Wednesday, March 3, 2010

I Put It Out There, I Was Called On It, And Now It's Eating At My Brain

Yesterday I received a phone call from my good friend Alison. It had been months since I last talked to her so having the opportunity to chat and laugh with her over the phone was one of the highlights of the day. I had emailed her earlier in the day telling her how much I enjoyed the pictures she had sent of their recent family vacation to Disney World. She opened our conversation by saying I'd been on her mind lately, and the rest of the early part of our conversation went something like this.

Her: Well, I wanted to give you a call because you've been on my mind lately.
Me: Oh, really?
Her: Yeah. Remember that list you posted on your blog last fall?
Me: Yes . . .

(Brief interruption to tell you what was going on in my head at this exact moment, a moment when my mind immediately went to a very selfish place. "OMG," I thought, "I bet Gabe has won a trip to Disney through work. And since they just went and she remembered taking the girls to Disney is on my list, she's going to graciously offer the trip to us! What an amazing friend! Or maybe she's calling to tell me she's going to have another baby*. Both would be so awesome!")

(* I have no idea why my mind went there, but if anyone calls me out of the blue and is of childbearing age that's what instantly pops into my brain when they act as if they have something interesting or exciting to share. I think it's a byproduct of being surrounded by friends and family who have collectively birthed approximately 674 offspring in five year's time.)

Her: And you mentioned something about wanting to run a 5K, and a half-marathon . . .
Me: Yeah . . .

(My brain was suddenly screaming, "OMG, nooooo! Disney sounds like so much more fun!")

Her: . . . and maybe even a marathon . . .
Me: Um, yes, and where exactly are you going with this, Alison?

So here's one of my BFF's calling me out on one of my very own life goals, phoning to peer pressure me in a gentle, very loving way into joining her in a quest to run. Run long, oh so very long, distances no less. In front of crowds of people. My arm pits began to sweat immediately at the thought.

Little did Alison know I am the Queen of Excuses, able to come up with no less than five valid points as to why I can or can not accomplish a particular task. In this case:
  1. I would love to but I just don't have the time.
  2. I can't train at night because The General is at work
  3. We both know I am not a fan - actually, practically incapable - of waking up any earlier than absolutely necessary eliminating any hope of getting in runs before work.
  4. I just don't think I can do it.
  5. I'm so out of shape, where would I even start.
Then my BFF had to go all logical on me, once again gently and lovingly providing a rebuttal for every excuse I threw at her. Yes, finding the time would be very difficult, but it doesn't take a terribly long amount of time for most runs according to training schedules she's seen. She reminded me that although I may feel like I'm out of shape, it's not like I've been a total couch potato for the last two years. I've worked out intermittently and running after our children is good cardio. She's been researching training programs and they are well within our physical capabilities. And then, just when I thought she couldn't provide any more sound reasons why I should join her in this endeavor, she had to pull out the big guns:

If Oprah can run a marathon, then WE can run a marathon.

That one hurt, as the truth often does.

We left the conversation with me saying, "I'll think about it, but I doubt it will happen on my end. But you still should totally do it and I'll be there to cheer you on!".

I replayed my conversation with Alison to The General last night. He showed his support in the following ways:
  1. He laughed.
  2. He said he would not join me in training.
  3. When I told him he could totally do it, he responded with, "I know I could. I just don't want to".
  4. He basically gave me the impression that he does not think I will do it.
I thought about Alison's challenge the rest of the night and all of today. It's eating away at my brain, I'm telling you.

Because it was still fresh in my mind I went to work this morning and shared the conversation with Jen, my co-worker and sounding board. She did not help ease the peer pressure one little bit and instead shared that her and her husband are running the Bixby this summer and I should totally join them. "It will be so fun," she promised. What is this, gang up on The Mrs. week? Lay off already, people! Can't we start small, like tackling one of those beach destination goals on my list first? Is it really necessary to start with the most daunting, physically demanding, and challenging item on the list? When I stated this to Jen she, too, had to go all logical on me. "It's challenging, yes. But doing things that challenge you is GOOD for you". Why do my friends have to be so smart all the time?

So tonight, after picking up the girls, we headed to the library. Usually our first stop is the children's section. Tonight? We marched up the stairs to the reference section, straight to the aisle holding exercise related reading materials, and I picked up the book "Runner's World Complete Book of Women's Running". Later I'm going to read up on sample training programs, and then I'm going to eat some ice cream because the thought of actually committing to this idea is seriously stressing me out.

I'm taking very small steps. Teeny tiny even. I'm going to do a little research. I'll probably need to get some new running shoes. Perhaps a new sports bra and some running attire might also be in order. Pricing treadmills might be a good idea if I'm going to get really serious. Basically, I'm taking The General's approach to P90X with this whole half-marathon idea. And I suppose now that I've broadcasted all this I'm going to have many more of my friends and family holding me to it. It might have been a good idea to consider that before I started this post. I cave to peer pressure like a fat man sitting on a rickety folding chair.


The MC said...

We still have a treadmill for you! It sounds a little fun in theory, but...

Anonymous said...

running is the worst idea ever. people die from running it's true the internet told me.

Munchkin said...

i'll do it with you

flag girl said...


Rikki said...

I am training for a half-marathon in May and the program is very gradual. They even have you do a 5K and a 10K as part of your program (

What a perfect time to start running! The snow is melting and spring is around the corner! Look at it as an opportunity to put yourself first. You can do it! :D

Anonymous said...

I'll be your biggest cheerleader and I will yell so you can hear me.... I've done that before!
Those abs are shaping up already!
Mom Poke

Anonymous said...

I say DO IT!!! The run will be amazing - the training will be difficult at times but so worth it!! Bloomington has a 5 miler that the Doc, Tru stories, Flag girl and son, and the Jackie familys will be running in!! Join us!!

Tina said...

I'm with you Mrs - you better eat a whole pint of that ice cream while you think about it. And a bag of chips, too.

jen said...

Sorry to be logical, but peer pressure works man! C'mon you know you want to join us running up the big hill this summer! Besides, 7 miles is like half a half marathon!

Anonymous said...

Here some final thoughts on the idea of doing a half marathon: Kate was able to do it...surely if Kate can do it you can :)


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