Today’s selfie infused run (that started out as six miles for me and ended in eleven miles) was joined by my superstar colleague at CLIF, Serena and her husband Sean. We looped the Thames River and reveled in the opportunity to be here, running together before we Ride London in a few days. Last winter Serena and I also worked hard promoting CLIF and nutrition at another amazing opportunity space – The World Ski and Snow Board Festival.
Reflecting on opportunity, my mind has been turned inside out. It isn’t our jobs that afford us opportunities. Our jobs are simply a means of expressing the opportunities we create for ourselves. Thankfully, my company brings people together who seek opportunities and have creative curiosity about what we can accomplish together not because of our jobs but, rather through our jobs.
It will be important for the next generation not to measure their worth and value on the job, position, or title they hold. These things are not only fleeting but, also less important in a digital world where opportunity is increasingly accessible. In this world our true value (skill, knowledge, talent, creativity) can shine.
It is my hope that I can teach my boys they each have unique gifts, skills, and talents to contribute so the can be ever more confident and conscious of their value and worth much earlier than I was.
Then they will see, that every conversation, calculated-risk taken, or challenge accepted is what opens us to opportunities like running and biking around London to make observations and connect my company to the culture. Carry on.
Rise and shined from my morning nap to hit the streets to see what I could see. It has been a long time since I explored a new city and, even longer since exploring an international city. I contemplated running my sleepy self around. Then I thought I again. Why hurry through? This is time for meandering.
My Mom has a fascination with the stories of Henry the VIII and his wives.I am embarrassed to say that thanks to the HBO series, The Tudors, so do I. Who needs history class when you have dramatized fiction based on history? So Mom, you will be happy to know The Tower of London was first on my list of attractions this afternoon. I crossed the Millennium Bridge, breezed by the free version of St. Paul’s Cathedral, and footed it over to The Tower. Much to my surprise The Tower is actually a compound of structures and tours with history and exhibits worth multiple visits. I got my money’s worth today though and covered broad ground with a close of the Armory exhibit. I also got a close up of the encryption in the walls of a tower that kept ‘prisoners’ through the centuries.
After my tour I continued my walk across the iconic Tower Bridge and looped back for the comforts of my hotel. Walking back during evening commute I caught many runners with backpacks obviously combining their commute and their run. My novel idea is not so novel here. It makes perfect sense. Urban run-commuting through London is probably the most efficient use of time.
I did find myself lonely and thinking of my family often. Man, I can cover a lot of ground on my own but, it just isn’t as fun as sharing it with my people. They make everything more interesting for sure. They also make everything more challenging. I literally had to pee for like two hours before I found a bathroom and, I was starving! No kid of mine tolerates that for ten seconds. Nor should they. It isn’t good for a person. My boys keep me on track.
When I as trying to figure out how to reach Aaron through hangouts I stumbled on this gem:
First of all my Ridge Run training is in the pooper this month. Second of all, I can’t afford the time or money to run it this year as much as I want to. My Mom says I have to make choices. Admittedly, when I was young choices were not my forte but, I have improved. So the choice was made.
Why can’t I take our family on our annual summer pilgrimage back to my Montana homeland? Well, because I am learning what it means to buy a new house, move completely out of our home of the past nine years, fix it up to bay area standards , and list it all while continuing to work and parent my very active and emotionally-in-transition boys all in the span of one month plus an international work trip! My training goal at this point is to just maintain fitness to salvage some of the fall running fun. And if that wasn’t enough, I am traveling to London for work.
What could a dietitian working for CLIF, steepeded in parenting, adventure, and running nutrition possibly be needed for in London?
Good question! I will be providing nutrition news and education to some of London’s food, health, nutrition journalists, mingling with British nutrition experts and get this….riding a bike for forty six miles representing CLIF and bikes at Ride London.
Now, let’s be clear, I own bikes for commuting and jigging around mountain trails but, a road bike? This should be interesting given running forty six miles sounds more comfortable. Show me what you got London.
Anyone can be an athlete. It is true. Not having enough time, only have one leg, or fear of swimming can all be overcome. I have met climbers missing fingers, mountain runners with one leg, Olympic marathoners who previously lost their ability to walk and they are doing it. It is in us if we want it.
Then there are the busy people – really busy – like full-time jobs and five kids busy – who make it happen because they want it that bad.
When someone says to me “Oh, I could never do that” – ‘that’ being something seemingly out of their reach like running a five kilometer race, climbing a mountain, getting up every morning and running ten miles on a tread mill – I don’t believe it.
I have had the privilege of getting to some of the world’s best athletes. What they all have in common is something we all have within us. That is the gift of perspective on limitations. Limitations don’t become boundaries. Instead, they become challenges to what is possible. See here for one of my favorite inspirations. No, I don’t climb but am none-the-less inspired.
The professional athletes I have met are dedicated to their sports. They prioritize it. They may seem special and different but, like a movie star they choose to focus on this, and that what makes the so good at what they do. Genetically, they may have some advantages that push them to the top. We can all however, learn to change our perspective , being the best we can be in context of our own genetics and goals. There is an athlete in all of us, it is a matter of prioritizing fitness, food, and self-care within our own circumstances to find the athlete within every body.
The “organized circus” is a phrase I recently used with a friend inquiring about how things were going. This means that there are many moving parts of the collective adventures in being a mother, writer, runner, wife, and employee right now that are loosely planned. Last Thursday night, in a very late night and organized fashion, I packed up the car t for a weekend in Tahoe with my kids while my husband was out of town. This was an ambitious adventure in its own right but, the plan also included spending Friday at my office with kids and puppy in tow on our way to the mountains.
There is no denying this was highly ambitious but, it seemed worth a try. We had also just spent the week packing up of our entire house so it could be painted. It was probably the lack of sleep that lead to my inevitable tears of defeat a few short hours after attempting to manage at an office that is also an organized circus of dogs and business.
Once I had recovered from my sob fest and the realization that the only thing my kids had to eat this morning were day-old donuts and a CLIF BAR, I accepted defeat and hightailed it to our happy place.
As my organized circus pulled out of town my thought was it is all a part of the family adventure and, it is all training for something.