Tuesday. Seriously, It’s only Tuesday? The work is piled high. In a way I’m grateful for 95 degrees today will be a good reason to stay inside and get it all done. Just got of the tennis court and figured I would throw out a short blog entry before another two weeks go by.
Had a difficult 5 mile run on Saturday. I don’t get warmed up until mile 4 and it was me and four guys and Ann the coach. Two new guys showed up (no business being in our group) and three of our regular guys. None of my regular gals showed up. We lost one of the new guys instantly once he started running an 8 minute mile. The other guys were all kind of pushing each other and I was left in the dust pretty fast. We ran up the westside of the park to do the lower 5 mile loop. I was dying until the end when I finally caught my breath. We were doing our 1 minute run 1 minute walk but I had to run during my walk to catch up with guys. Too fast… Ugh oh well, this Saturday we are back up to 12 miles but I’m only going to do 8. I would rather get 8 done than crap out on 12. I have a lot of work to do on running.
Saturday afternoon I played a tennis match. A weird one but it ended up okay. We didn’t have time to finish but by the end I was really finding a groove and felt very good. After a rocky start I was up in the end. I was inspired by a pro on the next court. She was amazing. Young, fluid, strong. Turns out she is ranked 120 or so in the world. She’s still in college (Princeton) and has already played at Wimbledon, US Open and the French Open. Wow, after watching her hit, I started to hit a little harder and let the ball flow. I was practicing letting the ball tell me where it wanted to go instead of forcing the point to be over because I don’t want to run. I did surprisingly well. I think I ran more in the match than I did in my five miles. I tried to hold onto that feeling but it was fleeting…
Sunday I rode with Jan and Jen. Well I started out with Jan and Jen. Had coffee with Jan and Jen and finished with Jan and Jen, but I couldn’t keep up with them to save my life. I was so hurting on the bike. So tired. Need some extra iron this week, I’m on it. Learning to sense when I need more and I take it. The good thing about riding with people who are faster than you is that you push through even when you don’t want to because the embarrassment of keeping everyone waiting is worse than the pain of actually riding. And we will do it again and again until we get it right. We all agreed we have a lot of work to do to just get ready to train for another Ironman. Ironman is no joke and I for one know I have a lot of work to do to show up for pre-season.
Monday day trip to CT. Doctors, doctors and more doctors for my parents. One doctor’s appointment begets two more. It’s a medical racquet. Everybody refers and nobody actually does anything. Final result is just more doctor’s appointments next week.
Hit some balls with Marlie this morning. I wasn’t feeling very sparkly. My legs were feeling dead. I was trying to find some of my spark from Saturday afternoon but it wasn’t there. Bottom line in tennis is if you don’t move your feet you’re dead. Your racquet can only do so much — its your feet that do the real work. My old coach Bogie used to call it cat paws, you are constantly kneading the court with your feet. Little fast feet. Never stop. It’s harder to move from a dead stop than from a little bounce in your step. Today I was dragging two big, hairy dead cats holding onto my tennis shoes.
Today’s lesson was found in one point where Marlie drove a deep cross-court and sent me running hard for the ball. It was one of those Hail Mary shots — just throw your racquet at it and hope for the best. Getting to the ball would be the accomplishment, getting back over the net would require some divine intervention. Marlie’s observation is that I just went for a desperate winner. “You thought you wouldn’t get to another ball so you went for a winner and missed. Throw up a lob. Maybe they’ll miss.” Hmmm, I always lob or hit a high topspin when I’m pulled off court and I need some time to get back to the center. But she’s right. I was already heading into the next court so even if I got the ball back I knew I wasn’t going to come back to hit another shot so I just went for sudden death and that’s what I got. Blaze of Glory shot, you make the winner and you are the hero. Miss — everyone still thinks you gave it a good shot (remember the movie “Tin Cup?” I so identified…. But good tennis is also about percentages. That was not a good percentage shot. Had I just hit a high loopy lob and just got it back on the court, maybe, just maybe she would have missed. Of course it was Marlie so she wasn’t going to miss, but a lesser opponent might.
These are not lessons we have not already learned. They just keep going around and at different times they pop up and remind us to get back on track. Bottom line is it is not over until it’s over and always, always make them hit another shot. That’s my mantra today. I might not get it all done. I might not do everything perfectly today. But I’m going to keep trying and hit one more shot, try one more time. Just try.
So everyone has been talking about the phenomenal woman’s soccer game this week. I think it’s a wonderful example of “it ain’t over until it’s over” and just try. In case you are the one person who missed it.