“For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’
And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something. ”
So it’s certainly been awhile since I’ve written, or even logged in for that matter. I suppose I’ve been suffering from a bit of writer’s block… Not to mention I’ve been doing a lot of soul-searching that I just hadn’t felt like sharing yet.
Of course, the fact that I haven’t been writing doesn’t mean I haven’t continued my thriver-workout-a-holic-badass lifestyle. Almost immediately on the coattails of the Ultra Beast, I ran the Hartford Half Marathon and finally OFFICIALLY broke 2 hrs- maintaining a solid pace the entire way through (a special thanks to Adam for pacing me, even though he still won’t admit to it). It was a pretty satisfying way to end the season and redeem my DNF (not that it actually needed redeeming) Since then I’ve taken a bit of a rest from the racing scene. I even scaled back on working out for a little while and gave my body a well needed break- I know- shocking, but even I know better than to keep pushing when you’re body is beaten down.
While on hiatus from kicking my butt to the extreme, I had some time to enjoy some alternatives to gym exercise like snowboarding and snowshoeing. This is the first year since I got my snowshoes that we have actually had enough snow to use them! I was completely stoked to test them out, and found that they were indeed as good a workout as I had heard. One hour walking in those things and my hip flexors were on fire! The views walking in the freshly fallen snow could not be beat though!!! Adam and I also managed to sneak in a few fun runs in the snow… my favorite to date was running in a snow flurry (ok, storm...)at sunset with the yellow dog and our headlamps (love my headlamp!!!!).
Since getting back on track, I have actually been doubling up on Insanity and P90X on my days off. I’ve found that since one is primarily cardio/interval and the other primarily lifting, they actually compliment each other really well. When I’m especially sore or run down sometimes I’ll just do one or the other… or skip out altogether. I’m getting better at listening to my body and not stressing about taking rest time. After all, it’s not like I’m working a regular desk job. The days I work, I run all over the hospital, including trekking up and down stairs all day. Add in the stress of being responsible for the welfare of 20 or more patients, and it’s completely understandable why I’m so wiped when I get home. That’s why I don’t try to sneak in workouts after getting home anymore. I’m not willing to risk another injury.
That’s not the only recent change in my attitude. With the new year, I’ve been really trying to cut myself more slack. I’m at a point where I feel like I have worked really hard to get to where I am - financially, emotionally, and physically. I have a good career, a nice house, a great family, and a loving boyfriend (oh yeah, Adam finally got the help he needed and we are back together, not to mention closer for having gone through it). I’ve accomplished things that I never would have dreamed I could, but any enjoyment has always been short-lived. I’m the type of person who is always seeking to challenge myself, and while it can be a good thing- it also has a tendency to rob any chance of contentment.
In less than 2 weeks I am going to turn 30. Hitting this milestone has really given me a chance to reflect. While I am grateful for everything I have in life and that I have accomplished; I am tired of pushing myself so hard. I think it’s time to stop getting through the day, month, or year and start really living and embracing each moment. It’s the way I used to live before. I deserve to be happy, if for no other reason than because EVERYONE deserves to be. This year I have made a commitment to myself to be happier. That not only means resting and taking breaks when my body needs it, but also committing to make time to do the things that make me feel happy and fulfilled.
Before I bought a house, I loved to travel. I used to save my money and every 3 months I would go wherever I could get to on a budget of $1000 (yes, flight and hotel- and it was totally doable). I saw Ecuador, the Philippines, Ireland, Bermuda, St. Thomas, Barbados, Dominica, Mexico, and Egypt. For my birthday, I wanted to do something special (but still on a budget… after all I still have a mortgage to pay!). I looked at a bunch of all-inclusive resorts, but then I realized that sitting by a pool or on a beach drinking is not my idea of a relaxing vacation. In fact, it’d drive me crazy. I’m happiest when I’m in the woods either running or hiking; so instead I booked a trip to Zion National Park. We are going to stay in a little log cabin- with a fireplace!- and I’ll get to do all the hiking my little heart could desire.
I have a confession to make… For all the traveling I’ve done, I’ve never been to a single national park. Adam and I have talked about starting to visit them, but this will be our first one together (Adam has seen several, but Zion is his favorite). I am super excited because I have always wanted to see one, AND this one just happens to be only hours away from the Grand Canyon! … Not to mention Arches National Park and Bryce Canyon are also nearby. The excitement of a little kid at Christmas does not even come close to describing how thrilled I am about this trip. It is EXACTLY how I want to ring in my 30th year of life.
I am so glad to finally being taking time to enjoy the things I’ve so hard worked for. I know that I am the only person responsible for bringing joy to my life, and this year I choose to be HAPPY- even if in this case it means spending money and spoiling myself a little.
PS. For any other ladies out there who are interested in traveling but lacking a traveling companion, I stumbled across this tour group called Adventures in Good Company which offers adventure trips for women in all kinds of exotic locations across the globe. I am definitely considering a future trip with them as it looks like an excellent opportunity to meet some cool ladies AND experience some new places.