Back Where I Come From

 

Anybody know the Kenny Chesney song “Back Where I Come From”?  It’s an older one but one of his best, in my humble country-music-loving opinion 🙂  So, a couple weeks ago I spent two weeks of my life redecorating our community hall and this song kept playing in my head.

Why, you may ask?

Because our community hall is one of the symbols of “back where I come from.”  See, I’ve been blessed to come from a long line of people who settled in southern Kansas during the Homestead Act of the 1870’s/1880s!  And my family has been part of keeping up this community hall going back multiple generations.  And as I was doing this-

I realized that not many people get to be so blessed!

I don’t actually know very many people who live in this area because, well, that’s where their family has always lived!  You see it among the farmers (which is a dwindling population), but among my regular friends?  A lot are transplants.

And it also occurred to me that this is one of the many jobs a farmwife takes on that is behind the scenes.  My girls asked me, “Mom, why are you doing this???” as I was scraping wallpaper, patching sheet rock and repainting.  My answer?

“Because I can and it needs to be done.”

This is me with country music blaring in the background!

That’s a farmwife’s theme in life!  One that I learned as a farmgirl watching my mom and dad, my grandma and grandpa, my aunt and uncle.  It’s a lesson that my girls are learning, whether they realize it or not.  There are things that are just in your blood and keeping up the community hall is just one of the many things I saw and took for granted growing up.

It all goes back to “Back Where I Come From.”  There are things that get passed down in an agriculture community that stick with you and define you.  As I was painting, I was remembering all the times I’ve been in that hall- graduation parties, anniversary parties, baby showers, bridal showers, family holidays, community reunions, 4H meetings.  This community hall doesn’t belong to just my family, but to our whole township out there.  Many other people rent it and use it for those same things.  It’s used kind of like a church basement, except that we don’t care what denomination you belong to.  The one thing we all have in common is where we came from.  And it brings many of us together for a variety of celebrations several times a year.  It’s an honor to be part of the next generation preserving that.

That’s where I come from 🙂

Where do you come from?  How has that defined you as an adult?

 

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Training for a Half Marathon (Confessions of a Slow Runner)

Ever think about training for and running a half marathon?  Yeah, me neither 😉  My running career has been less than illustrious to say the least and I was positive I did NOT have it in me to run a half.  But, as they say, never say never….

So, my running has looked like this over the years :

Start training in March

Barely get up to 3 miles

Run a local 5K in June

Take a couple more runs in June

Quit until next March

I could barely eke out the energy to complete the 5K and I was SLOW!  Not the “Oh, I only run an 8 minute mile” slow (ha, ha), but the “I’m pushing it to get under 12 minutes a mile.”  See, I tell ya, I truly am a slow runner!

I also suffer from asthma (my childhood asthma came back with a vengeance a couple years ago), which I used as my excuse for not being able to run very well.  It definitely contributes to it, but I’ve come to realize it is a surmountable obstacle.

Enter January, 2017.  My mom, who has been a fellow slow runner for the last 10 years, decided that for her upcoming 60th birthday in May, she would like to complete a half marathon.  And it just so happens that there is one in Wichita at the beginning of May.  You can guess where this is going… I offered to run it with her.

We decided to run it using intervals.  This is where we run 3 minutes and walk 1 minute.  We also only do a long run every two weeks and then run 3 miles 3 times a week in between.  It’s based on a method designed by Jeff Galloway.  It’s suppose to be easier on your joints and allow anyone to run a half marathon- even if you’re like me and you can barely hack a 5K.

So, since the first of January, this slow runner has been training.  My last long run I did 9 miles!  It was a bit brutal, but I completed it.  Last Monday, I ran 6 miles and I noticed that my ankles and hip joints didn’t bother me at all!  Previously, my joints would be pretty sore after a long run.  I think I’m becoming conditioned to it.  I seriously never thought I’d get this far in my running career!

On the plus side, a 3 mile run seems like a walk in the park now 🙂

The moral of the story is, I encourage you to  try hard things- like a being a slow runner tackling a half marathon!  Don’t compare yourself to other runners (yeah, I know that can be hard!).  The race is in 3 weeks, so I’ll keep you posted on how it goes.

Are you a runner?  Do you enjoy it?  Any other tips for training for a half marathon?

Feel free to share with your friends!