Sunday, June 7, 2009

My visit with an old friend today....

I had one of those runs I remember from years past when I entered into that zone. I had gone back and forth all day on whether I would run or not making up several excuses if I had chosen not to.
I succumbed to them all and headed out from my house around 7:00pm. It was still quite warm, maybe up in the 80's but I did take a sports drink with me.
I started off the run with Afro Celts Sound System cd called "Anatomic" , good music to run to and allow your mind to wander.

It felt good out there running and noticed people along the way waving which is always a boost.I passed people walking on the course and was greeted with a smile and encouragement. My first milestone was at the 2 mile mark where my last run on this course began the mental and physical breakdown.

It did not happen today, at that point I took off my shirt and started drinking Gatorade, I was beginning to feel the flow.
I had some good moments of thought, about how my friend Wes and I use to run together, I talked with him some. I thought of my dad as well and talked with him as well.

Before I knew it I was 4 miles in and knew I was not going to stop until I reached 6 miles.

It felt really good and I even felt strong enough the last mile to pick up the pace.

It has been MANY years since I have run this far without walking, without pain and without doubts.

I so needed it for mental and physical reasons. It was nice to be back in that zone and I equate it to meeting up with an old friend and picking up the conversation like there was never a pause.

I now have the mental and physical validation I was seeking and hope this is the foundation and starting point of my second foray into running.

I finished up overjoyed, confident and emotionally uplifted.

Funny how when you run your problems and concerns never want to join, I like that.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Wes, running trails and I

"Let's go run the trails at Kennesaw Mountain!" Wes said to me. We had been training on pavement for a long time, all around Marietta, up Hwy 41, Franklin Road and the Marietta loop. I was a bit reluctant because trails meant strange areas, critters, the unknown.

I agreed and we met at the Visitors Center at Kennesaw Mountain and agreed to run a 6 mile loop. "Take it easy it is not the same as running on pavement" Wes said.

We took off running and within the first 10 yards I tripped and fell literally on my face, embarrassed as well as shocked I got up and wiped myself off, I had abrasions and blood on my hands and knees. "Do you want to quit?" Wes asked me as we laughed it off as we did most things.

"No way!", I said trying to keep my pride intact.

"The thing about trails is that you can enjoy the great scenery but know there are a lot of bumps, rocks, tree limbs etc to get in your way, you will learn to run comfortably with an anticipatory gait which will allow you to enjoy the course." he remarked so we took off for one of many runs through the 18 mile loop of trails. Most of the time we did not even talk, we just ran and took in the historical moments of what actually went on there during the Civil War.

There are still the war trenches and cannons through the run but what is most memorable was the silence and beauty of it all.

I had no idea what lessons I was learning about life on those trails during that time. I was still young and life was a simple paved road with everything laid out plainly in site; little did know.

I ran those same trails today and it has been over 15 years or more since I have run that course. It is a brutal, unforgiven course of long and short hills but what really takes my breath away is not so much the hills but the silence, the beauty and memories of running there with Wes many years ago.

It is still a tough course and many times I wanted to quit but I stayed focused, I enjoyed the scenery and it brought back so many memories. At one point I saw a family of deer crossing the trail ahead of me.

Wes was not with me physically but I so felt his presence as I took my time avoiding the obstacles that could trip me up.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Music that molds me....

I think music is one thing everyone has in common despite the different genres that are out there.
I was very fortunate to have exposure to a lot of different types of music growing up whether it was my parent's, my older sister, and friends.
Earlier in life it was more entertaining, the beat, dancing, spinning in circles in our living room until I was dizzy.
As I reached my teens it took on many other meanings, and lyrics were the lure from being "infactuated" with some girl or the defining of a so call heart break through a certain song wallowing in the perceived pain.

I had the pleasure of spending one of my many years in music in choir where Mr. Jackson, our choral director who made us understand, dissect and feel the meaning in the lyrics and melody. He exposed us to all types and opened up my eyes to the poetic and melodic direction.

It is quite a warming experience for me now after many, many years how much music played a part in defining my character and the lens of how I view life.
I love listening to songs of my youth and realizing that I have reached a point in my life where the meaning of certain lyrics are prevalent in my life today.

Of course my parents gave me the firm foundation and sense of values, music allowed me to expand on that solid foundation in many different ways.

As I go back and experience the music of the past I am blessed that I can look back and smile knowing I understand where the music has lead me to and helped be the person I am today.

The learning and growing never ends, the feelings never cease but expand.