“My work self is suffocating my life me.”—Liz Lemon to hallucinatory Oprah on 30 Rock
You’re just going to have to trust me when I tell you that I have composed some incredible blogs in the past couple of months. Quirky and offbeat, yet at the same time, articulate and accessible to the masses. In my fevered imagination, I was the Tina Fey of running blogs.
In real life … not so much.
It all started around March 1, when I woke up very early one morning and realized that over the next 31 days, I would need to finish a paper, write an exam and run a 30K race. Oh, and work. And do all the other stuff most folks do to keep a home and family humming along.
Long story short – I made a plan and executed it. Finished the paper a couple of weeks before the exam. Ran Around the Bay on March 27th. Wrote my final on March 30th. None of it went perfectly – but it was all okay. Looking at my speed training results in the weeks leading up to Around the Bay, I let go of the pipe dream of finishing in less than 3 hours, and logged a respectable-but-by-no-means-flashy, mid-pack finish.
Category place: 243/494
Gender place: 1,460/2,973
I was happy enough with the result – but mostly, I was happy with setting a realistic goal for this race. I took stock of where I was, picked an achievable finish time (3:10) and managed to exceed it. Though the last 10K of the race was certainly harder than the first 10, I felt pretty good in those final kilometres.
My happiness may have been influenced by the fact that it was just a really fun weekend. My middle sister, Kathy, a gifted yoga teacher, came with me to Hamilton and served as support crew. She was an incredible good sport, staying overnight in a lovely B&B in Hamilton and actually volunteering to sleep on the hide-a-bed, even when the owner described it as, “okay, but no hide-a-bed is every really comfortable”. I owe her one.
On race day, Kath saw me off at the start line, and then met me several times on the race course, bringing along, at various points, her husband, her sister-in-law and her father-in-law. The Hamilton family I didn’t realize I had. On top of that, my Dad drove in from Toronto to see the end of the race. So, it’s true then … I AM the centre of the universe!!
And the exam I wrote 3 days afterwards? I completely blanked out on the first question. Couldn’t remember the five immutable truths of organizational culture. This on a course titled “organizational culture”. Fortunately for me, I did fine on the rest of the exam and on my assignments. In the end, I got an A. I’m not bragging. I’m just sayin’.
Then … another month went by. A month with just one blog post. A house that hasn’t gotten any neater. A rotten cold. And one more course to register for in the university-program-that-never-ends.
Time to set a new goal and generate a little deadline pressure. Done and … done. My next race is the National Capital Race Weekend Half Marathon. And I’m determined to break two hours, just to prove that the first (and only) time I’ve run a sub-2 hour half wasn’t a complete fluke.