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Posts tagged ‘other’

Hitting 1,200 miles


A lot has happened in the last week, including a huge milestone for my running. I set out this year to run 1,000 miles by Dec. 31. I had missed the number by 70 miles last year, when I had no real goal.

I reached the 1,000 mark in October, with an average of nearly 100 miles a month. And it’s not even because I’m torturing myself. My longest run lately has been seven miles. It went well, but I’m also not training for a half marathon until February, so this is more “downtime” for me. This month I’m at 75, hoping to reach 100 in the next week or so before New Year’s Eve.

This number is a huge milestone for me, for some pretty obvious reasons.

The first is all the problems with anxiety and depression I’ve had since October. I could have stopped running completely, just given up. I didn’t. I kept going because I had a goal with the marathon.

I think, if not for California International Marathon, I might have given up.

The second is that I feel like a stronger now.

I’ve read recommendations that say a runner shouldn’t take on a marathon in the first year of regular running. I went totally against that. I ran my first half marathon in March 2011. That same year I decided, in June, to run California International Marathon. And I did. It was my first.

I felt stronger this year, but the rain and wind threw me off balance pretty significantly.

In any case, I’ve now run three marathons. I’ve also done a six-hour endurance run.

Many things paved my way to 1,000. But my crediting resilience for getting me to 1,200. By the end of this week, I’ll likely have run 300 more miles than I did last year. I’m excited to get there too.

I mentioned that a lot of things happened this week, including me going back to work.

I’ll sum up the first two days with one word: tough.

It was really, really hard to be back. When I first walked in the building my heart beated fast, my body got tense and my head pounded a little. But I seemed to get through it, even when it was uncomfortable. There were many points when that was the case. I felt unsure. I felt threatened. Waves of paranoia hit me.

People keep telling me it will get better. But I came home crying on Friday night, frustrated and tired, feeling more ostracized than ever. I knew it would be hard. I didn’t know it would be this hard. I go back again tomorrow. Another day to try. Another day to challenge myself to be present, to pull my confidence together and get through it.

I don’t know a lot of things right now, but I’m sure of one — I’ll keep running this marathon-like race to get better.


What I’ve been up to, in photos, from the past few days…


For Christmas, my grandmother gave me some money (early) to purchase a desk from World Market. I found out, a couple days later, that the desk was no longer available. So I searched for something similar and came up empty.

So instead, I opted to finally get a painting I was given from my maid of honor and best friend for my wedding framed. It had been in my bedroom for the past few years. It was supposed to be done on Dec. 8, but the craft store was running a little behind.


My friend’s daughter had her sweet sixteen birthday party last night. I haven’t been to a birthday party that big since I was in high school. I found some photo booth props online for download and printed them out and put them together for the party. My favorite was the Batman-type one.


I got a hair cut the other day, much needed, and realized I also needed an update on my hair color. I went to Target, where all cheap chicks buy their hair color. Too bad I couldn’t find the “chocolate cherry” that I had used earlier this year.

Instead I found a mahogany color. It’s a little darker, which looks awesome.

And only $7.99.

A big plus was this time around, I didn’t get hair dye all over my clothes, or my towels. I didn’t even get any on my running clothes the next day. I normally go a brown color similar to my natural color, but figured I’d try something warmer these past two times.


I bought shelves some time ago for one of our guest bedrooms so that I could put up my collection of “monsters” from the past couple years. I kept waiting for my husband, though, to put them up. On Friday, I decided that it was time for me to take matters into my own hands.

So I did. I grabbed the level and had these shelves up in about 20 minutes. The monster collection is no on display.


To cap off the past couple days, we headed to the sweet sixteen. I’m lucky I’ve been feeling a lot better lately, especially with the anxiety and depression plaguing me. I have an appointment Wednesday to, potentially, go back to work later in the week.

While I am relieved on one hand, I’m also incredibly scared.

I’m trying to put together a training plan in the next day or so for the Rock ‘n’ Roll Pasadena Half Marathon. There’s a pretty significant hill right at the beginning. Last year, I ran a horrible 2:48 race. It sucked. I was tired and pissed off for most the race.

Before that, though, I have a January 10K.

I was considering signing up for another 10K, one I’ve done for the past few years, but decided against it. I just can’t right now. I need to take some time off to reconsider my training plans, including what I’m going to do to train for the San Francisco Marathon.

I’m also still toying with the idea of signing up for the San Luis Obispo Marathon, which happens in April.

So a lot is still in flux. But, I’m running again. I’m feeling good about my runs. And they don’t feel labored. So I’m over the post marathon slump. Finally.

Worst. Marathon. Ever.

No. I didn’t run a marathon and forgot to tell on here. Though, if there was a marathon that offered a medal of Domo, I’d be all in. Like right now.

The marathon I’m running right now isn’t even one I have to lace up my Nikes for. It’s the marathon happening in my life.

If you could equate a lifetime to 26.2, I would be hitting “the wall” relatively early. Right now, I’m hitting it everyday.

Simple things are hard at first. Deciding when to wake up? Difficult. Getting out of bed? Tough. Getting in the car to drive? Scary. Trying to have some semblance of life before the panic attack? Seemingly impossible.

Five days after it happened, I realized I was different.

“Did I have a breakdown?” I asked my mom.

She responded in the affirmative.

Well crap.

A friend the other day referred to it as “the episode.” People ask me how I am. They don’t know that by the time they see me, I’ve usually had to overcome four or five moments of sheer terror before I can even get myself going in the morning.

I’m not going to lie, I’m not doing well. I thought, three weeks out, I’d be better. I thought the confidence in my voice would return. I thought I’d be cleared to return to work. I thought this would all be past me.

Yesterday marked the first time since “the episode” (sounds funny like that doesn’t it?), that I was able to talk about it without completely breaking down. Progress? Yes. Enough? No.

I got in my car on Monday to go to the store only to sit in it for 20 minutes while I figured out what, exactly, was making me so worried. Why was I so anxious?

I’m told I have to retrain my mind to get past the objections and the fear. I told my therapist that I’d been avoiding filling my gas tank up in my car. She asked why. Because I’d have to get a full tank. Then I’d have to wash the window. Then it would just be better to wash the whole car. And what if, at the gas station, I realized I needed something from the store? I’d have to go.

It sounds irrational as I type it. But I still don’t want to go get gas.

It took me six days to make a phone call necessary to my recovery. Six days. I would normally not have a problem picking up the phone.

A letter from work tells me I’m “required” to apply for disability. Fine. Doing the actual paperwork was a lesson in humility.

I couldn’t get through the little red boxes for days. And all I was doing was entering my name and other basic information.

What happened to me? Where did I go?

Today I’m angry about it. Today I’m upset that the people who should have noted a change in my behavior instead ignored it. Today I’m heartbroken because there were so many chances for someone to intervene.

I didn’t hide it. Not at all. My self-destruction was evident. I joked about my anxiety initially. It’s not so funny now. Not when it’s become paralyzing.

I was told to journal my thoughts. That part is easy. In written words, it flows. I feel more normal than I typically do. I’m able to reach a part of me that seems distant. But in person, I’m still clinging for familiarity. I can be in larger environments, because anonymous people don’t bother me.

But the thought of signing up for a local 10K Turkey Trot? I don’t even want to go there. I’ll see people I know. People who read this blog. People who want to ask how I’m doing. And I’ll shut down.

In Kindergarten I had a teacher who pin notes on my back so I’d remember to take it home to my parents. I’m tempted to pin a note to myself that says “leave me alone” and leave it at that.

I’m trying to grasp this in a way that will help me see through it, so I know there will eventually be an end to all of this. That’s where the marathon comes in. But this one is much worse than San Diego. This one doesn’t just rub your feet raw, it also hurts your lower back and breaks your will. This marathon is mean. And it knows it to.

So how do you attack a mean marathon? Training. Lots of training. Distance runs. Speed work.

It’s like running a race and powering through the water stops where they’ve run out of water, or where you can’t feel your toes anymore.

You just keep going. Right?