Friday, November 30, 2012

Tough Mudder, Final Countdown Pt 4

TM Minus 4
I had a great run this morning, despite a case of head games. I debated between a new five-mile course that I just figured out and my usual route. I picked the usual route because it was a school morning and I didn’t have time, but I felt like I was wimping out with just three miles. Then I reminded myself (several times!) that 3.8 rounds up to four, not down to three. Not bad for a school day!

I also keep thinking about how this whole thing started almost a year ago. One friend mentioned Tough Mudder while we were cardio kickboxing away. I, standing too near the stereo, thought she said “Tough Mother” and spent the rest of the set envisioning laundry-lifting events and toddler-chasing dashes. Then we took a break and she described the course. We all agreed it was way too masochistic. Electric shocks? Barbed wire? Fire? Ice water?

Then we looked into it and discovered that a simple description misses the point of the Mudder. We were all up for conquering some inner challenges, so a few months later, we were in. And now we’re here. Deeeeeeeep breath.

TM Minus 3
After a great aerobic-focused class today, I heard the bad news.

WHAT???!!! I have to REST for the next two days? Are you crazy? Every time I see someone out running, I start planning my next workout.

“If they’re out, I could be out, too. When can I run?”

In other news, our team is down to the three of us ladies. We’ve been working out together for over a year, so I’m pretty darn okay with that. Proud to mud with them, actually!

Funny how all the men dropped out of our team….

We had fun today putting together strategies for the obstacles and planning our wardrobes. Oh, yeah. Fashionable, functional Mudder wear! Still, I’m trying not to think about it all too much. Especially since I have to rest.

TM Minus 2
Well, the nerves are setting in! No matter when I go to bed, I wake up five or six hours later. That’s always a sure sign that I’m nervous.

This morning, we woke up to the sound S. with a barking cough. She stayed home from school today, so there’s a fair amount of fetch-and-carry going on here. Other than that, my goals for today are to super-hydrate and rest. Umm….

So I’m constantly drinking water, peeing, doing obsessive cleaning projects, drinking, peeing, getting annoyed at being interrupted in my cleaning, drinking, and peeing, then cleaning, drinking, and peeing some more.

Can you guess how I handle nerves? Yeah. I clean. My friend cooks to calm herself—I think Big A. wants to trade me in sometimes. He’d rather have elaborate meals in a messy house!

I have to say, I’m bummed that I’m a little tired and possibly catching a cold…but I don’t care, really. I’m going to leave it all out on the course, whatever I’ve got.

Omigawd! Help! Does one of you want to do this FOR me???<---- Random panic attack. Right there.

TM Minus 1
Well, folks, here we are!

The last twenty-four hours have included all the normal mom stuff, a sick (and bored!) kid with a barking cough, and FOUR poop accidents (3 preschooler, 1 dog. I figure the dog was just trying to fit in.), and a series of tantrums, meltdowns, and scheduling/cleaning crises.

So I figure that if no one yells, “Mommmm-mieee!” tomorrow, the Tough Mudder will be a morning at the spa.

Actually, I have pretty much entered the zone—what will be, will be, and the only way out is through.

My eyes are on the prize(s): a great morning with awesome friends, feeling like a kid again, beating the h*ll out of that course, a Dos Equis and warm, dry clothes at the end, then a weekend laughing and hanging out with my family and friends.

Best of all, I got to read this article to start my day. It reminded me that, while this is a relatively low cost challenge I’ve undertaken, thousands of others have risked life and limb in our country’s service. Thousands still do, every day.

And some of them make the Tough Mudder their goal as they learn to live without things we take for granted—like arms and legs. If they can do it, so can we. And I will do it gratefully, with profound respect in my heart for our service members and their families.

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