Most of you know the outgoing, humorous, incredibly funny and witty side of me. I’m often talkative and social and happy to spend time with friends and get to know strangers. I don’t shy away from challenges and I love being around people, making jokes, making people laugh…mainly myself…. But…and this is something that only a very few understand about me, I’m also introverted and a loner at times (and by loner I mean solely taking care of my kids and being home with my family cause lets face it, being a parent means never having a moment alone). ;) Its hard to explain how and why I get into these moments of self-prescribed isolation, but usually they only last a day or two. When I get stressed, like I have been lately, it lasts longer. I no longer feel like being around people, being witty, forcing myself to socialize or put on a false front. It’s funny, cause when I am quiet, friends ask me whats wrong. Usually nothing is, sometimes I just get tired of myself and don’t feel like being loud and obnoxious. Ha ha! The danger is that I get used to the routine and its very difficult for me to reach out and shake off the “lone wolf syndrome”. Nick, the hubs, says I care way to much what others think and take things too personally. Which in turn pushes me further into my isolation. Its me. I can’t blame anyone for my actions. They are my own. But sometimes its having that one friend reach out and remind you that you’re needed, that the outside world is fun and worth participating in. I don’t know if its the kids heading off to school and its just me and the little guy at home (and he’ll be heading to preschool next week), if its nerves for this upcoming Crossfit event where I have stepped way out of my comfort zone and athletic ability to compete with legit professional athletes (a decision I made because I took something too personally), or if its a feeling of loss for the quality time I’ve had with my friends and family as this season of the year is always so very very busy for everyone. I know I need to shake it off. I know I need to break this weird funk I’ve been in for nearly a week. But its so easy to just stay quiet, to stay invisible.
I realized I forgot to write about my second crossfit competition experience which was a partner competition! FORGIVE ME!!! Okay, really, I know you guys don’t particularly care about this stuff like I do but I’m still going to document it for future reference.
“The Duo” at Crossfit Artis.
My partner: David (a guy who puts up with my awful jokes every morning at 5:30am and still decided to be my partner.)
It was a 2 day event. Saturday and Sunday with the top 3 teams competing in the final Event.
Event 1: Both partners Squat clean every 15 seconds for 6 minutes (Men’s weight 135#, Women’s 95#) then if you complete all 24 squat cleans you have the 7th minute to complete as many hand release lateral barbell burpees as possible. I got 27. Team “Snatch and Sniff” (that’s me and David) came in 2nd in that event.
Event 2 and 3: Partner 1 (that was me) runs 1000m while Partner 2 (David) does as many squats possible for 15 seconds at the start of every minute until I get back then we switch. I got back in the fastest time out of all the heats and just so happened to tag him as the start of the minute began so I immediately started squatting. My judge was awesome, pushed me to get at least 16 squats. Event 2 is fastest total time for both runs.
Event 3 is total reps air squats. We won those events.
Event 4: Men will go first and will have 6 minutes to complete:
3 Deadlifts, 225# 3 Pullups 6 DL 6 PU 9 DL 9 PU….And so on until death. Just kidding, only until their 6 minutes is up.
Women will go second and will have 6 minutes to complete:
1 Deadlift, 155# 1 Pullup 3 DL 3 PU 5 DL 5 PU…. And so on until their 6 minutes has ended.
I think I ended up getting through 1/3/5/7/9 and 4 reps into 11 of the deadlifts but I’m pretty sure I blacked out during this one so I don’t know for sure.
That was the end of Day 1. David and I were sitting in first place. Obviously. (Just kidding, I was very surprised. You know, cause David is a pansy. KIDDING! He’s kinda badass….kinda.)
Day 2!!! Feeling good! A little under pressure but, hey, that’s what competitions are about right?
50 Single Unders
40 KB Swings (1.5/1) For non-crossfitters it was 55lbs/35lbs
30 Shoulder to Overhead (115/75)
20 Sit ups
5 Wall Walks
I watched teams completely break down during the first 2 heats (We were 3rd heat) and while I wasn’t too worried about the workout, I started getting super scared….I mean, people were STRUGGLING with this. Fastest time I had to beat by the time I went was 6:10. Okay, I can do that, right?!??! YOU KNOW IT! 5:15!!!!!! We got 1st in that event too.
Top 3 teams competed in the Final Event……a 1 rep max snatch. My worst olympic lifting skill. Craptastic. Managed 105# but just wasn’t enough to make the top of the podium.
We placed 2nd overall and I have to say, I was tickled with that. :) It was fun, well-organized, and my partner was pretty fricken awesome. My family and friends came to cheer us on and take loads of pics and videos. Seriously, so amazing and I was so sore the following days, I hated crossfit. Like, really hated it for a few days. I got over that though. Back to training hard for my next comp over Labor Day weekend. YIKES!
I SURVIVED!!!! On Saturday, June 14th I competed in my first ever crossfit competition in the scaled division. It was an all day deal with what ended up for me being 7 workouts in one day. Holy, Crapballs. Here’s how my day went: Got to Offut Airforce Base in Omaha around 7:15am to get checked in and first WOD started at 8:30ish?? Said a few prayers.
WOD 1: 1 minute of max push ups, 30 seconds rest, 1 minute max sit ups then straight into a 2 mile sprint. I did 38 push ups (I think??) and 42 sit ups (??) then ran the 2 miles in 13:26ish….FASTEST. MILES. EVER!!! Still not sure that was a legit 2 miles. Some said it was shorter, some said longer….I’ll never know, I wasn’t wearing my running watch.
I was in the first heat all day so I watched the rest of my CFE family compete in their divisions. Next WOD started around 10am. Had a little time to stretch, eat a bite of banana and half a protein shake. Stomach was super nervous. Said more prayers. Not to win, but to just do my best and give God the glory.
WOD 2: 9 minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible in allotted time) 40 Single Unders, 30 American KB swings, 20 Box jumps 20″ box, 10 push ups. Rinse. Repeat. I managed 3 rounds and 48 reps. I did box jumps where a lot of people did step ups and got higher scores. The downside of going first heat I suppose, you don’t see what other competitors are doing differently to gain ground.
Nick and the kids showed up. Kids ate all my food I brought for the ENTIRE DAY then got sub sandwiches, smoothies, and chips. I still couldn’t eat, too nervous.
WOD 3: 7 minutes with 135# barbell on the back and back squat it every 15 seconds NEVER LETTING GO OF THE BAR OR DROPPING IT…….
Oh….Dear…..Lord….Help….Me….I didn’t drop it, never skipped a squat (they allowed one skip), and managed to not die a gruesome death from backsquats/holds. Ouch. Also, I looked up towards the end, locked eyes with a team-mate standing in my direct line of vision and think I scared the crap right out of him. Maybe it was my red eye glowing…..
Top 10 made it to semi finals. I was 6th. SIXTH!!!!
Semi finals consisted of 2 rounds (5 minute time cap) 10 pull-ups, 10 Ground to Overhead at 75# (snatch or clean and jerk it was up to us, I went with C&J), 200m run. I finished in 4:53. Proceeded to hold down my throw up that was trying to say hello to everyone. Later I laughed about it.
Made finals…..WHAT??? Yep, made it to the top 5. Said more prayers that I’d just survive and find a way to give Him all the glory.
Finals WOD: 1 round of 10 GHD sit ups, 10 pull-ups, 10 Ground to Overhead at 75#, 200m run. Repeat 2 more times with a minute rest in between, cutting the last finisher each round until the top 3 are left. I finished 3rd all 3 rounds. Ended up on the “podium” placing third.
I. Was. FLOORED! Literally and figuratively. I seriously wanted to die from exhaustion. Did I mention I could barely eat all day from nerves and the fear of throwing up my food mid-WOD? Probably not the best move but I made it.
1. I like competing but am not super competitive with others in that I want them to fail. I actually almost didn’t pass this one gal in the finals cause I felt bad about it.
2. Kindness and courtesy makes a big difference in how your day is going to go. This goes for every aspect of life, not just athletic related things. It’s also a way to share God’s grace with others through your actions.
3. I desperately want to try competing RX sometime but I have to work on my ring dips, muscle ups, double unders (just get more efficient at them), get stronger with the heavier lifts, and probably a few other things. I know, I’m not perfect. Don’t act so surprised.
4. Best part of my day was spending it with friends. Some competed, some just came to cheer us all on. It was seriously awesome! Now I’m sore and fatigued more so than after my Ironman but I’d do it again next weekend. I’m a glutton, you know it.
Hey people of the world (mainly parents but not limited to the rest of humankind), do you find yourself in a constant battle of chores? Do you seem to ALWAYS have something that needs to be done? Vacuuming up dog hair? Cleaning the counters AGAIN? Picking up your kids’ shoes, toys, crayons, dirty clothes, clean clothes, food wrappers, etc….. for the BAZILLIONTH time in a day? I feel your pain.
So here I am, spending another day staring at my disaster of a house after attempting to have some sense of order by putting stuff away and cleaning. I cook, I clean dishes, I vacuum up the ridiculous amount of dog hair from having 2 golden retrievers and a lab in the house, I mow the lawn, do laundry, clean toilets (with 3 humans of the male species living with me this is a gross undertaking), and on top of it all take care of my 3 kids and 3 dogs and still find energy to be pleasant with my hubs. Do I have feelings of frustration sometimes at all those loving little faces in my life? You betcha! Do I feel under appreciated sometimes? SOMETIMES?! Okay, it’s not often as I consider it my job but there are days…. But yesterday while mowing the lawn after stopping 20 times to break up fights between my 3 kids, catch 2 of the dogs that the aforementioned kids let out of the house into the front yard, and answer the phone, I was fuming. I was hot under my collar and it wasn’t just the hot sun beating down on my gloriously muscular traps. (See facebook post that my friends all made fun of me for.) I was pissed off. Thinking to myself “I do all this stuff, I bust my butt, take care of the house, the kids, the dogs, the bills, buy groceries, do pretty much everything dealing with hearth and home and family, save the small, miniscule thing of making money, and I don’t get any appreciation.” Okay, not true. My husband is awesome. Like ridiculous, makes you want to puke, makes other guys look bad, kind of awesome. He’s great, like seriously always says thanks for everything I do, helps when I ask and sometimes when I don’t and above all he works 7 days a week to provide us with a life of comfort and security. Does that stop me from being grouchy and ungrateful? Nope. I’m a jerk. But here’s the enlightening moment I had recently. There are times and will be times when I (and you) will do a crap load of things and get absolutely zero recognition for it. If you’re a parent this is a minute by minute occurence. But I remember once reading that while things will never be even, or fair, or reciprocated to the degree you have given and done we don’t do it for the notoriety, the recognition, the praise. Or at least we shouldn’t. We should solely do it for the glory of God. Am I right? No matter what we do for others, we will never get what we deem the right amount of thanks and appreciation for doing it. And most of the time we feel as though the people we do it for aren’t deserving. Instead, do it for God cause He is! Does God love me more for mowing the lawn? Probably not, although I’m sure the view from heaven looking down at those gorgeous lines make Him smile. But does my being a servant to others make Him happy and give Him glory? Absolutely! So when I get annoyed and frustrated and start feeling sorry for myself that I do and do and do for everyone and get zero appreciation I’ll try REALLY HARD to remember that I’m doing it for God and try REALLY HARD to be joyful about it. And honestly, it does make serving others a whole lot better when you have that shift in perspective. Can I get an amen? ;)
Summer Vacation Survival Plan: For the “Stay at home Parent” (Grab a bottle of vino whilst you read)
Hello there, friend. Do you find yourself at home this summer with school-less children? Are you currently debating on which alcoholic beverage to consume to help numb the torture that is your children’s incessant whining about boredom? Are you looking for advice on how to make it through these hot, summer months filled with beligerent and ungrateful offspring? If so, go here, here or here for helpful advice. If not, just get out. Don’t even talk to me.
So summer vacation begins Friday May 23rd….
And my grocery list dramatically changed. (Funny how wine, vodka, and rum were at the top of the list…I’m kidding….yeah, kidding…)
As most of you know, I’m a stay at home mom. Now I’m not saying I have it hard as I only have 3 kids. BUT according to amassed statistical research (I have no idea, btw) millions (okay, hundreds) of parents were polled at what is the toughest number of children to raise. Guess what? It was 3! Families with 2 kids is man on man defense, so not too bad and more than 3 is a walk in the park (parents who have 4 or more kids feel free to weigh in and tell me how false that is. I sympathize, truly). So here I am, kids home from school for approximately 3 months…. 3 MONTHS!!! *sweating and cracking open a bottle of Cabernet* I know there will be an overwhelming amount of whining about boredom, and “why we can’t go anywhere”, or “how come we can’t go to the zoo AGAIN?!” and “what can we do?!??!”. This challenge makes me want to sign up for every half Ironman, marathon, triathlon just to avoid the next 3 months of anticipated terror that I have no doubt my beautiful, sweet, loving monsters…er…children will put me through. So, like everything in my life from workouts to meal planning, I decided to make a plan. (The chance of it working is slim…but I will forge on!)
Weekly activities we can do:
- A different Park
- Walmart, kids love grocery shopping. ::insert sarcasm::
- $2 movies at Marcus! WOOHOO!!!
- VBS for Hailey and 2 summer camps for the boys (just mornings for a week, I’m not shipping them to a camp for a month….unless they have those? Do they have those for 5 and 4 year olds?!?)
- Mall play place on rainy days
- Backyard-sprinkler and sandbox. (Kids are never to old for sand castles…right?!)
- Library (My kids being quiet? This could be bad….really really bad…)
- A pool, although this can be more stressful trying to keep track of my crazies…I mean, sweet, kind, well-behaved children…
- More parks…..kids love parks.
- Play dates with friends (My kids are angels so feel free to put in your requests now!)
- Rainy day activities: play-doh (yeah right, the dogs end up eating it and throwing up), crafts (Thank God for Pinterest), dress-up, toys (we have thousands of toys the kids apparently don’t know about), board games, coloring/painting, and playing “Help mom clean the house for cash! Yeah!!”
- Go to family cabin/lake for a day of sand, swimming and fun! This will probably be the most frequent along with parks, I mentioned the various parks, right?
Now that I have a plan I feel slightly calmer…either that or it’s the bottle of wine I drank…I mean, glass, the glass of wine….
My list of helpers I may end up enlisting: Morgan (First name Captain), Jack (Daniels), Robert (Mondavi), Kendall (Jackson), Jose (Cuervo). When I shout “Assemble!” they will form the Avengers initiative dubbed “Cocktail”. Let’s pray I won’t need to call on such brave soldiers….and that I survive this summer…………………
I know what you’re thinking. “Megan, there is no way in heck that I could do crossfit! Are you CRAZY!?!” A little bit, yeah (I do have 3 kids, 3 large dogs and a husband). Okay, here’s the deal, crossfit CAN be hard and it typically IS hard, just like everything else worth doing. HOWEVER, when you first get started you don’t go balls to wall lifting super heavy weight nor are you expected to be able to do a bazillion pull-ups, not even one if you can’t. Your workouts are scaled. And the great thing is there are plenty of crossfitters that scale! Myself included! My coach says “The way to get good at crossfit, is to do crossfit!” And I agree! Nothing can prepare you for the variations, versatility, and all out butt kicking you get with a crossfit workout. Now you all know me, I do triathlons, marathon (just one, thank you), half marathons, bike, strength train, kick boxing, Half Ironmans and pretty much anything else that catches my fancy, so if you’re not in any way, shape, or form, interested in crossfit, that’s ok! If you’re not sure then give it a try for a few months (once or twice is NOT a good indicator) and you NEED to have a knowledgable coach that knows what he/she’s doing so you don’t get injured (this is when people say crossfitting is dangerous. Form is key and knowing your limitations!) Fortunately for me, I’ve got 2!!
Now I took a break from crossfit for about a year and a half and when I got back into I realized how functional it truly is. Can you get super muscley? Maybe if your diet promotes that. Also your genetics can be indicators too. But the vast majority of normal folks that utilize crossfit for health, don’t. Unless you’re a dude. Then feel free to bulk up, son! Honestly, your diet (what you eat) is what is the final say in your physical composition. If I eat crap and workout I’ll still look like crap. And if you eat crap you’ll feel like crap during a workout. Nothing is more rewarding than eating good, whole foods (whether you’re vegan, vegetarian, paleo, or otherwise) and being able to perform in a workout or just day-to-day life with more energy and success.
And the BEST part of crossfit? THE PEOPLE!!! I can not tell you how much I LOVE my community of crazy crossfitters! I’m not kidding when I say these people become like a family. They are supportive, encouraging, wonderful folks and when someone has a need, we rally. And if you’re in the Omaha/Elkhorn/Gretna area, come work out with me!
One of my biggest struggles is being supportive and motivating to my husband, Nick. This is especially hard for me as I’m very non-confrontational and I don’t like to make people dislike me, unless you’re my children in which case I’m awesome at it. I know Nick wants to be healthy, I know he wants to workout more, eat better, and get into better shape. However, when I bring it up it’s not always rainbows and puppies and smiles, it’s often frustration and trying to motivate without coming off as “nagging” or “harping” or “sarcastically commenting on their lack of drive”. That last one NEVER happens….never….ever…..crap. As someone who loves to workout and has goal after goal after goal to reach towards, helping someone you love find their motivation and a goal can often be shaky ground ripe with land mines. Especially if you’re a guy and you’re trying to help your gal get in shape even when she says “I’m so fat, I just want to be in shape” or “I hate that I’m not losing this baby weight!!” its a delicate line between helping them and coming off as a jerk when you explain to them what they actually have to do to accomplish those goals. It’s easy to find excuses NOT to start or stick with it but harder to accept the truth, that it takes hard work, dedication and commitment. My coach’s favorite quote is ” Commitment means staying loyal to what you said you were going to do long after the mood you said it in has left you.” And it doesn’t have to just apply to working out! It can be reading the bible more, getting involved in church, starting a home improvement project, or striving to get that promotion or raise at work.
I wish I could say I have it figured out. Nick will say that he is very contradicting when it comes to it because he doesn’t want me to encourage him during the workout, or even to push him too hard to even do a workout but then he wants me to acknowledge and praise him after the fact. I tend to lean more towards a hands off approach so as not to rock the boat but I also want to help him achieve his goals but keep our marriage happy and strong. What I’ve learned is that everyone’s motivation is different. For Nick it’s not enough to just go workout and feel good about getting stronger or healthier. His motivation is what I, myself, can reward him with, be it a thong bikini at the beach (for me to wear not Nick….oh heavens, imagine that visual…or don’t, please don’t) or a quick trip to get away together for some quality time. Other times it’s a matter of taking a step back and waiting for them to really truly WANT to make that change, that effort and then stepping in and really encouraging and giving them that positive reinforcement to reward that behavior. Yes, it not only works on kids but husbands and wives as well. (Just don’t tell them that!!!) And sometimes just asking them to join you, spending that time together to grow closer and sharing your passion with them. Just remember that words have the power to build others up or tear them down. I vote for building up, but that’s just me. And remember that we, the motivators, need to strive to stay positive about the whole thing regardless of how long it may take, cause the moment we start to get frustrated is when we undermine any progress our loved one has made, even if we haven’t seen it. Keep up with the encouragement, keep building up. Rome wasn’t built in a day. Terminator out.
I frequently (almost daily) read Prayfit.com’s posts. Jimmy Pena is someone I look up to as a leader in fitness but more so in how I, as an athlete, can be more Christ-like. He humbles me in that when I think of working out, why I want to work out is to look good and feel good but Jimmy reminds me that God wants me to be healthy, humble, and do it for Him, not for societal accolades. My body isn’t meant to be on parade for the world to gawk at and desire. Now I realize how contradicting this is with my header above boasting my swimsuit pictures and, let’s be honest, my ego. And while I can make excuses and come up with some really great reasons why it’s okay for me to post them and more pictures of me looking great (or not so great), in the end it’s not what God wants from me, but what I want. I want the encouragement from others and the compliments. Don’t we all? Don’t we all just ache to have someone envy us, not in a hateful way but an “I wish I had that determination” or “I wish I could be able to put this dang 3lb tub of cookie dough in the trash so I stop eating with a spoon so I’d have a chance to look that good in a bikini!” I know that when I get dressed up to go out I have hopes of people noticing that I put effort in. That I look beautiful. But what I tell my daughter is that beauty is found on the inside. That God has made us the way we are and we are all wonderfully and beautifully made. Physically “beautiful” people can sometimes be mean and ugly in their treatment of others and that people who may not be perfect on the outside can have a truly beautiful heart on the inside. Why do I put so much stock in my looks then? I don’t judge my friends based on their looks. I love them regardless of their size, gender, or outward appearance.
The main reason I train is cause I love it. Just purely love it. And I want to be healthy. I want to take care of the body God blessed me with, big thighs and all. But the thin line is to not let my ego take over. To be humble, not prideful or boastful, is more important to God than it is to appease society with letting them have a say in whether I’m fit enough, thin enough, sexy enough, and ::grimace:: funny enough. It’s hard. I fail. I know I do, I won’t deny, but by heavens, I’m going to try hard to live for what God wants of me not what I want. I’m going to strive to remind myself to be strong and healthy, not to look good in a swimsuit or skinny jeans, but because God has gifted me this body and its the only one I’ve got so I should respect it. And flaunting it is not respecting it. Having others judge it and tell me whether or not I’m thin enough, ripped enough, isn’t a life goal I want to have. Instead, I want people to look at me and see someone who, amidst all the flaws, all the struggles as well as the successes, all the weaknesses along with strengths, strives to live a life like Christ. And give Him all the credit.
I have lots of dreams and aspirations. Some you may relate to while others you may think,”This chick is crazy!” To provide you with some comic relief and hilarious inspiration, I shall list them for your enjoyment. (Or basically for my own enjoyment.)
1. Marry Chris Hemsworth. I realize I’m already married but my husband knows this particular dream and is ok with it. (I’m sure it has nothing to do with his assumption that it will never happen…)
Oh, my, yum. And a family man to boot!
2. Complete a FULL Ironman. *GULP* This is something years down the road…like 5-10 years…when I’ve lost more of my sanity. (It’d be even more awesome to be able to do it in Hawaii but I’m not a delusional person….)
From my 70.3 (Someday a 140.6!!!….Maybe)
3. Travel to: New York, California, Europe, Australia (Or eventually move there to live with my future 2nd husband…), Alaska, and I’m sure lots of other places but I’m getting slightly bored just listing them so I’m sure you’re getting bored reading them.
4. Go on a shopping spree and buy whatever I want as if I was on What Not To Wear and had gobs of money. (Except I’d be allowed to buy endless sweatpants and athletic gear).
5. Win the lottery. (If I marry Chris Hemsworth that fulfills this one too.)
6. Give a boatload of money to someone in need every year. Or rather whenever the need arises for that matter! (Kinda do this already but not to the degree I’d eventually like to!)
7. Have the metabolism of my pals Linds and Sher. (Seriously, someone figure this out so it can happen. Please! And if I can add an extra 2 inches to my height I’d be okay with that too. Unless Chris likes more petite gals then I’ll stay at 5’5 1/2″)
8. Spend an entire day at a movie theater watching awesome movies, eating popcorn and candy and junk food, and ordering a pizza to be delivered to the theater. If Chris H. happened to come along to snuggle during the movies, that’d be swell.
9. Taking my entire family to Disney World for a week. Or a Disney Cruise. Hoping to do this in the next 2 years!
10. Renew my vows with Nick in a beach ceremony when the kids are teenagers to show them what real, lasting love looks like. (I realize this is contradicting to my love for Chris Hemsworth, but I figure if you didn’t know I was joking about that then you do now…unless you’re reading this, Chris, in that case, I love YOU!) ;)
Same sense of humor. Meant to be? I think so. (Good heavens could I be any nerdier? I think not)