Thoughts On: When the Dream Doesn’t Feel Like the Dream

August 2015, I tore a half marathon training plan from the monthly issue of Runner’s World and stuck it on my bulletin board—just in case. I didn’t see the training plan every single day, but on the ones I noticed it pinned there, another mental note would be scrawled and added to the pile with the others.

At some point, those ‘notes to self’ became IOU’s—which I’m now cashing in. I started training for that half marathon goal last week, using that very same plan. This is the embodiment of my 2017 resolution to take my dreams seriously, and an ambition I’ve held for a few years… But at the moment, I don’t feel energized or excited to be on this road.

Blame it on the hot, humid weather, or food, or sleep, but after some reflection this week, I broke it down to a simple truth: making your dreams come true doesn’t always feel like the dream. When picturing the race in October, I think about finally crossing that finish line—not the hours of running that will come before it, or the weeks of training I’m about to put into finally getting there.

And while many of us embrace that the journey is just as important (if not more so) than the destination, because it’s where the bulk of the transformation and learning happens, there’s an idea that every step towards our lofty ambitions will be made with skipping feet and a singing heart. Maybe there’s even a fear that waning enthusiasm means we aren’t on the right road, or chasing the right dream. This probably (definitely) isn’t true. Working towards your dreams is still work—even if it’s doing something you love. There are going to be days when your feet drag, and your song is silence. That’s okay. There’s nothing wrong with not being 100% enthused 100% of the time.

The trick is to recognize that you owe it to yourself to push through to the joy of it all again. You need to understand that this flattened feeling is only a temporary state, and to not take your attention and your intention off of the end goal—the dream. It’s that, or getting ready to write yourself a lot more IOUs…

Thoughts on how to reinvent the road:
• Connect with other people who have the same ambitions
• Give yourself rest days (dreaming downtime)
• Explore detours—find different routes, or other options to the destination (the goal)! There’s more than one way to make it happen.

71 Days

A wee note prior to beginning today’s post: I was walking home from work this week and I saw the first other fat runner I have ever seen in Montreal—ever. She had a water belt, and her athletic clothes showed off all of her lumps and bumps, just like me. She was red in the face, but she was TROOPING, just like me.  I was excited, and inspired. And lady, if you ever for some reason end up reading this, I salute you. Thank you for inspiring me with your own journey, whether it was your 50th run or your first. Keep going. 

Fuck yeah. 

So it’s 71 days, or 10 weeks and 1 day, or 2 months and 12 days—I hate to be that guy, but people, Christmas is most definitely coming. Fresh off of a weekend absolutely stuffed with stuffing (both the noun and the verb), now is the time to up my game for the holiday season. That wonderful time when the air constantly smells like cinnamon, ugly sweaters are in fashion, and ohhhhyes, my binge eating likes to try and go for a record before the new year. Somehow, I’m gonna beat it—my latest is by setting goals. (What a concept, I know!)

Is it taboo to talk about Christmastime before Halloween? Doesn’t matter. I’m doing it anyway, I’m a total Christmas junkie.

It all started this past weekend. Something about being in the town where I grew up set a fire under my ass. It left me with big time aspirations. I left home for Montreal with a mental list of goals in my head, one of them being to lose 10lbs before December 24th, 2016. It’s a little ambitious, given my current track record—but realistically achievable, and it’s a small baby step towards my overall goals. Basically it’s all the things I need.

I keep trying to formulate some kind of work out plan but currently it’s looking like walking to work and home 4-5 days a week, and maybe some strength training or yoga, but who knows. I’m trying to claim that my only plan is “consistency” but we’ll see how well that gets me if it starts getting very cold early this year. Last year I don’t think it snowed until January, and I layered up so much I looked like Randy in his snowsuit in A Christmas Story.

In any case, my gift to myself for Christmas this year is going to be the fact that I am putting in the effort. Realizing that I’m not exempt from healthy choices just because I try to get my 10,000 steps every day. I want to give myself an effort to be proud of. Maybe, I’ll manage to give myself a progress picture as a stocking stuffer. Who knows?