Friday, November 12, 2010

I can fly

My workout almost ended up in Neverland today.

This morning, I spent two hours at a consignment shop selling bits of my childrens' babyhood--the double stroller, the saucer, the toy rocking horse, the cute little blue snowsuit . . . the act of "cleaning house" should have left me feeling lighter; instead, I felt heavy-hearted. The reserved and uppity owner of the store didn't help matters any, the way she pawed through the items that were so precious to me, declaring them "out of date" or "not what we're looking for" and "not clean enough," though everything had been freshly laundered and you would have needed a magnifying glass to find the small stain or tiny pull she detected. I understand the woman has a business to run but, sheesh, a little humanity please!
So, I drove home with a big case of the blues, not yet ready to face the formidable task of doing the grocery shopping, and detoured back to my house for lunch (leftover three mushroom risotto) and to organize my shopping list and coupons.
Two hours and two full shopping carts later, I was finally heading home for the second time. The temperature had climbed to 70 degrees--in November!--and the sun was shining in the bright blue sky. I had a car full of groceries and exactly one hour and counting before my kids got home from school. You have never seen a woman unload the groceries so quickly! (Effectively becoming my pre-run warm up.)
If it wouldn't spoil or melt, it was left on the kitchen counter to be dealt with later. After unloading in record time, I dashed upstairs, peeling off clothes as I went--the errand-running, grocery shopping, domestic mommy uniform of jeans, long-sleeve T, zip up fleece and Keens being swapped for the athletic mommy uniform of running shorts, wicking T, industrial strength sport top and trusty Kenvaras.
30 minutes left. I'd downgraded my run from the hoped for 4-5 miles today to a short 3-miler, and even that was pushing it. I had no choice--I'd have to sprint. The whole way. Or, for as much of it as I could. And for a slow-trodding, negative-split, endurance runner like myself, sprinting is about as appealing as liver and onions. Blech!
It was a miserable run, but I dug into it--channeling the sadness and frustration I'd felt at the consignment store and the domestic doldrums of the grocery store, and tried to convert that negative energy into positive output.
I rounded the corner into my neighborhood and onto my street at the same time as the school bus. My kids got a kick out of seeing me running alongside the bus and were smiling and waving to me from the windows.
Three miles. 26 minutes. At just over 8.5 minutes per mile that is lightening speed for me. And, boy did I ever hate and curse every one of those wind-sucking minutes. But I did it, and I'm proud of myself for getting it done even when it would have been so much easier to skip it today.

The small lift I got from that run was short-lived as I walked back in to the house to face the wreckage I'd left in my wake--food and grocery bags covering every surface of my kitchen, now embellished with my kids' backpacks and lunchboxes and school papers.
What's a girl to do?
Ignore it, of course, and head down to the gym to put in those 2o minutes of strength training I'd also hoped for. So I can say I did it all today. I'm the Enjoli woman. "I can bring home the groceries, run as fast as I can . . . destroy the kitchen and put weights in my hands. . . "
Okay. Clearly, I am starting to lose it now so I will wind it up with this: After my gym time I was once again staring down a one-hour window. In that hour I shoved the still-bagged groceries aside and made homemade pizzas, took a quick shower, fed the fam and had us all out the door in time to see the school play we had tickets for.
It was Peter Pan and he could fly. Peter Pan's got nothing on me.

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