Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Countdown: 5 days!

The weather was goreous this morning in the humidity capital of the universe. I hope that the weather in VB is like this: nice breeze, low temps, the smell of salt water from the beach. I'm not a huge fan of the beach, but I do have some pretty fond memories from when I lived on the beach! It should be a nice jog down memory lane (pun very much intended.)

My vacation officiall starts tomorrow morning at 11am. It is my first true grown-up vacation since I've been working. Gunna head over to Jax to visit my family. I fly out Friday afternoon, and should arrive at my hotel just in time to watch the premier of Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam. That's right, I'll be 30 soon, and still frequent the Disney Channel and Nickolodeon. :)

On Saturday, I'll visit the Heath and Fitness Expo that's happening next door to my hotel at the convention center. I'm quite excited about this, and hope to find some things that will aid me in being a better TKD instructor and future TKD school owner.

Sunday is the big day. The race starts at 7am. I plan to be done close to 10:30am. There will be an after party on the beach that evening.

I fly out for Jax very early in the morning, and should arrive home around 11:30am. Then begins my recovery time: a hot bath and bed!!

Huzzah! 5 more days, baby!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Countdown: 6 days

Well, the week of the race is here. After many long months of walking, and learning to run - the race week is here. I can't believe it. It seems more sureal now than before to tell people that I'm going to run in a half-marathon. Everyone I've talked to is very excited...then when I tell them it's on my birthday...that really seals the deal. Sometimes, I can't believe it myself.

On May 12, I made the declaration for all to read that I would be participating in the Virginia Beach Rock'n'Roll Half Marathon. It was the next day that my true training began, but it wasn't until 2 weeks ago, when some great friends of mine, completed 11 consecutive miles, that I really understood what I'd signed up for.

To me, who has never really been an "athlete" - this will be a great accomplishment. When I cross the finish line, it will be because of committment and pure determination, not because I have the talent, gift, or physique. I am, everyday, learning to make better choices - and sometimes I fail miserably. But I will run this race with perseverance. I will cross that finish line sweaty and smily (and probably tearful).

Thank you to all who have been there from the start, cheering and pushing me, always encouraging me - especially when I didn't think I could possibly take another step. You will be with me along the course, for sure!

Friday, August 27, 2010

I know that face...

I was on my way back to work from running an errand, and I saw a young lady out running. I thought to myself, "I know that face." For a moment, I felt as though I were looking into a mirror. Not because our physical features resembled one another because they certainly didn't: She was lean and somewhat fit. No, I felt like I was looking into a mirror because I knew that face...lips pressed, sweat beading, face red...it was determination, grit and unwaivering perseverance.

I know that face...and I love it!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Twice in a lifetime

On October 3, 1998 - I stood before a group of fellow students, family, and friends receiving one of the greatest things I could think of at 18 years old: a solid black belt with my name embroidered in gold thread. I'd seen my name affixed to many certificates with gold seals, but NONE compared to the achievement of reaching 1st degree Black belt. This moment memorialized hours of training, sacrifice, and study. For me, this was the moment of a life time.

However, after leaving for college - my training in TaekwonDo came to an end. For the next 10 years, I would secretly (for fear of looking like a goon) kick and punch just to see if I still had it in me. The desire to one day train again remained, and the love of the art never died.

In early September of 2008, my desires came true as I signed up to begin my training again. All the memories came flooding back: the smells, the feel; watching and listening. Certainly, aspirations of being healthy, flexible and strong were fueling me; however, one even stronger dream directed my decisions and focus: one day I wanted to have a school of my own; to influence children and adults alike - giving them the tools to do better, be stronger and healther, and reach further than ever.

This journey has been and will continue to be dotted with smaller goals. I liken it to a rock wall - in order to reach the top, you must place your hand and feet on strategicly placed notches, each one building on the position of your last. The same applies here.

Nearly 2 years later, on August 18, 2010 - I stood before a group of fellow students, family and friends receiving one of the greatest things I can think of at 29 years old: a solid black belt with my name embroidered in gold thread. I'd seen my name affixed to another black belt before, but NOTHING compared to reaching 1st degree black belt...again. This moment memorialized hours of training, sacrifice and study - and years of dreaming, struggling and missing that which I'd left behind.

There is nothing sweeter than reaching an intended destination. But for me, the journey has only just begun. There are many more goals to be made and reached, and I have no doubt that each one will be sweeter than the one before. "Hello Goal, it is so nice to finally meet you. Your family is very large, but I have every intention of meeting you all."

Monday, August 2, 2010

Lots Going on

It was been a VERY long time since my last entry. A lot has been going on - some good, some bad, some painful. I have had a few injury set backs, that forced me to not train...But I'm still going!

My short weekleys have allowed me to jog a mile consistantly. The humidity allows me to go no futher. I have added a leg circuit at the gym twice a week to help strengthen my knees, which has helped tremendously.

I have also been graced with a weekend walking buddy. He and I have ventured into trail walking/jogging. I've never done it before, and the first Saturday was torture on my legs, but the next day - recovery time was much faster.

This past Saturday, we hit the trails again, for my longest distance to date of 7 miles (in 2h12m). Trails are much different than the pavement. To me, it would almost be like training to run with ankle weights or in water. Really tough, but beneficial.

On August 21 or 22 - i'm planning a 15 miles walk/jog. That way I'll have a pretty good idea of what my body will do in Virginia Beach.

My overall training has been most consistant than ever (as compared to my lame attempts in my life). However, there is always room to strive, push, and challenge. At the end of the finish line - i will not be done. This will be a lifetime thing. Perhaps, I'll be fit enough to run (yes, I said run) a full 26-mile marathon. Wouldn't that be something?!?

Until then - learning to throw off all that hinders, one painful step at a time.