Tag Archives: goals

Game On, 2015.

29 Dec

Well, folks.  I warned you to follow me on Instagram – and you still should, duh! (@MichelleSFTS)

I guess when the universe decides you need to take a break, then you do what the universe wants.  I’m feeling kinda like the Fresh Prince of Bel-Aire when he got shipped from West P to Cali to be honest.  Good decision on both of our parts, the Fresh Prince and I.  I’m not going to get into too many details because….well….it’s none of yo’ business really but my life is VERY different than it was back in October.  More details may follow if I feel the need to share them, but the most relevant changes to this space include:  I’ve moved to another part of the city and I’m back to working in an office.

For me, these changes have posed many new obstacles.  I mean, who can make time for anything really – it’s not like Trivia Crack is going to play itself.  But, I digress…First, it’s been incredibly difficult for me to stay on track with clean eating while working in my new office!  Between all the wonderful treats they bring in for us at work and the holidays, I’m ashamed to admit that I think I’ve gained 10 15 lbs.  If I don’t meal prep responsibly, I find myself eating Chipotle, Panera, or Chic-fil-a for lunch.  NOT good.  Second, I’m struggling to settle into a fitness routine.  This one is sad because there really isn’t any reason why.  I mean, yes I have a slight commute now but my hours allow for plenty of time for fitness.  Laziness and the holiday chaos are really the only things I can attribute to my suddenly sedentary lifestyle.

But, you all know I love a challenge and I’m goal-oriented, so….

  • I joined a gym near my house.
  • I’m not only registered for the Pittsburgh Half Marathon in May, but I took it upon myself to register for ANOTHER half in September.
  • I’m made a base-building plan for the month of January.
  • I’m in the process of buying new running shoes (mine aren’t quite maxed out on the mileage and I’m still not sure which ones I want – open to suggestions though!)
  • I have a few new gym buddies.
  • I realistically meal plan and prep, usually creating around 3-4 healthy options for the week.  By eating leftovers for lunch, I don’t leave myself room for temptation.

Honestly, the only true solution is motivation, hard work, and self control.  We all know it.  But having a good plan makes it a hell of a lot easier, amiright??

So, what can you expect from SOLE For The Soul in 2015?

You can absolutely expect more healthy recipes being shared, along with tons of complaining about running!  Jk.  About the complaining, kind of.  Not really – I definitely will be complaining because half marathon training is probably way more difficult than I can even imagine right now!  Eeek!  I can’t wait!!  You can also expect tons of my usual antics.

Game on, 2015.

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Sunday Runday

13 Jan

I was dealing with some serious internal conflict on Saturday night about what distance I should run on Sunday.  First world problems all up in here.  Earlier that day, I had decided that my 2014 inaugural race should be the Ole 5K again.  I plan to train harder than I did last year as I think I’m a bit more advanced this time around as the beginner program seems too easy now.  So, Hal Higdon’s Intermediate 5K Training Plan it is!  The problem is the first week’s scheduled long run is 5 miles.  I’ve peaked at 3.5…

I was hesitant on Sunday because I had been on the treadmill all of last week.  I had serious doubts about 2 miles.  But, if I want to build up to 5 miles before training begins then I have to jump up to 3.  There was really no point in putting it off, so I knew I had to swallow my fear of failure and just try as hard as I could.  I took a water break after 2 miles at the car, then pushed onward into Frick Park. #blueslidepark

Frick-Park-Pittsburgh

And guess what?  I friggin’ did it!  I’m not putting any pressure on myself about it.  For the next 27 days I will see how far I get with base building and go from there.  With a little practice and a lot of persistence, I just know I can beat my previous time for the Ole 5K.

I went home and rested for a few hours, hydrated, and watched some extra greasy reality TV.  A few hours later, Liberty and I hit the road to meet up with some of our friends.

Riverfront-Park-South-Side-Pittsburgh

Actually the dogs had never met before, so they weren’t friends before the walk.  Katie was my roommate in college for a few years and is one of the only people I am still in touch with.

Dog-Walking-Pittsburgh

It was really fun! We discovered some homeless people camps and also a dog park, which was super muddy.  Just the way Liberty likes it.

South-Side-Dog-Park

This trail is part of the Great Allegheny Passage, which I’ve written about before.  If we had kept going, it would eventually connect with the trail that I run down at the Waterfront.  Pretty neat!  Since we were walking with absolutely no concern about speed or distance, I was able to give my muscles a nice cool down.  I am going to stretch out like crazy tonight after work and hopefully get 2 in in the morning!

Just a bit of self reflection…

10 Jan

Yesterday afternoon, I noticed that I still get that knot in my stomach as my car slowly climbs the hill leading to the gym.  It’s a nervous, excited feeling that I get anytime I do something new or am faced with a decision.  It’s a strangely good yet uncomfortable feeling:  like butterflies exploding followed by a feeling I can only describe as swimming to the surface of water but being jerked back by something.  Anxiety is fun, isn’t it?  It’s a constant battle within myself.  Do I want to take the risk of what could happen?  Will I sink or will I fly?  Oftentimes, the situation results in neither.  Instead, I am gifted an anti-climactic exhale in which I realize I have again made a big fuss about nothing.

I parked my car, climbed all of the stairs, and entered the gym last night.  I could feel my breath get caught in my lungs as I realized that there were NEW PEOPLE there.  New to me anyway.  Did I mention that I get the sinky feeling every time I have to deal with change as well?  Change and choices.  Thank God those aren’t common.  Fun times up in here!

The anxiety-riddled half of my brain is off-set completely by the other ultra-competitive half.  A few of my acquaintances have been talking about working out on social media and I mentioned to a mutual friend that I didn’t think the one girl (I’m not in her fan club, let’s just say that!) would stick with it.  My friend disagreed, stating that the girl in question happens to be a very determined person and once she set her mind to something, she usually achieved it.  I was immediately offended, of course, because who does she think she is prancing around leaving FB statuses peppered with all that determination.

frenemy-somecard

I began 2013 feeling  determined, but ended feeling like I had forfeited along the way; obviously this has left me feeling resentful of other people’s success.  It was now up to me to out determine my so-called “determined” acquaintance because obviously I have to do better than her.  Oh, wait, you mean that’s irrational?  Don’t care.  When I wanted to bolt from the new gym people, my mind flashed to her and I picked my favorite treadmill despite there being 2 people in its circumference.  In your face, Facebook friend.  Bonus: anxiety completely forgotten.

Have you ever had a full conversation or debate with your organs?  A mile into my run, my brain said You did great!  You can totally stop at 1 mile, pat yourself on the back and go home feeling good!  and then my legs said Feeling a little sore, but we can def go another mile…  and then my lungs said We are 100% fine!  We’re not even out of breath!  and so then I’m confused.  My brain is feeling like I want to stop, but the rest of my body wants to keep going.  I kept running, taking a mental step back to inventory the situation.  This is what running is about, really, why I chose it.  There will be times when you are done mentally and times when your body will give out.  But I chose running so that I could challenge that little voice inside of my head when she tries to fill me with doubt.  I am addicted to the feeling I get when I rise above that voice, when I chose not to let my fear of flight keep me from taking off.  So, I kept going.  Really, I kept going because of my silly competitive psyche.  That alone would’ve kept me going.  But, I also kept going because I managed to muster up some mental toughness and shield me from my doubts, uncertainties, and that smug bitch in the back of my head who wants me to fail.

running-pinspiration

This isn’t just a little story about how my competitiveness overrode my anxiety, it’s the story of how my biggest weakness provided me with a goal.  I hope that in 2014, I am able to manufacture more of that.  Determination.  Toughness.  Mental grit.  I can’t think of a better replacement for all the anxiety and doubt that’s bottled up in there now.

Declaration

27 Dec

Well I was about to write a really boring 2013 recap for you, but…

mackenzieGIF

So.

In that spirit, I think it’s resolution time!

2011:  I resolved to leave corporate sales world and go back to school for my master’s degree in sustainable systems.  Yikes!  What a scary, exciting time for us.  This is also the first time in my life that I consistently worked out (& to be honest, it was pretty inconsistent).

2012:  I resolved to focus more on sustainability, eat out less, and run a half marathon (specifically a few 5Ks, a 10K, and then lead up to a half).  At this point in my life, I truly had no understanding of what that meant.  I just knew I needed a change.  Looking back on my posts from this time period, things seem very stagnant, with much of my time being focused on opening our business and graduating.

2013: From my postings, I seemed to feel unresolved regarding 2012.  I was disappointed with my running progress and my lack of commitment to healthy living.  While I can say with 100% certainty that I achieved my goal of living more sustainably, I re-committed to my fitness goal of running a half marathon.  I ran 2 5Ks, graduated from school, and we unexpectedly purchased 2 additional rental properties:  certainly nothing to scoff at.

2014:  I’m feeling like I had at least some forward momentum in 2013.  I’ve had the same goal for 3 years and I’ve barely made any headway in attaining it. That’s not a very good feeling.  I’m also staring down 30.  My one and only goal for 2014 is to finally get it right.  I’m not making any specific promises to myself (trust me, I still think about that half every day), but I am going to get it done in no uncertain terms.

2013 was bittersweet.  There’s a humbling balance to that, though.  With all of its highs and lows, I am thankful for every moment of 2013.  I am looking forward to a new year and a fresh start!

change

Coming To Terms

26 Sep

I can’t even say that my absence has been well spent.  Well spent on working, yes.  But working isn’t what I write a blog about.  I would even venture to say that I’ve been avoiding you.  And avoiding this:  I will not be running The Great Race on Saturday.

I just can’t.  And not like I just can’t because I don’t believe in myself.  I can’t in that I haven’t put my shiny new running shoes on for over a month.  I can’t in that I’m not one of those people who can unintentionally step away from running and then just pick up right where I left off.  I’m also not the kind of person who can admit defeat.  But, here I am.  Coming to terms with the fact that my 2013 race season has ended and it was the year of the 5K.

The year of the 5K wasn’t a bad year.  It was actually my best year ever.  2013 is the year I started running.  Training for and running two 5Ks is nothing at all to be ashamed of.  In the Ole 5K, I surpassed my estimated pace goals by 2 minutes and shocked myself completely.  I learned that I am capable of so much more than I ever imagined.

Ole5K.Halfway

In the John Thompson 5K, I placed third in my age group (I still can’t believe that), despite the fact that I had no idea how much more difficult a trail race is from a street race.

Medal.JT5K

I really feel like I ruled in 2013.   And oh, yeah:  I also whelped a litter of puppies, flipped a friggin’ house, helped run a professional association, not to mention opened a new facility and picked up a ton more work at Changin’ Time.

2013 has been a year of huge personal and professional accomplishments.  2013 has also been a year of coming to terms with the fact that I can’t do it all.  And I have to be okay with that.  I have to take pride in what I have been able to accomplish and use my experience to develop realistic goals of the future.

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