Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Sometimes Hard is Just Hard

I am generally a very motivated person, and I love to write posts about pushing myself and making the most of life even with the challenges the universe throws your way. One of my favorite blogs I've ever written is that the hard is what makes it great. It's true. The hard is what makes it great, but sometimes the hard is just hard. Motivation is hard. Balance is hard. And sometimes great feels unattainable.

The life/work/running/parent balance is brutal. I feel like I'm putting the bulk of my energy into being a good mom (which is of course most important) while focusing just enough energy on everything else to keep it going. Great is not in my vocabulary right now. I feel like I'm just keeping the balls in the air.

I've got a couple of races on the schedule to keep me motivated. Thank goodness that I do, or I wouldn't be running at all. I ran last weekend on a gorgeous sunny morning, and most of it was a struggle. One of my favorite things about running has always been getting in that running groove where I work through everything in life - work, personal life, writing blogs in my head. Right now the running groove alludes me. I realized this weekend that right now the life groove is alluding me a little bit too. I'm still pushing myself at a level that I always have, but it feels like life is pushing back. No matter how efficient I'm being, I feel like there are still 100 things to do. Some days it's just daunting.

This week I'm traveling every day for work: Flint today, Benton Harbor tomorrow, Ann Arbor/Detroit on Wednesday and Ann Arbor both Thursday and Friday. It's a lot. I control my own schedule, so there's really only one person to blame. But I expect a level of professional excellence from myself that means pushing my limits. Starting a new job when my son was two months old was overwhelming, but I feel like I'm starting to settle into a rhythm. That rhythm, however, requires a lot of travel, networking and focus. 

Fitting in running right now is extraordinarily difficult. I travel most days, and when I'm home I want/need to just be home with the baby. He goes to bed at 8 pm, and then it's cleaning, washing bottles, getting ready for bed to do it all over again. And the kicker is that it's amazing. That little guy smiles at me, and that's better for my soul than any run or work project ever will be. The balance continues to be tricky, and I'm sure I'm going to figure it out. I have to.

On Friday I went to a work event in the evening and then hung out with some colleagues afterward. I got home and in bed around 2 am, and Will was up and ready to go at 6:30 am. I was so groggy and exhausted. My feet were killing me from about 17 straight hours in heels. But my exhaustion/discomfort is irrelevant when it comes to spending time with my little man. It does, however, make it extremely difficult to productively log running miles.
The best wake up call ever.

My son is four months old today, and it's gotten easier every day. This week I feel like I'm in a pretty decent work/mom groove. Running is going to be tough with my travel schedule, but I think I can fit in some good cross training workouts to fill the void. The life equilibrium is still a little off, but it's nothing sheer determination and drive can't fix. If the running has to suffer for a bit, I've got to learn to let myself off the hook. The New York Marathon is seven months away. Let's hope my balance returns enough to get through my training program and a huge bucket list race. The hard is what makes it great, and sometimes the hard is just that: hard. I'll be back to inspiring next week.  


  1. Sometimes, you just have to not take yourself so serious. Its ok to not always cross your "T".s and Dot your "I"s.
    Being a mom is always number one. Then I believe God gives us grace and peace in the other areas. Keep on keeping on! You are doing a great job!

    1. Great advice!! And thank you for the encouragement!