Monday, November 19, 2012

Motivation on a Monday


Today's motivation is brought from the gates of Mordor.... 


I see in your eyes the same fear that would take the heart of me.... 
but it is not this day. 
This we Fight!!

yes. friends. we fight.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The Eye of a Hurricane

I'm here. Just here.

Life is happening  - all spinning and swirling around me, moving too fast to really make it all out.  And I stand in the middle - like standing in the eye of a hurricane.

Growing up on the Gulf Coast, we had a lot of hurricanes.
I know that as an adult, especially if you've only seen them on the news, hurricanes are associated with devastation and havoc, and even ruin and despair.  But that's not my experiential knowledge of hurricanes.
To me, as a kid, Hurricanes meant:
source
Maybe we'll tape our windows?
NO SCHOOL!
Maybe we'll go on a road trip?! aka evacuate...
Sometimes it flooded, and that meant we could go 'swimming' in the street.  That was fun.
If the lightening wasn't too close we could stay in the pool while it was pouring rain pretending we were out conquering the raging sea. That was fun too.
Sometimes it meant a party.
Sometimes we lost power and life got pretty stinking boring for a kid, just waiting around.

One of those times, I remember the storm passing and being told that it would come back.  We were in the eye.  I used the opportunity to escape the house and go to the park - It was deserted and wet, messy with leaves and small branches.
The air was refreshing and it was a nice escape, but the sky was gray.
It was peaceful and beautiful in a way, but knowing it was passing and leaving us with an unknown was...strange.
I don't know what it was I felt in that moment... but now feels the same.

I was probably 16 at that time, and maybe that's part of it... starting to see things and understand things differently than I had 'as a kid'.

Life now is peaceful... but it feels strange.  Maybe because I know there is A LOT going on.
Crossfit, Work, Chris. (It's official, I'm giving him a name ;)

I feel like life is spinning in motion around me, and I am very aware that is enormously bigger than me.
The picture is so much bigger than my life or how I feel about it.
God is moving, and that is GOOD!
But what on earth is He doing and how will the picture change?

Crossfit. I don't know what is happening there. I just don't know.
Pretty shortly after I began blogging I began my adventure in competing.
I overcame so many obstacles this year and achieved a goal that was beyond what I hoped possible.

There it is, friends.  The magic moment.
A girl and her judge... umm.
I mean a princess and her prince ;)
And in doing so I met my match - not looking for him, not expecting, actually not even really seeing him.
But that didn't matter.  He saw me, and laid out his strategic plan to win my heart. ;)

While he was plotting his conquest, I was dreaming crossfit dreams. Setting even higher and bolder goals.
I began training heavier and heavier and higher volumes.  I got to keep on training like I had been for regionals.  I actually really love training. It was fun and exciting, and admittedly exhausting.  But lately has been more duty, and stress, and fear of failure than fun and exciting.  Oh yes, and the exhausting part remains.
And I question, "Do I really want to do this?"

I have asked that question at least 20 times over the last two years, and I always come out with a yes... but right now... I honestly don't know.  I don't know what part this is meant to play in my life. That's a strange place to be.

Work is becoming increasingly demanding, as it does for 9 months out of every 2 to 3 yrs.  (I can not complain. at all!) I am going to be traveling much more.  In fact I have at least 5 trips I'll be making in the next 10 weeks.  Ok fine. only 2 of the 5 are work related and the rest are holidays. But still that's a lot of movement.  A lot of interrupted routine. A lot of sleeping and eating that are not in my own home.  It's not bad.  In fact, it's some very good things, and I want to be able to ENJOY it, but it does mean that I need to lighten up a bit. I need to loosen my grip on my way of being and having uninterrupted control over my life (ha!), and realize that my best right now is not the same as my best other times. It's just different. (Thanks Holly for your post on this topic leading into the holidays :)  And ultimately it means there are going to be stretches of time that are "out of my control" - meaning I won't be doing what I please. I will be doing what needs to be done and eating what is served.   I have an incredible opportunity to enjoy this.  But will I let myself?  It's strange.

"All I ever wanted" was to meet Mr. Right, become Mrs. Right, and make lots of little right babies. Isn't that so super cute??!  Well that did not happen on my timetable, so I went and got another dream in the meantime - I filled my heart with crossfit.
AND I LOVE IT.  I do. most of the time. I will always crossfit, but how do I meld my two dreams?  I don't know what it will look like. Or do I trade one dream for another? I don't know. But I know no one can tell me the answer. I know it means walking one step at a time and letting it take shape. I know I can't cookie cut it... and that's strange.

Life is changing, and that's a good thing. It's out of my control, and that's a good thing too. It just feels... strange ;)  I'm praying for the grace to continue to surf the waves around me and feel myself content and at peace with being on the edge of the unknown and not rushing to uncover it all.  Oh it's nice to write... but for now I'll end with a prayer and advice from Pierre Teilhard de Chardin ~

"Above all, trust in the slow work of God.  We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay. We like to skip the intermediate stages . We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new.  Yet it is the law of all progress that it is made by passing through some stages of instability, and that may take a very long time.

And so I think it is with you. Your ideas mature gradually. Let them grow.

Let them shape themselves with undue haste. Do not try to force them on.  As though you could be today what time - that is to say grace - and circumstances, acting on your own good will will make you tomorrow.  Only God can say what this new Spirit forming in you will be.

Give our Lord the benefit of believing that His hand is leading you.  And accept the anxiety of feeling yourself in suspense and incomplete. "




Friday, October 26, 2012

"It's just the suspense at the top that freaks you out!"




This kid has it right!

How much do I love this little 10yr old girl?!  Facing a bigger jump than she ever has, grappling with her fears, no one can make her do it.  No one will push her - it would be disaster.  She overcame her fear and tasted the sweetness of her victory. 

I love it.  I wish this for you and for me today. 

You were created for greatness!

Live it!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Crossfit Goals 2012: October Update


This is definitely not the most ascetically pleasing post.  Sorry! Guess it's more for my own comparison of where I started and where I'm at with my goals so far. 
For the passerby, just check out all the lines and see how much I have crossed off my list. Fun!
Only TWO of my original goals from January remain!
I have 13 goals still remaining for the next almost 3 months, but I'm getting excitingly close to several of them :)


A Few to Get Started:
Set in January2012


Shoulder Press 100#
Deadlift 265#
Back Squat 235#
Squat Clean 160#, but if I can power clean it, I'll take that too!
Jerk 155#
Snatch 115#
400m run 1:10
500m row 1:50
2 Handstand Pushups full ROM
1:20 Hanstand Hold (wall)
1 Muscle up on rings
4 Bar Muscle ups
25 hand release pushups
Max pullups 35
Max ringdips 15
Hanstand Walk 5 ft.
500m row 1:45
Handstand walk 3yds
Max L sit 45 sec
Max L sit 60 sec
Top 60 in SoCal for the Crossfit Open

*red ones added by March

Mid Year 2012 Crossfit Goals: 
This is where I'd hope to be by the end of the year. 

Press 105#
Deadlift 300#
Back Squat 250#
Clean & Jerk 165#
Snatch 135#  

400m run 1:10
Max pull ups 35
Get Rhythm of Butterfly kipping
Max ringdips 20
Max L sit 60 sec (gah! I'm only 3 sec short!)
Complete Mini Amanda: 7-5-3 Muscle Ups, 95# Squat Snatches
1 Mile run sub 7:01
21 kipping Hand Stand Pushups
5 strict Hand stand pushups
3 consecutive muscle ups
2 strict chest to bar pull ups (palms forward)


It’s the October Update:
Look at everything already accomplished!
 3 months to go!

Shoulder press 100# 
Deadlift 285#
Back Squat 250#
Squat Clean 170.5#
Jerk 163#
Snatch - 132.5# Yes! 

400m run 1:20 hmph! 
        Max Pullups 35 
     The 1st 20 were butterfly J

Max ringdips 15
Max L-sit – not tested since mid year which was 57 sec.

Mini Amanda – not yet attempted but totally possible on a good muscle up day

1 Mile – not getting there 7:38 most recently

2 strict HSPU's

2 muscle ups in a row… close!

I have yet to test the rest!


Analysis:  4 months of a strength program by Casey is totally paying off!! I've made very satisfactory gains on my lifts this year so far.  With the strength & extra body weight though I'm not getting faster, but I haven't really lost much ground there, and trust it will come back to balance. Metcon's are pukeworthy lately, but I'm happy to get reacquainted with being comfortable being uncomfortable there.
My next training cycle will focus on gymnastics and I'll get to train and test more of these goals - I'm excited to see the fruits of a concentrated program in that area as well!

I'm grateful to see the hard work paying off.  I'm grateful for all the progress I still get to see at age 33.   

I'm also thankful for all the people that get negative about what's possible as we "get older" and with injuries, or who size up my limits based on my lack of lifelong athletic ability and development. 

I'm grateful for all that, because that is fuel to me!  I'm fueled and strengthened also by all the people who believe in me and tell me every day how much I CAN!  I love learning to take all of it and use it for gain.

So much of all of this sport... and life too... is a mental game!  Stronger today than yesterday!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

More Training Power & Food for the Heart

I totally sing this out at the top of my lungs in my car
as I drive to the gym.
Sometimes you need a more beautiful than fierce motivation!

In my car, by myself, I totally sound like Whitney Houston.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Let it Count.

" When is the last time you wrote down all the things that you are proud of, that you've overcome, that you once couldn't do but now you can? "

Dawn Fletcher, inspirational coach extraordinaire, posed this question maybe a week or two ago, and I had to admit to myself it's been MONTHS at least.

I don't take enough time to count my blessings and let myself be proud of what I've done...
This is a tough exercise for me. I so often dismiss the victories almost as soon as they come, but I'm going to own it! 

1) I have been busting my butt in training. And almost everyday I think of how much more I need to do and how much deeper I need to dig if I'm going to do this.  And I've spent more time being discouraged that my max efforts are not where I want them, over being grateful that I get to workout every day. But you know, I AM proud that I am pouring my heart into my dreams and doing the work. I am giving my all, no matter how "my all" varies from day to day.

2) I have made gains in all my lifts pretty much weekly. I've never back squatted 220 for 3x3 or deadlifted 225 for 3x5 or deadlifted 260 for 2 reps. I'm pushing new limits. I'm proud of that.

3) I'm making room for a relationship in my life. Opening my heart to let myself be loved.  Working to be honest and open. This is a big "overcome" for me.  Another great step towards a goal I sort of stopped pursuing or believing was attainable.  I'm proud of that. and grateful.

4) Last month I visited my family.  A place where boundaries barely exist and structure has long been out of reach.  But this trip I made it a point to make a schedule.  To set limits. To take care of myself.  And this freed me to really enjoy my time there with out regret. 

5) I'm also going to add a little recap of the last 6 months accomplishments that I couldn't do but now can!
Handstand walks. Balanced headstands.  Muscle ups. Handstand pushups

6) I have done a lot of interior work in the last year.  Choosing to fight belief systems that are holding me back from grace.  This takes a lot of courage and humility.  I'm proud of that.

7) Also last month, I entered a competition and I took first place. I dismiss it for being a small competition, but who cares?  It IS something to be proud of.  Another day it may not happen, but why should that rob me of that moment in time that I gained a victory.

So, when's the last time you listed all the things you have accomplished, have overcome, are proud of?  I hope we both take time to remember and celebrate it!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

One year later... & thoughts on slipping into smitten

Theme music for today's post.

Despite the fact that in this blog I clearly expose all my frantic, messy, train wreck, struggling and striving imperfections to the internet... somehow I still seem to imagine that I hold some sort of perfection and togetherness of appearance. yeah, I know. No clue.

In my adventures in dating, or lack there of, I think it is precisely this divide - between reality and what I want to believe (and have others believe) is the reality - that is the primary culprit in the better named "misadventures" ...

Exactly one year ago, I posed the question to you all of what the heck is my problem and do I even want to change it?  Now seems like a good time to follow up on that point - because I have a pretty good comparison to make, and progress reports are always in order. Are they not?


1) Yes, yes. I'm NOT perfect, but someone has recently entered my life that insists daily on seeing me with my strengths and weaknesses, my daily battles, as something of the most beautiful and amazing nature.   So while I freak out and fight to keep up all my defenses and anxieties that I'm the one holding "it all" together (even though I know this is not true) ... he challenges me to love myself, mess and all.

2)  So he's not Catholic. meh. no one's perfect ;) 
In fact, it might be better this way. We'll see.
Considering my point from last year that Catholics seem so often to disagree on the ways they believe and live their faith and what's optional and what's not... such that you often don't really know what you're going to get even with someone that calls themselves the same religion as you,  it seems so much  more about growing together. 
And here is someone that respects and admires my faith and convictions...
So what I have found, despite denominational differences, is that we're able to share a love of Christ and both daily invite Him into each step of the journey - and that really is the core of it all.
It's so freeing to know the whole thing is in God's hands and we're both leaving it there.

My relationship with God, absolutely, IS the only way I make sense of and come to peace with anything in life, and that relationship is inseparable from the Sacraments through the Church.  I could no sooner abandon my faith than I could stop breathing. And he doesn't ask that of me. He's even been coming to Mass! This openness and acceptance of something that is so important to me is a precious gift, even if he never shares every aspect of it. 

3) It's still true.  All I do is work and crossfit, but lucky me!  Crossfit brought this Captain Awesome Mr. Tough guy, honey snuggle muffin to me ;)  I didn't have to compromise my goals, and force myself to go out looking.  He was up close and personal in the midst of my competition mode and still picked me out as his crossfit crush.  That's so awesome. Even though I'd like to keep a pretty face on, knowing he's seen me in the raw. really raw. beast mode. and still thinks I'm attractive is encouraging.

4) This is the painstaking part.... I have been VERY comfortable in the perfect little order and delicate balance of my life and emotional health, that I've fought to create.  It IS a process of learning to extend my life to include some one and stretch beyond work and crossfit.  BUT this is just about as organic of a transition as I could hope for, with someone that supports me and my lifestyle in every way.  I am SO grateful to have such an incredibly patient, caring, and strong man in my life.

5) Again... have I met one of the most understanding and supportive men on the planet?
Date 3 (or 4 depending who you ask)
Him: "SO, what are your goals, dreams, ambitions?"
Me: "Honestly, I've never been a career driven person... all I ever wanted to be was a wife and a mom..."
I don't think we ever got past that point in this particular conversation. 
No talk about how that has changed.
Nothing about how I have adapted my goals in light of a "dream" so long deferred. 
I think at the time I didn't think he was really listening to me. But he was. He just didn't need to hear more than that right then. I guess even though I don't have clear power career woman goals it's clear enough that I'm immensely loyal, committed, and driven in anything I set as valuable to me.   It's enough.  It's a beautiful thing.  He sees that, and that is rad.
About the rest ... well he's had plenty of time for abundant adventures of his own: snowboarding, and rafting, and skating, and traveling... a lot like me in different ways.... trusting that God has the plan and the timing.
His providence has never disappointed.

So... I say let the adventure continue.
one day at a time :)

So Blessed.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What if it's hard?


Sometimes I don't think I give credit to the "hardness" of "what I do"...
all this training nonsense ya know?  It doesn't seem like such a big deal.
I just do it. There is no other way.  I have a fire burning that drives me.

sometimes.

Not so much with the fire and 2nd nature business today.

I 'hurt' my neck last week. Of course, I have been kicking so much crossfit booty lately my brain had no problem accepting that I must be invincible and destined to climb and climb to the heights of my lofty goals... Long story short I pushed it until it was in-ignorable, leading to 5 full rest days... 5 FULL REST DAYS.
Chump change right?  When many people may not even remember the last time they 'worked out'.

For me, for the goals I have, the progress I've made, the volume I've been training... 5 days is kind of a big deal.  I get ONE, one day a week that I do nothing related to training, MAYBE two if I'm totally smoked.
That is what my program allows.  Breaking from the program to rest and recover I felt broken and defeated. I felt sad. I feared the loss of the momentum I had gained.
But I rested and then became reluctant to return, timid about my limits and recovery,
And down right FATIGUED as I tried to get back to the routine.

As I got moving again, my brain immediately processed the following message:
"This sucks. It hurts. I'm tired. It's uncomfortable."
This is why I didn't want a break. I was afraid it would come to this. 

And I realized, "gosh, this is why people DON'T work out."  (it may be one reason anyway.)
They show up and it's hard, it's all of those things I said and more.
And the will just screams, I DON'T WANT TO! 
Doesn't it?

Mine does. I really don't want to, I don't "feel" like it.  I'm embarassed and sad that I'm only doing half of what I "should" be doing (PS. BRILLIANT POST BY FOLLOWHOLLY ON THIS POINT & more).... but there are things I want more than I don't want to expose myself to this yucky feeling.  Things I want more than listening to the voice that whispers, "there's really no need for this, now is there?"
Don't you have those things too?

More than you hate the current discomfort,
          and how much you want to convince yourself that it's not really that important,
                   or isn't going to make that much of a difference,
                               or you are just not made for exercise, 
                                          or you have to much to do,
                                                          or you'll do it tomorrow,
                                                                   or you are destined to fail any way,
or what ever the excuse (and they really are all excuses).

More than all those things... there's a reason you DO want to follow through.
Don't your kids (or future kids) deserve to have a healthy mom/dad?  Who will be there with them for the long run?   What about your spouse or significant other? What would you like to be for them?
Don't YOU deserve to feel better, more energetic, more confident, happier with your accomplishments, that You didn't give up?? 


well. and there you have it from the poet himself.
I don't know where this came from, but I don't make any $ here. so...
It's fine right?

As I sat on the rower, counting down the meters,
I was thinking about all these things, remembering how hard it was in the beginning, how hard it is RIGHT NOW, and negotiating with myself to find the will.

I AM WORTH IT.
Having goals and fighting for them is worth it.  
It DOES matter.
AND it matters so much more when it takes a sacrifice.


One day at a time, I'll show up. I'll work my way back.
I'll choose to be patient with myself, while calling myself out and fighting not to make excuses for what I could do because I am afraid it will suck (not injure me, just suck).  I'll choose not to compare myself with others and where they are.  Not to compare myself with myself and where I have been, or where I feel I should be. (Thanks again Holly. Seriously read her post if you want some jedi mind tricks).

We all face these kind of days.  These kinds of hurdles.
You all motivate me not to give up.
This isn't just about picking up from little set backs.
It's about also being courageous to make a change if you need one.
Because It will be hard... some times more than others.
But without a doubt,
You are worth it!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Yeah, I eat. Every day. Like a boss!

So when I first began "blogging" (if that's what we can call this) almost 2 yrs ago, I posted a lot about food, what I was eating, how I was training... Then I fairly quickly realized that there are SO many real food bloggers out there, and really VERY few people were reading this so... meh. all my food is pretty much the same anyway.... so it got boring pretty fast.


However, a friend mentioned recently that she wished I would post what I'm eating. I didn't even realize she read my blog :) BUT yo. I love it. I'll share whatever I can that might be helpful.
Zucchini, Squash, Onions and Eggs...
broccoli slaw is my staple breakfast 'veggie' though

An average day of Food

Breakfast = 3 eggs and some mix of veggies sauteed in Coconut Oil.
ALWAYS with coffee + canned coconut milk on the side.

*If I'm feeling a little spicy I may cut one of the eggs and throw in a diced Italian sausage.


Snack = follows breakfast by 2-3 hours.
I was out of blueberries... back up= mixed berries
Honestly this is my most frequent snack lately... frozen blueberries + a big scoop of Almond or Sunbutter + some shredded coconut + almond milk and maybe 1/2 scoop protein powder...
I have NO guilt over this when my training volume is heavy and high.

If I'm more relaxed in training... and more conscious of weight control,
a good snack is
1 Hardboiled Egg or Ounce-ish of Chicken + Cherry Tomatoes + a few almonds

OR just the berries with cinnamon and coconut shreds, without all the extra fatty goodness.


Midday Training is followed by 1.5 scoop Progenex. (I hate to love it).

Note: I did not make this salad.
A restaurant did. Mine is better.
Lunch is whatever I can throw together fast.
here are two samples:

Big bowl of spinach or greens. with about 1 cup of halved grape tomatoes. spoon of garlic, some kalamata olives, Sundried tomatoes in olive oils, maybe some nuts, and scallions if I have them around...
top it off with some chicken (3-5 oz) and balsamic vinegar and call it delicious!!

fresh cilantro makes it best.












OR if I've made it and it lasted this long I may have my favorite chicken Salad with home made mayo... mmm!

Go to "the clothes make the girl" for the mayo recipe. It's bomb.

Sometimes there's time and hunger for afternoon snack... It follows along with morning snack's options.

Evening training is followed by 1.5 scoop Progenex.

Confession: this was my lunch and
dinner yesterday. 
Dinner ... finally by 9-10pm... Dinner...
Almost always a hot plate of sorts.  Sauteed up veggies with pre cooked meat source tossed in with some spices.

Example: Spaghetti Squash with Ground Turkey, onions, and mini peppers.  Sauteed, with Sundried tomatoes tossed in for a little oil and extra flavor (I do this ALL the time in place of sauces).  This one has a little balsamic on it as well.... but if you're going for the asian flavor reach for the coconut aminos.











OR, maybe I'll have cooked a roast in the crock pot and serve it up with roasted veggies (tossed in EVOO, and baked for 30-40min at 400 degrees)

Finally, IF i'm not concerned at all about weight issues... I may or may not throw in dried mango, and dark chocolate, into my day at will.  I know myself.  I can tell when it's slowing me down, so that usually is enough to keep it in check. Fats give me energy, but extra sugars drain me,  so if I need to cut treats it comes from the mango and chocolate before the nut butters and almond or coconut milk.

And that's a day!



Disclaimer: Actually the beautiful simple thing is that any meal can be eaten at any time of day.  Foods don't have to be exclusively for one particular meal or another... so much flexablity.

Important Ingredient:  all of this is accompanied by a gallon of water a day... give or take a bit depending on heat and training volume. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Training Power Deux



"We are what we repeatedly do.

Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit."

-Aristotle



Another video that gets my head straight and set to do work, make my training count, and generally gets me  fired up to make a habit of living for excellence in this moment.


"I have rassled with an alligator... I done tossled with a whale.
I have handcuffed lightning and thrown thunder in jail.
That's bad." 
Ha.ha. Muhammad Ali... such a poet 

"It's not about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.
How much you can take and keep moving forward." 
Thanks for that Rocky Balboa

"Never give in. Never give in. Never. Never. Never. In nothing great or small, large or petty,
Never give in, except to convictions of honor and good sense. Never yield to force. 
Never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy." 
-Winston Churchill... He knows.


Monday, August 6, 2012

Comparing a Year's Progress

goof off striving for athleticism
Height:   5'4" 
Weight:  142

Clean & Jerk:      140
Snatch:              100
Deadlift:            245
Back Squat:        200
Bench Press:       135

Thruster 130#
100 unbroken doubles unders
Fran 4:07 rx
30 unbroken pullups


Some goals to be practiced and mastered:
Handstand walk 10ft
1 muscle up
250# deadlift
sub 6:30 mile
10 handstand pushups to abmat
1 Handstand pushup to full depth
Wallballs & boxjumps (because I suck at them. really.)

August 2012
Individual SoCal Regional Competitor
Height:   5'4" 
Weight:  143

Clean & Jerk:      163
Snatch:              127
Deadlift:            275
Back Squat:        235
Bench Press:       145 for 3x5

Thruster 130# - no clue if I’ve still got this. Probably. But I HATE thrusters.
Fran 3:47 rx
30 unbroken pullups… I think I got 29 last time I tried :/

Some goals to be practiced and mastered:
Handstand walk 10ft- pretty sure I’ve done this.
1 muscle up – Holla, every week!
250# deadlift - done
sub 6:30 mile – not a chance
10 handstand pushups to abmat- forget the abmat, bust out the DB’s for deficit
1 Handstand pushup to full depth – got it.
Wallballs & boxjumps- no longer a problem.

Victory and the Fire


C.A.L. Saturday Night Lights 
Crossfit Temecula South Aug 4, 2012

I post so much about the fight. the journey. the path. I suppose there are victories in there too - My muscle up. Qualifying for Regionals. Finishing the Whole 30. and today standing on a podium.

It was a small competition.  In fact I only had two competitors in the advanced female division - my beloved training partners, Natalie and Kim. Sharing this competition with them was really special. I love them. We dig for our best together all the time, while 100% encouraging and helping one another.  Everyday they are with me in this journey.  Saturday, we just took it outside the box.  Competing with your support system beside you is very different from competing beside girls that have no vested interest in you whatsoever, except to finish ahead of you. I am so very grateful for these girls.

I won this one. I wanted to win it. We train to win. But I know these girls, I know where their strengths and weaknesses are. I knew where I could gain and where I might lose ground with them. I know what their training setbacks have been. They've each a few setbacks and they still made me fight for it. They were right on my heels. They are phenomenal athletes and any one of us could have taken it Saturday.  But in circumstance and drive, I was positioned to succeed this time. 

Now, for the road ahead, how do I take that to the next level? How do I come off a victory, celebrating it, but thirsty to be better?  Just by being honest and real and remembering my goals.
I guarantee if I took this opportunity to sit and bask in self satisfaction, and to ease up a little on my training, because "Hey I'm doing great", and then face this competition again next month... the outcome would be different. I wouldn't be positioned to win, because I wouldn't be as hungry for it, because I would miss valuable training time, because the little things we do and sacrifice EVERY DAY add up and count in the end.

I listen to all sorts of crazy motivational youtube clipsEveryday. It feels silly to share with people, but I know it works for me. Every day on my way to the gym I have to stoke and fan the flames of desire and fight in my heart in order to get the most out of the training session.  At the competition, I sat off to the side with my head phones getting my self pumped up and hungry to start in the lead and stay in the lead. hungry NOT to quit. Not to slow down. Because once that timer starts and the weights start moving... it will get heavy, it will get hard, my lungs will burn, my legs and back will ache, and there will be a point that I want to just stop, before it's over.  Always.

I have to have my head fixed harder than my muscles.
This was fun :) I have only ever been on the podium in my life ONE time, and that was as part of a team.

As small as this competition was, it was a victory for me. I need to celebrate that.  I need to let it reach my heart and hold it there. The podium is possible. I am capable of suceeding at this when I work for it.  These months of focus, and consistent drive, have been working. 

Oh, yeah, I don't do this just to fight every day. I DO have an end, a goal I want to achieve.
And one rest day later, I need to move forward from this experience determined to be even better and stronger and faster next week and the next and the next.
Back to the box.

Friday, August 3, 2012

What happened while I was busy training?

It's been over three years since I first walked through the doors of my local crossfit gym in Rio Rancho NM, just after my 30th birthday.

I don't know if I could do a single pullup.  I certainly remember starting out with the big black band for assistance.
I had never really had any experience with a barbell, and wasn't eager for a closer acquaintance.
I would go to the gym in the middle of the day, when the fewest people were there, so it was less intimidating.

I certainly remember being intimidated.
I remember the first time someone stayed through the class to cheer and encourage us.
I remember how this attention and care strengthened me.

Crossfit. We sweat together. We suffer together. We dig for our best together.
A lot has been written about it. Why we love it, why it becomes part of our lives, but that is not what this post is about. This post is just a reflection back on the beginning and stepping outside myself to look at today. 

I had no idea in the beginning how much I would suffer, how HARD I would fight, how much I would risk. 
I also had no idea how much I would gain.

Today,
I'm that girl.
That girl that totally intimidated me.
That girl that awed and wowed me.
That girl with those muscles and definition I dismissed as genetics when I saw them on others.
That girl throwing up crazy amounts of weight for a 3x5.
That girl straining and grunting like the boys.
That girl I never thought about being,
but that girl I AM.

Somewhere along the way, I decided I LOVED this stuff. I loved pushing my limits every day. 
I didn't think or bother to care about WHAT I'd become if I threw myself in the crucible of digging for my best....
If everyday I disciplined my mind and body to pursue this training.
To push when I wanted to give up.
To show up when I wanted to stay home.
To add that extra 5 lbs on the bar, full range of motion on a squat, full height on wall balls, that extra rep, that extra pull.
one day after another.

It's amazing what happens when you take a chance on desire. over. and over. and over. again.
The WHO you can find is pretty amazing. I catch a glimpse every now and then of what is happening while I've had my head down the hole of sticking to the program of my training.

I've become
That girl who hopes.
That girl who believes.
That girl who doesn't fear failure.
That girl who doesn't settle for excuses.
That girl who doesn't settle for the easy way out.
That girl who doesn't quit.
That girl who lives.
That girl who risks.
That girl who shrugs her shoulders at the odds not in her favor.

I'm still me. I'm just more powerful, walking a little more fully in God's glory,  a lot more real... and over a 1000 steps closer to who I was created to be.  and wow. It's a cool view to take in.
Just for a moment.
Drawing encouragement.

Before returning to being that girl. just doing what is hers to do. today.