I’m pretty sure the universe mandates truckloads of parental advice to be delivered post-heartbreak. Maybe the delivery will help re-establish the PH-balance of the soil in my soul or something. Who knows. Right after the break-up my mom talked to me endlessly about love and life dispensing her thoughts and feelings on how great I am….. young I am… I’ll find someone new… so much life to live ahead of me blah blah blah.. Most of her words just wafted over my head and dissipated into oblivion. I’ve heard these things. I know these things. At the time I was just choosing to ignore them… well, some days I still do. Regardless she did say something interesting that stuck.
“Kass, you have to envision your life like that of a car. When you drive you look through the windshield, right? The windshield is your future. It holds future roads you haven’t ran, paths you have yet to uncover, memories that will unfold and people you have yet to meet. The windshield is big because there is SO MUCH to see.
The past, where you’ve been before, the roads you’ve traveled- well, that’s found in the rear-view mirror. It’s important, of course. The past memories you’ve made, the experiences you’ve had are what make you, YOU. Of course they are important. But they represent just a piece of who you are. YOU are in control of who you will become and where you want to go. The rear-view is small for a reason Kass.
Your future has so much to offer but you have to look forward in order to get there. If you look in the rear-view too much you won’t get anywhere new. In fact, you’ll crash. You have to look forward Kass. Keep looking forward.”
It’s been nearly three months since my mama uttered these words and yet here I am repeating them daily to myself. “Look forward Kass. Don’t look back, you’ll crash. Just look forward. I’ve been looking forward as much as humanly possible to create something new for myself in 2018.
In so many ways 2017 was an amazing, outstanding year.
Professionally I reentered the clinical field and have been working to develop my skills as a licensed therapist with a caseload of approximately 30-35 individual adult clients. The work is hard but the clients are amazing. Slowly but surely I’m chipping away at building my own career and standing on my own two feet.
Personally/professionally I developed amazing relationships with my Lone Runner athletes and coached many of them to PR’s
*Laura S PR’ed in the 5k and half marathon successfully completed her first MARATHON at Chicago!!!
*Jillian ran a 2 minute PR at Philadelphia 26.2 and a 5k PR.
*Kristi L PR’ed AND Boston Qualified at Hartford Marathon in October.
*Mary Beth completed her FIRST marathon at Chicago 26.2.
*Julie L in Florida PR’ed in the 5k, 10k, half AND completed first full marathon at Disney last weekend!
*Sarah M from Rhode Island took 20 MINUTES off of her previous marathon PR at Chicago this fall and PR’ed in the 5k and 10k in 2017.
It’s not just the PR’s that made 2017 an amazing year for coaching, it was the relationships that evolved out of working so closely with my athletes. Even though we live far apart together we tackle navigating how to fit in our runs as mothers, employees and even on RIDICULOUSLY cold (or hot) weather conditions. They are one amazing group of athletes and I am honored to be their coach and close friend.
Running. In 2017 I ran 2701 total miles, which is an average of 225 miles a month and an average of 56.25 miles a week! That’s a lot of miles!! I may not have ran a PR in 2017, but made some amazing memories. I ran the Boston Marathon in 3:25 and Chicago in 3:24 and countless other half marathons and other races including the Easter States 20 Miler, Black Cat 10 miler, Suftown Half Marathon in RI, Frosty Half Marathon, Iron Horse half in CT, Strawberry Shortcake 10k, etc. So many miles, so many memories.
Now that we’re in 2018 I’m committed to looking forward through the windshield. I’ve been working really hard over the past three months to rebuild myself. So much of my life and my identity was wrapped up in my previous relationship that when it collapsed I stood there among the debris with a blank expression on my face asking myself, “What do I do now?” The dust has settled and I know what I need to do during 2018.
All the races, bitches.
Seriously!! Well, sort of. I need to invest in myself. I need to live my life exactly how I want to live it. I will not wait for a relationship to evolve in order to start living my life. I can run races on my own. I can go to the movies on my own. I can make real live, adult decisions about my car, my finances, my parenting style on my own. I will not wait to be saved by a man. I will figure this shit out on my own, even if I make a crap ton of mistakes along the way (and I’m fairly certain I will, yay adulting!).
How does that translate into all the races? Well, it’s January and for the most part I have planned out the vast majority of the races I will run in 2018. I’m not waiting to be told how I will spend my weekends; I will create my own path, my own plan.
So, what races am I running??
*I started off 2018 with a 5k PR at the YMCA Frozen 5k last weekend!! It was -15 degrees out, by far the coldest I have ever raced in an miraculously I finagled a PR!!! I ran a 19:49, 6:22 pace (a solid 8 seconds faster than my previous 19:58 PR- I will take it!) .
*Next up: Martha’s Vineyard 20 Miler with my athletes and friends, Mary-Beth, Sarah M and Eric W. 🙂 yay!!
*GUESS WHAT MOM AND DAD I’M RUNNING AN ULTRA! My friend and BADASS mother runner, Sarah Slater has been winning pretty much every 50 and 100 miler she’s been running over the past year. Since she lives in CT I don’t see her too often. Soooo, when she told me that she’s running a 6 hour timed trail race in Canton, MA in March (To Hale and Back) and asked me if I wanted in I couldn’t say no. I figure that at the very least I’m in for 20 miles and then I’ll see where I’m at. I’ll write more about this adventure in the future. How does this impact my current training? I’M KEEPING MY VOLUME HIGH. Much higher than usual for this time of year. But honestly, I’m just going to hang with my bud for as long as humanly possible and we’ll see what happens on the trail.
*Newport half marathon in April
*Sugarloaf marathon in May
*Next fall: the current plan is to do Philly Marathon!
So I have something else INCREDIBLY EXCITING to announce!!! I just started a 1.5 year long certificate program at John F. Kennedy University in California in Sport Psychology. My first course? Kinesiology. I have weekly reading, papers, tests- everything. I am determined to merge my passions of mental health and running to be able to work with mother runners and hopefully student athletes in the future to aid in improving mental fitness during performance based events. Registering for this program is a huge personal and financial investment. It’s a leap of faith, but it feels right. Sooooo we’ll see what happens!
I am filling up my weekends how I want to fill them to be filled. On the weeks I have Lilly we read Harry Potter, paint, bake and make music videos when we’re trapped in the apartment during a snow storm. Muhahaha.. And the weeks I don’t have her? Well, I’m working hard to create a life I want to live, a life I’m proud of and one that feels nourishing. Signing up for this 1.5 year long certificate program in Sport Psychology and registering for all the races throughout the year is a start.
I will not wait for life to happen to me. I will happen to life.
I will no longer be passive in my life. I will be an active participant in my life. And I will choose how I want to live it. 🙂
If I happen upon a gentleman caller who (as my friend and athlete Lisa says…) is “worthy of me” then fantastic. I’m open to meeting and dating gentlemen. I’m open to being courted. TBC, girl gotta eat! But I’m not going to have my world center around finding a man. I don’t need a relationship to live a happy life. I don’t want to be alone, but I am learning that I CAN be alone if I have to. I can do this. I will do this. I am doing this.
Can’t stop. Won’t stop. (looking forward)
The Lone Runner.