Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fish Lesson 2: Choose Your Attitude

In August, I wrote about how much I have learned from the Fish Philosophy. I talked about one of the lessons: play. Obviously, that is the big fun one, but there are 3 other components that are also essential to the Fish Philosophy. I always find it amusing how they can slip into your life when needed.
Here is lesson 2:
Choose your attitude. Your attitude is your reaction to what life hands you, and only you can choose that reaction.
I had the great tempo on Saturday. But Sunday morning, I had to stop my long run at mile 6.5. The outside of my left knee had started to hurt, but by the time I got to 6.5, I knew I could not run any further. This is why I always carry my metro card! I took the train back. I was pretty upset about the whole thing - rarely do I ever have to cut a run short like that. The train ride felt really long, as did the walk home. I moped around the house for a few hours. What is this? What does it mean - what do I need to do now?
And then I found a little perspective. I don't have a marathon coming up - not for 5 months. I am probably due for some rest anyways, not just from running, but at this point in the semester, I am burning the candle at both ends.
So, after I sulked around, I realized I needed to choose a new attitude. I chose to be healthy and positive. Whatever this is, at least is an indication to take it easy. So, if this is the card I've been handed, what can I do?
  • I am taking a few days off from running. It is the downhill movement that really hurts, so I am just going to not run for a few days.
  • I am going to get on the ellipitical. Less impact, but I will still get the cardio benefits.
  • I will continue to lift weights - might shift the focus to upper body and abs and not put a ton of pressure on the knee.
  • I will ice.
  • I will be flexible about my 10k expectations for Thanksgiving. I am assuming a few days off will do the trick, but if not, I will be realistic!
  • I am going to get in the pool and swim.

The pool is definitely the best thing coming out of whatever this is. Until yesterday, I hadn't been in the pool since September 3rd. Thanks to my dad, Mark (triathlete bud), and Jenny (MCM partner and dear friend), I have fallen in love with swimming. I think it's great, and I have enjoyed all of the benefits of it. This semester, however, I just haven't been good about working swimming into my schedule. But now, I'm changing the game and making time for it! I was so happy to get in yesterday. I was able to stretch out my whole body, give my arms a great workout, and take pressure off of the knee. Plus, in following lesson 1 of the Fish Philosophy (play), 1000 yards was followed by handstands and flips. Fantastic and fun - the way exercise should be. I had a similar experience in the pool this morning, flips and all. Doing that alone isn't quite as fun (Jenny and I used to cannonballs and whatnot after our workouts in the summer), but was still a treat.

So, we will see what the next few days will bring. I will continue to follow the Fish Philosophy. And there will be more underwater fun for sure!


  1. This totally makes my day!! Katie loves the FISH philosophy as a management tool and introduced it to me. Very similar in many respects to my friend's attitude towards life. When I hit these moments I remember this mantra: "Stuff gets wet and it sucks, but it drys!" This comes from my (very rainy) summer in Alaska when I was living in a tent and there were times when I felt I was always wet and cold. A friend pointed out the obvious to me when I was complaining one evening. Sometimes I forget, but when I remember I do better and much more pleasant to be around! :)

  2. I love this (not the knee part) but the way you are being proactive. great stuff!