Monday, February 21, 2011

Against the Wind

Against the wind
I'm still runnin' against the wind
I'm older now but still runnin' against the wind
Well I'm older now and still runnin'
Against the wind

- Bob Seger

Returning to the song-lyric-as-blog-post-framework, we turn this week to Mr. Bob Seger, rasping troubadour of what we'd now call the era of "classic rock".  This past week involved a whole lot of "runnin' against the wind", both literally and otherwise.

The post-ultra training schedule called for a recovery/cutback week 55 miles, on 6 days of running.  However, as is the norm during marathon training, life intervened, and we had to tweak our way to that mileage, which came out like this:
  • Monday - 30 mins recumbent bike, plus very light weights, stretching
  • Tuesday - Unscheduled rest day [back was hurting, hugely stressful day and was pressed for time]
  • Wednesday - 8M easy
  • Thursday - AM: 5M easy; PM: ~7M easy [mild temps]
  • Friday - 10.4M, with 10x1 min at half-marathon pace (calling that 6:45/mi right now); high 50's!
  • Saturday - 8+M easy, partly in driving winds and sudden whiteout snow squall
  • Sunday - 16.8M, involving some good hills and relentless headwinds for maybe 2/3 of the total
The good news, I managed the 55 miles, and ran every step outside, a nice accomplishment in mid-February.  My back feels better.  The less pleasant news is that the family unit (such as it is) is definitely going through a very difficult transitional time.  The separation is taking a significant toll on all of us, especially the older two kids.  Mrs. ESG and I are still figuring out how to relate to one another, especially within the context of co-parenting children who are clearly suffering under the weight of our adult decisions.  Things have - in no particular order - alternated between tense, explosive, cool, bitter, calm, terse, emotional, serious, etc.  "Loving", "forgiving", "compassionate", and similar ideals are not on the list.  And I consider myself as responsible as anyone for the dearth of good will.

By the weekend, though, it did seem like we might have been beginning to scratch out a modicum of equilibrium, starting to find what I've been referring to as our "new normal".  After a brief interaction tonight, though, I'm not so sure once again.  That said, the kids seem a bit better, and - frankly - that's what most matters to me.  My needs, my wants, my feelings, fall far down the hierarchy of concerns, at least right now.  Still, I feel that the space I've sought is starting to serve a purpose, as I have had time to reflect, look hard into the mirror and think about who I am, what I am called to do on this Earth and how I can be better a better father, and - really - a better man.

So, this next week calls for 79 miles, but of course that will have to be at least 80.  Perhaps my coach will scold me.  But, I have to be who I am, right? ;-)  And, I have to suffer the consequences of my decisions. An extra mile in a week shouldn't have resounding repercussions.  But what about some of the other choices - big and small - we make?

Thanks for reading. -ESG


AKA Darkwave, AKA Anarcha, AKA Cris. said...

Y'know, all we can really do is think hard, and take one step at the time with the best of intentions and continued inquiry as to whether the path is correct.

I also happen to think that kids are resilient, and will survive nearly any situation as long as the parent's love of the child underlies the choices made.

Parents who are constantly pondering their children's health and happiness are pretty darn good parents; it's those who assume/presume happiness that risk harm.

DogPound said...

Thinking about you Ron.

L.A. Runner said...

"It is a pathway of sorrow and joy, of suffering and healing, of tears and smiles, of trials and victories, of conflicts and triumphs, of hardships and perils and buffetings, of persecutions and misunderstandings, of troubles and distress; through all of which we are made more than conquerors through Him who loves us." ~E.A. Kilbourne

Hang in there, Ron. Don't be afraid to lean on family and friends. You have lots of people that care about you.

Girl In Motion said...

Hugs, boyee. May peace be on the near horizon for the entire ESG clan.

jaysummer4 said...

No words of wisdom, but hoping for better days ahead for you.