Monday, January 11, 2010

Contagious! defines contagious as:

1) Capable of being transmitted by bodily contact with an infected person or object;
2) Tending to spread from person to person.

Typically when we hear the word contagious we think of our colleagues who come to work sick and are spreading the germs to everyone. Or we think of those nasty germs at the gym that could cause you to get some infection on your leg that needs to be cleared up with antibiotics. Or even LICE, Yuck!!! To sum it up, we typically think contagious = BAD!

A new trend in the news is good news though and I didn't realize how true it was until recently. I did my first triathlon in 2003 because my sister talked me and my other sister to participate. I probably would have quit doing triathlons but my sister was insistent that I sign up the next year, and I did. My sister has a knack for "recruiting" people to participate in races with her. Does that make my sister contagious?

Well here is something to consider. I started enjoying these races that my sisters talked me into and I started doing more (2009 being the busiest for me so far). Through the years I have begun recruiting people to join me as well. My friend from HS and her husband have joined me for triathlons, a 10k, and soon to be a half marathon. My friend from Colorado is running now. A friend in Columbus did her first triathlon with me in September. Another friend and I are going to run together for the first time tomorrow. My mom is more committed to sticking with WW. My cousin has asked me about WW and is considering joining.

Do I credit myself for getting people to join the "healthier lifestyle"? Not really but do I credit my sisters for continuing to push me to adopt a healthier lifestyle? Sure.

So here is the big question does contagious always have to = BAD???

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

On the Other Side of 2009!

Hello 2010!!! I promised myself no New Year's Resolutions for 2010. What I decided to do instead was write a list of 100 things I would like to accomplish in 2010, and I discovered something very interesting.

About 6 years ago I was an AmeriCorps VISTA member in Maine and I had the good fortune of participating in training sessions with the most amazing facilitator. Not only did I get to participate in her sessions but on one of her visits to Maine I had the great pleasure of picking her up from the airport and spending a lot of time with her preparing for our training. We did an activity during the training that included writing down various goals (large or small, service related or personal) and identify which overall category they fit in when we look at our life as a whole. Some examples could be the following:

Goal: pay bills on time

Category: Finance

Goal: Exercise more

Category: Health

I don't really remember all of the instructions from this exercise but what I do remember is that you would find common themes.

In December 2009 I had the pleasure of seeing this same facilitator in Ohio, and strange enough, a couple of weeks prior to her coming to Ohio I found the list of goals I wrote way back when I lived in Maine, many of which were accomplished.

As I wrote my goals for 2010 I reflected on that exercise and discovered my overall life categories haven't change. The same things are important to me including family, health, and finances.

One thing I didn't mention is that when I first met this facilitator I was heading to Portland from Augusta, and I was to participate in a 5k race, and decided not to do it because I had never gone to a race alone and I was scared. It has taken me 5-6 years, but that fear is gone. I now embrace going to races and participating regardless of who is going to be at the finish line to cheer me on. Don't get me wrong, I much prefer having a support system, but to be able to go out and do it alone is a HUGE accomplishment.

So you may ask, what does this all have to do with my Couch to Athlete plan and I am going to highlight a couple of things that showed up on my list. Maybe I am crazy??? Or maybe I am living my dream:

1) Run a half marathon (May 1, 2010 and I have friends who will probably do it with me)

2) Participate in an Aqua bike (July with my sister)

3) Do an Olympic Distance Triathlon (August, maybe Chicago)

4) Go to the Gym at least 4 days a week (may not seem to be enough but I run primarily outside these days)

5) Ride my bike to work through the summer

6) Watch less TV

All of these goals lead to my dream of becoming an athlete.

I know much of this may seem redundant to my faithful readers, however I've learned that this blog is as much for me as it is for you. The more I write it, the more I believe it, the more I live it...