Monday, June 30, 2008

Trying to Find a Place in This World

So I'm again contemplating my life and where I am - as I do quite often - and, I recently have the task of contemplating not only where I am but WHO I am. I made a list of some things that I know I am for sure a month or so ago - it was a riveting blog entry - and I am truly those things but I'm needing to look deeper than "I'm the kind of girl who can eat frozen pizza and play play station one night and paint the town red in a cute little dress the next".

I'm into Taylor Swift lately. She's a teeny bopper country star who's CD has been in my car for the last two months and I'm not sick of it - in fact, I listen to a portion of it at least once a day during my commute.

Anyway, she has a song that starts "I don't know what I want, so don't ask me, 'cause I'm still trying to figure it out..." This song speaks to ME...I'm constantly trying to figure out what it is that I want...and I don't have a clue right now.

I've been drifting in the last month or so and as much as I hated May I'm sad to say that June didn't get any better.

I'm once again finding myself at another turning point - although this one is as a whole new person in a whole new life - one that I haven't quite fit into yet, one that's a mystery to me as I have never been in this place before. It's scary and dark and I'm sometimes struggling for air. But I'll get out. I've put the shovel down and now I'm starting to slowly build some stairs and climb...slowly coming up with things that will get me to the surface again.

My mom said to me that I am never one to get in a rut - I'm not one to stay in one place for very long and be happy. And it's true. I'm constantly thinking that there's something more out there - something better, something different, somewhere that I fit now more than ever.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Turns Out, Yep, I'm Kind of Crazy!

In more ways than one I'm probably a little crazy...which you know makes me a really interesting person or at least that's what I tell myself.

I really decided that I'm nuts this weekend when my girlfriend Rachel called on Saturday and said "you remember that we were talking about doing that triathlon? Well, it's 29 days away, are we in?" - I didn't hesitate in saying "Absolutely." Unfortunately, the registration is closed which is a HUGE bummer, but we're still going to do one. However, now I at least have until August to get ready!

But, in the spirit of training, I started my day with a 3.25 mile run followed by a .5 mile swim. Ok, off to a good start I suppose, now just throw in a 12.4 mile bike and I'm good to go (which would be awesome if I had a bike to train with, I should work on now).

It'll be a fun experience and I physically know I can do this - and my goal is just to finish - and it's great extra training for the Marathon which is 104 days away, assuming that the Quad Cities still exist after this devastating weather in the last couple of weeks (which I'm hoping is the case, because this has been really awful and just plain sad).

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Because I'm Always Harping About Being Creative

I know I talk about how important being creative is to me - and the importance of finding some time for creativity in my crazy world - and I had to share a little about an artist I truly enjoy.

Jackson Pollock is an American artist who best known for his "drip" paintings (that's my unartistic explanation). Pollock started laying large canvases down on the floor of his barn and positioned himself above the canvas and began to "drip" paint down onto it - creating beautiful art that some call chaotic and I call creative.

The Getty Center in LA used to have an original Pollock while I was in grad school. I loved sitting in front of it for hours thinking about the lines of the paint and creating images out of them (kind of like laying on your back and finding dogs and ice cream cones in the clouds). Pollock's paintings are mezmerizing.

Anyway, I found this wonderful, inspiring website that will come up as a blank screen - until you start moving your mouse around. You can change your "paint" color by clicking down on your mouse! What a fun way to put some creativity into your day (great stress relief too!!) Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

If My Head Didn't Fell Like It Were About To Explode

So this is officially week two of marathon training. Week one went swimmingly - I got lots of runs in and lifted, and swam - I felt awesome, and totally ready to conquer!

However, yesterday morning I drug myself to the Y and since it was raining (seriously it can stop doing that NOW. Thanks.) I hopped on a treadmill set to do 6 miles. Yeah...not so much. About a quarter mile in I was HOT - not like in the everyday, Jen's really hot way, but I was SWEATING - already. This was not going to be good. It seemed like it took an hour to get one mile in (in reality it took 9:30 - details).

And then around mile 2 my head started to pound, and not from the Pink Bus tunes I was jamming to. This was not a good pound...and then there around 2 1/4 miles my face started to feel like it was going to explode. I told myself I only had to do 3 miles since I was dying and all, and it was amazing I even made it to that.

Holy cow - I can't explain the pain I was in - ALL DAY yesterday. I really feel for the people who constantly suffer from allergies, and while I have my share of sinus infections, I have certainly not ever felt as bad as I did yesterday (ok, I may be exaggerating a LITTLE here, but I can assure you, it was awful).

So, I started taking my generic sudafed (Wal-phed in fact. Who names those things anyway?) in case it was allergies (and this is the REAL stuff, the kind you have to use your driver's license to get) and I managed to (barely) make it through my day.

And since I really can't afford to be sick right now (I have too much to do, don't my sinuses understand I have a MARATHON to train for??!) I went to Urgent Care this morning only to be told that it's a "viral" thing and to keep taking the sudafed and maybe some ibuprofen for the pain. Awesome. Thanks.

Today is MUCH better though, I'm currently managing to stay awake at work (something that was undoable yesterday) and my face only feels like exploding a little. So, here's to sudafed, ibuprofen, and gallons of water and tea - - and to busting out some miles tonight.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

So You Want to Run a Marathon?

Yep, I'm going to run a marathon. On September 28th I will be in Moline, IL running 26.2 miles in the Quad Cities. If I don't die training first!

It's funny to think that I would want to run a marathon - let alone be able to do it - but I do and I can and I am able!

What's even more funny is that I don't think it's going to be the running that kills me, I think it's going to be knowing when to drink water and when to shove one of those nasty gel packs down my throat and when to eat a power bar and when to drink gatorade - that part is where I'm going to die. Who knew it would all be so complicated, just let me go out there and run 26.2 miles!

So, if anyone has suggestions on the gatorade/water ratio or anything else, throw 'em my way! This is all a new world to me, one that I love, so I don't want to die, thanks.

Officially I start my 16 week training program tomorrow, June 2nd (hello June, where have you been all my life) - Sundays are supposed to be a long run day, but today I'm taking it slow and if I'm up for a few miles in a little while I'm going to do them, if not, I'll rest and get ready for my 5 miles tomorrow morning at 5 am!

In other news, SATC was AMAZING. It's one of those movies that you walk out of feeling all warm inside and you can't wait until it comes out on DVD so you can buy it and watch it over and over again! I laughed, I cried, I sighed out was wonderful! The best part was that all 14 of my girlfriends and I got to sit together, in the best seats of the theather (the ones on the slanted level that are like 3 rows up and right in the middle) - we literally ran to get these seats and took some heat for having to hold some but in the end we were all together for a drama packed 2 1/2 hours of fun!

Here's to hoping SATC is out by September 29th because it would be a perfect thing to have on repeat as I lay in my recliner recovering from the marathon!