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Snake River Canyon half marathon in 2007; my second best time so far......

Snake River Canyon half marathon in 2007; my second best time so far……

Walking is basic self-propulsion.  Running is a step towards flying! Running re-charges my soul like nothing else. Many sports and activities are highly dependent on technology; you have to buy great gear to be competitive. Running is a great equalizer!  Many of the shoes are cool, but some of the best runners can go barefoot and still excel. Competitive running has wonderful transparency! You really can’t bullshit anyone about how much training you’ve done. It shows in your results! So my current shortage of training is clear.

Annie and I went shopping yesterday. One of our stops was to trade in her uncomfortable hiking boots. A wonderfully friendly and knowledgeable woman helped Annie pick new boots and supportive insoles. Annie walked in them afterwards and says they feel great.  More adventures to come!  Yay!

The woman who helped us is a runner, so we talked a lot about running and other adventures. She is really enjoying marathons. Now I feel excited about running again! Running has blessed me with many of the best highs of my life. Are there more to come?  I just returned from 80 minutes of running around Bennington Lake and Rooks Park. I want to run more often!  Maybe at the Tri-Cities Half Marathon?  How about the Badger Mountain Challenge? It’s so fun to meet healthy people!  🙂


A day in the life of the Shankster

I tackle the challenges that keep streaming in

to an electronic in-box that measures my wins,

since our mission is worthy: we help people heal.

Addressing co-workers, I try hard to peel

back the layers of pessimism, contempt and dismay

while laughing and joking and mixing in play.

Extra stress builds up, so I head to the Y,

Striding and lifting and stepping to highs!

I’m inspired by soreness, I feel that it’s good.

It promises muscles that work as they should.

Depleted, yet smiling I seek out some chow

Delicious re-charging that sweetens the now.

I spar some with Nicko, in words or in play,

his spirit’s a bright spot in almost every day!

I move off to blog world to see what you’ve found

blissfully noticing my feet on the ground!

Annie's 21st birthday celebration!

Annie’s 21st birthday celebration!  Her husband Zach & I

My daughter Annie grew from the baby in the picture on the wall to the spunky, sparkly woman above.  She brings joy, adventure, curiosity, nutrition, exercise, humor and flavor with her every visit.  This weekend’s flavors have included kale, spinach, chocolate and coffee.  Her new Vita-mix blender churned up wonderful smoothies, frozen yogurt and frappes.  I’m feeling hydrated, energized and happy!  Do I need a super blender of my own?

Annie just started nursing school, so we got blood pressure testing and heart and lung checkups.  I got a clean bill of health, as expected, so we did a lot of weight-lifting and cardiovascular exercise at the gym.  Last night we even danced a little after a tasty dinner. How sweet it is!  🙂

I will smile today. Over and over again! It’s a great plan; I borrowed it. I’m supposed to pass it on to you.  Will you take it please?


It’s never been more clear to me that attitude is everything.

I can always find many things to be grateful for. It is gratitude that carries me to happiness. Making a gratitude list has rescued me from despair, discouragement, loneliness and the like.  It’s medicine for self-pity.

I can always find many things to complain about. I can choose to be disgruntled.  That’s a silly way to live.  We only get so much time. I want to enjoy mine!

I can choose to live in happiness. It should be an easy choice! I haven’t always had this clarity. I’m so grateful to be grateful!

I woke up again!  Yippee!  I’d dance around the house, but walking is hard.  Judging “good” or “bad” is truly beyond me.  How would I know?  I’m just me.  That’s freeing.  No pressures, just opportunities.  How to see them all?  Both opportunities and the myriad of ways to respond to them.  How to choose well?  How to expand awareness?  Culture wellness?  Open new ideas to polish older ones?  Humility, variety, discovery, adventure, curiosity, surrender, honesty, open-mindedness, willingness and acceptance?

Happy new day!   🙂

Personal Training Outdoors - Lunges Category:F...

I was determined to get a good leg workout tonight.  I think it worked.  I hope I can walk tomorrow!  The lunges with hand weights had me breathing hard.  I did three sets of fifty, which is more than I’m used to.  Since my legs felt unstable upon departure, after a bunch of other leg lifts, I believe I made progress.  I have been happy with the results of my latest weight lifting plan.  I will keep pushing my mind, trying new things, and believing in amazing dreams.  I’m grateful to those of you who help me think and live this way!  Thank you!   🙂

American football seems like modern warfare!  The warriors can shake hands afterwards; maybe we are evolving…

Yes, the injuries are sad.  Head trauma is prevalent and debilitating.  Ex-players are hobbled by joint injuries.  Steroids are used to add muscle bulk, degrading health.  I am grateful that my son chose to quit football, related to concerns over the head trauma.  He’s a great student and his joints still work.  He’ll be grateful for this for the rest of his life.

But the excitement of football is undeniable!  Testosterone-filled warriors pound, race, chase and battle with chiseled bodies.  Their incredible athleticism adds to shows of grace, quickness, power and brute strength.  Is it modern warfare with fewer casualties?  Fans feel the excitement, sometimes with the vigor of the players.

It’s an improvement over dueling with guns.  It’s preferable to spears, clubs, arrows, cannons, machine guns, bayonets and knives.  It’s a huge improvement over the bombs of Hiroshima and Nagasaki!

Men need to battle.  Football is better than many other options!  Go Seahawks!  🙂

We are offered unlimited life paths, with so many forks in our roads.  Bountiful chances to stray, play, grow and show just who we are.  These choices define exactly who we are.  If we truly accept that we do indeed have all these choices, and believe that we can follow any path we like, we are free in spirit.  When we search our heart and soul to discover who we really are, we can make conscious choices to follow our values.

I had to start with empowerment.  Conscious or not, EVERYTHING we do is a choice.  How powerful!  So I am responsible for who I am.  No one else did it.  They did do everything they did.  I chose, often passively, reactively, irrationally, emotionally, defensively, selfishly and/or irresponsibly, how to respond or act.  These are lessons, whether I learned them or not.  They tend to repeat themselves.

So the troubles I’ve faced resulted from choices I’ve made.  Likewise for the sobriety, growth, peacefulness, acceptance, joy and gratitude.  I know in my heart that when I make the best choices I can, with as much faith, honesty and humility as I can muster, life will go better than if I reverted to making choices based on greed, pride, lust and fear.  The details make the story fun. Every step we take is on the biggest stage of all.  It’s almost always “take one.”  There are few Mulligans, do-overs or re-takes.  It seems like a good idea to be on our best behavior!

Frankly speaking, here are some of my beliefs:

  1. I can’t turn chocolate into muscle!
  2. Variety really is the spice of life!
  3. Our ideas and actions can inspire others.  Your blog posts inspire me!
  4. Belief, or faith –> positive change.
  5. Inspiration + action = success.
  6. Success –> more success –> synergistically better life!


I love health, humor, adventure, exercise, romance and competition. Well, I just love life! ( :

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