An update.

Six months since I’ve written. What can I say about that time?

I finished my first semester of seminary school.
I was in Death Valley for three months.
I started my second semester of seminary school.

That about sums it up. Chronologically and factually.

What about emotionally? Oh, I’d say it has been a roller-coaster. More like a kid’s roller-coaster. You know, the kinds that just slightly has it’s ups and downs, nothing major. Still a roller-coaster though. Death Valley was a dark place emotionally. I felt lonely and separate from everything. Most of the time I kept my emotions in check. It was hard work. I’m lucky that I was able to mostly keep it together.

Now I’m going into this second semester of seminary. I’m feeling mostly good. It feels amazing to be back home. After my summer experience, it really feels like a huge blessing to be where I am right now. I have the stress of school. I have the stress because of my current weight. My body doesn’t feel well. My mental health is suffering as a result. I have to put in the hard work for my body. But at the same time I have to put in the hard work of school. It’s already a month into school, and I haven’t quite gotten into the rhythm of anything. I better step up fast.

My prayers are just that I can keep myself together emotionally and do what needs to be done. And there is a lot to be done!

A Week Off

Here’s a picture of tacos for no reason at all. Except that they were absolutely delicious, and I wish I was eating one right now.

Spent a whole week doing nothing towards my goals. And I’m ok with that. I’ve had family in town and I wanted to maximize my time with them. I also had to go to work, which limited my time with them. I had to go to sleep early to keep my sleep hygiene, and then I would have to wake up early. It didn’t always work out just fine. Although I will say positively that I did go to work and I did volunteer. This week is over. On to the future.

Starting Monday I will adjust my diet. I will go back to the gym. I will write more. I will do more planning. I will prepare more for school to start. I’m especially excited about going back to the gym. A whole week off was a bit too much for me. It affects my mental health tremendously. I feel much more even tempered when I’ve been active. Inactivity creates a lot of energy stored inside without an outlet. It ends up creating more anxiety and more irritability in me, which then makes me depressed which makes me less inclined to do the things I want to do. It’s a terrible cycle. Sooo… I need to keep exercising. When I don’t know what to do, or when I don’t feel like doing anything: EXERCISE! That’s my note to self.

Also I’m not beating myself up for not having done much this week. It happens. There will be times like this. As long as I pick myself back up, and keep going, we’re good. So here’s to continuing good health!

Hang Squat Snatch

Different day, different problems, different successes.

This morning I got up early and refreshed. Feeling good about the morning, I went back to bed. But it was a terrible idea. I then had several back to back terrible, horrific dreams. They’re way too dark for me to write about. I don’t want to relive them. I woke up again in a sweat and quickly got out of bed to go to the gym. Arrival at the gym got my mind off of the dreams and into the present moment.

A day off of the gym felt like an eternity on my body. I was hurting through warmup. It seemed like all of my joints had become stiff. I felt quite inflexible. Just warming up with the barbell was tough. I felt like I’d never be able to lift the weight as prescribed. But, I tried. And, well, I lifted more weight than I’ve ever lifted on the Hang Squat Snatch than ever before. In fact, it was a weight that I didn’t think I’d ever be able to lift. Only weeks ago I was barely being able to lift the bar like that. Not only that, it was right in line with many of the other strong ladies in the gym. The girl behind me usually lifts about twice the weight that I lift, and today I was lifting the same weight as her! It took me a million tries but I finally PR’d my Hang Squat Snatch! Way to go me!

The gym was great. Got home, freshened up, and headed out to my counselor appointment. On my way there I realized that I had prepared nothing. I hadn’t thought about my week. In fact, I couldn’t even remember my week. I didn’t bring my notebook. I didn’t bring my workbooks. I had simply forgotten everything. Well I got there and told this to my counselor. She mentioned it being yet another symptom of my depression. We went through a whole list of other things last week. After talking to her, I became aware that today was not an isolated instance. I’m concerned to say the least, but don’t quite know what to do.

After meeting my counselor I went down to the church office to do some work for Sunday’s services. I had a great time learning some new things and chatting. We got a lot of work done, and it all felt really wonderful. The rest of the day was similarly nice.

To conclude, if you asked me how my day was today, I’d probably say it was good because it was indeed pretty good considering my big success at the gym. But I’d say it knowing that there were several things that I am actively avoiding and unwilling to confront.

 

Triathlon Training

Triathlon Training. Here we go. This is happening. Believe it or not.

It all started when I was over at my friends’ house. We were talking about something or another, and the subject of triathlons came up. I somehow stated that I would join them in doing a tri. What? Yep. I am now going to start training for a triathlon. Not really sure how it all happened. But it’s happening.

I’ve always wanted to try a tri. My chance has finally arrived. The timing is perfect. This summer I’ll be leading a running tour. So I have to get in shape for that. And why not train for a triathlon in the process? I can build up my running fitness as well as my overall fitness. Sounds like a win-win.

Tuesday the extra work begins. I will continue my 5 days a week of CrossFit, and I will add the tri training along with it. Tomorrow is an off day, but Tuesday I have an extra run to start. Wednesday will be a bike, and Thursday will be a swim. The rest of the work will continue on with alternating workouts, distances, and times.

I’m pretty excited about it all. Training for an event is a tangible goal. I have the resources, I have all the equipment, I have the basic understanding. All I really have to do is put in the work. This will be good for my mental health. I enjoy having something to look forward to and I enjoy increasing my physical abilities. This will definitely build up my mental toughness. It’s going to take a lot of discipline. There will be so many moments when I’ll really feel like giving up. But I can’t let that happen. I have to keep going. Everything for me is about moving forward. Always keep moving. However slow you need to go, just keep going.

My Fitness Story

I played a lot of sports when I was a kid. Even in high school I tried playing some things. Mostly I had given up on trying.

In college somehow I decided to start working out at the gym across my dorm. I did really well. Lost some weight. But by second semester my enthusiasm was gone. I hated how I looked. So I gave up. I let myself go completely. I was in horrible health. For another 6 or 7 years I struggled with my weight.

My first job out of college had a gym before you leave the office. So I stopped by every day on my way out to do a light workout. Soon I was able to join the lunch time crew who worked out way better than I could ever have done on my own. And then I started Kung fu. And life was amazing. I felt great. I was fit. I had to buy new clothes. It was pretty cool.

Fast forward a couple of years. I end up in Fort Worth with my parents and with no job. So I found a Muay Thai gym. Earlier when I thought I was fit, I was delusional. Kicking, punching, elbowing, kneeing… and then CrossFit on top of that. Then I can safely say that I was fit. And that I looked like I was fit. But in my own skin I couldn’t see it. I still felt like I was heavy.

New job prevented me from working out so much. This has been the theme for the last five years. Every year I put on more weight. Sure, I do things every now and then, but I’m not fit, and I’m the heaviest I’ve ever been.

So. With all of that running through my past. I joined a CrossFit gym. I’ve been going since August. Five days a week. I haven’t seen a weight change because of my medicine, but I know that I’m getting fitter! All the people are awesome. Every day is different but it’s always challenging. I finally feel like I can actually reach my goals this time and sustain them.

Gym Intentions

Today I woke up 3 hours late, ate 50 cent grilled cheese sandwiches and went to the liquor store, instead of going to the gym.

I had all intentions of going to the gym. But it simply didn’t happen. I had nightmares this morning and had kind of a hard time recovering from them. Nightmares are unusual for me, so it was particularly distressing. I kept wanting to wake up from it but the dream kept repeating and I couldn’t get out of it. It was a little bit terrifying. Eventually I did finally break free of it, and I quickly got out of bed.

 

I wanted to go to the gym today. But because I got up late, it couldn’t happen during any other part of the day. I’m learning to be forgiving of myself for not always being up to par. Sometimes you just can’t control circumstances. However, I could have made better choices like not eating grilled cheese sandwiches. You can try better next time. Because I couldn’t go to the gym today means that I must go tomorrow.

“Act justly, love faithfulness, walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

Feeling Sick

My coach at the gym asked me today if I was doing ok. I was moving rather slow. I told her that I was incredibly sleepy and that my medication had changed. She was supportive. Later I was still feeling lethargic and she said, “You made it here to the gym instead of still being in bed!” I was encouraged by that. And I felt like my morning was not all a waste.

After the workout I had a super supportive conversation with my sister-in-law about my recent frustration with this weight gain. Talking with her made me feel really good. Right after that I met with another coach from the gym to discuss nutrition. That was also great.

Most of the late morning early afternoon went well. Until sometime during the afternoon. I started to feel dizzy and light headed. It was like my blood pressure was fluctuating every time I moved my head. I was nauseated as well. We went to pick up my brother from the airport, and the symptoms never fully went away. In fact they got worse. I laid down in bed for an hour or so. It helped until I got up again and everything came back. In fact I’m still dealing with these symptoms. I’m hoping that a night’s sleep will shake it off. I’m almost afraid to move for fear of the dizziness. My head hurts too. Ugh, I feel sick.

I wonder if it’s all a prolonged panic attack for some reason.

I submitted my seminary school application today.