Random Day, part 36

In typical Running On Fumes fashion, here are several random thoughts to start your morning:

Many years ago, before I joined the Navy, my best friend and I stumbled – quite possibly literally – into a venue in Ft. Worth. As several mullet-bedazzled men in cutoff jean shorts and fanny packs took the stage, we were appalled. Our lives were forever changed. Introducing The Mullet Boyz! 3 intentional concerts later, any chance I have to see them I take. Like rock music and cowbell? I encourage you to visit us in Texas to see The Mullet Boyz! Sorry, they don’t play anywhere else. I tried to get them to come to Florida once. No dice.

A night of insanity – and so much fun!

Recently I discovered my blog audience includes one of my Anytime Fitness bosses. Guess I shouldn’t have made all those jokes. Though very taken aback, I am also secretly, not so secretly, proud and amazed. But I’m upset with myself because I’ve never given them the credit they are due. It was because of them I received the huge opportunity to write this blog. They hired me upon my return to Texas almost a year ago and have been nothing short of encouraging and accommodating. As a family running a family business with many other projects being run simultaneously, I can’t imagine how lively their holiday gatherings must get! And they’re originally from “up North” so the colorful language and accent are, by far, my favorite! We get along well. If you ever have a chance to do business or work for anyone in the Destefano family, please acknowledge you are a part of their family. And make sure you laugh at their jokes – up North and all.

Clean clothes, clean bear

Meet Mister Bear. Pronounced “Mist-uh Bay-yuh”. He’s been a staple of our household for approximately 4 years. Like a loyal teddy bear, he sleeps with us, occasionally eats dinner with us, and has his very own wardrobe which consists of “sleeping panties and a t-shirt”. Yes, I know he has a male prefix; I don’t make the rules around here. Clearly. You see, Mister Bear is my Munchkin’s lovey. In case you haven’t figured that out. And when she’s not home, it’s my job to wash his clothes and make sure he is happy. He’s an integral part of this family. …one time, I forgot to bring him on our road trip. Cue the mom tears. I felt so bad. My mini was devastated and the look of ‘HOW COULD YOU?!’ still haunt me. Not even joking right now. We’ve all only barely recovered from such a traumatic experience.

Training. I think I was supposed to start last week. Ooops. What with the snow and some other things to deal with, my plan is still in progress. Technically, I’m not late. Yet. I’m hashing out a few more small details then I’ll get started. If you negate the 4 hours I was driving each day, theoretically I should have all this extra time to run, right? But much like not paying for a coffee each day and putting that money into savings, something always comes up to spend it on instead. Time is the exact same way. I tell myself I’ll get up early and do something smart, but what really happens is I play gummies for another hour and get nothing done. Time management trickery.

I’ll keep you posted on the continuation of my sh*t show!

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I ask you –

Favorite obscure artists/band?

Have you ever worked in a family business? Perhaps you run your own business?

Tell me you also had a lovey. Bonus points if you still have him/her/it!

Season of Sickness

Seems I had it coming. It was bound to happen. Your body can only stand being coughed on so many times before it becomes overwhelmed and can’t fight all the germs it comes into contact with. Everyone in our family has had whatever this is on an alternating basis for weeks. From yucky, runny noses to the open-mouthed, deep in the chest cough my mini human shares so willingly with me. Ewwww. It’s just no wonder!

Needy child, not pictured

But being the stubborn woman I am, I fought it tooth and nail. And with a minuscule amount of DayQuil because I fall asleep after taking anything. There was a full 24 hours where my voice toggled between a pubescent boy and a frog’s croak. I think everyone around me enjoyed this immensely. Blessed silence! And I had the most insane dreams – that’s for another day.

It seems we’ve all survived. The parents are cured, the husband isn’t milking it for all it’s worth anymore, and the munchkin only wants medicine if it includes honey. Me? Oh, I’m fine. A mother’s work is never done. All I got was a poor pitiful look and the request for more snacks. I swear I could be on my death bed and someone would still find me to ask for a da*n snack! I continued to tip-toe around the house careful not to disturb anyone’s slumber (because…sick), go to work, and field a litany of phone calls (sans voice). Where’s my celebratory snack?!?!

For the love of all that’s holy, please just wash your hands

With this world succumbing to the flu, coronavirus, and everything else, the simplest task does the most to prevent illness. Wanna guess what it is? Wash your hands. That’s all there is to it. Wash your hands. Every time I shake someone’s hand or touch a piece of equipment, the amount of grossness I encounter disgusts me. Surprisingly your skin doesn’t wash off. So if that’s your excuse not to wash your hands, consider this myth debunked. Wash your hands, please! Use soap and scrub under your fingernails and between your fingers. Sing happy birthday to yourself. Just do it!

End of this PSA. Lastly, don’t drink bleach, you idiots. Why are we still having to tell people not to do this? Morons.

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I ask you –

Do you skip washing your hands? – please don’t tell me if you do; I’m already appalled

Did you know hand sanitizer does not double as hand washing? – wash your da*n hands!

Tell me the other stupid things you’ve seen/heard suggested to prevent illness.

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?

How to be Brave and Courageous!

Don’t ask me. I have zero ideas how to accomplish this.

But I know someone who tells me how brave I am each time we visit. She reminds me I can do hard things, how growth is obtainable, and that finding myself may mean a loss of others who don’t want to see me succeed. It stings. Take it from me: I’m no expert at this life stuff. I tend to find people who need rescuing and when they’ve gotten what they needed they disappear. And it sucks.

There’s this life cycle we transcend which may last for days, weeks, months. It’s possible to become complacent or unaware, even unwilling, to make a change. I’m absolutely, one hundred percent willing and aware. But one person’s timeline doth not a decision make. Humor makes me more approachable, or so I’m told. Back to bravery and courage though. Doing hard things looks different for every human. We’re not immune to life. There is no fast pass or skipping ahead in line. These so-called “hard things” arrive in our life in many forms. The patterns of gray and shades of black and white can be discernible to those looking in, but not necessarily the one with the microscope. Best be careful what instructions are given.

My spirit animal

My mini and I read a book titled Be Brave, Little Tiger by Margaret Wise Brown. It has a fun, catchy song the little tiger sings to entice himself to be brave. I often overhear Munchkin singing it to herself; truth be told, I catch myself humming along randomly, too. But it’s hard to be convincing when all you have is a children’s song as the soundtrack to something much more in depth. Bravery and courage are abstract. So how do I coach my internal narrative through a complicated process like this?

First, I write notes to myself. Second, I put them in all the places. Lastly, I close my eyes and repeat these words as many times as it takes to FEEL them. If you don’t have a cheerleader or your inner coach is a bit on the negative side or maybe your coach ditched you for greener pastures, be louder than anything standing in your way.

Sticky notes of all colors

Go forth and BE BRAVE!

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I ask you –

Is there a childhood book that stands out in your mind as a favorite? – anything Amelia Bedelia

Do you consider someone in your life to be overly brave and courageous?

Advice for anyone seeking bravery and courage. Suggestions are welcomed.

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?

Behold! + Danger Signs

Alas, the suck has continued. Who knew. Perhaps I counted myself lucky a few too many times before because after the past few days, I should reconsider.

As bruises are now appearing and the aftermath awaits in my garage for professional attention, my 20/20 (jokes) vision has shown me, once again, I ignored all the signs. 1) when it took almost 5 hours for me to get home the night before due to road closures attributed to flooding. 2) when the roads were progressively getting worse and the forecast called for inches of snow and ice. 3) and finally – when it was too late.

As my car began spin 1 of 3, I not only felt but saw the relationship some of my choices have in common with the out of control feeling I was experiencing. I repeated out loud for the universe to hear me “We’re ok” as my car slammed against and finally bounced off the hard objects it encountered. Ice and snow are so beautiful from the safe confines of a warm home. Not so much when your car decides to ice skate. Eventually I ended up facing the wrong direction in the middle of a major highway; my car, a guardrail, and another car being the only casualties. Seems I go all in. In essence, ‘this is why’ doing the right thing isn’t always right! (I won’t be including wreckage photos for those of you who love that stuff. It makes my heart sad.)

I make light of the situation in the only way I know how: with loads of humor. Truthfully, it was a scary a** experience and one I never hope to repeat. I’m incredibly thankful my mini-me wasn’t with me and no one was hurt. The vehicle I love so much can be replaced, but our lives cannot. Perhaps this was just another example of priorities and how every attempt to get mine together doesn’t pay off immediately. It does eventually, though, right? RIGHT? It would be too simple to say I was distracted, I was driving too fast, etc. but I was doing everything right. Sometimes when you’re doing everything right, your car decides to go left. As I sobbed my heart out the next day – first day shock is for real – the fixer in me appeared. For once, I didn’t try to establish a boundary and back away from that tendency because taking action is my way of coping. I came up with a plan. I was ready to attack! Now…we wait. What do you mean insurance adjusters need time off?! The waiting game is my demise.

How can I translate this to the fitness industry and the swarm of New Years resolutionists I encounter? No se. Maybe all I can say is you will experience setbacks and tribulations. There will be days, even weeks, where nothing is going right. You’ll sob your eyes out in an empty parking lot while wondering why is everything going so wrong. You’ll wish for things that may never come. And then you’ll limp your way home, feeling sorry for yourself, and make a new game plan. Because that’s what we do. And…we’re ok.

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I ask you –

Power of 3? Or is that only for bad luck?

Anyone else want a dose of this suck? It’s free!

Might be in the business of searching for a new car. Suggestions are always welcomed.