptly forgot it.

Until this week.  It seems to be cable’s movie-of-the-week and I can’t get away from it. Believe me, I’ve tried.  It finally caught up with me one brain-dead night, and I decided to give it a shot.

Half an hour was all I could stand.  And that’s 30 minutes of my life I will never get back.

Still, this week seems to be a fitting time for Unstoppable.  My training has derailed.

No swimming or weight training until further notice.  Doctor’s orders. Which is fine, considering my shoulder doesn’t want to move too much anyway.

I didn’t bother to ask him about biking or running. I figured I’d do it anyway, so why ask?

The thing is, I just don’t feel like doing it.

Between healing and then coming down with some kind of virus, it’s been 10 days since I’ve done much more than walk my dogs.  Although I’ve walked them a lot (one now hides at the sight of her leash), my energy level won’t move into overdrive.

Ever have those days when your head really wants you to be out there doing something, but your body refuses?  Each morning, I set my alarm, planning to get up and run.  Each morning, I shut it completely off thinking maybe I’ll bike later (I don’t) or run tomorrow (I haven’t).

I catch myself instead staring wistfully at my training log as I mark another X through an unachievable workout, distraught by the momentum of nothingness that seems to be building.

I am hoping this lag in training is not unstoppable.  I’m not quite sure what to do to get back on the right track.  If I know my body, it will start one morning on its own, without telling me.

(Sort of like the jack-in-the-box you had when you were a kid, and you kept cranking and cranking and thought you were getting nowhere and then Pop! goes the weasel, and you jumped about a mile out of your skin.  Stupid toy, scaring kids to death like that.)

I just hope it doesn’t take catastrophic explosions, the destruction of small towns, or Denzel Washington to get me re-railed.

Well, maybe Denzel Washington.

Any suggestions?

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