Friday, April 19, 2013

Hard Work Matters

If you and I are facebook friends, you might have seen this status this morning:

So today I interrupt the cleaning and beast mode workouts to bring you this quick post.

It's been... oh, I don't know... 5 kids ago since we last saw live music. So when the opportunity arose to skip folding laundry and go out with my husband and brother-in-law to check out a show where some friends of ours were playing, I gladly accepted.

Two guys we know play in a band called Unseen Masterpiece, they opened the show last night.  They are absolutely phenomenal.  You should all stop what you are doing right now and go to their website HERE and listen to some of their music.  They are that good.  And like their facebook page.  {And no, they didn't pay me off to write that. They have absolutely so no idea that I am mentioning them in this post. They most likely don't even know that this blog exists.}

Anyway, after the show I told one of the guys how good I thought they did.  I was really and truly impressed.  His response is something that I've been thinking about all day.  He said and I quote:

 "Thank you.  We work very hard at it."

I have no doubt that they did, that they do, work very hard at what they do.  It shows.  I am terrible at accepting compliments.  I never know what to say.  I get awkward and uncomfortable and usually blurt out something weird like "Happy Birthday!"  

There was something so powerful to me about that simple statement, "thank you, we work very hard at it."  It was honest and simple.  

Too often we don't want to acknowledge out loud that we've worked hard at something.  In our inability to take a compliment, we lead people to believe that we just have a knack or a "gift" for whatever it is.  For the sake of humility, we imply that we didn't bust our rear ends to get where we are {wherever that is}.  

Hard work matters.  Let's celebrate it, not hide it.  

Did you get a promotion?  Run a PR?  Lose a bunch of weight?  Face a fear?  Quit a bad habit? 

Don't be afraid to say, 

"Thank you.  I work very hard at it."   

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Running Free

I’m in kind of a weird place in my training right now. I’ve signed up for my first 100K. I’m excited. I’m committed. And I have a 24 week training plan already plugged into my calendar...that doesn’t start for two more weeks.

So what’s a runner to do in this kind of interim period? I decided that I needed to spend the weeks between committing to the race and the official start to training making sure that I have a good base. I figure, a base of 30 to 40 miles per week, each week, until my training plan starts is a good goal to have. And I’ve decided no to structure it. How I get their isn’t really all that important as long as I end my week with the appropriate number of miles. 

Of course this “run free” type of approach only goes so far because I don’t trust myself to remember how may miles I have logged. So I started logging runs on my phone again. Here’s what the first two weeks have looked like:

As you can see, consistency without a training plan is not a strong suit of mine. But I’ve had a blast! Over the last two weeks, I’ve felt only a little bit of self-inflicted pressure to get in a run if I didn’t feel like it but it was rarely enough to get me out the door or on the treadmill and if I started with the intent or running X-miles and decided to quite at mile-Y, I felt no guilt. It’s really been a great way to jump back into training. I’ve chosen to go run slow, muddy, impossible trails where I spent more time just trying to stay on my feet than actually running, had to cut it short because it was taking too long and still walked away loving this sport more than I did the day before.
After falling on a recent run!

Here’s what I’m getting at; Loving what you do is more important than consistently training hard. Sometimes what you need isn’t to work harder. Sometimes what you need isn’t to eliminate distractions so you can focus more on perfecting your craft. Sometimes what you really need is a break from the monotony of your normal routine. If you find yourself having a hard time getting out the door or dreading your next workout, it might be time to mix things up a bit. Take a day or two off. Change up the days you workout. Get someone new to your sport to join you for a light workout. Or meet up a veteran for a new challenge. Whatever it takes to restore the passion, do that and results will follow.

So, until next time, train hard, eat well and live life to the fullest!