Tuesday, December 18, 2012

It starts with one step...again and again and again

Being healthy is a long journey filled with many steps in the right direction and some in the wrong direction.  I remind myself that it's a journey on a regular basis but also stumble often enough too.  In my quest to be stronger, faster and healthier I strive to fuel my body with wholesome, healthy foods and to challenge myself many nights a week at Milestone Crossfit. I've been on this path for a while now, a year and a half, and know it's not a destination, that it's a journey you constantly walk and a for me, someone who loves food and cooking it's also a fight.  It's a fight to do what I know is best, what makes me feel best and perform best vs. doing what is easy, comforting in times of stress or what just plain looks good. 

This summer I struggled a lot, not with any one thing but with it all.  I'm the type of person that throws themselves into the things they love so when I started Crossfit in 2011 and found out that I loved it, I embraced every facet of it and jumped in head first.   Going 90 to nothing for a year and a half is a little rough, I am the girl who doesn't move a workout unless it is absolutely necessary (i.e. I have to travel for work and must accommodate that schedule), I am the girl who can empty all the "bad" food from her pantry and have the strongest will and the strictest diet without turning back.  I am also the girl who takes on misstep and says, "eh, I'll get back on track on Monday" and maybe never does get back on track.  I think it would be an understatement to say I can get derailed, I think it's more like the train flips over, rolls down the embankment and never rights itself.  I didn't go completely nuts and start eating funnel cake for breakfast and stop working out...more like it was a gradual slide into seeing crackers in the pantry, bread on the counter and having some major apathy about my workouts.

Apathy (also called impassivity or perfunctoriness) is a state of indifference, or the suppression of emotions such as concern, excitement, motivation and passion.  Thanks Wikipedia, that about sums it up. I spent most of this summer with a very large amount of apathy, don't get me wrong this only applied to my life in crossfit and somewhat with nutrition.  I still enjoyed all the other things that make me tick, spent a lot of time with family, friends, my boyfriend...got to do a little traveling and did some fun "Austin" things.  But at the end of my summer of apathy I started to really question what I was doing and why I was failing.  Yes, I know how obvious the answer to that is...failure was a direct result of my level of giving a damn.  But for some reason that didn't quite occur to me...I felt some need to assess whether what I was doing made sense and if I should continue down the path I had been on.   Then I read a blog post by someone I have major respect for, a blogger I love to read each day, PaleOMG. (If you are not familiar with Juli Bauer's blog RUN to get there!).  Juli writes for a few sites but on the Again Faster blog she posted something that really resonated with me.  To give you some context Juli is an amazing paleo blogger but she is also a Crossfit coach in Denver, CO and a competitor.  Her post called Creating My Crossfit is all about her struggle to feel as excited about Crossfit as she once had.  Seeing someone who has infinitely more skills, has dedicated herself to training others and is clearly committed to the healthy lifestyle struggle with a similar set of feelings made me think twice about abandoning my course.

It took me some time, thinking about it all, remembering why I got involved in this in the first place and realizing how stupid it would be to truly abandon something that has given me a new view of what I am capable of and a place that has introduced me to some of the best people I could ever meet.  I realize I am very hard on myself and that my apathy came in part from my struggle to meet my own expectations.   It is very hard to do something day in and day out only to feel like you are not measuring up to what you think you should be able to do.  Ironically, I actually reached some major milestones this summer, I managed to deadlift 300lbs+, I got my first kipping pullup and I set PRs (personal records) in nearly all of the other things we did (benchmarks, various lifts and even sprint/running related things).  Somehow I ignored all of that in favor of feeling like I hadn't done enough, like I wasn't able to do more and then getting angry and eventually apathetic.   All the stuff that makes me who I am, all of my personality quirks that make me good at my job and make me pretty decent at the hobbies I enjoy turned against me to some extent to make me hate something I loved because I felt like I wasn't good enough (according to the one important expert, me).  Wow, that's absurd.  After a summer of apathy and some over-thinking I realized the only way I was going to get anywhere was to ignore the part of me that constantly told me how I was failing to measure up.  Not so easy, believe me. 

Starting the week before Thanksgiving (told you it took me a long time to think through it all) I decided to throw myself back in.  About that time our coaches decided to beat us to a pulp so in addition to my renewed effort I was barely walking that week.  So here I go, a few weeks before New Years, my resolution is to not be so hard on myself.   Besides, my dedication to and love of Crossfit has been embraced by my family too (not gonna lie, my sister started this for all of us) but so much so that our Box even laughs about it...

So I guess the path of least resistance (and most to an extent) is to keep rolling and get back on track again. 

No comments: