Sunday, March 27, 2011

Now IS that moment

Remember the movie "While you were sleeping"? It's a true chick flick from start to finish which means, despite the fact that it was not exactly cinematic genius, it is one of my favorites. The plot of the movie is irrelevant to this post but there is this one great scene in the movie, which I believe is genius. The patriarch of the family around which the movie centered is sitting at the kitchen table eating doughnuts and talking with his son. His son, played by Bill Pullman (one of the times he played the nice guy who doesn't finish last) is trying to work up the gumption to tell his father that he does not want to take over his father's business as had been his father's lifelong plan for him. Anyway the father is talking about family and life. He says something to the effect of (very loosely paraphrased) ~ there are so many worries  in life, so much illness and strife and fighting and conflict, but sometimes, just for a brief moment everything is fine. Everyone you love is okay. No one is ill. No one is fighting. Just for a moment. To which Bill Pullman's character replies "this is not that moment dad" (and goes on to tell him that his lifelong dream of his son taking over the family business will not come to fruition).

Well, for me, this IS that moment. The clouds of the past few months have lifted. I have learned a ton and figured out some very important things. I am functioning so, so much better. No one in my circle is ill. No one in my circle is in conflict with each other. Of course there are worries for me and mine but they are not consuming and, let's face it, on the global scale of worries, they are minuscule. Now IS that magical moment that the father figure in "While you were sleeping" described. I feel so fortunate first to be living it but also, and just as important, to realize while I am still in the moment, how sweet it is. No looking back and saying "remember how great it was when", life is great right here and now.

In the category of not-so-great was the 10 km race I ran today. Though in the Pollyanna spirit of this post I will mention that it was wonderful to be out on a (winterish) spring day in bright sunshine busting a lung running. It has been 5 weeks since this race and I truly thought I would shave close to a minute off my time at that race. Instead, I added 15 seconds. Hmmm. I ran 39:22 - 70 seconds slower than I feel I am in shape to run. I ran the first km in 3:54 and thought "okay, don't get nervous, that was just a warm-up km... it'll probably be the slowest km of the race." Nope! 3:54, 4:01, 3:58, 3:45, 3:56, 3:55, 4:08 (into a ridiculously strong wind), 3:40, 4:10 (wind), 3:52.

It was so strange because I could speak to my friends who were on the sidelines in a normal tone of voice, I was not out of breath at all but I could not turn over my legs. It was almost as if my central nervous system wasn't firing. At one point I could hear someone coming up behind me and I thought, okay, let them pass... and it was as if I literally had to remind myself that I could run faster, that I could increase my turn-over. Like the proverbial dream where one is being chased and one cannot run. So I am not sure WHAT that means I am lacking. I feel like I am lacking a bit of everything actually - endurance, aerobic fitness, speed, technique, self control when it comes to not eating refined sugar and white-flour based products :) Working on all of these things would probably be beneficial but how do I train my central nervous system to fire faster? How do I remind my body that it can run fast? Drills? Core work? Running into traffic?


  1. I wish you that it is not just a moment, but that it is a looooooong period, preferably neverending.

    I have no self-control when it comes to refine sugar neither:( I have never had.
    No advice about reminding your body how to go fast, you are a coach, you should know, don't you think !?! :)

  2. true, I am a coach... but it is always so much easier to solve other people's training quandries than one's own. something about having a bit of distance from the situation. also this is a bit of an unusual problem for me. in that i feel I can run so much faster but my body keeps forgetting and falling off the rhythm. I do think it is a combination of central nervous system training required - need to do some turn-over drills & exercises to get the CNS engaged again and also just having not raced in awhile so i need to re-train my focussing abilities (and of course get into better shape too).

  3. I certainly know how hard it is to coach oneself (one's self? Dang, English be hard). Sometimes I get the slow turnover when I've been doing nothing but long runs; quick-stepping drills and running on technical trail (where I have to lift my legs over roots and rocks, balance and step from side to side at the same time) and, if training for track races, dreaded plyometrics, seem to help.