Monday, November 16, 2009

People need joy. Quite as much as clothing. Some of them need it far more.
--- Margaret Collier Graham

The joy of running. The joy of Fall. The joy of love and laugther. The joy of a good book. Right now, I am experiencing all, and I feel very blessed. Nothing extraordinary or new is happening, just training and living, but it all feels joyful. Today is supposed to be a rest day, but I anticipate some schedule problems at the end of the week, so I'm doing an easy 6 just to put it in the bank - no OCD here! While I'm running on the treadmill, I have a brisket cooking, making me simultaneously want to eat and run at the same time!

Currently, I am reading "Lit," by Mary Karr. Now, if you read "The Liar's Club," you know that she had one totally messed up childhood. It was a great, albeit painful, memoir. Her new book is how, after the publication of her hugely successful memoir, she spiraled down into alcoholism and depression and then came back out. I just love a good memoir! I will keep you posted on how it is.

I'm really trying to ramp up my training in hopes of a good solid race in December. I haven't raced since the Worlds in Italy last May. Yikes! As you know, ramping up for me just means more miles. I just can't get excited about speedwork or trails. I ran 31 with my friend Jim at Javelina a few weeks ago, but that was the extent of my trail running. It was fun, but not what I love to do. I still love reading my friends' blogs who are trail runners, because I am in awe of them, but I go back to my road running. This week, I should have 125-130 miles, depending on what happens over the weekend. The end of the year is approaching, so I need to keep going!

Okay, back to it. Hope everyone is getting some good runs in!

Happy running!

Friday, November 13, 2009

If people only knew the healing power of laughter and joy, many of our fine doctors would be out of business. Joy is one of nature's greatest medicines. Joy is always healthy. A pleasant state of mind tends to bring abnormal conditions back to normal.
--- Catherine Ponder

I just got off the phone with my sister, Linda, and we had a such a wonderful conversation. I had been fidgeting with something since yesterday, trying to figure it out, journaling about it, but finding no relief. So, I did what I often do when I can't get rational about something, I called my big sis. We spent the first part of the conversation with me kvetching about the intolerable situation, and then moved onto what I should do about it. By the end we were both laughing at the absurdity of my "problem" and marveled at how easily we can let negativity turn something minor into something major. My sister helped me laugh at myself, which in turn, help me put the issue in perspective. Laugter, again and again, saves me. In fact, I believe that unconditional love and laughter are the only two things in life that really matter.

So many new studies are coming out showing the benefit of laughter on both our physical, and mental, health. Seems that laughter can cure just about anything from depression to cancer. Amazing, huh?! There is something about changing your physical chemistry through laughter that acts like a potent medication. There is much anecdotal evidence of people cutting out negative input (the news, violent movies, depressing books, etc.) in their lives and only allowing positive images to enter their filter, who end up cured of all kinds of disease and mental illness. I find that fascinating. Norman Vincent Peale extolled the virtue of the power of positive thinking decades ago, and it seems like now, the research is supporting him. Cool!

So go out today and do something that makes you happy. Try to limit negative influences for just a day, and see if you feel the difference.

Happy running!