Last night I ran the furthest distance I have ever run: 7 miles! I'm sore and my feet hurt, but I did it, and honestly the last 4 miles were easier than the first 3. When I got to the last .2 I kept repeating 100%, 100%, 100% to myself over and over. This wasn't a reminder to myself to give 100%, rather, it was a reflection on a story that my sister-in-law told me over the weekend.
seven freakin' miles, betch!
If you know me in real life or have been reading since 2010, you know I had a serious bacterial infection that almost killed me and kept me on life support for 12 days. My lungs went into acute respiratory failure and I spent those 12 days having a machine breathe for me so my lungs could rest.
My sister-in-law is a physical therapist. One of her patients mentioned that her nephew had been seriously ill a few years ago and had lots of lingering health problems. Through their conversation, my sister-in-law found out that the man, now 28, had the same illness as me, Lemierre's Syndrome. However, he was treated differently than me. They didn't know what it was and so he spent a lot of time in the hospital getting worse and worse, suffering permanent organ damage. He's okay today, but only has 80% of his lung capacity. He can't workout and has to take breaks when walking. At age 28.
I feel so lucky. I was blessed with a team of doctors who diagnosed me early and treated me aggressively. I have no lingering effects. I never ran before my illness and now I run races. It's amazing!
So, when I wanted to stop during my run, I reminded myself that I have 100% of my lung capacity and I'm damn lucky I do. Sometimes it helps to stop and get a little perspective and be thankful for the hand you've been dealt.