Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Finding It

I have had many people ask me where I get my motivation from.  I do not wake up everyday salivating at the thought of a workout.  I have days where I don't feel like walking, running, or biking.  I have days when my body is sore, my feet hurt, and I really can't stomach the heat, humidity, or whatever Mother Nature is dishing out.  When I can't muster up the motivation to lace up my shoes I start looking for inspiration.

Inspiration is all around us, you just have to look for it.  For instance, while mountain biking today I saw a large man, pushing 400 pounds easy running shirtless straight for me.  Once I took it all in and realized he was not a bear I couldn't help but smile.  He is a sight I will not soon forget.  He was out running, yes running, down the trail.  He was out there trying, he was sweating, he was working.  I saw him in two separate areas several miles from each other which lead me to figure he ran at least six miles.  Quite impressive for a fella his size.

  I will never forget what it felt like to start.  It was extremely hard, I am not going to lie.  Just putting one foot in front of the other some days was so difficult. I remember thinking "I have to do this for the rest of my life, UGH"  How in the world am I going to make this happen? Simply, one day at a time.

I saw another inspiration while driving.  She was about 5 ft 8 and 300 pounds, trudging down the sidewalk wearing a backpack.  She had ear buds in and a fierce 'eye of the tiger' look about her. I have had that exact look several times myself so I recognize it immediately.  I know her knees must have been killing her with nearly every step, especially since she was wearing extra weight on her back.  My knees and feet hurt so bad when I first started pounding the pavement.  (I started running on the grass by the side of the sidewalk  and the problem worked itself out.  I now run on the pavement with no issues)
There were days I felt like I couldn't run another step so I walked.

I look for inspiration everywhere I go.  I seek out some thing or someone to fuel my next workout.  I really don't have to look far since I am constantly inspired by humans living in my own household.  My son,  age 26 is training for the 2016 Paralympics.  He had both his legs amputated above the knee when he was a baby, very simply...someone forgot to install his tibia bones while he was growing in my belly.  He does not have a choice when he decides which  set of legs to wear for the day.  He picks them out and gets on with his day. I am also proud he is a personal trainer teaching people how to take care of themselves.  He does not let anyone or anything get in the way of his dreams. I admire him greatly and am inspired by him daily.

I am inspired by my hubby who enjoys LONG bike rides and keeps himself in shape in order to participate in races or play hard on the weekends.   I am also very inspired by my eight year old daughter.  I love watching her get strong at gymnastics and while riding her bike. I am in awe of the fact she does talent shows and is not afraid to get up in front of 100's of peers and parents.

Inspiration is everywhere. Don't stress over finding it.  Sometimes it just comes to you... at the store, driving, where you least expect it.  Keep your eyes and ears open.  Once you find it hold on to it.  Use it to your advantage and find out who you really are.  You won't be disappointed.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

I Am A Quitter

This volunteer sunflower opened all the way this morning

Ten years ago I rolled out of bed and lit one of many Marlboro Reds I would have for the day.  I have been a smoker since I could sneak them out of my moms purse.  I started buying my own at age 16.  I continued to smoke until I was 19, quit for about five years and found myself back at it again.

I finally QUIT on July 1st, 2005 and I couldn't be happier.  Eight months later I gave birth to a beautiful little girl, she has never seen her mother smoke. It's been nine years so I decided to do a celebratory bike ride, I had a sitter for about three hours.

Blue skies 

I pedaled casually as it was ninety degrees and very humid.  This was going to be a moderate pace but a fun ride.  I smiled and said hello to everyone I saw, that was a lot of people on a busy Tuesday morning in Creve Coeur.  I rode around the beautiful lake a couple times and made a promise to come back and rent a stand up paddle board.  They rent them for $10 an hour.  Too cool!

Found a cake

I left the house without my IPod on purpose so I could chill out and reconnect in peace.  It was a good choice.  I spent my last hour on the Katy Trail.  That was a good choice too, the views from it are just beautiful.

Quitting smoking has been was one of the smartest choices I have ever made for myself.  It opened a whole new world to me with new, like-minded friends and helped lay the groundwork for a healthy lifestyle.

There is only one thing, scratch that two things that I regret... I regret not quitting sooner and saving the $$ in a jar.  When I quit cigarettes cost about $3 a pack.  At roughly 370 packs a year for 9 years I would have saved over $10,000 dollars.  Adjusting over $2 for todays prices would have netted much more.  At $5 a pack it cost nearly $2,000 to smoke a pack a day.  Crazy.