Thursday, April 29, 2010

Her.

Today I woke up and saw the sun. Hi sun, thank you for coming to join us this morning. Jesus, thank you for sun. I had a six miler ahead of me today. Flat, that is what I wanted, so I layered up and went to Alki. As I started my legs felt heavy, uh oh. This is going to be harder then I wanted. As I prayed to "please make this go fast" I felt the wind hit me straight in the face. Great. But as I plowed through one mile then two, I started to think how I would write this post. What do you say or write about something that only you and a couple others feel? How do you convey your emotions the way she would have wanted you to? But as mile three and four passed I couldn't figure it out. So then I just figured I would jot down some thoughts that have come across my mind for the last week in preparation for this day. These moments come across my mind here and there throughout the years, almost always bringing me to tears and smiles. So here are a few things I have thought about in the remembrance of her birthday:

1. I clearly remember the door opening to my bedroom one winter Saturday, still dark outside the hall light was too bright for my eyes to stay closed anymore. As I opened them, I saw her standing there, tall and lean, hair in a pony, PJ's still on. "Shelby do you want to go shopping today? Just you and me?" As soon as I heard that I was up brushing me teeth wide eyed and bushy tailed. We ate every meal together that day, just the two of us. I got a pair of blue keds that she asked if I wanted. That day it was just her and I.

2. She promised her friend Cheryl that when she got better they were going to train and compete in the Ironman Triathlon. THE only race that will push you past your limits, she was ready to take on head first. The day after she went to be with Jesus, Cheryl hopped in the pool and swam. This was her first day of training for the Ironman. Cheryl not only trained but competed in the furthest death defying race one can compete in. She crossed the finish line that day threw her hands in the air and sobbed. Later that week she gave her Ironman medal, the only tangible thing she had to say that she had completed this to Katie and I. "You girls deserve this," she told us.

3. She would come home from long 60-80 mile bike rides, we would run in the garage to come and say hi. She would always wait to take of her sunglasses until we were with her, because she knew how cool we thought it was to see the salt build up she had on her nose. We didn't know why she got that, but we knew it was because she worked hard and pushed herself to the limits.

4. The week before she died I watched as she climbed out of bed, with just a shirt and undies on. As I turned and looked I was shocked at what I saw. He legs were as thin as my arms. And as I started at what should have been strong powerful legs that had biked, ran and swam almost everyday for the last 15 years, all I saw was something that was so alien to me. When she did die I thought about how happy she was to get her body back in Heaven, in one piece, full of life.

There are so many more memories that flood my brain with emotions. But today those are the ones you should know about.

She, my mom, would have been 50. I miss her more and more as each day goes on. But the fact of the matter is she wouldn't want us to sit and be sad. So we won't. We will run, and laugh and live life. She has the best seat in the house to watch us live. We will continue to run after Jesus, because we know that is what she wanted us to do.

Have a fun party today mom. We are going to go and eat Spud now. Love you.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Just a couple of things...

I am going to write two things in this post.

The first will be for all audiences. The second will not. If you are grossed out easily, if you believe that bodily fluids are nasty (like I do), if you believe in the statement TMI, and if you want to not think of me any differently then you do now, I beg of you to only read the first part of this. After that just say to yourself "that was a funny and nice post Shelby, see you tomorrow for your next post." Please people, I beg of you! The only reason I am posting said posting is because it is a part of running. A part of running I pray I will NEVER, EVER be a part of. But anywho...more on that later.

First... today I had to run home to grab something at lunch. Right before I flew out the door on the way back to work I saw my lonely Ipod sitting in the desk. I had forgotten to plug it in to charge yesterday, so I figured I better do it now before I forget again. The day before I was pretty mad at said Ipod because said Ipod has horrible earphones. If any amount of moisture gets into the volume control of the headphones the volume either skyrockets to unheard of volume or decreases to where you can't hear anything and the worst part is it stays at that volume! As you can see this can be annoying, because well a) I run in the rain, uhmmm ALL THE TIME (remember the last post, yea the one where I pretty much quit this whole running thing) b) I sweat like a pregnant pig in heat all other times (oh...comparing myself to a pregnant pig, maybe I should try the whole self confidence thing?). Moisture is getting in those earbuds no matter what I do. So of course this happens yesterday, I get mad, throw said Ipod to the ground and finish my run. So today before I plugged said Ipod in I put the earphones in to see if things had dried out and I was able to change the volume and song. As soon as I turn it on I was able to change the volume...SUCCESS! And then, this is where the fun part starts, I checked to see if I could change the song...SUCCESS! But this was no other song I changed to...it was an ultimate dancing, hip shaking song. So what did I do in my slacks, heals and pearls? Turned that bad boy song up and danced around the apartment. I was having so much fun pretending I was Beyonce with flicking my hair and moving from left to right. I only stopped once to make sure the construction workers down below our apartment couldn't see me. After the song I realized I had to get back to work. So I plugged the Ipod in and ran out the door. As I got into my car I got a little sad. But you will have to wait until tomorrow to know why.

Second....THIS IS THE TMI PART OF THE POST! If you are choosing to read this please raise your right hand and repeat after me: "I (say your name) promise to not barf, pass out or think of Shelby as any type of monster, sick nasty loneytunes person. I hear by give myself full permission to read this and not blame Shelby for any nasty thoughts that might come my way after reading this. I promise to not judge runners or look at them any different when I see them running on the side of the road, by themselves. Amen." Okay maybe we didn't need an Amen at the end, but it is me after all. Good, now that we have all this legalistic stuff our of the way I am going to proceed to post something from a running blog I follow. She is 6'0'' tall (like ME!), played bball for the Zags and is a mother of two (not like me!). On her first marathon this is what she experienced:

"I had always heard of people wetting themselves during a race. After my experience at my half marathon where I had to pee the last 3 miles, I could understand it is horrible holding it in. My bladder is not good for races.Weak Mommy bladder + being hydrated + long potty lines+ impatience= YUCK!! I saw my pace group fade into the distance about 200 yards away, I wanted to catch up but I hurt. We got into the tunnel after 1-90, it was dimly lit and I decided to pee, just a little. In hindsight, first I should have gone a second time before I started the race and second I should have just dropped my pants and squatted. Instead the urine started to flow and flow...everything I drank for the past 3 days came out. My spandex, legs and socks were soaked. At that point I was HUMILIATED and totally lost it mentally. This was the worst case scenario, I am sure I was not alone in the accident department, but REALLY??? WHY?? Training for 16+++ weeks in the snow, rain, heat, with stomach aches, time away from my family and friends and my race was ruined because I WET MY PANTS. CURSES!!! UGH!!! So I kept running, wet."

WHAT!??????? The only thing I have to say about that is this:

Lord, thank You for the ability to run, thank You for the people who support me and who want to see me do well. Lord, there is one thing I ask of you, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE Jesus let this never happen to me. Please Jesus I will never complain about being cold or hurt or sick again. Please Jesus! I love you Jesus!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Interesting turn of events

So usually I start these things with "on Sunday at oh dark hundred hours, ect, ect. ect." Well this week was a little different. On Sunday, instead of running before church, AA and I slept in (does 7:15am count as sleeping in?) and then went off to run the Top Pot Doughnut 5k at Greenlake. What is better then a little fun run in the morning and free doughnuts afterwards? Well to me that day, anything would have been better. I was excited that morning as I got dressed and pinned my number on. I was excited as I visualized my time as I strapped my timing chip on. However, the minute I stepped outside I was in a bad mood. It was freezing, and on that second of that minute I was livid that it was freezing. It wasn't like this was a rare occurrence. It is always freezing when I go out to run. Not once this year have I been able to just wear shorts and a tank. Nope, layers, layers, layers.

As we started walking to the start line I looked at my Jamaican Sprinter and told him, "I quit, I quit running, I will run this race and the Kirkland 1/2 and then I am done." And I was serious. I was so mad that it was cold. I was sick of always being freezing, I was sick of always being sick, I was tired of being always being tired, I was sick of always hurting and aching. I was mad that I have to run everyday by myself, at times for more then 2 hours, nothing has ever felt so lonely. And I made the thoughtful decision that I could just quit. And yes I might let some people down, more importantly myself, but at that minute I didn't care.

That day I had an 18 mile run planned. So after the Top Pot 5k (3 miles) I was going to have AA drop me off and then was going to run the last 15 miles. That thought made me furious and probably played into my decision to quit running. But now that I had quit I didn't have to. Ha running take that, put it in your pipe and smoke it!

As we lined up for the race, I was so mad I started crying. I was freezing, my stomach didn't feel good and I hated that I had just spent X amount of money to run around Greenlake. As the horn sounded we started. I stopped crying long enough to tell my Jamaican sprinter to keep up. He has always ended runs with me, not started, and today I was mad so I had a little getty up in my step. We stayed together for 2 miles, strictly because I was sick of running by myself for all of these months. But then at mile 2 I was so mad I couldn't help but take off. I didn't even say goodbye to AA or that I was going to lengthen my stride, nope I just took off. I was running faster then I had ever ran before, yet I knew I still had a mile left. Could I run at this pace for 8 minutes? Well we were about to find out. I would spot someone and tell myself, beat her, beat him. And you know what? I would surprisingly. Then at about 1/4 mile away from the finish I felt like I was going to bonk. "No, Shelby, keep going, don't you dare bonk on me," I repeated to myself. I sprinted the last 400 yards. I was mad and this finish line was going to get the brunt of it.

After the race I said nothing, just got in the car. AA looked at me and said, "you aren't serious about quitting?" Yes I was. Never again was I going to freeze, be alone, feel sick and now know the pain that was coming during the run and worse, after. But when I got home I couldn't focus on anything. I changed from pants to shorts and left. To the gym I went, just to run 3 more miles. I climbed on to my "best friend" the treadmill and started running. Faster and faster and faster I kept running. Finally after 3.28 miles I had to stop because I felt like I was going to pass out. My feet, knees, and legs felt great. They could have kept going forever it felt like. But my head was in the wrong place.

At home I climbed into the shower and sobbed. And then I remembered Sonja's husband (remember Sonja, the ultra marathoner I follow?) saying, "you may be by yourself but you are not alone." That made me cry harder and I realized I couldn't just quit running. First I was not raised to quit. Second, the one person I follow with all of my heart, Jesus, hasn't quit on me, even when I know I seem impossible.

So yesterday I quit running. But thanks to Jesus today I will start again. I will run 7 miles after work today and then continue on my training plan. The next three weekends are full of trips, half marathons, and other goodies so running exactly to my training plan will be hard. But that's okay. I will keep going. I trust in the Lord that the freezing weather He gives me is for a reason, the pain in my body I feel after is His way of reminding me that running, as in life, isn't easy, and that when you feel the most alone is when you have to rely in Him the most.

Oh how running can bring out the glory of God. Thank you Jesus for these constant reminders.

PS...God? Can you just turn up the heater, just a little bit? Thanks.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Really funny story

Yesterday after work I headed down to Alki for a 6 mile run. I was a little nervous just because I forgot my ear band and only had my hat. And remember...my ears? They are WEAK! They can't take any wind, rain, nothing. They freeze, they make my brain freeze, bad very bad. And it was just about to rain and the wind was kicking up. I was scared. But to my amazement, through all of the wind I was just fine, so were my ears. Thank you ears for cooperating. Do you want to know what wasn't cooperating? My left leg. Injury report 2010: I now have a sting in my pinky toe in my left foot that runs up the outside of my shin. Thankfully the pain stops before my knee. It feels as though my pinky toe is broken and the pain is shooting up my leg. I did not break my pinky toe so I have no I idea what in H-E-double hockey sticks is going on! So with about a mile to go in my run I told my leg to get it together, I was running here! It didn't, but I kept running anyway to its dismay. It got back at me later, trust me.

But here is my "funny" story. This morning, my leg aching, my alarm clock blaring, I climbed out of bed at oh dark hundred hours to go to the gym and run three measly miles. I do my usual, tinkle, get dressed and put deodorant on all without opening my eyes; kiss my Jamaican sprinter goodbye and head to the gym. When I round the corner at the end of the road to hit the gym, not one car in the parking lot. Not ONE car people! Usually I am fighting people for a spot. I win usually, because they see this scary blond haired monster with black mascara smeared down its face packed into this little red beep beep car and they figure they better just let me have the spot. Thank you people, love the scary blond monster. ANYWAY!....I look towards the gym, not one light on, not one. No one in the gym. For two seconds I get excited, is today I holiday I forgot about? I run through all the holidays in my head that I think you get off from work for. But as I was running through them I realize that on all of those holidays except for Christmas the gym has been open. WHAT IS GOING ON??? I think to myself. I do not have the brain capacity this early in the morning to figure out what is going on. Ugh!

I still have no idea what happened to the gym this morning. I do know that I am very mad at the gym. Gym: Do you hear me? I AM MAD AT YOU! You get my up at oh dark hundred hours and you aren't even open. Yea gym...pissed, peeved, irritated. You got this blond monster all riled up! UGHHHHHHHHH! Are you scared, because you should be! Even if I know you will be open this afternoon. I am one angry monster!

Gym? I will see you this afternoon for a run. You better be ready for this monster to dominate you! Or just come in, run three miles and leave. But I will do it all with an angry look on my face, unless of course I run into one of my fav women at the gym, in which I will only smile at them, and the go back to being angry. Gym, I hope our relationship can be come back to it's love hate relationship instead of just the hate hate relationship we have now.

On a "brighter" note I have an 18 mile run on Sunday after church. Lord help me, literally.

Jesus, thank You so much for the ability to run and to live in a place where it is so easy to run and to live healthy. Lord thank You for giving me the resources to be able to go to a gym. Lord thank You for the ability to wear shorts, for I know in so many countries in the world that is not allowed. Lord thank You for being my best friend, constant companion and ultimate running buddy. Lord when I feel alone You are there. Thank You Lord. I love You!

Monday, April 19, 2010

My new mantra....

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning, the devil says, "Oh crap, she's up!"

Friday, April 16, 2010

New little secret!

Today...no foot pain...as of yet! This is a good thing. The only sting I felt was my first step out of bed this morning, but other then that I am good to go, hopefully. Can't you tell me confidence level isn't quite where it should be?

Well today will be brief, I have a little trick up my sleeve for all of you, like me, who hate the torture chamber, I mean treadmill. If you are like me, it gets so boring...oh so boring. And at times it seems harder then if I were to just run outside. So on my short 3-4 milers I do on the treadmill I run the first 1 to 1.5 up hill. Okay I am not talking mountain training I am just saying a 1-2% increase. You put it at that level first thing, so as you are walking on the treadmill getting "warmed up", (aka, fixing your ponytail, trying to figure out what song is going to pump you up, this morning it was "Welcome to the Jungle", sizing up who is next to you, this morning it was a 60 year old women who came up to my hip, and trying to rub the mascara off of your face, because you know that is why everyone is giving you the scary face) you will never know the difference. And then at a 1.5 mile you go back down to 0% and you know what? It feels like you are flying DOWNHILL! So then you just keep telling yourself, just another 2 miles, all downhill!

So there is my little tidbit for the morning. Hope you enjoy! :)

PS..THE Pioneer Woman flies into Seattle today, would it be considered stalking if I went to the airport found out which gate planes were flying in from Oklahoma and well "just hung out" and maybe, just maybe if I were to happen to find her strolling around, while I was of course "strolling around" ask her to be my new best friend? Just saying...it might happen.

If for whatever reason I haven't posted something in the next couple days I have either a) convinced her that I am her new best friend and have left everything to go live with her on the ranch or b) have been locked up for uhmm, well, stalking. Maybe I will just wait until tomorrow to see her....

Sunday, April 11, 2010

So tired.

I wish I didn't start all posts the same, but today I am so tired I have to, because I don't know what else to say. I wish I could think of something, but I just mentally cannot. I have been crying all day, why? Because I am so tired. I have been staring straight ahead, why? Because I am exhausted. Why, do you ask? This morning at 6:47am I started my trot. And at 9:11am I stopped trotting. 2 hours and 26 minutes later I was done with 16 miles. At mile 15 I literally thought my back was going to break in half...this is not a good thing. But I thought to myself "I lost sleep over this run, I never thought I could do this run, am I going to stop now, so close to finishing?" And you know what I said to my self? "H-E-double hockey sticks I am not going to stop, keep pushing, keep that tushy moving (for clarification: forward, not jiggly), and gosh darn it Shelbster, FINISH! And that I did, just barely.

I climbed straight into the shower afterwards, I had to get ready for church. I figured the congregation would not appreciate sticky, sweaty, NASTY Shelbster in mixed with the rest of them. But as I climbed out of the shower all I could do was bend over and cry. I was so tired and sore. That's when AA found me...EMBARRASSING! Again, said to myself "stop crying you baby, get yourself together!" That I did, went to church, and then went to have a bucket of greasy fabulousness called Spud fish and chips. YUMMOS!

I wish I had more to say about this run, but I still haven't quite got my head around what happened out there. Here are some of the facts: 9minute 10 second pace, only saw one male runner out there, saw 12 women (GIRL POWER!), I thought I was going to have to climb behind a bush to have an emergency potty stop after taking my GU (praise Jesus I didn't) and finally, the biggest bug I have ever seen flew straight into my eye, lodging itself there. Had to pull over next to a truck, use it's review mirror to dig it out of my eye. I almost lost my cookies right then and there.

The good news about today...my Jamaican sprinter took video!! Here are 2 videos just for you! A couple of things first:
1. The first video is of my usual 10 mile pit stop of water and now because I am running longer, GU. For those of you who do not know what GU is, drop to your knees and thank Jesus. It is NASTY, but gives you plenty of energy.
2. You will hear A talking to me, I have no clue what he is saying to me because my headphones were blasting some Beyonce, Brittney, ect. So when he says "I love you" and I don't say it back, it's because I never heard it in the first place. :)
3. The last video is of me having a panic attack at mile 13.23. I was feeling pretty horrible. It is a quick video because I asked A to stop filming, I didn't want to have you watch me literally break. Trust me, it was ugly...no more needs to be said.


video

video

Hope you enjoyed! Maybe next time I will be able to actually talk...and maybe smile?

Jesus, thank You for running. Thank You for the blessings your have put in my life. Lord I will praise you in the good and bad. Thank You for beautiful reminders at church this morning. I love You Jesus!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Just a couple things...

Yesterday before I went to work I had a 6 mile run ahead of me. The day before I was actually excited, to go out and run. I was more excited to not be on a treadmill, (remember, my arch rival who HATES ME?). I checked the weather, it was supposed to be nice, NICE people! So I went on watched my favorite show, The Biggest Loser :), and knew tomorrow I would wake up and have a nice easy run. Then right before I went to bed the weather guy comes on to give us a preview of the 11pm news, and you know what he said? "See the latest storm coming into Seattle." Latest storm? What the heck, this afternoon it said it was supposed to be nice tomorrow morning?

So the next morning I woke up, looked outside to see our little tree almost bent over sideways from the wind and knew I HAD to run. During my run I knew what I was going to blog about, COMPLAINTS! Just imagine, freezing, windy, by myself. I had one complaint right after the other.

But then when I stopped when I got home, I realized that I was lucky to run. No one said I couldn't, no one stopped me because I was a woman, I could have worn just shorts and a sports bra (trust me nobody wants to see that) and no one would have put me in jail. So no complaints today, nope, I am just lucky the Lord has given me the opportunity to run. Thank you Jesus.

Second, I was watching this video about this woman who ran an ultra marathon. Do you know what an ultra marathon is? 100 miles! 100 miles people! It takes about 24 hours, 100 miles!!!!!!!!! I can't even wrap my head around that. But anyway, she was running and her husband was videotaping as she would run by as she passed and she started to cry because she had been out there by herself for so long. And you know what he said to her? "You might be running alone, but you are NOT by yourself." I almost broke down right then and there and started boo-hooing.

What an amazing parallel to life! You might be by yourself but you are not alone. What a comforting thought in today's society, that Jesus is right next to you the whole way. No matter what mile you are on, no matter what valley in life you are in, no matter how alone you feel, He is with you. On some days there is nothing more comforting than that. If you let God be the author of your story, He will never let you be alone in the chapters of your life.

I wish I would have remembered that when I was complaining, swearing under my breathe and giving mean looks to little puppy dogs yesterday, (of come on give me a break, you go run 6 miles in the freezing cold! :) ). I wish I would have remembered that I am not alone, because that gives me hope at all times. Thank you Jesus for not leaving me alone.