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I know I keep jumping back and forth with this. And I know it’s silly and probably frustrating to some who can easily accomplish a half ironman (or who think I can). And maybe I can. But I hate that I wake up, excited for the day, excited for workouts, excited for my upcoming trip to St. Thomas, but then deep down, I’m anxious and weighed down by the looming June date. Most of all, I’m mad at myself – for not feeling differently about the race. For not being excited and jazzed about it. For telling everyone, and thinking if I weren’t to do it, how embarrassed and frustrated with myself I would feel. For not thinking about how if I had just signed up for a regular triathlon first, and trained for it and killed it I would be ecstatic. It doesn’t always have to be the extreme. For not taking some time to think about which one I signed up for either – a time when my entire mom’s side of the family, including my mother will be in Alaska. And where I’ll have to travel 6 hours away, when there’s one just a few months later (already full) that’s less than 2 hours away and I’ve done the triathlon there and know and love the course.

Would I regret not doing it? Yes. Maybe. I think I will. I would feel like a failure. I failed everyone I told I would do it. I had every opportunity to make this into what I wanted, and I didn’t. I didn’t put it what I wanted to get out. So would I feel better and happier every day for the next few months though if I didn’t do it? Yes. Would I be excited to participate in a regular triathlon around the same time frame? Yes, very much so. Because let’s be honest, I know I’d kill a regular tri at this point.

And so that’s where my mind is right now. Keep training. Participate in my duathlon this week. No matter what my training is not going to waste. If anything I’ll be signing up for a triathlon that I’ve had my eye on the last weekend in June, that’s right near the Husband’s family’s house.

I just hope that in the next few days I wake up one morning and just accept it – one way or another. Be honest with myself, be true to myself, and do what makes me happy. Even if that means disappointing others, and myself in a way.

I have a 3 day weekend ahead of me, woohoo! I just need to get through work and my lunch time flywheel class and then the weekend festivities begin. Dinner with a bunch of girlfriends tonight. Tomorrow a BBQ with friends and meeting the Husband’s best friend’s newborn for the first time. Picking up my bike and hopefully getting an outdoor ride or indoor trainer ride Sunday morning. Easter with the Husband’s family. And MARATHON MONDAY. I took it off this year and I plan on sitting with a group of friends outside the city, holding ridiculous signs and salty snacks for hours as I cheer on friends and strangers.

Can we talk about how much I love my Jeep Patriot? For over 10 years I drove (and loved) my little 2 door Honda Civic but after a brutal, snowy winter of getting stuck and constantly fearing what I called no wheel drive it was time for something new. On Tuesday, I needed to load my bike in to the jeep to go drop it off and without even having to fold my front passenger seat down (it folds completely flat) it fit with just the back seat down. It was such a relief.

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And I’m so damn happy that I finally dropped my bike off. A tune-up, a flat tire kit, clip-in pedals, an extra water bottle cage will all be good to go by Saturday morning. No more excuses about rides on my own bike. The fact that I can ride 18 mph without clip-ins makes me pretty excited to see what my results are with… almost so excited that it overcomes my fear of toppling over the first few rides.

I’m loving Fit Radio. Finally a few playlists of perfect workout songs that get me happily through my workouts. Work It Out by Britney Spears always seems to come on towards the end of my workouts when I need that final push.

I’m proud of myself. I got all my workouts in this week so far and after I completed each one, my confidence grew. Slightly different from mileage on the plan (some I went distance, some I went time) but so far, I’ve felt really good this week. I’m still not prioritizing swims and should, but I got an awesome brick workout in on Tuesday – 18 miles bike then 4 mile run and it felt EASY. I can’t believe I’m even saying that, but it really did. And my 5 mile run outside yesterday? Not bad at all! The hardest part was battling the wind, but otherwise I ended the run hardly feeling like I worked out!  (I wish I could have gone longer too, but I was in a time crunch for a marathon fundraiser).

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Speaking of the “run-raiser” it was so much fun. It was an event for a close friend and they had raffle items and I ended up winning a $50 day spa gift card!  The gift card is accepted at a salon just 2 blocks from my apartment, so I’m pretty sure I’ll be putting it to good use soon.

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I’m feeling super grateful the Husband and I get to spend so much quality time together on the weekends. Sure we don’t see each other much on the weekdays now, but it’s so exciting and fun to spend hours straight with him on weekend days. He’s awake around the same time I am now that his work hours are more normal. It’s like falling in love with him over again now that we get to really hang out, talk (with passion) about our jobs, take adventures, run errands together, and just be awake and outdoors from morning-to-night.

I can’t end this what I’m thankful for post without saying that I’m thankful for everyone who reads this blog and comments. Seriously, I don’t mean to sound cheesy but the comments on my last post were exactly what I needed to hear. It’s crazy to think that over four years ago I started this thing as a “journal” and somehow have developed these connections (I don’t even know the right word, it’s something special though) with other bloggers. There are things I post here that I just don’t share as openly with others and that makes this little place of mine pretty damn special to me. So thank you.

One of the many reasons why outdoor runs are the best.

One of the many reasons why outdoor runs are the best.

10 weeks out

I was bordering on panic mode around my half-ironman this morning. To the point I looked into postponing to a later race (not possible). I haven’t been consistent with my training and I don’t feel ready.

Let’s be honest though, I don’t think I’ll ever feel ready.

But I have 10 weeks. Some crazies train for half-ironmans in 10 weeks alone. I have a base, even if my mind is telling me I don’t. I can swim 1.2 miles now. I can bike 40 miles at a 17mph pace without feeling tired. I need to do a few more long bike bricks. Running, well, I can jog/walk at a 5.0 mile pace the whole damn time if needed. Anyway, I know exactly what to do to make myself feel prepared and more positive. And seriously, I’m not just saying this, I will be thrilled, tears of happiness thrilled, prouder than hell of myself, if I can finish this race without getting cut off.

I started to list out what I need to get done in order to feel less panicked:

-Commit to prioritizing my training for the next 10 weeks.

-Celebrate each training week and build up my confidence.

-Get my bike work done. (Tune-up, clip in pedals, a flat tire kit, and an extra water bottle cage.)

-Get a few outdoor rides in.

-Participate in the duathlon I signed up for at the end of April (3 mile run, 11 mile bike, 2 mile run) – the perfect opportunity to get a little more used to my shoes and get the race feeling back.

-Watch a few training videos. (What to pack for the race, changing a flat, and other nutrition tips.)

-Practice with nutrition.

-Practice race outfits.

-Practice transitions.

-Book my race hotel room, Friday –Sunday.

 

Here’s my training that I want to accomplish this week. I will stick to my plan, these workouts are my top priority, and I know I have no reason not to be able to. I can do this. 

Week10

Weekend recap

Our plan Friday night was to go home and veg and that didn’t quite happen. As I walked to the train I ran into the Husband’s best friend’s wife who mentioned she and her husband (who also happen to live a few miles from us) were around that night and wondering if we wanted to do dinner. We ended up going to this delicious small Italian restaurant near our homes that is BYOB. 4 hours, a ton of pasta, 3 bottles of wine, and frozen yogurt filled with toppings by a tipsy person (me), we were back at home. It was a super fun night, full of giggle fits. It felt like for the first time in weeks that I was really letting go. I swear the New England winter this year really got me down, and that all just seemed to disappear on Friday night.

Saturday morning I headed over to my friend’s new condo for brunch with a few girls from college. One, who now lives in New York, is 5 months pregnant so it was fun to see her and ask her all sorts of inappropriate and awkward pregnant questions that she willing answered over a delicious egg casserole. I won’t lie, my baby fever hit hard after talking with her. She’s having a great pregnancy, aside from being a little tired the first trimester, she’s glowing, happy, excited, gained maybe 8lbs (I swear just in her chest) and just sounds so happy and thankful to be pregnant.

Saturday afternoon the Husband and I drove about 35 minutes with Bentley to a dog park that we heard rave reviews about. We normally steer clear of dog parks, at least the smaller fenced in kinds, and stick to hiking trails that allow dogs. This one though is a huge open hill area, with a short loop around it, surrounded by water. It was wonderful. It must have been 60 degrees and sunny, and we just walked around as Bentley played with all sorts of dogs (except small ones… when really small dogs bark or snarl at him he whines and runs away). He made besties with a great dane the size of a horse and a pitbull and I made besties with a 7lb cavalier puppy and a 5 month old golden puppy that just wanted to rub against my legs. We even got Bentley to try out the water for the first time and it was far more successful than I imagined. He didn’t swim per say, but he loved racing around in and out of the water and a few times we tricked him by throwing rocks into the water. We all left covered in mud, smiling and on a vitamin D high.

 

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Post beach day.

Post beach day.

Sunday morning I was up early, running around to CVS looking for tape and more wrapping paper as the bridal shower gift I got was HUGE and I was having a hell of a time wrapping it. Around 11 I was off, and spent a good deal of the afternoon at the shower. To be honest, it’s not my favorite thing to spend a day at a bridal shower, especially when I only knew 3 people there, but I sat with my Mother-in-Law and chatted for a while and played along with games and present opening and made the best of it.

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I was home sometime after 4 and the husband and I ordered take-out (someone take away the pasta from me, please!) and proceeded to watch a marathon of the walking dead episodes. It was so nice to sit on the couch with the windows open, fresh air blowing in, Bentley snoozing at our feet and just relaxing. Somewhere in there too I made one hell of a chocolate chip ice cream sandwich. I should have gotten into bed early, but oh well, we stayed up to finish season 3 until almost midnight. It was worth it!

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I actually feel refreshed today. Happy. Excited. And SO THANKFUL that it’s warm and sunny.

Changing perspective

Something Becelisa commented on one of my last posts hit hard. “it’s all perspective and the challenge is to recognize the positive in where you are now. because one day way too soon today will become just another memory of how things used to be. and trust me … you’ll long for the memory of what it was.”

I can’t agree more. In fact it seems to have come at a really coincidental time.

Between reading Caitlin’s post yesterday (I really like what she said about choosing a positive narrative) and watching a documentary called Happy  (I was on a documentary kick and also watched Forks over Knives which is a post for another time) the same themes kept hitting me. I can’t stop thinking about how much of my happiness I control. It’s my narrative and it’s my perspective.

And then if it wasn’t already obvious, I walked into my lunch time Flywheel class and the instructor said today’s class was all about finding joy and being in the present. Not just thinking about that end goal, but being present, even in the difficult times and finding joy and positivity in them.

One study in that documentary talked about how a group of people were exponentially happier after writing down what they were thankful for once a week. And so, cheesy as it may be, I’m going to start having “Things I’m loving/appreciating/thankful for Fridays”…sometimes it might be big serious things, sometimes it might be silly little things.

Things I’m thankful for – Friday, 4/11 

I love taking a flywheel class on Fridays during lunch. The instructor is amazing. She’s full of little anecdotes each class like, “Don’t try, just do”; “Nothing changes if nothing changes”; “Find joy”; “Today I’m a unicorn and I can do anything” (<– the funniest one by far). Her loud and motivating music rocks. She always takes me to my limit, and then makes me push me past it. In 45 minutes I get my best workout all week, and I leave red-faced and on an endorphin high for the rest of the day. Today on the TORQ board (a competition board in class) for the first time, I won every single race!

I love that my job is flexible. For the first time ever I’m in a job where I feel like a true, professional adult. While I can’t completely do away with 9-5 type hours, I do work some off hours when working with other countries so I can give and take a bit to my schedule. I probably put in more hours now, and more efficient hours, but it doesn’t feel like it because some days I can hit the gym during lunch and some days I can catch a 4:50 train home instead of waiting until after 6:00.

I am so thankful that the Husband and I had a huge success with Bentley this week. I’m not sure how much I have posted it before but Bentley is a serious, yet very playful and confident puppy. He loves daycare and socializing with tons of dogs, he loves his dog walker and going on hikes, he is so obedient (yet rambunctious) on off leash hikes with the husband and I, he loves learning new tricks (currently working on “stick ‘em up, bang! you’re dead”), and taking training classes. And yet we (nor the dog walker) could not, I mean could not get Bentley to go for a walk on the leash around our actual neighborhood. I’m talking complete meltdown, whining, thrashing, and trying to army crawl back to the house as fast as possible. Well, on Wednesday night we did it. It wasn’t perfect, there were moments he sort of spazzed, but we slowly made our way around the block, with a surplus of salami and loads of praise for him the whole time. I’d say for about 80% of it his tail was up and he was sort of prancing around. I know it’s not going to be a walk in the park going forward (trust me I tried again last night and we only got 3 houses down before I worried it would become a set back) but it’s a step forward and I’m happy, thankful and so proud. In addition to already being damn amazing, I just know one day he’ll be the perfect running partner.

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I’m so thankful that tonight the Husband and I get to sit on the couch together and just relax. He had to go to work at 3:30am today so I know he’ll be exhausted, and after a long work week and a hell of an intense flywheel class, I’m so ready to get delicious Greek take-out and veg alongside him.

I’m thankful I found the perfect dress for the wedding shower I have to attend on Sunday. It sounds silly but between not being thrilled about the current state of my body and the not quite warm enough weather for no tights, I found a ¾ length sleeve dress that is springy and perfect to be comfortable at the shower. It makes going to this shower (someone I’m not close with, yet I’m expected to be there) a lot better!

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I’m thankful I quit procrastinating about a few big things this week. For some reason I kept putting off renewing my passport (with my married name) and getting a wedding shower gift for Sunday. On Wednesday I told myself to cut it out, got my new passport picture, filled out the forms, and sent it off expedited so I can 100% get myself to St. Thomas with my family in May (clearly what I’ll be thankful for in a few weeks :) ). I also now don’t have to worry about finding a good gift off the registry at last-minute. Each time I remember that these two things are done, I feel relieved.

The weather. OH THE WEATHER. Thank you mother nature for this spring weather. I couldn’t be happier that we are finally hitting 50’s and 60’s with sun. I feel refreshed, rejuvenated and motivated all because I can step out my door, without shivering and without slipping on ice!

I’m thankful that I can do a half-ironman. That’s just it, that I can do it. I don’t care about my time, I truly don’t. I want to enjoy this experience. So far, the only thing that has been standing in my way has been me. I’m so grateful that I have the money and time to dedicate to something like this. I’m proud that even though my bike hours bump up and up, I keep getting them done. I’m sooo thankful for the endorphin high after my workouts, no matter what my day is like, it’s like a total reset on my mood.

Time to go enjoy this weekend!

 

Last night I dreamt of B. Yeah, that B. Oddly I don’t remember the dream, I just know I woke up feeling a deep sadness.

I can’t really remember the last time I talked to him. I know it’s been over 2 years now since an actual conversation. Almost a full year since even a polite “happy birthday” text.

The feeling I woke up with was more nostalgia I guess than sadness. At times I miss how simple life felt back then, and with B. Get in the car and drive to Maine for the weekend. Hop a flight to Canada or Ireland. Meet after work for dinner in the city and stay up until 1am having deep conversations. Jam pack one long date day from 7am coffee and breakfast on until 11pm bedtime.

But the truth is, it’s not B who I miss. Because when I really remember how I felt back then it was… unsure. Anxious. This feeling of skating on thin ice, always. Deep down I knew very early on, that B didn’t want to get married and have kids. Yet, we connected deeply on many other levels, but never on our main values. So we continued on, happily at times, but always I knew – if and when I brought up that someday I wanted those things, he’d let me go. And eventually I did bring them up, and immediately, he let me go.

The more I’ve thought about it this morning, the more I realize that the nostalgia for those times is because life lately, and in the past year has just felt so busy. Sure sometimes it’s busy with really fun and great things. And sometimes it’s busy with crap that I don’t want to do. Lately I feel more and more like my time is less my time, and more time to meet obligations.

Part of it is perspective. Part of its changed priorities. Part of it is getting older, and becoming more established – in my marriage, career, with friends and family. Starting a family, even if that just means adopting Bentley.

Looking back, when I was with B I was working a job versus a career. I was finishing up my masters. I was 24 years old and everything felt exciting and fun and nothing felt that serious. Everything was about change, and it was supposed to be.

Now, money and savings are far more important. Trying to buy or build a house is a priority. Taking care of a puppy is a serious responsibility. Work isn’t just a 9-5, I’m frequently having 12 hour days. Marriage takes work, compromise and time… time that somehow keeps slipping away. I don’t see the Husband during the week anymore. We get to sleep together (which I love) but he usually gets home after 10pm. So we have weekends.

But weekends, oh the weekends. They are full of seeing this person or that person visiting, or this baby shower, or that wedding shower, or this wedding, or that 30th birthday. Sometimes the Husband can come along, but many times he can’t.

Oh and training. Fitting in training. 3+ hour bike rides on the weekend too.

Jeez, I need to snap out of this funk today.

Nothing changes if nothing changes…

Don’t try, just DO

I broke my lent promise this morning. When my alarm went off at 5:40, I shut it off. I didn’t even snooze, I just said, absolutely not. I’ve had over a week straight now of 5:40am mornings. I actually have been loving my morning workouts and really do like getting them in before work.

However, yesterday, I hit training hard. I got up at 5:40 and took an intense flywheel class. When lunch time rolled around at work, I took another. That’s almost 2 hours of intense biking. I’m talking all out each class, hills and sprints for 600+ calorie burning classes, and somehow I found myself having the energy to go harder in the second class. In reality, that’s just a blip of what I’ll be doing on race day – but I think the combination of my 6 days straight last week, (Saturday off), then another couple of days of hard training in combination with getting my period and my body just wanted sleep this morning. I am not even sore per say (I’m tight for sure) but I just wanted more than 6 -7 hours of sleep (especially because I’m still adjusting to the Husband coming into bed, tossing/turning/and talking). And so I slept another glorious hour and woke up at 6:40 feeling much, much better.

My boss has said a few times that I should feel free to adjust my work hours since I’m putting an average of 5-10 night hours in total each week with this project. So today I am finally taking her up on that offer and I’m leaving work to catch a 4pm train. That gives me enough time to head straight to the gym, get my hour run in, then pick Bentley up, heat up my leftovers for dinner and start my night calls.

I’m having severe hatred towards the scale right now. I feel great. I’m eating better (not fantastic, but better for sure and I’m tracking calories and portions), and I’m working out 6 days a week. My clothes are fitting better, my body feels more energized and my stomach feels like it’s slowly making its way back to the inside of my pants (versus hanging over… ;) ) So whyyyyy isn’t the scale budging? I know the whole losing inches, gaining muscle, but seriously? Can’t it budge a few pounds and make me feel better?

This weather is really getting to me. I normally love snow and winter, but I’m over it by February. It’s March 25th and we are getting hit with 3-6 inches of snow tonight. This is the first time I ever remember being truly depressed about the weather. The temps are still frigid, and even down to the low teens at night. It just feels windy and dreary. I need warmth and sun. I want to feel motivated to go for a walk outside or happily walk to my car at 5:40am instead of constantly shivering, and feeling unmotivated to go outside. If it wouldn’t set off my old addiction (still going strong!) I’d probably go fake tanning just to feel warmth and sun. Bring on Spring, please!

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