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Tag: just keep swimming

Just Keep Swimming

“If you’re not being chased by a lion, why would you run?”, a friend recently asked me. It’s a good question. Isn’t that why we developed bicycles, horse-drawn carriages, and cars? There is a special feeling to covering distance on your own foot power.

Last year I decided, along with a family member, to train for a 5K (3.1 miles for Imperial folk). Our first race was in the middle of a Florida summer. Think 90 degrees, with humidity so thick you had to swim through it. Seriously, it was so humid the air was dripping. In other words, about the worst conditions imaginable. Still, we finished. No world records, just an eye towards the next event, a Thanksgiving morning 5K along the beach. It was a wonderful run which we both completed with no trouble.

Our goal was Disney.

runDisney hosts events at both of their parks throughout the year. We rushed to register for the Princess Enchanted 10K at Epcot. Even registration was a challenge…imagine every runner hitting the same site at once, plus, our internet connection went down to add stress. Somehow, we signed up despite the obstacles. But wait…10K? That’s twice a 5K! Sure is. Just keep swimming.

Last weekend, our efforts went to the test. Gathering at the Epcot parking lot at 3:30 a.m., we joined over 10,000 runners in pursuit of our goal. As the fireworks launched, we ran! If the first race was crazy hot, this was crazy cold. At least moving warms you up!

runDisney says, “Every mile is magic.” It’s true. The experience cannot be explained, from the camaraderie, to the character photos along the route, to the before and after party, it was a magical morning. My family member set a new personal record, despite stopping for photos throughout the race.

So, goal accomplished. That’s it, we’re done improving, right? Wrong! Not a minute past the finish line, we agreed to return in November for the half marathon (13.1 miles). Just keep swimming.

It’s easy to get complacent when things are good. We could have stuck with 5K races. Even 10K. You could have stopped when you reached your initial lending goal. But you didn’t. You set new ones, and together, achieved those too!

Dory may be forgetful, but she knows what it takes to accomplish anything. Just keep swimming.

Image credit: http://wac.450f.edgecastcdn.net/80450F/thefw.com/files/2013/03/Just-Keep-Swimming.gif

A Dive Shop in Maine?

Are you a diligent reader of this blog? If so, then you may remember a few months back I made a visit to Virginia and DC. If not, that’s ok, welcome new visitor! Now, go read, “A Change in Perspective“, written during that trip. The reason was simple: My nephew is awesome, and he was celebrating his 1st birthday.

The scenario now is a bit different. I’m in a darkened hotel room (afternoon nap time) in Portland, Maine, with the same great family and a much larger (and now running) nephew. They are here for a scientific conference, and I’m here as, yes, babysitter. Sure, it’s a long flight (two, in fact), but what’s that for friends who are like family?

Part of the time has been spent walking around Portland. It’s really a beautiful town, with old buildings carrying a new vibrancy. The people exude youth, hip, and a social consciousness far beyond south Florida (we’re getting better!). Many restaurants feature vegetarian, vegan, and sustainable choices. And of course, there’s the seafood…lobster, clams, and fish of all kinds, well, more so the cold ones. Truthfully, only the cold ones. It’s freezing here.

Ok, ok, to the point.

Down by the water, there are fish markets, commercial operations, and…a local dive shop. As a Floridian, I would be considered a dive snob…warm waters, good visibility (clear water), calm seas, and easy access to the rest of the tropics. They have none of those qualities here, yet here they are, flourishing for over 30 years. How? Because there is always something special. Cold water sea life is very different from the tropics, though no less impressive. Corals and sponges grow more slowly, but to even greater sizes. Fish are more bulky and lumbering, yet come in shapes and colors I could never find in the Bahamas.

Just because the way you know is your favorite, or even the accepted ideal, realize there is always an alternative view. Sometimes, those can be just as impressive and expose you to concepts never before considered.

Of course, my thin blood means I wear 5 layers of wetsuits!

Full disclosure: I’m not diving on this trip, though I have done cooler water dives, with large amounts of insulation. A polar bear I am not. 

Set Yourself to Auto-Update

How often do we just get drawn in to one project after another, not having an opportunity to step back and say, “let’s see how this all fits together”?

When your phone or computer gets stuck doing the same thing, churning away with no results, first we restart, then we clamor for an update. In fact, that’s what most of the updates you install are intended to correct; bugs encountered during normal use.

What is a bug? Without going into the technical, it is simply a situation, reproducible or not, when the system does not perform as intended by the user (who is following proper instructions). Naturally, when we can narrow down exactly what causes it to happen, we can more easily work to fix it.

Doesn’t that sound familiar? Ever find yourself doing the same thing, over and over, and just not getting the results you intended?

You need an update.

Even if you don’t have the time, force yourself to stop what you’re doing and take a look at the results. Are they what you hoped? If not, why? What can you change to edge closer to your goals?

Your computer doesn’t think it can stop for an update when it’s stuck in a loop. Then the update gets installed, and things move so much more smoothly.

There’s an update available. Install now?

Image by geekinside.com

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