Friday, March 16, 2012

Put Me on the Highway

"The world is always changing. Every day it's changing. Everything in life is changing. We have to look inside ourselves to find what stays the same, such as loyalty, our shared history and love for each other. In them, the truth of the past lives on."

“When I knew I couldn't suffer another moment of pain, and tears fell on my bloody bindings, my mother spoke softly into my ear, encouraging me to go one more hour, one more day, one more week, reminding me of the rewards I would have if I carried on a little longer. In this way, she taught me how to endure--not just the physical trials of footbinding and childbearing but the more tortuous pain of the heart, mind, and soul. She was also pointing out my defects and teaching me how to use them to my benefit. In our country, we call this type of mother love teng ai. My son has told me that in men's writing it is composed of two characters. The first means pain; the second means love. That is a mother's love.”

Couple of quotes I lifted from last night's (rare) indulgence in movie-land. Snow Flower and the Secret Fan. Not an epic film (disjointed, frustratingly complex, issues with spatio-temporal-linguistics, pacing), BUT, it had a handful of INCREDIBLY POWERFUL SCENES. The magic movie moments that make the boredom, tedium and the mundane worth enduring. Kinda like training. You, much like the two girls bonded and bound to lifelong devotion, endure the often boring, the sometimes tedious and the mostly mundane to…….

… ready for the lights, camera and action. The incredibly powerful scene in your life, in your day, in your race that fills your soul with validation and your heart with joy. Then (and only then) does all the training, all the suffering, all the pain make sense. Here is another quote from the same movie:

"Only through pain will you find beauty. Only through suffering will you find peace."

Meaning, of course, that the next time (this afternoon?) that we head out the door for our swim, bike or run, if that session, as it should, is going to contain a anaerobic component, we must find a way to encourage ourselves to endure that zone one minute longer, one lap more or one meter faster. Embrace this. Sign a pact with it. Take a vow. Get to know it (the real you) a little better every time you train. The Eagles, or Etta James, might persuade you to 'Take it to the limit one more time'.

Here are a couple of interestingly related links; The first is on a technique called TAP, Taking Away Pain.

Also is a great swim video featuring Scott Neyedli whom I have had the pleasure of interviewing several times.

Here is an animated coaching video of Mr. Smooth in the pool stroking with what appear to be a flawless and powerful groove. If I created a vid of my stroke I am sure it would be called Mr. Barge.

And here is a cool instructional bike fit video from our friends at the Boulder Center for Sports Medicine using the ComuTrainer as fitting tool.

That's about all we have time for today folks. The rains have temporarily blown out to sea leaving beautiful blue skies under which I am heading out and under for a snappy little 10K.

It will be snappy because I will consider the above lifted quotations as I measure and manage each foot strike along the path of my run. Yes, I do find solace in metaphor.

Meaning (from the TAP article) that to be successful, I must:

1) Define the pain.

2) Control or manage it.

3) Determine IF elimination or reduction will help or hinder.

4) Observe related stressors.

Finally on this gorgeous Friday before St. Paddy's, we have a double-dip tonight in the House of Mirth, TWO exciting winners-bracket matches. I am looking foreword to another live demonstration of our understanding of……

…..all of the above. (Put me the highway and show me the sign.)

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