Friday, March 30, 2012

Giving and receiving

Happy Friday!

I started out this morning with an easy seven miles and some strides, and now I am looking forward to a calm and restful Friday. Josh is gone until late tonight at a track meet (along with our two oldest kids), Friday is the one day a week that Noah doesn't have any therapists come to work with him, and we have nothing to do once the rest of the kids get home from school but spend time together, have dinner, and watch a movie. Yay for Friday!

I have been thinking a lot this week about all that running has given me. A lot of people only see all that I give to running - the time, the miles, the effort, the work, the missed sleep. And yes, with running over 300 miles a month lately, I am definitely giving a lot of time, miles, effort, work, and sleep to running.

But what a lot of people don't see is all that I GET from running. The weight loss is easy to see, but running has given me much, much more than a fit and healthy body. 

Running has given me confidence. Running has given me an inner fire. Running has given me strength - physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. Running has given me a chance to play and do something for myself that I love on a daily basis. Running has given me many amazing opportunities. Running has given me new friends. Running has given me a release for my stress, a boost in my patience, and a way to better my body, mind, and soul every day. 

Running helped me find and unlock a part of myself that I did not know existed. Running helped me find the "Erin" that is athletic, strong, tough, fast, brave, driven, determined, confident, and able.

In a life happily dedicated to loving and caring for others, running has given me dreams and goals all for myself. 

So yes, I give a lot to running. But running gives me back so much more. It is much like being a mother and a wife - you do your very best and give all that you have to give, and get back more than you could hope for.

As I have been thinking a lot about Boston coming up and of my long term goal of qualifying for the 2016 Olympic Marathon Trials, I have had a lot of thoughts of all that I will have to give to achieve my dreams and goals. And yet I look forward to the journey, and to all the "giving", because I know that I am going to get back more than I can imagine. I know that no matter what happens, I will never be sorry for chasing a dream, and giving my all to do my best at something I love.

Since I love quotes, here are a few I wanted to share this morning.

"You have to have confidence in your ability, and then be tough enough to follow through." -Rosalynn Carter 

"You have a masterpiece inside you, you know. One unlike any that has ever been created, or ever will be. If you go to your grave without painting your masterpiece, it will not get painted. No one else can paint it. Only you." -Gordon MacKenzie  

"Each of us has a fire in our hearts for something. It's our goal in life to find it and to keep it lit." -Mary Lou Retton  
"Spread joy. Chase your wildest dreams." -Patch Adams

"There is no telling how many miles you will have to run while chasing a dream."  -Author Unknown 


Nikki said...

I love this! Your blog has inspired me so much to start running as well, and I have seen myself getting better and better eahc week (nowhere near as good as you are of course!)

I have a question... how do you see running affecting your passion about adoption, international development, orphans, etc. I initially came to your blog because that is what you wrote a lot about. It seems like as you get more passionate about running, that stuff isn't as important? I would love to hear your thoughts on balancing that (if you do) or if this new passion has changed your priorities and focuses, if that makes sense.


BumbersBumblings said...

Loved this! Perfect post to read before my second half marathon tomorrow!!

Mark Matthews said...

The second and fifth post gave me some shivers. Great ones.

misszippy said...

Rosalyn Carter's quote actually gave me the chills! Love it.

And you are so right. Running is a special gift to some of us that opens up doors we can never imagine. After 15 years at it, this is more true than ever for me, and I think that's saying quite a bit.

Enjoy the peaceful day!

fancy nancy said...

Running is a gift that unlocks our inner strength! You are so right Erin! Love the quotes too!! Goosebumps! Must share them with my high schoolers!

Suz and Allan said...

Those are great quotes! Hope you all enjoy your Friday! It sounds like it's going to be a good one.

L.A. Runner said...

I love this post. People ask me all the time, "Why do you run so much?" and "Dont' you get tired of it?" It's so hard for me to put into words, but I feel the SAME WAY.

Rock on, girl. You are going to KILL IT in Boston! :)

Shannon @ Tales from an Average Runner said...

I loved this post. Sometimes it's hard to put into words all the things that running gives to me. I feel you captured it all pretty nicely. :)

Nicole (@nmh1970) said...

Fridays are like that for us too! My husband makes homemade pizza, and we all watch a movie together. Friday Night FunNight! We've been doing it since the kids were little. (Now they are 11, 9, and 3). Have a great weekend!

bobbi said...

Love this!

(and I just got my new RW - what a great story!)

Jill said...

Amen! As a sidenote, I did a long run in my PureFlows today and I'm so glad I decided to try them out. They feel great!

Jill said...

I have been running pretty much non-stop since I was in high school...I even ran in college and I can honestly say that running STILL gives back to me. I learn more about myself in every race, every run.

I'm going to have to pick up the newest this the one you are featured in? I don't get a subscription so I don't want to miss it! :)

Ann / said...

Just found your blog thanks to RW. What an amazing story, family, goals you have! We love Afton and pass through often on our way to a Dr. in Jackson. So the next time I see you out running and you see plates from Kemmerer and a girl wildly waving out the window, it's me! :) Running also gives me so much as well, but I know it also gives others a better me. My husband gets a better wife and my kids get a better mother because I am taking care of me on so many levels because I run.