Whelp, I think it’s officially safe to say I’m the worlds worst blogger. Okay, probably not. But I definitely make top 100 😉
I haven’t posted since March. It’s July. H E L L O.
In my last post I told you all that I was having a rough semester with school but despite a not so stellar beginning my plan was to stick it out and roll with the punches. I think this is a good starting place for this post considering the semester is now over.
I finished all but one course and they weren’t my finest but I got the grades I
needed wanted and I’m happy/content/proud of myself for getting through it because there were moments I was convinced I was going to fail and have to drop out of school. Dramatic and catatrophizing much? Nah…. The course I didn’t finish I ended up taking an incomplete in. What this means at my university is that I have to wrap up all coursework by mid-semester of the following semester (so, October). After a MUCH NEEDED break, I’ve been cranking this out like nobody’s business and I think it’s safe to say I’m back b*tches.
It truly amazes me how our bodies know when something has to give. Even just these past two months of no school have helped tremendously. Having taken classes consistently fall/spring/summer for the past three years didn’t seem that tough or mentally draining throughout the process but I hit a wall this past Spring semester. A giant, impermeable at the time, wall.
So this summer… it’s quite different. School, for the most part, isn’t in the picture. I’ve been working, but not “over working”. I bought a bike I can’t afford because #YOLO. I am hiking, biking, running, and yoga-ing a bunch. I went cold turkey on the gym for two weeks and am now only lifting 1-2 times a week versus 5. The weather is beauteous and I much prefer being outside than inside a gym. Also, my bod seems to greatly appreciate this change up. I feel AMAZING – physically and mentally. The reduced lifting schedule actually gives my body a hot .02 seconds to actually recover and have a greater capacity to grow stronger which I’m already seeing. For years I wanted to reduce gym time but my brain was all like 1. you’ll lose muscle, 2. you’ll get out of shape, 3. you’ll relapse, 4. people will think less of you, 5. you won’t be a badass, 6. you will have to eat less, 7. your identity is largely comprised of being a “fitness” person so cutting back isn’t great, 8. what personal trainer reduces their workouts. YEAH, so my brain was pretty highly involved in my continuation of destroying my body on a daily basis for years. You know what I have to say to all of those reasons? They’re terrible. Destructive. Self-deprecating. Catastrophizing. Useless. Minimizing my worth.
In order to work through all of those completely irrational fears I pretty much needed to go cold turkey. It sucked for the first week. I was sore, very sore. I couldn’t tell you the last time (prior to taking time off) that I had been sore when lifting regularly. I didn’t feel things anymore, and I’m not saying this to brag… this ISN’T a good thing. During off weeks (every 4-6 months) I would get extremely sore/achy, but nothing otherwise. Initially when going cold turkey I was terrified I would be sore all the time and it would never go away. Well, you know what, after about 5 days I felt good. And then I felt excited for a change. And, now, two months later, I haven’t looked back and I’m in a better relationship with my body than I have been since before my eating disorder began 14 years ago. So, there’s that.
The transition from lifting regularly to outside adventuring regularly has been an interesting one. I feel very very at peace. Like, almost eerily at peace. I think because I’m not used to having a semi-healthy relationship with myself and/or my body. I feel like this switch was one of the best decisions I could have made despite the plethora of fears. For a while now I’ve been craving less gym time and more outside time, doing what I love. Don’t get me wrong, I dig lifting, that’s why I’m still doing it twice (or even once sometimes) a week. It feels good (when I’m properly rested). It actually feels BETTER now that I’m doing less of it… who woulda thunk it? Let your body rest and grow and it will feel better when under pressure? Huh… novel concept. Not a rocket scientist or anything but I’m a big fan of how things are going inside the gym. So, I love lifting. But, I NEED the time outside. I believe this is the key difference and why the change up not only has stuck but I also feel like I’m thriving. I needed it. Physically, mentally, emotionally, all of it.
I’ve talked before about how the gym neutralizes itself between pros/cons so to speak. It’s very stimulating for me, almost too stimulating. But, I enjoy it. For me, going to lift was never a stress reliever because it was equally as stressing as relieving. Opting for less time in the gym has a two fold benefit I’m finding because I’m not receiving that stimulation as often. As a result I mentally feel better and I’m also much more tolerant when I’m there (i.e it’s not as overly stimulating). This realization is something I’ve began noticing within the past two weeks or so and it feels very grounding.
Two months out from the semester ending and I feel like an entirely different person. It’s a bit nutty, but I’m going with it. In a sense, I feel like I’m doing what I’m being “called” to do for myself. Nothing at the moment feels unbearable. Sure, there are things which are stressful, overwhelming, and a whole lot of uncertainty can easily begin to fill my mind as I wrap up my degree and look ahead at the future. And, you know what, I’m embracing it for what it is because at the end of the day stressing out over everything isn’t worth it. I’m tired of fighting myself, I’m tired of the endless circles in my mind which lead no where except adding more angst to my life, I’m over pursing things not meant for me, I’m done with giving a crap about how people think I should live and go about my life. At this time, my biggest priority is healing the relationship I have with my being and moving forward in a way that is equally supportive to my healing and supportive to my growth.
What do I have to say about that?
“There are moments which mark your life. Moments when you realize nothing will ever be the same and time is divided into two parts, before this, and after this. Sometimes you can feel such a moment coming. That’s the test, or so I tell myself. I tell myself that at times like that, strong people keep moving forward anyway, no matter what they’re going to find.” — John Hobbes
For now, I leave you with MANY MANY pictures from adventuring.
“Don’t worry if people think you’re crazy. You are crazy. Strive to have that kind of intoxicating insanity that lets other people dream outside the lines.”