Perfection is overrated – first day of summer session

4 06 2012

     Well – I had my couple of weeks off! Last term was an academic bust for the most part, but a huge shift in priorities for me. It has to happen.
      As the line goes “everybody has a past” and, like many to varying degrees, mine has been wrapped around me like suffocating plastic wrap. Some of it I have wrapped myself and other bits were strapping taped in place by others when I wasn’t paying attention. Then there is keeping it because it felt like safe bubble wrap against future pain.
      There are lessons to learn, but learn them and motor. I had been so used to the baggage I had finally neatly stacked in the corner of my psychic living room, that I kind of didn’t see it anymore. Last term, a handful of things came to the forefront that reminded me of the baggage that simply needed to go.
      My apparent desire for perfection lead to Pondering & Procrastination which lead to Missed Opportunities & A Wake-Up. Many folks don’t get that.
     My perfectionism was getting in the way of my enjoying the quirkiness of life.  Yeah – me the Procrastinating Perfectionist.
     I tried to quiet things down by finally going on a course of ADHD meds which left me nearly immobile and not really giving a crap about anything. Two 32’s on major course exams gave me the wake up I needed.
     Cut losses. Cut perfection. Cut the crap and get simpler.
      Everything unto my world had to be groundworked properly again. This was a safety mechanism I had to try to control for the variables. The problem is that some of the variables became the crazies taking over.  Because I had too many balls in the air, I became overwhelmed. 
      How can one move forward with so many things that turned into emergencies? DANGER MISS LIZZY!!! Protect yourself.
     What am I doing?
1. Letting some of the balls fall. They are usually the perceptions and nonsense of others anyway. 

2. Continuing the massive clear-out but including drips and drabs and a whole lot of paper documentation

3. A friend of mine sent me a promo photo from when we were kids. It got me thinking about a lot of things that I don’t really look at because a lot of my life centered on documenting the world around me. Time for me to be in that world.

4. Dealing with what I can and asking for help on what I can’t. Action far more important.

     There are a lot of opportunities that my pondering perfectionistic procrastination has caused me to put aside thinking they will very there later. Not so. Life moves on.
     A person from my past said “Lizzy, I just figured you would always very there because you always were. Then I turned around to see that I never put into the friendship, just took. I decided you belonged in a box as you went through things, but you turned that box into a planter.”
     Life is a lot simpler when we allow it to be. I have things, like everyone, that really hurt and people who think they are being protective by not being open to change and different modes if thought.
      So, first day back into the last year of second undergraduate degree finds me a lot lighter. Let the games begin.


Back to writing and training — starting with a track club …. rewrite

7 03 2012


### Well – thank you to a wonderful reader for some errors. I type while on the train to campus on my Android and sometimes biff it!! Cheers — LS ###
Winter is nearly over in Denver. I have done a great deal of thinking and listened to the input of friends who are also professionals in my next industry of fitness. They know that I am bifurcated like many adult athletes — I want to double up my training but am smart enough to know better. Listening to that “Know better” side has been the rub. Of course, my studies at Metro State, Denver has been giving me the scientific underpinning to force myself to listen.

Many know that one of my grandfathers was a mathemagician and scientist and the other worked his way through industries seeing the future and ended up at the top of part of the entertainment industry. I would like to say I am being guided by the best of both of them.

The entertainment industry grandfather told me early on to investigate the organizations I want to join because by joining I am linking my name and reputation to them. He had friends blacklisted during the Red Scare but also learned that some didn’t know the negative tendrals of the organizations joined.

I have made mistakes, but can extradite myself after doing continued due diligence. In simple language “doing my homework.” I am particularly careful now that fitness is my new industry.

Audio was so much easier.

I have been looking for a place to be motivated and belong as I return to racewalking. I am reworking everything as I undo the bad habits from working around injury.

I have known of the Phidippides Track Club in Denver for a number of years. My friend and speedy sneaker Jay S. had mentioned the club to me after I came in from the Colfax Half Marathon when I was starting to ride high on my racewalking. I remember saying at the time that I wasn’t sure if I belonged. He said that the club had had racewalkers in it and that I was more than welcome. All I could see was a bunch of super fast racers knowing what they are doing and smiled saying “Someday, Jay. Someday!” He smiled and said “You are welcome anytime.”

Uh ok. Heard that before then felt completely demoralized and outclassed.

Flash forward nearly three years, enduring a debilitating injury load, and a little knocking of sense into my head later … Facebook. Is there really a place for me with the track club known fondly as “Phids”?

In the same week that coach Brian Cooper and Coach Jim Leppik reminded me (in two different time zones) that 5km is an endurance sport, 2-a-days are stupid, Coach Chris Tetro joined the chorus reminding me of my concern about needing direction, Jay put out the reminder that Phids was starting. I printed out the application.

I spoke with my crew. My biggest fear was that I am so slow right now that I would not be welcome. Their fifth group is about a 9 minute mile. My goal for this year is to get faster but dumping 5 minutes without running?

I know speedy sneakers that are in Phidippides – honestly supportive friends. I heard my grandfather and did my homework. Steve, who sets the track workouts, is a trainer of highly competitive athletes. And I trust Jay, Scott K, and Mike Q implicitly as they would prefer to see me happily chasing them in races …. and them cheering me in another hour later!

Jay wrote a lovely note of introduction to Steve. And after I met him, Steve reminded me not to be an idiot!! Big smiles from friends as they took off for their 2 mile time trial.

Yeah – this is a good place.

I watched the workout. Know that I have my lane and have a goal of being able to competitively join the regular workouts.

What I needed was to feel welcome and learn by both helping and doing. 

Really looking forward to my Tuesdays with Phidippides! Of course, I will be missing at least one a month to go to Broomfield to train with High Altitude Racewalk Team.

Will keep you posted!!

Woke up crabby and …

26 01 2012


Even my bookbag is telling me to get back to bed!!

Seriously – first full week of school finishes today and I am tired. I recall a supposedly very learned employer of mine scoffing at a Ph.D in “PE” saying it was a waste. I am working harder and learning more applicable stuff than I have in years!

It is the getting up at 3-4 am that is taking getting used to.

I use that morning time right now as “me” time. I have to train after classes so between classes I am in the library with my android medical dictionary ap open!

I am not really complaining, just glad that I am taking time for me and putting me first. I know that there are those who find that kind of rude, but I am respecting my free time, I have to hope others will too. I am trying to get better at respecting others’ time by scheduling mine better.

That reminds me – I have to write a friend!

Train done.

Tuesday Train to School

24 01 2012


Yeah I know I need to finish Disney report, but waiting on a photo.

This weekend was the 50K Men’s Racewalk Olympic Qualification race. When I think about 31 miles in less than 4:10 being “too slow” to send more than one guy to the Olympics for Racewalk, my head spins. I don’t know many runners who can handle the distance in that speed especially if they know they are being judged on every step of their 1.25 km loop and can be disqualified in the last meters!

Also at this race was Erin Talcott-Taylor who qualified to race with the boys using their qualifying time. In her case, as she set/broke American Women’s Racewalk records along the way, she had to finish without being disqualified for them to count.

Back in my little realm, I am plodding away building base. You have to have a solid foundation upon which to draw from.

This semester is 4 days of solids in a row. I have some holes in the day, but with Denver having unpredictable weather, I am having to split up longer walks among treadmills when I can get them, runner machines and outside.

I learned after my swim class that I might have my nutrition set for school but not for when I push myself. I have a bad habit of “not counting ” phys ed classes into my caloric expenditure.

Yeah Coach Brian Cooper is figuratively bouncing my head off a wall on that one!

So – today it is three bags —
1. Book bag
2. Snacks/lunch
3. Books/notes loaning friends.

Weighs a ton!! There is a reason why I am trying to catch trains early enough to work out 1/2 hr before classes!


Yeah I know

17 01 2012


It is 0-dark-30 and maybe 5 degrees F if I am lucky. New school schedule finds me having to get on campus for 8 am physical education classes. Yeah – check my sanity at the door for winter!

The trains between 6:45 and 8 am are packed. I do have a way around it, as my commuting friends in NYC and SF can understand. Always have a way around just in case. However with Denver, there are only two lines.

First of the semester I never know what I need. This term, I am swapping off books to friends, prepping for properly training using the campus as a base, and have no clue what I left in my locker from last term. It is anyone’s guess if I remember the padlock combination!

I am looking forward to the training classes. Although my times weren’t stellar in Disney (yes I will get the Marathon posts finished) , they were consistent and I hit my goals more from a sport psychology standpoint. This sets me up better for the long bits of training I have coming up.

Jim Leppik sent me my schedule through February. I promised to make sure I contact and I have started a proper log for this. He, like me, has known my confidence has been in the toilet, so we are in a good place now.

Brian Cooper had me send Jim’s schedule to him. I had created an ambitious weights plan for myself, but I need direction. He is where I am going at this ungodly hour of the morning.

Train –> Train -> school.

Thoughts from the hammock – yes I did remember pants – barely.

14 01 2012


I picked up a pair of those old fashioned ice bottles from the dollar store. I didn’t realize how needed they were! All the advice I got on my first blood blister was “pop the sucker ” but Coop texted me saying to leave it alone. Makes sense because for the area to fill with blood and lymph there have to be deep tears.

Breakfast was nice. I brought half home and ate it when I got up from my nap. I was thinking about spending time at the pool, but just dumped my legs in before my nap.

The room was stupidly hot and I am too brain dead to fix it. I probably should call the front. 

I packed a picnic of sorts and started out for Hammock Row. I came back quickly when I realized I was waddling about in a race shirt and panties!

I really need a baby-sitter!


These first of the year races are rough but I really have learned my lesson with non-training.

I wouldn’t mind a beer, but it is dehydrating. I still have that headache.

Tomorrow has the added bonus of being a relay. I have to get to Patti in time for her to finish. No pressure.

I am looking forward to being a competitor again.


Post Half – Middle Race Done.

14 01 2012

As Patti & Roger dropped me off, my phone alarm started going off in the bottom of my check bag – Lt. Worf saying “Today is a good day to die.” Echoing off the ladies room walls!


I was right to hit an early bus, but it was a standing ride to the start of the race. People were ok, but I felt sort of disconnected. I realized quickly that I was the only solo flier on the bus. Sigh.

I have five gels. Overkill, I know, but I am dealing with 80+% humidity. I also have a pocket full of coffee lollies and gum. I also have two sets of Hammer Endurolytes and Race Caps. Interestingly, I now know how this is to work. Thank you A and P classes! I separated the sets with one of those HUGE Perpetium chew things. If I need that, I am going to need the second set of pills!  Bottles are Perpetium.

I am wearing the yellow NF colors for my friend Melisa. The shorts are really comfy and I might buy another pair if they are on clearance on the USATF site.

Tony Horton was doing the pre-race exercises. Stretches all around. Really? Sigh.

Patti and I hooked up pretty quickly. Her amazing husband Roger took my check bag. He finds her on the route. That is so amazingly cool. And that is true love to me.

I was ok with the temperature. Patti was wrapped in a blanket. We walked up to the corrals and chatted. It was really nice. When we got there, I started the long process of warming up my legs.

I told Patti and Roger about my foot. Time to trust people. I am sick of powering through and limping over finish lines. Let runners do that. I want to finish strong with my head up.

As we were standing there, a huge guy walk directly across both my feet with most weight on my right
Oh my freaking God!  I tried to say nothing, but Patti was right there and saw it. The guy didn’t mean to do it – no harm/no foul – but Patti must have seen my eyes peal to the back of my head. I went from my level 5 pain to a level 8 with a bullet.

By the time we got to the front, I was unable to roll off the outside of my foot. Um – not good. I was close to the last corral, so there was a very real possibility I wasn’t going to finish.

Lis – put your head back in a good place! .This was really going to be a training walk with a lot of people.

The moment we started, I rolled to the outside of my foot and let Patti take off.  It isn’t like we were going to race together, but I didn’t think I would be in pain in the first steps.

One of my goals was to start out slowly … check.

Out of the two usual Disney races, the 1/2 is the most boring to me. A long time on the road, one park,  more road, Epcot traffic, home. This year was darker than I remember. I kept my heart rate between 150 and 160. Probably 14 minute miles with some bursts.

I kept my head, didn’t get too distracted, but realized just how much traffic I was stuck in. I also noticed how little endorphins I get. That will change, I hope.

Patti pops a gel before the race starts. I usually go with every 5K. I popped 1/2 a Hammer fruit gel at the start, and the other half at mile 2. Miles 5 and 10 got a Mocha Cliff. They are very different products in consistency and how they affect me.

I popped the caps around mile 7. And was nearly bottle dry by the time I finished.  There was a lot of traffic in the water stop, so I blew several off.

My biggest race specific goals were those hills. When I came out of the Disney park, I checked in with myself. People started moaning about the hill. I shut out their negative energy with thoughts of my friends who have thrived after brain tumors, cancers and other situations that, quite honestly, should have killed them. I thought about how I want to learn more about their lives.

It worked. I just spun my wheels. It wasn’t pretty, but I kept passing these guys and bruising their egos a bit! I gave myself goals to get to and hit every one.

I think I inadvertently irritated a few people motoring along and singing “Supercalifragiliaticespialidocious” with the tune being played. Cool. Checked off keeping a conversational pace.

I got to the golf course where I would be ending my leg of the relay and my foot felt funny. This time my left. Please!! Definately a blister. Not much I can do now.

Still trotting along. Happily present. Checking in. Knowing that damned curve is coming up. Ok – I can do it. I saw the off-ramp and negotiated it wide. I would have preferred the inner edge, but it was seriously banked. I didn’t need the budding blister to rip and my right foot still hurt.

As I hit Patti’s triple hills leading in to EPCOT, I kept rolling. I wondered what it would be like to have someone like Roger so supportive of what I am doing – not wanting to overshadow it. I am sure I will find a runner someday. I just have unique taste – and with my sense of humor …

Around the corner and down into the mass of humanity. I was flipping through Disney TV in my insomniac haze. They had a bedtime story channel about their newest character: a sweet curly Teddy bear. As we came in to the park, I saw Mickey’s Teddy Bear and he was all alone!! I stepped off the course to give him a big hug.

Back in the sea, walking ok. Down to the Christmas Tree, swing around and go to the choir. When I came around the corner, I knew my lack of training was working against me as was the sand pebbles I picked up someplace along the way. Head up – walk strong. Hit watch on the far side of the pads. Watch time: 03:02:59 Watch Distance: 13.28

After hanging with my friends, I went home to assess the damage.

I have never had a blood blister before. this was the worst of the group.