Pleasantly surprised

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I can’t decide if being so emotionally dependent on physical activity is a good thing or not.

Coming back from vacation, I gave myself a few days off from the gym to get normalized again. You would be surprised at how much three weeks away from home can throw a wrench into perceived normalcy. There was a TON of laundry to do, groceries to buy and errands to run… As any half present parent can tell you, there was also an issue of CHILDREN to reel back in… Attitudes had to be readjusted so much so that the first 48 hours were damn near spent in solitary. Have you ever been to the Post Office with a toddler holding in his poop so badly he’s screaming while the 5 year old looks on in disgust, rolling her eyes? Be jealous.

While the itch to run had grown significantly on vacation, it seemingly exploded upon returning home. I excitedly declared the house “safe” and loaded the kids up for a run. I got to the track, started to unload the stroller… and realized the front wheel was missing. OF COURSE.

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The rest of the day essentially followed suit. Forgot library books I needed to return, left half of the recycling at the house, traffic sucked… woe is me, right?

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It had been awhile since I have truly felt down/depressed here, and today took to cake. I surrendered to everything around me and I regretted an earlier agreement to work out with a friend later tonight. I thought about bribing my workout partner with Cinnabon – no shame. Fast forward a few pitiful hours, and I find myself in her garage… still not wanting to be there.

Having a workout buddy is a funny thing. The second the workout schedule is thrown out there, plates are racked and dumbbells set – your mind goes somewhere else. The gloominess of the day lifted, and though I hadn’t touched a weight in three weeks I felt good.

So good, that I hit a PR in my deadlift and I was able to get three sets of single pull ups. WHAT. Yeah. I’ll take that ANY day. Definitely uplifting. I love the elation that I get from lifting, in that it almost matches the runner’s high I have so missed.

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I recently signed up for a trail 5k, so we’ll see how that goes. Things are on the calendar for tomorrow, but I’m determined to make up the run I missed today.

Pleasantly surprised

Problems & Remedies

Clearly, I am the master of Irish Goodbyes. But hear me out.

Problem #1 :: Computer summons the demons from within, to eat away at it’s soul, consuming everything in it’s path. Husband checks it, deems it operational, until it is in my hands again, rendered useless. He then hooks up archaic computer to the TV in the master bedroom. Ideal, until I want to blog/research/not strain my eyes to focus on a 4 inch screen, and I have little hands reaching every which way, or a sleeping husband I’m clearly going to annoy… I even resort to using the kids’ bathroom stool for a seat. SO FUN.

Solution #1 :: Give up. Because sometimes, it’s just easier. In fact, there’s an excellent chance this post won’t even make it to publication! I opened Chrome about five minutes ago and I have yet to see a homepage. WHAT IS THIS, MS DOS????

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Problem #2 :: Not running. I can honestly say it’s been about a year (?) since I did a run out of pure enjoyment. Treadmill runs don’t count, because up until recently they were used for cardio purposes only and therefore STUPID. My 400 times, however, became quite impressive.

Solution #2 :: Blindly sign up for a 5k trail race for the middle of July, in Oklahoma, and drag the family with. Best idea ever.

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Problem #3 :: Clearly, we are still in Oklahoma.

Solution #3 :: I have nothing for this, except to daydream about everywhere BUT here.

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Problem #4 :: I wanted to freelance again, so very badly. Not for money, not for fame (ha!) but moreso out of pure enjoyment.

Solution #4 :: Did the impossible by bottling up my awkward, putting myself out there for a job, said all the right things – then got shut down. For those that know me, I do NOT do rejection well. It stings. Possible Future Solution 4a :: Become my own boss. Impress myself by bringing three dozen doughnut holes, land job, get paid, The End.

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Problem #5 :: The aforementioned TV is now protesting, by randomly throwing in horizontal squiggly lines across the border of the screen.

Solution #5 :: Nothing. I literally have nothing. Looks like I will be blogging through voice recognition and re-learning how to use the stupid WordPress app on my pointless phone, which is also shutting down in it’s own special way. Letters vanish, pictures are missing, and I have to re-start it numerous times a day. Before you ask, I have over 2.5G of memory left on it.

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Come to think of it ….. maybe I just shouldn’t meddle with technology. Or maybe I need something bulletproof. UGH.

P.S. I promise to return to my old self soon and not be so desperate in my future posts.

Problems & Remedies

Killing Time

(written on 03 FEB, during prep for GI scopes)

I am writing and posting this blog entry merely for the sole fact that it will keep me busy. I am by no means responsible in what I say due to the delirium brought on by starvation. Read at your own risk.

The household woke up at about 740ish. Typically by then I would be getting ready to cart of Kid 1 to school, but I decided since its not Finals week of Senior Year that I would keep her home. Plus, I have some crafts/activities planned, so it should be fun. Not “Chuck E Cheese” fun, but also not just parking them in front of the TV.

0815 :: Making the kids’ breakfast wasn’t nearly as painful as I thought it would be. A cup of tea for me. Whoo.

9:45 :: Busted out the play doh for the kids. BOOM. Best mom ever, and it gives me time to deep clean some stuff around the house since my ‘prep’ hasn’t technically started yet. Had a cup of chicken broth, and it immediately made my stomach hurt. Apparently the sodium in it was not welcome.

1130 :: I’m not as hungry as I thought I would be, but making the kids’ lunch was pretty painful. For my prep today I made it a point to give them food I am not necessarily a fan of, but I caught myself wanting to just lick the strawberry yogurt covered raisins.

1200 :: Bottle number one of Magnesium Citrate on the schedule. Aaaaaaaaand it won’t open. I briefly thought about going to my neighbor, but quickly realized everyone here works. It took all I had to open the bottle. #WeakSauce. Also, the drink is DISGUSTING and insanely sweet. Why can’t things be unflavored? It takes an embarrassing amount of time to drink just a mere ten ounces of it.

1205 :: Immediately start burping like crazy and nausea sets in. I’m internally freaking out a bit, because the doctor’s office doesn’t say anything about puking this up against your will. Keep busy, keep distracted.

1300 :: Random nap time, for about 30 minutes.

1400 :: THIS SHIT IS AWFUL. Second (and final) bottle of Magnesium Citrate. Instead of shooting the ten ounces of melted Lemonhead laxative, I dilute it into two separate bottles totaling 50 ounces each. I’m giving myself 30 minutes to drink it all. To pour salt on the wound, the kids are snacking on trail mix and applesauce, and my darling daughter is offering to split it all with me. So sweet, so young, so naïve.

1430 :: Ok, totally finishing these bottles in the next 15 minutes.

1445 :: By the hour. Totally by the hour.

1500 :: I resorted to calling the Doctor’s office to see if I totally messed this up by not finishing the ten ounces in time. She said to take my time. I wanted to kiss her through the phone.

1700 :: Kid’s dinner time. The upside to all the nausea is definitely that I have zero desire to eat. Which is good, because 24 hours ago I couldn’t fathom not eating for longer than two hours.

1807 :: Hunger hit like a sum bitch. OMG.

1853 :: Fixed a warm bowl of chicken bouillon. Delicious. I wish I was kidding but that stupid Magnesium Citrate left a nasty, sickly sweet metallic taste in my mouth.

1855 :: I keep daydreaming about my next meal. Not sure what I’ll have. It’s suggested I eat something easy to chew, as coming out of sedation might make it hard to masticate. I think they underestimate my hunger. Ideally, a huge steak, sweet potato and bacon wrapped asparagus…

1903 :: My bloating is ridiculous. You would think that being on laxatives all day would keep one feeling slim and thin; not the case.

2000  :: Kids in bed. This is where it gets hairy – I definitely require a snack before bed so this will be quite painful.

2038 :: I would literally lick a stamp for sustenance at this point. Took a shower and head to bed, for the sake of making time pass.

Killing Time

Digestive Debacles

I’m not sure when I last was complaining about stomach issues, but here I am yet again.

I’m hoping my use of GIFs will distract you from the real problem at hand.

Slight recap, without the details: After having my daughter, my digestive system decided to rally against me, after years of apparent neglect and abuse (sarcasm, if you can’t tell.) For however long, I did what everyone else would do – ignored it and put up with it. After I figured out that this wasn’t normal, four years ago I decided very hesitantly to ditch the Zebra Cakes and beer, taking up a gluten free, stomach friendly diet. Yes, it was painful, and NO I don’t care what anyone says, nothing gluten free tastes ‘as good as the real thing.’ Please stop saying that. Going gluten free has been working well for the most part, until about four years ago. In fact, I’ve blogged about sporadic stomach issues, and I didn’t realize I was having these issues for so long until I searched my blog for them about five minutes ago.

Whenever my stomach started to hate me, I chalked it up to various things. “Maybe I had a slip up” or “Maybe I have allergies” etc. My mom is deathly allergic to certain oils (sesame, vegetable), my aunt, cousin and grandma on my mom’s side have a myriad of stomach issues as well. Apparently, I am not bionic, which is bullshit. When we first moved to Oklahoma (21 months ago, OMG) I started asking the doctors here for allergy blood testing, as well as whatever else they could find. If you know me at all,  you will find this all incredibly ironic. I HATE going to the doctors. I literally wound up with a hole in my leg due to MRSA because I didn’t want to go to the ER for the longest time.

However, when you start missing life on account of your stomach, it is not fun. I’m 29, and shouldn’t have to mentally memorize where bathrooms are in various places. Note to self: if you ever open a department store, have restrooms in the back like Home Depot, not just in the front like Kohl’s and Target. As I type this, my stomach hates me. 48 hours ago, I felt like I could have done a Spartan Dodgeball Triathlon Crossfit Super Marathon 5k.

After about 18 months of fighting the doctors, I finally received a referral to a Gastroenterologist here in town. A good friend once mentioned to me that “you HAVE to be your biggest advocate” and I certainly wish I would have pressed the issue harder. Upon meeting the GI, I was at ease immediately – it also helped that he closely resembled an Armenian Jimmy Buffet. After going over symptoms over the past 6 years, from the OBVIOUS to mouth sores and bleeding gums, he recommended further testing. Yep, scopes. At freaking 29. So sorry, so old; I should start eating supper at 430 and bickering with my husband over Wheel of Fortune while knitting on the couch (this, sadly, doesn’t sound too bad!)

This all happens Wednesday, which means I fast and ‘prep’ on Tuesday. They wanted me to go in this morning, but that would have meant fasting on Superbowl Sunday (LOL NO.) Plus, I have wisdom tooth… teeth? issues and it hurts just to eat. Of course it does, because life is just so awesome like that!!

Luckily I just got Netflix (did you guys know about this!? so awesome) and I feel into the wormhole that is Always Sunny in Philidelphia. Not sorry.

Digestive Debacles

Myriad of Stupidity

I mentioned yesterday that I was going to get my body fat read this morning. Unfortunately for me, this meant fasting until I got there (NOT EVEN COFFEE, BTW) and I had the “great” idea of hitting the gym afterwards. I clearly wasn’t thinking, because WHO goes to the gym on an empty stomach. I don’t do anything on an empty stomach, let alone without coffee. That is basically the only thing to know about me. Rule #1 :: coffee. I figured I had food in my gym bag, so I loaded up little man and left. I could show you a picture of the annoying little graph, but I’ll spare you the jigsaw and just say I weigh 131 with 28% body fat. 37 lbs. of fat weight, 94 of fat free. I am NOT a fan of these numbers, by any means. I go monthly, so in February I expect something different. Spoiler alert: I did not have food in my gym bag, and I hit the gym anyway.

 

So, in keeping with the “how dumb can Natalie be today” theme, I hopped on the treadmill to do some speed work. I did a half mile warm up, then SIX by 400s. Mind you, I have not run regularly for about a year, let alone anything remotely close to speed work. Literally the craziest I get is at Sams, running to the last Talenti jar of Chocolate Chunk, because TALENTI’S. So there I am, running 400s and I’m sure I resembled a camel on a hamster wheel, because it felt ridiculous. I did a progression run, “just to see” what I could do (again, stupid.) 8:20, 8:06, 7:53, 7:35, 7:24 and finally 7:13. That last one hurt but it felt oh so good to be doing this again.

I felt relatively fine after the run so my stupid little brain went, “OMG LET’S DO LEGS!” so I did. I had a tight timeline because the childcare maxes out at two hours, but I managed to get in squats (also stupid because I used the heavier bar without realizing it but wheeee unexpected  and unprepared for PR’s!), leg curls, extensions, leg press and lunges. Was definitely spent by the time the workout was done.

Anyway, it’ supposed to hit about 75 here today, so I’ll at least be a warm idiot… hiking with her kids… because she’s a glutton for punishment fan of super cool adventures!!!!!!

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Myriad of Stupidity

Sunday Already?

Running has picked up significantly over the past week, something I’m proud to finally be looking forward too again. Unfortunately, the Brooks Pureflows had to go back. As always, the fit was perfect, the shoe was lightweight, and the one complaint I had, led me right back to the store after a two mile run. Apparently, Brooks changed up the style of the Pureflows and added a hard elastic over the top of the foot. I believe there is supposed to be a little bit of give, but mine did not. No matter how I tied the shoes (again, over the course of two miles, so it was super annoying to deal with) my toes still went numb and the elastic made the top of my foot itch. I came home and inspected my old Pureflows, and was surprised to find the same band there – but constructed of a stretchy knit material that had significant wiggle room. Just odd. The shoes would have been perfect, given the band issue.

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Hard to see the comparison here…  it truly pained me to send the Brooks back! I wanted to try the rest of the Pure line, but was completely turned off by the plastic band across the foot, which every kind had. However, I’m glad to report that my feet are happy in some new Mizuno Wave Riders. Also, I apologize if the whole band issue is something that’s taken the running community by storm and is relatively old news – I’ve been out of the loop for AWHILE. Like, over a year.

Anyway, over the course of the last few days, I’ve had a mix of cross training (leg day, shoulders, bicep/tricep) but my favorite had to be my time spent at a local boxing gym. The boxing world is completely unknown to me, but the guy who owns the gym is Grady Brewer, who won a reality show about boxing and is basically a complete (but very humble) badass. It was pretty neat, and I’m hoping to maybe take some lessons over the summer. Little man enjoyed himself immensely!

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Lastly, I decided to pain the yoga nook upstairs, which was a BRILLIANT move the day after boxing. I am on the last coat now and should be finished this week. How lucky are those who can knock this out in a day… not so much a reality in this house with kids, pets, errands, Army life and whatever else life throws into the mix. I’ll be making this room into more of a functional office space, considering I spend more time (sadly) on the computer than a yoga mat. Some teal and golden accents, and this space will be pretty cozy.

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Tomorrow I get back on the speed work. I cannot remember the last time I did this, and to add salt to the wound I’m also going to get my body fat read. All of this followed up with leg day, so Wednesday DOMS should be absolutely brutal. Expect a full report on tomorrow’s embarrassment.

Sunday Already?

The Demise, Destruction; Recovery and Rebuilding.

Where to even begin…

I will start off by saying 2014 is a year I fully intend on NEVER repeating, not even in the most remote sense. I promise this isn’t your typical “OMG totes less sugar in 2015!!” resolution. Looking back on the majority of the year, I come to the sick realization that I can only remember bits and pieces, like a stranger looking in on a foggy memory. Though I do remember happy memories (thank you TimeHop), I would be amiss if to ignore the elephant in the room – I remember a lot of misdirected anger, sadness, and even resentment. Towards little things, towards big things. I would feel it at first, like a tiny jelly bean, just nudging me inside mentally. One event after another, my mind and mouth too stupid to actually SAY something; what I’m feeling, anything, because that’s too girly or whatever excuse I had on hand at the time. For the sake of ‘vague-blogging’ you can guess it had to do with personal life, let’s just get that admission out of the way. Eventually that tiny jelly bean would tailspin out of control until I basically resembled a shell of my former self and I admittedly threw. in. the. fucking. towel. In every sense of the word, I gave up. But others did NOT give up on me, even when things seemed the most bleak.

Friends that meant well, knowing the nonsense I was going through, would often call for play dates or simply talking it out. Temporarily ‘fixed’, I was (and still very much am) eternally grateful for them, until I needed to whine to them over monotonous ramblings, yet they sat there with every ready advice and a listening ear. Again, eternally grateful. Unfortunately this meant ignoring other friends, as I closed myself up to everyone else, even family (gulp.) – especially those that didn’t deserve it. In 2014 I learned who and who I could not trust. It took a lot of mental energy to simply make it through the day, and even MORE energy to look around and tearfully realize the people I thought would be there, in fact, were not. Without sounding too dramatic, I have learned to keep things at arm’s length now, and whatever my bubble is made of, had to grow a bit stronger. But, my family is intact, and stronger than ever; something I did not picture last summer. Thank GOD for forgiveness (so much of this), laughter, tears and my husband. Seriously the man deserves a medal.

Eventually came the breakthrough. Aren’t those wonderful? LOL… like when you’re watching a show and you realize the antagonist is actually the golden boy everyone loves, or you’re building a STUPID Ikea cabinet and you finally freakin’ realize they gave you extra knobs, those funny Swedish jerks! I started working out again (read: not running), gained a cat, let certain extracurricular go, stopped going to church (yes. yes. I know how this sounds…)and found a couple of *new and improved!!* friends that I still cling too like leeches. Long sob story short, I finally started being a normal, functioning adult.

Late 2014 came to be even better, because the happiness continued. The communications came through clearer, and  everything ebbs and flows the way it should. So thankful for that. If you feed something, it will grow – you decide what you feed; your anger or your happiness. I will not lie, there are days where I mope around snapping at the poor dog for breathing loudly; but more often than not, things are good.

I finally knew I was coming around to being my former self when I spent four hours driving around town looking for running shoes. The further away the shoes slipped out of my reach, the more defeated I became. After the third sorry excuse for a sporting good store I went too, I sat in the car, and proclaimed loudly that, “I JUST WANT TO RUN.” Boom. Yet another layer of the icky 2014 was shed, just like that. I have new shoes, and have run happily a few times this year, and am happy to see where 2015 takes me.

Running wise, I have a lot of work to do. I am eyeing some half marathons in the area, lusting over some trail races, but nothing is set in stone just yet.

I also realized recently I missed writing. Even when things were tough and weird and spiteful, I would write, momentarily feeling better. I have toyed with the idea of blogging again for a few weeks, and here I sit, 768 words later. So thanks for making it this far, and hopefully I’ll give you substantial reading material (hi mom.) littered with PR’s and many race recaps. Or not. Smile Back to the Old Self I go!!!!

The Demise, Destruction; Recovery and Rebuilding.