This may be a mish mash of random thoughts so hold on to your hats and try to keep up.
What a week it was being away from my husband and daughter, but a few lessons were learned which I think is a good thing. I think no matter what happens in life – good or bad – you should be able to take something away from it – learn from it. If you aren’t quite up to speed with my week, you can check out my previous posts about spending time with my mother and the bullshit I dealt with when I got there.
Lesson learned: Anger and cussing can be beneficial
Anyone that knows me very well, knows that I’m not an angry person. I’m not angered by little things. I like to think that I am patient and kind and tend to think the best of other people. My fuse is pretty long and if I do get angry, the keg that blows is pretty small and is pretty short lived. This week provided me the opportunity to get in touch with my angry side. I think I used the word motherfucker more in a 24 hour period than I have in the past 24 years. It was quite impressive, actually, and felt really good to get it off my chest. I thought I could drop some f-bombs past the 20 mile mark of a long run, but this experience topped that. I’m going to call it “ultra-training”.
Lesson learned: Flexibility is key
Another thing about me that you may or may not know is that I try to maintain a vegan/plant based diet. My oldest daughter has been vegetarian or vegan since 9th grade, so when she came home during her first summer break from college, I decided it would be my first “summer of vegan eating”. I soon discovered how much better I felt on a vegan diet and the positive effect it had on my running and my weight. Dairy and I had parted ways several years prior due to the discovery of my lactose intolerance – discovered 30 minutes prior to boarding an airplane after slamming a box of chocolate milk. My husband graciously took the blame for the odors emanating from our aisle on that 4 hour flight.
During my trip last week, I at least tried to eat healthy – oatmeal, watermelon, pineapple, veggies and hummus, Chipotle. The days at the hospital weren’t too bad – they actually had vegan options on the salad bar, like beans and tofu, but when my momma wanted to have some pizza together, I put my vegan preferences aside and shared a slice of veggie pizza with her. I didn’t have anyone to sleep with at night, so decided the small amount of cheese wreaking havoc in my gut was worth the large amount of happiness it brought my mom. But that turned into morning trips to Dunkin Donuts for chocolate glazed Munchkins, combination pizza at McKinner’s Pizza Bar, shrimp tacos at Platte River Bar and Grill and some sort of luscious chocolate brownie thing with a glass of wine at Applebee’s. Let me be clear – I enjoyed all of those meals and enjoyed the company even more. I could have found vegan options and remained strict with my vegan preferences, but emotional stress is quite draining, and my mind was not interested in thinking that hard after a 10-12 hour shift at the rehabilitation facility. I learned a long time ago to pick my battles, so when life happens and circumstances aren’t ideal, it’s important to be flexible.
Lesson learned: The Healthcare system has nothing to do with being healthy
I could not believe some of the stupid shit I saw and heard in the hospital and rehab facility. This could take up an entire blog post so I’ll just share my top two.
One: My mom tells the nurse that I’m a runner and have run a marathon. I chimed in that I had also run a 50k because, let’s face it, it’s kind of fun to brag about that. The nurse responds with, “Running that far can’t be healthy for you.”. Are you serious? He is tending a floor full of patients suffering from chronic conditions mostly caused by inactivity and he thinks running long distances is unhealthy? Dumb ass.
Two: The food fed to patients in healthcare facilities has little to no nutritional value, is loaded with sodium and sugar, and has no fiber in it. No wonder they feed them all a stool softener because that food is going to need all the help it can getting out of the body.
Lesson learned: Where there’s a will, there’s a way
Yes, I know that’s not original, but it’s a good one. I only managed just over 8 miles running last week, but I still found a way to keep moving. If I had a car for the day, I parked at the back of the parking lot. When I needed coffee and fruit, I walked to the store instead of driving the mile. I climbed the stairs to the 6th floor at the hospital and climbed the flights up and down whenever I was on the phone. If mom was sleeping, I would do wall sits, lunges and squats in her room. Before crawling into bed at night, I planked and push-upped. It wasn’t much, but it was better than nothing.
The highlight of my activities was getting a 3 miler in with my sister, Jolie. She took me to one of her favorite trail spots and we ran a few easy miles together. It was so nice to see some new scenery and have someone to run with. She has been running for just a year, but ran the Hot Chocolate 15k and the Rock n Roll Denver 10k in the past month. I’m so proud of her progress, and I loved spending the time together on the trail.
Miscellaneous lessons learned:
Native Roots is not the same as Native Foods – the only similarity is that they both sell brownies.
Sexting with your significant other is lots of fun.
All of the rooms at the Courtyard by Marriott have the same pictures in them.
Sometimes it takes seeing the dysfunctional and ugly in others to appreciate the functional and beauty in your life.
I’m ready for the new week to start – ready to get back on my running schedule, back to my clean eating, back to sleeping in my own bed with a wonderful husband.
Thanks for reading and sharing.