A life Well Lived

(Audio: link) audio:http://www.RunRunLive.com/PodcastEpisodes/ buddy-Eulogy.output.mp3]
Link buddy-Eulogy.output.mp3

A life well lived.

I’m standing in the front yard in my pajamas.  It’s 18 degrees and everything is frozen hard with that late January freeze that penetrates deep into the earth.  I’m holding Buddy’s emaciated body up to see if maybe he wants to pee.  He’s warm as he leans against me. 

He hangs his head and collapses on weak legs.  I pick him up.  So light now.  Just a warm bag of bones.  Nothing left of that strong dog that would sprint laps in this yard or launch himself 10 feet in the air to grab a frisbee in this yard or steal the soccer ball off my foot in our yard.  His yard. 

I have a photograph that I gifted to my wife one year, many years ago.  It’s an aerial photograph of the yard some outfit was peddling in our neighborhood.  The photo is late summer.  There in the green of the grass sits Buddy, ever watchful, surveying the land from his perch on the hill.  Always at the ready.

I stayed home with him yesterday.  I slept in the chair next to his bed the night before.  It was a long night.  I was woken every hour or so by the grinding of his teeth and the spasming of his body from long, violent seizures.  I put my hands on him and tell him it’s ok as he rides them out. 

Oddly it was a comfort to me.  To be able to spend this time close with him.  I stayed home from work and built a fire in the fireplace.  I sat on the couch and read while he stumbled around or slept. 

It brought back memories of a parallel time when my oldest daughter Katie was born.  I was in transition between jobs and took a couple weeks off to stay home with the newborn.  I quickly discovered that all I could do was hold that warm infant on my chest and read.  And we spent that time together.  And I was grateful for it. 

After this long night I thought this was the day, but he perked up.  He was stumbling around the house.  He was eating some treats.  I figured I’d give him another night.  He earned it.  But today is that day. 

He was doing fine a month ago on his 16th birthday, but something happened.  Some sort of system failure.  He lost 15 pounds in less than a month.  The seizures.  This morning he could not stand.  It happens quickly.  He’s exhausted. 

It’s a difficult puzzle to unravel with a pet.  How much of this is me trying to avoid my own pain and how much of it for them?  How do you make that decision or more importantly, when do you make that decision?  We can’t fathom their thoughts and emotions. As close as they are to us, they are still an alien mind.  Most of the narrative our own egomaniacal anthropomorphizing.

It’s a weighty thing to have to decide the time of death for a friend. 

These last couple days he hasn’t been eating his food, but he has been more than willing to eat our food.  As sick and weak as he is, even when we have to hold him up, he’ll inhale that hamburger and chicken and chees with a pepperoni chaser.  Good for him.  Getting the last laugh.

Most people have many pets in their lives, but there is always that one.  The one that grew up with your kids.  That one that was your best friend.  Buddy was that pet for us. 

He was not without neuroses.  He was irrationally afraid of thunder and fireworks.  He was hard-wired to chase anything that moved, no matter what your opinion on the appropriateness of that chasing was.

But he was the best dog I have ever known.  He was my running partner.  He shared thousands of miles of road a trail at my side, stride for stride.  He was incredibly smart, incredibly athletic and the kindest, gentlest guileless soul to his pack. 

How many spiritual moments did we share in the trails?  Hundreds.  Thousands.  Uncountable.  Truly shared, because he an I had this resonance in the woods, this shared joy of the joyous bounty of nature beneath our feet and around us.  We celebrated together.  We were a pack of two, brothers, and single-minded on the hunt. 

As men and dogs have been for eons.  Filled and vibrating with the perfectness of the forest.  Permeated with that primeval joy. 

I’ll miss that.  But, I’ll also celebrate it.  Because how lucky am I to have intersected with this soul in this time and place?  How much fuller am I?  He gave me more than I can ever give.  He was an example of kindness and joy.  He was my friend and his passing will leave a big hole in all our lives. 

It was a life well lived. 

 

Direct download: buddy-Eulogy.output.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 8:48pm EDT

The RunRunLive 4.0 Podcast Episode 4-400 – Matt makes it stick

(Audio: link) audio:http://www.RunRunLive.com/PodcastEpisodes/epi4401.mp3]
Link epi4401.mp3

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks - http://www.marathonbq.com/qualify-for-the-boston-marathon-in-14-weeks/

Hello, my friends and welcome to the RunRunLive Podcast episode 4-401. 

Nice to be back in the saddle from the holidays.  I feel like I’ve had a good couple months.  I took an extra week on my cadence for this one because It was the holidays and, frankly, I had a lot going on.  Plus I was sick.  I got whatever cold is going around.  Not the flu.  Not pneumonia. Just a cough that hung around for the better part of 2 weeks. 

I managed to hold the line on my diet through the holidays.  I did not lose a bunch of weight, but I did eat relatively cleanly and avoided most of the sweets and adult beverages of the season.  This was my plan, so well done me.  This puts me in a healthy spot to hit my Boston training hard and lose 10-15 pounds. Because I think that’s what I’m going to need to do to have any shot of requalifying. 

People think ‘Hey, Boston is in the spring! You’ve got plenty of time!” But that’s not really true.  When you turn the corner to a new year on January 1st you are only 3 and ½ months away, which in broad strokes means 14 weeks.  A typical hard training cycle for me is 12 weeks with a 2 week taper, so it’s game on. 

I’m not starting from scratch and I’m healthy and I’m mentally enthusiastic.  The dark times will come, but as of now I’m in a good spot. 

Today we chat with Matt who is a team mate of mine.  He’s got a great story.  And it’s a timely story as we ease into the ‘resolution season’.  Listen to what it took for Matt to find the courage to switch the momentum and begin his transformation. 

In section 1 I’ll give you a wrap up on the Groton Marathon, which, against the odds we managed to pull off successfully last Sunday.  Thinking about it, if I include that in my week, I’m over 50 miles for week one of my training!  Feel pretty good for that.

In section 2 I’ll perambulate about goals and stuff, because, hey, it’s that time of year.

When I was out running the Groton Marathon with my buddies I told them I had two topics that I wanted to discuss.  The first was the ending of the movie Road House and the second was the Boston Marathon of Sex.   Now, this being a family friendly show I’ll reserve the latter explanation for my members feed. I’m writing that as we speak and I crack myself up.

But, I was watching, or more to the point being forced to watch the movie Road House with Patrick Swazey, may he rest in piece, and like so many of the movies from that era, the ending didn’t make any sense. 

So he rips the one bad guy’s throat out.  Then he goes after the big bad guy.  Kills 4 of his henchmen and then has the final fight with the big bad guy.  In the end he decides not to rip that guy’s throat out but the friendly villagers kill the bad guy with shotguns. 

Shortly after the police show up.  Now we have been told that the police are in the back pocket of the bad guy.  The police ask, ‘What happened?’ and everyone says “We didn’t see anything…”  And that’s it.  Cut to the final seen of Swazey skinny dipping with the love interest. 

So, let me get this straight… There’s 6 dead bodies, one of which has Patrick Swazey’s knife sticking out of his chest, and the police just shrug their shoulders and say, ‘Well, I guess since no one saw anything…it’s all good… nothin to see here…”?

I’ve seen enough episodes of Law and Order to know they’re not getting off that easy! It’s ok, I ripped his throat out in self-defense…

Plus, they shot this guy with old shotguns.  He probably wouldn’t be dead yet when the police come in.  If it was bird shot he’d just be uncomfortable.   Maybe he had a heart attack from the shock. 

But think about all the movies you’ve seen where the end is a big pile of dead guys and it’s ok. 

That will give you something to talk about on your next long run.

On with the show.

I’ll remind you that the RunRunLive podcast is ad free and listener supported.  What does that mean? It means you don’t have to listen to me trying to sound sincere about Stamps.com or Audible.. (although, fyi, my MarathonBQ book is on audible) We do have a membership option where you can become a member and as a special thank you, you will get access to member’s only audio. There are book reviews, odd philosophical thoughts, zombie stories and I curate old episodes for you to listen to.  I recently added that guy who cut off is foot so he could keep training and my first call with Geoff Galloway.   “Curated” means I add some introductory comments and edit them up a bit.  So anyhow – become a member so I can keep paying my bills.

M

The RunRunLive podcast is Ad Free and listener supported.  We do this by offering a membership option where members get Access to Exclusive Members Only audio and articles.

  • Member only race reports, essays and other bits just for you!

Links are in the show notes and at RunRunLive.com

Become a member

Section one – 2018 Groton Marathon- http://runrunlive.com/the-groton-marathon-2018

Voices of reason – the conversation

Matt Schorer

Matt is father, husband and triathlete from upstate NY who recently made the successful move to reclaim his health.  He trains with Jeff Kline at DailyFitBook.net

Matt is currently training for the Lake Placid IronMan in Late June of this year.  

https://www.facebook.com/fatguytotriguy/

https://www.facebook.com/matt.schorer.71/about

https://www.facebook.com/dailyfitbook/

Section two – Your Best Self - http://runrunlive.com/your-best-self

Outro

Well, my friends kicked off your new year with a thorough listening to of  the RunRunLive Podcast episode 4-401.  Check that off your list.  

Next up for me is a whole lot of training.  I’m going deep.  I can’t control the weather but I can control whether or not I show up and whether or not I consistently do the work.   I’ve got a good jump start on this cycle.  I’ve been working on my core a stretching daily. 

I skipped the Hangover Classic this year. I was still fighting a cold and didn’t think jumping in the Atlantic Ocean was such a good idea. 

I did finally start working on the startup sales book.  I pushed the introduction out to LinkedIn.  If anyone is interested in being a proof reader or a friendly critical eye I welcome the help.  One of the things I’m trying to do better is to ask for help.  I tend to want to do everything myself and that has a built in ceiling to it.

I see the people in my community starting to complain about all the people showing up at the gym this week.  My experience is that they tend to peter out after 10 days or so. 

I’ve got a couple suggestions for this first of the year gym bottleneck. 

First, if it really bugs you go early or late.  I don’t care what time of year it is, you’ll have plenty of elbow room at 5:30 or 6:00 in the morning. 

Second, as we heard from Matt today, some of those out of breath people ARE going to stick it out.  Let’s try to lean in and encourage them.  Be that person that is the tipping point in that emerging healthy person’s life. 

Take this as an opportunity to spread the good news and set a good example.  This is a good way for you to practice abundance in the new year.

And, if you see Patrick Swazey, run because he’s been dead for a decade so the zombie apocalypse will be under way. 

And I’ll see you out there.

MarathonBQ – How to Qualify for the Boston Marathon in 14 Weeks - http://www.marathonbq.com/qualify-for-the-boston-marathon-in-14-weeks/

Http://www.marathonbq.com

http://runrunlive.com/my-books

Rachel -> http://www.nextlevelnutrition.fitness/contact-appointment/

Coach Jeff -> https://dailyfitbook.com/

Direct download: epi4401.mp3
Category:Running -- posted at: 6:05pm EDT



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