Free

Are you free?…what is free?

Free (n,adj): not under the control or in the power of another; able to act or be done as one wishes.

Yes, there’s this type of free. It’s a healthy kind of free when you’re not attached to someone’s will 100% of the time. We all have free will. We’re given the options to live however we wish and to bear the consequences of our actions. Free will is probably the greatest and worst gifts in life. Let me explain. On one hand you’re given the chance to do whatever you dream and there’s no boundaries to how wild your dreams can be too. The world is your painting before you waiting to take on all shades of color. Now the downside…isn’t too much of a downside because you can try to cheat the system. Being realistic! You may not become president one day, however you can make waves of inspiration in other forms – perhaps not the form you expected.

Free (v): release from captivity, confinement, or slavery.

I think both definitions of free are important. But aren’t verbs more fun? Of course.

Now if you’ve ever worked a retail job – you know of how 99.9% the shifts pan out. Often times it’s a wrestling match with your inner self to force yourself out the door and to the punch in clock. It takes lots of mind trickery to convince yourself it’s worth it and that it matters in the end. Hey it pays the bills, doesn’t it? Lots of days I come home feeling brain fried, but not from “working” – from the mental strain of being present. How do you escape those tireless negative thoughts? I run. It’s so simple to the point where just the idea of it boils my blood like a chicken noodle.

To escape the complexities and demands of the world is something we must all put time aside to do. It creates breathing room between what you love and what is necessary. That buffer is SO healthy. It allows you can keep your sanity in check when you think you’re losing all your marbles. Running to me is a relationship with mind, body, and soul. It sounds ridiculously cornish but bear with me. You must balance the three equally. Don’t pay into treating your body like king because your mind will take a toll and you honestly might be running for the wrong reasons. Running to keep physically fit, yes that’s fine. Running for fun and the love of movement, that’s my line of thinking. When you lose sight of the reasons you set out to do something you love –  it becomes a chore. It’s a sad happening. It makes me unhappy just thinking about it. There have been times when I get out the door and the entire run from start to finish is a unfortunate grind. Thankfully there are little things called rest days to revamp your attitude and body.

Inspiration from Anna Frost:

A little update here. After my CT scan, the doctor’s first found my ankles to be asymmetrical. I thought my Aryan heritage meant I was scot free from imperfections?! Actually, it was a doctor’s miscalculation because there was more radiation circulating in my left leg. After all this I saw another podiatrist yet again. In true 30 second commercial fashion, he said I have plantar fasciitis. THAT’S IT?! GOOD OL’ PF! Man, had someone only told me earlier there would be no reason to dance through the medical field’s flaming hoops. I’ve been doing more stretches, foot massages, icing than normal to nurse this poor puppy back to full strength. For those who don’t know what plantar fasciitis is – it’s a tearing ligament that runs from your heel to the ball of the foot. I have tearing in the heel area.

The good news is it’s getting better. Funny story I want to share. The other night I was icing normally with a cold pack underneath my heel. I got wrapped up in whatever I was watching on my computer, and got some freeze burn from prolonged icing. Bad I know, but it’s a distracting pain from the real problem. Sham wow!

In running news, yesterday I ran on the gym’s dreadmill and got such a high…higher than a kite! It face lifted my mood more than spinning on the stationary bike ever could.

More to come peeps. I’m not prepped enough to run the Boston’s Prep race on sunday, but there’s no stopping a train.

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Doors Opening

This is an update on what’s going on over the past week. No, it won’t be a sally sob story about not being able to run. It’s true. I can’t run, not even the treadmill. Currently it’s a waiting game for me to receive a 3d scan on my foot to REALLY see what the problem is. Doctors were on vacation last week sipping egg nog, so I’ll be opening a box of surprise news very soon.

You may ask…Alec, aren’t you going insane not running? And I would answer, I was. I’ve gotten over the fact that running isn’t possible for me with an injury, and that’s ok. It’s taken a lot of guts, complaining, and letting go to admit it. This is what’s best for my body. I don’t want to risk anymore chances of my heel getting worse too. I think it’s the best decision, even though, I’m still cringing!

Now with the positives! So when one door closes, you open another. In the mean time I’ve picked up the guitar again and learned some new songs via youtube. Yes, it doesn’t “replace” running, but it helps the free time pass productively. I’m enjoying it more than I anticipated too. It gives me a chance to be creative and patient with learning something new. Now here’s the big one. I’ve been hatching ideas in my head lately. I’ve come to the conclusion that a running injury could potentially happen again in the future. The question is, how to avoid it? Yes, taking care of yourself works, but what about an alternative when running isn’t working? Brace yourself. Cycling. There. It’s been said.

Cycling is the alternative because it’s still in the endurance sport realm. If a bad day happens and running doesn’t happen, jump on a bike! It’s a good distraction. The great thing is cycling is something fresh and exciting I know absolutely nothing about. It will give me a chance to learn the ins and outs of the technology, techniques, and nutrition. The bike I have my eye on is the Trek Madone 2.1, feast your eyes:

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Beautiful isn’t it? Now, I haven’t had the opportunity to try it because of the weather, but I have a really good feeling about it. It has an aluminum frame and carbon fiber forks for a smoother ride. Only 20 lbs. So light it might float away.

Have you gone outside? It’s cold! In the negatives here in New England. For training as of the moment, I’ve joined a gym to let off some steam. The stationary bike has been my training partner for the past week. He’s ok…a little quiet. In addition, I’ve been doing regular core work. The good news is it’s getting the job done giving me my daily fill. Thank God for the indoors.

I’m excited I’ll have another option to train come springtime. Something to go fast on and explore. What scares me the most is that I’ll enjoy cycling more than running, but I’ve quickly dismissed that thought. Running is a something I’ve put lot of time and effort into. It won’t be leaving me anytime soon.