Real Life

I still don’t feel like this is real life.

box

 

With the weather being AMAZING lately I find myself feeling luckier and more grateful than ever.

I have been getting to spend time with the best little girl, and apparently future rower.

babyrow

 

I have been helping athletes at the gym start to change their lives too.  seriously.  I have an athlete that just texted me this morning and told me she lost 10 inches in 10 days.  I am so SO proud of how hard some people have been working.  Not only in the gym but also in cleaning up their eating and taking care of themselves in general. I feel so inspired every day to see people who just a month ago started thinking they couldn’t lift any weights or do half the stuff I ask of them,  and then out of no where they are dead lifting 200 pounds and working their butts off and feeling great about what they are doing.  seriously. is this real life?

 

Saturdays have also become my favorite day of the week. I get to coach usually a REALLY fun WOD then I get to beat myself up with some awesome friends.

everyonegym

 

 

As for Sundays, they are still my day to relax and enjoy some time at home.  But to be honest….I don’t mind my home away from home 🙂

 

gm

 

ps- Today is May 5th.  a day I will never ever everrrrr forget.  and go wish her a happy anniversary!

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Comparison

Having a blog is weird.  Reading blogs is weird.  All of it, the whole community.  I think for the most part I am pretty honest and open.  I talk about my highs and my lows.  I wrote about failing to meet a goal at Steamtown last year, I wrote about having bad days and days when I ate too much but I also wrote about the good, like qualifying for Boston or having an awesome workout.

In general I love my life, I feel really happy most of the time, I am healthy, I have great friends, family and boyfriend.. I really feel super blessed.  But…there are those days and even those people, as horrible as it sounds, that make me feel like I don’t have it all or all together.

You know those days, when your nails are too short with your ugly, chipped nail polish.  Or your handwriting is so bad you vow to never hand write a note again?  What about when it feels like the only pants you could possibly ever fit your love-handles in are stretchy pants? But.  There is that one person who has the perfect life, has the perfect hair, nails, body AND handwriting.

It can be hard to not get wrapped up comparing yourself to others.  especially in the blog world when we, as bloggers, have the freedom to pick and choose what we want to share.

comparison

I know there are a few blogs that I read that make me feel like I should focus less of my efforts on CrossFit and a ton more running lately.  Or the blogs that make me feel like a complete loser for not being able to make the perfect souffle let alone know what a souffle even is.  But really.  It’s not those blogs faults.  It’s my own.

I sometimes have to take a step back and remember I am me. I am good enough.

Just as you are you and YOU are good enough.

beyou

I will never not have half chewed fingers.  Or really pretty handwriting.  And I can pretty much guarantee that, considering my past cooking experience, I will probably never know what a souffle is or how to make one.

And with all that….all that said. I am ok with it.

fruitloop

I think it’s totally ok and normal to have those moments where you feel inadequate. After all, aren’t we human.

But….if you don’t let those fears and inadequacies consume you, I promise I won’t either.  I might try to work on my cursive a little more but I won’t stop myself from lifting heavy weights because I want to run.  I know that right now, at this point in my life, lifting heavy is what works for me.  Last year, running a lot worked for me.

I know that right now in my life, my friends famous “chicken surprise” dish will probably be a staple in my house for all of ever.

I know this is probably a weird post.  But I had a weird day and struggled with some stuff.  Hopefully getting this out there will help me wake up tomorrow with a clean slate and a fresh attitude 🙂

gm

Hero WOD

If you live in the Northeast you know its been cold.  Really cold.  Almost unbearable cold.  And while I get it, it’s cold and it sucks having to bundle up so much….I think everyone should just stop for a minute and try to appreciate how even though its bitter cold, it can still be really pretty.

frozen trees

seen on my drive to work

Yesterday I braved the cold and headed to the gym early.  I was meeting a few friends to do a quick WOD before the class at 9.  We decided on Karen – 150 wallball shots as fast as you can.  Basically you thrown a weighted ball (I used 14#) to a 9 foot target all the while making sure you squat with the ball every time.  It took me about 10 minutes and it wasn’t pretty.  Wall balls are my least favorite thing so I am glad I finally did that WOD since I had been ignoring it.

At 9 the WOD at the gym was scheduled.  It wasn’t any old WOD though.  Yesterday meant something…

In CrossFit there are hero WODs that are made in memory or to honor fallen or injured military or law enforcement. The great thing about this is that a hero WOD can be written for anyone that you wish to recognize.

A fellow gym member as well as great friend of the gym owner suddenly passed away a couple of weeks ago while he was doing what he loved…working out.  In order to honor the great man who lost his life too soon, a hero WOD was created for him.

Each number represents something significant in his life… children, years married, years as a marine.  The exercises chosen were even significant in this mans life.

herowod

This was tough.  But every time it seemed like every time someone got tired or had a weak moment where they didn’t think they could go anymore they realized this WOD meant something…it was more than just a workout but it was a way to honor someone.  Everyone- including myself- had to dig deep and really push for it.  And that’s the point of a hero WOD.  It shouldn’t be easy. They should make you work harder and dig deeper than normal.

Everyone did an amazing job and I couldn’t be more proud to be associated with not only a great group of people but also a great gym.

ddwod

“Captain X-Static”

gm

Puppies, a Ramble and a Princess

Great Morning to you! 🙂

How was your weekend!? Awesome I hope!

Pretty much all of my Saturday was dedicated to this guy

Meet Vice!

Saturday J and I drove about 2 hours to pick up our newest member of the family!  Once we had this little furball home we headed straight to the park..aka neutral grounds, to introduce him to Jake.  How did it go?

Jake hates him and wants to send him back.  I have faith that after a few long and really annoying days things will get better.  Lola doesn’t mind him though so we are 1 for 2.  Oh, and I pretty much love the shit out of him so he stays.  I win.

Sunday morning I was up bright and early. I had a LR + Race combo.  I needed to run 45 minutes prior to competing in a local 10K.  I drove about an hour to where the 10K was and met up with my SIL and dad to get the 45 minute run over with.

That picture is stolen from sHm but I love it!  I also LOVE when they bike with me while I run.  It makes the time go so fast.  Thanks guys 🙂

After I finished a little over 5 miles it was time to line up at the start of the River Ramble 5K and 10K.  I was definitely nervous starting this race because I wanted to race it.  I mean, last 10K I did was on gravel, in the rain and I didn’t love it.  I wanted to try to beat my time of 47:35….

I ran my face off.  I definitely pushed it but it was worth it!

I ended up coming in 4th female and 2nd in my age group.  I also cut 1:10 off my time and on a hilly course AND after I already ran 5 miles.  I will take it 🙂

I never really race races so it’s exciting for me to see what I can do and how I compare to others.

HUGE HUGE HUGE shoutout to my girl B who ran her first 10K, longest run ever AND kicked HUGE ASS doing so.  What an awesomely awesome day for her yesterday! So pumped for her!

clearly it was sunny

After the race I headed for breakfast with my 3 favorite girls!  Bacon, egg and cheese on bagels please!

I also had the pleasure of dining with the fabulous princess Ryann.

As for the rest of my Sunday, there was enough excitement in the first 5 hours to last me a week so I got home and died on the couch. I was so tired…and still am!  BUT, it was most certainly worth it!

Tell me, did you kick ass this weekend like B?  How about bring home a new furry family member?  Or dine with a real life Princess?

gm

Hot Dog Days

Growing up I was never the kid that said “Man, I wish I had a sister.”

I had a brother and that seemed good enough.  We played together, fought each other and neither of us really felt like we needed another sibling.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I love my brother.  He is one of the best guys I know and would probably do anything for me.  I have been in plenty of tough situations where he has come and saved the day. BUT…. sometimes I think one major reason I love him as much as I do is because he gave me the sister I never knew I wanted.

Today is Sam’s birthday!!!! She has been a Hot Dog for an ENTIRE year now!

who knew that her HotDog days would bring out her love for them too!

She is my best friend. But is also so much more than that.  She is a great friend, mother, comedian, cook, cheerleader, motivator and so much more.

I think it’s safe to say that EVERYONE in my family would be lost without her. We are all blessed to have her in our lives and to call her family.  I know for sure that NO ONE else would be able to hang like she does.  And for that, I am forever grateful.

Ready for the gayness….here is comes…. I think a soul mate can be so much more than in a romantic way. I think that for me, Slull is my soul mate.  The things that seem the silliest are some of my best memories…

  • CVS parking lot
  • Mariah Carey sing off on the way home from Rockaway
  • Trying to volunteer and interrupting a funeral
  • Friday nights of rice crispy treats, Americas Next Top Model and Wine coolers
  • The Italian Stallion
  • That ride home from the ballet…in the snow…you know….
  • Tie dying and the “fall off the couch” incident 😉

I for one, am glad that 25 years ago this old lady girl was born!

Love you Slull!

GO TELL HER HAPPY BIRTHDAY! 

gm

Cheering is no joke

Since I wasn’t able to participate in the race I decided to wake up early and get my run over with so I can focus on my friends and family racing.

The only time I was able to run would be before the sun comes up.  That left me with the treadmill.  Safety First.

I ran a 10 minute warm up and 50 minutes at 8:00 pace.  I made the incline at 1.5% to try to make it as similar to being outside as possible.  Let me tell you…the entire time I was running I was so glad I wasn’t racing later in the morning. It was a shitty shitty run.  I mean, I did it but it sucked.

I sweat more than normal, my breathing was super labored, I couldn’t find a rhythm.  It sucked.  But, whatever, it was over and I could focus on the task at hand….CHEERING!

We got to the start nice and early and met up with two friends that were also running.  Unlucky for me, I didn’t get to catch any photos of my old roomie and this was her first half!  She kicked ASS but I am pretty bummed I have no photo evidence.

Once the runners started I got to hang out with these guys to cheer our faces off!

Let me tell you…. Cheering is no joke.   The way the course was set up, mile 12 and the finish were close to each other so I bounced back and forth trying to cheer people on with a mile left and scream them into the finish.

I am so proud of everyone that ran today!  Although I didn’t get to run with them I tried my best to let them know that I was pumped for them and I wanted to pay back all the cheering and support they give me all the time!

One thing I did learn this weekend?  Cheering is NO joke. I am so tired.  I mean, I may or may not have complained about how tired I was.  Ha. I didn’t even just bust my ass and run a race, I was a cheerleader.  Let me tell you, I have a much better appreciation for the screaming, cowbell shaking supporters!

Congrats to everyone that raced this weekend!!  You’re all super kick-ass.

gm

Time, pace, goals. Enough is enough

Not that long ago someone asked me why I run.  Simple enough, right?

no.  I had a hard time answering that.  If you would have asked me 6 months ago I think I could have answered with ease.   What’s the difference between 6 months ago and now? A whole hell of a lot.

Rewind to when I was training for a couple 1/2 marathons.  I made sure to long run once a week but I was religious about lifting (body pump) 3 times a week, yoga once a week and running any distance/time/pace 4 more days a week.  I had a schedule…but not really.  I went by how I felt.  Ironically enough I was running 40+ miles a week.  I was happy, I was fit and I was always sweaty.

If you asked me why I loved to run I would tell you simply “It makes me feel good.”  It still does, don’t get me wrong.  With taking this week easy one thing I noticed is I love to sweat.  The sweatier the better.  Other than sweating I love the sense of accomplishment, I love being outdoors, I love that runners high…All of it.  That’s the same 6 months ago as it is now but there is something different about my current love of running.

I am quickly approaching the point where I am getting nuts about running and not in a good way.  

My coach said something to me today that kind of knocked me off my feet.

“My point is that there’s a fine line between letting a goal motivate you to achieve great things (good), and a goal dominating you (bad).”

Goals, times, numbers, paces…. all of that is in the forefront of my brain rather that what is important, and how I love to run.

Every time I go out for a run I am crunching numbers, I am calculating and scheming and typically staring at the pace on my watch.  Sure, I am just coming off a pretty serious training cycle but is it possible to train hard and still not get wrapped up in the numbers of it all?  I am being completely, 100% dominated by what my goal is.

Next weekend is the Runners World Half Marathon in Bethlehem.  I signed up for this race when it first opened.  Weekend full of seminars held by amazing and experienced runners followed by a 13.1 that is organized by the greatest source of all things running?  I would be insane to pass this up.

Except, even just a couple days ago, when I think about this race I think…maybe I will shoot for a sub 1:40.  I mean, my PR isn’t too far off that, I am in shape and I have been training so why not.

What’s wrong with me?  Why does every race, every run have to become a carefully planned and calculated goal.  What happened to running for fun?   What happened to going out there and just enjoying the time on my feet, the time with nothing but the fresh air, open roads and myself?

I feel there is pressure on me.  Pressure to perform. Pressure to pull big numbers.  I feel like people hear how I typically talk about running alllll the time so they expect me to be this great athlete.  Well, in my head a great athlete wouldn’t be ok with a 1:58 half…I need to try hard, I need to not let anyone down and at least try for a PR.

No.  The pressure I feel all comes from me.  No one expects anything from me, except me.  And you know what, if they do then they can suck it.

I haven’t run since Sunday.  I am giving myself as much time as I can to let my legs recover from the beating they took so I can come back strong, fresh and uninjured.

I am going to run the half next weekend. I have a bunch of friends and family members running.  A couple of them will finish their first 1/2 marathon and I want to make sure it is as much of an amazing experience as my first 1/2 was.  I want it to be about them and their hard work and their huge accomplishment.  I want the pressure and focus off me. That pressure and focus is something that comes from me…but eliminating that is definitely easier said than done.

I am making myself a promise.  I am making the next week of running all about focusing on not focusing.  I want to run by feel. I want to run because I love it, even if I am running a slower than I would like pace… I am going to run just to run. Not to reach a goal or hit a target or a specific number.

And most importantly I am planning on running a race that isn’t about me.  All pressure off me.  Pressure from myself and even the imaginary pressure the imaginary people put on me.  This race and the next few weeks are about running for the fun of it and nothing more.

gm

**note: i am clearly not working out as hard as i have been and have too much time on my hands to sit and think and stew. along with too much free time I have the post-race crazies, which is a common thing.  Similar to the taper crazies but I also hear it is way worse when you miss a goal…  

** another note:  I am convinced the running/blogging community is the best one out there.  The advice and support I have gotten over the past week and past few days is amazing. Complete strangers….reaching out to me or returning emails…letting me open up to them and in return feeding me with crucial and much appreciated advice.  You know who you are, and I think you are the shit.  the end

Family and Friends

Even though I am not thrilled with the outcome of the race, I have to say I am the LUCKIEST person ever when it comes to having supportive family and friends.

After the race I had 3 bouquets of flowers and balloons waiting for me.  J orchestrated that everyone come back to our house after for a pizza/cupcake/lazy man perogie party.   A couple of friends and their kids, my family, J’s family… we all hung out after the race.  I tried hard to not be a party pooper but I was tired and disappointed.

drowning my sorrows in Nuun, cupcakes and beer

I felt so loved by all the support I had.  From the weeks of training to race day, I am seriously SO lucky.

On the course the girls not only got dressed up in awesome outfits but even had amazing signs for me.

next time, ok? i suck

J was seriously the best.  I couldn’t have done with without him.  I mean, homeboy even helped me take my sneakers off when I got home, and I am not the only one that noticed how great he is.

I am not even close to being over this race.  I am still Bitter and BQless   but I do have a grateful heart.

and I have a fire lit under my ass to kill that minute and thirty-five seconds next time…

gm

Success

A friend sent me this a while back.  I was just reminded of it again today.  It’s 6 minutes.  Just watch it

Inspirational

Putting on repeat until race day

T-12 days

“When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, Then you will be successful”

gm

Doing it right

and the Giants WIN!!!!

Yesterday was such an awesome day.  We did everything right.

Start with a lazy morning outside.  Cool temps and hot coffee

Meet up with pretty ladies for tailgating with wings and beers

Enjoy the game and all the perks of being at a stadium.  including footlongs

ha

and most of all have a ton of fun with awesome girls

Yesterday really made me realize fall is here.  I couldn’t be happier

Also- a Big Blue W doesn’t hurt either 😉

gm