Monthly Archives: December 2012

About that time again

So it’s been about a year since I started running regularly again. I joined my gym at this time last year and felt empowered to take control of my body and my health. The year has been quite a rollercoaster and although I have done a mostly excellent job at keeping up with my running habits and even relished the noticeable changes in my body, the last few months have been too busy to put  fitness first.

Lookin' good!

Lookin’ good!

What a silly concept, too busy to put fitness and health at the top of your list of priorities? But unfortunately that’s how it so often is. With so many things going on day-to-day and my constant houdini-ing around the globe, it’s hard to maintain consistency.

That is, of course, one of the many reasons running has become such an attractive option for exercise. It doesn’t matter where you are, you can always find somewhere to run – in a park, down the street, through a city, at the gym, etc. You can’t just magically have a bike anywhere you travel, or an elliptical machine, or weights. Theoretically, running really is the best option.

But every time I travel it’s difficult to find the right place, or find the time, or the right climate or conditions for a good run. Plus my travels are usually accompanied by an equally overbearing jetlag. So, I end up taking a break…(like, ahem, the last 3 or 4 months.) Which means it’s always like starting from scratch when I do get back to the gym.

So yesterday was my comeback day. Not in the “First place at the marathon” kind of way, but in the “I’ll be happy if I finish the race” kind of way. I did it, sort of. 25 minutes would have seemed like a joke just a few months ago when I was pushing myself to 50 or more. But I can accept that 25 is a reasonable starting pace for a few months off the track.

The biggest challenge I faced was not shortness of breath, nor pain in my chest, nor even boredom. My biggest challenge was an irking pain in my right hip and knee. The pain which kept me from pushing farther and which caused me to take a few minute break in the middle to stretch out and regain composure.

My future awaits

My future awaits

I am hoping the pain is temporary, or perhaps just from pushing an immobile body “too hard” on the first day. Or maybe it’s just the shoes. Sure, let’s blame the shoes.

So my goals have temporarily been revised from running again, to running without pain. I’ll try out a new pair of sneakers this week to see if it makes any difference. And (gulp) if not I guess it’ll just be another excuse to go see a doctor!

Has anyone else out there has physical limitations or challenges to starting up exercise again after a long time off?

A Happy Ending in 2012

To say 2012 has been a crazy year would be an understatement. The amount of eye-opening and life-changing experiences I’ve had over the year have been nothing short of a blessing, both the good and the bad, and a true example of character development and personal growth.

From start to finish – from ending a relationship to rekindling a great love, from working my butt off to lobby for a big project and actually succeeding, from flying home to be with family in difficult times, to traveling throughout Europe, Asia, and South America, it has been a whirlwind I wouldn’t trade for anything.

Now that the year is quickly coming to a close, I can actually stop to appreciate all the difficulties and stresses I’ve faced, and be grateful for the love and support I’ve never ceased to feel from my wonderful family and friends. I can also say how proud I am of myself for sticking it out, whatever “it” may have been for the given time, to stand where I do today – feeling stronger and braver than before.

And I am grateful for all the happy moments and all of the new friendships I’ve made along the way. And for the friends that stayed close no matter where in the world I was – for the greatest friends I could ever ask for spanning the globe from Paraguay to the US to the Bahamas to Germany to Singapore.

And to top it off, I am grateful to realize that that great love is the forever kind and I will get to spend the rest of my life next to a man who is as kind as he is intelligent and as loving as he is fearless, and who’s passion for exploring is as fierce as my own.

2012 may have had its challenges, and though it may have felt like I lived a lifetime in just 12 months, it has a very happy ending after all.

Me and My Fiancé!

Me and My Fiancé!