Our first real training day was three miles, and today we are going four times that far. It’s amazing. I still can’t believe this is me doing this. I have a strange stitch in my chest, but I just do some acupressure on it, and by mile two, it’s forgotten. It reappears by evening, though, and lingers through the weekend, changing locations and worrying me. Given the way my mother died – an unanticipated and unexplained heart event – strange chest pains scare me. But I’ve been emotional lately, and there are so many possible causes, so I just watch it.
Monday, I go out for my three-mile morning walk. But first I pull a card. I’ve been working with a deck of flash cards that are designed to help train intuition. So, thinking about how I can best tend to myself today, I pull Get Grounded. It’s about coming into the body, connecting with nature and the earth.
Perfect! I stretch and head out for my walk. My chest is still tweaky, so I start praying and asking for help. Just as I say, “Help me keep my heart and breathing open”…I trip. My foot catches on a lip of sidewalk, and I go face down on the ground. So, I’m lying there, on my stomach, knee skinned, hands skinned, elbow scraped and bleeding, wondering, Was that really necessary??
“Are you okay?” asks a passer-by. “Do you live near here? Can someone help you home?”
“I’m fine,” I announce. “I need to finish my walk.”
With that, I pull out my water bottle, douse my wounds and get back on my way. My elbow hurts, and so does my ego. Nothing like a skinned knee to knock the hubris out of you.
In 2005, I stunned myself by signing up to walk the San Diego Rock ‘n Roll Marathon on behalf of the American Stroke Association. This post is one of a series of reflections and Training Tales from that time. The whole series begins here.