Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Reflecting...

Interesting, the whole awe and high of completing the marathon wore off in about 24 hours. Unfortunately the soreness hasn't worn off! It's really really painful to sit down or stand up. Walking, etc is fine. It's funny how once you've reached a huge goal it's like oh, I did that and it didn't seem as big as I thought it was... all those those fears that I couldn't or doubts that I would quit are forgotten completely - was that really such a big deal? I didn't know I could do it but then I DID. I honestly can't completely even remember the heaviness in my legs or how I wanted to stop. I remember the mental aspect but can't recall the physical desire to stop. Before I ran, I held the marathon on this impossibly huge goal, that so few people aspire to or complete. Now, because I've done it, it somehow doesn't seem as big a deal. Whacky huh? Helen you just ran straight for over FIVE HOURS. I want to slap myself silly. Maybe I'm just still in shock.
But it's gotten me thinking about the nature of "goals" that are larger than we think we are, bigger than what we think we can do. If we go big enough, we feel the thrill / that edge of the ride, like mission impossible. What would my life be like if I was reaching like that, towards ongoing MEASURABLE challenges that in the end gave me the thrill of achievements and successes? Not success like pushing myself to the brink just to accomplish, but meaningful goals for me that would give beautiful texture to my committments. Then again, even in looking at my language here, the "thrill", "pushing myself"... are these counter-intuitive to my believe that we need more softness in our culture, less push and more inner resting, less outside-focused goals moving toward inner-focused experience joy? What if I could explore the fluid marriage of both?
One of the things about this marathon goal was it was so measurable - in time, in distance, in training. This all is reminding me of all of the Landmark training I've had, around commitment, creating inspiring realities, etc. Sometimes my goals are rather ethereal. And, in fact, the whole "Law of Attraction" coaches to not be highly specific about what we want. Rather, we sit in the good feelings of a "field" that is like a neighborhood of what we want. That way we are like an energetic magnet that is a larger circle for attracting what matches us. If we are too specific we are limiting that energy field.
I am *very* clear that I was honest to the bone when I said I never want to run another marathon. I am complete with that goal! But I found it really fun to be "training" for something. So now what? Half marathon at fasterspeed? A Triathalon? I did something yesterday which I've never done - I bought a season pass for skiing (at Eldora, which is the local ski mountain about 25 minutes away - I figured I would probably use that more if I wanted to go solo or for 1/2 day). The Partnership course homework between weekends this time is doing something you've never done each week. So far I have:
  1. Run a marathon!
  2. Swim in the pool back & forth across the short length of the pool (versus where the lines are marked the long length of the pool). This was a really funny experience. Because of all the swimming I've been doing for my training, I'm so trained to swim the long lengths. It honestly felt very strange.
  3. Watch a sports channel for more than a 5 second channel change (I did this last night and caught the best 20 minutes of the Rockies game where they scored 4 points which made them win - I can't believe they're going to the World Series!).

Some other things I've thought I could put on the list:

  • Iyengar Yoga class
  • Rolfing
  • Get a colonic
  • Walk around the local Porsche dealer
  • Test drive Porsches (would they let me??)
  • Ask guys out (I ALWAYS wait until they ask me out)
  • Knit something to completion (now I have two unfinished projects)
  • Take a home improvement course @ Home Depot
  • Start writing an article to be published
  • Learn to speak Italian
  • Research chemical peels
  • Consider if I were to get a tattoo, what would I choose?
  • Hire a housecleaner
  • Hire an professional organizer
  • Host a 3rd floor neighborly progressive dinner
  • Interview coaches in Boulder
  • Go to an Alanon meeting

2 comments:

  1. Consuelo8:01 AM

    Helen,

    I just read your blog and wanted to welcome you to the world of "post marathon blues". All that time of training, questioning, discovery, setting and achieving new goals with every long run....and now it's over. Although totally and measurably satisfying, it kind of sucks! Wish I would have done a better job of preparing you for this.

    What to do now though? Sounds like you've got it under control. First and foremost let your body recover. If you can, splurge and get yourself a nice massage. Also lots of rest, stretching and some easy walking, swimming or easy biking to loosen the muscles.

    I think you've also done the right thing by starting to think of new goals. The season pass you bought sounds wonderful. And that list of possible future goals is quite impressive. Pick one and go for it...but maybe not just yet. Hang in there! The blues WILL pass :)

    But most importantly, quit downplaying your accomplishment! YOU RAN A FREAKIN' MARATHON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How many people you know can say that? You ARE a super star!

    Consuelo

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  2. Hiya. I've been gone for a while but THIS IS SO GREAT! What was the first set of homework for PEX? I didn't know you wanted to learn Italian -- so when will you come practice? We go on a one-week ski trip with a bunch of grads in Arabba in March... you could come practice your Italian there! :-)

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