15 Things Running Has Taught Me

IMG_4473It’s been nearly two years since I ventured into the world of running, but only recently that I’ve started to think of myself as a runner. In this time, I have learned:

1. If you look cute when you leave the house, great. If you look just as cute when you get home, you’re doing it wrong. 

2. Sweat is fat crying. Sweat hard, sweat often.

3. Listen to your body. Not that little voice in your head that tells you to slow down, or go home. Listen to your breath, FEEL your heartbeat. Fancy heart rate monitors are great, they’re also expensive and unnecessary. 

4. In your playlist, no song is stupid if it keeps you moving.

5. It’s okay to walk.

6. Learn to block out distractions. 

7. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Pain =Progress 

8. Don’t ever smell any of your clothing after a run. Trust me.

9. Don’t carry water or Gatorade if you’re not going to drink it.

10. Not everyone appreciates my rendition of “Sexy and I Know it,” especially at 5am.

11. Everything bounces and wiggles. E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G. Get used to it.

12. Long sleeves make great tissues.

13. Protein. Protein. Protein.

14. Good form is better than being fast.

15. If you’re seeking perfection, you’ve picked the wrong sport. There will always be someone stronger and faster. Compete against yourself, not those around you. 

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I am angry, and you should be to.
Someone WILLFULLY decided to turn what was supposed to be a triumphant day in an athlete’s life into tragedy.
This is unacceptable.
The thought of coming home from a race short a hand, a foot, or half a face, is unbelievable and heartbreaking.
As a member of the running community, and future Boston hopeful, I am overwhelmed with emotion.

Runners are resilient, stubborn, and go forth without fear. I don’t believe the events of today will hurt the prestigious Boston Marathon’s reputation, and I hope that today’s participants won’t be deterred from lacing up their running shoes.

Tonight, I’m sending my thoughts, prayers, and positive energy to the runners, spectators, volunteers, friends and families of the Boston Marathon. I may not be with you all in person but I am with you, running shoes laced, in heart and spirit.

Peace & Love,
Mandixoxox

Helpful Links:

Google Person Finder
http://google.org/personfinder/2013-boston-explosions/

Latest from Boston:
http://www.bloomberg.com/live-stream/

Photos (WARNING graphic content)
http://imgur.com/gallery/DIYEg

 

5am

Last night, I went to bed early like the responsible adult I am (I work morning shifts, and have come to value a decent night’s sleep), and was awoken by a series of important (albeit annoying) text messages at the ungodly hour of 11pm.

I couldn’t get back to sleep; I tossed and turned, turned and tossed.

An earlier version of me would have used this poor nights sleep as an acceptable reason to skip the 5am workout I have meticulously planned for this morning. Instead, I allowed myself to ‘snooze’ for 15 minutes before picking myself up out of bed (dragging) and “reporting for duty.”

There are no shortcuts, no excuses. No one’s going to do it for me. In fact, no one cares whether I workout or sleep in.

It’s all on me.

20130227-051956.jpg

Peace and Love,
Mandixoxox

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 2,000 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 3 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Holiday Cards

As I start getting my small household ready for the holiday season (or as the overly organized version of me refers to it: Listmas!), I thought I would do something a little different this year in the way of holiday cards. A friend of mine recently made me aware of an address where you can send any Canadian Forces member a little holiday cheer (address will be posted below), and I thought I might like to do something similar for those of you who read this blog, as a way to say thank you and show my endless appreciation for each and every one of you who take the time to read.  

So! For any of you wishing for a little extra holiday cheer this year, send your address (email or snail mail, whatever you’d like) and a name to peggles_82@hotmail.com I PROMISE, no matter where in the world you are I will send you some holiday love! And for added incentive, for each one of you who sends me an address, I will send 1 card to a Canadian Forces member currently on deployment.

I look forward to sending you all a little token of my love and appreciation this holiday season

Peace and Love,
Mandixoxox

Ps. 

Any Canadian Forces Member
Op Attention: Kabul
PO Box 5140 Stn Forces
Belleville ON
K8N 5W6

Remembrance

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
— LC John McCrae, 1915

Thanksgiving is the time of year we begin our annual pilgrimage of gratitude. As Canadians, with our Thanksgiving in October, we spend a lot of time each year giving thanks, but it is this day, the 11th day of the 11th month, that really resonates with most of us.

At 11:11 on 11/11 we all stop what we are doing. Work comes to a halt; music silenced; conversations paused, and we reflect, in silence. Paying tribute to all the men and women, past and present, who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country – for our freedom. In our own quiet ways we offer them prayers of thanks, and pleas for peace.And, we reflect on the things we have, the things that would not be possible had it not been for our heroes. 

I am thankful, and I am grateful. 
LEST WE FORGET

Mandixoxox

An Adventure in Public Speaking (And a Poem)

In March of this year, one of my good friends (and follower of yours truly) got engaged to her other half. Immediately, she started making plans for an October wedding, including extending an invitation for me to write and READ something written especially for the occasion. 

Obviously I said yes (more like “YES! yes! yesss!!!”).

What didn’t occur to me at that moment 5 months ago was that I would have to read in front of a room filled with strangers. This would be stressful enough for someone as shy as myself. Now, add to that the reading would not be something pre-written from a book, it would be a creation of my own making. 

Creative writing often proves difficult for me. I find my mind too busy to focus on one thing at a time, I start too many projects, and generally finish very few (none ever to my liking), and forget about most. This, I am told, is typical of an artist. 

Public speaking has always been my nemesis. In my university days, I took a class aimed at teaching how to deliver a speech – or so I thought. I ended up learning to avoid that class.
In the various positions I have held in my line of work, giving presentations and meetings were an often dreaded requirement. Even as the authority in the room, I had sweaty palms, dry mouth, red face, and a st-st-stutter. Every. Single. Time. 

Writing the piece turned out to be easier than I had anticipated; the words literally came to me in a dream. And, it wasn’t until “wedding week” that I really started to stress out about reading my own work in public. Online forums, such as this one, are great creative outlets because of their anonymity. 

I’ll skip over the train wreck that was the reading of my poem. Focusing instead on what an incredible experience it was to share the day with such a dear friend. I have never seen a bride so exhilarated to walk down the aisle, and I have never felt more honoured to be asked to participate.

 

So! To the new Mr. and Mrs; THANK YOU  for allowing me to take part in your special day (train wreck and all). 

May your mornings bring joy and your evenings bring peace.
May your troubles grow few as your blessings increase.
May the saddest day of your future
Be no worse than the happiest day of your past.
May your hands be forever clasped in friendship
And your hearts joined forever in love.

 

Peace and Love,
Mandixoxox

 

 

 

Red Light

Red Light

By Gabriel Gadfly
You said you wanted
me to come over,
and even though it
was nearly midnight,
I agreed.

I hit every red light
between here and
your house: start
stop wait and wait
and wait and start
just to stop and wait
again, stuck listening to
weight-loss infomercials,
right-wing talk radio,
that god-awful jingle
for the lawyer that
tries to sound like
a wild-west cowboy.

Idling under these red
cyclops eyes, I wanted
to tell you that this had
to stop, that I was going
home, that I’d see you
tomorrow, maybe,
but I finished the drive
and remembered why:
the red scent of your hair;
your lips against my neck,
saying,
“I’m glad you’re here.
I’m so glad you’re here.”