Consistently… Running

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Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about running. Why you may ask? I’ve been asking myself the same question. I used to love running… well let me digress. I started off with a slight disdain for running, then after running consistently, I began to tolerate it, which then turned to love.

Then I hurt my knee, actually I tore the meniscus. I had to have surgery. My doctor told me I wouldn’t be running marathons ever again. Now, this isn’t a story about how I overcame an obstacle, told my doctor to shove it and have been running marathons ever since. No, it’s about how I used an injury as an excuse and now I’m paying the price for it. A cautionary tale if you will.

When I was told I probably wouldn’t be running any more marathons I thought, great. I’ll just run my 3 mile days and be fine. Then I just found that I stopped running unless it was in a WOD and usually no further than 400 meters at a time. So when I would run, my knee would blow up and ache and that gave me all the more reason to stop running. I didn’t realize that it was scar tissue that I needed to break up and work through. Instead, I used it as an excuse and now I’m trying to get back into running. Why you might ask? Because when I travel I love using running in order to see the new city I’m traveling to or explore more of a city I know.

How will I do it? With anything, it’s about consistency. In order to progress, to see results, you have to be consistent, even when you don’t want to be. Even when your body is screaming at you and your knee wants to buckle. Even if you had a late night or have been trapped in a car for 8 hours and all you want to do is nothing.

Consistency is the key to progress in anything you do.

Think about it, many people who start working out, do it because they want to make a change. For many it’s because they want to lose weight, but how did they add all those pounds? By consistently making bad choices in eating and choosing not to exercise. How did I get so bad at running? By consistently making excuses when my knee ached and not doing it.

See it’s all about consistency. You just have to choose what you want to be consistent about. Making yourself better or letting yourself go? Any elite athlete didn’t get to be where they are by just talent. It takes a lot of hard work and consistently trying to improve.

This week I’m not going to give you a travel workout.

Instead, I want you to think about something that you want to change and make a plan to be consistent and change it. Know that anything worth having is not going to be a quick fix. It’s going to take time and effort, you’re going to have days where you want to say “fuck it” and you’re going to have days where you feel like you can conquer the world. Try to remember the conquering days and try to dismiss the “fuck it” days. No matter what know it’s a journey. One where you’ll learn a lot about yourself. Until next time.

The Good Old U.S of A.

I’ve been thinking a lot about travel, it is a passion after all, but I started to think about all of the places I can visit within the US. So I think I’m going to make it my priority to explore America this year. I’m still headed to Europe in February but after that it’s on to the States.

I live in a pretty great country that is extremely diverse. We have everything from tundra to tropics, desert and deciduous. We have many different cultures and speak many different languages. We are explorers born and bred, that’s how our nation was founded. America is a melting pot and I want to see what else it holds.

There are some things I will need to make this happen.

1). An America the beautiful park pass. If I’m going to see this country I want to see as many national parks as I can.

2). A map. We are in a time of GPS, but I still experience dead spots. In order to avoid this a map will come in handy.

3). My car. I have a Mini Cooper. It is my dream car and I think it’s fitting to take this her on these adventures with me.

Of course I’ll have my camera and will video all my expeditions. My job allows me to work from anywhere…within the whole of the US (which I just learned), so let’s explore. There will be no shortage of things to do. Festivals, celebrations, parks, natural wonders and the world’s biggest ball of yarn…I think I read that somewhere, maybe it was the biggest ear of corn. Either way. Regardless I’ll learn more about the history of America and that’s beautiful. Until next time.

Rainy Day Weekends

So earlier I wrote about what you can do if you’re snowed in. It’s raining today in Vegas, a rarity for sure. Coupled with that it’s chilly and I want to do is sit on my couch wrapped in a blanket, watch movies and eat popcorn. Instead I’ll start a project. Here are some rainy day activities you can do, but don’t just save them for when it’s raining you can do them when you’re bored too!

  1. Read a book. Some of you may not like to read, but I love it. I love imagining different worlds and stories. For me it’s fun to get whisked away to some far off land. Don’t have the attention span for a book? Read an article, or a blog.
  2. Clean out your closet. Everyone could do with a good closet cleaning. There are definitely items every person could get rid of and what a better time then when you’re stuck at home.
  3. Invite friends over for a movie day/or a wine and cheese day. Who says you have to be stuck at home alone. Invite some friends over and spend the rainy day together. Or you could have your movie/wine and cheese day all to yourself. You’re allowed to be indulgent once in a while.
  4. Clean your house/apartment. What else are you going to do? Oh anything else on the list, but it is a great time to get this “chore” out of the way.
  5. Create a bucket list. Make a list of all of the things you want to do in your life. Then jump on the internet and see how you can make one of them happen in the next week or month! This kills two birds with one stone. You’re planning something fun for the future and giving yourself something to do in the process.
  6. Work on something for yourself. Maybe you’ve always wanted to start your own blog or YouTube channel or maybe you’ve always wanted to learn how to edit your own photos and video. Download some software and start learning a new skill.
  7. Bake something! Is baking harder than cooking? Yes but the nice thing about baking is if you follow the recipe to the letter, it’s hard to mess up. So make yourself a treat.
  8. Create an indoor pillow/blanket fort. Do something you used to do as a kid on days when you can’t get out or don’t want to leave. Just because you haven’t done it in a while doesn’t mean it should be forgotten. Building forts and tunnels are fun for everyone. After you can hang out in your cave and take a nap.
  9. Work out. There are thousands of different types of workouts that you can do while at home. Jump on YouTube and search for something to make you stronger or more flexible then go do it.
  10. Learn something. Knowledge is power. Have you ever wanted to know what kind of medium Dali used for his art? Maybe you’ve always wanted to know more about the people who live in Alaska. Take the time to do some research and learn something new.

What are some of the things you like to do on a rainy day? Let me know below! Until next time.

WOD Wednesday

OK two weeks into the new year, how is everyone doing? I just want to take a quick minute and talk about listening to your body. With the new year comes new resolutions and a gun ho attitude to do more and get into shape. Please, please listen to your body. Back at the gym today I was talking with one of my friends and he mentioned that there are a lot of people with injuries right now…but not me!

Last month I was feeling very beat up and broken so I listened to my body and took a little bit of time off from CrossFit, scaled my workouts and incorporated more yoga. Today I feel great. I urge all of you to scan your body and assess. Make sure you’re not injuring yourself in the process of trying to erase your holiday glutton. Fitness and health are long-term investments and they are only achieved by consistency and being smart. Ten years of eating poorly and sitting on your rear cannot be erased in one month! Be kind and patient with yourself. You’re doing something amazingly selfish and wonderful for your well-being. Don’t ruin it by being over zealous.

Am I telling you to cut back on your workouts? Hell NO! Go to the gym. Work out consistently. Set goals and enjoy the process but listen and understand the difference between sore and hurt. I’m giving you the warm up I gave to my CrossFit class this morning for your WOD today. Enjoy!

What you’ll need: Jump Rope, Ab Mat (if you have one) somewhere to run.

5 Rounds for time:

10 Ab Mat Sit ups or Straight leg roll ups.

50 Double Unders or 100 Single jump ropes

10 Push Ups (can be done from knees, make sure you’re maintaining that core)

3 Inchworms with a push up

Run one lap (100 meters)

Let me know what you think in the comments below. This should take you around 15-20 mins. Until next time!

 

Where To Go for First Time Solo Travelers.

This is a topic with many different opinions. With the world becoming increasingly smaller and much of the world speaking English it’s not as scary to venture into a foreign speaking country anymore.

I love traveling to new places where I might not know the language so that I can experience something all together new. Experiencing new things is a journey all itself. The first time I traveled on my own was to Italy. I was supposed to go to Italy and Croatia with my boyfriend at the time. We broke up, I couldn’t find anyone to take his place, and I was damned if I wasn’t going to go on this trip. So I went, by myself. It was August, I was in Venice and I am not exaggerating when I tell you that everyone was coupled up. I wanted to scream but I also learned how to be ok by myself and it’s one of the best lessons I could have ever learned.

Traveling by yourself is scary for sure and the first time can be daunting. Here are some countries that can ease that transition.

The UK. Anywhere in the UK is a perfect jump off for anyone wanting to solo travel. Granted it may be a bit expensive but everyone speaks English and the rail system is pretty great.

Australia/New Zealand. Located on the other side of the world and it will take you a full day to get there but much like the UK you will not have to deal with a language barrier. Make sure you give yourself at least two weeks when traveling there. The flights there and back will eat up at least a full day on each end.

Canada. The sister country to the US, at least that’s how I see it. When I worked for Sotheby’s our librarian had to get her visa renewed and I remember looking at her as if she were silly, then I remembered ‘Oh yeah, Canada is another country!’, I know silly but because Canada is so close we tend to forget they are another country. If you live in the US this is a great country to visit. Amazing natural beauty and the Canadian dollar is worth a little less so it will tend to be a more on the inexpensive side.

Western Europe. Want a little more culture and have to deal with a little bit of a language barrier, you’ll find what you’re looking for in the countries of Western Europe. Sip sangria in Spain, eat pretzels in Germany, try Norwegian Salmon in Norway, the possibilities are endless. With the Eurorail pass you can visit many of these countries on one trip and get a good sampling of Western Europe while traveling on your own.

Travel really is about exploration so where ever you choose to travel solo your first time will be a time you won’t forget. So take the plunge and enjoy the adventure. Until next time!

Inspiration Monday: Camp Rhino

When I moved out to Las Vegas last year, I was convinced that no matter which CrossFit box I ended up at, it would become my home. I would have a built-in network of friends and it would be a seamless transition. It would take 6 months before I found my home and a year before I felt like I had friends and it’s all because of Camp Rhino.

I tried out the box on a whim. One of my best friends was visiting from home and we dropped into Camp Rhino. Walking in, you expect a typical box with a “waiting area” a WOD area and maybe a free area for stretching, but what we found was so much more. Upon walking in there were huge obstacles stretching the length of the gym space. Walls and monkey bars, salmon ladders and ropes, a virtual playground indoors. We had to try, and we did, after we tackled a great CrossFit class. The coaching was thoughtful and the WOD was brutal.

But it wasn’t just the workout, the people in the class were immediately accepting. They wanted to know about me and if I was coming back. Did I want to be shown around? Did I like it here? I loved it. I found a Groupon for a month trial and thought I should give it a go. I had no intention of coaching, I thought I would just try to be member. Within a week I was back coaching and loving it. I quickly became friends with my 6am Rhinos and within a few months started learning how to coach bootcamp classes.

I found a kinship with Julie Johnston, the owner of Camp Rhino, and she has been amazing to work for. At the end of the day I just didn’t find a gym…I found a family, and that’s what we are here at Camp Rhino. This community, who looks out for each other and laughs with one another. Who greets a long-lost member as if he never left and calls when a member stops coming. There’s no separation of disciplines. We have bootcamp, CrossFit, Ninja Warrior and Strongman all under one roof. It doesn’t matter if you’re a bootcamper, or a Ninja, we all take each other’s classes and hang out together.

I am inspired every day by my Camp Rhino family. By their drive, their determination, their community and their friendship. We are a team, we are a family, we are Camp Rhino. Until next time.

Why I believe Art Education is Important.

Arts education is something near and dear to my heart. I am after all a product of it. I have my BA is Art History and my MA in Art Business. As I studied my degrees I saw how important arts education was. It not only helps people to become more cultured but it helps us to better understand the world we live in.

Throughout history we have had artists depicting what life was like. It’s through these depictions that we gain an understanding. A visual understanding that perhaps our analytical mind could not comprehend. We can read all we want about what life was like or how a Spartan’s manner of dress looked but if we didn’t have the illustrations, the art, to accompany it, it is left up to many different interpretations, and perhaps not the correct ones.

Most people are visual learners. It can be described to us but unless we have a picture in front of us or a video describing what needs to be done, we tend to not fully understand. I fall into that category and probably why I love art. Art is found in the everyday and enriches our lives. It is the buildings you live in or the logo of your favorite beverage. It’s how we identify with each other and the world around us.

So the next time you think arts education is unnecessary or unneeded, think about the plates that you eat from or the cups that you drink out of, someone created them. Realize that art is all around us and is apart of our everyday. Noticing the beauty in the everyday makes our lives that much brighter. Until next time.

Inspired by Strongmen and Strongwomen.

I worked at the gym on Sunday and got to hang out with the Strong Men/Women. Inspiring people each and every one of them. They defy the norms and that is something to celebrate. These individuals don’t care what you look like, whether you’re short or barrel like, they care about one thing, that you try to lift big weights!

They work with random instruments… the log press, the yoke, the circus dumbbell and atlas stones. They push and pull weights and we wonder how the hell do they lift that heavy? How are they pulling that truck?! They push their bodies to extremes…just like any other athlete and it may not be pretty but damn if it’s not impressive.

The first time I tried strongman I was nervous. There was no way that I was going to lift that truck tire before me. Once I had the technique down nothing was stopping me and I literally felt like I could lift anything!

If you’re looking to build strength and you’re not interested in going to a gym or doing cardio, try strongman. It’s a lot of fun, you get to play with some awe inspiring tools and you feel cool doing it. If you’re wondering where to find out more about it most CrossFit gyms will have a contingency that does strongman on the side. Same at my gym. For more information you can click on the links below. Until next time.

 

World’s Strongest Man: http://www.theworldsstrongestman.com/

Complete guide to Competitive Strongman: http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/complete-guide-to-competitive-strongman.html

Where are you headed this weekend?

It’s a questions we ask when we come in contact with a friend or family. Most of the time we respond with not much or same old. Don’t you want to have something else to say? A story to tell? So get out and do something! Here are some events that are happening this weekend…around the world.

Go to an Art Festival. I talked about it earlier this week but this weekend Art Basel is happening in Miami, FL. Art festivals are wonderful not only because you are experiencing culture and art but it’s fantastic people watching!

Run a Road Race! Krampusnacht Festival in Klagenfurt, Austria is a festival that celebrates Krampus (that’s the bad Santa Claus). On December 5th you can participate in a road race that incorporates a pub crawl and then shop their Christmas market, while being pursued by revelers dressed up like Krampus. (yay…)

Attend a Music Festival. Dominican Holidaze is a music festival in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, December 1-5th. You can watch a variety of bands play while participating in all the extras the resort has to offer.

Hit up a Film Festival. Other World Austin is a Sci-Fi film festival held December 1-4th in Austin, TX. This is a must see for any Trekkie. Not only are you able to view new and independent films but attend parties too!

It’s that time of year to visit a Christmas Festival. Christkindlmarkt in Bethlehem, PA is set for December 1-4th this year. The festival not only hosts a Christmas Market but plenty of activities for the family to enjoy. You can view a glass blowing demonstration, visit with Santa Claus, go for a sleigh ride and watch ice carving.

So get out this weekend and do something fun that will make your friends and family envious…or take them with you! Everything is better when it’s shared. Until next time, life happens, travel now!