Run the hill is a phrase I use when things get hard. Run the hill is focus. Run the hill is determination. Run the hill is tenacity, strength and endurance. Running the hill is the thing you have to do to become a better runner.
On a long stretch of highway you can see the hill, ahead in the distance waiting for your arrival. There are certain things you must do as you approach it. You must unclench your fists and relax your shoulders. You must straighten your back and expand your chest. You must raise your head. Most importantly, you must turn up your music.
As you begin the ascent, you must find a point just ahead of you to become your mini goal. It may be a crack in the road, a sign or a post, a tree or a flower. All you aim for is that next little goal. It is very important not to look, glance at, or focus on the top of the hill, it is overwhelming.
You must stay focused on your mini goal until you pass it and then hone in on the next crack, tree, post or flower until again you must select a new one.
As your music keeps your pace, as your eyes look forward, as your chest expands to receive oxygen and your head is held up to supply that oxygen, you begin to realize you are running the hill. Little by little, breath by breath, one leg and then the other stepping up, up, up. You are running the hill.
Those things in life which are the hardest to do are the things we must do. They make us stronger, more patient, compassionate, they improve us.
They give us the experiences in life which require focus, determination, tenacity and perseverance.
Doing hard things helps us to grow. At times those hard things may seem overwhelming and so you set a mini-goal.
Perhaps solving one problem at a time, improving a fault little by little, mending a relationship, gaining knowledge, overcoming pain, hurt, anger, depression or addiction. One hour at a time, one day at a time, one lesson at a time, one achievement at a time.
When you reach the crest of a hill and you know within a minute you are will be at the top, you must push with that one last burst of energy that is hidden deep inside of you, but is always there.
For a brief second, just an instant, you are able to see the view from the top of the hill. The view is glorious, spectacular, breath taking and not because of what you may see, but because of what you feel ~ your moment of triumph.
You will feel your strength, your determination, tenacity and endurance, all of the those characteristics that helped get you to the top of the hill.
Then, you begin to run, down, down. No longer is a mini goal needed. Your breath begins to relax, no need to concentrate on the song to keep pace.
For a moment you have a repose, a rest from the intensity of pushing yourself, from doing something physically and mentally challenging.
Even though you know that there will always be another hill, you immerse yourself in the glory of running without effort. You feel light, you are floating, you are free from the burden of climbing the hill and all you can do is look in wonder and gratitude at what is around you.
You feel like you can fly.
Becoming a stronger you.
We cannot avoid running the hill, we must run it when it is there before us. We must not be discouraged if it not our best run, or our strongest, or fastest or our most successful. Running the hill will be different every time, because all hills are different. The constant lies in us and the tools we use from experience, to make the run bearable, to finish. Remember that each time you run the hill, you become a stronger you.
Run the hill, run the hill, run the hill. It is what I repeat over and over in my mind as I make the climb, both in running and in life.
Some people have asked if they can send me a gift — are you freakin’ kidding me? Of course you can. Gifts are always welcome and greatly appreciated. New gifts will support: 1) Kiva 2) Me getting out to see my family 3) New paintings 4) You! Because you are awesome. Choose between: She’s funny $10 She’s freakin’ hilarious $20 She’s inspired me $50 Just for fun. $100.00 USD I’ll have what she’s having $500 I’ll drink the koolaid $1,000 Thanks!
One day, I took two of my students to the center of town shopping. They would hand me t~shirts to try on. I would hold up a shirt and get the teenage big eyed face lights up yes, or the opposite eye rolled absolute no.
One day, I brought my two boys with me on a theater trip to the town center together with my class. The Italian professor gave me huge compliments. My boys deserved them. They behaved so well, just smiled, had fun and were part of the group. I particularly remember watching the theater performance from the box in the balcony. I had gone up there with my two boys to rest because there was a red velvet couch.
Slowly but surely my students spotted me, and came to keep me company. In the end there were nine of us in the box and my boys on their laps. My boys sat forward with their arms crossed, chin on their arms watching the entire theater performance. It was magical. ´¯`»¸¸.·☆
We have five more days together before we part ways. It this what it means to be a mom, wife and teacher?
It’s like when you shut your eyes, then you open them and see your kids are grown. Time flies so fast. We want to capture it and hold onto it. Especially the kids. I want to hold on to every smile they make.
They are so happy go lucky, true boys boyz. Yesterday was a big day for us in growth. My littlest found his balance on his new bike.
I watched him learn with a happy heart. He got the glow in his eye and looked at me with big smiles as he propelled himself forward wabbly and all.
Students to me: Prof, where are you going?
Me: To get something for my son’s birthday.
Them: But you said that yesterday.
Me: For my kids every day is their birthday.
We cross the street and we are in the middle of the most beautiful Italian countryside and orchards. It makes my heart stop. I try to capture it with words but it’s bigger than me. Sort of like driving with rows of seedlings.
Violet sunset sky going down across golden hay.
It seems ridiculous to even attempt to describe the beauty. Take a cool deep breath and close your eyes. You can feel the cool air in your lungs and the warm embracing sun over head. Coolish in the shade.
Nature’s beauty restores our souls.
I’ve been running lately a big more than usual. Last night, my boys were invited to come with me. They out ran me ~ boy are they fast. It was so cute though running side by side with my six year old, him looking up at me smiling. It truly warms my heart. My big guy going off ahead ’til the farm house.
Dinner ready, table set when I come home. Hot bath. No bubbles today.
I try to catch the beauty with words but we all know it’s futile. Still, if I close my eyes I can see and breathe the fresh air and know it’s all good, it’s all beautiful, pretty, sweet, and for us to behold.
Pre announcement: I’d just like to tell my loyal blog readers that I’m busy organizing a painting give away. I’ve painted about six paintings and I’m getting them ready for a showing and give away on my blog probably by the end of the week. Wish me luck as it’s a bit confusing to sort out the details. xo Julie
I am offering a free membership trial to all blog readers with the chance to win a painting.
I’d just like to tell my loyal blog readers that I’m busy organizing a painting give away. I’ve painted about six paintings and I’m getting them ready for a showing and give away on my blog probably by the end of the week.
Wish me luck as it’s a bit confusing to sort out the details.
To participate you I will need your name and email below. Thank you!
I’ve been busy in my garden making more paintings. I love them. I found a program online that shows me what they will look like framed under various settings. I’m sharing only one today as I find it’s fairly time consuming.
The painting you see is the one that I entered the contest in in our local town. It was a funny day actually. The way it works is you have to stop by in the morning with a piece of paper, pay the entry fee, I think about $10, and the nice people put a stamp on the back showing it’s a new paper.
Then you have until 3.30 to turn in your finished piece.
The only problem I encountered was time. I had lunch plans that day with my family out of town. At 2p I said I had better get busy.
I flew into my garden, grabbed my paints and started painting. The blank canvas was TRULY overwhelming.
I loved what I painted however. It’s just Italy, porticoes, wine, a table, you know, a swimming pool street.
I won a prize and was honored. When I turned in my painting, it was still wet. I drove to the center of town holding my painting up to my car heater. I signed it right after I parked.
The only catch was I had to give it to the city hall. I’m happy to have done so. I hope you enjoy it.
This is my idea for my flower painting give away. I’m going to make a little video when I get my hair decent, and show you four new paintings I made. Then you will just choose the one you like, leave a comment and I’ll pick a winner. That should work, right?