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April 22, 2012

Feels Like Flying and…Oh…

Feels Like Flying and…Oh…

Since I took up running in June of 2011, I have been fascinated with the experience of “runner’s high.” When I was first looking at making a commitment to running, the question I posed to many runners was “how long did you have to run before you experienced this magical thing?” – I never once got an answer of less than a year. Most in fact, seemed to agree that you would have to run for a while and you would have to run often. As I have run longer and more often, I think I have had glimpses of this self-induced state-experience. But I am not sure. My real runner friends assure me that I won’t mistake it when it happens. Ok. So I asked a few of them if they would be willing to describe their experience of runner’s high such that a novice like me might be able to better be able to identify the feeling when it strikes. My friend Ted volunteered. Before he sent me this post, he said “I hope you won’t be offended by my analogy…” All I can say is that if it’s really that good it explains why I have heard people say they would give up sex before running. May I also add that this surely motivates me to keep going – how about you?

“If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes” – Andrew Carnegie

Last week Jacqueline and I were running at a very reasonable pace along the beach, and on the return portion of our run, I suddenly turned to her and said, “Sorry, but I have to fly.” And with that, I took off with longer strides that somehow felt lighter, a fast pace, and a huge smile on my face. The world had seemingly become more beautiful, and I was feeling wonderful!  After a short while I turned around and ran back to Jacqueline, who was also smiling. Although she encouraged me to keep going, I was still experiencing that “runners’ high,” and wanted to continue our run together.  I tried to explain what I was experiencing, and promised I would blog about it….about this so-called “runners’ high” that so many of us who run just love to experience.

(Really, he did try to explain it, but he was doing better at smiling than talking….) Continue reading…

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April 15, 2012

Sore Feet in Sydney

Sore Feet in Sydney

Day two in Sydney.

No run, but took a trip to Bondi Beach in the morning – we walked the beachside train from Bondi to Bronte and back. Then the boys took a dip in the amazing ocean pool.

In the afternoon, climbed the Sydney Harbor Bridge. I definitely recommend doing this – we saw the sunset over Sydney as we were descending and it was spectacular.

It’s Monday in Australia. I have completely lost track of what day and time it is in California. Just in time for my vacation to be over.

Happy Sunday or Monday or whatever day you may be enjoying.

We are off to the Blue Mountains.




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March 7, 2012

Oh, My Aching Calves!

Oh, My Aching Calves!

For those of you who have been following along, I live at the beach in Southern California, and since I run these days, I often run near the sand. Did you catch the word “near” in that sentence? I discovered through early attempts that running on sand (even the hard packed stuff down by the edge of the water) is nothing at all like running on a hard/solid surface. Since I have great access to paved paths and trails near my house that parallel the river and the beach, I had just sort of decided that sand was not for me.

But at heart, I am a beach girl. More and more often lately I was putting on my running shoes and thinking “maybe if I just do a little run on the sand….” And then I found myself doing, say, a half mile on the sand and the rest of my run on pavement…and then I was wanting more. We are approaching daylight savings time and the days are getting longer, so when I run in the evening there is the call of sunsets and ocean breezes.

I tried running barefoot on the sand. Isn’t that what we all did as kids? Isn’t that all the rage right now? Not for me. But it did put the idea in my head that my current shoes were pretty heavy with a thick tread that felt like it sort of stuck in the sand.  Maybe new shoes would make the difference.

Besides, who doesn’t want new shoes? Continue reading…

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March 1, 2012

Give Up To Grace

Give Up To Grace

Give up to grace. The ocean takes care of each wave ’til it gets to shore. You need more help than you know.
~ Rumi


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February 22, 2012

Where I Run (8)

Where I Run (8)

Sometimes I just have to believe that there is someone up there with a giant paintbrush, painting the sky just for me.

These are from my run last night.  Enjoy.





















Next post from Salt Lake City, Utah.


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February 17, 2012

Listening to Solitude

Listening to Solitude

Solitude stands by the window
She turns her head as I walk in the room
I can see by her eyes she’s been waiting
Standing in the slant of the late afternoon
– Suzanne Vega

Do you every have a day – or maybe even a week in your life where the universe keeps trying to tell you something over and over and over again? I have been very busy lately, and very stressed, and struggling with my asthma – so maybe by today the universe just needed to shout at me a little…

It started early this morning. Thanks to the hefty dose of drugs I am taking for my lungs I was wide awake at some hour of the morning that barely qualifies as morning. I read this great blog post titled What Happened to Downtime? The Extinction of Deep Thinking & Sacred Space by Scott Belsky. It’s a short piece, I hope you read it. In it he talks about the increasing pressure to be be constantly plugged in and with this the loss of disconnected down time. He reflects on this loss of time alone and relates it to the loss of the “creative pause”- the moments, where the mind, no longer listening to the outside world, can turn in and listen to itself. He writes:

In these moments, you are completely isolated, and your mind is able to wander and churn big questions without interruption.

I saved the article. Tried to quiet my mind. Tried to sleep. No such luck. Continue reading…

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January 29, 2012

Where Are You Going?

Where Are You Going?

Where are you going?
Where do you go?
Are you looking for answers
To questions under the stars?
~ Dave Matthews Band

Transitions are always interesting.

One of the things I love about living at the ocean is that it is the transition from land to sea – even though I see it nearly every day, I still get that feeling of awe like I am standing not just at the edge of the beach, but like I am standing at the edge of the world.

The coast is an obvious transition – waves crashing on sand, liquid against solid – it all clearly says “this is where things change.”

Transitions in our lives are not always so obvious. Sure, there are the big moments – a birth, a death, a move, a new job, a new relationship – but sometimes the most subtle changes are the most meaningful and we may only sense them as they pass by or in hindsight days, months or years later.

It is late January and I have been running for 7 months now. I have been trying to be acutely aware of if or how this experience is altering me – physically, mentally, emotionally. This new movement is not just about moving my body, it’s about moving things in my life, but in the beginning, that was not easy to see.

One thing I have not really known since I started to run is if I would simply wake up one day and not do it again – maybe it would hurt too much or just feel too hard. Maybe I would really hate it or just be bored. But that has not happened. In fact, I have run more than I ever thought I would.

The transition is subtle, but it has gone like this: I intend to run -> I am starting to run ->I am running.

I thought about this today (as I was running) and and asked what would be next?

Continue reading…

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January 27, 2012

Of Picture-Perfect Sunsets

Of Picture-Perfect Sunsets

Sometimes it is simply important to stop and reflect and think about what you are grateful for.

Yesterday I left my office at 4:30 after a long day of meetings and headed for home to run. I was tired and I was going to squeeze the run in before my 6pm conference call – so I didn’t have a whole lot of time.

I walk in my door, rush up the stairs and quickly change and tie back my hair. Maybe I’ll just run on the treadmill I think – but then I glance outside.

It’s the kind of winter day that people in the rest of the world don’t think of as winter – the kind we can only have in Southern California (don’t hate us). It is cooling from being in the high 70s and there is a breeze picking up on the ocean and the sun is moving on down towards the horizon.

I head straight out the front door.

In less than two minutes I am running along the Pacific Coast Highway. And 10 minutes later, I cross the road and am running right along the edge of the sand. I look out at the water which is very still and the sun as it approaches sunset and I realize that even though I live here and I see this all the time it never ceases to take my breath away.

I live in what other people only think of as postcards. Continue reading…

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January 25, 2012

Where I Run (5)







The redness had seeped from the day and night was arranging herself around us. Cooling things down, staining and dyeing the evening purple and blue black
~ Sue Monk Kidd, The Secret Life of Bees

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