Monday, February 25, 2013

Day #26-The power of what you think

It's amazing and it's happened to me a few times, although I think I forget about it each race. "I'm going to run x pace." Even if I hope for a faster pace, something happens where that's EXACTLY what I do. I do what, in my gut, I "know" I will do.  This time, "I'm not racing, I'm using this as a training run." How could my body end up doing anything but that?? Of course, I knew I had IT band issues and that would factor in, but I was (perhaps not so secretly) hoping it would go away for this one race.

(I have a REALLY long ponytail, even when braided, apparently).

The weather was not optimal (raining, pretty windy), but the course was fair-just a few rollers. I wasn't feeling particularly "sparkly" at the beginning or before the race (husband/coach warned me I wouldn't-speed work during the week) but I felt like I could hold on out of sheer athletic ability. My IT band had other plans. Around mile 9 I developed the classic symptoms-tightness along the IT, knee giving out. When I started to take walking breaks I knew it was over, and all I could do was hold on to keep what was to do what I had originally planned- marathon pace. I know I shouldn't be disappointed-I wasn't going for a PR, but I can't help it.

Here's the rub: I haven't been doing core work, not really. Even though I know it's a big source of my IT band problems. So really, how can I be surprised that this happened? I haven't given my all.

I think you know, truly, when you've thrown absolutely everything you have at a goal-and I haven't, yet. Not truly. I'm thinking of this is my last-chance smackdown. If I go down (i.e. don't reach my goal) it's not going to be because I didn't try-and somehow that's scarier than NOT trying. What if I give my all and it's "not good enough".  

Fear faced over this weekend? Being really, truly honest with myself.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Day #25-I've been slacking a little

Time to get back to it! These past few days I've been trying (very hard) to let go of worry. Worry is something we think we need. We're comforted by it. It's a habit that's hard to let go of (even though it's not good for us).  Like many, I've taken worry to be a best friend, a confidant. A way to convince myself I'm being proactive, analyzing every eventuality and convincing myself that was helping.

It doesn't. Only concrete ACTIONS actually do. Surprisingly, this is a very very hard trait to let go of and not having that fear can actually leave you feeling a little naked. And not the fun kind either. More like the I'm-in-front-of-the-class-giving-a-speech-naked. Oddly enough, this nakedness leaves me without any excuses not to move forward, in every sense.

I have a race this weekend- a half marathon which is not a huge deal, in and of itself for me-it's not the main goal, but the 50 mph winds are (haha) taking the winds out of my running sails at the moment. If I am able to compete, it will have to be a test of mental toughness. If the race is cancelled, then it will be a long run. A test of  a "go-with-the-flowness" and lack of control.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Day #24 Reflection is good

Sometimes it's good to take a look at where you and where you've come from. In just a few weeks I've done things that I never thought I would do and I've delved into subjects/things from which I would normally hide. (Still feelin' a little rock climbing high from Sunday).

Ummm, no, that's not me. But you get the idea.

Today: No avoidance.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Day #23 Sometimes Being Stubborn IS a Good Thing

2nd time rock climbing-success! I wasn't on a giant wall, but I got all the way to the top!

(See miniscule wall at the farrr back)
It took several tries, but I got there and went up twice! I was all gung-ho allllll week, like yeah, I'm going to do this! Then when I got there, I thought ohhhhh no I'm not! I wonder if running to Chelsea Piers put me in  a good place since running is where I'm more confident already. I definitely got a rush from achieving a goal (beating fear of heights). I wish I had more money, because I would definitely go back every week! I actually wanted to call my mother and be like SO THERE. Clearly maturity issues 1) I wanted to call my mother about this 2) I wanted to say that to her. Yup, very mature.

A great day in that I got my recovery run in after a long run yesterday (yay!) and met a previous goal today.

In reaching these goals I've spent a bit of money (not crazy, but a bit). Now I'm wondering-why is it so hard for me NOT to spend money every day? Granted, the last time I bought something was about 4 months ago...hmmm. Budgeting is HARD. How can I reach my goals while not just turning this 30 days into some sort of bucket list??

I'm going to try again to donate blood tomorrow and also to find another Toastmasters group to join-trying to fit this all in is hard-but too easy to make excuses to keep my "safe" routine.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Day #22-Social gatherings...

I went to a wedding today where I swear, I knew almost EVERYONE. In a good way, this is a social circle in which I should be super duper comfortable. However, I noticed how little I have been interacting lately-hiding way is SO much easier (see below).

I just felt stiff and awkward and not at all like I fit in. Which is weird. Because I do (I think). Also, I haven't danced in a long time and feel like a bit of a jackass (I remember when I used to swing dance allll the time!) Good to be aware of it and things to think about. Also something to work towards (especially over the next few days: being aware-no burying feelings. THAT is scary.

Can you overlap goals on 30 days? Is that allowed? lol! I feel like I've fallen off my own bandwagon and not sure if that's possible.

My husband and I DID go out in our wedding clothes to see a VERY bad movie. The scale of suck is not big enough for how bad A Good Day To Die Hard was. Oof.

But we looked snazzy.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Day #21 Being the center of attention-or being ignored

As a chronic social misfit, I'm not quite sure which one is worse. I was the cheerleader that never fit in, the track captain that was too shy to talk to everyone. Social anxiety manifests itself in strange ways.

Today my husband I will go out in our wedding finery (i.e. dress and suit) and bar hop! Then off to a sure to be very, very bad movie. Maybe someone WILL notice. It's NYC, maybe no one will give a shit. Who knows. The adventure is in having fun and not quite knowing.

Photos to follow...

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Day #20-Doing SOMETHING

Oddly frustrated with my inability to find volunteering opportunities that I can actually get to with my unpredictable work schedule-it's hard to commit to a certain day each week at the moment, and that's a bit frustrating.

I decided though, instead of just giving up, to find a way to do SOMETHING, even if it's just donating blood. Hopefully, that can help and it still counts? I haven't donated blood in a looong time. This isn't enough, though, I can feel it. I need to do more-feeling edgy.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Day #19 When your list turns from things you fear into just crazy shit

Ugh...that means doing responsible things instead of being a fighter pilot for a day. Like making a doctor's appointment for the thyroid problem you KNOW you have. Ugh.....and other ones. Not fun. Facing your fears doesn't always result in cool pictures.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Day #18 Try, Try Again

I wasn't totally successful at my attempt at rock climbing yesterday and I still haven't done my volunteering yet, but I realized that I have an opportunity that was SO obviously close to home!  I have friends at the American Cancer Society that I can reach out to (and did this a.m.) to volunteer at Hope Lodge. Being near people that I don't know and who could need my help scares me! It makes me feel oddly vulnerable and in a position of responsibility.

 I also reached out to HR at my office to see if we can get a program of people to be CPR/AED certified (just makes sense, to me). After being on a plane where someone had a real medical emergency and I felt totally helpless because I couldn't offer ANY assistance-I'm hoping getting re-certified could change that.

Goals today including NOT giving up. 

I'm very tired today (actually was yesterday too). Have to remember to keep that in check.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Day #17 Leg, leg, arm, arm.

Rock climbing class! Private lesson (cha-ching) but needed the one-on-one attention (hand-holding?) Met my instructor at Chelsea Piers, who was super nice and sensed my nerves and my own internal story about how 7 year olds were passing me (no fear, these kids!). I didn't get belay certified, but close. I also didn't climb all the way to the top, but I got almost half-way there. Nerves got the best of me, unfortunately.
But at least I started! This is a battle in my 30 days that I'm constantly trying to fight: Lack of success (or complete success, in my mind) is NOT failure. Thanks to someone else, I had the courage to at least start. Interestingly, I found myself "freezing" on the wall, just like I do with downhill cycling and very unlike my experience with snowboarding. Oddly enough, I think snowboarding has the highest chance of injury and belaying, the least. Weird. I signed up for a class next week, but damn, this stuff isn't cheap. I at least want to improve, even if I don't get all the way to the top.

(proof I actually climbed-that's my giant foot).

On a good note, yesterday I reached out to a high school friend that I haven't really spoken to since her wedding last year to ask advice about this subject. Social anxiety bites the big one, I think.

Next goal: Learning how to play chess. The husband tells me he'll help me learn, but I'm thinking learning anything from the husband is probably not a good thing....

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Day #16

Procrastination...avoidance...i'm REALLY REALLY REALLY good at avoiding things. Epically good, in fact. So today's goal is to tackle those little things I actually DO want to do (send that card, mail that gift, clean up) that I tend to avoid because I just get a wee bit overwhelmed...I don't have to do EVERYTHING in order to do SOME thing. This is logical, I know. Also hard to reconcile.

Day #15

Won't lie,  I skipped day #15, kind of. Not intentionally, although well, actually. Maybe I didn't. I feel like i'm inching closer to volunteering in a way that I think might help me (ironically) just as much as it helps other people. Still working up the nerve though.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Day #14-A mixed bag

I signed up for a rock climbing lesson this weekend-as in, I put my credit card in. ACCHHHHHHH. That kinda makes it real.

Found out a favorite author is coming to my neighborhood in March. How COOL is that. I've tweeted her. Hopefully she doesn't think I'm completely weird (or maybe just a little? hmmm). I feel like I need more goals today, but I don't quite know what they are. Probably will do a second post once I figure this out.

First day back to work after mini-vaca sucks, btw.

Day #13-Somedays keeping calm is its own win

I stress. A LOT. Can you tell (do you care? HA). So for me, this day was just about traveling alone (done before) and allowing myself to upgrade to economy plus (yes, that $49 was totally worth the leg room). And adjusting back to work/life. Sometimes the change is just hard for me. I get into a groove and coming back into my routine is hard. And you know what? It's ok to order from while taking a taxi back home so that food will be there when you get home and you don't have to (try to) cook. The world will not end if you treat yourself.

Day #12-Not doing it all will not result in the world exploding

I was so psyched about going snowboarding (and the hubs was proud I did it too) that I really wanted to go again the next day. To be honest? I was tiiiiired. I wanted to run in the morning (hill repeats-which I did) and then snowboard but I realized it was too much to expect of my body on that day. I had a little bit of mini-failure fear, but I had to sit back and enjoy spending time with friends. By the way? They were ALSO TIRED. And have been snowboarding/skiing for years. Bonus? I had the best reaction/non-reaction to altitude and they were actually surprised it bothered me as little as it did.

Lesson learned? Sometimes it's ok to just CHILL. (Still working on that one).

View from the hills:

Day #11-Suck it, downhill fear.

Snowboarding!! I've never gone skiing or anything like that. Sledding was my closest resume experience. I feel I have to preface this: I am terrified of heights (or so I thought??) Actually, I am terrified of cycling downhill. I see one of these:
And I want to die. Literally. Complete and utter panic attack. Dry mouth, nausea, probably stars. When I get to the bottom of the hill I can actually breath again. (If you've never had a panic attack, I don't recommend, they aren't fun).

What I was surprised at (besides the number of times I fell down) was that I was NOT afraid of the downhill while snowboarding. I was more frustrated with my inability to turn smoothly and create those cool s-curves that you see on TV (or that I saw the 3-year old kids doing while they passed me). My goal was to get down the hill (THAT was a bunny slope?!!) falling as little as possible. Well, the first time I'm pretty sure I fell every two feet and didn't realize this was equivalent to doing squats for 4 hours. But I DID it. And I loved the view from the gondola/lift.

Yes, this is how you start (magic carpet without any ironic drug references).

A note to friends who told me I should never do this because of my fear of heights (well-intentioned I am sure) as well as to myself for enabling/perpetuating this vision of me and believing it: SHOVE IT. How long did I put this off because I had created this belief/allowed others to create it that I couldn't handle it? F* that.

I may not be good (ok, definitely not good) but I even went up on the ski lift and got off with my board and floated (mostly) smoothly off (thanks instructor).

Views like this are what you get when you start to conquer your fears:

The funny part? I will probably do it again! I want to get better at it. More lessons for sure. And more time on the bunny slope ;-)

Day #10

Day #10 isn't a huge deal...ok, I need to stop saying that. I have a TERRIBLE sense of direction. I mean, bad bad bad. I could probably get lost in my hometown and in my neighborhood now. Doing my long run in Telluride frightened me for a few reasons:

1) location. I had no idea where I was going and the maps we had were AWFUL. This stresses me out to no end.

2) Altitude. I had never run at this altitude-would my head implode? No really. I wasn't sure if I would last for 10 minutes.

3) Running with someone that I know, but never ran with. How would this work? Would she leave me in the dust? She is used to altitude and I was not. And she's an ultra runner. Intimidating.

Turns out, it's VERY hard to get lost in Telluride given its size. It's a teeny town. And yeah, we meandered but it was ok (and got yelled at by cross country skiers)! I didn't get 20 miles in, but I got 14, which my husband/coach says is ok because of the altitude. I was out there for a long time, being cautious withe the altitude.

Lesson learned. Going out of the comfort zone can result in some gorgeous views (even when you slip on ice and fall on your butt):

Day #9

This is a bit retro-active, so I may forget precisely what I did each day!

Goal: Keep calm when things don't go quite well/schedule is adjusted

Traveled to Colorado and a woman in our shuttle van took my luggage. My unique, unless you're a triathlete you're probably not taking this home with you luggage. I kept calm though, since earlier in the day a woman on our plane had collapsed and our plane had to be diverted so she could be taken off. Perspective maybe? For some reason I was very relaxed.  I mean, what was I going to do? We went to get delicious baked goods in Telluride while we waited.

Would YOU take this bag? No. Why she didn't even notice that she took it? Beyond me.


Friday, February 1, 2013

Day #8

Emailed Toastmasters yesterday! I will be attending my first meeting with a group on February 14th. Very very VERY nervous. This is like a book report. Except I'm an adult (sort of). Very proud of myself for at least reaching out to set this up.

A couple of my goals have had small setbacks-although I didn't find a cooking class I DID make my first omelet by accident yesterday! I know. Somehow I meant to make scrambled but somehow I left the stove for a moment and it turned into a an omelet-it's a win or something, right?

(not mine, but you get the idea). Gourmet chef RIGHT HERE.

Today I think my goal is to revisit another volunteering opportunity and then something else-gotta keep up the streak!! Perhaps the rock climbing at Chelsea Piers (oh, GOD).

This makes me wanna die even MORE than public speaking. I may need a friend on this one.