It takes hard days like yesterday for me to fully appreciate all that I have.
My marathon is less than 3 weeks away and I think that it has been taking a toll on me. It’s not so much the running, it’s the mental game I play out in my mind when I think of all the time that is spent training and cross training, and the guilt of knowing that it means time away from my family.
It seems that even if I am at home, much of the time I am pretty exhausted both mentally and physically and don’t really put a lot of extra effort into the mom stuff like I usually do. I know my kids don’t really notice too much because I keep them occupied with park time and I invite friends over more, but I notice. It’s hard for me to think that there is more I could be doing to be closer to them.
I read this quote yesterday on Sperlygirl’s site that seemed to speak right to me:
“you can’t be at the pole and the equator at the same time. you must choose your own line, as i hope to do, and it will probably be color.”
~vincent van gogh
This was just what I needed to hear. I have tried to be in too many places at the same time and it is catching up with me. Instead of putting my energies into many separate endeavors, I need to pick the ones that are most important to me and give them my all. I will have to be patient in knowing that the many other projects and goals I have will still be around when I have more time. I Must. Find. Balance.
With this in mind, I tried to think of some ways to allow for some much needed family time. I switched my long run to Friday, instead of the usual Saturday, freeing up a whole day to go to the zoo. (I heart the Pheonix Zoo!) I also unplugged for
the rest most of the day, and spent time relaxing with my kids. We did crafts, looked for bugs in the yard and made some yummy smoothies together. We did have to go to a Dr. appointment first, but that even seemed fun. Strange, I know…
By the evening my foul mood had all but disappeared. It helped that my blogging ‘family’ was sending happy thoughts my way (thanks!) and I got to spend some of the night with my closest girl friends. When I got home, my sweet husband showed me this playlist he had created to help me keep track of all of my ‘songs of the day’. It was a really sweet gesture and I was excited to have an easier way to reminisce about the last few months and what I was feeling when I picked each song. The videos for each of these songs are right here if you want to listen to any of them. Just fyi.
This morning I woke up feeling like I was back on track in my life. The whole time I ran I could feel the optimism returning and my sense of determination was stronger than ever. Even the songs that I was listening to seemed to be in sync with my thoughts. Lines like “I can’t shine if you don’t shine” (The Killers) reminded me of why I run in the first place. Taking care of myself is the same as taking care of my family. I need to be at my best to give my best.
I made a promise to myself today that I would no longer feel guilty for running. This is something I love. Something that gives me a sense of accomplishment. Something that allows me time to imagine and dream. Something that makes me feel like a rockstar. (thanks Sassy) I also promised myself that I would not bite off more than I can chew with extra-curricular activities and other needless distractions. I have plenty on my plate and I want to work on perfecting those things first.
My marathon training is coming to an end, and today was my last long run before the big day. Knowing this made my morning run feel that much easier. My last few miles of running were by far my best. I feel bad for anyone who may have heard me belting out Fall Out Boy’s “Arm Race” or Christina Aguilera’s “Moulin Rouge”, but I couldn’t help it. I felt good and I was freakin’ enjoying myself!
I hope you all enjoy your weekend as well!