I have been running a lot lately. At first, it killed me. Like, running two miles on the treadmill was torture. How could I be so out of shape? I have been exercising pretty regularly over the years, but running five miles in college nearly 15 years ago was very different than running two miles 15 years and four babies later. So, I ran. I ran with Hailey and my friend, Renee and Sheila. I ran at 7 AM with a running group. I ran in "feels like -13 degrees, 6 miles that day. I ran hills, one I nicknamed "evil hill". I ran through snow. I ran in yaktraks which are spiked running shoe attachments to go on ice. I ran through neighborhoods I had never been in, up and down dead end streets just to see what was there. I ran past my kid's school and waved three times, one wave for each kid. I ran while listening to LDS General Conference talks, mostly President Uchtdorf, President Hinckley and President Monson. Later on when I didn't need talks to distract me, I ran as long as I could just listening to my own thoughts. And forming thoughts that went beyond, "I am about to die." or "My lungs are about to explode." And I found a focus and I found myself enjoying it. I found that I loved that hour of peace and quiet, with just me and my thoughts and my head. Doing something I never thought I could do and feeling like I could keep doing it for a long time, just because I wanted to. Not because I wanted to be a buff mom or an ultra marathoner, but because I could focus on what was really important. As I ran, I found that only the most important thoughts were ones I thought about: my marriage, my mothering, my family goals. And I would learn something new from the conference talks and be able to think about how I could use that in my life and in my family's life. It has been an eye opening experience. I feel stronger afterwards. I feel happier afterwords. More positive, more potential and the winter didn't bother me as much. All in all, I felt more focused. And at the end of a busy mom day, that focus is hard to come by. I will run those miles and keep running them to get that focus and hopefully my thoughts don't go back to "lungs exploding".
Had a nice springlike day in January and my kids rollerbladed and rode bikes with me while I ran. It was great to be able to push each other on and have talks about perseverance and finishing goals. They are a lot of my motivation.