Monday, June 24, 2019

When It All Comes Together!

One week from Wednesday Tom and I will be running with heart at the 10th Annual Finish at the 50 5 and 10K race.

I easily have the 5K distance and know there is no time limit but I am going for a PR. No not a PR on the clock but a PR for mind, body and soul: to Perform remarkably well!

On Saturday, Tom and I set out to simulate race day on Heartbreak Hill. What better way to train for the ramps at Gillette than on Heartbreak Hill.

I took several deep breaths and stretched before we began our final training run for race day.

I listened to my body and while I pushed my pace, I knew when I needed to take a break, catch my breath, have a sip of water and continue on.

Heartbreak Hill is a series of hills and after we conquered the first Hill, Tom let me know that I had just run the equivalent of the ramps at Gillette. It was a great confidence booster to both hear him say that and see the pace I ran.

It's always a thrill to reach the summit of a hill and then experience the ease and exhilaration of a downhill. After we reached the crest of the second hill near Boston College, at the 1.56 halfway point, I felt strong and ready to take on my first major race since January of 2018!

I experienced the joy of running, challenging myself yet running from the inside out to see what this body could do.

As Tom called out the paces, I was in awe of how my training peaked; how the months of running on Heartbreak Hill, doing speed work around the Reservoir and on flat surfaces and our twice a week strength training workouts with some pool workouts was paying BIG dividends.

We had a 206' elevation gain with negative splits all the way. Of course negative splits are boosted when you go downhill!

Throughout the training run, I visualized race day. Using visualization has been vital in my journey back to health and wellness after the diagnosis of Post-Polio Syndrome in December of 2006.

Since my 3rd Bermuda Half Marathon in as many years, I was having a very hard time getting back my running mojo. The training took a toll as I continued to heal from the effects of paralytic polio and trauma but so has our daughter's severe psychiatric disability of these past 3 years!

Tom and I have worked very very hard to reclaim OUR lives and get back to all the things that bring us joy in our lives. In 2015 I was coming back from a very serious knee injury that doctors and PT's said would sideline me and that I would need a total knee replacement in a few years. I was blessed to meet a chiropractor who reminded me of what I know to be true about healing and he helped me to build on the foundation I had laid down during the previous 8 years of my healing odyssey. This year's race is my comeback race from the severe stress of our daughter's struggles with depression, eating disorder, addiction and suicidal behaviors.

Scenes from Saturday's run:

A wonderful memory popped up in my Facebook feed this morning:
And with that it is taper time! Race day is 8 days away. Will do strength training and cross train in the pool. PR here we come! Was within 8 seconds of what I need and that's after Saturday's kick butt training on Heartbreak Hill and 2 hours in the pool on Monday! Oh yeah!

It had the map from my last training run from Nike+.

How amazing that I am on the same schedule for this comeback race 4 years after that magical and mystical time at Finish at the 50 2015. You can read my race report by following this link.

I know that I am race ready. I feel it in my soul as I felt a stirring in my soul when I decided to sign up for Finish at the 50.

It's time to maintain what I have been able to achieve with race preparation with cross training, getting into the pool, having rest days and one more chiropractic treatment next Tuesday.

I have an imprint in mind, body and soul of our last training run for Finish at the 50 and how incredible it felt when it all came together!

I am very excited to recreate this scene on the 50 yard line of Gillette Stadium next Wednesday:

Let freedom ring!

From my heart to yours
In Health and Wellness,

Be sure to visit my website at

Hear my interview with Kendra Petrone on Magic 106.7's Exceptional Women Show by following this link

My books are available on Amazon and "Feel the Heal" and "The Adventures of Runnergirl 1953" are available in Natick Center Cultural District at Paula Romero Dunbar's Celebration Boutique Paper Fiesta coincidentally located on Mile 10 of the Boston Marathon Route. Proceeds from the sale of books for June and July are being donated to The Joseph Middlemiss Big Heart Foundation to support Tom's Falmouth Road Race. You can also donate directly by following this link.

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