not a small man

Last week, I ran only once…

It was a good indoor run on Friday evening,  45 minutes straight on the little jogging track which is actually 1/14 of a mile at the city gym in Flushing.  I think I did at least 3.5 run/walking it.  I was stopped by the security guard who informed me it was teen night and I had to go. So I did another 20 minutes on an elliptical, but only 1 mile because the incline was steep, I guess, or perhaps the movement just slowed me down.  I know I had better mileage on other ellipticals…
I was looking forward to a good Sunday run, outdoors as the gym is closed on Sunday .  I woke up in the middle of the night on Saturday in a sweat. (Menopause, right?)  I was fine about it, took a bath and read Runner’s World for hours.  This is a magazine that I must say has made a huge difference in my life.  I was running sporadically, got a magazine offer,  and chose Runner’s World, because I thought it might be inspiring.  It was truly a case of imagining before embodying.  I saw an article about finishing the new year right, not waiting for New Year’s Resolutions, and a blurb on the Saratoga 5K race.  Suddenly, I was in TRAINING, not just running. I find that I approach my magazines with new eyes as my weeks of running consistently are turning into months.  I read the articles with new understanding as I move to into more mileage and higher goals.

Then I woke up early, and realized I am still in PERI-menopause because I had another episode of a debilitating onset of menstruation.  This seems to happen to me once every decade, I would say. Unbelievable pain, both in the lower back and lower belly.  Add to this chills and hot flashes (new to the scene, didn’t happen in the last 2 decades) seemingly at once and I passed out on the bathroom for a moment.  Add to this I just had had lunch the day before with my pal who informed me that the symptoms of heart attack for women are dizziness and lower back pain.  So I lay on the bathroom floor and tried to think of God, because I thought I was going to die.  It lasted for ten minutes in that accute distress, while Ian and I debated about calling an ambulance (because if you are a woman, they definitely won’t think you are having a heart attack –my friend at dinner at a whole bunch of anecdotes, courtesy of the book WOMEN ARE NOT SMALL MEN:  Life-Saving Strategies for Preventing and Healing Heart Disease in Women by Nieca Goldberg M.D.).  But my meditation on God began to calm me, Ian was praying in the other room, because there is no room in the bathroom for more than one person on the floor and my cat Naomi decided to sit next to me and send me healing vibrations, and death seemed further away.  The Alleve I had taken kicked in at around 15 minutes, and soon I was resting comfortably.  But I was definitely not running on Sunday.

How quickly it can all break down.  Since I had been reading Runner’s World the night before, during the ordeal I was even thinking about the WALL, which I was experiencing in a sense without running a step, and how breathing and meditation did play into the experience positively, even when pain was still present. Even how the power of suggestion plays in, as my lunch time conversation really made me view the incident in a light I would not have thought of if I hadn’t had the discussion.   I had been on such a roll, and now I feel I am a few weeks behind.  I am leaving for San Francisco tomorrow, we hoped to run a 10K in Los Angeles on February 6, but I haven’t run 7 miles yet, something that is advised by some before one attempts this race.  Thanks to Jeff Galloway, I am feeling that I can do it with the run/walk method.  I look forward to running tonight.


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