Who are you competing with?

Just the other day, I was listening to a podcast while getting ready and I felt overcome with anxiety.  I couldn’t quite pinpoint the source of my worry.  I was listening to totally inspirational stuff.  The woman’s voice coming from my phone was glowing with excitement at the adversity she had overcome only to lead her to the absolute top position in her company…also my company. Then, boom.  It hit me.  I felt like I was in competition with her.  This feeling has plagued me since I joined.  I was always wondering why other coaches had too many messages to answer, while I was fighting to get people just to respond back to me.  Once again, that feeling of I’m just not good enough had crept back in.  The enemy.  He hates us.  He knows full well what gets to each one of us and he feeds into it. I stopped, looked in the mirror, and thought, “I have never been good at competing with others, but I am great at competing with myself.”  I have always been an athlete, but one who fights to better herself every day.  Any time it came to racing another person to a goal, I froze and failed. I was competitive cheerleader through high school and college.  Long-distance, 2-time marathon, runner in my mid-20s.  To a short-lived Cross-fit stint between my two marathons. Oh yeah.  I can compete with myself.  That’s what I have always done.  And you know what?  I can beat myself, every single time.  I know that truth in my heart.  I learned new stunts and routines.  I beat my fastest running times.  I lifted more weight and more reps.  I. Can. Beat. Myself.  And I am the only one standing in the way of myself.

God has not give me a spirit of timidity but one of power and love and self-discipline.

I will not let the enemy keep me from my dreams, because that’s what he does my friends.  Did you know that?  If you are feeling not ready, apprehensive, nervous, that’s because something BIG is about to happen.  You just have to decide, are you ready to fight for it?

things i miss about running

So, I think, I am retired from running.  I know all you runners are gasping at this and trust me, it’s not an easy thing for me to say.  I have actually been considering it for a while now.  Ever since I injured another part of my body while my torn hamstring was healing.  Don’t worry, these were not my only injuries ever as a runner.

Truth is, running is hard.  It takes a lot out of your body, especially long-distance running, which was my preferred method.  I’m sad.  There are so many things I will miss.

things i miss

  1. Exploring the city on foot
  2. The feeling of accomplishment as I top a hill
  3. Crossing a finish line
  4. Being one with nature
  5. Seeing how far and fast I could go
  6. Jamming to my playlist
  7. Making up a new playlist
  8. Runner’s High
  9. Reflection
  10. Running in a summer rain

Some of these things I can experience by walking around or hiking.  I plan on doing a lot of hiking now.  That is something I never would have done before because I was so concerned about getting my run in, but now, I have all the time in the world.  It’s kind of weird to think that.  I started running when I was 26 and I am retiring 5 years later.  I don’t want to, but my body does.  I have to listen to my body.  It’s not worth not being able to walk when I am older.

Have you had to hang up your running shoes?  What would you miss if you did?

why I quit the gym

For a little time last year, I was a member of a gym.  I joined for the pool.  I was training for a marathon and had gotten injured.  I needed a pool to continue my endurance training.
Did a pool keep me at my current fitness level? No.  Did a building full of equipment keep me at peak fitness?  No.  Did I enjoy my time at the gym?  Again.  No.
why i quit
So, let’s go through the reasons why working out at home is the bomb.

1.  Money – The gym was costing me too much money. I was paying $50 a month and not getting anything for it.  Yeah, I had access to all these machines and weights but I didn’t know how to use them.  I didn’t have a plan.  I wasn’t motivated.  There was no end in sight.

-With my home workouts, I have a plan.  I know what workout to do and when.  I have personal access to some of the nation’s top trainers.  Why on earth would I hire a trainer here?

2.  Time – The gym is 20 minutes away from home and not on my way home from work. That’s 40 minutes of my day wasted.  In the words of Sweet Brown, “Ain’t nobody got time for dat!”  Oh, and to top it off, the gym closed at 5pm on the weekends.  What tha??  I mean, I don’t know about y’all but sometimes I need to go later in the day.

– I can workout at home, anytime I want, and save 40 minutes a day!  That adds up when you work a full-time job, a part-time job, and are trying to start your own business.

3. Support – I was intimidated to use the machines and free weights. All of the cardio machines faced the weight area. I was always so paranoid that everyone behind me was criticizing my form while I was lifting or on the machines.

-Well, in my own home, no one can see what the heck I’m doing.  I can dance around when my favorite song comes on and no one would know.  Plus, I have all my online friends to encourage me.

balogo

So, in short, I am very, very happy I quit the gym.  Not only am I in better shape, but I am happier and have more money.  🙂  And that’s always a good thing.

What about you?  Are you a gym-goer?

What do you like about it?  What don’t you like?

 

4.

gettin’ fixed

So much has happened since I last wrote, I’m not sure I will be able to fit it all in one blog.  Here goes with thing numero uno: I started the 21 Day Fix.

I will admit it has been hard, downright difficult at times, but definitely doable with a little planning and restraint/willpower.  Let me start over by telling you exactly what it is I’m doing.

The Fix is a 21 day program. (Duh!)  Each day there is a different workout to do, but that’s not all there is with this thing.  It also keeps up with nutrition…uhh, what?!  That is my downfall every time I try to get really fit.  I’m not too proud to admit it.  Even though I would like to think I have it all under control sometimes, I don’t.

I love working out!  It’s a passion of mine.  Okay, maybe that’s taking it a bit far, but I do enjoy it (usually).  As most of you know I’ve run and trained for half and marathons.  Those take a lot of discipline to do all the workouts, but never once did I restrict what I was eating while training for those.

Now that I am a coach, I’ve decided I need to take my eating habits more seriously and in consideration, especially when I’m trying to help others eat more healthily.  I talked about this on my Lifestyle Accountability podcast. (Which will be featured this Saturday, April 12th.  Eek!)

So I started this new plan where I eat so many of each type of food a day.  It comes with these handy-dandy little containers, colored for a certain food group.  Here’s the breakdown -> Purple – fruits, Green – veggies, Red – protein, Yellow – carbs, Blue – fats/cheese, Orange – oils/dressings.  Of course, they get smaller and you are allowed different amounts of each one depending on your caloric goal.  I am in the 1200-1499 calorie range for now.  I will probably up that when I go back to P90X3 and Combat workouts and running.

containers

I spent my Sunday evening cooking and prepping.  I baked chicken with Mrs. Dash and “fried” lean ground turkey on the stove top with taco-like spices.  I made about a 1.5 lbs of chicken and 1.25 lbs of turkey.  Keep in mind that I am only cooking for myself.  I also proportioned out some salads for lunch with spinach and cherry tomatoes.  That way I had ready-made meals and didn’t resort to the drive-thru, as is my fall back. Here is what a typical day looked like for me.  I am a creature of habit so I stuck with the same meals quite a bit.

lunch

Breakfast:  Vanilla Shakeology, Almond Milk, PB2

AM Snack: Almonds, Jicama

Lunch: Spinach, Cherry Tomatoes, Chicken, and Blueberries

PM Snack: Pear

Dinner: Turkey Tacos with Spinach and Cherry Tomatoes

Yep, I am Plain Jane, but, it works for me!  I got in all my nutrients and I felt great, even after my workouts.  I can’t wait see my final results at the end of the 21 days.  Only 14 more to go!

P.S. If you would like to know more about this plan, leave your email below or go to the contact me page.  I’ll get back to you asap! 🙂

released

Guess what?!  I’ve been cleared to run 1 mile!!! I am ecstatic but something inside me is saying, “Don’t get too excited yet…you have tried this before.”  And I have, but it didn’t last.  I thought I was ready but I wasn’t…at least, I wasn’t ready to run 5 miles, like the overzealous idiot I was.  Soooo, I’m running 1.  That’s what my physical therapist told me to do and that’s what I’ll do.  I’m following the rules.  Trusting the process.  I want to get better.

stronger

I know I have gone on and on about this whole process, and trust me, I’m as ready as you are for it to be over.  I just want to run.  Yes, I love my new workouts, and I will never again have running as my only activity.  I firmly believe that strength training, as well as yoga and Pilates, all have a place in my workout regimen, however, I want to run.

There’s just something about being outside under the big blue sky that gives me such a relief.  Ah!  Putting one foot in front of the other.  Seeing how far my legs will dare to take me.  Pushing it just one more minute, one more mile.  Not wanting, but at the same time, desperately wanting, for it to be over.

Running doesn’t feel good when you’re doing it.  Any of y’all who think it’s supposed to feel good, I’m sorry, you’ve been mislead.  Your legs and lungs ache, begging you to stop…but you don’t.  That‘s what feels so good.  The accomplishment when it is over.  The view from the top of the hill.  The complete exhaustion.  The cool breeze on your sweaty skin.  The view of the sunset.  The reflection.  Oh, yes, the reflection.  Reflecting on what you just did.  And, it’s not always a proud reflection.  I have no romanticisms about that.  I remember the bad runs just as well as the good ones.  Yet, still, you remember and you press on.

What is your favorite part of running?

How do you stay strong when you have to take a break?

 

what am i running from?

If you grew up in church, or even just in the South, you know the story of Jonah and the big fish.  All I remember is Jonah being swallowed but by a giant fish and living in his belly for a while before getting out.  Until recently, I had thought he fell off the ship.  I guess they soften things for kids, because he was actually thrown off…because he asked to be.  Yep, cast overboard of his own decision.

Doesn't this look sweet?
Doesn’t this look sweet?

Why?  Let’s go back to the beginning.  Jonah was commanded by God to go to Nineveh and preach, but guess what?  Jonah didn’t want to do that.  Nope.  He ran away from God!  What was he thinking?  Can you actually do that?  Instead of going to Nineveh(Middle East), he jumped on a ship heading the opposite direction to Tarshish(present day Spain).

jonah_map
click for source

Then, a giant storm came and Jonah asked to be “cast off” because he knew that this raging storm had come.  The rest is history, he was swallowed by a fish and then later spat out after promising he would make good on what was asked of him.

So this got me thinking.  God is not just going to let me just run away.  No.  He is going to pursue me with his relentless, passionate, absolutely overwhelming love.  (Who doesn’t want to be pursued??)

I self-sabotage.  I think I know what is the right thing for me.  I try to control my life.  What a crazy thought.  What have I been running from?  Where have I been afraid to go that I was being called?

There are things I have put off and put off.  I have, in my humanness, avoided what I knew I should or should not be doing.  Honestly, I just didn’t trust that I was capable of what he was asking of me.  So, maybe all that struggle, all that heartache, all the trying to control was me in the belly of the fish.  God was waiting for me to surface, waiting for me to let go,  waiting for me to give in and do what he has put me here to do.

What have you run from?

How did God bring you back to where he wants you?

running from

time to heal

Today, I finally started physical therapy for the nagging knee injury that started way back in January.  No, not this January, last January, as in 2013.  Yep.  I’m a procrastinator.  The honest to goodness truth is I thought I could just rest it out.  Take a break from running and it would be no more, but it just so happened I was in the middle of marathon training.  I did rest it from running.  I did the whole aqua jogging thing.  I rode the bike for hours at the gym.  You know what I didn’t do?  Strength train.  That’s the one thing I held back from my body while tearing it down to run 26.2.

healing

Back to physical therapy, from my MRI scan last month I learned that I had a medial hamstring strain and a posterior capsular sprain.  So, basically, I’ve had a pulled hamstring for over a year.  It has never healed because I haven’t properly taken care of it or had it treated.

I was so happy leaving that place because the doctor was so nice and she understood what I told her when I explained, “the back of my knee feels like a rubber band pulled taunt that gets plucked when I run.”  I have no other way to explain the feeling but that’s what it was.  She asked me a few questions about it and I was confident that she just knew.

I can’t express the relief that I am feeling right now.  I am not getting my hopes up yet.  It was only my first session and I’m not running yet, but it’s coming!  I cannot wait.  Spring is here.  I’m ready to run.

And, there’s this…maybe I need more time at the ocean 😉

salt water heals