Sunday Morning Ruminations

Let’s start with a little housekeeping… if you’re interested, you can find me being active on these health-related websites:

SparkPeople as thefirespiral
MapMyRun as monicavs_in_pdx
Fitocracy as thefirespiral

You can also find me on Google+ and Twitter.

At some point I will figure out how to include this stuff in a sidebar here. Maybe even later today. But for now, there ’tis.

Yesterday’s 6 mile training walk (with some jogging) was tough. I needed to go into work afterwards, so rather than meeting with the PFit group, I mapped it out on my own. What I didn’t realize was how many relatively steep (for me, anyway) hills I included in that mileage. It kicked my butt, quite literally.

The morning was super chilly, with ice showing up on wood bridges along the way. I did a loop through the Commonwealth Lake Park in the first few miles. In a word, it was magical. Mist was spiralling up from the lake’s surface and there were many, many different birds around. Squirrels too. At one point, I felt a little like Snow White, singing through the forest. There were other walkers and joggers on the trail. Some met my eyes and smiled in a sort of morning camaraderie. I passed one woman twice, and both times she was looking down, deep in thought. I squelched an urge to interrupt her with a cheery “Good morning.” She was obviously avoiding contact with people and I respect that. I appreciate it when other people honor when I’m seeking that kind of solitude and wanted to pay it forward.

At mile 4, I had just finished a series of hills and I was feeling pretty whupped, and a little stupid for mapping so many hills into my course. Then the perfect song launched on my playlist:

That kept me energized for awhile.

I’m struggling to put into words how transformative and recharging the experience is every time I go out. Each session leads to another feeling of reconnection with the pieces of myself that have been missing for the past five years or so. Every session leads to a sense of discovery, of astonishment and joy at what I can do. And every session includes a great deal of self-talk and gentle self-redirecting towards keeping this Self Project on track, keeping the focus on discovery and health and connection, and keeping it away from sliding towards “self-improvement” or being more acceptable. I want to honor that process, but it’s so deep that it defies words.

I’m reaching out towards community, both in person and online, places to help me stay focused. It can be a double-edged sword as these communities tend to have a great deal of people who DO maintain a focus on self-improvement and/or weight loss/control. I am constantly reminding myself that it’s just as okay for that to be someone else’s journey as it is for mine to be something different. I am looking for inspiration, and framing that differently. I feel as though I’m in a constant process of opening and unfolding. Some of the things I find are light, and some are dark. I work towards valuing both equally. There is so much to learn.

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