Monday, December 15, 2014

Motivation and accountability buddies

I don't know what I'd do nor how much I'd weigh without my accountability buddies. Let me begin by saying I'm a very lazy, unmotivated individual when it comes to going to the gym or working out. Even when I get to the gym, I usually don't put forth too much effort, just enough to break a sweat and for at least 30 minutes. Otherwise I'm basically done. Without my husband Vince who motivates me to practice seven star praying mantis style kung fu as much as I can, I'd likely just be a couch potato which is what I was prior to marital arts. I was also about 15 pounds heavier and had no muscle. Without my awesome friend and ex coworker Sarah, I would likely never go running. We run once a week, usually anywhere from 4 to 7 miles, outside until recently when I joined the same gym as her where there's a great track to run on.

Without these wonderful accountability buddies, I would likely never run nor work out at all. They give me so much motivation and make me wonder how people find motivation without someone else working out with them. Even when Sarah is busy or Vince is sick, I find myself still exercising out of habit. I am thankful for them instilling good habits in me. And here's to hoping I don't eat too much this holiday season so that I don't have to run even more miles to make up for it. :-)

Friday, October 24, 2014

Early morning jogs

The past three weeks I've been waking up extra early every Wednesday morning to go for a jog before work. I got the idea after reading a few articles regarding running in the morning: the first one was 12 simple hacks to finally become a morning runner which got my mind going, like maybe I could try this once. Another article I read was about successful people and the good habits they have, one of them being morning runners (ok it says morning exercise but I took that as morning runner). Basically between these two articles which I read both within the same week in September, I gradually came to the conclusion that maybe I should try to become a morning runner.

The first time I tried to go for a run, I set my alarm for 5:45am and got up right away after not sleeping much all night in anticipation for this dreaded run. I had already laid out all my clothes, so I grabbed what I needed, changed and went straight out the door. I was planning to run 2 miles but didn't map my route out at all and it was dark out so I just ran around the neighborhood and only made it to 1.5 miles before stopping. I was so tired from waking up early that I ran slower than normal and found it difficult to go much further once I hit 1.5 miles. I came home, showered, and told myself I'd never get up early and run again.

Despite getting up early, I found myself having more energy the rest of the day and even the rest of the week. Needless to say, my long run with Sarah on Sunday Runday went better than previous ones since I actually ran during the week in addition to the long run. Sarah gave me some motivation and told me to continue running during the week, and since the only time I had to run was before work, I told her I would once again get up early on Wednesday and run. This time went way better, it was a complete 180 from the first run. I ran 2 miles easily, and despite not mapping out my run I found a new route which takes me two miles round trip without crossing any busy streets. The only issue was that I had to run past a small cemetery, and at 6AM it is still pretty much dark out so I was kinda spooked out. For the third run, I simply crossed the street and ran on the side of the street without the cemetery. I have been bringing a small flashlight with me, but since I run on the sidewalk and almost no one is out at 6AM I have yet to even run into any other person and usually only see a few cars on the road throughout my run. I was hoping to go further than 2 miles during the third run, but I snoozed an extra 7 minutes and didn't have enough time to make it further than 2 miles.

I am hoping the next run goes better next Wednesday. I'm hoping to go at least 2.25 miles or maybe 2.5 if I have the time. Tomorrow I'm running 7 miles with Sarah in prep for the Hot Chocolate 15K which is November 9th. Next weekend we're doing 8 miles, then the weekend after that is the 9.3 mile race. :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Robin Williams was just like the rest of us...

I don't know about you, but even after a month and a half, I am still shocked and saddened that Robin Williams passed away. I never met the guy, but from the first time I saw him, I fell in love with him. I was mesmerized by his personality, he lit up the screen whenever he was on it, or even when he wasn't on it and it was only his voice. There was something about him that made me feel like he would make a wonderful father and role model. I thought of him as a comic genius, someone who could make anyone laugh no matter what. Even when he starred in more dramatic roles, he was still captivating. After awhile I thought no actor could match such talent.

After reading most of the article that Rolling Stone put out, I realized that Robin was just like us after all. His childhood was eerily lonely as an only child with parents who were rarely around. Through this, he developed a deep desire to make other people laugh. That is what drove him through life, making others laugh. Over the past few years, his career slowed down and after a show he was to be on cancelled and other movie ideas fell through, he felt like he could no longer make people laugh. His one goal, his one desire, and he never felt good enough at it. Robin never felt like he was talented enough to make people laugh. He was always seeking feedback and encouragement, and was always willing to improve himself.

Robin Williams, this post is for you. You are good enough, actually you're above and beyond good enough. I hope that you knew God in your life and knew that no matter what, you were perfect in His eyes. Everyone feels at some point not good enough at something, or not good enough at the one thing they are actually excellent at. I just want everyone to know God loves you just the way you are, you will always be good enough. Always.

Love and miss you Robin <3

robin williams

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Annual kung fu retreat

This weekend is our annual kung fu retreat in Michigan. While I'm excited to learn and bond with my kung fu brothers and sisters, I'm dreading how sore and tired I'll be afterwards. I'm hoping the weather holds up and everyone has a good time. I can't wait to learn more kung fu and run on the beach. Looking forward to getting back into shape since I haven't been able to attend many kung fu classes lately due to being so busy tutoring. This week was my first week off tutoring in over a month and it feels nice to only have one job to worry about for once. Hoping I survive the retreat and hoping to get more time in the future to go to kung fu.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

New running shoes

So after the second time running 7 miles, my left knee hurt for about a day or two. I took the week off of running but then ran the big ten 10k. My knee hurt for a few days after that and it was way worse. I figured out it was my IT band since it was the outside of the knee and I could feel it go up my leg to my hip. I did some acupuncture and went to fleet feet to get new shoes. The shoes I got are amazing, I've never had such nice shoes before. It totally helped to have someone watch me run and find stabilizing shoes for me. I started up running again last week after a few weeks off and my knee feels great. Gunna try to get my milage back up to where it was with Sarah. We're starting at 4 miles this weekend then will increase accordingly. I'm just glad my knee is better and I can get back running without any major issues. :-)

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Awesome running advice

Finally watched this TED talks video that my friend sent to me a few months ago when we first started running together. We started out running 2 miles once a week together. Today we ran 7 miles for the first time (my first time running 7 miles ever, woo!). My running has been improving and I always try my best to enjoy it. Sarah and I actually carry a conversation the entire time we're jogging, which definitely helps distract the mind from the actual jogging and actually makes jogging enjoyable and fun. Like the video says, even if all you can do is easy, that is enough. Whenever I am out for a jog, I tell myself I am not trying to win a race or go faster by any means, I am just trying my best (the best I can). Even if that means really slow running on a super humid day, it is better than nothing. :)

See Video Here

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Female problems

I wasn't sure whether I should name this blog post female problems or kung fu struggles. The more I thought of my life, the more I realized it comes down to me not only being female, but also a married female who wishes to start having babies within the next few years. I am 27 years old (almost 28, happy birthday to me?) and I am trying to finally get a real job where hopefully I will make real money. I've been applying to 2-4 jobs every day since May and have only received rejection emails and recruiters calling me for customer service/sales jobs of which I have no interest in. Until I get a real job making decent money, I have to tutor ACT on the side just to help pay the bills since my day job doesn't pay me enough to afford things such as food, gas, mortgage, kung fu, etc. And that is where kung fu comes in. 

I can't devote as much time to kung fu as Vince can since I have to work so often just to try and make enough money to pay the bills. Instead of kung fu, I find myself working out in other ways (running, bike riding, etc) because these are things that I can do near my house and only take 30-60 minutes versus driving to kung fu, doing class, then driving home (usually a 2 to 3 hour ordeal). Since I now have to use my weekday nights and weekends tutoring students, it makes a lot more sense for me to go running for 30 to 45 minutes rather than spending over two hours going to kung fu class. This, of course, makes me very sad. I love kung fu, and I only want to learn more and more and continue my studies as much as I can. I try my best to go to class 2-3 times a week, and honestly I feel like it isn't enough. Back when we were a lot closer to the school, I would go 4 times a week on average and I loved it. There were some weeks I went 6 times (technically you could go every day if you wanted to). I can't physically or financially do that now. Even gas money alone adds up (driving there and back is about 20 miles), not to mention the time needed.

All of this brings me to where I am at now. I can't afford to be in the teacher's program. It meets every Saturday morning, religiously, and I need that time to tutor students. Not only that, but the teacher's program costs extra (trust me, Vince and I usually spend an extra $100 a month due to his teacher program, which is fine just adds up quickly). I can't justify 1. taking away time from tutoring and 2. paying even more money which we don't have for kung fu and so I told Sifu that I wasn't interested in the teacher's program. I also want to have babies within the next few years (as I've mentioned before) and once there's kids involved the chances of me actually being able to attend kung fu more than once or twice a week are very very small. Also who would want to babysit for a few hours around 8am every Saturday? Just saying.

I guess my point is, because I am female and because I don't make enough $, I can't do the teacher's program in kung fu. The worse part is that I am not allowed to see any black belt tests (we have two this summer). I was really looking forward to seeing one if not both of the black belt tests, but instead I get to sit at home and imagine what the test would be like. If only I was making enough money to actually invest in myself instead of just trying to pay my bills. Here's to hoping that one of these tons of jobs I'm applying to actually call me for an interview one of these days soon. Then, maybe I can consider working slightly less hours and trying to do slightly more kung fu. :)