Sunday, June 26, 2011

A Different Lens

I was talking with a friend of mine last week regarding her new adventures in cycling. She was telling me about how the views of her city are so different by bicycle and her familiarity with neighborhoods has developed since she began riding. About three months ago an gentleman at weight watchers told me that you never really see a city until you run the city.

On my own, I have discovered that the lens through which we explore life changes based on our experiences, our attitude or our ability to be empathetic. I am often found telling a story during training sessions that we all have a choice when we wake up in the morning whether we are going to roll out of the right or the wrong side of bed. We can choose, when standing in the long line at the grocery store, whether we are going to have line rage or simply read the magazine or chat up another person in line.

Yesterday morning I woke up on the right side of the bed, however life had different plans for me. I woke up late, rushed around to try and make it to the MIT Saturday run, fell down the stairs, only ran 6 miles (I was supposed to run 8), my dog got sick, spent a ton of money at the doggy ER and was later meeting up with my out of town guests than I would have liked.

Since I have been on the path toward becoming an athlete I view life from a very different perspective, through a very different lens. It is a lens that makes me consider how my choices today might impact me tomorrow. Don't get me wrong, I am constantly living in the moment with the understanding that I have future goals. The following are some examples of how my choices have changed over time:

Before I decide to have a drink, I evaluate my training schedule for the next day.
When I am ordering dinner (which is rare) I am thinking about how it will fuel my body.
If I'm scared of something, I face it head on (with the exception of heights, I don't want to die).
If I am going to have dessert, darn it I am going to have a GOOD dessert.

So yesterday I had a choice to make once all of the fiascoes were out of the way. I could let all of the mishaps turn my day upside down, or I could move on and enjoy my company and the cool city in which I live. I chose the latter. We romped around town to look at campus, check out comfest and see the sights of the short north. What was my favorite part? Being with good friends and walking up and down High Street.  Again, it is all about the lens through which we view life. Next time I find myself having a bad moment I am going to remember all of the extraordinary things I get to experience because I chose to pick up the lifestyle of an athlete. I am going to remember how the bad run yesterday built my character to get through what will be a better run tomorrow.

So what am I trying to say in all of this? If you don't like what is in your view right now, change your lenses. It is never too late!

Oh and lastly, I know not everyone has the desire to run or ride but I do have to agree with my friend... The best way to see a city is by foot or bicycle. The following pictures were taken of me, or by me while experiencing life on foot.
Columbus River Front, Cap City Half Marathon 2010

Down Town Chicago, 5k 2010

Bike the Drive 2009, Chicago Illinois

Downtown Columbus, Half Marathon 2011. 

Colorado 2010, Me and Bob!
The feet that allow me all these adventures :)

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