Archive for the ‘running’ Category

My F*#k It List
July 10, 2013

My F*#k-It List

Another birthday is approaching and even though I’m periodically annoyed with some of the physical realities, I am moving forward into middle age with surprising ease because I am also open to some of the positive gifts of growing older. Generally speaking for me, there is actually a converse relationship between my physical attributes and my overall contentment. I feel freer to be me, now more than ever before. Those youthful “should be’s” and “better do’s” are melting away with the years. Being of a certain age I’m confident and clear about what fits the real me. I can let go of other’s ideas about me, or women, or good mothers, or mature behavior.

The more I thought about this new freedom I began to realize that there is a whole number of things that are just NOT me, or right for me and from that “My F*#k It List” was born! This is the complete opposite of a “Bucket List”- that quaint Boomers exercise where one lists all the things they want to do before they “kick the bucket” to ensure that at the end of their life they are fulfilled and complete- I guess?
My list is all the things that I’m really never going to do, have no intention of doing, and feel no compulsion to ever complete or improve on. I’m embracing my authenticity!
Here you have it:

#1. I’m not going to look at my back. A dear friend recently described to me a depressing scene in her bathroom after a shower where she examined herself naked thoroughly from the back in the mirror and she was appalled, so I decided- why bother? I have a general knowledge about what is protruding, wiggling or even discolored back there, but I pay a doctor to make sure nothing is really wrong and beyond that what is back there is actually anyone who is behind me’s problem. F*#k em, they should up walking next to me anyway- catch up!

#2. I’m never going to pack light- and related to that,
#3. I’m never going to carry a small purse.
I want to be able to decide when I’m there according to my mood, the weather, my weight, and any other changing conditions what shoes, clothes and accessories I’m going to wear, so I’m willing to pay extra and yes, I do need help with my bags. As for all those orthopedic warnings about large pocketbooks ruining posture, and causing neck and shoulder injuries, please- I’m middle age- I’ve pulled a muscle just getting into bed. I maintain a miniature bathroom valet in my purse complete with over- the- counter everything, and lotions for all occasions and skin types. AND I have a membership or customer reward card from every retail store and eatery in North America. I’m going to be buried with this stuff- because you just never know – when life as we know it ends maybe you can still redeem points earned from Panera Bread for a free pastry.

#4. I’m never going to do a hot yoga class- or run a full marathon. I love to exercise, I run several times a week, and Yoga has given me back flexibility and balance that I thought was lost forever, BUT nothing should ever be done in triple digit heat- it’s called “Hell” cause it’s so fu*#king hot!
And because I’m a slow runner there is nothing ever created or imagined that I really want to do continuously, and repeatedly for over 5 hours- even eating chocolate cake for that long would not be fun. By the way- 26.2 is completely stupid number.

#5. (This one should be obvious.) I not going to clean up my language and stop dropping f-bombs in my conversations. I’m professional when I need to be, and I would never intentionally offend anyone, but with my friends, and when not in mixed company (children or Religious people) I will continue to exuberantly color my descriptions with “What the f*#k?”, “Get the f*#k out of here!” and “I can gauranf*#kingtee you…”

#6. I am not going to stop talking in that funny voice and making up words when I encounter a sweet puppy, a snuggly kitten or an adorable baby. I speak fluent “dog” to my dog Mae, and her neighborhood canine friends and their wagging tails confirm that my accent is perfect!

#7. I not going to wear pajamas or nightgowns- ever— I can’t get over the ridiculousness of getting dressed in clothes to go to sleep!!! —I’ll never parade around publically, but even in the nursing home of the future – it’s naked and nothing for sleeping.

This is not an exhaustive list, I intend to continually update the list with decisive “not gonnas” and “no f#*king way” for years to come. Actually my Bucket List is simply to keep adding to my F#*k It List. I encourage everyone to pursue deep self knowledge and create their own list of never- evers, challenging the status quo and the self improvers to sit down and shut the f*#k up.

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Running
April 23, 2013

I’ll never forget the first time I drove in the darkness of the pre-dawn to meet the group of women runners at Kennedy Park in Coconut Grove. I was stunned to learn that a whole secret society convened early every Saturday morning with hundreds of runners meeting to run the route that provided the reward of a spectacular sunrise as we crested “the bridge” on Key Biscayne. Unbeknownst to the average, sleeping Miami resident, there are throngs of runners and walkers organized by charity, fitness levels, and general camaraderie, outfitted with the latest digital watches, special engineered shoes, energy snacks and hydration belts. All focused on accomplishing their mileage, precisely preplanned to train for the next “race”.

Health is a common motivator, either to begin a healthy routine or to maintain one, or to help those not healthy. Many of groups train specifically to run events and raise funds to fight cancers or a number of other life threatening illnesses.

This phenomenon of people of all sorts and sizes coming together early every Saturday morning to connect and run is extraordinary.
And yet it is also simple. Just one foot in front of the other, repeatedly, over and over and over.
And spectacular- A picture postcard backdrop with canopied trees, waterfront mansions, and eventually the waterside route sandwiched between the ocean and the bay, with the downtown skyscrapers and the cruise ships serving as the horizon line.

It is simple, it is special –
And it was safe.

Running etiquette protects runners from traffic and one another. The familiar warning: “runners back” will shift everyone to their right, slipping into single file to allow the faster to pass. And like boating, runners always stop to assist anyone enroute with an injury, or a fall.

Most running events are organized, fine -tuned machines, with well trained and abundant volunteers and staff, clearly marked routes, and ample, well placed hydration stations all along the course. Police are also a staple along the routes, leaning against their cruisers they have wedged into intersections to prevent rogue cars from “entering” the race. The officers are often some of the loudest of the cheerleaders as the runner streak by them. Medical personnel are always quickly available for the overheated, and the inevitable injuries. Safe and sound, all taken care of- all the runners have to do is show up and run.

It’s simple- one foot in front of the other, the next step and the next. Simple goals of further and faster. Attention has to be paid to the body, soreness or pain, road hazards of potholes, dog poop, and rude drivers, but for the most part, runners had assumed an innocence of security, especially during running events. That sense of safety was literally shattered by the bomb blasts at the Boston Marathon last Monday.

Now running is associated with war -like images of carnage, the finish line no longer a symbol of joyful accomplishment, but a place of blood soaked horror.

We will need to pause, to absorb the reality of the irreplaceable losses and the deep pain. In that pause we turn toward one another with profound compassion and a compulsion to help one another to go on. These incidents only succeed in breaking our hearts – open. Injury and inhumanity may sideline us for a while, and we will walk if we have to, but we will continue on- together. It’s proven that violence does not solve anything and nor does it stop us from going forward.

I can guarantee to the perpetrators of Monday’s blast, that every single runner will be there again running that bridge this Saturday, and every Saturday morning thereafter. No one will stay away because of this, everyone is still running, and the ladies of my running group will be waiting for me there. The Boston Marathon will have just as many, if not more runners next year. We rebuild buildings, we send our children back to school, we hurt, we mourn, but we keep going.