• sisters on a mission.

  • Three sisters. One in Virginia. One in London. One in New York. None of whom wear shorts. Ever.

  • the mission?

    Running.
    Taking delight.
    Learning Italian.
    Getting to Italy.
    Wearing shorts.
    In Italy.
    June 2011.

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graduation

Graduation comes in all sorts of ways. This week, my daughter graduated from 8th grade. Next year, she’s in high school. I can hardly believe it. It seems like just yesterday she was graduating from 5th grade, and she was  stressed about having to figure out how to use a locker with a combination when she got to middle school the next year. Now her concerns center around ensuring she maintains her unlimited text messaging privileges and if she can go on facebook. How she will change in high school — driving, dating, proms, college. I can’t wait.

I was hoping to have graduated from the C25K program this week, too. But, alas, I’m still in week 8, after repeating week 6 several times and delaying the uninterrupted running sessions I knew were coming. Though…Congratulations to Cathlin for graduating! And it sounds like you are finally truly enjoying your 30 minute runs. Look how far we’ve come! I’m still not to the enjoying running part yet. And this morning I felt like an elephant. But I trust that day will come and thanks for the inspiration, sisters. I want to graduate, too. And I need to do it before our cross-country roadtrip. I have until July 6.

I’ve also discovered that no new shoes, new song, new device, new route, time of day, energy drink can be as powerful a motivator as your Mind.  The mind-body connection is so purely connected when running. I can tell myself to quit (for so many reasons, I’m good at them) or I can tell myself to keep going. Despite tired legs, deer flies or humidity. I need to graduate from being controlled by my body and let go and love it.

“Strictly by accident, Scott stumbled upon the most advanced weapon in the ultrarunner’s aresenal: Instead of cringing from fatigue, you embrace it. You refuse to let it go. You get to know it so well you’re not afraid of it anymore.” Born to Run

Oh. And here are my new running shoes. Yeah, the mind is everything. But I’m really digging the new shoes. Mizuno Ronin 2.


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Liquid

Prosecco, Tanning Oil, Chia Seed Smoothie, and now this:

Green Foods Berry Barley Essence. I drank this.  And then I did my first 25 minute run on Tuesday.

The key word in this “energy drink” is Barley. It smelled like a field with a faint hint of strawberry to mask the grass. It’s a powder, you blend it with juice. 8 oz of it. I drank it, looking out my kitchen window at the field. The relationship between what I was consuming and what I was looking at was not lost on me. It tasted pretty good. Scott Jurek (ultramarathoner superstar, also featured in Born to Run) gave this mix to a friend of ours, he saw him speak at a race, and then he passed it on to us (he couldn’t get it down).  I guess there are a lot of health properties related to Barley, like wheatgrass. I don’t know. I just drank it.

And my run was really good. I don’t think it was related to the drink. But, it didn’t make me throw up. The 25 minute run felt like a milestone. My legs were tired afterwards. My face was flushed, like it used to look when I used to run regularly (over 10 years ago, holy buckets), and I felt good. The run wasn’t easy. I wish it had been. But the key thing — just keep going. Even if you want to stop. And your legs feel heavy. Just keep moving. The mind is a powerful thing.

Also, I just read an article about feeling creatively “dry”. The upshot of the article — you’re probably dehydrated. Drink more.

Liquids.

Today I did the second 25 minute run, Week 7 Day 1. And then I did the Tracy Anderson Workout. What? I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Maybe it IS the Barley.

I’m going to go take a shower.

CHIA. not chai, CHIA. as in CHIA pet.

Week 3 Day 2 of C25K was my best day yet. Maybe it was the beyond beautiful morning we had here in Cold Spring, NY. Maybe it was my superior playlist selection on my ipod. Maybe it was my 4 hours of sleep.

Or maybe it was the Chia Seed Smoothie I had this morning.

The black dots that look like bugs are the Chia Seeds. Gremlin drawing by my son, Jonas.

I’m still reading Born to Run. The Tarahumara runners featured in the book, the super athlete mega runners from Mexico, consume Chia seeds. In the book, McDougall speaks of Chia Fresca — a drink of water and chia and sugar and lime, I think — like it’s a miracle drink. You can find stuff about Chia seeds and their miraculous properties all over the internet now thanks to the book. I got some yesterday and put mine into a smoothie. When mixed with liquid they cause it to get a bit gel like. But really, it’s not much different from flaxseeds in texture. Its my new morning energy drink. Placebo or not. I don’t care. I had a really enjoyable run. And I’m getting more used to running lightly on the balls of my feet without requiring more effort, instead of less.

Chia seeds in my smoothie. Same thing that grows a Chia Pet.

Born to Run

I just started reading this: BORN TO RUN.  I love it.

From an interview with Christopher McDougall on Amazon.com:

Question: Born to Run explores the life and running habits of the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico’s Copper Canyon, arguably the greatest distance runners in the world. What are some of the secrets you learned from them?

Christopher McDougall: The key secret hit me like a thunderbolt. It was so simple, yet such a jolt. It was this: everything I’d been taught about running was wrong. We treat running in the modern world the same way we treat childbirth—it’s going to hurt, and requires special exercises and equipment, and the best you can hope for is to get it over with quickly with minimal damage.

Then I meet the Tarahumara, and they’re having a blast. They remember what it’s like to love running, and it lets them blaze through the canyons like dolphins rocketing through waves. For them, running isn’t work. It isn’t a punishment for eating. It’s fine art, like it was for our ancestors. Way before we were scratching pictures on caves or beating rhythms on hollow trees, we were perfecting the art of combining our breath and mind and muscles into fluid self-propulsion over wild terrain. And when our ancestors finally did make their first cave paintings, what were the first designs? A downward slash, lightning bolts through the bottom and middle—behold, the Running Man.

The Tarahumara have a saying: “Children run before they can walk.” Watch any four-year-old—they do everything at full speed, and it’s all about fun. That’s the most important thing I picked up from my time in the Copper Canyons, the understanding that running can be fast and fun and spontaneous, and when it is, you feel like you can go forever. But all of that begins with your feet. Strange as it sounds, the Tarahumara taught me to change my relationship with the ground. Instead of hammering down on my heels, the way I’d been taught all my life, I learned to run lightly and gently on the balls of my feet. The day I mastered it was the last day I was ever injured. (http://www.amazon.com/Born-Run-Hidden-Superathletes-Greatest/dp/0307266303)

Today. I finished Week 2. I concentrated solely on running lightly and gently on the balls of my feet. It wasn’t even close to fine art, but it was really nice.