Friday, February 6, 2009

Finding My Pace

Someone asked me to write an article for a local women’s journal on how to get started running. Oddly enough, I never considered myself a “runner.” Races for me are pure pleasure for sharing the energy of people you run with… and for hearing the families on the sides encouraging you along. Who wouldn’t want to race? It’s not every day I hear people cheering me on!

But like I said, for years, I never ran, only walked. Running made me feel inadequate, out of shape (and breath), and feeling like garbage at the end.

Many years ago, my then-boyfriend encouraged me to try a run… slowly. Not at the greyhound pace at which I loved to start. I agreed. And started out slowly… still kind of out of breath. But I felt much better. So we did more runs together, until that fateful day when he whistled while I ran. Whistled. The shock.

So we began to run separately. Me at my own pace. And I learned to give myself credit for getting out there. I stopped comparing myself to “where I should be.” My boyfriend became my greatest cheerleader, and still is after 11 years of marriage.

Then came the first 5 mile race! I was so nervous. But I made it. Slow as molasses, but made it! A few years later, I did what I thought was previously impossible – I signed up for the Rock N’Roll Marathon in San Diego. To get there, I teamed up with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and trained with a fabulous group of people. And what I discovered was no matter the mileage, no matter how freezing cold the weather (we lived in Boston), I enjoyed our runs together with the group … because I could talk to people while I ran.

So the mantra for my long runs became this:

Number 1. Find people to run with if I can – who share the same “talking” pace.
Number 2. I don’t beat myself up. When I do, I recognize it as “Let me beat myself up a little more...”
Number 3. When I go on solo runs, keep it slow and steady, and remember how good I will feel when I’m done.

For my article Running: How To Get Started Without Tripping Over Your Laces, see .

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Cry

This is beautiful. Had to post it.

"When all the things we want beyond our reach move slowly within our reach, it is easy to feel good about life. But if our sense of well-being becomes dependent on the constant delivery of goods to our door, we experience a sense of loss when the supply suddenly dries up, or we no longer perceive it has the same value. At this point, we are thrown back on ourselves and must live on what we find there. In a way, we are finally forced to rely on the one thing already within the compass of our grasp – our soul’s natural entanglement in the world. This entanglement is often perceived for the first time through a sense of loss. It is as if we first stumble into our belonging by realizing how desperately out of place we feel. This sense of loss has a natural way of drawing us inside ourself. We might at first label the body’s simple need to focus inward depression. But as we practice going inward, we come to realize that much of it is not depression in the least; it is a cry for something else, often the physical body’s simple need for rest, for contemplation, and for a kind of forgotten courage, one difficult to hear, demanding not a raise, but another life."

-David Whyte
The Heart Aroused: Poetry and the Preservation of Soul in Corporate America

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

A New Year's Resolution

“Peace comes when we stop pretending to be something other than our true selves.”
-Debbie Ford

“You were born to manifest the glory of God that is within you. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
-Marianne Williamson

So it’s almost mid-January… and I found myself wondering… what is it that I want for this New Year? I have a picture in my head of how my life, my business was supposed to be last year… And that wasn’t exactly how it turned out. But the thing is: It was a great year. There was tremendous growth. My business took off. I became certified in coaching. I got out of my comfort zone a zillion times, fell flat on my tush a plenty, and was…okay! And boy – did I learn what I needed to know. I am blessed to have the most amazing clients, who give me the opportunity to walk their journeys with them. I learned so much from them. I am collaborating with some pretty neat individuals to bring coaching to people who are in transition at their jobs and careers.

So what’s my hesitation this year? What’s still unresolved? Whose measurements are still hanging over me?

The fact is it’s all made up. How we’re doing, how we perceive ourselves. I know very well from the work I do that we have free will and a choice how we might view a topic. So if I find myself beating myself up, then what is it really I need to make peace with? What part of me have I not loved or accepted?

So this year I step out of that comfort zone again – a zillion times – to hold myself as a child of God, just as I am.