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.

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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?).

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

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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.

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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!

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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.

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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).

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

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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! 🙂

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pork over swiss chard with raspberry vinaigrette

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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?

Sunday start

Happy Sunday!

I am up pretty early considering there were in fact patio beers last night and my friend and I had a good old fashioned sleepover complete with snacks (pretzels for me!) and a movie. We watched “Stick It” to the wee hours of the morning but somehow I sprung out of bed today.

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do you love stick it? or do you love stick it?

Realization: I eat really weird things. Bananas at dinner time, alfalfa sprouts at breakfast. Whatever–it makes me happy!

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Anyways, after pouring my heart out yesterday, you’d think I’d be out of stuff to say, huh? Nah. If you missed my post yesterday, I seriously want you to do the homework I suggested. And yes, I just plugged my own blog. Whatever. Read it and then rag on me for promoting it, but only after you do the work ;)!

Today is looking like a good day. I’m meeting up with some friends for a bike ride later this afternoon here in London. I often drive home to go for bike rides, but I am sick of driving and with my 10 hour car ride Wednesday morning, I think sticking around for a day is a good idea. 🙂 And biking with people here and getting used to living in London is a good thing since I’m thinking I’m going to be here for at least a bit

Speaking of my trip, I’m trying to get my life organized and planned out a bit before I head. I said it before and I’ll say it again, I”m excited for my trip but at the same time there is so much awesome happening at home right now that it’s bittersweet to leave! 10 days is a long time, but I’m going to have a great time biking up and down the hills (mountains?) in Virginia, reading my butt off, hopefully sleeping, doing some solo yoga, and sleeping. Big goals, huh? We are staying at a resort so I believe there’s hiking, tennis, and that sort of thing — I’m sure it’s going to be a blast. I have heard the wireless is a bit spotty, so I think I’m going to need a US data plan to stay connected. We’ll see…sometimes the thought of just getting away and not being constantly linked in is a breath of fresh air, no?

Speaking of that, I feel like the last week or two has just been all about fresh air, so to speak. I’m not sure if it’s because summer school is done, because something in me has shifted, or because of all the fun times I’ve been having outside being active, seeing people, etc., but I feel better than I have in a long time. I still can’t give a definitive answer about what I’m doing in the fall, but I know it’s going to be good and right and perfect. There really aren’t mistakes and the nice thing is if I don’t like where I am, I know I can change it. I know I could be at Columbia. I know I could be living anywhere and doing any job. But just because I could doesn’t mean I have to or that I should! It’s empowering to choose to be open to new things, to leave that space for those new things, and to risk being in limbo for a bit instead of just jumping into the next thing. Yes, life is short, but it’s not that short! My anxiety level is going down about all of this and I’m thinking my trip away will help me sort out some of this thinking…amen to that! 😀

Of course I have applicable cheese:

Andddd break!

Have an awesome Sunday. 🙂

Checking in


Pennsylvania has been good to me. Sunshine, quality time, shopping, a run…

I started the day off with a bowl of Kashi and Fibre 1 with a banana and soy milk (just like home).

Then my mom and I headed for a bit of shopping/errands! While we were out, we naturally ended up at Target, so we had snacks in the Starbucks there. I chose a greek yogurt with honey and then added a bit of my mom’s coffee cake crumble to make it delicious.

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I also played the crane game 🙂 … and won!

Sorry for the tummy shot!

When we got home I was ravenous so I whipped up a turkey sandwich. Best part of this bad boy = spicy mustard and american cheese. This is home sweet home!

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Here’s my haul: a fedora, anklets, a bunch of headbands that were 10 for 10 at Claire’s, pyjamas (the wild zebra shorts — I don’t believe in boring PJs), and that flannel shirt that screams lumberjack for the low low price of $1.99!

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After lunch, I headed for a run along the Buffalo Valley Rail Trail. My description is scenic but flat 🙂 It was uber hot and I felt really slow. Partway through my trek back, I turned my iPod off (there were so many birds to listen to and farms to look at, I figured I’d better enjoy it if I wasn’t distracted by my latest obsession (thanks Angela)!)

and I noticed my knee was clicking. It wasn’t bugging me, but that was a bit weird. When I got back to my car, I wasn’t feeling too hot. I went to the washroom and stretched/did some abs/pushups under the trees, and headed home. My foot started to hurt when I got out of the car, which blows. I’ll just whine: I don’t want to be injured! I already dealt with a yucky one this year and am just starting to trust my body again–this is scary! That being said, I’m not stupid. Ice, stretch, rest, etc. etc.

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And just because I like to share everything about myself, I’ll add in that while I was on my run today (mile 5 I think), my Aunt Flo came for a visit. Love her–it’s been five long years. But seriously. I must be relaxed! Might be thanks to the chocolate I devoured in the last 24 hours. I think all that remains in my treat bag is yogurt pretzels, nuts, papaya, and pretzels!

Anyways, besides chocolate, I’ve been seeing a lot of pretty countryside and a buttload of COWS!

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I had a normal snack–peanut butter and an apple–when I got home. The afternoon went quick and some thunderstorms just rolled in along with an epic dinner (we collaborated on this one — me veggies and a salad, mom meatballs and pasta, uncle bob bread <— omg bread)!

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Consider me carbed up and ready to go for a bike ride tomorrow. I am really nervous about the traffic around here–does anyone have tips for how to find SAFE routes? I know Map My Ride might help…I bookmarked a page with some suggestions. I also found some maps from a nearby town that I might check out tonight! I’m planning on going late morning/early afternoon tomorrow (provided the weather is cooperating) so the traffic shouldn’t be awful. 🙂

So far, so good!

How’s your week?

 

Roll with it

When I went to bed last night, I had internet and cable.

When I woke up this morning, I did not.

Tres interesting, no?

I’m not worrying about it since in less than an hour I’ll be hopping in the car to head to Pennsylvania and my grandma’s house! Bring on the road trip.

Maybe I’m just flying high cuz of yesterday’s impromptu fro yo after a pretty awesome power yoga class?

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Or maybe cuz I treated myself to some yogurt pretzels from that treat bag last night?

At any rate, here’s to blogging from my phone and worrying about the cable/Internet issue when I get back!

Unexpected epiphanies

Wowzer. I didn’t have any intention of this being a post about realizations or anything bigger than a bike ride this afternoon (45km ish with a friend :)!), cleaning, and what I ate today. Funny how blogging can spark insight…enjoy:

I think I blogged before that I’m feeling a bit stuck in my routine of eating the same things over and over again.

Kashi berry crisp, all bran buds, and grapes with yogurt!

My breakfast bowl was a little different, which is a start.

I spent the morning working on making my apartment presentable (it’s not disorganized mess — I have lots of things to go to my mom’s place for the winter like my boots/coats/etc.). I closed my closets for the first time in 2012! Yahoo. I also made it to the bank, which has been on my to do list for a while. Check! Then I stopped at Bulk Barn.

Things got out of hand…and there are treat bags that I can’t help but reveal.

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gluten, dairy, soy, almond/peanut free for Angela (it's my version of chicken noodle soup since she's sick :(!): think dried fruit (bananas, papaya, pineapple, and mango), dates, and skittles

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My road trip dream: yogurt covered pretzels, pretzels, chocolate covered almonds, mixed nuts, papaya, banana chips, and chocolate rosebuds

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Everything I think my mom will like! 🙂

You’d be surprised to know I went on this bulk barn blitz AFTER lunch (another turkey sandwich with cheese, sprouts, mayo, and an apple — back to boring). I couldn’t finish my lunch, though, which brings me to a weird realization I had (that probably led me to feel “brave” enough to buy MYSELF a treat bag!). Get ready for this.

  • In the past, I have ALWAYS finished my plate. I cannot remember the last time I left anything on it. I sometimes think I’m just really good at knowing how much food I want, but I think it’s a remnant of dieting days where I would literally need everything on my plate (I also wouldn’t share food then, because every bite meant so much to me) or of my recovery days where I think I cleaned a heftier plate to prove I was recovering. — NEWS FLASH: You don’t have an ED if you decide not to finish something. You also should feel fine to finish things and to go back for more. The goal is to feel satisfied–not stuffed! 
  • This epiphany made me realize that I really can leave behind old habits.
  • In the past, I also would go out and buy road trip snacks for the people I was travelling with, trying to buy things I “don’t like” anyways. Often, I’d end up eating them with my friends/family and I wouldn’t even be having what I wanted, PLUS I’d be serving up a hefty dose of guilt in the process (it’s hard to ENJOY something as a TREAT when you hear a voice telling you that you shouldn’t be eating it). — NEWS FLASH: We all deserve treats. If we allow ourselves to eat food and to enjoy it without telling ourselves we shouldn’t, they will be more satisfying and will serve their purpose as a treat–not as a reason to beat ourselves up, not as something emotional, etc. 

All this thinking made me realize: I can go away this week and I can worry about what I’m eating. Or I can truly try to channel that healthy girl I know I am and find the voice that empowers me to eat in a way that is normal, balanced, and healthy and that doesn’t use food as a distraction, a means to beat myself up, etc. I can change. Evidenced by the empowerment I felt by just deciding that I was full and didn’t need the entire plate at lunch or by the simple act of making myself an uber appealing treat bag, I can change. I can be the healthy girl I want to be. I am her! My goal for the week is to eat things in moderation. Candy on a daily basis, most likely. American junk food that I wouldn’t let myself ENJOY in the past (though I’d end up eating lots of it in bingeing fashion). Things like white bread and white potatoes (which the blogging world has a tendency to label “bad” but really are not the devil) and butter, full fat cheese, and whatever else comes up along the way. I’m not going on a junk food eating bender here. When I allow myself that flexibility and see myself succeeding and eating as a balanced person would, I feel so powerful. I know in my heart that I will crave vegetables and fruit and nutritious foods and that I will eat them–so no worries that I’m going to die from a nutritionally related disease next week, kiddos! The thing that I think people often forget that I’m trying to remind myself: I eat to live. The food I put in my body is fuel. If food is holding you back, could you just let go? What would happen if it didn’t have power? Might you not weigh what you’re supposed to (more, less, the same) without stressing about it? Might you not have more time and energy to spend working on things that matter and to seek out experiences? Because really, what are we here for if it’s not to live?

And I apologize for getting all philosophical, deep, recovery-like on you there, but I hope that made sense. I also hope I can take it and apply it.

So for dinner tonight, when I was seriously craving peanut butter and cereal, I went with it. And along the same vein as I realized above, feeling guilty about not eating veggies won’t serve me. Feeling bad about eating a lot of cereal in a day also won’t. Recognizing that at the end of the day, I fuelled myself and didn’t binge, didn’t use food as an excuse, didn’t let it rule my life: that’s healthy! So probably is my fibre intake…

Anywho, it’s time for me to finish packing and then to go get my zen on. I’m really excited for this trip…

Bring on the Tasty Cakes.

Bring on the family bonding (I miss my Grandma and uncle, I can’t remember the last time my mom and I took a road trip).

Bring on the pretty drive.

Bring on the time to read.

Bring on the time to sleep.

Bring on the bike rides in the hills.

Bring on the happy!

Have you had any of these realizations before?
What would be in your treat bag?
Have you had tasty cakes (I think I need a supplier)?