Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Dear Coach...

Dear Coach Derrick,

Thank you so much for another GREAT year of training. I still can't believe that the girl who met you for coffee to discuss training 2 years ago was me. She had many dreams and I'm the one who gets to live them.

You took a "middle of the packer" and moved me that much closer to the front, but more then that your positive approach to running and life has also been a great inspiration to me. I am just discovering that running is a sport that bestows upon its participants so many gifts beyond winning and medals. There is the discipline and satisfaction one gains from putting in the training, the never ending journey of self awareness every race reveals and the amazing camaraderie of other runners as an omnipresent force making this whole experience a safe place to explore and challenge our limits without the fear of failure or judgement pushing us forward towards our greatest potential.

I am so appreciative to have had the opportunity to share my journey with you and Sara and the group of runners who have also found refuge here in the SHA family.

Thank you again and I am looking forward to another year of training and self discovery for myself and everyone here.

Sincerely yours,

Eliza Murphy

Sunday, July 4, 2010

...I can WIN any race I enter...

Like I always say, I can WIN any race I enter...as long as no one FASTER shows up; ) Well usually that never happens, in fact it has NEVER happened until TODAY!!: )

The second annual running of the Somersault Triathlons, Duathlon, Canoe Tri, Kayak Tri, Swim, Swim-Cycle, 10KM, 5KM, 2KM, etc. etc. etc. took place today in my home town of Sydenham, Ontario. Everyone in the village came out to support the event either by volunteering or participating. I almost ran The Wolfe Island 5km instead but am glad I decided to join in the fun and take home my first ever overall Gold medal in the Women's 5km and winning a running skirt and a nice tech shirt to boot. I must say it was fun to hear my name announced over the loud speaker as I crossed the finish line as first women and 3rd overall behind two 13 year old boys. Now I can tell everyone that I am almost as fit as a 13 yr old boy and really how much fitter can I get then that?

The race itself was a hard one for me. It was hot and I was tired and had a bad stitch at 2.5km.  I decided not to worry about it and took it as an opportunity to just try and hold it all together when the body just wanted to stop. I did not use my Garmin and ran the whole way "time blind" and loving it. All that mattered was that I kept pushing forward trying to catch that 13 yr. old kid in the red shirt. I never quite caught him but it was fun trying. Funny thing but I was so taken up in racing that when I crossed the finish line I really was not that interested in what my time was. Imagine that, sounds impossible even to me.

My time was 21:46, a new course record; )
Just a little video of the proceedings. Please note that the 5km and 10km were ran together.

Friday, July 2, 2010


I am not going to bore you with all the details of my 1 mile race. I'd like to cut to the part about my goal for the race which was to "TRY". I would also just like to make it clear that my goal was to "TRY" not to "DIE" or "DIE TRYING". Yes finishing a race so tired that you can't hold yourself up is certainly one for sure sign that you "TRIED" but unfortunately my race didn't play itself out quite that way. Defining how I tried my best may leave some of you asking yourself if I did indeed "TRY" hard enough but in my heart I know I did my best on that day with what experience and racing knowledge I had to work with.

In the days leading up to the race I had become almost paralyzed with fear of  failing so really getting to the start line was my first step in trying. Running the race based on my Garmin readings instead of my body's feedback was a choice I made because I did not trust that my body knew how to run this race. I let 2 readings from the Garmin rule this race for me. The first time was rounding the first bend and I noted I was out fast and I decided to base my next move on the number I saw and that move was to slow down. Rather then listen to my body's perceived effort I decided to ease off and cruise midway into the first lap of the 2 lap race. The next time I read my Garmin was at the halfway point, or should I say miss read it. I thought it said I was right on target(wrong) and what I did next based on that number was to hold steady where I was. I was working but I was not hurting but then again I still had another half of the race to go(1 more loop) so I saved my push for the last 400 metres and I ran it as strong as I could to the finish, not dying(probably because I did not push as hard in the middle) but trying and looked at the Garmin across the finish line and WHAAAAT??? The time was not what I expected. The feeling I had at that moment was that I had tried my best and that I had never quit. I had tried to outsmart the race and failed but I had not failed to "TRY". I was only disappointed in the time, not in myself. Infact I was quite ecstatic that I had just finished a race that had scared me so much just a few days before.

 In the end my mistake was trying to "THINK" the race instead of "FEEL" the race and that's OK, it was a learning experience and a lesson I never would have learned had I not "TRIED".

On a side note I looked at the video my Mom (Sherpa) Jane had taken of the race and I did not look as graceful or as smooth as I thought I would. To tell you the truth I was a bit embarrassed looking at myself. But I've had some time to think about it and I guess it really doesn't matter how I look to the rest of the world because I don't have to see myself when I run, I only have to feel how it feels and it feels great inside and that is all that should matter to me.