November 12, 2017

I Have a Right to Do Better Tomorrow

Every time I get a chance to run here, I feel so very alive and blessed.
This was a tough couple of weeks, but they were good.

This week's Crissy Filed ParkRun crowd.  Such a great community event, 
and a comforting way to start the morning of a family memorial service.
We had the big memorial for the unexpected death in the family.  All of my cousins on one side came, as did all of their children.  It was the first time we'd all been in the same place since the last three additions to the family had been born and it was wonderful. 

The Niece and Nephew *LOVE* Guito.
Of course the reason we were all gathered was sad.  But it was still so lovely to be together and share the sadness of our loss while smiling and laughing with one another and the next generation.

Check out that handsome man and his sub 9 min/mile PR!
Workout wise, I'd needed to dial it back a bit in the face of the emotional demands of the family stuff.  There were many days where I headed out for X miles and at X/2 just started walking, teared up, and tried to decide whether to turn back or stay out for some run-walking to get some additional mileage done.  Even so, over the last two weeks, I still managed to pull together 2 yoga studio sessions that left me sore and suffering for days afterwards, 2 decent track workouts thanks to the running group, one pseudo long run of 5 miles, and a few of the pre-described weird failures of the planned workouts that still resulted in some semblance of decent stuff totaling 31 miles for one week and 20ish miles this week (Note: I count a bunch of walking -- each yoga day involves 3 miles round trip walking to the studio on top of the torture time in the studio, and I also have my fancy walking treadmill at my desk).

Yet another entrant in the series titled: 
"Awkward Finishing Photos in Front of Gorgeous Views" 
Saturday, E and I returned to our beloved Parkrun.  I thought I'd forgotten my Garmin (I hadn't, but didn't realize it 'til we got back to the hotel), so we went out by effort and after about 1 mile E took off to pick people off and PR by 1 minute.  I did my best and was pleased to cross the line 1m24s faster than 2 weeks ago. 

Finally, a decent run in my log that has a single digit minute per mile time.  Sure it's only 9:55/mile, but progress is progress and I'll take it.

Thursday's roasted butternut squash and potatoes in prep for gnocchi.
Some of this improvement is definitely due to C's shoestring incident during last Parkrun, but most of it is due to increased fitness and digging deeper at the end as I passed a woman with 1/3 of a mile to go and I could hear her breathing and footfalls behind me for most of that last bit -- amazing how motivating the human competition factor can be.  It hurt to push at the end, but I was willing to hurt to avoid being repassed -- totally arbitrary, but good and fun, nonetheless.

Gnocchi dough, all peeled roasted starches kneeded with an egg and flour.

Sunday's recovery run was a non-starter.  I've been nursing a tight glute/hamstring insertion for a couple of weeks and Saturday's race followed by lots of car-sitting meant that the planned long slow run turned into 1 mile of run-walking and lots of rolling and stretching before cooking E's birthday dinner.  I hadn't made gnocchi in years.  But it was his request, so that's what I was doing.

First layer of gnocchi for the fridge, 3+ layers later at 1 AM, I called it.
Due to weekend travel obligations, I roasted the butternut squash and potatoes on Thursday and made the gnocchi that night after a networking event (I was up 'til almost 1 AM rolling and cutting).  They kept in the fridge 'til Sunday, when I finally boiled them and served them under a homemade 3-meat bolognese with a side of Brussel sprouts.

My aunt's memorial service was full of tales of her feeding and otherwise nourishing people, and it felt very right to feed E's friends to celebrate his birthday after we celebrated her life. 

Pork, Veal, Beef Bolognese cooked down for 3+ hours.
Also, both of my cousins who were her children gave amazing speeches at her memorial.  Several of the things they said stuck with me (like supermommery involving treats for sports teams magically delivered to trunks of cars in high school parking lots, or how the last thing Cousin D's mom taught him was how to die like a BADASS).  But, the one thing that stuck with me the most was when my cousin D said, "And once, after she did something that disappointed herself, she said emphatically, 'I have a RIGHT to do better tomorrow, your dad taught me that.'"

So, in honor of my aunt (and my uncle and cousins and all of us who lost her), I'm going to take that one to heart and try to remember it whenever I have a day where I don't do as well as I could (every day?). In my relationships. In my mental and physical health.  In running. In everything.

Onward. To walking and stretching and rolling today and hopefully running better tomorrow.


Angela Knotts said...

So sorry for your loss. Glad you were able to still enjoy the time with family. And your food looks delicious. :)

Jen said...

And yum!!

Biting Tongue said...

Thanks to both of you!

Arvay said...