Planning, Planning, Planning / Update

Choices are difficult

To prepare for a decision, I enjoy overwhelming my already anxiety-ridden mind by processing every single thing that could go wrong and then changing a few small details to ensure the outcome of my choosing. In other words, prepare for the worst and expect the best. Or is it the other way? Same thing. There are a few other variables to committing to this plan I’m still debating. So I’m not fully ready to say yes, I’m doing it. Not yet.

I’m in the beginning stages of formulating a training plan for the Texas Triple. Mostly I’ve decided to do a 12 week cycle and only run 4 days a week – 3 of those days will be back-to-back to simulate the triple part of this silliness. I find it funny how everyone I’ve spoken to about this endeavor is very encouraging. That’s because you’re not the one doing it! My goal is to spend the remaining days of the week focusing on strength and prehab, aka making sure I don’t get injured.

Obviously this is a preliminary plan and you know how that goes. Wild eye roll. The best of intentions have a way of traversing down a path towards hell. Major swerve to get back on course. But then it’s all sunshine and rainbows! Haha, I wish. The bright side is my summer body will be in tiptop shape!

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I ask you –

Is this still the craziest idea I’ve ever had?

Spring/summer plans?

Give me all the tips on making sure I stay injury-free!

Cultural Norms of Fitness

Badminton in Bangladesh?! Sign me up! I adore badminton. It was one of those childlike sports I truly excelled at. Of course, my only competitor was my sister and it was the only sport offered in our front yard, but hey…

Racket and shuttlecock – technical terms

For Chinese culture, fitness is considered more about socializing than what we traditionally refer to as working out.

In Columbia, Sunday’s may well be reserved for runners and cyclists to take to the streets.

In begs to be stated and cannot be overlooked, most fitness-related activities and sports in general are attended to by young men. Women may have not caught on to the pension for fitness; more likely the female population has yet to be allowed to partake in “men’s sports”. A few publications tell the story of social inequality when it comes to fitness, particularly the ability/inability for a certain race/sex/culture to gain access to standardized “fitness” facilities. However, with many gyms offering a range of price points, I think it difficult to concede there’s not a financial option for most people. That being said, I’ve not experienced this in any other place except the United States. What happens elsewhere I have no idea. I would hope gym discrimination isn’t a thing though.

From here to there

From the well known bodybuilders to athletes of other sports, fitness has served well to bring us together. Imagine the Olympics and the New York City Marathon. Global athletes come together to do what they do best and we cheer them on from the comfort of our couches and speak about them in the office like we’re their biggest fans. Because we are! Fitness unites humankind in a basic way. Athletics is now big business. Sure, we can debate all day about the sheer amount of money thrown at major league and professional athletes but what they do is extraordinary and can’t be taken lightly. Sports and fitness are entertaining, at the very least. But what about the little people?! Like me and you!

Our world has undergone so many changes from societal norms to viewpoints. It’s incredible but also very overwhelming. The people I meet share one thing: their stories. Each has a gift. What it looks like varies widely. But it’s their gift to be shared at their choosing. I count myself as one of the lucky ones to be able to have an opportunity to simply listen with my heart and eyes wide open. Fitness may look like nothing I’ve ever seen from one country to the next. But fitness unites us all in a basic way.

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I ask you –

Have you experienced a gym or sport in another country? Tell me about it!

For you travel bugs: any place you’d like to (re)visit?

Where’s my badminton players?! – I excel so beware!

Run for My Life and other things I consider

Perhaps the title can be amended: Run for My Life and other things I should (re)consider. As variety is the spice of life, so they say, running options abound, most especially when I have sworn to take a break. And, to my surprise, an email appeared in my inbox for the newest, to me, running opportunity. The Texas Triple!

Beware!

In case you’ve forgotten, I ran the Texas Double end of December and had a splendid time. Establishing a new PR most certainly counts as splendid. Never mind the pain and suffering and blisters and sore muscles for days on end. Dramatic much? The chance of me completing 2 half marathons in 2 days was a generous 60/40. Ehhh, more like 70/30. I knew I could finish it if you discount the time goals, etc. But 3? In 3 days? I don’t know what percentage to attach to such a lofty goal but it may skew in the reverse range.

A part of me thinks I’m officially, certifiably crazy. As if nothing else in my life has been this crazy and I can personally attest to the fact it has. What’s the worst that could happen? Dare you ask, Kel! I’ve already had a DNF (did not finish) and I’ve already suffered a near heat stroke. Maybe I don’t complete the Texas Triple but I can certainly try!

Granted I’m not entirely sold on this idea yet. A training cycle for this type of endeavor would be unlike anything I’ve ever done before and will take a lot of coordination (read: dedication) to make it work. The race is Memorial Day weekend. In Texas. A craps shoot at best. A disaster, or a hospital visit, at worst. But what is life if nothing at all except to be lived. Emphasis on the living side of this.

I run for doughnuts. And ice cream.

I’ll keep you updated!

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I ask you –

Ridiculous idea or go for it?

Loyal readers, please steer me to anyone who has completed this craziness before.

Anyone willing to come watch me attempt it?

There is nothing noble in not asking for help, pt 1

You don’t get extra credit by not asking for help. Profound! I wish I had lived by this many years ago – when I thought it was the right thing to do to always do it on my own, never asking for help, always anxious and frustrated I couldn’t get it all done.

I felt like a failure. Today I stand, errr sit? perch?, before you and tell you it’s ok to ask for help. More than this, it’s imperative you ask for help. Be it by seeking a coach, a trainer, a loved one, a therapist, whatever and whoever. Just ask for help.

More and more, I notice the prevalence of our human nature to refuse help. If it’s enough for my young mini-me to ask for help, then why is it wrong of me to do the same? We encourage the generations after us to seek help for their problems – yet we rarely follow our own advice. Why is this?

The inside is like a well seasoned pot – or a cup you’d find on the mess decks

Even though the aforementioned mini-me is a self-proclaimed EXPERT at everything, there is zero expectation to live up to the hype. But not beating ourselves up is much more difficult. I know I’m right.

Day after day, night after night, I confess the many benefits of personal training. I tell my story and listen to theirs. And I remind them I didn’t find my own wellness until I sought help. Ultimately, you never know what you can do until you ask. As a member is always telling me, “You don’t know what you don’t know.” And I know asking for help doesn’t make me weak.

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I ask you –

Do you have a problem asking for help?

Often times, help is free. The only cost is commitment. What is your barrier to asking?

Have you ever asked for help for something huge in your life?

Priority vs Afterthought

Priority uno

For all I write, I’ve been struggling with this topic because it’s not easy to identify how this will be received. Not by the reader, but by the psyche. Well known: we tend to put others first and forget our own goals. Not so well known: which group do you fall into? The answer is not so simple.

If I asked you where you stand on a particular point or what your belief systems are, you could most likely answer quite easily. But if I asked you to pick between reaching your personal goals and doing something you love (provided they are different) you might become confrontational or even withdrawn.

This here is where it gets tricky. Relationships with people you love shouldn’t create a feeling of being the afterthought versus a priority. If one person is receiving the attention, joy, and emotional nurturing, but the other either isn’t or perceives they aren’t, then resentment develops. Each party must acknowledge what the other needs in order to continue.

Health and fitness are like this, too. Squint your eyes – you’ll see it. By making your health goals an afterthought, your mind and body don’t receive what is necessary to complete the changes sought. It’s like putting diesel fuel in a gasoline-powered engine. All fuels aren’t created equally. Just because it says “fuel” doesn’t mean it is the right kind. There’s something specific needed for each type of engine.

Hot car

What kind of engine do you drive? Not literally. Are you in need of an upgrade, but don’t know if you’re ready? The only thing stopping you is you. Make your goals the priority instead of pushing them to the back burner. Let it be known what you need emotionally, physically, and spiritually. We can’t expect others to read our minds; however, if they’re clue’d in, they’ll notice.

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I ask you –

What fuels your engine?

How often do you prioritize yourself?

Was the squinting I mentioned really necessary? Did you get it?

20/20

I can’t stop laughing at the jokes about people wishing Barbara Walters would host the New Year’s Eve ball drop in Times Square because then she’d say “And this is 2020” or something to that effect. Puns are my favorite.

*giggle*

Since the fitness industry can feel like it revolves around capitalizing on the human population’s desire to commit to resolutions and those resolutions typically happen on New Years Day and most, if not all, Mondays, it would be wrong of me to tell you this isn’t really my favorite time of year. But it’s really not. The road to hell is paved with good intentions. I believe each and every person who walks into the gym January 1st has the very best intention to get their health in order, to make the steps it takes to change their life, and to reach all the goals they’ve set. I truly believe it. But if I could change one thing, it would be to inspire them to change their life before it gets to this point. Before another Monday sneaks up on us. Before another decade arrives. Before they’re at the point of no return. As I am a realist yet also a dreamer, this is conflicting.

However, before you discount my ramblings as sheer cynicism, please remember I believe in you. I believe you can do this without me, but if you need help, I’m with you on your journey. My faith is unwavering. My words are upbeat and kind. I will cry and laugh with you. Occasionally, I’ll even be stern with you. Because I believe you can do this.

“This” doesn’t always refer to joining a gym. I believe you can do anything. Read it again and yell it out loud for those talking in the back. I BELIEVE YOU CAN DO ANYTHING! Anything! You want to be a master sculptor? Do it! You want to complete an Ironman? Go for it! Time for a job change? (Are you a personal trainer? Call me!) 2020 is a time for celebration because it just is. Because why not?! And 2020 looks really cool when you write it so I think the reason speaks for itself.

Told ya!

My goals: peak performance, write, and do hard things. Not necessarily in any order. More like circular goals. Nonetheless, the old ways aren’t working – time to try something new.

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I ask you –

What are your resolutions?

If you don’t believe in resolutions, tell me something you plan to do this year.

What year was your best? (physical best, most accomplishments, etc.)

Goals of the Superstitious Variety

Page Turner

After chatting with some pretty amazing trainers (courtesy of Anytime Fitness, of course) on the topic post-race season goals, I mentioned wanting to really focus on nutrition. With a propensity to not eat enough, I knew I would need a plan that encourages me to eat and build muscle.

So a new goal was born! Keto helped me regain confidence in my body after baby, but I know I can do more. I have a short torso and long legs. I know this means nothing to you. But every woman knows a postpartum body is much different than anything before. Things change. Add breastfeeding to that and whoa! In an attempt to be transparent (I hate that word, can we just say tell the truth?!), I believe some may think I’m training for a competition. To be wildly clear, I am definitely not. But I am fascinated about enticing my body to respond in that way.

The road sign of my life

Like everything, I’ll keep you all updated right here on this journey of lean body mass. So step aside naysayers! The only stage I’m rocking is the comedy club in my head!

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I ask you –

Goals? New or old?

Thoughts on competitive fitness?

Do you consider yourself superstitious?