September 2006 Archives

MySpace is turning out to be interesting...in addition to finding my best friend from age 11ish to 13ish, I have found and connected with a few friends and acquaintances from high school, one of whom is just starting her journey to a healthier lifestyle. I encourage you to go see TigerLilly and offer support and encouragement while she learns how to make healthier changes to her lifestyle.

The only preparation I am doing for Sunday's race is to make sure I'm hydrating. This race caught me off-guard; I'm definitely not trained, and I am afraid I'll come in even slower than last year, when it was just my second race ever. I'm trying to remind myself that it's not about the time I do it in. It's about getting out there and doing it!

I'm looking foward to more running in October, and definitely looking forward to training for OP50 this winter. Running will bring my energy back, bring my focus back, bring clarity into my life. Running releases tensions, gets my blood pumping, reminds me that I am alive. I am moving. I exist and love and smile and cry and keep moving through the low points and fly through the high points. Running pulls me out of my "why does it have to hurt so much to be true to myself?!" melancholy and directs me to the joy in life. Mmm, much better. Now I'm ready for tomorrow's race!
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I've been invited to a pre-race carbo-loading dinner at Mike and Kiera's tonight...should be fun!
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Update: 24 whopping days ago, Jess tagged me. I'm finally getting around to it!
1. ONE BOOK THAT CHANGED MY LIFE: Waking the Tiger by Dr. Peter A Levine
2. ONE BOOK THAT I HAVE READ MORE THAN ONCE: Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follat
3. ONE BOOK I WOULD WANT ON A DESERTED ISLAND: Welcome to Temptation by Jenny Crusie
4. ONE BOOK THAT MADE ME LAUGH: Getting Rid of Bradley by Jenny Crusie
5. ONE BOOK THAT MADE ME CRY: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
6. ONE BOOK THAT I WISH I HAD WRITTEN: the one that's still inside me, waiting to come out...
7. ONE BOOK I WISH HAD NEVER BEEN WRITTEN: too many to name
8. ONE BOOK I AM CURRENTLY READING: None...just reading magazines currently. Books take too much time and energy right now.
9. ONE BOOK I HAVE BEEN MEANING TO READ: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
10. WHO'S NEXT? TigerLilly & Brad

Chocolate Cake

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It's like there's a giant buffet set out in front of you. Tantalizing foods as far as the eye can see; so many choices. There's vibrant fruit in every hue of the rainbow, vegetables glistening in an array of sauces and butter and oil, grilled corn on the cob, charred meat, fried tofu - and desserts. Oh! The desserts! Mr. Polka-Dotted Bathtub as chocolate cake. Deep, dark, buttery, rich, indulgent, decadent, smooth, melt-in-your-mouth chocolate cake, just waiting for you. You take a bite and the exquisite flavor fills yours senses, blocking out any other sensations you may be feeling. It slides down your throat as you emit a moan. Oh, the chocolate cake.

It's so tempting. But you wake up the next morning, and your stomach is queasy, too full of rich ingredients. You approach the buffet again, and again you are drawn to the chocolate cake. You try to resist. You put your foot down. You won't do it! But you can't stop yourself from reaching for it, indulging in it, fully submerging your senses in it.

You spend the next few days wandering around in a daze, agonizing over when you taste the chocolate cake again. Your friends remind you that you can't live on chocolate cake alone; it's unhealthy. It's loaded with ingredients that clog your arteries, hurt your digestive system and cause you stomach upset. You know that. You are fully aware of that. But the next time you approach the buffet, you only have eyes for the chocolate cake.

No! Don't do it! Don't reach for it! You've decided you will be strong. You tell that chocolate cake you won't partake! You can't! It'll hurt too much in the morning!

You stay strong for three days. Three days of no chocolate cake. Then you reach out, inhale deeply and savor the idea of chocolate cake. You pick up the plate, and spend time just admiring the glistening frosting. Your mouth waters, your tummy quivers, your brain shuts out everything else. You are focused on that chocolate cake.

But you put it back down and go home and lay on your bed. You are wishing you had the cake so much you reach for your phone and send a text: "I am wishing you were at my door. I'd let you in tonight, you know. I'd so let you in." But the chocolate cake stays put.

The next morning, you wake up early, grateful that you didn't eat the chocolate cake, ready to get up and go to the gym and take care of yourself. Your tummy is balanced, your body is strong, your mind is at peace. You have renewed determination to not let your body overcome your mind and tempt you to dive into the chocolate cake.

Besides, there's a cute runner who has caught your eye...what will he turn out to be on the buffet?

Destiny

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AngiePaki1mile

I went to the gym yesterday morning, finally. I haven't been fitting much exercise in over the last few weeks. But I have moved into my own space, a tiny studio next to a market/bakery and just a few short minutes from Johnny's.

I finally got back out for an early morning run with Paki this morning. It's been at least a month, if not longer, and I think we've only had a handful of runs since before June 10 (Sugar & Spice 50k) and my gallbladder surgery. I live farther away now, and I don't think we'll be doing any more early morning runs - there's just not enough time to drive all the way to her house, run, drive all the way back, shower and drive to work! But we will start lunchtime runs soon.

It was a cool morning and the run was great. I've missed my weekly conversations with Paki! Sunday marks the one-year anniversary of our first race together. Neither of us feel prepared for it, but we're going to run it anyway.

AngiePakiFinishLine

I had so much to discuss with her, I think I dominated the conversation! There's nothing like working through things during a run.

Once the sun had risen and warmed our backs, with the wind whipping through our hair as we dodged leftover peices of debris from the summer's flooding, Paki mentioned destiny and balance. My flesh raised in goosebumps as we discussed how, when we first started running, I was in a 10-year-long marriage and offered tidbits of advice as she, a never-married, single independent woman, freaked out over a developing relationship...and now she is engaged to that man and offering me tidbits of advice as I am becoming a single independent woman. Each other's strengths have complemented each other's weaknesses, and together, we've supported each other and tuned in to listen to our internal voices to follow our paths of happiness, becoming even stronger women in the process - mentally and physically. I am so grateful to have her in my life, grateful for the support and lessons she's taught me over the last year and a half. I'm excited to run (okay, walk, I'm sure - parts anyway!) the race with her on Sunday.

AngiePakiStartingLine

PS Never let it be said I won't admit it when I'm wrong. I was wrong about Mr. Polka-Dotted Bathtub: I did hear from him; I'm not too Angie for him. I threw myself in a pity party in that last post, didn't I! :) Where are we going? No clue. Friends? More? The story is still being written.

PPS Olga pointed me in Craig's direction regarding a recent post about fear and change. Although my personal philosophy does not include faith in a creator, as Craig's does, this post still resonated with me and what I've been going through. I've referred to taking "leaps of faith" in the last year. To me, faith is trusting that I will be okay, no matter what happens. That is the single biggest lesson I have learned in the last year: how to trust myself that I will be okay, no matter what. I've learned how to step outside my box, step outside convention, step outside other people's thoughts, actions or judgments, to do what I need to do to maintain integrity in my life. Learning that if I make a "mistake" or take action in a way that nets me less-than-desirable consequences, there's nothing wrong with that! So, I won't do that again :) I'll choose differently next time. Life is one great big giant experiment, and sometimes that means the choices I make may blow up in my face, and other times, it means the choices I make may save humanity (or at least, me).

Mr. Polka-Dotted Bathtub

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(Before I begin, let me just say that I've already discussed everything in this post with Johnny, who I have discovered can still be my best friend, even if he's developing a relationship with someone else. Let me also say that there's no possible way I can keep my random babblings away from this blog. I am so much more than running.)

His touch is exquisite; his body is decadent. He is long and lean, with thick wavy gray hair - he is 15 years my senior - and intriguing planes and angles to his face. He lives downtown in a yellow house filled with character - and clothing. His clothing spills everywhere. His living room is filled with instruments - guitars, drums - and his bike. His backyard is a kid's paradise: a treehouse painted with flowers, a giant slide, trees, chickens. His bathtub is pink with blue polka-dots. I loved the polka-dots. I laughed at being drawn to yet another trad-climbing, telemark-skiing, nature-loving man. At least he isn't a runner (anymore); he is a cyclist and swimmer.

I want to be with someone who is as captivated with me as I am with them. Mr. Polka-Dotted Bathtub very clearly stated at the beginning of our relationship - such as it was - he was emotionally unavailable. Ms. Peace Corps had his heart. It will be another 14 months before she returns to the states. I pursued Mr. Polka-Dotted Bathtub anyway. How great it would be, I thought, to be involved with an emotionally unavailable person. I wouldn't have to worry about losing myself in someone again. I wouldn't have to worry about whether this was just a rebound thing or not. How perfect that I found this man at this time in my life.

And on Saturday night at a fun gig his band was playing at a funky gallery, after the third time he said something about the limited time of our relationship, I started thinking. What fun is it to be involved with someone when you already know the outcome? I already know - he's going to choose Ms. Peace Corps. There's no fun there, it's so oppressive. No joy! There's no chance, not even a possibility of something more with him. I don't even know if I want something more with him. But to not have even the possibility of discovering more - that keeps tripping me up. I want to explore every facet of his mind, not just his body. I want him to want to explore every facet of my mind (and my body).

And he doesn't. He doesn't want to fall for me. He wants to wait for Ms. Peace Corps.

I drove to his house yesterday, his charming, cluttered house full of color and life and clothes and polka-dots. I sat on his rose-covered couch next to his old and gnarled cat and I told him I can't do this. I can't continue this. He understood. He looked at me, the planes and angles of his beautiful face looking so sad. He told me how one of his closest friends says she wants to be with someone who will fight for her. I smiled, completely understanding. And then I walked out. As I left, he called after me, "I'll wait for you to contact me." I turned and looked at him. And he said, "Or maybe, if I get impatient, I'll contact you." I replied, "Maybe I"ll wait for that," closed the red gate to his overgrown front yard, and walked to my car.

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I know he won't contact me. I won't hear from him. I'm afraid I'm too much, too overwhelming, too honest (no mystery), too...Angie...for him to want me. It's hard for me right now. I'm no one's primary interest - Johnny has Ms. Mommy Virgo, Ash has Johnny (his way of grieving is to cling to Johnny. He says he loves his daddy a lot and he loves his mommy a little. While I understand where that's coming from, it still hurts), Mr. Polka-Dotted Bathtub has Ms. Peace Corps. So much of my life has revolved around what other people think of me, or where I rank in their lives. I need to be my primary interest right now. Johnny's story is his; what he does with his life is his business. Mr. Polka-Dotted Bathtub's story is his; if he chooses to wait another 14 months for someone who might not come to Tucson anyway, then that's his choice, his life, his story.

What will my story be?

I'm glad I registered for OP before it sold out. I will spend this winter getting to know me, listening to my body, fueling and hydrating and moving in a healthy way. Johnny was awesome "crew" for me yesterday as I lay sobbing, grieving, on my bed. "Get up, Angie, keep moving. You are in an aid station; let me just get you some water. Do you need food? Don't stop here. Don't stop. Get up and get moving. Keep putting one foot in front of the other. You can do it."

I can do it.

I'm Published!!!!

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Page 42 of September's ultraRUNNING magazine! I wrote an article about my experience at Sugar & Spice this past June and submitted it. I didn't tell anyone (do you know how hard that was???) because I wanted to wait and see if they really were going to use it. And they did. Yay!!!!!!

(If you don't subscribe to ultraRUNNING a) you should, and b) e-mail me (view my profile to get my e-mail address) and I'll send you a copy of the article.)

On another awesome note, I registered for OP50 this morning, woo hoo!!!!!

In the paper!

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Profiled in today's Tucson Citizen Body Plus!

On a training note, registration for OP50 opens tomorrow, yay! I didn't run much this last week, with a crazy work schedule and moving into my new place, but this week, I am ready to get back into things. I had a good run yesterday morning with Kiera, and a nice sunset hike last night. Fall has definitely arrived in Tucson, and I am glad to be enjoying it.

Eight years after my first summit attempt, where I turned back less than a mile from the top, I returned to Mt. Wrightson. This time, I made it.

It was the kick-off run for the Tucson Trail Runners, which meant over 20 people on and around the mountain. I had fun cruising on up, meeting Mer, Tom and a few others. Johnny did it with Ash on his back (close to 60 lbs!), and had a brief scare when he fell off the slippery trail. No one was hurt, thank goodness. I motored on up, hung out for a bit at the top, then started to head down when Johnny and Ash arrived. So I stayed. We picnicked and watched the fog form into clouds before heading back down.

All the fog made the trail slippery, and it was my turn to fall on the way down. I have a gigantic bruise on my ass! But I'm fine. The trail was green, there were creeks flowing down the mountainside, and I really enjoyed the top mile - where the trail is cut into the cliff face. I had fun talking with Joyce (the woman who helped me with my strength training program) for awhile.

Just as I made it back down, the skies opened and it poured rain! Perfect timing.

I'm so sore now, but it was definitely worth it.

MySpace

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I've joined the masses...

Come on over and visit! (I think this is where my random ramblings about the journey I am beginning will be expressed...saving the blog for my training...)

PS had a great workout this morning at the gym, and will be meeting a photographer this evening for the Tucson Citizen - they are profiling me for their "How I Did It" column in the Body Plus section published on Mondays!

Bear Canyon Re-Opened!

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Kiera and I headed out for a great 8-mile run up to Seven Falls in Bear Canyon this morning. It was her longest run since her last HM in January of 2004. It also took us about as long as her last HM - 2:35! For a whopping 8 miles. The lower trail was pretty trashed from the floods, and we had to keep stopping at each creek crossing to find the trail on the opposite side of the creek. Plus the rock hopping, rattlesnake, pictures for other hikers and gel mess all contributed to the slower time. (Yes, gel mess. As we left the falls, I took a hit out of the flask and deposited the flask back in the holder, apparently without closing it. Two minutes later, my right thigh was a MESS. I turned around and went back to the pools to wash it off. Meanwhile, Kiera was using every ounce of willpower to not wrestle a resting hiker for her Pringles.) But what a fantastic run. It felt great to be outside, running through the desert forest, next to a stream. We kept wishing we had a camera to capture the beaty in the greenery, rockslides, morning glories and the rest of the flowers. Kiera, additional thoughts?

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I'm not sure about OP50 in March. I don't know that I have it in me to train for a 50-miler right now. Shorter distances for sure - 50ks, etc. But 50 miles is a long distance, and I know I will want to focus my energy on other things this winter. Registration doesn't open for a couple weeks, so I have some time to decide.

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angie's essence...as explored by trail running (and mixed-media art)

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This page is an archive of entries from September 2006 listed from newest to oldest.

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