Thursday, January 24, 2013

Our essential selves

The thing I love about running is its simplicity.

You don't need make up, a personal trainer, a class, or equipment. Just some clothes and shoes, and you're good to go.

This is as bare-bones as an activity can get and I love that through my training I know I can tough out almost any condition nature throws out at me. Most recently I've ran in icy conditions, rainy conditions, tropical conditions, and at home to more temperate weather.

Moreover, I have very positive memories and associations with specific runs. Like the 10+ miler I ran a year or so ago to the mall and went shopping. Or 13+ miler with girlfriends I adore. Or the tremendously hilly 10k I ran with my husband that I nearly quit. Or the 5k obstacle course that reminded me how afraid I am of  heights. Or the very first race I ever completed: a full marathon at 26.2 miles in Honolulu. I could go on and on...

The gist of this post is that running (outdoors not the dang dreadmill) is more than exercise to me. It is going out and being part of nature. It is a form of active meditation. Most importantly it is a means for my subconscious to make its desires known. And lastly, it is a sure-fire way for me to hear what my essential self wants.

As such, recent events have me tabling my training plan for spontaneity. As long as my mileage is within a certain range and I throw in an easy run, a tempo, and a long run, I feel good. Wait not just good but strong and wholesome. In every way.

The intelligent and like-able Martha Beck defines our "essential selves" as who we are at our very core. The quiet voice inside of us who steers us to safety, happiness, and contentment. In contrast our "social selves" is our outer shell that we use to interface with the world. The intention of our "social selves" can be muddied with other people's expectations of us. Again, according to Beck, the way we find true contentment (which she defines as our "North Star") is to have our essential selves and social selves exist harmoniously.

Here's a link to the book I'm talking about:

About two weeks ago during my long run at Coyote Hills, I kept hearing in my head "I am athlete." Being attuned to my individual intuition I knew this to be my essential self asserting itself, quietly but clearly. And of course, she was right on cue, while on a long run doing my favorite activity in my favorite place at that.

The first thought I had was Geez, my essential self has poor grammar, LOL. But as always that little voice was spot on. Most recently, I have been feeling, acting, and thinking like an athlete. And you know what? I like it. I like it a dang lot.

To me, as a runner, life is one big run. There are hills, ditches, flat terrain, rocky terrain and hey, don't forget mother nature. Sometimes she is a m/f'r. JK. Not really.

What I'm saying is this: keep running. Or moving or walking or dancing or ujamming or biking or swimming. Whatever floats your boat, just keep moving. And most importantly MOVE FORWARD.

There will be excruciating hills. But there will also be bliss. Embrace them all and you will emerge stronger, wholesome, and content.

No matter what m/f'rs throw at you, you will come out on top.

Just listen to that small voice.

You'll be happy you did.

I know I am.

Have charmed and blessed week, friends.

= )

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Aulani Photobook

Cuties at the Honolulu Airport ;D

Create your own custom photo books at

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