Monday, April 26, 2010

Finding Out What I'm Made Of

Did you know salt and straw look the same under a microscope?? (No, not really....)

Yes, it's true!!  (Just an analogy, or hyperbole, or metaphor...hhmmm, maybe a combination??.)

See, I've been trying to figure out what it is I'm made of....and it's come down to these two things-salt and straw-but I can't quite make out which it is.  I used to believe it was certainly straw ("who's afraid of the big, bad wolf....").  I took the easy way.  I would quit long before I made good on goals; I couldn't seem to stay married; I wouldn't exercise (for any real extended period of time-not in a "session", but as in longevity); I whined; I complained about every single little ache and pain or discomfort; hard work required some kind of external payment that made all the hard work "worth it".  In order for me to work hard, there had to be something outside of myself to show for the hard work, something I could point to and proclaim, "THAT'S why I'm doing/did what I'm doing/did." (ie:  weight loss/good looking body for -short term- exercise, cash money or something to show for my efforts for physical labor, at-a-girls for long hours on the job...something other people would agree make hard work mean something)

At some point along the way (probably about the time I realized I could actually stay married when I finally made the right choice in husbands to fit with who I am as a person), I started thinking maybe there's something more to me than just straw.  Maybe there is some "salt" in there after all, I just have to find it.  That's when I made the CRAZY bold decision to run a marathon.  Yes, I'm sure there were other, much easier, ways to determine what I'm made of, but that's the way I chose, for better or worse, through sickness and health (hopefully NOT until death do us part). 

Now, I'm sure some people might argue that running a marathon really does have an external payment-crossing over a finish line.  I think those people must not have run a marathon before--or if they have, they didn't have as hard of a time with training as I'm having.  I believe (please correct me if I'm wrong) marathoners would say the "payoff" is completely (or at the very least, mostly) internal. 
I'm not gaining any external pay off for this goal I'm trying to get to that I can see right now.  I have friends who keep asking me WHY??, I have such undeniable pain I basically limp a good bit of time from one run all the way to about the quarter or half mile marker of the next one.  I'm certainly NOT losing any weight.  I don't feel like I'm getting any faster.

****funny story break****

I was out at the cross-country running park the other day enduring enjoying a painful nice run in the "safe woods"*, when I spotted a strange looking fellow out on the trail.  I'm sure he was just out for a stroll, but the thought crossed my mind that if that man suddenly started chasing me for nefarious purposes, I would surely not be able to out-run him (especially after going down, then back up that ridiculously steep hill).  I almost cried out of the sadness of it all.  Oh, wait, this was supposed to be a funny story, wasn't it??  Well, I guess you could say I lied.  But, I'm not going to edit it because since the poor guy obviously didn't chase me for nefarious purposes, it is a funny story.  I have to laugh at the thought or never run alone again.

****I digress....****

Other runners understand it, even if no one else gets why it is I keep on trying....why it is I don't want to give up....why it is I'm desperately seeking an answer for this pain in my calf that doesn't include NOT running....why it is I believe running "proves" I'm worth my salt.

Thanks for stopping in, come again soon!


  1. You inspire me Dana, you really do. You are an amazing woman and will do whatever you set your mind to!

  2. I have to echo inspire me as well. though I am still sitting on my couch, when I read your blog, I know that one day I will run. I have always had the desire. I have tried many times and given up. However, someday, it's going to happen. I'm going to do it. (And when I do, I'm going to blog and email you about it!!!)


Don't hold back, tell it like it is....