Wednesday, August 5, 2009
During my first week of running I started having some mild shin splints. Nothing major, just some minor pain and aches Well, they have reared their hateful, painful little heads. Today's running training was to be 6 intervals of 90 seconds of running, with 2 minutes of walking in between. I was also in need of a 3 mile walk for the 3-day training. I decided to just put the two together, and finish up the runs with a little extra walking.......I made it through the runs, while they were each increasingly painful, I managed to finish them. I then finished my cool-down walk, and started up on my last mile of walking. And then things started to fall apart. It hurt, a lot, a whole whole whole lot. Despite this I kept telling myself I could make it. It was only 1 mile, and I could certainly finish up 1 silly little mile. Then, up in the distance I see someone walking, only the longer I watch him, the more I realise he isn't walking but staggering, and stopping, and staggering, oh yes, and Mr. McDrunkpants didn't have on any shoes. I then decide that I do NOT want to pass this man, and slow up a bit hoping he will go down a side street, and away from my path. only he does not, and I am still quickly gaining on him. Unfortunately slowing my pace has giving my shin time to scream at me. I start to think their are evil little men dancing on the nerve endings in my shin, and surely they are wearing spiked shoes. I have to turn early down my street and head for home. I am too afraid to pass sir drinksalot, and the pain is now so intense I am ready to sit down in the middle of the street and cry. So now I sit here, with you, my bloggy friends, and two bags of frozen veggies for the next 10 minutes. I am so disappointed. I want more than anything to be able to prove to myself that I can do this 5k in October, and I do understand that it is still a ways away, but if the pain continues with such intensity, I don't know if I will be able to run. And this my friends makes me very very very sad. I haven't given up yet, but things better improve.
Posted by Anna Lea at 9:27 PM
Monday, August 3, 2009
I have two very healthy, very fit friends Kate and Michele, who are committed to distance events like triathlons, the 3-day, and running events. They have been a huge part of keeping me motivated to continue with my training. My team captain for the 3-day decided she wanted to sign up for a marathon in February of next year, and pretty much talked me into the half-marathon. Before that though, there is a 5k in Jacksonville beach. In my mind a 5k is a good place to start. Now I know many of you think 5k, that's only 3.1 miles! My issue is, I don't run. I don't like it, it hurts, my lungs burn, my legs burn, my feet hurt in short, i think running sucks! But somewhere in my mind I keep saying why not. Start small, surely you can run for a minute. Build on that, one tiny second at a time. I am just now starting my second week of running, and even though I still don't like it so much. It is something I want to prove to that self-doubting voice that has lived in my head for so many years, that I CAN. My one minute of running, is now two, and next week 3. Slowly but surely I will build my bridge. Maybe when I am fit, and no longer lugging around an extra 90 pounds I'll compete in a triathlon with Kate. I can't say never anymore! And to think it all started with a little walk. OK so 60 miles isn't a little walk, but I remember months ago when a 3 mile walk was pure torture. Now a 7 mile walk is nothing to me. If only those stupid blisters would quit rearing their ugly little heads!!!
Posted by Anna Lea at 10:53 PM
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
Two Roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Why would you walk 60 miles in 3 days? Why would you give up your own free time to raise $2300? Why would to sacrifice your time, money, and energy? Because I have to travel this road.
My sister was everything. I found myself through her. She was an amazing scholar, writer, and strong beautiful woman. Fate, and cancer stole her away from me.
I can clearly remember the day she called to tell me she had cancer. Devastated is not nearly a strong enough word to explain how I felt. In my family, cancer is a death sentence. My uncle died of leukemia less than a month after his diagnosis. My father died of lung cancer, after a long, painful battle. And now, now my healthy beautiful sister was calling me from 1000 miles away to tell me she had sarcoma. I did not dare tell her how afraid I was. The pain I felt knowing she was going to have to call each of my family members and tell them she had cancer sucked the very breath out of my chest. I WOULD NOT CRY to her. She did not need my tears; she had enough of her own. I knew at that very moment she was going to be lost to me forever. Everyone I knew tried to convince me to be positive, and I tried to be. By all outward appearances it looked as though I felt she would overcome this, all the while there was a burning pit in my stomach that nagged at me, and told me otherwise. I was positive for her, knowing that being in a hopeful, healthy environment would improve her chances.
My sister, being the Bolshevik that she was, named her tumor Fred. We hated Fred. Drop dead Fred. They biopsied Fred, they cut Fred out in an operation that would ravage my poor sister’s arm. But Fred left Fredlettes. Fred had moved his rebel colony to her lungs. Not good. Not good at all. Yet, somehow, she still faced this with poise, grace, and an amazingly strong will and determination. She would get the Fredlettes too. The doctors tried to eliminate the hateful things. Chemo, radiation, painful surgery to cut out parts of her lung. But there were just too many, and they grew too fast. No amount of toxic cocktails, and slices with a knife would kill Fred or his minions.
My sister STILL did not feel sorry for herself, nor did she want anyone’s pity. She was so grateful just to have every day, no matter if it was a bad day full of pain, or a good one watching the Kentucky Derby with me all decked out in derby hats.
Over 2 years Fred did his damage, until finally on December 14, 2008 at the young age of 32 she flew up to heaven on the wings of angels. My rock was gone. I suddenly did not know who I was. I stood alone, and afraid to move forward. All of my life stopped. I was suddenly living in limbo. For many years I had contemplated the Breast Cancer 3-Day. And many times, I walked the other way.
I do not remember how I found out the actual date of the event in 2009. But there it was, the last day, November 1. Screaming at me. The last day of the walk in 2009 was my sister’s wedding anniversary. But, not only was the walk on her anniversary, she lived in Tampa for many years.
So there I stood, at a fork in the road, waiting, in limbo. When suddenly, fate dropped this gem in my lap. I knew it was a sign. Some higher power was at work, telling me that the path forward was right there staring me in the face. I could not walk away this time.
Many people do not understand my motive. “Your sister had sarcoma not breast cancer, why are you walking for breast cancer?” Cancer is cancer folks. It sucks, it hurts, it kills, and it takes families and rips them down. If by raising $2300 and walking 60 miles would save one single family from this fate, it would be worth it. This is not to say that facing this road did not scare the holy hell out of me. My initial thought was "I will never be able to raise that much money". I will never be able to walk 60 miles. But one baby step at a time I am traveling that road. Sometimes faltering, and even falling. But at each stumble and step I know my sister is right there beside me, doing what a big sister does best. She has given me courage, determination, and most of all hope. It is no surprise to me that her middle name is Hope. I have raised above and beyond the minimum, and though a few months ago walking 3 miles seemed impossible, I am not walking 7 miles back to back two days a week.
I met an amazing team captain, which could very well be my long lost twin. She graciously changed our team name to Walking for Hope. That small simple gesture was one I cannot thank her enough for, or every show her just how much it meant to me. Where my sister has given me silent support, Michele has held my hand, and kept me motivated, when I was ready to quit. She has praised me, and encouraged me. In only a few weeks she became the best friend I have ever had. I could never repay her for all the light she has brought into the darkness that my life became when I lost my sister. She has taken up some of that empty space left in my heart when my sister left. Of course there will always be a hole where she was, but Michele has filled some of that gap quite nicely. There are others too that have taken up residence in that pit in my heart. Kate, who also inspires me to keep walking, and warms my soul like no one else. And of course Liz, who was able to be there for my sister when distance kept me from her. She held Angie's hand, and did all of the things I would have done had I been able to. I may have lost my sister, but I seem to have gained 3 more in the end.
I walk because it eases my pain. I walk because it brings me closer to what I have left of my sister. I walk because I hate cancer. I walk, because standing there in limbo for the rest of my life is not an option. We must all move forward at some point in our lives, and if we really listen, and look closely we will discover what it is that is nudging us every so gently forward.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Thursday, April 30, 2009
So this is where I went.....
And this is why I went.....
I bought this, and then got a ticket and stood in line for 2 hours.....
To meet her!!!!! (yea that is my large backside I am so generously sharing with you)
This was my reward!!!!! Now how cool is that!!!!! I think Kate and her family are awesome. Yes, sometimes Kate can be a bit anal and bossy, but it is truly out of love. Her book is fantastic, and it shows a side of her that we don't see as much of on TV. Also TLC was recording and I may just end up being on the show!!!!! How cool is that!!!!!!!! I hope hope hope they use some footae with me in it!!!
Posted by Anna Lea at 10:51 PM