Ok Universe…I’m holding your subsidiary captive until you meet my demands.

 

I want a new body pillow. Preferably a Packers one.

I want to be able to run 7 miles a day, eat healthy, stop drinking, quit smoking, and lose some damn weight. I’ve already managed the first 4 things in that list on my own…help me the hell out with the weight loss…yea?

 

Lottery. Lots of it. That. Is. All.

 

New hips. Mine are already destroyed and I need new ones by the age of 30 anyway. Just do it in my sleep when no one is looking.

 

A tempur pedic mattress. Or a live in chiropractor. Doesn’t matter. Just pick one of them. ok.

 

A tattoo designed by Neil Gaiman. By midnight tonight.

 

A 2nd job that I actually make some money at.

 

A guitarist so that I can sing some gigs down in the village.

 

5 new bags.

 

3 more pairs of Brooks Cascadia 6’s.

 

To get ridiculously ridiculous with A-Rodge, preferably in a bar, with a mechanical bull, a bottle of vodka, spandex pants, and green bay packers fog horns.

 

A man that is actually a man…and not a raging coward.

 

A season pass for Spartan Race.

 

My own radio show.

 

A harlequin great dane.

 

An available cure for IC and every other Chronic Pelvic Pain condition.

 

A stick that I can use to beat every moronic asshole in the universe.

 

To be Doctor Who‘s companion for the rest of my life and to have an ood sing to me every night when I go to bed..

 

 

THAT

IS

ALL.

 

I trust you’ll start working on this immediately….

 

k. thanks. bye

 

 

 

Inner lady sparta has officially been reclaimed.

I can’t believe it’s over. That’s what Meghan and I have been walking around the house saying to each other since returning home from Staten Island on Saturday night. It’s over. Damn. Now what? It feels like we’ve been preparing for this race for years and although I know that we really only started training for it 4 months ago it’s become a very important and accepted part of my daily routine.

Eat this….it’s Spartan Training.

Don’t eat this…Spartan Training.

Dunk my head repeatedly in cold bath water…I AM SPARTA!

Run to work…Spartan Training.

 

Don’t dare take the elevator at work…yes, Spartan Training.

 

No holding on to the poles or rails on the subway….no pin balling off of other straphangers either…this is balance work..and Spartan Training.

Run around NYC with a pet rock …Spartan training (and bonding with nature)

It seems like every single thing we’ve done for the past 4 months we have counted as some form of training, whether physical or mental. I’m happy to say that no matter how ridiculous it all seemed it paid off in the end. All that crazy shit that we did or didn’t do in the name of training apparently was exactly what we needed to be able to do what we needed to do on the course. I don’t have a single regret. Except for the fact that it’s over. All I can really say about that is….meh.

If any of you read my “Reclaiming my Inner Lady Sparta” piece that I posted awhile back you understand just how important this was to me. I’m not going to reiterate and go into that here but I will say that accomplishing this somehow means to me that I really can do anything and that’s a mindset that has been misplaced in the Taliverse somewhere along the course of the past 5 years. If I could prepare myself for this race and follow through then I can apply that concept to anything else in my life…and I plan to. I also plan to apply that to alot more obstacle races/mud runs. I wanna be good…like really really good. I wanna win damnit. Give me a year and I’ll have enough under my belt to do so.

On another note, there were so many amazing things that went on during this race that I don’t even know where to start. Firstly, I want to thank my roommate and best friend for always sticking by me no matter what form of craziness I drag her into. The poor girl couldn’t even manage to run 5 paces without injuring herself or looking like an orc on crack before I got ahold of her and she ran across that finish line with me mostly in one piece.  I’m proud…..and there may be a tear or 2 involved (don’t tell her that). Secondly, chivalry was definitely not dead during this race. 99% of the other runners were generous, genuinely concerned about other people’s safety, and a shit ton of fun to run alongside during various parts of the course. Good job kids. Good job. That always leaves me with a warm and fuzzy feeling (which is much different than my usual rubbing alcohol tipped pins and needles feeling that people typically leave me with). I approve. Thirdly, it was an absolute blast. There is nothing better than rolling around in 8-12 inches of mud, swimming through 15 ft long drainage pipes, and getting all battered and bruised along the way. That is my type of extracurricular activity. I’m in love. For real. Last thing that really really made me proud to be a part of this race was the fact that all the money earned goes somewhere amazing. Most of it goes to various military related organizations such as Homes for the Troops and Help for Heroes which to me is the greatest thing ever. They fight for us…we need to fight for them as well. That’s the least we can do. Running 8-10 miles and doing obstacles by choice is nothing compared to what they endure overseas for us and for that I salute you. Aroo! ***Stands up and claps for the entire Spartan Race Organizational team before bowing and giving a silent Aroo…you guys truly are the freakin’ coolest. Thanks for the opportunity to help myself and to help others. Very cool. Very cool indeed.

My initial goal for myself when I signed up to do this race was to finish it. For once I took my competitive side out of it and decided not to push myself too far too quickly. Afterall an IC bladder who has been in fat ass mode for the past 8 years may not tolerate this form of torture too well and I didn’t want to push it…well not to the point of no return anyway. I would like to think that after all these years dealing with IC that I know my body well enough to know what it can and can’t recover from. Also, how to fix it when it does decide to be an asshat. Luckily I was still able to run the race at a semi competitive pace (I promised Meg I would never leave her in the dust on this one) and still preserve my bladder. It worked out quite nicely. We finished in 2:42 which is pretty good for someone who hasn’t competitively ran in 8 years and someone who couldn’t have ran a mile 4 months ago if someone paid her. I’ll take it.

It was a success…and something that I plan to do as often as I possibly can until the day that my legs stop working, which is hopefully years and years and years from now.  The promise that I will make to you guys is that every year for the entire month of IC awareness month (whenever that may be if we decide to change it again) we will run in our blue and write IC facts all over our bodies. My races will always be IC motivated. I will always wear my teal IC wristbands and will always talk about it. Will my hair always be blue…no. I’m over it already because I look like a smurf every day at work with my blue scrubs lol. But as long as I have the ability to rock the blue…I will. I’m running for IC and I’m running for me. It just so happens to work both ways.   Hmm…maybe I’ll have to work on my own IC oriented race. And the wheels have officially started turning.

 

So the moral of the story is simple. Set your mind to something and you can do it. It may not be easy. It may not be pain free. But by damn it’ll be fuckin gratifying at the end of it all and then crawling to the bathroom 500 times will seem worth it. I know it was to me. I’m a new person after this race. Not only did it big my ego up a bit (not sure I needed it to be bigged up at all lol) but it also gave me a reason to stay healthy and really get in touch with my body and mother nature. I think people forget how close those 2 things are in the grand scheme of things. I also would love to go pro as an obstacle racer. Who knows..maybe it’s a career change. lol Or maybe I’ll just settle for making it across the finish line at a really good speed for forever. Just sayin’

 

 

If you’re interested in doing these sorts of things check out ImAthlete and Spartan Race websites.

 

We are also running another one this weekend in the Bronx that’s sponsored by Merrell and are already lining up races for next year. Now…if only I could get my hands on a Spartan Race season pass for 2012 I would be as happy as a 5th ave. hooker on pay day. C’mon universe. Help me out on this will ya?

 

 

Here are some stills from the race….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lady Sparta pre-Super Spartan race ramblings.

Saturday September 24th 2011 was one of the most gratifying days of my life. After months of endurance training, mental coercion, and bladder preparation I finally stood at the Spartan Race claimed park grounds waiting anxiously for my heat to start. Meghan (my roommate) and I sported all the necessary tones of teal for an IC awareness geared run and told anyone who asked about our blue hair and clothing just why we chose that color. For those of you who know me you’re well aware that I document everything in excess and also that I love to ramble on about whatever I’m doing at the time because I convince myself that someone, somewhere, actually gives a shit about what I have to say. I don’t know if this is the case but running my life based on my own convincing nature seems to work for me.

So…now that we’re all totally clear on all of that. This video was recorded a few hours before our scheduled heat. Just an explanation about why I had to do this so that at the end of the day I could happily claim myself as Spartan Tough. I could also reclaim my inner lady Sparta as well. Guess I finally got to eat the pie. Reference my “Reclaiming My Inner Lady Sparta” blog for the further pie explanation.

Reclaiming my inner lady sparta….

I have been missing a huge pie sized chunk  of my soul for a very long time. Like I’m crawling through a never lifting heavy fog that’s weighing on my chest and unless I can get that pie back in one piece and totally uneaten I’ll never get out…isn’t that a nice opening statement? Sucks you right in like “wow, this female is a totally sad excuse for a decent train wreck” right from the jump. Excellent! That was the goal. So,now that I’ve gotten your attention, let me elaborate a bit.

I was an extremely athletic person my entire childhood, all the way up through my teens, and into my medical health downfall stage of my early 20’s. Nothing was too much for me. I was a heavily competitive gymnast from the time I was 3 until I was 14; a horseback rider since I was able to hold myself up; a diver for my high school swim team (yes people, I may be broken and out of shape but, I can still do a mean double twisting one and a half) ; a decent mountain biker and finally a runner, both competitively and well…in all honesty, what else is there  in life but competition? You’re either competing against another human or you’re competing with yourself. Either way, you have to step up to the challenge to do better or at least do as well as you did the time before. There is nothing more gratifying in the world than that.

At least to me there isn’t.

There used to be 2 things in the world that could bring me out a funk. Singing and running. If it was a really bad day I’d do both simultaneously.It may seem weird but let me assure you that running the streets of NYC and singing at the top of your lungs doesn’t get you that many weird looks around this massive city, contrary to popular belief, and to top it off it’s great for building lung capacity. I’m just sayin’. Anyway, doing those 2 things on a daily basis kept me grounded, made me smile and ultimately made my ass look amazing. Ok, Ok, i’m sure the singing had nothing to do with my ass, but the running definitely played a part.

It seems I’m deviating away from the point. Apologies.

Anyway, in my early 20’s I had no choice but to stop running, completely, due to being diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis, Vulvodynia, and Pelvic Floor Dysfunction (all incurable,chronic pelvic pain conditions) which are all super aggravated by just being alive, let alone any type of physical activity. At first not being able to run every day seemed like something I could live with. It was either continue with the rapid leg movement and foot/pavement battles or aggravate all my my medical conditions and end up not being able to walk or function for 3-7 days after a short 2-3 mile run…which totally blows. I chose the first option and continued to struggle with my medical conditions, weight, and most of all a clear mind. In all honesty it took a few yrs for it to really catch up and start affecting the competitive side of me but, at the time, not running was the best thing I could’ve done for my body. Probably not running for 3-5 years was still in my body’s best interest and probably starting to run again a year ago probably wouldn’t have been the best idea either. So I didn’t. It had been almost 7 years since I had to give up that pie and quite frankly I felt it was time I was allowed to eat the damn thing, bite by bite, and in peace (with no napkins to wipe my face when I was finished) Hah! Take that clean, dainty, fancy-esque people!

As many of you are well aware I was filmed for MTV True Life for an episode called “I can’t Have Sex” (yes you can watch it here if you wish..just click)” which focused on the Pelvic Floor Dysfunction and Vulvodynia aspect of my day to day life and intimate relationships. A massive part about my section of the show was about how I started to attend internal and external physical therapy to learn how to help manage the pain, re-teach my pelvic floor muscles how to act properly, and how to understand that much of our own personal xi and vibrational energy plays a part in healing. I started my therapy almost a year ago and although I am no longer in excruciating pain every day of my life, I still  spend hours a week reteaching these muscles how to function like a normal 25 year old’s muscles should just so I can continue to act like a normal 25 yr old should…err something. Now, keep in mind that I do, in fact,  spend even more time destroying those rebellious muscles because I refuse to continue to let these conditions hold me back any longer. So, am I cured? Hell no…no such thing exists just yet but my pain is managed and my pelvic muscles are kept on a very tight leash which I just so happen to have conveniently handcuffed to my wrist at all times to help keep them in check. With all of that being said, I decided it was time to once again consider myself a runner.

In order to do such a thing …you must run.

I started slowly about a month ago..and when I say slowly I mean it .Usually that whole slow thing isn’t an option for me but I dragged Meg Dollar, my wonderful best friend and roommate with me for the adventure. She was never a runner in her life and when she tried to run…even slowly… it looked like something out of the Goonies. Jaw dropped, foaming at the mouth, and a gate like Sloth. Truly, Sloth’s droopy eye could’ve run a better mile. No lie. I figured it would be good practice for her and also a great way to keep me at a decent pace until I got reacquainted with my legs. Mission accomplished! We worked our way around Central, Riverside, and St. Nicholas parks in increments.   Run for 2 minutes….walk for 30 sec and so on. We are now up to jogging a steady 3-5 miles a day and have stopped putting limitations on the terrain. Genius, I tell you. Genius. Around the same time that we started this leg/jog/one foot in front of the other in a quick fashion extravaganza another close friend imparted upon me the wisdom that is The Spartan Race . Dun dun dun……!  It was a match made in heaven and after watching their 10 minute video we mentally opted in. I’m happy to say that last night we officially opted in when we officially registered for the official extra day that they added on September 25th @ Wolf’s Pond Park in Staten Island.  Officially, I am going to be running an 8+ mile, 15+ obstacle race and officially I not only plan to make it though it alive, but with a hell of a good time for someone who hasn’t been able to run in years thanks to a stupid medical handicap. It’s officially, official and even my pelvic floor muscles, bladder, and broken everything else in my body say GAME ON!

It’s going to be a lot of hard work and I’m totally up to the task seeing as though I am Lady Sparta (Don’t judge me). One thing I have always had in my life is believing in mind over matter and shit tons of discipline (thanks gymnastics). I will do this..and after I conquer this Super Spartan Race..I will conquer the next one..and after that one…I will level up and do the Beast…and after that I will do the Death Race. And then I will probably die…

The moral of this story is that in the end no one has control over my body but me. I’ve let these medical conditions wear me down for far too long and this time…I plan on running closer to every challenge and further away from every cop out.  I am one step closer to reclaiming my inner Lady Sparta and stuffing my face with that pie.

Thanks to all who have stood by me through the rekindling of an old favorite adventure of mine and thanks to all those who are helping me to make new adventures….Spartan race people…yes I am, in fact, talking about you. Thanks for adding that extra day…..my soul stopped crying and chugging the metaphorical handle of vodka due to complete and total elation.

Kids if you’re interested in participating in the race check out all the links and also follow them  on twitter @spartan_race for updates and offers.   Oh yea, click like on Facebook as well.

oh yea…and hey, hey, yes, you. Follow me on twitter as well…i’ll be updating incessantly about the entire experience.   @talithaketeri.  Oh hell, follow my teammate Meg dollar too…@dancerdollar.

If you don’t have me on facebook yet. Do so!

 

 

 

I AM LADY SPARTAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA