Saturday, August 8, 2015

My Running Chronicles: I Am Runner Girl - Feel the Shift!

We were out last night celebrating our daughter's 28th birthday. We ate later than usual, got to bed later than usual and didn't sleep well thanks to a cat and mouse hunt by our beloved four foot Jamie. The commotion woke us up in the middle of the night. I looked downstairs and saw a medium size brown mouse charge across the floor with Jamie in hot pursuit. The mouse went into my brand new running shoes to hide. Jamie stood guard trying to figure out how she could get the mouse in my shoe. Finally Tom went downstairs to set the mouse free.

When it was time to rise 'n shine and get our run on, I wanted to just turn over and go back to sleep. But a part of me was also very excited to get my longest run on since last October's Tufts 10K.

Tom and I meditated, did our plank, crunches and clams, had our breakfast and packed up our essentials to head to South Boston and run the route we ran last week only this time going the 10K distance.

I had butterflies. Was I really going to be able to go the distance? Would my knee "hold up"? And then I mind creates my body so what do I choose to create. During my meditation I affirmed, " I am happy, healthy and whole. My body is my sacred vessel and my home."

As we pulled into our parking space the craziest thing happened to me.

"I'm going to be 62 in a few months and I'm off of disability and receive straight social security."

Tom was so loving and affirming as I made that observation.

I started sobbing. "It's been so hard." And then I started laughing this deep deep belly laugh - so deep that my stomach muscles hurt. Sobbing and laughing at the same time. Tom said it was like a sun shower where there's pouring rain yet the sun is out.

Something broke free within me and all my doubts washed away.

It was a perfect weather day for a run!

I reminded Tom and myself that it takes awhile to get warmed up - especially after a night out and little sleep. We looked at the clear blue skies, the ocean, the beach and lost ourselves in the moment. We were so grateful for the perfect running weather especially compared to last week's 85 degrees and humidity. For today's run it was 74 degrees and no humidity. We also found more shade along the route.

After four miles Tom turned to me and said, "You could run the half today couldn't you?"

I was definitely in the head space of running a half marathon taking it mile by mile and enjoying every step of the way.

I told Tom that I knew that my pace would come; that for now I just want to enjoy the runs and experience building miles again...only this time I'm building miles not as a mobility impaired runner but as a runner.period. As it turned out, we ran 3 miles at a 15:00 minute/mile pace and change and our overall pace was 24 seconds/mile off of last week's pace. The cooler weather and speed work certainly helped our pace.

As we neared the end of our run, my iPhone said we were on low battery. I realized that as our runs get longer, I have to make sure that my phone is fully charged and to bring a charger in the car because Nike+ uses a lot of battery. I picked up the pace. No way was I going to get my phone die before we documented my 6.2 mile run. I was amazed at how much I had left in the tank. Once again we visualized coming down Front Street and hearing our names called out by the Bermudian race announcers. Tom said, "Team McManus is on pace for a personal best." When Nike+ congratulated us on completing our 6.21 miles, we hugged and kissed and quickly made sure that we could get our post training run runfie and sync the run on Nike+.

I changed into flip flops and we went into the ocean for our nature's very own ice bath. I could feel my legs flush.

Last week, I ended up with a purple and painful toenail after our run. After Tuesday's run, I was in a lot of pain. I went to Marathon Sports, our go to store for every endurance running need and was fitted with the same shoe, a half size larger. During my meditation I repeated, "My new running shoes are a perfect fit and are going to carry me swiftly through my run today." I ran with no pain from my toenail and even though it is still purple, it feels great! The salt water is also a wonderful healing agent.

After a rest on the beach, as we walked to our car, I felt my knee buckle and briefly lock. You have a strong and healthy leg....And so it is, I thought to myself. I felt a shift in my leg's energy and felt the strength and health of my left leg.

Tom and I drove to the Seaport District to have lunch at 75 on Liberty, one of our favorite go to places. We drove once around the block and there was a parking space waiting for us almost across the street from the restaurant. There was a man sitting on the bench at the bus stop.

"That's a really great parking space," this stranger said to us.

"They are very rare around here. I was very lucky to get one down the street."

His affect reminded me of the person who appears to Marlee Matlin in the water scene from What the bleep do we know....

"Well my wife imagines a parking space is available every time she comes down here," Tom said to him.

"Your wife has a very powerful imagination," he said to us.

"Yes...I do ... I imagined myself out of a wheelchair 8 years ago," I replied.

"Good for you," he said.

We went on our way, had an amazing lunch and when I got home I took an epsom salts ice bath followed by a hot shower to flush lactic acid out of my system.

I am sore but feel absolutely amazing. I am healed. And I reactivated my twitter account with a new handle: @runnergirl1953.

Makes sense doesn't it? I am a runner girl in addition to feeling the heal, I feel the shift and know in every fiber of my

I chronicle the first 7 years of my healing journey after being diagnosed with post polio syndrome, a progressive neuromuscular disease as a survivor of childhood paralytic polio and 9 years of childhood domestic violence in Coming Home:A Memoir of Healing, Hope and Possibility.

"Feel the Heal: An Anthology of Poems," my latest collection of inspirational poetry is now available soon on Amazon

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