Dusting Off the Keyboard

You know it’s been awhile when my browser history doesn’t even remember my web addy.

single tear for the forgotten blog

single tear for the forgotten blog

But I did that to myself…and to those of you who still read this – sorry y’all! To say that life has been crazy would not be an accurate enough statement…because in truth life has been LIFE. I’ve thought about writing, but then wondered what would I write about? If you follow me on Instagram I’m sure you’ve noticed a steady dwindling of fitness related posts and more of my personal self spilling over..and with it tons of selfies, lol.

10384379_10100962322350165_2566257688293734591_n 22000_10100938079009015_3549993676351100124_n 10956522_10100964966611045_8383583343172497099_n 1459199_10100969646577355_2536376503432975513_n

My selfie game is strong.

Let us take a walk back in time, shall we? I’ve been in this very strange place over the past year or so since I’ve stopped running regularly. Change of jobs, refocus of career, but more importantly a change in my exercise and food routine. I still haven’t quite landed into a regular pattern since I’ve stopped running. CrossFit kinda came in and with it a new community and new “norms” and apparently a new interest in lifting heavy things. How running fit into that lifestyle was quite easy…it didn’t. *shrug* Part of me felt kinda weird writing for a blog entitled TheCurvyRoadRunner, when I technically don’t really run like that, nor do I consider myself a runner. The Curvy CrossFitter or The Overweight Oly Lifter don’t really work for me either, lmao…I’m none of those things. I’m all of those things. I’m just me. I like to run…and lift weights…and these days it seems I’m gaining a new love for yoga. I just like DOING THINGS. There’s a lot the human body can do if the human mind and spirit would only endeavor to try.

My weight has fluctuated, and I’m on the heavier side of the scale…but I’m stronger than I’ve been in awhile. And I’m challenging myself to do things that I never thought I would…like handstands. Something so simple, right? Yet…here I am at 270 lbs (yea I said it) doing handstands. Who said I couldn’t do that? Apparently I did. So I’m about changing that. I’m for challenging the notion that I can’t do ______. I can. Or at least I can try, right? And with trying…you get better.

handstanding in 4 inch heels? don't mind if i do!

handstanding in 4 inch heels? don’t mind if i do!

For awhile I’d considered changing the name of this blog. I know the name I want it to be…Find Your FIt….because I think that’s what this journey has really been about for me. Figuring out what I want to do, how I want to do it, and what being fit looks and feels like to me. So I suppose you can say I’m “back” though I won’t be posting daily. For my own sake and sanity, I’ll at least try to use this space to share my own thoughts and experiences as I go about finding my own fit.

IMG_6293

Advertisements

I Want to do ALL the Workouts…ALL of Them

I need a minute to complain. So hear me out for a lil bit – just humor me on this one. There is simply not enough time in the day to do all of the physical activities I love to do. There’s not even enough days in the week to plan out a schedule that allows me to feel fully fulfilled with the workouts I do have. It’s annoying. So I’m pouting right now.

doallthethings

If only…but yes, this is how I often feel.

Running has been my main hitta, my number one, for about 3-4 years. But then? CrossFit. And then? Olympic Weightlifting. I kept telling myself that I’d find a way to run still, that my forray into the world of wods and 1RMs wouldn’t stop me from hitting my favorite trail a couple of days a week. That I’d still find time to incorporate yoga into my routine. Lies. There are so many options…sooooo many. Of course I find happiness in several of those options, but I’ve yet to find the right balance – the right mix of things. Oh, and still manage to go to work, eat, and ya’know…live.

Here’s the real rub though…to be good at something, ANYTHING, one must put a good 85-90% of their efforts towards that. I’ve never been good with ultimatums though, so naturally I am having a rough time with that kind of logic. Oly makes me happy. Running gives me peace. CrossFit gives me community. Yoga gives me clarity. It’s beautiful that I can get all of these wonderful, beneficial things from such varied forms of working out. But how to successfully enjoy them all in a way that is not detrimental to my goals? And body?

Truth moment? I need to revisit my goals. Which is right on time actually, as I spent the majority of this year working on and working towards the goals I’d set for myself last year. I took a break from running to dedicate myself to CrossFit. I dedicated myself to CrossFit to figure out which competitive lifting style (strongman vs powerlifting vs Oly) I wanted to pursue further. Well? The verdict’s in and the lady has chosen Oly. Now that I’ve discovered what area I want to focus on, I’m hoping to build out a schedule that’s a little more realistic of time constraints and my rather divergent interests. Any trainer or coach will tell you that when it comes to setting goals for yourself, you need to make them SMART:

Specific
Measurable
Attainable
Realistic
Timely

S.M.A.R.T. Reason being, if you start out with goals that are too vague and unrealistic, then you’re gonna bomb out. Know what you’re working towards and chart a course for getting there. I don’t always use SMART goals, but when I do, it makes my life a lot easier, as I have checkpoints along the way to map my progress. I start big, with my ultimate goal, and will work my way backwards from there. Detailing my steps helps to see what the steps are to get me to the goal. Then I assign a timeline to it. Or, if it doesn’t seem realistic…I’ll adjust. So, if right now my main issue is figuring out a way to do all of the physical activities I love to do, then I need to prioritize those activities and figure out what my baseline of participation needs to be for maximum happiness and wellbeing.

I’m thinking ahead to 2015 already…and I think my BIG goals for the year will be:
1. Participate in an Open (Olympic lifting competition)
2. Run a race – either a 10-Miler or a Half Marathon
3. Maximize the hours in a day to work, play, sweat, and rest.

It’ll get me back into running again and allow for me to push myself with the weights. Integrated training. It can work. At least I hope to stop whining about not having the time to run. *shrug*

Anyone else out there have that same issue finding balance? Or is it just me?

Fitness = Bubble Butt + Thigh Gap + Body Shaming?

I was on Pinterest this evening, looking for some worthy motivational and inspiration messages to both share with you all and to keep in my personal collection. It’s been awhile since I’d been on the site, but I happened to type in “Fitness” as my search term and these were some of the top images that popped up:

bd58e395ff9ea1949a1220136b225ff7 db0bd18997a229c7399bcfcda9dd8655 35f94a87364123636d34cf447b6f2a02

Nitpicking…dissecting…and shaming of the female body as a way to inspire fitness? Is that really the way we want to go? Is this truly inspirational, or are we playing on the fears and worries of many women who may already have a number of body issues. Is it not enough that we are bombarded daily with society’s standards of what beauty is? So now we have brought that same comparison and shame to the world of fitness. Now, don’t get me wrong, I recognize that you can tag a photo with as many keywords as you’d like and perhaps I just got the unluck of the draw this evening, but as I’ve been observing the fitness movement that is sweeping the nation, I can’t help but think that there is a bigger issue that we are just NOT addressing.

If we’re going to talk about physical fitness, we are going to also have to talk about health – mental and emotional. Shame and fear are both terrible motivators. Health, true and lasting health, should come from a place of love and understanding. You want to be a better, healthier person because you love yourself and perhaps even because the love you have for those closest to you motivates you to take certain steps to ensure you can maximize the time you are able to spend with them. Understanding comes in as you recognize that there may be ebb and flow in your day to day healthy living, but that these changes are natural and a part of life. Personally, I do not think that chasing after an ideal body part(s) or running from the fear of cellulite is a way to have sustainable and healthy weight loss and fitness goals.

And what really gets me in the midst of all of this – is that all of these “fitness motivation” imagery is more or less targeted at women with a very distinct message..

“Who you are isn’t good enough. You need to have these physical qualities to be considered healthy/fit/sexy.”

*yawn*

*yawn* …riiiight.

The feminist in me isn’t buying that one bit. And while I know from a professional and personal standpoint, that naturally as you reduce caloric intake and increase calories burned (aka good eating and exercise habits) you will see a physical change in your body – depending on HOW you’re exercising and WHAT you’re eating, results WILL vary. And that’s not even getting into what kind of body type you may be. Fit looks different on every…body. Why then, do we insist upon driving home such a narrow and frankly superficial view of what fitness is. And further more…who the HELL are you to tell me what’s wrong with my butt/hips/thighs? I really…REALLY wish that society would spend LESS time concerned with the female body and MORE time focused on promoting holistically healthy imagery, guidance, and examples of the multiple avenues to fitness.

Which brings me to yet another question…what is fitness anyway? What does it mean to be fit? These are questions I’m posing to myself and you as well. What are the goals that you’ve set for yourself? And why? What is your motivation? What drives you to get up in the early morning or go out after a long day at work and put in some time at gym? I hope, that after some thought and reflection, that the answers you come up with are ones that make you happy and will do no harm in the long run. I want everyone to reach their highest self, to be the best they can possibly be. Fitness looks and feels like whatever works best for YOU. Perhaps isn’t thigh gap, or super chiseled muscles. Maybe it’s a dress size or two less coupled with the ability to run around with your dog or kids a little more. Maybe it’s reducing the number of medications you need to take. Or being able to walk or run up a flight of stairs without losing your breath. It could be something as simple as being able to bend over and touch your toes.

It could be any of those things.

It could be all of those things.

But it’s YOUR choice…and you have the power to decide what fitness feels like for yourself. Please, don’t let society or family and friends try to define your personal goals and aspirations for you. You’re the architect here. Make sure you are building on a solid foundation.

Does anyone even hear me out there? Am I the only one who’s kinda over it? What do you all think?

Taking the Guilt Out of Eating

I follow a couple of healthy food and recipe accounts on Instagram and have recently noticed a lot of them talk about “guilt free” recipes and snacks. And that phrase just…bothers me for some reason.

Why is the word guilt even remotely associated with food and the way we eat? It’s remarkable that such a strong emotion, guilt, is tied to something as basic and necessary as providing sustenance for our bodies to function. Eating is an essential function of the human body. You literally will cease to function if you do not eat.

It speaks volumes that, in an attempt to eat healthier, it’s become a trend to take some of our less than healthy foods, ya know the ones we love but end up regretting having eaten later, and make them slightly healthy enough, or not as fattening and dubbed it guilt free.

Guilt-Free-Desserts-607x260

This kind of imagery is very detrimental. It just perpetuates the “fear” associated with gaining weight by eating a cupcake, which further exacerbates the guilt. If you want the cupcake, have it. But what you DON’T want to do, is have 10 of them in one sitting. MODERATION is key.

The term guilt free is a trap on both sides.

Firstly, the thought of something being guilt free can lead to overindulgence. Oh, it’s a guilt free cookie dough ball…it’s made with quinoa and all kinds of other healthy stuff – I’m good to down 6 of these right? I mean…it’s healthy! WRONG. Adding the term guilt free mentally flips a switch in most folks heads that gives them the green light to overindulge. Granted, the quinoa cookie dough balls probably have less sugar and fat that regular cookie dough, but either way you’re still missing the point of eating right if you down the entire batch in only a few (or one) sitting. Guilt free or no, you my dear, have failed in learning moderation.

guilt2

Secondly, I don’t like the idea that guilt should in any way shape or fo be associated with eating. And if those feelings of guilt DO exist when it comes to a persons daily diet, then it’s time to take a serious look at the way in which you relate to food. Good isn’t meant to make you feel guilty. It’s meant to nourish your body. What makes things complicated is that in out day and age there are SO many foods that may taste delicious or are quick to make/consume, but don’t nourish us nearly as well as a more natural and whole food counterpart. Add to that the emotional value that we place on food…it may remind you of a special memory or a loved one or provide some kind of familiarity and feeling of pleasure when you are eating.

But does it FEED you? Really and truly, FEED you the things you need and not the things you want. Do you eat more for joy or more for necessity? And if it is more joy based eating, then I wonder how you feel…how you TRULY feel when that meal or snack is complete. These are questions you have to ask yourself. I know there have been times in my heavier days when I felt a little guilt about eating too much of a bad thing. Yea it felt great when I choked down, but afterwards I kinda felt like whatever pleasure I got from eating was gone once I stopped eating. And worse, I felt bad for indulging too much. I personally had to, and still do, evaluate the way I look at food. I am making myself take the time to cool for myself. I’m always short in time, so Sundays are my days to cool and prep meals and snacks for the week. I get excited about my prep time. I look forward to it. And best of all, I know what I’m eating and feel happier and more empowered by that. My indulge days or moments are still there. I allow for a meal out or happy hour with friends – I know that in out society food is a means of bringing people together socially, so I’m not trying to change the system…I’m finding ways to function within it and still come out on top. Guilt and regret are no longer words I associate with eating. My advice to you is to try having a quick check in with yourself before you dive into the “goodies.” My check in sounds something like this…

Me: I think I want to eat *insert unhealthy meal/snack here*
Myself: Are you sure?
Me: Yea.
Myself: Ok, then you’re not gonna feel bad about this later right? No moaning and groaning about trying to burn the calories later, because you know that NEVER happens no matter how much folks say it.
Me: Yep, I’m willing to take the hit for indulging this time.
Myself: Ok, cool. Enjoy!

That is how I manage my cravings. Sometimes a snack or treat just isn’t worth it. And in those moments I will swiftly say no. I’m a big believer in living with no regrets. Learn to question your dietary habits and question why they are the way they are. It’s completely fine to do a quick check in with yourself to make sure you’re making informed choices about what you eat and when.

Make every meal a guilt free one by practicing accountability and setting realistic expectations on what you eat and what your food can and cannot do for you.

6a00e5500c7721883301a3fc02af3c970b-800wi

Morning Motivation #122

jack-canfield-decide-believe

 

I’m going to continue with my theme of ‘”BELIEVE” for this week…There are a lot of times where I’ll hear someone say they wish they could run, or lift weights, or be more active or eat better, or live a more active lifestyle – you get my point. The mind is a powerful, POWERFUL tool, and when it comes to making positive life changes, your mind can be your best ally or your worst enemy – it’s really up to you. But if you want it to be your ally, you must start by telling yourself that you CAN DO IT. Anything you wish to achieve can indeed be done, but the battle for your goals starts in the mind. Believe that a healthier life is one you deserve. Believe that is is within your reach. Believe that it is a possibility for you. Believe in yourself, and no one can stop you.

 

Be great.

Morning Motivation #121


simple-reminder-believe-in-dreams

 

I want to remind you, that whatever your hopes, goals, and aspirations may be…remain centered in your belief that it CAN happen and you WILL get there. If you’re looking to lose some weight, get more fit, complete a triathalon, run your first 5k…GO FOR IT. Nothing is out of your reach as long as you have the capacity to dream, believe, and DO.

Be great!!!!

Do You Know What Today IS?!?!?

3yearbirthday_spot2-thumb-640x1035-134

The turtle has always had a special place in this runner’s heart, lol. Tortoise is the new hare…just sayin!

It’s my anniversary…anniversarrrrrryyyy. lol

Today marks the 3rd year of The Curvy Road Runner, and my what an interesting and fun 3 years it’s been. I started this blog as a way to share my weight loss story with others, and as a way to show folks that big people run. Yea, and they can run FAR. Maybe not as fast…but still…we run.

As the years have gone by, I’ve experienced a lot of growth as a person and a runner. I’ve found my calling in life, to be a continued source of encouragement and knowledge for those who are trying to lose weight and change their lives for the better. So? Come this spring I will be a certified personal trainer. It’s a big, BIG leap for me, but it’s a leap that I am SO happy to be taking. From there, the learning will just continue as I take on clients and continue to further immerse myself in the world of fitness and physical health.

Over the years I’ve found that my attitudes and outlook towards exercise have evolved and expanded beyond the realm of running. I’ll always love running…it’s kinda my first love and I attribute a lot of the positive changes that have come about in my life to the sport. These days I find that I am opening up my sights to other various forms of exercise, and have fallen in love with lifting weights. Anything that challenges me or intimidates me is something that is guaranteed to interest me. The more days go by, the more I’ve come to see myself as an athlete. Can you be overweight and still be an athlete?

Yes virginia low res

Apparently, you can, and that has been mindblowing to me. I may not be at my final destination, but I’m on my way there and am having a blast along the way. There are so many things that I want to accomplish for both the blog and my personal health in this year alone…2014 is going to rock out loud! So, get ready! And dance! It’s my anniversary!!!