Friday, February 19, 2016

She Believed She Could

February 19, 2016

A few years ago my Mom gave me this awesome flip book Its called “She Believed She Could” and its filled with little reminders to dream big, laugh loud and never stop believing in yourself. I have, through the years flipped day after day, through the pages. Sometimes I forget and it gets stuck in one spot for a while… and sometimes I flip the page and smile.

My Mom is amazing. You have no idea. I could not possibly have made it this far in my life without a strong, compassionate, independent, loving, caring woman as a role model. She went from living 45 miles from me… to 842 miles away from me a few months ago, but I’ll tell you, she is no further away from me mentally than ever. The last few weeks have been rough on me. February often is. Its cold, its dark when I go to work and dark I  get home, everyone seems to be sick or sniffling and my hands are dry and cracked from washing 50,000 times a day. Humidifiers are running at the house, the electric bill is high from our insane electric heat, it is impossible to open windows and exchange air… its really quite depressing.

I am one of my own biggest enemies. I know this. Once I start to get into the negative space in my head, things start to spiral out of control and the next thing I know, I am upset because I dropped a Tupperware when I am putting it away from the dishwasher… or I missed the trash when I toss something across the room into it. I then start to analyze everything and suddenly the things that sit in the back of my mind start to come forward. Suddenly, I am upset again that the market still sucks and we cant sell our condo, I am upset that Z is in daycare for a too long every week, I am upset I don’t have a muscle up, I am upset that Hubs works on Saturdays and we don’t have that time together, I am upset that we live month to month with our paychecks and are only slowly chipping away at the balance on our credit. All of these things that I/we are working on changing… they feel like they need to change right now or I am going to lose my mind. I get all worked up… and honestly, if you know me, you know when I get worked up… its bad news.  

Then it happens… I talk to my Mom.  She helps me to turn these mundane temporary things into exactly what they are… temporary. She reminds me that I am doing all I can to be the best Mama to my little man that I can be… regardless of having to send him to daycare 4 days a week for 10 hour days. He is very loved, he is squeezed and kissed and played with and very aware that I will be there for him for the rest of my life.  She reminds me that I have worked really hard for my job and that even on the most frustrating days, I need to remember how I got where I am, what I have been through to get here and be confident in myself. Hold my head high. She reminds me that we are not going to be in our condo forever, in time, we will get out. We will get to where we want to be. Wherever that ends up being. She reminds me that I am ME… that I don’t give up… that I work hard, I am confident, I am strong and as she likes to say “this too shall pass.”

Today I flipped the book, this is what it says:

“Its often the bend in the road that makes life worth the drive.”

Life is not easy. Life is crazy, full of ups, downs, lefts and rights. There will always be happy times, sad times and everything in between. That is what is so exciting. It is all a matter of how you deal with or look at each situation. I talk about being confident. I talk about strength in positive thinking. I talk about mind over matter and changing things that you can change to make your life what you want it to be. Sometimes, I need to be reminded of how to do these things. It could be a story I read on the web, it could be from re-reading my own blog, my very own words, it could be from a little flip book that was given to me years ago… it could be just a simple talk with my Mom.

Sit back and take a look at your life if you are unhappy with something. Really look at it. Then think of all the amazing things you have versus all the things you don’t have or want. I know when I look at my own life, even though there have been lots of “bends” in the road (and sometimes traffic jams, speed traps and fender benders)… it is 150% “worth the drive.”  

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Hello Thursday

February 4, 2016

Wow... to start of this post I typed 2014, backspaced the 4 and put 5 than backspaced the 5 and put 6. Apparently, I think its 2014 again today. Funny that that happened actually. Until I just typed that I didn't realize the irony to what I am about to write.

Today is Thursday. What is Thursday?  Well, Thursday is rest day. At least it was for me, for the last 3 (or so) years. I would be at the 5:30 am class Mon, Tues, Wed, take Thurs off and be back at it Fri and Sat (Sun was also a rest day). Through the Open and during Regional training in both 2013 and 2014. I would go in and do some active recovery or a light workout that was prescribed for the day, but overall I have stuck to a pretty regular schedule.

So, whats changed? I stuck with my 5 day a week training through my whole pregnancy. I knew following Z's birth that it was going to be close to, if not completely impossible, for me to get to the gym on Saturdays. The truth is... I love my Saturday mornings with him. I dont want to go to the gym. I cherish that time, is is moving so fast. Now that he is a little older we can go for walks/runs, take swimming lessons, play all sorts of games and "try" to make sure good nap gets in there somewhere! My Saturday mornings are now filled with the slamming of a sippy cup off the side of the high chair and cleaning syrup from waffles or chocolate from chocolate chip pancakes off his face, rather than the slamming of weights and washing the chalk off of my raw callouses. You know what... thats ok. I wouldnt change it for the world.

I did however feel like I needed to make a change at the gym. I am fortunate enough that Hubs takes care of the AM duties (in more ways than one) and gets Z to daycare. I have able to keep with my 5:30am class. Yes, this requires me to drag myself to class after no or very little sleep sometimes... but that is my choice and it works for me. It gives me that very well needed "ME" time that everyone needs to have a daily dose of.  

My mom use to come to my house and watch Z on Thursdays. They were so sacred to me at the start of his little life. I looked forward to every Thursday, sleeping in a bit and waking up with him in my bed (yes, I co-slept, dont judge) cuddled with me. I would bring him downstairs and nurse him, get some play time in and lots of giggles and smiles until my mom arrived and it was time for me to get ready and leave for work. I took pictures documenting each week... he was born on a Thursday (rest day ironically) and it was fun to have that special milestone each week with him. I also loved that for 10 months of his life he only had to go to daycare for 3 days a week with an added bonus that he had lots and lots of QT with Grammy!

Things have changed a bit. My parents fulfilled their dream of moving to NC. We knew it was coming, albeit it happened very quickly when the process started. Non the less, I do not have any at home care for Z on Thursday anymore. Hubs and I took turns for the month of December staying home with him and as of the first week of January, he is in daycare for 4 days. He loves it there, we are very happy with his development and care, so thats a huge positive. However, it was a change we had to get use to.

What was I ever going to do with my Thursdays now. Thursdays, since the start of the year have become just another day. I decided to pick up the day at the gym and get back to 5 days a week. I get up at 4:25... get my things together, creep into Z's room, (unless he is practicing his "wake up at 4:00" routine and is already awake) give him a kiss, tell him I love him and I will see him that night... and make my way out the door to the gym.

So, whats the big deal? Well... Thursdays, oh Thursdays... its "conditioning day" at the gym. Usually a metcon in the 20-30 minute range with very little weight and lots and lots of cardio. Hmmm.... my "favorite." Any time I had a work/schedule conflict and had to miss a day prior to Z being born, I would attend Thursday, I knew it kicked my ass. Thats exactly what it has been doing since the start of the year... Kicking my ass! Workouts straight out of my "goat" book... and far from my comfort zone with nothing "heavy" to help ease the pain. Yuck.

Today is Thursday. This is the 5th week of my 5 day a week schedule. Yep, Im tired. Yep, Im sore. But honestly, its starting to feel good. I have been working really hard and guess what? Its starting to pay off. The struggle I had every Thursday, trying to keep up in that class is beginning to be less of a struggle and starting to be more fun. The dread that I felt when I saw the long cardio/no weight workout is no longer dread it is now at the "challenge" point where I want to do more and push harder and get better/faster. I dont find myself saying "well, its a conditioning workout, I dont do so well with those" anymore. I am now thinking "I am going to get this one, I can do this!"

It feels good to have that feeling again. It feels good to push out of my comfort zone and get better at something I have struggled with for a long time. Crap... I actually "like" Thursdays.

It takes a lot to get out of your comfort zone. It takes a lot to admit that you even have a comfort zone sometimes. In the last year weights have become competitive with most of the ladies in the gym and my metcons are in the same general area as well. My "thing" use to be heavy weights, but I dont really have a "thing" anymore... I do still love lifting and feel most comfortable with a bar in my hands, but I dont have the opportunity to move heavy weight anymore while working on my form and my numbers have suffered from that. I would say that my comfort zone is still weights, but lately standing on the outside of that bubble and working hard has proven to help make some advancements in areas that have been needing work for a long time.

I have had to make a lot of changes in my life, in the gym and out of the gym, over the last year... I am going back to my old posts and reading my own words. I am embracing the suck, I am challenging myself, I am being confident and motivated and most of all... I am loving my life. There is lots of "magic" happening...

Step out of your comfort zone. Accept challenge and change. Own it. You will be happy you did.