Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The Power of Imagination - Training for the Harvard Pilgrim 10K

This morning during my morning meditation imagination and freedom kept floating in and out of my heart. There is so much freedom and joy in imagination - in anticipation and we can harness that power to either imagine the worst or imagine the best. My husband often teases me that for somebody who believes in positivity, I can really imagine the worst but it's a habit that I am changing. As my friend and fellow author Karen Linamen says, "only nuns change their habits over night." But I digress....

There are many wonderful quotes about imagination-here are a few of my favs:

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” - Albert Einstein

"Apathy can be overcome by enthusiasm, and enthusiasm can only be aroused by two things: first, an ideal, with takes the imagination by storm, and second, a definite intelligible plan for carrying that ideal into practice." Albert Toynbee

"Imagination disposes of everything; it creates beauty, justice, and happiness, which are everything in this world."-Blaise Pascal

"Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere."-Carl Sagan

"Nothing happens unless first we dream."-Carl Sandburg

As I'm training for the Harvard Pilgrim 10K, I imagine myself running out onto the field of Gillette Stadium. Now some of you may be thinking - what's the big deal about a 10K...didn't she run the Boston Marathon in 2009. Well running any distance is still a big deal for me. Last August, I hit a wall and did not know whether or not I would run again. I was experiencing a lot of pain from cervical spine disease along with fatigue and weakness. Pain and post polio will leave you feeling exhausted and weak. But thanks to my master magician, Dr El Abd (God's hands and heart on earth) and the team at the Newton Wellesley Hospital Spine Center, I was prescribed a whole new health and fitness regimen. I used the winter months to improve cardiovascular conditioning and we revamped my entire upper and lower body strength training regimen to accommodate the cervical spine disease. I had a few trial runs last fall and then this Spring - just like the leaves return to the trees, I am able to run again. I have relinquished my desire to do long distance running - ha for many a 10K race is long distance running so it's all about perspective. I am so grateful that I can feel free and run.

I can let my imagination return to the days when I was taunted and teased and called easy out - when running to first base took tremendous effort if I even kicked the ball in kick ball or I can smile, straighten my pose and imagine myself as I run onto the field at Gillette Stadium. While no moment can ever compare to crossing the finish line of the 113th Boston Marathon, running onto the field at Gillette will be up there in wonderful moments.

Last weekend, my husband and I trained for the run at Castle Island. I've been doing intervals on the recumbent bike and either one 45 minute run or 45 minute bike ride during the week. I do strength training 3 times a week. I decided to try a little trick on Saturday -- although time does not matter at the Harvard Pilgrim 10K (the race director told me he would love to have me at the race and I can start with the 15-20 minute walkers), I wanted to imagine myself running a 15 minute mile. This was our first 4.8 mile run since I'm back to running. My husband set the pace and I kept up with him. During the run I did not look at my watch but did keep an eye on my heart rate which told me we were going at a really good clip. When we were finished, sure enough, we did just a little bit over a 15 minute mile! This was two minutes/mile off of our time a month ago. I knew that I'd been training and knew I was ready to see if I could increase our pace -- but I set the pace IN MY MIND!

So my dear readers - let your imaginations run wild, set your heart free, live from you heart and let your heart prompt your mind and Spirit to soar -- you never know where it might take you --

If you would like to let your imagination Set Sail for a New World and enter a New World purchase my books of Inspirational Poetry. 20% of book proceeds are donated to causes near and dear to my heart - Hope Charitable Trust and The Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

Spring and summer bring not only a blossoming of trees and flowers but so many wonderful celebrations - Mothers Day, Fathers Day, graduations, weddings, anniversaries -- why not let New World Greeting Cards express your sentiments to commemorate and celebrate these special occasions?

God bless, be well and dream big!
Thanks for reading.
With love,

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