Reflecting on 2016

                                   

It seems like the common theme among people’s new years eve social media posts is that 2016 sucked. Each person seems to have a different reason or motive, but they all have the same conclusion, 2016=shitty. I disagree. 2016 was an amazing year for me: a year of self discovery, growth, and change. I married the love of my life, my precious second niece was born, we rescued our puppy dog, and I grew closer to some amazing people. I also went to a therapist for the first time this year (something I probably should have done a long time ago). I learned so many things about myself, and I realized a lot about the people I was surrounding myself with. I learned that sometimes you won’t have all the answers, you won’t have “closure” in some situations, and you just have to let shit go. People will disappoint you, certain situations will tear you down, and sometimes you will fail. It’s ok to feel things. It’s ok to ask for help. However, it is not ok to let someone or something control you. Whether it is a mental illness, a person, a life situation, you are the master of your own fate. You control the outcome. You should be your highest priority, and if someone tells you that’s selfish then that someone isn’t looking out for your best interests. Let them go.

I also don’t understand people’s negativity towards goal setting for the upcoming year. “If you’re waiting for the new year to get moving towards your goals then you’re just going to fail. Start now.” I don’t get this mindset. I love the thought of having a fresh start, a blank slate, a new direction. Does it mean 2016 didn’t exist? No. It means, I’m reflecting on what worked and what didn’t, and I’m adjusting. So make that resolution list, and take control of your life!

Here is my list of things I want to focus more on in 2017:

  1. Meditation and self-awareness
  2. Sticking to a stricter gym schedule w/ written goals (I have been feeling really good mentally, and I hope I can continue to overcome the anxiety and self-doubt)
  3. More self control and awareness when eating (I will still be eating my donuts and pizza, but maybe a little less often 😉 )
  4. I want to have a house cleaning schedule. I function so much more efficiently when I am in a clean home, and it helps declutter myself mentally when I am decluttered physically. Purging will be the theme of 2017.
  5. Spending time with Kyle intentionally. We spend a lot of time “together” on the couch watching TV or him playing Xbox while I write or play on my phone. But I want to intentionally invest time and energy in our relationship together with scheduled date nights where we are the focus.
  6. I want to read more. I used to read books constantly. I couldn’t ever get enough. I want to start reading instead of scrolling through Instagram before bed or watching a re-run of KUWTK or Flip or Flop.
  7. I want to drink more water.
  8. I want to start shopping with direction and live more minimally. Instead of buying something because I like it, whether it be furniture, clothes, or household items, I want to buy because I LOVE it and have a purpose for it.
  9. I want to get outside more. I want to walk Georgia at the park or run along the Chattahoochee or hike a new trail. I want to absorb that good ol’ Vitamin D.
  10. I want to eat less red meat and try alternate, non-meat options for protein. I’d like to start working “meatless mondays” into my meal schedule, and see how my body feels.

I’m sure this list will flex and change throughout the year. I just want 2017 to be a year of new adventures, open-mindedness, and flexibility.

What are some of y’all’s goals this new year?

Eating Humble Pie

 

Good morning, everyone! I hope you are having a wonderful holiday season and enjoying yourselves! I just wanted to stop through and share a quick thought that has been weighing on me a little bit lately.

The hardest part for me about getting back to the gym is seeing how much strength I have lost in the down time. I go to throw up some weight that I used to warm up with, and I can barely get under it. Mentally that is the hardest thing to overcome, and today I really had to grit my teeth and remind myself where I started before, and what I went through to make it to where I was at my peak.

I walked into the gym this morning and started my cardio. I despise running and anything cardio related, so I take that as an indication that I should probably do it more often. Anyways, after I finished I walked over to the free weights and started working shoulders. I noticed next to me was a girl shoulder pressing a weight that I really hadn’t tried in a while. It used to be a “warm up” weight for me so I thought (foolishly), “She’s significantly smaller than me (I know, it was an asshole thought) and I can easily do that.” So I grabbed the dumbbells, pushed them to my shoulders and repped out… nothing. Yep. ZERO REPS. I snorted, quickly put the weights back in their rightful place, and grabbed a lighter pair. Did I want to crawl in a hole and die? Most definitely. Did I want to go to the bathroom and cry, because I was quickly reminded of what I am no longer able to do? No doubt. But I didn’t. I complimented her on her awesome body (She was long and lean but very strong), put my headphones back in, and sucked it the eff up.

Theodore Roosevelt said, “Comparison is the thief of joy,” and damn was he spot on.

I just wanted to remind everyone that sometimes you have to take a step back, and be realistic with yourself. It’s something you have to be conscious of every single time you walk into a gym. That girl’s journey is not my journey. Her goals are not my goals. Her future is not my future. And her body is NOT my body. To compare myself to her would not be fair to me or to her. She’s obviously worked hard to get where she is. Instead of trying to skip those steps and jump right back in where I left off, I have to earn that spot. I’ve done it before, I’ll do it again and better.

Happy Holidays everyone!

Love always.

 

Linkin’ Friday

Good morning, y’all! There are 2 more days until Christmas, and I can’t believe the high in Atlanta yesterday was 60 degrees. It was glorious. So here are some things I am loving around the web today to keep your mind off the impending deadline.

We have been eating a dangerous amount of cookies this holiday season. I just want to keep baking and eating and baking and eating. I’ve given up all self control. I also baked this blueberry cake, and it was gone in 2 days. I would probably use a little less blueberries next time. It was a whole lot of blueberries and not a lot of cake.

I got this adorable shirt at a little store called Crafted Westside at Lenox. I guess it is just a pop up shop with locally made items that they set up for the Christmas season. It’s on the top floor next to Bloomingdale’s if you’re interested. We also got a sick print of Little 5 Points by Caleb Morris. He is AMAZING! You have to check out his stuff. We are obsessed.

We got this blender for Christmas from Kyle’s parents, and it works wonders. We used to have this tiny little bullet thing that always left chunks of whatever we were trying to blend no matter how long I left it running. Now we are excited to have actual smoothies instead of lumpy soup drinks. YUM!

These playground insult videos have me cracking up. I love every single one of them.

I’ve been wanting some cute beanies, and I have my eye on this (cute beanie and a great cause? yes please!) and this one.

Anything you have had your eye on lately? A reward for making it through 2016 perhaps?

It’s almost 2017!

Dose of Georgia love.

 

 

 

 

 

10 Things You Should Know Before Joining a Crossfit Box

I have to start out by saying that Crossfit changed my life. I didn’t start Crossfit because I needed to lose weight or because I wasn’t active enough. I joined Crossfit because I loved the idea of having a community that would always be there to encourage me and cheer me on. Unfortunately, I am now at place in my life where it is just not an option for me to pursue Crossfit. I hope that one day in the future I will find myself back in a box doing what I enjoy.

Now on to our list:

  1. If you walked into your local Crossfit affiliate and you did not feel welcome or a sense of community among the other members, LEAVE. That is not the box for you. The main thing that brought me to Crossfit was the sense of belonging. You should always feel like you are part of a family at your box.
  2. If you do not benefit from people constantly encouraging you to get out of your comfort zone and push beyond your limits, Crossfit might not be the place for you. This is something that comes from the community you surround yourself with at a box. These will be people that see you fail time and time again but want you to succeed just as much as you do. If you want to just put your headphones in and have a bro sesh at your local gym slinging weights around by yourself, that’s completely cool and totally understandable. Some people would rather lift that way. However, that is not what you get at a Crossfit box. Some people will claim that Crossfit is the end all be all workout regimen. They will tell you that if you’re not doing Crossfit, then you’re wasting your time. Do not let those people influence you. Do what is best for you.
  3. You do not need to be an elite athlete to join a Crossfit box. What you see on TV during the Crossfit Games is a rarity among the Crossfit community. Do not think that because you have never stepped foot in a gym, you can’t be a crossfitter. I promise, you will meet some of the most diverse people at a Crossfit box, from high school track runners who just want to work on muscle gain to grandparents who want to ensure they see their grandkids grow up.
  4. To build on number 3, you do not have to compete at all. Many people do not join Crossfit to compete. If you simply want to do a WOD (workout of the day) and head home, you will be a part of the majority.
  5. You do not need the latest Crossfit gear to be good at Crossfit. I feel like this really includes all types of athletic activities. You can have the BEST lifters and the most expensive weight belt, but if you don’t know how to use them properly, it’s a waste of time. If you have a comfortable, stable pair of tennis shoes, some running shorts and a t-shirt, you have all you need to be a crossfitter.
  6. If you cannot dedicate 4+ days per week to Crossfit, you probably want to look into other options. Crossfit is fairly pricey, and you don’t want to be wasting your money if you aren’t getting the results. Just like any workout regimen, it needs consistent dedication.
  7. Be prepared to be made fun of when people find out you do Crossfit. People see all the videos online of “crossfitters” with crazy poor form while lifting or “cheating” while doing gymnastic movements. They will talk about the “Crossfit Kool-aid” and how you must be crazy for doing something like this. Unfortunately, people that have not stepped foot in a box or watched a competition do not know how beneficial a real coach can be. As with any gym, if you have a poor coach that is not teaching good form, then you will have clients with bad form. It is the same with Crossfit gyms. Good coaches= safe members
  8. If you have any questions and you do not feel comfortable talking to your coach, this box is not the box for you. Coaches should be able to talk to you in “normal people” terms. If they are talking over your head, their ego will not allow them to be the best coach for you. When I started actually facing my depression, my coach pulled me to the side and had a long talk with me about mental health. He encouraged me to seek help and never made me feel discouraged because of it. Your coach should have your best interests at heart.
  9. When doing a workout, you can adjust your weight and reps as you need. Please do not be intimidated by the WOD you see. If you have any kind of reservations about your ability, respect your body and check your ego at the door. Scale as needed. This is my favorite part about Crossfit. I have never had a workout where someone else there could not participate at all. There is always a modification or scaled option. Do not be embarrassed if you have to modify the workout. There is not a single person at the box that hasn’t had to modify a workout for one reason or another.
  10. Your body will be pushed beyond its limits. You will be sore. Your body will hurt, but you will be amazed at what your body can really do. If you are looking for an easy routine to just say you go to the gym, do not join a Crossfit box, but if you want something different and a group of people to cheer you through every milestone, try Crossfit. You might be pleasantly surprised.
Photo C/O Doug Elser

I hope this helped someone make a decision!

 

The “Realists”

I like to consider myself a realist. At times I might need to have that extra optimistic outlook to overcome some obstacles, but for the most part I am a realist. I prefer to look at the most probable option when it comes to life’s choices and make my decisions based on that. However, I try to make sure that I am still on the positive side of thought. I feel one of the biggest threats to happiness is the pessimist disguised as the realist. I think we all have that one person in our life that always seems to argue or disagree with our choices. That person could be a friend, a family member, or a coworker. This person usually has some perception of your reality and feel that they know better than you. This person tends to have a personal opinion or idea that they present as a better option without first asking further about your situation. They believe that they have lived a longer life, and they know how life goes better than a younger person. They claim their thoughts and ideas are not meant to be negative but realistic. I’m sure most mean well, but they are truly unaware of the damage they are causing. At 23 years old, I have run into people like this often. I grew up a lot faster than the average teenager with significantly more responsibility. I started dating Kyle at 16 and we got engaged at 21. We moved in when we were 21 & 22 before we got married almost a year later. During all of these stages of life, we always had people telling us not to do these things because they “knew better.” These people were staging as realists, but it was very clear they were pessimists. Consciously ignoring these people has been something I have struggled with for a while. Their comments always hung in the back of my mind through other decisions I needed to make. They weighed on my confidence in tough situations as if I didn’t trust myself to do the best thing. It is something I am working on even now. Kyle and I are now looking for a home to purchase to settle down in for a while while I am in school in Atlanta. We really have no desire to continue renting when we know we will be in this area for a significant amount of time. And of course, with life changes there always comes critics. Except this time, I am reminding myself of the above. Their opinion is not my reality. They don’t fully know our plans, goals, or even our fullest capabilities, and instead of letting their perceptions of my reality become my reality, I will choose to be a true realist and drive towards what I know is best. As a “millennial,” I refuse to fall into the constraining mold set forth for my generation. They call it young and naive, I call it blooming and goal-oriented. I will get what I want, and negativity has no place in my mind.

Happy Holidays everyone!

A sweet dose of little Georgia love.