Archive for February, 2007

Carry On

February 25, 2007

img_1017.JPGimg_1017.JPGI’m an NPR addict. This morning I was listening to an interview with Michael Apted who created the series 7 Up which follows a group of British children over time. They start at age 7 and come back to revisit these folks every 7 years. This year they are 49. I haven’t seen it but plan to look for it on Netflix. Apted talked about how many key personality traits of these people were visible at age 7 and haven’t changed dramatically since. The basics of who they are were there from an early age. As a Mom of a 6 year old this interested me since I really love so many of Eden’s qualities now and I’m hopeful that her curiosity, empathy and kindness remain in the forefront of who she is forever.

Apted mentioned too how the surprising thing about this series is watching how these folks react to the uncontrollable “curveballs” that come at them in life. No one could predict these things (traumas, losses, etc.) and the reactions people have are variable. I think about this issue a lot as I feel like our family has had so many of these “curveballs”. First, our second daughter Meg was born in 2003 with microcephaly and now is very developmentally delayed and has multiple special needs. This isn’t what we expected or wanted of course but we’ve “carried on” as a family and still enjoy our time together without reservations or hesitations. Then, there was Dave’s lymphoma diagnosis in June 2006 and it was if suddenly our family, which had reinflated almost to “normal” again, was pricked with a pitchfork and deflated once more.

This triathlon is about “carrying on”. It’s about living as normal as you can when life is not giving you “normal” anymore. I read somewhere that a great sign of good mental health is flexibility – not the physical kind but the personal kind. Taking the blows life gives you and going on. We did not choose these unfortunate events but we can, to some degree, choose how to respond to them. I want to enjoy our family life, enjoy my daughters, my husband and the time that we all have together. No one knows what is coming next. I can be sad and upset about all this, but I cannot let it stop me from appreciating and enjoying the time we have. So I will swim, bike and run and feel good about it and go home and hug my family.

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One Week Down

February 18, 2007

First week down. It was a tough one in general because of an exhausting bad cold and a tight time schedule, but I accomplished some workouts anyway and feel pretty good about things. I have my first aches and pains – a little foot pain and knee pain that responds well to motrin so far but may be the first sign of things to come. Surprisingly I find that my enthusiasm at this stage has overcome my lack of time and fitness and I’m still getting up and out there to work out. This week consisted of 3 runs for a total of 8 miles and about 2.5 hours of biking. This is very little compared to where I’ll need to be in June but it’s a good start.

Lots of people so far have seemed fairly shocked that I wanted to do this or have remarked that “I didn’t know you were such an athlete”. Well, luckily, being an athlete is not a prerequisite because I am no such thing. The only sport I’ve even slightly excelled in was swimming and that was in high school. Luckily, one does not forget how to swim and that will come in handy in June. For most of my early 20s my greatest athletic feat was bar golf, but by residency I discovered that exercise was good stress relief and I began doing a lot of spin classes for general exercise. I still don’t even own a road bike (one is on its way soon any day now though) and, although I have done it on and off for years, I actually hate running. I seem to develop pain in some part of my body whenever I try to run and that is probably my biggest fear of this triathlon – that damn run at the end. However what I lack in athleticism I make up for in pure stubbornness and I believe that will help me make it through this thing in the end.

I started this second training week off well today with a “brick” workout of almost an hour on the bike followed directly by a 3 mile run.  One reason they call it a “brick” workout is because that’s how your legs feel when you get off a bike and try to run. After about 5 minutes of running though my legs began to feel like normal again and I think I even stopped scowling and groaning (although I’m not sure about that one). This is about half the distance of what I will have to do in June which is certainly frightening but I have 4 months to get there. Oh yes, and there is that little complication of the swim at the beginning of the race. We’ll think about that next week.

It’s cold at 7am in February

February 11, 2007

img_1099.JPGimg_1099.JPGI’m not a morning person and especially not a morning exerciser but I was out there in RTP today running at 7am. I felt it was the least I could do given that I’ve had so much positive response and even a LOT of donations already. Thanks guys!! It made the big workout today so much easier to know lots of folks were behind me. I actually felt pretty good running even at 7am in 20 something degrees, and I left excited about the road ahead. Certainly, I’m less nervous because I met some folks on the “team” and they seem nice. There are only 9 of us (8 women) doing the Phili triathlon with this TNT chapter . We ran with the marathon group which is much larger, but we only did less than half of their five miles. Then, we had planned to go biking after our run but it was simply too cold (even for our coach!) so I went to the gym and did a spin class instead. By 9am I felt like half the day should be over but of course it was just starting.. diapers, feeding, shopping, and laundry awaits.

On a different note Dave and Eden went to the Father/Daughter Valentine dance tonite and they were just so incredibly cute. Eden was so excited that she was getting a corsage (although I had to explain what the word corsage meant- she thought it was some sort of jacket you wear ). They even went out to dinner at the Carolina Club before the dance. If I can figure out how to post a picture I will. I couldn’t help but think that someday some frightening teenage boy will be driving her off on Saturday nights but for now I’ll enjoy this sweet innocent time.

Day 1

February 8, 2007

I did it. I signed up. I held onto the registration form for days and changed my mind a hundred times but it’s a done deal now. I am all set to start training for an Olympic distance triathlon that will happen in Philadelphia on June 24. I’m scared to death, but excited too. To celebrate I went running.  Good thing I didn’t do that before I turned in the form because my sore knees might have won over and I’d have never signed up.

Why am I doing such a crazy thing? Well, because it’s for the right reasons. Team in Training is an organization that helps folks train for these events and raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma society. Since Dave has lymphoma this opportunity seemed to be calling my name. What a great way for me to feel I’m “doing something” about this and since exercise is my best anti-depressant hopefully I’ll keep myself mentally and physically healthy in the process. This blog is where I will keep details about how the training is going, what’s happening with the fundraising, and maybe get support here and there I hope.

So, the first step is done. On to the next 10 million more..