Day ??? Yes, it’s been a while. Life has been happening.

13 Aug

It’s been about four months since I last posted, and it’s a sticky note on my fridge that inspired me to update the blog.

“…suffering produces perseverance; perseverance produces character; and character produces hope. And hope does not disappoint…” Romans 3:5

Before even logging on, I could remember the last blog post I started, and never published. It was for the week of April 7.  I had run a 10k in support of a young girl, Calle, who was battling a courageous fight but slowly losing her life to a brain tumor.  This road race encompassed a 5k run and walk. It was something everyone could participate in, and thousands came out to support one child. This is a child that brought together an entire community, one town showing love and support for Calle and her family.  Never have I witnessed such a strong network of true love and support. It began in Norwell and quickly spread.  I never met Calle, but understand her strength and grace blessed so many.  Calle lost her battle this summer, and leaves behind a beautiful legacy and a community united forever.

I never posted a blog that week because a few days later I was cheering on thousands of runners at mile 26 of the Boston Marathon. In 12 seconds, my life was turned upside down.  After being evacuated from my apartment with only the clothes on my back, one of the first purchases I made was a pair of running sneakers. Then I ran. I ran every day for a week. I wasn’t sleeping and was barely eating, yet I ran hard.  I ran, and I ran some more.  It was literally the only thing I could control. It made sense when I couldn’t make sense of anything else.

As time marched on, I faced additional personal and professional struggles. It became a perfect storm of mental and emotional struggle. Life was testing me in a way that pushed me to my limits. I was forced to put one foot in front of the other, see the good in the bad, and keep the faith that a greater meaning was behind it all.  Struggle was swimming through me, greeting me each morning and lingering during each sleepless night.  It was hope, that small, tiny sliver of hope that got me through each day.  Hope in a brighter tomorrow and faith that that I am stronger than my struggles.

And here I am, a stronger person and more self-aware. I am most grateful for the friends that make me smile through the tears, the family that opens their arms and hearts from afar, and my running sneakers that offer me an outlet to find clarity and peace.

Four months have passed and a lot has happened. But fitness and the #sweatlife continues.  With sore legs from this weekend’s Falmouth road race, I laced up the sneakers and let out some steam in a kickboxing class. Exercise is where I lose myself. I do it for health of course, but more so because it’s my “zen”. Dripping in sweat, pounding on a heavy bag, throwing around medicine balls, and jumping rope is my therapy.   I feel whole, complete, and centered.

Life is full of wild ups and downs. It always will be. Learning to ride the waves is half battle.

august

Day 85 – 92: Run, spin, weights, repeat.

6 Apr

Day 85:  A run around the Charles.  It was a beautiful day to be out and about, and a 4 mile run was a great way to start the day.

Day 86: Earning the candy.  I was home for Easter, and naturally attempted to get anyone to workout with me. No takers, per usual, so I took off on a lovely 4.5 mile run.  When I returned, Jarret was finishing up cleaning his car, so I pleaded to have him workout with me.  I shouldn’t even honor his efforts as a workout nor should I blog about it because he did 4 push ups. That’s right, only FOUR pushups.  Baby steps.

day 86

Day 87: Oh, well this was a really fun day. I won’t relive it, as I’m over it.  However, it was one of those days that makes you say “WHY”, almost every hour.  And it was a Monday, so that was awesome.  In any case, I looked forward to my evening kettle bell class.  It was my bright light of the day since I knew I would work out my aggression. Or so I thought. After hauling over to the gym in the pouring rain, I stood at the desk soaking wet as they told me the class had just been cancelled.  After a few choice words in my head, I jumped on the elliptical for a bit and just had to call it a day.

Day 88: Squeeze. Working muscles I didn’t know I had at Life in Synergy.  It’s been a while since I’ve taken these classes, and boy do you feel the burn.  This is the only workout I do where I don’t sweat yet am still in excruciating pain.  The theory behind the movements is to do small exercises that get at the muscles we tend to forget about on a daily basis while living. It’s crazy hard.

Day 89: Spin class. Need I say more?

Day 90: Four days after today’s workout, I’m still sore.  This was a fun/funny workout.  I ripped out a full body weight  workout from Women’s Health and decided to give it a while. Two co-workers joined the fun as we took over some real estate in the gym and did our thing.  I really need to start incorporating weights, and this was a great way to throw them in there. There were 10 different exercises that you do for a minute each. (We did two rounds.)  Full of compound workouts, we were hitting anything and everything.  Lunges combined with curls and presses, t-pushups, spiderman plank leg extensions, sumo squat while rotating weights, and more.

Day 91: Friday spin class. My. Legs. Are. Fried.

Day 92:  K10, new sneakers, and some massive wind. That made for a fun run/walk.  Oh spring, where ARE you?!

Day 72-84: Still here, still working out.

30 Mar

I’ve been lacking on the blogging, but not the workouts!  Seeing as a busy schedule creates a challenge in posting daily, I’m making another slight adjustment to this whole 365 days of sweat situation.  I’ll be posting once a week to provide a quick round-up of workouts.  Although, as you can tell, this post will cover two weeks worth.

Day 72:  I was in a running mood, so I headed out for a jaunt around the river. I thought I would do a few miles, and ended up doing about 5.  I love those runs.  It was pretty quiet out there, I’m guessing because it was St. Patrick’s Day and people were more interested in beer than running.  Although, I was thrown for a loop when I ran past a woman taking her Christmas tree out of her house. Yes. That was happening.   Great day for a run.
day 72

Day 73:  Kettlebell class at work.  This was a new one for me, and I was sore before I even left the gym.  I loved it!

Day 74: HIIT on the elliptical.  You get this by now 🙂

Day 75:  Back to boot camp. Brutal but oh so necessary.  I realized during this class that I haven’t been pushing myself nearly  hard enough on my own.  I was definitely pushed beyond my comfort zone in this class, which is important if you want to make any sort of progress.  #doingwork

Day 76: So sore after boot camp so it was another HIIT session on the elliptical.

Day 77: Friday spin day!  Love this class.  I’m making this a Friday ritual.

Day 78: My legs were fried after this week, so on tap for today was a nice long walk with K10.  It was freezing and city was crazy windy. So obviously our walk landed us into a Starbucks…

Day 79:  Running for fun.  I jumped on board a Boston training run with “he who shall not be named” (nope, no tights today). It was a tough run for me, but a good run.  Turns out that I ended up doing 10 miles at a faster pace than I usually do.  As the other one went on for another 30 minutes at race pace, I passed out the floor to recover. I didn’t move for about 45 minutes. Good times.

Day 80: I was fried today, so this was a complete rest day.

Day 81: You’re going to think I’m crazy with this one.  More running!  Boston is fast approaching and the man in tights wanted to run the hills of the course before race day. Soooo hills we shall do! Since I live basically on the finish line, it’s easy to run the course from here.  We hopped on the T, headed to Woodland, and ran about 6ish miles back into town so he could hit the hills. I hadn’t run them since my last Boston, 3 years ago, so it was “fun” to do that part of the course.  It weirdly makes me want to run it again….but then I remind myself that the hills on fresh legs is MUCH different from running them after the 19 miles of the course that precede them.

Day 82:  Wednesday boot camp.  Brutal as usual but I love it.

Day 83:  I’m going to be real honest about today.  You know those girls that read magazines while “exercising” on an elliptical or a bike or walking on a treadmill?  Yup, that was me…sans the magazine. I forgot my sports bra but still wanted to move, so I wore my gym clothes, hit the elliptical and literally tried not to sweat. Sounds ridiculous, I know.  It was actually good – 30 minutes to flush out the legs.

Day 84: Friday spin day. I rode the bike like a boss.  I had a plan to kill it in class and left everything on the bike. I don’t think I’ve ever pushed myself this hard in spin. It was felt all sorts of good.  The quads are feeling it, for sure.

Day 71: I run for the….

16 Mar

Beer. Obviously. Oh, and for the race shirts.

Today’s 5k was great in so many ways.  A top 10 list sounds like a good idea.  And yes, photos are included at the end 🙂

10. It was the annual St. Patrick’s Day race down in Marshfield.  Anything with a St. Patty’s day theme will be fun, even running.
9. It gives me a reason to pull out my shamrock running  capris. Yeah, they’re pretty sweet.
8.  Men, women, children, and strollers litter the race pack.  It’s great to see so many healthy people! You know 99.9% are running for the post-race beer…the other .1% are children.
7. The sun was SHINING!
6. Beer awaits us at the end of the race. Guinness for health! Or so I’m told….
5. Bagpipes. Enough said.
4. My aunt’s ankle healed enough to run the 5K. It’s a good thing she didn’t do Hyannis so that she could run hard and win this race.
3.  We get to hang with her “court dogs”. They are usually 2 beers in by the time we finish. They are fast. I think it’s because they want the first beer and not because they are trained to chase bad people.
2. I can pretend I’m Irish.
1. And the NUMBER ONE reason why this was a great race….
It was CJ’s first ever 5K!!!  SO EXCITING!  She ran hard and strong and most importantly, had fun! She dodged the crowds like pac man, zipping in and out to get ahead. I think at one point I saw her leap over a stroller while high fiving a child. Yes, she’s a beast.

Great day and looking forward to the next!

photo 1

CJ, pre-race and ready to rock!

photo 2

Race regulars. Kind of a big deal.

photo 3

Fun and festive. I know, the shamrock pants are awesome.

Day 70: Friday Spinday

15 Mar

Fridays are turning into spin day, which is great!  The instructor during the Friday lunchtime spin class is fantastic, and it is a great way to end the week and start the weekend.  One 45 minute class left me exhausted and of course, dripping in sweat.  There’s really not much more I can say on that.

Day 69: Uneventful elliptical

14 Mar

I’m really making an effort do to the high intensity interval cardio workouts (hiit) three times a week.  Today, I grabbed my co-worker and we jumped on the ellipticals at lunchtime.  I think I had more fun catching up with her than actually working out. Trying to talk while pushing yourself to breathless is quite the challenge.

Day 68: Back to bootcamp

13 Mar

I was more than excited to sign up for a group ex class at work, now that I can do full body workouts.  20 seconds into the warm-up, it was apparent that my hiatus had taken a toll.  I know it’s not a race or a competition, but as we warmed up around the track, the “nice easy warm up” instruction felt like a sprint and a work out in and of itself.  It’s all good though, this is why we workout, right?  After an hour of all sorts of body weight, plyometric, heart pumping intervals, I was dripping in sweat.  It felt amazing.  But how do the college students manage to still look like fresh daisies after a workout like that? I can’t figure it out…