Friday, November 5, 2010

Thankful List (Day 3)

Today I'm thankful for my years I ran for the UW - STOUT
track & field team.
-I met some of my best friends & roommates.
-I was actually IN SHAPE & able to keep off my freshman 15.
-It provided me with a much needed & necessary break from
design work.
-I was stretched & challenged as an athlete.
-We went on some sweet, all expense paid vacations.
-Competition. Competition. Competition -- I thrive on it.
-I had an incredible coach who turned into more of a mentor & friend.

I am particularly thankful and reflective on these times today
because . . . (tangent alert)

Starting last night (but more so this morning) my legs were extremely restless. Does this ever happen to you? It's actually a typical occurrence for me, but it's almost always cured with a quick 50 meter sprint. Today that was NOT the case. When it started last night it was close to 1:30AM and I didn't want to venture out -- mainly because it was pretty cold -- so I did leg raises, lunges, bicycle kicks, flutter kicks, leg swings, and everything I could think of until my thighs, calves, and ass were too sore to move. When I woke up this morning I was anxious to finish reading a book that I had almost completed the night before (but obviously got sidetracked). I only have about 20 pages left, I'm really into it, and my legs start crying to move again. I forced them to stay put for 20 more pages but could only get through 10.5 before I threw the book down and put on running clothes faster than I can sprint a 100m dash. My legs were taking over and I started going crazy. I HAD TO SPRINT. So I did -- but I'm SO out of shape that my cardiovascular system can't keep up. My legs wanted to go gO GO! Sprinting is also something that your body can't just do. Well, maybe it can . . . but not well. Your body needs lots of practice & refinement in order to build up certain muscles, to teach your arms, feet, and legs what to do, to get everything in sync so that your sprinting feels like a glide: very smooth & fast. Today I felt like a car speeding down the interstate low on oil and with tires out of balance. I was so uneven and mechanical that no matter how fast I was running, I didn't feel fast at all.
So, this whole, big, frustrating & anxious, tired & unbalanced feeling this morning made me realize how thankful I am for my years running at Stout. I loved being in shape, I loved sprinting, I loved the competition, and I loved the support of my team pushing me forward. I know nothing will ever replace my track years but I hope my glaring realization today will help me make sure my lungs catch up to my legs.

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