Key moments exist in our lives where big experiences become processed and embedded into our memories, heart, and minds. These moments can leave deep wounds and stay stuck with you or springboard you forward into productive growth. Diving into life wholeheartedly, taking risks, and pushing ourselves means that we will fail along the way. How we get up from the fall and keep moving forward serves as a catalyst for growth. We use perspective to write the narrative about the experience, but sometimes we are so stuck in disappointment, that we are unable to find a way to change the story in our minds.
This is the moment I’m most interested in– Just before disappointment digs it’s tentacles too deeply into our psyche, when it’s most impactful to have a superhero narrator sweep in to save the story.
One of these moments is still crystal clear in my mind from my own experience running in High School.
I’m telling this story in hopes that this will remind you of an experience of your own, and you will find a way to help someone change their narrative and stories…
It was the spring of 1987, Oregon State Track Meet, Hayward Field, Eugene, Oregon.
Our team drove down from Beaverton to the famed ‘FIELD OF DREAMS’ in the track world, where Steve Prefontaine ran his famous races for the U of O and qualified for the 1972 Olympic Games. Stepping onto the track we felt goosebumps from the spirit of the hallowed grounds where running icons had changed the sport forever. Prefontaine once said, “To give anything less than your best was to waste the gift.” Everyone knew we all had to run faster and harder if we were going to win this 5A State Track Meet, loaded with talented runners from all over the state.
I had one problem, however. I was really sick- a few days into the flu, I was struggling to find the reserves I knew I needed to fulfill team calculations for winning State.
When they announced 1st call for the MILE run, I remember feeling dizzy and weak and just hoping for a miracle. I was a hot, clammy, wobbly mess when I lined up for the race. When the gun went off and the crowds were screaming from the stands, I tried to hold on. I was hoping for muscle memory or adrenalin or whatever could help through these 4 laps. I went out fast trying to stay with the girls I usually competed with, for as long as I could…
Slowly I begin to drop away and I remember feeling desperate to have the strength to hold on for my team, but I just couldn’t. When the bell lap rang and everyone started their kicks, I had none. I can barely remember the final stretch in front of the stands, I was so dizzy and tired. When I finished at the back, I dropped to my hands and knees in the infield. As I was grasping the magnitude of the whole race, one I’d worked for all winter and spring, I could feel the devastation of failure settling into me. I had let everyone down. Suddenly, my dad was there.
Somehow he had made his way out of the stands and onto the track and was on his knees in front of me. He grabbed my shoulders and made me look him in the eyes (similar to the picture above with his grandson after a ski race). He had that same light in his eyes you see in this picture of him. He said this: “I have never, ever been more proud of you than I am right now. I have never seen you run a greater race than that one. You gave it everything you had and it’s all we can ask for in life- is to just give it the best we’ve got. You could not have done more.” I felt the devastation lift out of my mind and body. Instead, just like that, he rewrote my narrative into something I’m proud of instead of crushed by even to this day.
He wrote the story for me when I could not see it that way. It sent me on a trajectory in running, college, and life that could have been much different, had I processed it on my own.
For that gift, Dad, I will always be grateful. Here’s to the coaches and mentors, teachers, parents, peers who reach into a friend’s or athletes’s life and grab the pen to edit their story.
Cheers to all of you! Let’s vow to keep an eye out for each other.
After all, every one of us are trying to write the masterpiece of a lifetime.
Dad, you really have inspired us. xo
coreBUNGEE is a low impact, resistance training program that provides buoyancy during exercises. 45 minute class that incorporates cardio, core strength, overall muscle strength, balance, and flexibility. The user wears a harness similar to one for climbing. A bungee hanging from the ceiling is attached to the back pick point of the harness. It allows you to jump without the strain.
Project Inspiration at Steamboat Pilates
Project Inspiration is a program for kids to learn basic fitness exercises with a teenage mentor. The program allows kids to think of goals and write them on the walls to hold themselves accountable. After their hour in the gym, the hope is that each week they gain more interest in outdoor activities or athletics and the confidence to try them.
In the news
Once a Day Pilates! (Stretch & Core with Foam Roller)
Try this :20min series to lengthen & connect in order to start or end your day feeling great!!
Roll your legs!
- Start on one hip, roll from hip to outside of knee (IT Band) forearm on floor and top foot in front for support.
- Transition to front of thighs (Quads), use core to maintain forearm plank support as you roll from hip to just above knee.
- Repeat starting on other hip (IT Band) roll on other side
- Back of legs (Hamstrings & Calves) seated with roller under one leg, using opposite leg as support. Careful with a lot of pressure behind knee. Roll foot side to side and add ankle circles.
- Seated on roller, hands behind you on floor, cross one ankle to knee & lean towards your bent leg (Piriformis) roll back & forth
- Switch legs & sides
- Have a seat in front of the roller so it is located behind your shoulders (mid back), support your head with your hands, lift your hips and roll from shoulders to lowest rib
- After a few rolls, finish with roller at the base of your shoulder blades, hips to floor, add a small curl of your pelvis (tuck) to create core connection.
- Allow head/shoulders to go back over roller to stretch upper back and belly, use core to float back up into a half roll up.
- add rotation as you come up
- Add a leg lift as you rotate to one side
- Lift both legs and rotate side to side
- Make sure to keep core engaged throughout!
Head/neck & hip stretch combo!
- Bring roller behind head, so you can relax head on top, shoulders are up against it
- Gently rotate head side to side to massage muscles of your neck
- With the head supported, take one ankle to knee into a figure 4 stretch (use a belt or towel if nec to support bringing other leg up)
- Switch legs, make sure to keep breathing!
Legs & Hips!
- Move roller so it is underneath your sacrum/tailbone sideways
- Take both legs up to sky and stretch back of legs (hamstrings), scissor alternate the legs & add helicopter circles moving legs in half circles apart from each other
- Bring legs back to parallel, bend one knee to chest, reach opposite leg long to stretch the front of your hip (Hip flexors), then open bent leg to side for inner thigh stretch & bring across for a spine rotation and outer hip stretch
- Switch legs & repeat
Shoulders & Core!
- Lay lengthwise on the roller, head to tailbone
- Circle arms, take them to a T with palms up/down, bend arms to a cactus position, reach up to the sky, scissor stretch the arms, any stretches or movements that feel good
- Bring hands behind head, elbows lift in your peripheral vision, add half roll ups from your core!
- Add rotation at the top of your roll up alt side to side
- Full body stretch arms & legs reach long
- Without the roller or any props, lay on your back on the floor (or even in bed)
- Hug one knee to your chest and bring it across your body rolling onto opposite hip as you reach opposite arm out
- Use your core to bring you back to center and switch sides
- Make sure to breath!
Steamboat Pilates Yoga & Fitness 2017