Races are my motivation. Anytime I need that extra oomph, I sign up for a new race because I want to be fast, I want to win…even when that shouldn’t be the point of my races, especially at this point. At my last (and first) triathlon, I was so focused on trying to beat everyone that I didn’t really enjoy what I was accomplishing. I wanted to place even though it was my first and I had only really started training in January.
Today, the competitive bug bit me again when I checked up on my upcoming triathlon next weekend. I decided to see how big the pool is for my age group…and as of now, I am one of 5. My immediate thought was, I NEED to place. It would be such a shame if I didn’t, but after a few hours of thinking about it, I decided to refocus myself.
This race is my first open water race, and my second triathlon overall. What I should focus on is not freaking out in a lake swim, which is going to take me almost 20 minutes in open water filled with creatures (I am freaking out a little bit thinking about it now). I should focus on trying my hardest and doing it for myself and doing my self. I should focus on having fun and remembering to smile for the camera and have a good time! I should focus on breathing and pushing. I should focus on the other competitors who are there striving to do there best for whatever reason it is that motivates them.
The real competition is myself. I am doing this to get in shape, to be healthy, to feel confident and good about myself. I am doing it for the pride that comes with knowing what my body can accomplish.
This is about me and pushing my limits and striving for MY best.
Pippa Middleton doing a triathlon!
I am still working up the courage to put up progress pictures from last year to this year…it was very scary looking at those pictures today and seeing how I had let myself go and how I never want to do that again. A little encouragement will go a long way!
Phew it’s Sunday night already. How does that happen every single week? I know I’ve been getting bad about posting again, but I am going to try to be on here every couple of days. I think shooting for every day is just going to be unrealistic, and I don’t want to short change any posts.
I know I have advocated lifting heavier weights than you think, especially for women. You can lift more than the 5 pound dumbbells you think you’re supposed to be doing. My boyfriend prides himself on his weight loss and his muscles. And damn, does he look good and know what he’s talking about. So this weekend I asked him to do a weight lifting routine with me to make sure that I had proper form when I was deadlifting, squating, etc.
(Sidenote: The deadlift is one of the best exercises you can do, just make sure you have proper form. We used a mixed grip so one hand has an underhand grip and the other an overhand grip. Drop your ass, chest and eyes up and shins against the bar.)
But now, I feel like I’ve cheated you because I was certainly not lifting as heavy as I could. I felt like I was going a good job because I had worked up to a 65 pound deadlift after only being able to deadlift the bar to begin with. Well, then weight lifting boyfriend racked up 135 and said, you can totally do this. When I did (to my astonishment), he told me, you looked way too comfortable doing that. Here I was thinking well, it’s about being able to do 10 to 12 reps, which I could probably do at that weight. Instead, boyfriend suggested an alternative weight lifting program to follow: find your max, do one, then slowly drop the weight off your max and increase the amount of reps that you do as you go down. The way we did this workout was mindblowing and amazing.
As my boyfriend slowly racked more and more weight onto the bar to find my max, I was astonished at how far I had come from January 1, and I truly appreciated the comment my trainer said to me the other day that I looked like a different person. I have a long way to go to get a fit body, but I am getting there and that’s important. Everything is smaller, and I do mean everything (except my hair). This was encouraging and motivating and so amazing to do. However, if going for your max, I do suggest you have a friend there to help/spot you. Also, another little trick whenever lifting heavy weights, squat down after you do one so that way you don’t stand up too fast. I definitely say black at the corners of my eyes from standing up a little too fast (and not breathing enough during the lift, which is something I need to work on) but this helped immediately.
So now, for the grand finale: 200 pound deadlift
And some Game of Thrones humor for you:
Even though waking up this morning was not as rough as it normally is on a Monday, this day seemed to drag. To make it worse, there were a million sweets everywhere. I’m talking I walked in today and there were 3 cakes, 2 bags of bagels, and 2 boxes of donuts. It was all I could do not to eat all of them right there.
Confession: I have a MAJOR sweet tooth
Things like this were my downfall in college were there was always a dessert bar, so I always just had one piece…at every. single. meal. It was terrible and led to my expanding waistline. I love sweets, but I know I need to love them in moderation.
So, instead of a sweet a day, I am going to try to reinstate what I did a few months ago where sweets are only allowed on special occasions and the weekends. Therefore, I challenge whoever is reading this to try to limit their sweets intake. And no, not let’s start next week on a Monday. Instead, let’s be crazy and start it now. I am slightly regretting this as a pint of Haagen Daas straciatella gelato sits in my freezer, but I know it can wait until Friday, and I will be happy for it.
Also, all of my sweet cravings pushed me that much harder to go to the gym, which was very rewarding after my weight routine and a two mile fartlek workout.
In the meantime, check out this new local band that I am in LOVE with:
I did my very first 5k race today! For some reason, I skipped right over that when I did my triathlon. My cousin wanted to get back into running (after a small injury) and asked me to do this race with her. Even though she kicked my ass, I was grateful to do a short, fast run. I didn’t get the time I wanted, but my mile time has drastically improved and I finished with a 10:30 pace. When I started running (for real, training running) my pace was a 12 minute mile, so even this slight increase in time was a win for me. And it has helped me think of things I need to do to improve my endurance and time:
1. Try to wean off music. I don’t know how realistic this one is because I am so soooooo reliant on it.
2. More hill runs. This is much more achievable and I found a great hill loop near me. I think it’s time to add in a day a week of hill repeats.
That’s me on the right. This is not my best picture or outfit…or really look in general. My cousin pulled me aside for a picture about a minute after I crossed the finish line. I promise way better pictures soon (I suppose that’s the narcissus in me coming out, but hey, we all like looking good)
Now…I don’t normally post about random things, but tonight was episode 9 of 10 of the third season of HBO’s Game of Thrones. I have been a long time fan of the book series and have enjoyed the TV series, but one of the reasons I haven’t ever been able to reread the third book was tonight’s episode
The Red Wedding…wow. HBO did a few nice things that weren’t in the book, such as Robb’s pregnant wife and drawing out the slaughter so that each of the characters gets that one final moment on the screen. My heart literally hurt afterwards and I had goosebumps. Another appreciated affect was that the end credits had no music and were just silent. I had forgotten the brutality of the scene, the cold, hard truth of revenge and the bitter taste it left in my mouth and gut. It was moments like that that make me love and hate the way George R.R. Martin wrote his series. All in all, I think the episode did a great job, and I am very eagerly awaiting next week’s season finale.
1. What are your new goals for working out?
2. What did you think of the Red Wedding?