Try to look on the bright side–friends, pinterest, and being hurt

One of the things I love about fitness is that it brings us together with people we might not have otherwise met. Last year at CrossFit, I met my friend Katie, who has been through many miles and Clif bars with me since. Even though we met at the gym, we realized that we are both the kind of person who wants to run to and from the CrossFit workout and who thinks the seat of a bicycle is a fine spot to spend a Saturday. Katie is always giving me someone to chase and her first Ironman this year kept me believing in my first half Ironman–and her advice got me through a lot of the things I am not sure I would have thought of along the way!

Now, a little cranky with my slow comeback from my back injury last month (I dropped a barbell on my back–the side, down low–which has affected my leg if I try to run, then my back when I did a little too much yoga, maybe, and now is giving me pins and needles at school when I sit for long stretches, and is generally keeping me from being as active as I normally am), Katie has proven to have a little life coach in her too. I didn’t ask her if I could share the text she sent me last night to cheer me up, but she is generally one of the most encouraging folks I know, so the world needs this and I’m sure she’ll understand:

“I think your injury might be getting you down. So I decided to make you a list of benefits of being injured. I’m sure you’ll consider yourself lucky after reading it.:

1) A perfect manicure lasting two weeks!
2) Hair that looks great 2 and maybe even 3 days after a wash
3) Callus free hands (see above perfect manicure)
4) Less time spent doing laundry!!
5) A chance to wear your ‘real clothes’ not just your latest lulu’s.
6) Less time showering and training = more time to spend with people you love!

And the best part of all…building up the desire and drive to train your way through the winter into next season!”

It was too good not to share, and it definitely got me out of my little pity party. Of course I still want to be training, but I remember again that the reason I train is not because my worth depends on it–but because it makes me feel good! Right now, it doesn’t. So it’s time to rest. It’s simple, even if it’s not easy.

Beyond Katie’s sweet text message, I also have been turning to pinterest during my breaks that might otherwise have been filled with workouts. Here are some of the fruits of my labour, specific to injuries and staying positive. I’ll leave out the ones of chocolately peanut buttery goodies or outfits that also seem to lure me in!

gym cute injury

truth lion injury

bulldog adorable

setback

positive pants

I will never be happy for an injury, but at least I can take Katie’s advice and try to find my positive pants every day! Yay for the interwebs, but more importantly, yay for friends.

What helps you get through injuries?
How do you stay positive when you’re feeling down about something?

a yoga class, a realization, and coming back to what matters

continue

The theme for today.

Today I took a study break to have lunch with two of my friends (who I miss and wish I saw on a more regular basis, FTR). We got to gossiping and when I mentioned an admittedly petty frustration I’m having with a blog I would probably be better off avoiding reading follow—the blogger sometimes says one thing and then does another.

My friend (lovingly) pointed out something about which I am sure there’s a cliché out there about, but I’ll just spit it out: I think I am so irked by this blogger because I can be guilty of the same thing. The things that bother us or that we judge in other people being the things that we are in some way self conscious of about or in ourselves and as dedicated as I am to loving my body, getting off the diet train, and redefining and owning what healthy and happy mean to me, I still slip up.

For a number of reasons (a list I’ll keep to myself), this month feels extra stressful. Old habits die hard and I’m finding myself looking for ways to feel like I’m in control of my world and comfort in the old ways I used to “take care” of myself using food. At yoga tonight, I found myself looking in the mirror and thinking about how much I wished my “belly” wasn’t there.

Maybe it was the instructor’s emphasis on focusing on our core (I sometimes joke that I was born without abs because my core feels non-existant), but at any rate, I found myself fixating on my abs (or lack thereof). Shame on that and shame on what happened next, but I couldn’t get my mind off of that thought for the majority of class. That being said, there’s something powerful about being stuck in a room half naked when all you want to do is get out (or being “stuck” in any situation, really), and by the end of it all I’d sorted out my thoughts.

My (condensed) thought process looked like this: It’s not fair that I spend so much time exercising and/or thinking about training and/or what I’m going to eat or not eat but I still look like this. à I could stop working out so much. à I don’t think that’s the answer…I like the workouts I do now. à I could give up ____________ (coffee, peanut butter, the occasional grain (oatmeal, rice cakes) I’ve been eating again lately. à For every restriction, there’s an equal and opposite binge. And I’m sick of yo-yoing. à Then what is the answer? à Losing weight? à You’ve been there and done that. à What’s really wrong here?

Hmmph.

Needless to say, this isn’t an internal dialogue I feel like having anymore

So what is the answer?

It’s cheesy (but that’s kind of my style), but the yoga instructor said something midclass that sparked some new thoughts in my mind. After a particularly challenging series of postures, she asked us to replace thoughts of “that was hard” with an appreciation for the fact that every time we challenge our bodies and feel the sensations that go along with that, we’re getting stronger.

Well, I’d certainly call overcoming my dose of body shame a challenge—and shifting the focus to look at it as an opportunity to get stronger relieved some of the negativity I was feeling about “still” struggling with it.

I (re)realized a few things. There’s nothing wrong with my body. If I lose 20lbs, my life will be essentially the same. I will still be stressed about my assignments. I will still get lonely and miss my family. I will still question whether or not I am on the right track or if I should have went to journalism school. I will still have bills that I wonder how I’ll ever pay without my parents’ help. I will still feel self conscious when I’m naked. I will still argue with my mother over the same old things. People I know will still get sick and die before they should.

In short, regardless of what my body looks like or how much I weigh, life will still have its ups and downs. Downs and ups. All that can happen if I take the emphasis off of the shape of my body and keep on the path towards focusing on acceptance is finding more space to love the ups. It’s tough to appreciate all that’s awesome if you’re caught up on what’s bringing you down: I have assignments that challenge me. I have a family to miss. I always know that I can get into journalism school if I need to. I have my parents’ support while I figure out how to pay my own bills. I have a healthy body that carries me through life. My mother and I are close enough that we can argue about things. I am blessed to have a big circle of friends filled with people who have impacted me.

I’ve realized this and I’ve said it before, but what needs to change isn’t the size of my body—it’s my beliefs and my attitude about the size of my body. It’s the actions that I’m taking that aren’t really serving me, regardless of their bearing on my weight (using dieting as a coping mechanism, emotionally eating/distracting myself from my feelings, taking on too much at once, wearing stress like a badge of honour, etc. come to mind). These things might not be as easy to change as what I eat or how much I exercise, but they are the real issues. Losing weight for the sake of losing weight would be like grabbing a bandaid; making lasting change with these things it’s taken me so long to own up to (and maybe losing weight as a side effect of sorting them out–or not) gets at the real issues.

cheesy

Yoga is often like a touchstone for me and today, it really brought me back to what’s important. I found compassion for myself and my struggles and an appreciation for the ongoing process I’m working on. I found a way to get back to appreciating what’s good in my life and a bit more acceptance for where I’m at right now. l gave up some of the self judgment (and noticed some of the judgment I feel towards that other blogger slipping away) and took my focus onto what really matters to me. Rather than hating myself for being in that thought process, I realized that I’m loving (in the love-hate sense of the word) the opportunity to get stronger in what I stand for: finding the sweet spot where happy and healthy are at the max.

pretty!

Have you gone through a process of learning to love/accept your body? Were there ups and downs?
Do you find yoga helps you come back to your intentions? How do you centre yourself?
Do you think losing weight improves your life in grandiose ways? 

weekend wrap: pumpkins and peppers and more

It’s the weekend, which means it’s time to get grateful! 

Like I said last week, I want to start a gratitude practice. Here’s what I’m thankful for this week:

  • fall…It’s September, which means a lot of my favourite things are fair game…sweaters, boots, scarves, pumpkin spice at Starbucks. Did I mention this is my favourite time of the year?

psl

  • migraines…I have come to realize that my migraines are actually a sort of a “Slow the f*ck down” pause message from my body. This week, when my foot started to feel a bit better (yay!), I dove into workouts and running errands full force. By Thursday, I woke up with a migraine and a reason to take a morning off to chill and relax.
  • possibility…I keep coming back to this inspirational cheese about the gift of uncertainty. Grad school orientation week left me feeling disoriented (what classes am I taking? how am I ever going to get to the point where I could write a thesis? what am I doing with my life?) but rather than continue to stressing hard about it, I’m reminding myself that if I had all the answers, things would be boring. If a masters wasn’t challenging and new and thus confusing, I wouldn’t be doing it. nothing
  • peppers…A friend of mine at the gym is always posting updates about her garden bounty and has pretty impressive abilities in the kitchen. She’s been kind enough to invite me and another gal from the gym over to make salsa with her this weekend. I am really excited–a major reason I want a house is so that I can have a walk in closet garden where I can grow my own food, but in the meantime, generous friends are giving my inner martha yet another outlet!

salsa making

That’s it for this week…

World, thank you!

gratitude

Mondays can be marvellous!

Mondays can be marvelous and they should be marvellous.

Today was one of those days and I’m going to give myself credit for filling a dreary day with awesome things that ended up brightening it (and my mood!).

After this morning’s post, I met up with Sarah for coffee. She’s a kindred spirit (ha ha) so we had a good chit chat and life isn’t really complete until I have me some Starbucks.

I made a quick lunch of leftovers (cauliflower, chicken — no photo kids!) and then started on my to do list. I made a doctor’s appointment, set up some apartment viewings, and made a new spin playlist for tonight’s class.

I also ate the hugest carrot ever but the photo is beyond inappropriate. Use your imagination–or don’t!

The day went really quickly but I made it to GFC for an adjustment. I knew I’d be out of it because of all the stuff that I stressed about over the weekend–but I am still amazed at how much clearer I felt after. I sorted a lot out mentally and then I think that Rachelle just put the icing on the cake.

Afterwards, I headed to Komoka to visit my friend Lori, whose baby is just over 4 months and is just beyond cute! It was good to catch up with her and to spend some time there before I came back to London. I had time to kill before spin so I ate my dinner at Starbucks and journalled. I felt so clear and so inspired (I told you — that adjustment adjusted more than my spine) — and you’ll see the fruits of that labour soon enough!

After spin and a quick visit to the weight room (I think I used the squat rack for the first time in … too. damn. long.), I fixed myself another treat (in the mix this time = almond butter, cocoa, flax seed, a bit of honey, and coconut) and now here I am. I’m going to work on channeling that inspiration and then call it a night. Tide yourself over by reading Dr. K’s awesome post about abundance and scarcity and his take on something I’ve only tried to touch on. To me, living with abundance at the forefront is about realizing that there’s enough awesome to go around and that we all deserve it. That plays out as helping others, lifting them up, sharing, and realizing that you deserve all the good in the world–without feeling guilty for going after it (money, health, love, whatever)!

Tomorrow I’m going to wake up early, head to Sarnia for a bit and get into the doctor (I’ve been rescheduling for a really long time and it’s the end of the summer) but I’ll be back to London in the afternoon. I’m hoping for some yoga, some froyo with friends, and more inspiration. 🙂

20120827-215626.jpg

20120827-215631.jpg

How was your Monday?
Do you have a take on what it means to live in abundance?

Good and bad and everything in between

Hi! I’m back to London (and a computer) and I’ve been dying to make a real post, but there’s a lot on my mind so it could get messy.

I think a quote is in order to start this off and to let you know what page I’m on:

“I believe that everything happens for a reason.
People change so that you can learn to let go,
things go wrong so that you appreciate them when they’re right,
you believe lies so you eventually learn to trust no one but yourself,
and sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together.”

– Marilyn Monroe

Tough Mudder was in a word: tough. I don’t even think I can do a full race recap right now because I’ve blocked it out of my memory…but I’ll try ;)!

We got up bright and early and hit the road after some breakfast–our drive was supposed to be about an hour and a half and it was a nice morning with a pretty sunrise.

20120820-171715.jpg

20120820-171721.jpg

Nina, Andrew and I carpooled and met up with Sonya and Sarah and their spectator friends to go to the race site (on a school bus — fun right?).

20120820-171730.jpg

Once we got there it was all about getting pumped up (aka waiting around for our 9:50 start time).

20120820-171735.jpg

20120820-171747.jpg

To start, you actually had to hop over a mini wall. Funny. I used a boost.

After they totally pumped us up (lots of cheering, some anthem-singing, high fives, etc.), we were on our merry 16km way. Up and down and up and down and up and down and then up and down hills. Our 6th member, Steve, found us right away — and we were off! Ski hills, not bunny hills. So when I say that we “ran” the course, you can infer that it was a mix of running, walking, trudging, and crawling. Plus swimming, technically…

There were 20 obstacles (I think) and the ones that stick out as the most fun were the arctic enema, funky monkey (monkey bars over water which I totally made it across with a smile!) and the mud mile. There was also essentially a giant slip and slide down mud on a hill which was just plain old fun, but I’m not sure what that one was called!

For those 3 fun obstacles, there was also plenty of hills to climb and some really shitty obstacles. Like being zapped. Over and over again in two different obstacles — electric eel and electroshock therapy. Yeah, I survived, but I won’t lie to you — I cried. And I got cranky. And I had to apologize to my team for it and move on and thank god the hardest of the shocks came at the end. I literally crawled to the finish but whatever. Done and done.

We were lucky enough to have spectators who snapped some photos of us in action, but we look pretty dirty (and you can see my cranky face ;)!).

after you…into the ice!

In the ice bath, Sarah popped her shoulder out. Then she put it back in and went on with the race. Definition of epic.

The venue was gorgeous!

Those wires look little…but don’t be fooled. OW

Beer helped bring back the smiles.

20120820-171753.jpg

I probably wouldn’t do another tough mudder real soon. I’m not just shook up by the electroshock, it was also expensive (over 150$) and one of those things I think you can check off your bucket list 😉 and be done with! I am glad I did it — but I heard a story about a guy who did it 3x this weekend in Toronto and I think he is psycho. That is all. We did have fun hanging out after the race with our matching shirts and sunburns!

20120820-171758.jpg

20120820-171809.jpg

After we kind of relived (whined about) the race for a while, we packed up and hit the road. The traffic back to Mississauga sucked, to put it nicely.

We pulled over for snacks (it was almost 3 and breakfast and the bananas, LARA bar, and apples I’d eaten weren’t cutting it). I had chili at Tim Horton’s and was much less hangry driving the rest of the route to drop Nina off. 20120820-171813.jpg

Even though we were late getting back to London, we met up for sushi. It was my first time! And it was delicious, but I’m not a big rice girl so I mostly ate meat and tempura. It is what it is.

20120820-171823.jpg

20120820-171827.jpg

20120820-171832.jpg

20120820-171836.jpg

20120820-171845.jpg

Afterwards, some of us went out for drinks. I don’t know how I was still awake–but I guess the coffee (which may or may not have had Bailey’s in it) did the trick. Today I had nothing important to get up for so I was in bed til lunchtime. So lunch was breakfast! I hung out with Angela and got my car checked out (it was making a hella funny sound but it’s okay and all fixed up), rebuilt my bike, and half-unpacked/repacked for Pennsylvania).

20120820-171849.jpg

lunch: sausage over kale, apples, and some maple dressing with dried cranberries

20120820-171853.jpg

snack at Starbucks

 

Now I just finished a quick dinner and am going to head to yoga. My body is NOT in the state to feel good teaching spin–my hip was a mess after the hills and the car ride yesterday and I feel like a train hit me (or like I got tough muddered…). I did get to the chiropractor today which left me feeling energized (though it might have been the positivity and the fact that I got to whine for a few minutes about how tough the race was ;)!) and like I can move my neck again! 🙂

20120820-185444.jpg

pork over swiss chard with raspberry vinaigrette

20120820-191247.jpg

Dessert: digging into my awesome chocolate find from the conference and trying out some cranberry tea!

Things I’m sick of include living out of a suitcase and eating tons of dried fruit and nuts. I am craving a little bit of routine but I know going to my grandma’s for a few days is going to be fun and relaxing. I’m looking forward to getting away–if that makes any sense since I’ve hardly been home–since where she lives is so rural and simple. I plan on reading, journalling, blogging, etc….all the good stuff I feel like I’ve been missing out on lately! I am bringing my TRX and my kettlebell and leaving my bike here–if I do much I think I’ll take it to the park or find a trail to run on while I’m there. I’m still tired from everything that’s been going on I think and one thing I am learning to take to heart is that if you’re tired or sick or injured, what’s the point in stressing yourself out with a workout that you feel like you SHOULD do? (Hint: there’s not much point for me!).

Anyways, it’s zen time! I hope you enjoyed my whining and ranting about the race and that you’re all happy since I’m back. 🙂

Have you ever done a Tough Mudder Race? What’d you think?
Do you do well with travelling?

Silver linings

At one of the gyms I work, we often do an exercise at our staff meetings where we go over “The good, the  bad, and the ugly.”

Yesterday was good, bad, tiring, and weird. That’s the best summary I can give.

I’ll start with the good:

  • I got to go on a pretty awesome, sunny bike ride to Port Stanley with my friends. It’s about 95km round trip, so it was nice to have company! 😀
20120709-091154.jpg

THREE BIKING BOYFRIENDS! JK. But three biking friends = still good!

20120709-091201.jpg

  • We slept in and hit the road later on (as it was not sticky hot for once!). This means I got to eat breakfast first. Simple pleasures.

20120709-091136.jpg

  • I felt pretty good during the ride, even if the hills and anticipation of Virginia got me a litttttttttle discouraged. I did a good job of eating and hydrating, methinks! Bonus.

20120709-091121.jpg

20120709-091141.jpg

  • There was a flat tire but there were also plenty of tubes, CO2 cartridges, and skills (none of these on my behalf) so we didn’t get too held up!

20120709-091208.jpg

  • I went to Sunfest yesterday afternoon–it was a “cross cultural arts festival” and a big ol’ party all weekend in the park! There was the most delicious lemonade of my life (hello re-hydration and carb refuelling), friends, and sunshine. Win, win, and did I mention win?
20120709-091232.jpg

20120709-091237.jpg

20120709-091242.jpg

  • My other eats (a bedtime snack of cottage cheese and nut butter and leftovers for dinner) were not so beautiful in photo, but pleased me perfectly!

20120709-091259.jpg

  • My mom came down and spent the night. We had a bunch of quality time and of course that meant stupid pictures.
20120709-091303.jpg
  • I got to hang out with another friend for a few hours yesterday and got to look at some very cool photos he took–a sneak preview in his words. 🙂 Aren’t I special? Well, you don’t really need a sneak peek to see his work, but still.
Now for the bad…
  • I fell at the end of our ride. My scrapes don’t really phase me — war wounds are cool, right? — but my head hurt a lot yesterday and my helmet showed the damage. Falling off your bike sucks. 90km in I was tired, there were geese, it was bumpy, and that’s all I’ve got in terms of an explanation. All of a sudden I was on the ground. Hmmmm….

20120709-091222.jpg

20120709-091228.jpg

I don’t know how but I managed to scrape my lip. I guess I was smiling or laughing when I went down. Moral of the story is–I’m okay, I could have hurt something serious, and at least I got hurt on a really awesome ride and close to home. 🙂 Oh, and wear a fucking helmet. And yeah, f bomb necessary. My brain would have been donezo if I wasn’t wearing it, and I was going “slow” on a trail, so you KNOW I’m not taking the excuses you’re trying to dummy up in your brain.

So I really like the good bad and ugly exercise and the chance to vent, but I really want to change the ugly for me to the silver lining.

Like I said, I got quality time. ER trips are more fun with friends — my photographer friend broke his finger (not fun) so I took him. I was going to get checked out at my mom’s urging (can you see where this is all making sense now?) but after 4 hours in the waiting room and more to go, I gave up. Bedtime was 2am, but whatever.

20120709-091253.jpg

I feel better today, by the way, so I think my head is okay! My mom woke me up a few times and there was nothing wrong – other than being sore, nothing to worry about, I don’t think. I have the advice of countless google searches (;) – kidding!) and some friends who know what they’re talking about. Andddddd I have an excuse to buy a new helmet. One silver lining! Amen. The thought of hurting my brain conjured up these images of the slides from my sports injuries class back in 2nd year. Sit in a dark room with no TV or computer or thinking. Hi, isolation. I realized how much worse that would be than a broken arm or not being able to bike or getting hurt. And then I felt a twinge of “holy shit, stop complaining about your hip, stop complaining about the cellulite on your thighs, stop worrying about whether you’re 130 or 150 or 170lbs and start appreciating the fact that you have a working body and that you can literally do whatever you want with your head”. If that’s not a silver lining, I don’t know what is!

Now that that’s out there, I’m letting it go. Like I said, I’m sore today so I’m going to keep my teaching to just a bootcamp (come on out if you’re in London) and I’m lucky enough to have someone covering my spin class. Too intense, I think, and I’m appreciative that I can take the day off. I’m going to run my errands today — since I leave tomorrow, I need to get things checked off. Any exercise I do is going to be light and I’m good with that. I’ve got tons of biking ahead. 🙂

First on my agenda: breakfast, obviously. Caffeine: check. Next up: as many to dos as possible to fill the day til it’s time to kick butts in the park.

20120709-091308.jpg

One last time: wear a helmet. Be grateful. It could always be worse — I got a big ol’ reminder of that!

Have you ever had a fall on your bike? I fell a few summers ago. 1/3 years is not a bad ratio and I’ve not been seriously hurt so I’ll take it!
What did you do this weekend?
When’s the last time you went to emerg?

A treat

Oh baby you’re getting posts left right and centre from me–what a treat!

I must have been looking for that treat for myself — and I found it…I’ve two trips to Kiwi Kraze this week already, but more on that later! The real treat is actually how much fun I’m having running around and doing all this fitness and blogging. Hi, what I want to do for the rest of my life… ;)!

Luckily, I ran around enough that my hollow leg must have been justified yesterday. After a sweaty spin class — I have a new playlist I’m just itching to share — I had a quick shower and dinner break before making my bootcamp debut in London.

20120705-224420.jpg

I’m on a kale kick — this time with avocado and sausage and sun dried tomatoes! Quick and delish!

Just let me say, I had an awesome and really good looking group of girls. It’s so cool when I see like minded healthy people coming together. And it’s really cool when I get to kick their butts–or at least give it my best shot.

Last night’s workout went like this:

Warmup – cones (it’s standard and fun and works!)

Muscle conditioning – favouring this in lieu of much cardio with the heat!

10 to 1 squats and pushups

plank / plank up down / high plank / plank up down / plank

superman series

(we repeated this and we took the second countdown with partners and switched up the plank series to have mountain climbers instead of the up/downs)

marathon abs: 2 rounds of 20-25 raised leg crunches, raised leg oblique crunches, leg raises, and sit-ups

Cooldown/stretch

It was a sweaty, buggy, and I think awesome workout, but only time and the extent of how sore these gals are when they giggle or walk around will tell the truth! I’m anxious to hear, though!

One of my boot campers was a star who I was so glad to have with me. Breanna and I met a while back at the campus gym in one of my spin classes. She was one of my all star morning spinners who always gave it her all. I had no idea she had a blog until last year and since then I’ve been glad to be a friend of hers — she’s definitely got an awesome thing going over at Bee Goes Bananas! 

20120705-224426.jpg

When I admitted I was heading for froyo post-class, she even hooked me up with a 2 for 1 coupon. Did I mention I love her? We had a good chat about blogging, life, and all that good stuff. And I remembered something: I need to spend more time with this gal! ❤

I split the coupon with my friend and fellow fitness instructor Angela. This is a cool gal and she confirmed that with her rockstar haircut and kind kind words on our drive home. 🙂

20120705-224437.jpg

And FYI, I think I just abused the coupon got the heaviest froyo ever. It must have been all the fruit — cuz I never put fruit on!

20120705-224443.jpg

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again — if froyo is wrong, I don’t want to be right!

That seems like a pretty good bedtime thought, doesn’t it? If not, knowing that my alarm is set for the crack of dawn to do this all over again should do the trick. Look out bed, here comes my face.

How often do you go for dessert/froyo/ice cream?
How come you didn’t come to bootcamp tonight?
Do you have many blogger friends in your city? 

Stuffed

Today was stuffed with fun, filled with sun, and oh so awesome. I am stuffed with froyo and a pretty delicious dinner and I’m just counting down til I face plant into my own bed! Home sweet home to my semi-airconditioned apartment = hallelujah!

I started my morning off with a run along the water in Bright’s Grove. It was beautiful. I really miss running along the water there–it’s where I grew up and so this morning’s run was my normal route until last year! Missing it…

Who wouldn’t want to run here?

I didn’t feel awesome during my run. It was pretty hot and I decided to just do a simple loop and I think it was probably about 4 slow miles. After the run I did a quick playground workout using the monkey bars with the best view around, in my opinion.

20120702-213025.jpg

My workout was a countdown with 10 reps each of squats, pushups, burpees, sit-ups, and (jumping) pull-ups, then 9 of each, 8, … 1 of each! It was really hard for me — the burpees got my heart rate up as expected but I looked at my heart rate and saw numbers higher than I have in a long time following the jumping pull-ups. Holy smokes I miss these workouts and am so happy to be back doing them!

I went to the water immediately following this one, which was particularly sweaty, and made good on my promise to jump in the lake post-run this summer. Done and done! 🙂

After I went back to my mom’s to change and pack up my stuff and grab lunch (leftovers), my afternoon was about seeing a bunch of friends (literally three different groups worth) on the beach.

20120702-213033.jpg

20120702-213051.jpg

20120702-213056.jpg

20120702-213101.jpg

Fun! And yes, I put on sunscreen but I still got a bit too much sun!

We also played volleyball, football, and all that good stuff. I haven’t spent this much time just doing things for the sake of doing them in a long time and let me tell you — it felt awesome!

After we’d had our fill of sun, a few of my friends and I had dinner at Skeeter’s. My fav restaurant! I love the view and even though our service was slow, I was smiling. It might have had something to do with the beer I had and the favour that Angela gave me driving my car back — laying in the sun + lightweight = recipe for tipsy.

20120702-213108.jpg

20120702-213113.jpg

I could not polish off this chicken club / caesar salad combo, but I did my best!

We ended the day with a stop at Kiwi Kraze for froyo when we got back to town. Perfection. My froyo was even festive and I didn’t mean to! Funny how that happens!

20120702-213121.jpg

I was a bit ambitious and couldn’t finish this either…that’s a first! …but luckily I’ve got friends who could!

If this weekend was about fun and relaxation, I think I win! I saw so many friends — 🙂 — and I even put a dent in my summer bucket list–>sailing, fireworks, friendship bracelets, jumping in the lake post-run, etc. I’m plugging away and it’s hard to believe it’s July. I fully intend to make a fall list or maybe just to break out the bucket list for life when this summer one’s done! 🙂

This week is pretty low key — bootcamp, some spin classes, a meeting with a prof about an independent study, and gearing up for my bike trip to Virginia (I leave next week). There should be ample time for blogging and I’m looking forward to my first week without school on my mind. I got my mark back — a 79 <– not my best but certainly not anything to be worried about — so even that back of my mind concern has been put to rest!

Did I mention I spent this weekend smiling?

20120702-213117.jpg

candid, instagram-ed summary of the weekend!

It’s about time

Nah, I’m not talking about my race time from tonight’s Go the Distance race, but I do feel pretty content with my 41:36 8km time. I also feel good knowing that the money raised from the event went to such a good cause. I saw quite a few familiar faces at the race, including one friend who raised over $1000 for Hope’s Garden. AMAZING! She ROCKS.

20120622-205254.jpg

They sent home the age group winners (2nd and 3rd too) with gift cards for Runner’s Choice (a running store here in London) so I have $10 to buy…something. Suggestions? I felt pretty sick during the race. My stomach is off and I found the chest cold I thought was pretty much gone. Things were clicking and snapping and hurting so you better believe I have a date with my foam roller and I think I need to rededicate not just to doing those awesome strength workouts I’m so fired up about (I started a box of WODs and ripped out routines from magazines and posted a teaser about bootcamp on Facebook today) but also to stretching, foam rolling, wearing my compression socks, and doing the little muscle work that I know is important for injury prevention. Promise!

I’m not sure what was up with my stomach. Nerves? I found myself nibbling all kinds of things this afternoon–I’m definitely one of those stress eaters. I did a pretty good job of fuelling today though, I’d say. I went to yoga this morning. I blogged. I sort of cleaned. My mom came for a quick visit and ran some errands and read some magazines with me (I’m a sucker for this month’s fitness mags since they’ve all got Olympic specials in them!). I sat around. 🙂

20120622-205303.jpg

20120622-205307.jpg

20120622-205313.jpg

20120622-205319.jpg

20120622-205325.jpg

20120622-205330.jpg

Now I am so glad to be done for the day. I’m pooped and my stomach feels off! Must be a combination of a busy week, weird eats, the race, and everything catching up to me but I just want to foam roll and face plant into bed. Laundry can wait. Dishes can wait. Sleep is essential! I just had some chocolate (dark–bring on those antioxidants) so cravings are satisfied. I am thinking cough syrup and bedtime are in order. Not going to get sucked into Facebook, into another Jillian Michaels podcast (I think I’ve heard 5 today–catching up on old ones!), or into reading blogs (sorry guys). I am hoping to go home for a bike ride in the morning tomorrow and then come back for some fun with friends in London tomorrow. Somewhere in the next 4 days I’ve got a lot of studying to do…gonna worry about that later! 🙂 I’m preoccupied with how excited I am for finishing the tasks on my summer bucket list, having time to read non-school things at my leisure, for the opening of the outdoor pool (sweet one piece tan, let’s go), and for starting bootcamp<–especially this, but I guess if you’re going to be distracted it might as well be distracted by awesome.

How do you unwind after a long week?
Have you ever raced an 8k? What’d you think of the distance? – For me, I prefer 10k because it’s a bit more comfortable. Or maybe just familiar and I wasn’t sure how hard to push, or maybe it was the cold, or maybe I’m over thinking this! I had a good run and I was on the edge of my comfort zone and those kinds of workouts are important so I’m going to call it all a success. 😀
What are you doing this weekend?

  

Off to a good start

Happy Saturday!

The rest of yesterday went fast and was filled with fun.

The spin class at campus rec was fun to teach–Chelsea made it out, which always makes things more fun, and the mic worked. Bonus.

After class, Ellen and Angela came over to eat dinner/get ready for our evening on the town. I made BBQ chicken, potatoes, and salad, which tasted great with good company and good wine!

20120428-153204.jpg

Our night out was fun, but a little bittersweet since a bunch of people are leaving (for the summer mostly, but Nina is done and Western and that brings a tear to my eye because I love her to death!).

We tried to ease the pain with tequila…

20120428-153211.jpg

JK. But that did happen!

So did lots of dancing, staying out way past our bedtimes, and plenty of fun.

I managed to sleep in til 10 today (a miracle for me!). I finally got up and had some breakfast, coffee with Angela, and then headed for my run.

20120428-153216.jpg

Of course I forgot to start my Garmin, but that makes my time unofficial (but trust me, my pace was slow). I took it to the trails along the river here. Best. Decision. Ever. It was gorgeous and nice to get out of the “how fast are these miles” kind of trap and to the “omg I better leap over this tree trunk”…I love trails! I won’t lie though, I had to sit on a branch and crawl over it on two occasions…it happens!

20120428-153220.jpg

When I got home I stretched and did a quick circuit 3x through: 25 sit ups, 20 kettle bell swings, 15 pushups, 10 squats, and 5 burpees. FYI burpees the day after you party a little too hard feel even more awesome than normal…

After a shower my stomach was growling so I had a late lunch (turkey and alfalfa sandwich with cheese and mayo plus some pickles).

20120428-153226.jpg

Tonight my mom’s coming for a visit and I have plans to see “The Five Year Engagement” — I hope it’s as funny as it looks in the previews. It’s been a long time since I’ve been to the movies so I’m really looking forward to it.

How are you spending your weekend?
Do you like running on trails?