One of the most frustrating things about being an athlete with Addison’s Disease is that sometimes you can do everything right leading up to a race, taper, stay hydrated, take your meds, and yet somehow your body chemistry still drifts off and you end up with a performance that is less than your best.
This is exactly what happened to me this past Sunday during the Old Fashioned 10 miler in Foxboro. I went out a little fast but not completely crazy, yet by mile 3 I was fighting an intense internal battle not to pull up and stop completely.
I have a race later today. 10 miles. In February. In New England. Can’t wait.
One the biggest challenges I had with my Addison’s diagnosis and then the knee arthritis was being forced to slow down, and then, stop for a bit. I know many people have a tough time, for various reasons, calling them themselves an athlete. I had a really hard time not seeing myself as an athlete. For as long as I can remember sports and fitness were a daily part of my life. It was a huge piece of how I viewed myself, viewed the world, and approached my place in it. It wasn’t the only way, of course, but it was a big part to suddenly be missing.
I’m trying to teach the girls, or at least show, them that confidence is born out of doing hard things. So a 10-miler on a brisk February morning should be a good example. Their thing might not be sports, but the principles still apply. Rise to meet a challenge, don’t bring a misery mindset. I think we often mistake needing courage, confidence or self-esteem in order to try hard things. This feels backwards to me. We need to embrace a challenge and seek out difficult tasks to explore our own psychology and how we respond. Would I have the courage to take on fourth grade math, glitter slime, or the self-esteem for kitchen karaoke without it? I’m not sure I want to find out.
Writing is much like any other craft. It’s not exactly hard to do though it is hard to do well. Writing a book isn’t necessarily hard it just takes time. String enough dedicated, persistence days spent on anything, a book or a painting or training for a marathon and you will reach your goal.
If just sitting down each day feels a little vague to you, here are the 8 steps I use to keep writing word by word and day after day.
I’ll admit it. I really don’t mind the treadmill. Objectively, it’s a great training tool and lets anyone run year round without excuses. It’s especially good for beginners as you can control the pace, due it from the comfort of your home, and keep water or fuel nearby.
If you’re coming back from an injury or trying to start a new running habit I’m a firm believer in easing into your relationship with running to give your body time to adjust to the physical demands. The best way to stop a budding exercise habit in its tracks is to (over)do one workout and get so sore that you never want to use the treadmill again.
I spent the first seven years of my post-collegiate time in a job I really didn’t enjoy. And I knew it within days of starting. The fact that it took me almost a decade to pluck up the courage to leave probably tells you a lot about my personality. I do not like to make waves and I will suffer silently for long periods of time.
Cecilia is knee-deep in learning fractions and we’ve had the usual ups and downs. I’m trying to get her to understand the importance of asking questions. Sitting silently and suffering if you don’t know something is a huge waste of time. If you’re not asking questions, you’re probably not challenging yourself. Or, if you have all the answers, you are likely quite satisfied with yourself in your comfort zone. Neither is good.
Asking questions is a key part of learning a new skill and moving forward. I do not want them to be like me, too scared, shy or proud to ask for help and then suddenly look back at a huge swath of seven years of wasted time.
Its been a solid year now that I’ve been regularly lifting weights and doing strength training to support my running and triathlon habit. What started as a necessary evil to rehab my knee has morphed into a necessary habit. In the offseason, I’ve been regularly doing strength work twice a week. Last season, I dropped that to once a week with more stretching and bodyweight exercises.
The weights have given me more speed, more stamina, and stronger ligaments and tendons allowing me to stay active with my arthritic knee. This gym work (along with smarter recovery time as a master’s athlete) has led to an uptick in the consistency of my training, and that has led to an improvement in my face results, including a new 10k PR last year at age 41.
I mean, you could eat this all be yourself, but let me warn you even my dessert crazy 9 year old begged off when she could have kept going. This cast iron cookie is one serious indulgence and best served sliced up in decadent wedges for a party or eaten with at least eight spoons around a communal family table. The family that eats dessert together can solve anything!
This dessert is quick and easy to make and can handle almost endless number of add-ins to customize it to your own personal tastes. This recipe is just a guide.