Tuesday, March 31, 2015

What I Learned in March

Is March really over? I feel like I blinked, and the calendar is turning to April!
  After February being the longest month ever, somehow March flew by!
For me, March was full of fun events-  Dad's 70th birthday party, my family all together, working outside of the office off and on, travel, and races.
 But as I have come to do at the end of each month this year, I am pausing to reflect on what I have learned this month, be it silly or serious, and there's always a little of both.

1. It turns out I don't have to have sweets to live. 
 For Lent, I gave up sweets. I have never participated in Lent before, but when my friend asked what I was giving up for Lent, and I learned what they were giving up, I felt challenged, and wanted to participate as well. So, I gave up sweets. At first, doing so was extremely hard. I craved chocolate and sugar pretty badly. But now, after many days, while every now and then I still want something sweet, I have grown accustomed to this and am half considering not really going back to sweets. I have read the more sugar you have, the more your body craves it. Well, then, perhaps giving it up is a good thing all around.

2. Hilly/Shmilly.....
 I ran the hills and conquered them. Now, doing hill training feels way less intimidating. In fact, while it hurt a bit, the race was a really wonderful experience, and so I almost feel excited to do more hill running. I said almost. I don't really know anyone who enjoys hill training. That being said, I don't fear the beastly term of "hills" anymore. Nor will they stand as an excuse in my path.

3. Selfies are a strange phenomenon.
 Selfies are funny, aren't they? I evaluated this and I am confident I take far too many selfies. But, either no one is around to capture a memorable moment for me, so I do it myself, or my desire to take countless snapshots in a moment keep others from really wanting to shoot pics with me, soooo, I resort to selfies. I said I take too many and I said I probably should take less, but, alas, I take them anyway. I tell myself one day my kids will be glad I've taken so many. Here is my latest race selfie. And to be quite honest, selfies really aren't all that flattering. But they are real, aren't they? So, here is my not so flattering post race selfie.
4. The Body and Running
 I guess this was a month for me to acquire new knowledge of running related facts. Being part of Dr. Mark Cucuzzella's training clinics this month, I learned many new facts about the body and running. Like your body stores energy, and if treated properly, and used appropriately, your body can run a long while without refueling. Or how the body's motion works when running and what posture does to affect that- even our posture at our desks all day. (He really verses this much better than I do. Check out his videos on www.usafmarathon.com under the training tab) The point is, I learned new techniques that I believe may very well carry me much further than I was a month ago, if I apply them. Thank you, Dr. Cucuzzella. 

5. Prayer is the greatest gift you can give someone.
  Often times , the power of prayer is underestimated. And often times, I find myself saying "I can't really do much for you except  pray for you."  Except??  Prayer is the greatest gift. Some of the most meaningful people in my life have been not ones who try to fix it all or have all the answers, but the ones who give me a hug and simply say "I'm praying for you" . Those prayer warriors make an eternal difference that no one sees. I often underestimate the power of prayer. But when I stop and think about it, and really consider the depth of what prayer can and does do, I realize how valuable the pray- ers are. And sometimes, God gently reminds me that prayer is a phenomenal ministry. One that can be done every day, all day. 

 This month was so busy, I had to really pause and realize what I learned. March was a good month. I am excited to see what April brings. While life continues to be full of change, change is what forces us to grow. And to learn. One day at a time. 

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