Friday, January 3, 2014

Why "Workouts"?

When I graduated from college in 1995 (Go Wellesley Blue!), I graduated with quite a bit of extra weight on me.  It wasn’t that I was inactive in college (I played 4 years of rugby – 7 seasons in all), it was that I was clearly compensating for the activity with way more food than I needed, lots of pizza and beer…

I arrived at my first job overweight and out of shape and I knew something needed to change.  That November, I joined Weight Watchers and started doing a step aerobics video that I bought at my WW meeting.  You know how folks often gain weight between Thanksgiving and Christmas?  I was so fed up with my weight that I joined the week AFTER Thanksgiving and managed to lose 7 pounds before the new year.

When the snow melted, I decided it was time to get moving outside.  My dad had been running for years and he encouraged me to try it out.  I had rebelled against the idea of running from point A to point B for so long but gave it a try.  I was hooked!  Obviously I wasn’t breaking any speed or distance barriers but I was getting out there almost every day and putting the miles in.  I ran a 5K that May and my dad suggested that we run the Falmouth Road Race together that August.  So we did!  And we crossed the finish line holding hands…that was just awesome.

In 2001, I ran my first half marathon and in 2004, I ran my first, second, and third full marathons.  To date, I’ve run 12 half marathons, 8 full marathons, and countless 5Ks and 10Ks.  I’ve run for years with Marathonfest from Track Shack and the friends I’ve made through the program are amazing.

Last fall, my running-partner-in-crime moved away about the same time that I started Crossfit.  I felt my running mojo beginning to disappear slowly but surely.  I joined Marathonfest for the winter session but only showed up a time or two…I just wasn’t that into it.  My other running friends were getting faster or running different intervals (or both!) and I was jazzed about the strides I was making in Crossfit.  I thought it best to step away so that I could miss running for a bit and remember why I loved it so much.

S and I started Crossfit in September of 2012 and really committed ourselves in January of 2013.  I love, love, love Crossfit!!!  It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done (which includes training for a marathon while planning a wedding!) but it is extremely satisfying.  The workouts are intense and varied but we’ve got benchmark workouts that we do at regular intervals to gauge improvements.  There is nothing like getting a PR (personal record) on a lift or finally semi-mastering a certain gymnastics move.  I’ve got a loooooong way to go but I’m certainly stronger than I was last year or even 20 years ago.  I think that’s pretty cool!  I’ve also started Crossfit Endurance which combines elements of CF with running.  My coach is bound and determined to make me faster and he pushes me in every workout.

So – that’s the “workout” part of this blog.  I was never a team sports person growing up (except for rugby – but that was a lot of beer combined with sport) but I discovered fitness once I graduated from college and strive to make it a part of most days.  Sure, there’ve been stretches of time where I have sat on the couch a whole lot more than worked out – but I always come back to exercise as a natural part of my life.  I’m proud to say that I haven’t had one of those stretches since I had foot surgery in April 2012 – and you can bet that I was on the treadmill, elliptical, and exercise bike as soon as my foot doctor gave the okay!

Tomorrow…what the heck is up with the wool?  And maybe some pictures?

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