Get Healthy, Health and Fitness, Thoughts

Let’s just pretend like I have my shit together | September 28th, 2017

Well, hello. It’s been a while, eh? Typical Brooke fashion, for sure, like for-sursies (there’s my college education going to work right there). My plate is full, my cup is constantly runneth-ing over, and life is good. The bad is never actually that bad and is typically things I can easily brush off or just sweep under the rug and leave them to be dealt with later, if I remember. I mean, between raising a human being, both of us being in school and starting a new job I don’t have time for anything that is not serving my life in a positive way. And guys, I’ve gotten so much better about not giving a shit, it’s amazing. I’m letting go of things and situations and just not allowing them to take up like 80% of my life anymore. I have always been and will most likely continue to put other people’s needs and happiness before my own. It’s one of my charming qualities. I will always look for the best in people and want them to be happy no matter what the situation is. And, honestly when you get to a point where you realize that maybe this person or a situation doesn’t even know what will make them happy or what road to take to be happy (without them saying it outright of course), you just have to back off and let someone else take the steering wheel. So here I am getting my Carrie Underwood on and letting Jesus take the wheel. Let’s be honest, I’m a mom and always have that part of my brain on. I want the people I care about to be happy and to live the best life they possibly can and to see all the potential they have. And for everyone to just be fucking nice to one another. I just have a lot of feelings, okay?

So I am now in my third semester back at school and it is going swimmingly. Like the kind of swimming where you’re good, then get a cramp and have that quick flash of where you think you’re drowning. There have been a lot of long and sleepless nights. But, I love all of my classes and my teachers. I have all female teachers and they are all amazing in their own ways. It sounds terrible, but I have yet to find a male teacher that is not a complete asshole or narcissistic douche and made me want to actually stay in their class. My female teachers have all been so badass and motivating, the keep me going. My psych teacher was the worst last year, so bad that I actually dropped the class. I think going forward my goal will be to have my all of my teachers and professors be female for the rest of my academic career. I mean, unless someone knows a guy, then I will take a friendly suggestion. Little miss is also in school and has started Kindergarten. Which, how crazy is that? I have a child in Kindergarten. I never once imagined that I would be in school at the same time as one of own. Aurora is loving it, of course. If you know my child, she is so the opposite of me and actually loves school and looks forward to it. I am definitely going to keep that train going for as long as I can. But, she is also feeling the repercussions of being in school five days a week, for seven hours a day. I am pretty sure this is the most exhausted I have seen my girl. But, again, she is so happy. My favorite part of my days when I have school is when I’m done for the day and I go pick her up and we go do our homework together. My heart is so content and it motivates me so much more to have her by my side. I mean talk about a constant reminder of why I am doing what I am doing. She’s the best and it’s almost gross how much I love her and am obsessed with her, as a mother should be with her child. Talk about being domesticated, in some form, I’ll be cooking dinner and Aurora is at the table doing homework and asking me questions and I fucking love it. Every stress I have goes away in those moments because we have a great life and we are so blessed that we even get to do that. I love us, our life, everything.

Our time together has just become that much more important because, for one, half of the week she is with her dad and secondly I did start a new job that is time consuming in all of the best ways. My mornings start very early, in regards to waking up and then dropping of Ro at school. I tend to get home 12-13 hours which is what is making things difficult but we are starting to get into a rhythm and have a better sense of our schedule and how things will work out. Which, thank god. I have not worked out or been to Crossfit in two months. My priorities have had to shift and unfortunately that took the brunt of it. A lot of my priorities have had to change due to life and all the changes that have occurred. Some of those changes were to my education and the path I am on. Which, for those of you who don’t know I am making my way towards being a nurse. I had to make the hardest decision when it came to school and what made the most sense for my life and where it is right now. I am still 100% in love with fashion and all things product development and FIDM. But, it is currently going on the back burner until I can fully devote myself to it. It was such a heartbreaking decision to make too. My counselor looked at me and dead in the eye and told me I had to make up my mind, in the nicest of ways of course. And I had to do some deep soul searching, as I having been doing a lot of the last two-three months. What it all came down to was that my passion is helping people and I love children. So, for now, that is my focus and I have a long road ahead. I still question if I am making the right decision, but for now it feels like the right decision for me.

So here I am, slowly getting my life back together.

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Get Healthy, Health and Fitness

March 30th | 17.4 & 17.5

It has been one week since the final workout was announced for The Open. The five weeks went by so fast, I can’t believe it. Each week was more and more exciting and terrifying all at the same time. I learned new strengths about myself and to just say fuck it and do whatever is handed to me. At times I definitely hated it, but loved it just as much. Of course, at the end of the day I am proud of myself and what I accomplished. I did two of five workouts rx’d and scaled the remaining. My deficiencies were apparent and I know what I need to work on. But that’s all apart of this journey. I am really looking forward to next year and to seeing how I improve over the year.

17.4 has so far been my favorite workout of The Open. Of the four movements it included three that I love, deadlifts, wall balls & rowing. Yes, I love rowing, no I am not crazy. Yes, I may learn to hate it, but right now I love it and would rather row than run. Straight Up. I don’t even wish that I was lying to you about that. 17.4 was a repeat workout and a lot of people seemed to be pretty excited, which I totally get. It was a second chance for people to try the workout and see how far they have come from last year. The prescribed weight for the women was 155 pounds, ten pounds shy of my PR weight of 165 pounds. Which by the way I maybe did three or times, and not like separate times, I legitimately mean four times in my life, haha. But, I wasn’t going to do the workout scaled, scaled would have been 95 pounds. Which, if I did scaled I probably would have finished the workout. Scaled for 17.4 was the 95 pound deadlifts, 10 pound wall balls and instead of handstand push-ups, push-ups with a hand release. Oh, and that was my subtle way of saying that I did not complete the workout. But, let’s be honest I wasn’t going to. Let’s start with the time cap, 13 minutes. So in 13 minutes I would have had to complete 55 deadlifts, 55 wall balls, 55 calories on the row and 55 HSPU’s. I got through the deadlifts, wall balls and about 75% through the row. Deadlifts I started out okay, I did 7 and then it slowly trickled down to 1 at a time, but I fought through it. During wall balls I could definitely start feeling everything in my knees, they were not happy. By the time I got to the row I had maybe a minute and a half and I jammed through that shit. I was rowing like nobody’s business. At first my pace was 10 calories per thirty seconds, so I knew and accepted that I would not get 55 calories before the 13 minutes was up. But I knew thirty was at least doable. Oh, I forgot to mention a kind of important detail, I was the only one working out in my heat. I like to go last, watch everyone else workout and then get to it. Well, I ended up being alone. So all eyes were on me, and Aurora. Thankfully baby girl worked out and had her own version of 17.4, I posted a video on my Instagram last week because I was so proud of her. She, of course, finished way before I did. So there I was kind of alone, all eyes on me for the next thirteen minutes. Everyone was cheering and keeping me going, which was awesome because it was a battle. My judge/coach, Tommy, helped me get through it too. When I got to the row, holy shit. I just felt the presence of men haha. I think I had four people yelling at me to not quit and to just finish strong. Two of my girls came to support me which was awesome too. It was nice to know they were there to cheer me on and support me along this little journey of mine. When I finished the row I thought I was going to pass out, my legs were shot. I ended up with 145 reps completed out of 220. Like I have said before I just have to keep reminding myself that I am on my fifth month of doing Crossfit.

17.4 – 13 minute AMRAP

  • 55 Deadlifts
    • 155 pounds
  • 55 Wall Balls
    • 14 pound ball
  • 55 Calorie Row
  • 55 Handstand Push-ups

The live announcement for 17.5 was really exciting to watch. They had Katrin Davidsdottir and Sara Sigmundsdottir, two beautiful and badass girls from Iceland go head to head. These girls finished the workout in less than 7 minutes, we were given a 40 minute time cap. Insane. They are so strong and it was incredible to watch. The workout itself was 10 rounds, 9 thrusters and 35 double-unders. I cannot do double unders quite yet. There was one time last month where I was able to link 10, which was miracle in my mind. But 350, I knew would not be able to do just yet so I chose to do the workout scaled, which was just your basic run of the mill single unders,also 35 times. The weight from the thrusters was 45 instead of the rx’d 65 pounds. I finished in 13 minutes and 6 seconds and I am good with that. I don’t really know what else to say. This workout was simple and to the point as far as movements go. As soon as they say “go”, you go and you don’t stop and you just power through.

17.5 – 40 minute time cap

  • 9 Thrusters RX’d: 65 pounds
    • Scaled: 45 pounds
  • 35 Double Unders
    • Scaled: 35 Singles

 

Thank you to everyone who supported me the past five weeks and continues to support me on this journey of mine. It means a lot to know I have all of you behind me and cheering me on. Thank you to my three awesome coaches who push me and motivate me to do my best. Thank you to my judges for all of the Open workouts, for keeping me calm and helping me get through movements I didn’t think I could. Thank you to the CFVOM community, I enjoyed cheering you all on and watching you all kick ass.

 

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Adventures 2016, Get Healthy, Health and Fitness, Thoughts

My road to The Open

Going through the motions of trying to decide what to write or which of my many mock posts to choose from can be difficult at times. The Crossfit Open is now a day away, so sharing my thoughts and feelings on how Crossfit has affected me is a pretty obvious choice. But again, my insecurities surrounding my writing and choosing to be so open with people on the inner workings of my mind is kind of tough at times. No joke, I wrote this on Monday night…it is now Wednesday. But, the other night it kind of became clear to me what I wanted to, but not necessarily needed to, write about which is insecurities, more or less. Maybe.

A friend of mine, who I obviously respect or else I wouldn’t be writing about this, posted a status on facebook. Not political, nor was it one of his funny posts, but one that made me think, a lot. Like, a lot a lot. He simply just brought up the point that he doesn’t understand why people hold themselves back and don’t fully commit themselves to their dreams and goals. For most people, they will think nothing of this post and agree. One of his friends brought up a point that hit so close to home for me on a few levels, what about the people who are insecure with themselves? I tossed in my two cents in a very simple way with the least amount of words possible. I brought up that some people have higher hurdles to jump over, whether its emotional or mental. I also said that one bad experience can be a huge mind fuck for people and can be detrimental to future commitments or goals. Then a few more exchanges occurred and I said the light at the end of tunnel is sometimes so far and can seem unattainable and the light seems less bright the further you have to go down this path. His response, which for some people is very valid, was to just then push harder. Oh, my sweet friend, if only it was that easy. My heart sank a little and I didn’t respond, I just wanted to leave it a that. And as you can see, hours (days) later the response still hurts. How do you explain to someone through a computer screen that just about everyone with deep insecurities wishes it was just that easy. To be able to simply push through can seem so effortless to others. And I am speaking from a place of very real experience of having to fight my demons on a daily basis. I am now twenty eight and still have demons to battle with. I accepted a very long time ago that I always will have these struggles. I have been fortunate enough to have certain aspects, like Aurora, be my driving force to get through life. But, not everyone is blessed with things like that. So, how can I make people understand that?

I can’t.

I am not able to, in any capacity, sit here and make someone understand the struggle so many people face. It’s beautiful to know that there are so many people who are able to fight and make their way to their dreams and make them a reality, absolutely beautiful. But, we are all built so differently and need a better understanding of that. Even me describing my daily battle with myself won’t make people understand. It’s hard to understand something when maybe some people haven’t had to deal with it first hand. Not that anyone or everyone is not open minded, but when it comes to depression, social anxiety or insecurities these topics are hard for people to grasp. They can’t understand why people feel this way and just think they are throwing a pity party for themselves, which is the opposite a majority of the time. My depression and insecurities have been about me and only me. I try and do my best to cover those things up because I don’t want people to judge me for it. Sometimes that is easier said than done.

It is no secret how much Crossfit means to me. I have come to a point where I am willing to give up my social life and sanity and dedicate myself to Crossfit and be everything I can be. To eventually be the best and strongest version of myself. Now see how easy that was for me to sit here and type? It’s a nice thought. But holy shit, I am so good at talking myself out of those things and tend to a lot. It’s scary to think that way sometimes, to set a goal like that. Not because of the end goal itself but everything that will go into it and the endless questioning of my ability. Will I be good enough? Am I good enough? Am I wasting my time? Am I wasting my coaches time? Does anyone here actually like me? Did I make the wrong decision? And so on and so forth. I won’t say my weight stops me anymore that is not an insecurity for me at this point. When I began my fitness journey those insecurities slowly went away on their own. My weight doesn’t matter to me as much like it did in the past and it is no longer my main focus. I lost forty pounds and that’s all I needed to begin the process of being comfortable with myself. I don’t weigh myself anymore or necessarily care about those three digits because within four months I have gone from 162 pounds to 175 pounds (I weighed myself so I knew the actual number). Certain clothes are too big on me and things I purchased a size smaller months ago fit just right or are starting to get a little baggy. So what does that tell you right there?

That I am a mythical creature, duh.

No, but really, it just tells you I am still losing inches and possibly fat, but gaining a lot of muscle. My goals fitness wise have changed drastically due to Crossfit. Yes, I still want to lose weight, but I’m not exercising anymore, I am training. That mindset right there has changed so much for me. My goal is to lift more weight, to squat, snatch, and power clean with ease. I want to do a freaking pull-up and hand stands like it is second nature. I want to throw a weighted ball up a wall, catch it in a squat and throw it up again, repeatedly. I want to get to a point where I can do 20 burpees without stopping for a break. I want to be ridiculously strong, mentally, emotionally and physically. Okay, that tangent is over. But, you get the point. My insecurities with weight are gone, but that doesn’t mean I don’t face any others. I just began Crossfit and I have to do everything I can to NOT COMPARE myself to the other athletes I am training with. You know how tough that is? I can barely thrust or even just hold two 35 pound dumbbells over my head, but other girls can do it with ease. I have to constantly remind myself to not look at what they are doing and focus on my own shit. I get so into my own head and that’s when the light at the end of the tunnel starts to dim and seems unattainable. That sprint towards my goal is practically gone, I trip over my own thoughts and struggle to get back up and running. I cried last week during a workout, which was terrible. I think I hid it well, but I don’t know. I’ve had a lot going on in my life and was struggling to do front rack lunges with 75 lbs. I was whipping my arms so incredibly bad with the jump-rope because I could not hit my double unders. I felt like, in that moment, that I wasn’t good enough, like maybe I am making the wrong decision. Maybe I shouldn’t be doing Crossfit, maybe I’m not an athlete. That thought occurs on a daily basis. More-so now with The Open upon us and it sucks. Do I need to get over everything and “push” through it, duh…I don’t really have a choice. I signed up as soon as the registration opened up on purpose. Once I registered and paid, I couldn’t back out. I mean I could, but then I would be out of twenty bucks. So, pushing through is something I have to do, but to be able to be at that point mentally is huge. A few years ago, I would’ve just said fuck it and not done it and let that time and money go to waste. This is something that has been four years in the making. This all didn’t happen over night, it doesn’t quite work that way. It would be awesome if it did. So push through it I shall. I had a great WOD yesterday and was probably one of the only people excited to do it. This year Dave Castro gave the hint that there will be dumbbells used in The Open. We have been using them to better prepare ourselves, which is why I seemed annoyed earlier when I mentioned not being able to use the 35 pound weights. For time we need to do the following

Sit-Ups

50-40-30-20-10

Dumbbell Thrusters

5-10-15-20-25

I got that done in 13:21, I was ecstatic. Yes, I used 20 pound dumbbells, but I got through it bruises and all. (My shoulders are so tender right now, it’s ridiculous). So insecurities aside, I am really excited for Thursday’s announcement. But this is just another step up my emotional ladder and I only hope that everyone else dealing with insecurities can find the same courage to break through those barriers, at their own pace. Do things on your own time, and not what other people think. Make yourself happy, forget everyone else.

 

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Health and Fitness

Cycling, breakfast & PSL’s

I tried something new. That shouldn’t necessarily be completely shocking though. I am pretty good about trying new things and being open minded, especially when it comes to working out. Last week, I was feeling good. My headaches weren’t that bad and I didn’t have a migraine, yet. I was cleaning my room and found a free class card for a spin studio we have in Sonoma called Sonoma Cycle Fit. It’s actually the first cycling studio in Sonoma, as far as I know. They also offer TRX classes and other strength training classes, it’s great and has been a huge hit in town. Sonoma may be a small town, but we have a ton of yoga studios, a pure barre studio, cycling studio, two CrossFit facilities and a handful of gyms. Also, one of the Zumba instructors teaches at school gymnasiums to give people an opportunity to experience her class outside of the gym. There’s really NO excuse to not work out if you live here. We are incredibly lucky and I had to state that before I go any further. So, there I was with my free class card, I looked up the schedule for the nights classes and there was going to be a 30/30 class. Spin first then TRX after. I prepared myself all day, making sure I had plenty of food and water in my system. During spin I was okay, it was my first time but easy to follow along with the workout. Of course, I kept my gears a little lower then everyone so I didn’t over-do it. When I do cardio that really gets my heart rate going I have to be careful, too much and I get light headed. Well, we finished spin and I felt good. We grab kettle balls and go into kettle ball swings and I’m still feeling okay. It was after we finished kettle ball swings that I started feeling light headed, then my vision was getting a little blurry. All I could think was “fuck, don’t faint. There’s a glass wall or a mirror, nowhere safe to land”. I was more concerned about being the bull in a china shop, then injuring myself. It was pretty embarrassing having to excuse myself to sit outside. I hate feeling like I can’t do something that I know I can do. I have the strength and mindset to do it, but my head can’t for whatever reason. I was pretty bummed the rest of the week. I went back to my gym and continued my workouts, but I was still so frustrated about not being to finish the class. Now, I am determined to get myself to finish a Spin class. Yesterday instead of running I jumped on a bike and did that for 20 minutes. I would increase the difficulty and decrease it like we did in class. I got a little lightheaded, but was fine to continue my workout and lift weights. So, hopefully soon I’ll be back in a cycling studio not almost fainting.

This past week I have also been really good at eating breakfast. Like, really good. Well, I’m actually good at eating breakfast, but I love it when someone else makes it for me. Like, one of my favorite restaurants in town. My go to place is EDK (Eldorado Kitchen). I know that menu better than myself. Mmm, now I want chipotle eggs benedict, damn. I always try to be good about starting my day off with a big meal. But, I’m really good at just having coffee or tea and feeling fine. I don’t make terrible food choices the rest of the day, but I definitely eat more when I do that. When I have breakfast first thing I feel so much fuller throughout the day and eat less. I love breakfast, it’s my favorite meal you can have, aside from sushi, tacos, pizza and burgers, ha-ha. Poached eggs have been a big thing for me this last week, no matter I chose to have I always made sure to have an egg as the main part of the meal or on the side. I discovered whole wheat pancakes, thanks to my dad. I enjoy and prefer them compared to regular pancakes. I’m one of those non-loving pancakes folk. Pancakes are too dense for my stomach, especially for my first meal. But, the whole wheat ones are light and much easier on my stomach. One day I was short on eggs and traded out the egg for applesauce and I always use almond milk in place of regular milk. They were so good! I highly suggest you go try it that way. If any of you have made anything paleo or vegan you’ll already be aware of this wonderful trick. The applesauce gives the pancake a nice sweetness and you really don’t need any kind of syrup on it. But, maple syrup was really good on one of them. Making time for my morning meal has really been one of the best things I have done for myself as of recent and I’m glad I’m doing it.

Oh – and I have found a Pumpkin Spice Latte that warms my heart…Dutch Brothers, who knew!? I tried it this weekend with some of my girls and it was delicious! October without Pumpkin Spice Lattes was leaving an empty place in my heart and soul. Seriously though, try Dutch Brothers PSL with soy or almond milk. I have had it blended, iced and hot and all were delicious.

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