Friday, April 11, 2014

Running On - Old and New Goals

While I often focus on job or business-related themes in my blog posts, the reality is that I have radically changed the way I view work and life.

I'm approaching two years at my goal weight and have built what I hope are lifelong habits for disciplined, healthy eating and exercise.  I've relegated my career to a job that I leave at the end of the day.  I still enjoy it and try to give it a good effort, but my job no longer defines me the way it did in the past.

We are all becoming someone different, but I am becoming someone different intentionally rather than becoming someone different simply because life happens and time passes.  I am just as committed to my marriage and faith as the old me -- if not more so, but the new me is happier and more able to let go of the things I cannot control.  And the new me loves to run.

For me, running isn't always glorious but it is always worth it; All of it, from the ugly feet to the achy bits.  I don't think my joy of running is the endorphins because some runs don't feel good at all; rather I think it is the understanding that I've seen something through, despite the difficulty, that makes it worthwhile.  And then, sometimes the runs are glorious, endorphins abound and I feel unstoppable.

I've signed up for two races this year to celebrate turning 50.  I will run a 10k in September and a half-Marathon in November.  I'm excited.  I'm already easily running 7 miles so, unless I get injured, the 10k should be fine.  It is the half that is my stretch goal.  What a change that is from my old stretch goals.  This one is dependent on me; my health, my discipline, rather than on others seeing my worth.

I find it intimidating and yet, as I visualize the run and see myself finishing, with Gordy there at the finish line, it will absolutely be worth every tired, pained stride.  Because even though this post has a lot of "I," "me" and "my" in it, the fact is that my running, while accomplished alone, is a "we" activity.  My successes are "we" successes.

Throughout all of my changes, Gordy has been my constant companion and encourager, my love and best friend.  I would lose everything if, by over-committing to new goals, I were to jeopardize that first commitment to love, honor and obey (yes, I did say, "Obey,") my best friend.

Old goals - marriage, faith
New goals - 10k, half-Marathon

Bitter Fruit

 This (rather pathetic, dashed-off) poem was motivated by a series of news articles I'd read.  I don't dislike older white men but, in my industry, I've seen a disturbing trend of the top man holding on to his position well into his 70s.  Meanwhile two generations of trained and ready folks stand in the wings.  In my niche occupation, the few who have retired have been replaced by 30-something white males (with one brilliant exception).  Really, shouldn't we be having this conversation but perhaps a bit less of the actual phenomena?  Instead it seems to me that we are no longer having the conversation but the actual problem persists.

Hang on to power, old man
You fat, and white and proud
There is none who can do what you do
As well as you, for certainly
Those youthful, ambitious, fit, brown
Female, alternative-lifestyle’d
Are in-no-way able to understand
The complexities
Of leading
An organization of worth

Is it because the hiring decision for the chief staff officer in organizations like mine is made by a group of business leaders rather than a single individual or HR department (who might be more able to adhere to diversity goals)?