Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Putting it in the universe: Dream big

Running has given me many gifts. Too many to even count.

One of the great lessons I've learned though my running is the importance of putting your goals, thoughts, intentions, "out into the universe."


I know that some of you will eye roll. Go 'head. This shit works. I once was a naysayer myself but over and over I've been making dreams come true by putting them out into the universe.

When I first went on this journey I couldn't run for a minute. Despite a forty pound weight loss, I still weighed close to 200 pounds at the time and was woefully out of shape. However, through ignorance, inspiration or both - I put it in the universe: I was going to run a half marathon. I signed up for a race, told everyone, put it on Facebook...

And it was out there. No turning back. I was scared shitless. 

But then, the universe 'conspired' to help me get to that goal.

Through starting this blog, training plans, friends, support, etc - I reached my goal and beyond. I then did the same thing for another and another and a full marathon and more.

Once just an impossible thought, then a dream - these things became reality once I put them into the universe.

Now, as a film producer, runner, health enthusiast and story teller, I've been given a unique gift by the Gods - a perfect project - The Relay Race documentary that I told you about here.

Will people care? Will the financing come? Will we be able to pull it off?

I had this burning dream when it first started to take shape. To share our stories.

My fellow racers are all spectacular runners with incredibly motivational stories. Each of them put their own goals and dreams into the universe, heroically taking the chance on themselves to 'go for it' without concern of how long, how hard, how far their journeys would be. They didn't worry about failure but focused on success, health and living lives they were meant to live. We all still have good days and bad days, we all sometimes fall back into a bad habit or skip a workout but we have all fully made the lifestyle change and bumps in the road don't stop us for long.

Meet the ragnar racers:
before and after shots in order of their Relay legs… I'm #7 

They continue to inspire others all around them on a daily basis and they continue to put big dreams out there.

They've also all graciously agreed to document their lives in this way. It's a big ask. They'll be exposing some of the most difficult things they've faced in their lives. They'll share stories that are personal and they'll invite virtual strangers to run alongside them. They are fearless in this. Rik, our team captain said something poignant about taking part in this film and I think many of us share this sentiment:
"I am excited to be part of this project because I cannot possibly pay back all the people that helped me get to where I am now. Instead, I want to pay it forward and help inspire others." 
And that's what I hope this project will do.

Still, in putting the dream of this film 'out there' I held back, sat on the dream for a while. I knew that once it was in the universe there would be no turning back.

I am was am scared shitless.

Will people care? 

Well thanks VERY much to you good friends and others - it seems people do. Nearly 600 "likes" on our film's Facebook page in under 5 days and 250+ twitter followers! We've already received requests for interviews about the film and supportive comments from tons of people who believe this is going to be something worth seeing.  

Will the financing come? Somehow, someway. I believe. Worse comes to worse, I'll be doing a lot of Ebaying ;)

Will we be able to pull it off? Without. A. Doubt. Let's just put that out in the universe. 

It's a risk. But the other big thing I've learned through running is that I'd rather take the risk then let fear keep me from trying. I'd rather go for 13.1 and fall flat on my face at 13.0 then never have the courage to start. Failing is not failure, never trying is failure. 

I'd rather get a DNF rather than a DNS (did not start) any day of the week - and to get a DNF, you better be pulling me off the course because if I've got anything in me and a leg to hop on, I'm going to still try to get to that finish line. ;)

Dream big. I'm also finding out that one dream leads to another - if I never had the courage to run I would've never been led to the dreams of my life - running Ragnar and this project.

What are you putting out in the universe?
What's one of the biggest lessons you've learned thru running?


PS: I know, I know. The Biggest Loser finale was last night! Next post we'll discuss.


Jen Small said...

*standing, applauding LOUDLY*

I am a huge believer that NO DREAM is too big.
If you want it bad enough, you find a way.
I am living proof.
EVERY SINGLE DREAM---and then some---has come to fruition in the last 6-12 months.
How? Why?
Who knows but I am not afraid to chase it and try to do it.


BabyWeightMyFatAss said...


nicole said...

you are a winner, jen the runner!!!

AmyGray said...

One of the biggest lessons I've learned thru running is that attitude is EVERYTHING. The mind is sooo powerful, that if you believe you can run 26.2, you can. If you envision yourself crossing that finish line, you will.

Can't wait to see the film.

{lifeasa}RunningMom said...

You go girl!

Ally said...

I LOVE your blog. I love reading about people who have similar, if not on a larger or smaller scale, story to me. It has been about a year and 7 months and I am down 50 pounds and have finished 2 Half marathons and numerous 5k and 10ks. Running is now my passion and reading about others only encourages me. Thank you for sharing your story with me, Jennifer! Can't wait for the movie

Frickin' Fabulous at 40 said...

I was so scared to even agree to the run and I could have said no. But something in me wanted this really bad. It's nice to be able to say "I did THAT!" I am SO glad I said yes. You don't know how saddened I would have been to miss this experience of meeting you all, getting to know you, running with you and -BONUS- make a film about it all. It would have been like I was nearly 230 pounds again, watching life pass me by...

Jason said...

First things first. I got so frustrated with BL that I am ignoring the finale from last night and could care less. I got so pissed off with the show this year.

Now, onto you post. Good for you and you just inspired me. You will see my post on Facebook in a few minutes. Thank you again for all that you do.

Jen said...

Thank you for all the comments - I really appreciate them all. :D

John Hulsey said...

Dream big? Oh, sweet heavens, yes. This experience is one life-affirming moment after another, and I'm so grateful to be doing this with you and the other amazing team members.

Let's Ragnar!

Gigi said...

Documentary - I for one can't wait for it! I follow many of the runner's blogs so I feel like I know them already :) For financing there are websites for donations like chipin where people can help with as little as $1.00.

Putting it out there - This is exactly what I did, I used to start everything but never stuck to anything, but when i started running I would just sign up for local 5ks...1 a month in the beginning and now usually 2-3 per week. I walked at first but now I can run the whole thing, I am in no way fast but I do it and keep doing it. I put every single thing on FB and talk about it at work. From races to just going for a run after work. I also got a group of friends to do the races with me so with the accountability of FB and registering and meeting up with friends I stick to it! The bonus I never expected and love more than any other part is when people tell me how my I inspire them and how proud they are at what I have done in the past year. Who would have thought I would inspire people to get healthy?!?!?

Cathy Tucker said...

There is something magical happening, the inspiration this group is putting forth is taking on a life of it's own! Everything is falling into place, keep plugging away Jen!