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Thursday, June 22, 2017

Pregnancy: Week 14

Why hello there, 2nd trimester!

14 weeks, WOW! I wish I could say time is flying but that's such a lie!

So it has now been about a month since we announced it. Here's what's been going on these past few weeks:
  • People already want to touch my belly. I don't mind, I'm not going to tell you not to, but just know that this early on in my pregnancy, the baby is still really small and you're probably just rubbing around and feeling on my last meal (likely a cheese sandwich).
  • Exercise is already getting harder, but I'm still going and I feel really comfortable with it. I'm starting to substitute some stuff just because I'm clumsy, like doing step-ups instead of box jumps. That's pretty much the only modification so far! Breathing is getting harder, my heart rate elevates faster... and I have to talk myself down ALL THE TIME about not being too competitive and trying to beat everyone. I have to convince myself that it's okay to finish last and that I'm not doing this right now to compete, I'm doing it to have a healthy body and healthy baby!
  • A couple weeks ago my husband and I ran the Spartan Sprint and it was SO FUN (to me... not so much to him!). 
  • I cannot count the number of times that I've already been told that I shouldn't exercise during my pregnancy. It's mostly elderly people who are just concerned, and that's understandable. I just smile and say that I'll take it easy and listen to what my doctor says, which is all true.
  • I've experience very mild morning sickness the past couple of weeks, but nothing too bad. Some mornings I wake up SO hungry and some days I can't eat until after 11:00 because I'm nauseous, but that's pretty rare.
  • My appetite is subsiding, which I guess is kind of nice since during the first 10 weeks I could literally eat 4,000 calories a day and still feel hungry! During the afternoons is when I get most of my calories, but it's hard to eat then because I'm at work and super busy.
  • We had another appointment this week... baby's heartbeat sounds so strong and beautiful! At our next appointment they will do some blood which means we'll find out the gender! WOOHOO! Almost everyone I know thinks/wants it to be a girl... we shall see!!!
  • I've started getting headaches these past couple of days. I'm really lucky that I had my first really bad one on the day of our doctor's appointment because I asked about what to take for them and they gave me a prescription. So far it hasn't seemed to help lol but at least I have something to take for them!

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Today's Date: 6/22/17

How many weeks: 14

Trimester: 2nd

How big is the baby?: About the size of a lemon

Weight gain: 4 lbs (no change over the past couple of weeks, probably because my appetite has gone back to being semi-normal)

Food cravings: Nothing specific... I still want all the sweets but that's not the baby's fault! ha

Gender: Unknown

Prediction: Girl! HR is 148 and the Chinese calendar says it's a girl too... everyone knows those things are an exact science!

Diet: Not great, I snack too much and don't eat near enough protein. My diet is about the same now as it was before.

Exercise: Still going to the gym about 4 days a week, and it feels great! I have a 5k coming up in a couple of weeks. I usually do the 10k in this race because it's my favorite race of the whole year... but I'm crazy and always kill myself trying to do it in under an hour so I'm just going to skip the crazy this year

Aches and pains: Heartburn, some lower back pain when I sit for a long time. HEADACHES.

Maternity clothes: None (YET) but my sister-in-law did just give me a whole bag full of stuff so when it's time to break them out, I won't have to buy nearly as much!

Favorite moment this week: Hearing the baby's heartbeat <3 I haven't felt pregnant at all since my symptoms have been so mild, and hearing the baby's heart go thump thump thump is just the most surreal thing ever.

Looking forward to: Finding out the gender!


Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Spartan Sprint at the ATT Stadium

BRAG ALERT. Just wanted to warn you..

My husband and I (and our little lemon, too!) ran the Spartan Sprint this past weekend at the ATT Dallas Cowboys Stadium. Talk about WOW, that was so cool!

I was super afraid that I would have to do about 300 penalty burpees throughout the race... not because I'm pregnant, but because of my shoulder. Well, I'm happy to report that I only failed TWO obstacles for a total of 60 burpees! Woot woot!

Here is my opinion on this race:
  • It is definitely a Spartan. This race is not something I recommend to someone who's just looking for something fun to do: it's very challenging! And any obstacle you fail earns you a 30-burpee penalty, so don't just show up expecting to skip anything that looks too hard. You'll pay. And burpees are not easy, either.
  • I loved the experience of running out on the football field, doing pushups in the Dallas Cowboys locker room, and crossing the finish line in (on?) the end zone. BUT... I will always prefer an outdoor obstacle race for its scenery. I did, however, really appreciate how clean I was afterwards! Although caked in several layers of sweat, it was very nice not having to coax mud off my body with a baby wipe!
  • There were SO many stairs. Luckily, I'd prepared for this by doing a ton of workouts at the amphitheater, but still, there were SO MANY stairs. And not just running/walking up/down stairs, BEAR CRAWLS. I'd say we bear crawled up at least 20 flights of stairs. 
  • I could not have picked a better race to run at 12 weeks pregnant! Two words: AIR CONDITIONING! There were a few obstacles outside, but for the most part, we were in the stadium where it was pretty cool.
  • The obstacles were considerably easier than what I've done at the Beast or Super. That could be because of it being mostly indoors, or maybe it's intentional since it's meant to be more of a "beginner" Spartan race? I have no idea... just an observation! Maybe instead of the term "easier" I should say "less hard"... because it was still hard. 
Speaking of obstacles, here is a list of some that I remember:

Jump rope with a heavy heavy rope x25
Box jumps x25
Slam ball x25 
Pushups x25
Stone carry down, 5 burpees, stone carry back
Several wall climbs (Side note: I could not have done these without my husband giving me a boost each time!)
Rope Climb (NAILED IT! I haven't tried climbing a rope since shoulder surgery. I was certain I would fail. Turns out... I don't really rely on my arms for this so I had ZERO problems! It was awesome!)
Spear Throw
Some weird rolling thing you put your feet on and then pull yourself with your arms down and back
Sandbag pull (that sucker was so heavy... again, couldn't have done it without my husband)
Sandbag carry
A-frame cargo net climb
Monkey bars (they weren't bars though, they were rings)
LOTS of bear crawls

The two I failed were:

  • Spear Throw (because of my shoulder still not being recovered, I had to throw with my left arm! It wasn't a terrible throw... the spearhead went straight and would have stuck IF I hadn't missed my entire target by a full 3 feet)
  • Monkey bars/rings (again, my shoulder is stupid. I couldn't even hold my body weight on the first ring, so I bowed out and did my burpees) 
My next race: Fireball Classic! I LOVE doing the treacherous 10K, but I always KILL myself trying to finish in under an hour (which I still have never done). Since I'm pregnant I'm going to scale back and only do the 5K this year and I'll TRY to just jog it slowly. I'll be about 15 weeks at that point so it shouldn't be too terrible. We'll see! 

Friday, June 9, 2017

Another Kid Post: Summertime Woes

I saw this on FB and thought: YES YES YES and YES

Perfection Pending by Meredith Ethington
1. Why can't my kids shut the door? WHY? They walk in the house and expect it to just close itself? Where do they get this idea???

2. I don't have to ask "Why is this wet?".. I already know. Either Ali took a shower and then proceeded to drip dry all over the house (I'm not kidding), or one of the kids spilled something and pretended not to know, or it's pee. 

3. Why do I have to remind them EVERY SINGLE TIME to hang up the towel? Am I not speaking the same language as them when I say it? Is drying off their freshly cleansed bodies SO MUCH FUN that they just forget to follow the directions I've been giving them for the past 6 to 11 years?? 

4. PLAY OUTSIDE. I hate to be that "When I was a kid" kind of old lady, but seriously, WHEN I WAS A KID, our parents LOCKED US OUTSIDE and we weren't allowed to come back in until lunchtime. Then after lunch we did it all over again. Last weekend I made them go outside and play and they went outside, shot the basketball for 5 minutes, and came back in. What is wrong with my children!? I LOVE BEING OUTSIDE and they act like it's the most excruciating thing in the world to PLAY. 

5. I don't have to ask who left the water hose running... when it's hooked up to the sprinkler and ON TOP of the trampoline, my guess of either kid is pretty solid. 

6. As soon as my kids walk in from daycare, or as soon as I walk into the house after working out at the gym, the first thing I hear is "Hey mom. What's for dinner?" CAN I HAVE FIVE MINUTES TO JUST BE HOME before you little heathens start asking me to feed you!? Judging by the fact that this happens EVERY DAY, I'm going to go with NO, they can't wait that long. And then one hour after picking at their food at the dinner table and complaining about my cooking... "There's nothing to eat in this house! I'm starving!" Sometimes I feel like the Beast when I yell "THEN GO AHEAD AND STAAAAARVE!" 

7. Why do my children think that someone needs to entertain them? I am your MOTHER, not your personal Activities Specialist. ENTERTAIN YOURSELF.

8. "Play with the toys you already have. You know there are some kids that don't have ANY toys at all!" (I also use a similar phrase concerning food)
I'm not kidding... Jordan thinks that he if he gathers up the things he doesn't play with and "gives them to those kids that don't have any," then that's how he earns new toys. Or... maybe you could just appreciate all the junk--errrr, toys---that you already have and go PLAY WITH THEM you spoiled little stinker!

9. Ali thinks that she deserves to have a friend over EVERY WEEKEND, sometimes during the week, too. Sometimes I just don't feel like it, kid. I love you and I love your friends, but you really don't NEED to have a friend over every single day of your life. Go play with your brother. 

10. "I'm bored." Oh good! I just spent 2 hours mowing the yard, go rake up the grass.. or scrub some toilets, or give me a foot rub. Or, hey, go BE A KID and figure out how to entertain yourself. Outside. Or with your 5 billions toys. 

Monday, June 5, 2017

Kid #3, Pregnancy #2: The Lowdown.

I am TERRIBLE at keeping secrets! These past few weeks have been KILLING ME. I've been wanting to yell it out since April that

I'M PREGNANT! 

My husband and I swore we would never have another baby after Jordan. We already had Ali and even though she's my step-daughter I've always loved her like she's mine... so one girl, one boy, that felt like enough! Plus, Jordan cried constantly for like two years straight and that's hard to forget! He didn't start sleeping through the night consistently until he was three. I lived on 3-4 hours of sleep every night for a loooooooong time. And during this time of no sleep, I also went back to school for my Master's degree AND held a full time job. So smart! I really believed that I would never be able to mentally or physically go through all that again.

When Jordan turned 3... things changed SO. MUCH. He grew out of the colic. His ears started getting better (3 years of ear infections every 2 weeks... nightmare). And, yes, I am biased, but he is just the BEST kid around. He's 6 now. He listens, he's quiet in church, he tells me I'm the best mommy ever, he says his prayers, he says "Yes ma'am" (at home--I don't think this carries over at school or daycare lol). He asks to be excused from the dinner table. He helps wash dishes. He KEEPS HIS ROOM CLEAN, Y'ALL. He brushes his teeth without being told, picks out his own clothes, and dresses himself every day (sometimes I try to pick out his clothes, that NEVER works). He's polite, considerate, funny, and just a big ole sweetheart. I can't imagine life without him! It turns out that all the sleepless nights and crying and frustration is all worth it--it just took me a REALLY long time to admit it! LOL

So when Jordan turned 5 and Ali was 10, we decided it was time to either have another one or call it quits for good. But then my job as a school librarian was just so stressful and kept me busy year round, so we decided to wait a few months. Then I found out my job was going to be eliminated and we worried we wouldn't have my income anymore. And then I got a really good job and I didn't want to be pregnant right after starting... and then I got another job and felt the same way... and eventually we realized that if we kept waiting for our lives to calm down... for that "perfect timing"... it was never going to happen!

Well, no turning back now! I found out on April 3rd and told my husband a couple days later (I couldn't tell him right away because I had to wait for his gift to arrive--duh!).


We told the kids the day before Mother's Day--yes, they have BOTH been keeping this secret with us for the past few weeks! They are SO excited, but I think Ali is probably the most thrilled. She has been BEGGING for a baby sister ever since Jordan came along!




We told our moms and other family on Mother's Day. They were, of course, thrilled and surprised! The kids made bead bracelets for our moms and I wrote a poem for each of them (the poems were almost identical except for a few lines). Here's the poem:


And here is our moms' faces after reading their poems! 



Spilling the beans was such a relief! We are so excited and absolutely TERRIFIED! HA!

So what's next? My doctor says it is perfectly safe for me to continue working out and running. I've already had countless questions and concerns from friends and family about whether or not I can keep going to the gym. The answer is YES, I can. NO, I'm not going to do anything stupid or unsafe. I'm going to listen to my body. We've already had our first ultrasound and listened to the baby's heartbeat. We're both very healthy! In fact...

I was pregnant when I did the Oklahoma City Memorial Half Marathon! AND when I did the Warrior Dash! Yep! This baby is already experiencing a lot! I also have a Spartan Sprint to run on June 10th (this upcoming weekend!). My husband is doing it with me and will help me complete any of the obstacles that we don't feel are "baby safe" (which hopefully isn't a whole lot). At that point I'll be 12 weeks. My plan is to update on here every few weeks on how I'm feeling, workouts I've been doing, weight gain, cravings, and of course, some profile belly shots! 

Let the countdown begin! 

Today's Date: June 5, 2017

Due Date: December 21, 2017

How many weeks: 11 weeks 4 days

Trimester: First

How big is the baby?: The size of a fig (about 1 and a half inches long)

Weight gain: 4 lbs EEEEEK, this is going to be the biggest struggle for me...

Food cravings: All the sugar, which is actually pretty normal. Also tomato soup with grilled cheese sandwiches.

Gender Prediction: Girl, because I haven't been sick at ALL (yet! fingers crossed) and I was sick the entire time with Jordan. Plus that seems to be the consensus of everyone I know so I'm going with it.

Diet: Terrible. Donuts, candy, bread... I eat one healthy meal a day. The rest is junk. UGH. I'm so hungry ALL THE TIME.

Exercise: Working out 4-5 days a week, no restrictions yet on anything other than I'm not supposed to lift anything heavy, which isn't a problem because of my bum shoulder.

Symptoms: I've had a few mild cases of heartburn; headaches; fatigue (this is getting better now). So far zero morning sickness. Also my boobs hurt. Fun.

Maternity clothes: none (yet, but I've already gained 4 lbs so, you know..)

Favorite moment this week: Announcing the news!

Looking forward to: feeling the baby kick. Sometimes I'm like oooh I think I felt it! And then I'm all... ohh, that's just gas...


Wednesday, May 24, 2017

What Is Your Biggest Regret?

So this video popped up on my FB feed and I started to share it, but the my comment was SO long and I thought... might as well make that a blog post instead! Here is the video:


I love this so much. What are things you WANT to do but you DON'T because you are afraid? 

Truth time: This is one of the biggest reasons I started working out, and why I still do it on a regular basis. I am young. My body is capable of doing so much. SO IS YOURS. I don't want to turn 40, 50, 60, 70... and look back and WISH I had taken better care of myself. WISH that I had signed up for crazy races and taken chances even though I was afraid of failure. 

How many times have you looked back on a photo of yourself when you thought you were "fat" and thought... "Man, I wish I was as 'fat' now as I was back then!" I've seen that quote on Pinterest, I know you have too. And I have totally been there. I don't want to live like that. I will never be 100% satisfied with my body, but I am SO PROUD of what my body has accomplished over the past few years! My body made a another human being. My body ran 3 half marathons. My body learned how to do bar muscle-ups. My body runs and does CrossFit. I don't regret ANY of that! 

Here are some things I DO regret:

1) Making decisions based on what other people think. I do this on a daily basis. I'm talking LIFE decisions! I hate letting people down, saying no. I've taken jobs before because I thought I would feel guilty applying for something and then turning it down. WHA?? Who does that!? 
2) I regret not being a better friend. I am so selfish and so in the "now" all the time. I'm friends with whoever is around me at the time, and I am terrible about staying in touch with those I don't see very often. If that's you, I'm so sorry. I'm working on it. 
3) I regret not taking better care of my shoulder. I should have went to a different doctor for a second opinion when I first injured it! But I didn't, and I made it worse, and now here I am 6 months out from surgery with at least 6 months of recovery remaining. If you have an injury, even if you don't think it's serious, have it checked out. What's the worst that could happen? For me it was about money. But had I sucked it up and paid for the initial MRI all those years ago, I probably could have avoided a VERY expensive surgery later down the road. 
4) I regret not being a more understanding step-parent when my husband and I first got married. I love my little girl like she is my own! I've always treated her like she's "mine"... and I never even considered how it all would make a biological mom feel. I wish I could go back and be more understanding and considerate in that situation.
5) I regret all the years I strayed from God. I regret not listening to what He wanted me to do with my life, and I regret how bad I made being a Christian "look" during my college days! 

I could go on and on about the things I regret! I 'm sure you could, too!

Regret happens in so many areas of life. Going back to school, finishing a degree, applying for the dream job, moving, traveling, starting a family, saying "I'm sorry," volunteering, getting healthy, losing weight, going to church. 

Take a minute. Think about your life, your dreams. Think about the regrets you already have now and realize that you CAN do something about them! What are some things you want to accomplish that you're not because you're afraid of what people might think? Afraid it might be too hard? Afraid you might fail? That's no way to live! 

Everyday you wake up is another opportunity to DO SOMETHING. 

Don't live a life of regret. 

GO LIVE YOUR LIFE! 

Monday, May 1, 2017

13.1 DONE

Woohoo! I am so glad to be finished with the half marathon! I'm never running again! HA

I wish I had more pictures to share but... It was SO COLD and all I could think from 6 a.m. till "finish-line" a.m. was coffee coffee coffee pancakes pancakes warm warm warm. I hate cold so much!

So, how'd it go?

Confession: I was never able to consistently run further than 8 miles during my training. Don't get me wrong, I tried. I stuck to my training plan, but my body for unknown reasons this time around did not want to cooperate. I kept getting an unbearable side stitch during the first TWO miles of every single long run. I don't know why!! All my "short" speed runs were fine. A 4 mile run followed by 2 miles of speed work didn't bother me, but an 8 mile run would each time result in a side stitch within the first few miles. WHY!? So anyway, I tried 8 miles 3 different times and was only able to do it once, and I tried 10 miles twice and couldn't get further than 8 on either of those, either.

So I went into this race knowing I wasn't going to get a PR. Oh well...

My sister Angela and I agreed to stay together (we discussed it after the gun had gone off, not a very lengthy conversation)... this was a mistake for me. She was MUCH better prepared than I was! This was her first half marathon and she killed it. She also killed me. I kept telling her, "We're going too fast," and she'd say, "We'll walk eventually." Well, liar liar pants on fire, she never walked!

At mile 2 or 3, I had to stop and pee. I blame the side stitch paranoia. I hydrated REALLY well the days leading up this race. I thought maybe I wasn't hydrating well enough and that was what was causing all those side stitches? IDK. So yes, I had to stop very early. And by this point my hands were already crazy numb and useless. I go to take off my shorts and guess what... I had accidentally pinned my race bib through my shirt AND shorts. So I had to get the stupid pin opened, then re-pin it... the whole process took about 5 minutes. My sister was beginning to think I was never coming out of the porta potty.

The next few miles felt really good. No side stitch, lungs felt great (which was surprising since I forgot my inhaler), my legs felt strong... And then...

At mile 8, my legs decided to show me pain that they normally keep hidden. I had KNEE pain so bad I had to LIMP up every hill. I'VE NEVER HAD KNEE PROBLEMS! But it was like all my body parts had a secret meeting without me and decided to make running this race as miserable as possible. EVIL. My hips felt so tight that even walking hurt. It was so frustrating! At this point I graciously bowed out and allowed my sister to run off and leave me. In those last 5 miles she put herself a full 13 MINUTES AHEAD OF ME. Her pace was much faster without me dragging her down. Brat! But no really, I'm super proud of her. Also super jealous.

Maybe it's because I turn 30 this year. Maybe it's because it was cold. Maybe it's because I'm a big baby and I don't handle pain well... But I have vowed to never do another half marathon. And no, I'm not doing a full, either. I used to think I was a runner, but now... maybe I've just been pretending all these years! I mean--regardless of how much I train, my pace has gradually gotten slower and slower over time. My first 5K I ever ran was my fastest. My first half marathon was my fastest. I know that a fast pace isn't what defines a runner, but I am a competitive person, and I'd like to at least beat myself occasionally! You know, the whole, "Today I'll be better than I was yesterday, and tomorrow I'll be better than I am today" kind of thing.

Okay, I'm being dramatic. I am still a runner and I will continue to run, but I think 8 miles is my body's wall. Give me a week or two, I'll change my mind and probably sign up for another half marathon. But as of right now... NEVER AGAIN!

Final time: 2.26.32 (10 minutes slower than PR). Whatever.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

What Are Your Bad Excuses?

I've been working out an a regular basis since my son was born over 6 years ago. It started out just running, then going to the gym, then crossfit, and now just mostly running again because of my shoulder.

I have had numerous people come up to me over the years and comment about how they want to lose weight or get in shape, and they need advice. They'll ask me about how much a gym membership costs. Some have asked if I would be willing to train them. A LOT of people ask me how I find the time. Some ask about nutrition. Some complain that they don't have any support. I am going to address all these things...

Is gym membership expensive? 
In my opinion, yes, if you go to a quality gym with trainers that know what they are doing, it is expensive. Before I came to ECU (where employees get a FREE membership for now!), I spent about $1200 a year on a gym membership, and that's on the CHEAP end, y'all. Committing to a gym is expensive. BUT... IT IS WORTH IT. You know what else is expensive? Getting your hair done, getting your nails done, eating out, going to the movies, buying clothes, paying bills... but we do all those things anyway. WHY? BECAUSE THEY ARE PRIORITIES. If your hair is a priority, then by all means spend your money on it. If having a night out with your spouse is a priority, then YES, spend your money on it! And if getting your body into shape is important to you, then PAY THE DANG MEMBERSHIP FEE. I've made a LOT of financial sacrifices over the years so that I could afford going to the gym. I don't regret any of it.

But also remember--YOU DON'T NEED A GYM TO BE AN ACTIVE HUMAN BEING. If you really can't afford it, then take up walking or jogging. Buy the DVDs you saw off that infomercial with the sweaty man telling you, "You can do it!" Look up some workouts on Pinterest.

"Can you be my trainer?"
NO. Trust me... you do NOT want me to train you. I am NOT certified. Asking someone to train you who is not certified is insane, I'm sorry. I have basic knowledge of fitness because I do it... but that does not make me a professional. It's like assuming that anyone who ever went to elementary school could be a teacher. Nooooo, it doesn't work like that. I can tell you what I do, and you can copy me if you want to, but trust me when I say that every body is different. You don't want someone untrained telling you what your body could or should do. Find a certified trainer, my friend.

"I don't know how you do it--I just don't have time!"
Yes, you do. Do you have time to watch The Walking Dead? Do you have time to go out and eat after church on a Sunday afternoon? Do you have time to read a book? Play on social media? Go out with your friends?

This excuse kills me. YOU HAVE TIME. The problem is that exercising is not a PRIORITY. We all do the things that are important to us. I have an 8-5 job and two kids. I am active in our church and I volunteer at least once a month. I go to basketball games, softball games, plays, movies, birthday parties, holiday events, dinners, field trips, doctor appointments... I have to plan out my weekends months in advance. We are SO busy. But I will never be too busy to take care of my body because my health (both physical and MENTAL) is a priority to me. So the next time you start to say, "I don't have time!" STOP. Instead say, "It is not important to me." Because that's really what you mean.

"Eating healthy is expensive. And hard."
You won't find me arguing as much here. Going to McDonald's is cheaper than buying the ingredients myself and cooking them at home. And it's also faster. And some people (like my rotten children) think it tastes better than a home cooked meal.

But here is the thing: I care about what goes into my body... I'm gonna say like 75% of the time. I stopped using artificial sweeteners in my coffee; I don't eat at most fast food restaurants; I don't drink soda; I buy mostly organic stuff; I try to plan ahead what I'm going to order if we go out somewhere for dinner...

BUT... I also eat really bad a lot, too. I can't say no to donuts or pancakes. I LOVE coconut cream pie. And my favorite meal each month is our Sunday evening potluck we do at church. Ohhhhh I loooooove casseroles and bread. mmmmmmm...

Learning to eat healthy-ish is hard. I spent years counting calories only worrying about that one number, but over time I've learned what kinds of good things my body needs and what kinds of bad things my body will tolerate. Do your research! If you want to go to the Olympics or be a body-builder or a model, you're going to have to learn to eat clean 24/7. Well I don't have the desire to do those things. So my rule is to eat clean most of the time. I make sure to eat plenty of protein, drink all my water, and eat my recommend servings of healthy fats, carbs, and vegetables every single day. And then if I want to eat the Reese egg out of my kid's Easter basket, well then so be it. I've learned to look at the ingredients instead of just thinking that "fat-free" means "healthy." Again... do your research!

"No one really supports me, I don't want to do it alone"
It can be 300 times harder (scientific number, duh) to be active and eat healthy if your significant other/parents/kids/friends or whoever isn't doing it, too. BUT IT IS NOT IMPOSSIBLE. 

You don't have to eat the same crap your family or friends eat. Sometimes if my husband and kids want to eat Sonic, I let them order their food... and then I go home and cook my own meal for myself. It isn't fun, but it's healthier.

When we cook at home and sit down as a family, I cook as healthy as I can and they either eat it or they starve. Sorry, kids, that's the deal. Same rule applies to my husband.

The other night we ordered pizza and I REALLY wanted a slice of cheese pizza, it sounded sooooo good. But I quickly realized there wasn't going to be enough if I ate some, so I skipped it altogether. While they ate the pizza, I had chicken breast and veggies.

I've been going to the gym by myself for 4 years. The first few weeks was scary--I didn't know anyone, I'd never been in a "gym" before, and I felt weak and out of shape. But I kept going. And now some of my closet friends are women I met at the gym!

I have never had a running partner. I have always ran by myself -- actually I prefer to run alone now!

If I can't make it to the gym and I don't feel like running, I program my own workout at home and I do it by myself. It's a totally normal thing at my house now for dad to be napping, kids to be watching tv, and mom be doing squat jumps in the living room. It can feel awkward at first... You get used to it.

If you really want to change, then change. You control your body and what goes into it. You are important. NOW GO MAKE YOURSELF A PRIORITY. 

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Half Marathon Training and Stupid Shoulder, Update



18 weeks since surgery? Is that right? I'm at the point now where I really can't keep track anymore. It's kinda like when your kid turns 2... you stop referring to them as "24" months old. They're 2! So we'll just assume it's been at least 4 months (maybe more?) since surgery.

I still have so much pain, it's very frustrating. I try to work on mobility throughout the day and a little strength here and there, but I have so many other things to think about and I've spent so much time thinking about my stupid shoulder that I'm just OVER IT. I still don't sleep well, I can't reach the top shelf in my kitchen, and I would be completely worthless in a fist fight.

So anyway, that's where I'm at there...

Also... HALF MARATHON is 3 weeks from Sunday! What!? I've been keeping up with training mostly. I did really well until I started being more aggressive with crossfit and may have accidentally been a little too gung-ho... a couple weekends ago I did the Crossfit Open 17.5 workout. I had to modify because I can't do thrusters, so I did

10 rounds
9 front squats 65#
35 double unders

I didn't really think about the fact that I haven't squatted much over the past couple of months, especially with anything heavier than my 25# dumbell. So 90 total front squats with a 65# barbell was waaaaaaay too much considering I was supposed to run 8 miles the next day. OOPS.

So basically I was comatose for an entire week. I was THAT sore. I tried to run, don't get me wrong, but it was ugly and slow and I probably should have just rested.

Did I learn my lesson? HA. Let's just say... I'm a slow learner.

So here I am, on week 13 of my training and I can barely hit the 8 mile mark. Plus I'm losing half my toenails and my feet are basically two giant blisters. I like running, I really do. But I only like running when it is a 10k or less. I like running when it's only 2 days a week. I like running when the weather is perfect. I like running when I'm listening to music.

I do NOT like running when it is cold (65 or below), hot (75 or above), windy, rainy, or cloudy. I don't like running on a major highway because of traffic and I don't like running on our backroads because of dogs. I especially do not like running when the only option is a treadmill. Just NO. I don't like running when it's humid. I don't like running when I'm tired or hungry or thirsty.

Anyway, I didn't mean to go off on a tangent there... Where was I? Oh, half marathon training, right.

Today I will try to hit 8 miles again followed by some speed work. I am trying to hydrate reallllly well (last time I only had one glass of water the entire day... oops). But I'm super sore from crossfit (oops) so we'll see how it goes.

http://infographtastic.com/humor/humor-143059725636242943.jpg

Monday, March 27, 2017

17 Weeks Post-Surgery

I meant to post an update at 16 weeks but being me, I forgot. Tomorrow (March 28th) marks 17 WEEKS since surgery. I am only going to physical therapy once a week now and I am fairly certain tomorrow will be my last visit. Not that I don't need it anymore... but at this point, I'm a little worried about insurance! I haven't received a single bill from the physical therapist. Once those bills start rolling in... that'll be fun.

Mobility has improved in a lot of areas, but the one that I've struggled with the most has not improved in several weeks. My upward rotation has been just barely at 160 degrees for what seems like eternity... and that's when I'm lying on my back and gravity is doing the work for me. I'm sure the more I use it the better it will get. I'm so ready to do real pull-ups again it's not even funny... but I still can't hold my own weight hanging from the bar.

Things I CAN do:

Power cleans
Pre-surgery max: 145#
Current max: 65#

Front squats
Pre-surgery max: 150#
Current max: 65#

Assisted pull-ups. I've done 3 sets of 10 with a green band and that felt okay. I try to pause at the bottom for about two seconds between reps to help stretch out that shoulder.

Push-ups (from my knees). I have always had poor form on these... but now I have no choice but to keep my elbows in tight or it hurts! I can't do very many, maybe 5-10 at a time with long breaks in between sets.

Deadlift:
Pre-surgery max: 300#
Current max 88# (KBs, 2x44)

Bench press:
Pre-surgery max: 110#
Current max: I used a dumbell the other day, 25#!
*Side note: this is one of the many movements that did not improve in 3 years of lifting. I always blamed the shoulder... maybe I'll start seeing this improve more! Or maybe not...

It's funny how I get really excited about these movements when they are happening... but typing out the numbers is a little depressing! lol I have such a long way to go! I feel like I spend 10 hours out of every day just stretching my stupid shoulder, and every morning I wake up feeling like someone tightened it up to the max all over again. I still don't sleep well, I wake up in pain any time I move.

Things I can't do yet but I WILL:

OH stuff, all of it.
Snatches.
Handstand holds and handstand push-ups.
Ring dips.
Back squats.
Muscle-ups. !!!!!

I am so excited to be getting back! Slowly but surely I WILL get it all back. I HAVE TO. Muscle-ups, here I come!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Good News Feels Like Bad News

I am officially 12 weeks post surgery today. I had my follow up with my surgeon this morning. This is the first appointment I've had with him since my shoulder repairs. PLURAL: REPAIRS. Because I hadn't seen him since the actual day of surgery, I wasn't aware of all things that had been done to my shoulder. I had a general idea, but I didn't know what half of it meant. Today he pulled up my x-rays and did some much needed explaining, 90% of which I still didn't understand but...

My shoulder was in worse shape than we thought. He said for a standard labral repair, recovery time is about 4 months from the date of surgery, meaning patients can generally begin doing normal sports stuff (in my case, crossfit). If that were the case, I'd be almost done with physical therapy. But I didn't have a standard labral repair, I had a reverse "hagl" repair. I don't know why that's worse, but has something to do with where the tear actually is and what it tore from. Or something like that. I think.

Then of course I had a dislocated shoulder, so he had to put anchors in there to stabilize the rotator cuff. I have anchors in the front, the back, and on top. Eventually these will "disappear" and my body will naturally fill in those spots with bone. This is why my shoulder feels SO TIGHT. Because he tightened it. Makes sense.

Aside from that was the "divot" that had formed in my shoulder joint (He made a lot of golf references today--something of which I know nothing! HA). Because my shoulder had been dislocating repeatedly for so long (3 years), it had created a "pocket" in the joint. So not only was my shoulder dislocating, it would sometimes get caught in that "divot." So he had to fill in that divot with my own bone. I don't know where that extra "bone" came from; I'm not a doctor.

He ended up making 3 repairs to my shoulder in different locations. He said that kind of extensive shoulder repair doesn't happen very often. I'm so lucky! ???

The good news is that I am recovering as expected. He said he was not surprised that I still have a lot of pain and that I can't raise my arm on my own past eye level. He wasn't surprised that I feel like I'm not progressing very quickly. So I guess it's good that all that stuff is expected and I'm where I should be. He also said I should progress more in the next few weeks and if I don't, he'll want to put me under again and.... I didn't hear the rest of what he said because I was shaking my head no PLEASE NO.

The bad news (in my eyes...): I CAN'T DO CROSSFIT FOR ANOTHER 3 TO 6 MONTHS, possibly even more! When he told me that I felt like I was going to fall over. I THOUGHT I WAS ALMOST THERE! He said to work on core. I can run. I can do body-weight leg related stuff. BUT I CANNOT DO ANYTHING WITH MY SHOULDER other than what I do for physical therapy. He recommends I continue physical therapy for at least another 3 months.

So that's where I'm at right now. I am going to refrain from posting any more updates until I hit the 16 week mark. I'll continue to train for my half marathon, and I will continue going to the gym and doing ridiculous amounts of double unders and box jumps.

Recovery: I'M COMING FOR YOU.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Almost to 12 Weeks...

Well here's an update for all 2 of my fans (thanks husband and mom)...

I am a few days shy of the 12 week post-op mark. Goodness time is dragging! I have another follow-up with my doctor next Tuesday in which he will most likely send me to another 4 weeks of physical therapy. I made SO MUCH progress this week! Weeks 9-10 were so maddening. I felt like I was getting nowhere. And then this week, BAM, progress!! It feels so good! No, I still can't put my hair in a proper high pony-tail BUT I can give a [super soft] high five! Here are some things I can now cross off my goal list:

1. I'd like to be able to wash and fix my hair normally again. PLEASE! I can now mostly wash an fix my hair! High pony-tails are still hard, but I can do it (it just doesn't look very good..). I can, however, rock a low pony-tail, curl, straighten, and scrunch. BOOM.

2. Put on deodorant like a normal person...  YES THANK YOU! And shaving isn't quite as difficult anymore, either.

3. Sleep. Well... this one is about 50/50. On days I hit physical therapy pretty hard, I'm super sore and do not sleep well. Other days I take it easy and I sleep well enough.

4. I'd like to eliminate my fear of injury. I'm not worried anymore. Physical therapy HURTS, but it is definitely a different kind of pain and I'm so relieved.

5. Muscle ups. Still a long ways from this one.

6. Carry my son again. I love love LOVE being able to carry my big heavy sleeping baby to bed when he falls asleep on the couch. I still have to be careful but I can do it. Definitely my favorite thing. <3

Here's what's going on with fitness:

I am still training for my half marathon. I can run around 5 miles fairly easily. I don't think I'll have any problems staying with my training program!

I'm doing CrossFit again about 3 times a week on top of running. I modify 90% of the movements, which totally sucks, but it's better than nothing!

I am regaining muscle mass in my surgery arm! Physical therapy requires I do some weight training for my shoulder but it is suuuuuper light (I'm up to 3 lb dumbell curls! HA). So far I have had ZERO problems with this part of therapy. I still struggle big time with mobility, but that's normal (so they say). They keep telling me "We need to get you to 160 degrees by 12 weeks." This refers to how far back I can get my arm to go when I'm lying down. Last week I was at around 150, but since I made so much progress this week I think I'm almost there! We measure again on Monday.

And that's about it! I expect the next 4 weeks to show a TON of progress. I'll be back doing pullups and hang cleans and snatches and all the fun stuff in no time!

Oh, and for fun, here's a picture of my right [surgery] arm (top) versus my left arm (bottom):


Tuesday, February 7, 2017

10 Weeks Post Op

UUGHH Could time go any slower!?!? It has now been 10 weeks since surgery. Today I started my fourth week of physical therapy. I'm on schedule and doing well... but I'm nowhere near where I want to be!

The good news is that I get to start doing more this week. YAY! I mean really it isn't much (I'm up to 2 pound bicep curls...) BUT I did leave physical therapy looking like someone had mugged me in a dark alley, so that's gotta be a good sign. He did a lot of pulling and bending on my shoulder. I did a lot of yelling and some crying, and may have issued a few threats. I always leave feeling like they put my shoulder through a meat grinder. Must mean improvement!

In other news, I'm still training for my half marathon, slowly but surely. I'm up to 4 whole miles now! I'm also back to crossfit. Yea, you read that right! Basically all I can do is leg stuff and double unders, but it's so nice being back. I haven't missed the workouts (maybe a little...) but I have really REALLY missed working out with my group! It sucks having to modify everything, but I WILL get back to normal eventually!

In two weeks my physical therapist says I get to start doing the hard stuff (3 pound curls?) and I am SO excited. I asked if that meant I could practice muscle ups... he laughed at me before realizing I was serious. "Uhh, no..."

laughing monkey

Monday, January 23, 2017

Physical Therapy Week One

One down, 5 (or more...) weeks to go! I started physical therapy for my shoulder last week. It HURTS... but all I can think through the pain is THIS IS TEMPORARY! My PT asked me what my goals are. I named off 1,000. Here's a few:

1. I'd like to be able to wash and fix my hair normally again. PLEASE! And other normal day to day things, like putting on clothes and not needing help to get them back off again. My husband has to help me all the time to get my work clothes off (I doubt he minds, really). Don't even get me started on sports bras--uuuggghhh

2. Put on deodorant like a normal person... do you have any idea how hard it is to put deodorant under your left arm using your LEFT ARM. Just give it a try, go ahead, I'll wait. Also annoying: shaving.

3. Sleep. I thought this problem would be solved once I was free from the sling. NOPE.

4. I'd like to eliminate my fear of injury. I spent the past 3+ years worrying I was making it worse (I was) and not pushing myself because of it. Turns out that fear was probably a good thing. But now, since I'm all "fixed," I'd like to stop worrying about it. I want to push myself during workouts without fear of "making it worse."

5. Muscle ups. This is so vain. But I just think if I can manage getting some bar muscle-ups with a torn ligament and unstable rotator cuff, SURELY I'll be able to get some ring muscle-ups once I'm healed! COME ON PRETTY PLEASE!

6. Carry my son again. He's about to turn 6 and while he's small for his age, he still surpasses my 0.5 lb lifting limit. :( I miss being able to pick him up and give him hugs. I mean yes I still hug him and love on him, but so many times over the past 2 months he walks up to me and wants me to pick  him up, and I couldn't do it. I can't wait to get that back.

That's it for now! Basically I just want to get back what I had and MORE! Dreaming big here!


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

6 Weeks Post Surgery

I am so giddy I can hardly stand it! It has officially been 6 weeks since my HAGL repair! I am now DONE wearing the hideous black sling! Here is an update of what my future holds:

The doctor said that I can begin running and doing light exercising as long as it doesn't risk me falling (he doesn't know me very well--I risk falling any time my feet hit the floor).

I will begin physical therapy next week! I don't know how often I'll have to go, maybe twice a week? Who cares--I start NEXT WEEK! I will go for 6 weeks and then go back for another checkup with my surgeon. And then--they'll decide. He said it's likely I'll have to continue PT but at a higher intensity.

I can start lifting and doing CrossFit again in anywhere from 8-12 weeks, depending on how physical therapy goes. I'm kinda bummed but then again, this will allow me to focus on other things I've been neglecting, like cardio and my core. Because he said I could start running again as long as I'm safe, that's what I'll do! I have signed up for the OKC Half Marathon which is 16 weeks away! I've already put together my training schedule which starts (drum roll...) tomorrow! I've run the OKC Half before... but I didn't train for it last time. Oops. I promised to never ever make that mistake again! EVER.

So here I am, out of the sling and mentally preparing for what lies ahead!

I am SOOO excited to be sling-free!!! 
Look at that poor, sad little (HA) sling. It misses me already. I do not feel the same.

Cheers and AROO to the next 6 weeks! 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Where Have I Been!?

I happened to stumble across my own blog a few days ago and realized it has been almost TWO YEARS since I last posted. WHAT!? I can tell you exactly WHY I've been absent for so long: In June 2014, I took a job as a school librarian and BOOM, 100% of my time was devoted to serving my school and students. Then, in May of 2016, I was relieved of this position due to state budget cuts. Here I am, January 2017, with a different full time job that, at 5 o'clock each day, allows me to go home and just BE. No more spending every waking hour thinking about school and lesson plans and book lists and awards and grants and projects. Seriously, I had no idea how busy and stressed I was until I was no longer busy and stressed! And someday (when the budget crisis improves) I plan on going back to it. But for now... I love where I'm at! Especially since it allows to me focus more on fitness and writing!

So--what have I been up to gym-wise? Still at it! I've been doing CrossFit now for... almost 3 years? I've done a couple of team competitions, ran a few more 5Ks and 10Ks... But, right now, I'm actually in an arm sling. That shoulder injury from a long, long time ago? It turns out it was much MORE than just a deltoid strain. Apparently I suffered a HAGL tear. Don't ask me to get all technical and explain, cuz I have no idea. All I know is that I had a torn ligament that required surgery. And because I didn't have it fixed way back when, it caused major destabilization of my rotator cuff which also had to be fixed. I had my shoulder scoped November 30, 2016.

laying in a hospital bed

Before going under, the doctor told me that there was a chance that they would go in with the camera and find nothing. After years of pain (and never improving on any lift that required my shoulders), I was so afraid they would find nothing and I would just have to live with it. Good news was they found the problems and fixed them, bad news was that I would have to wear a sling for 6 weeks at which time I can start physical therapy to rehabilitate my shoulder. I'm at 5 weeks right now! My plan is to periodically update here on my progress with PT as well as getting back into CF.

There is so much more I could update here, but I'll save it since A) hardly anyone ever reads my blog anyway and B) it's really hard to type wearing a sling! Cheers!