Days 17 – 24 – Lost: Mojo

If we were friends on FB you might notice that my recent posts are trending along the following lines:

First official WOD back at Albany CrossFit in 6 weeks. I’m weak, and slow, my stamina is for sh*t.
But I’m ready.
And oh so happy.

Or, this:

Lost: one tall chick’s Mojo. If found, please feel free to kick its ass.
Reward offered.
Maybe.

Or, how ’bout this:

Last to finish tonight’s WOD, but I don’t mind at all. Patience. Thanks Kim Seevers and Pat Dee for the extra awesome-sauce encouragement. Oh, and for the double rainbow.

So, what’s happening? I’m not really sure. I wrote this whole long drawn out mellow-dramatic email to a friend last night trying to work through the possible scenarios of why I might be feeling so less than motivated; change in staffing, member turn-over, or the obvious like loss of strength and stamina… Am I drinking too much coffee? Has the Whole30 made me too clean? Who knows.

The real point here is this: It’s Life. Change is constant. It will always be this way.

Here’s another news flash: Some days are harder than others. Yep. It’s true. So what do you do?

You have friends that post things like this to your timeline when you’re feeling like a total slacker:

someone has to be awesome339_n

And then if you can, reach out to another friend, an old coach, a mentor, someone that knew you when – that perhaps you have not connected with in a while that knows your history and where you started. Tell them your more recent story and ask them for help.

Ask for help. Reach out.

Maybe they can do something, maybe they can’t, but it will get you telling your story and flushing out what it might be that really has got you stuck. This process in itself can be cleansing.

Then, if necessary, if you start cherry-picking the WODs and making daily excuses as to why you can’t show up, as to why you deserve to eat ice cream out of the container on a daily basis, put out another ask, and another; I’m planning on going to the 5pm, anyone want to meet me? I guarantee a bevy of hands will go up and this will be the greatest motivating factor of all.

Friends encourage friends to do good.

If you’re interested, here’s the email I sent to Dean. It’s been almost a year since training together, and I just need the help, the motivation, the shove off from shore. We meet on Friday at noon.

Hi Dean,
I hope you are well. It’s good to be in touch with you again. I missed you! Sometimes I feel like, where did everybody go?
So, just some personal history, I stopped training for six weeks, beginning in April, for some minor surgery. Had a large fibroid removed (girl stuff…) I’m fine now but lost a lot of my stamina and some strength during the six week hiatus. It’s slowly coming back but I think the one thing I miss most of all in all of this, is: my motivation, my mojo.  Have you seen it?  What happened to it?  I dunno.
I’ve been eating clean, Whole30, the past 3 weeks and that feels good. Other than building up my strength again, I mostly want to work on my form, getting down and under the bar when I clean or snatch. My form probably makes the coaches cry under the privacy of darkness.
I’d like to improve it.
As for measureable goals, I’m going to be hitting DT in the next week probably at 85 or 90lbs, and then plan to do so again at the end of the summer at RX. 105 overhead is a big deal for me. I’m also signed up to compete in the Mass State Strongman on August 10. I can bring the print out with me when we meet.
Anyway, I hope you are well.  Talk to you soon. see you on Friday at noon.
Mary
Here was his response:
Mary, we will find your mojo!!!!!
I feel better already.

Day 2 – Making a come back.

“Why is it,” he said, one time, at the subway entrance, “I feel I’ve known you so many years?”

“Because I like you,” she said, “and I don’t want anything from you.”

― Ray Bradbury

Facebook post: It’s interesting how; Say you’re having a really bad day and your usual way of coping when u get home is to eat a lot of unhealthy food, or have beer or scotch or both, or some other habit u know may not be so good for you – Take those former habits away, and you are forced to create a new routine, a new habit.. It is in that choice of a new habit that amazing things can happen.

***

Today marks 5 1/2 weeks since surgery. The six week mark and the official end to my recovery is Monday, May 13th. My diet has been good for the most part during the last six weeks. My biggest fear of gaining weight not coming true. Mostly because I worked to maintain a pretty strict Intermittent Fasting schedule of one meal a day, usually around dinner time. This was not easy sometimes sinking into extreme bouts of hunger during lunch time at work. Part of me wonders how much of my hunger was fueled by true actual hunger and part of it by simply pushing back against a long well worn habit of eating a salad at my desk. The internal alarms going off in my head telling me it is time to EAT, like punching a clock – it’s time to wake up it’s time to drink coffee it’s time to eat lunch it’s time to take a nap – with no real true indicator from my body as to whether or not it was truly hungry for calories.

Now that it is time for me to return to CrossFit I struggle with stepping back through the doors at ACF and jumping into the daily WOD. We knew this would happen. But why? Is it intimidation? Is it laziness? Fear? Both? Part of it is intimidation, knowing I’m not as strong as I used to be and certainly do not have the stamina I once enjoyed.

Part of it is laziness.

I’m enjoying these long summer afternoons at home after work with Oliver, sitting on the lawn in the settling sun and reading. Even the simplest act of throwing the ball for Oliver gives a great simple pleasure. It’s the trees and the air and the breeze and the warm spring sunlight. It’s Oliver running and jumping and performing stellar acts of doggy strength in every attempt to fetch the ball. I love to watch him go.

It’s me just being.

No where to go nothing to do no one to please or thank or run errands for. On Friday I decided I should change my Facebook status to being in a relationship. In a relationship with the word: Thank You. I employ the word about 8,883,987.25 times per day.

.25 because some Thank You’s are not always as sincere as others.

I work for a non-profit and everyone that walks through the doors, be it a volunteer or a donor or a member in need of our services or even a fellow employee deserves daily doses of honest Thank You’s because we are all there despite best varying degrees of difficulties. As an employee there is no money to be made, a below average standard of living at best, as a volunteer you are sharing the most valuable of commodities, your time and thereby in my mind deserve an extra-special round of gratitude. As a member receiving our services there are probably a hundred million different places you would rather be, but you’re not, because chances are you are sick or are caring for someone who is sick or who has just passed and you are sad.

So many Thank You’s to give.

I am an appreciative person, but doling out so many thank you’s on a daily basis can be exhausting. You tend to give so much of your self, stopping at all points in the day to offer assistance or lend a patient ear or a word of encouragement or additional set of hands to unload a car. The list of needs, the list of opportunities to stop and be patient and be helpful is truly endless. With this list can come a sense of doing good. This is true. But there also comes a point of feeling like a stone with no more blood to give. It’s called being burned out.

My struggle lies in feeling burned out but not knowing what to do about it. It’s not the fault of the people around me that I feel this way. It’s nobody’s fault but my own. But here it is. In all its glory, this feeling that I just don’t want to do what I’m doing anymore and also feeling trapped, not knowing where to go, or what to do, and as an added bonus feeling intensely lonely in all this angst.

Digressing.

Why is it I’m having a hard time getting back to the one thing I do love: CrossFit? I’m not sure. Probably a little bit of all of the above, sprinkled with intimidation and baked with a final dash of laziness. I don’t want to give up the time. The time to do what I want to do in the quiet of my home with Oliver dutifully, silently at my side. Where the only task asked of me is to be fed some kibble and throw a ball and sit with me in the sun or the shade and listen to the birds and the wind and watch the setting shadows.

This, I can do.

But the world waits for no one. And every one needs a Why. So, I must find my Why. And when I find it, I must start doing it. But where to start…

Perhaps the best place to start is the place closest to home. A place where I have immediate and instant control, my body:

Goal No. 1. Complete the Whole 3o Challenge – Join your peers from ACF and from now until June 5 partake in the Whole 30. Get lean. Get strong. Stop the bullshit.

Goal No. 2 – Start WODing at least four times per week. Beginning tomorrow, Wednesday 5/8. Mix it up, stop feeling obligated and create an adventure, meet new fellow CF’ers, hit the noon class, a late 8:30, maybe a morning mayhem, anything… just get yourself through the front door again. And again. And again.

Goal No. 3 – Track all food and workouts here. Every day. Every. Single. Day. Write something. Here. Log it on Double Under Dogs. Be accountable. Do what you love, write.

If I can stick to these 3 Goals, every day, from now until June 5 – then a shift will occur. For just like my post today on Facebook, there is no try, you just do. And by choosing new habits, you slowly but surely start steering the ship in a new direction. With making the right choices, with making healthy choices and creating a new routine and defining a different type of day, you will chart a course in an unimagined direction towards a new and bountiful horizon full of knowing Why.

Finding the Why. Part II.

“He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.” Friedrich Nietzsche

PART II –

I love stories of people leaving their jobs and pursuing their dreams. Love these people and their Exit Letters. Whether it is due to an unexpected and potentially devastating departure like being laid off, or just having had enough and pulling the evacuation chute;  the key is in seeing it all as one giant opportunity – like this gentleman, Richard Tseng, who compared himself to a tough old Eskimo broad.

Perhaps you just finally decide to go it on your own and start your own business, like Mr. Cake in the UK.

mr cake

These stories unite and inspire. They teach that there is indeed more life out there. Potentially the life of your dreams if you haven’t already found it. If you think about it the opportunities really are *fnn endless. You just have to jump.

I’m pretty sure I haven’t found the sweet spot yet. While I do enjoy my job and the community within which I work, there’s a deeper burning that won’t quit. It’s buried deep and it’s always there. It reminds me that the Why for my being –  my own personal elusive quan – is still out there and I just haven’t locked that sucker down yet. Not quite. Therefore I am merely existing. What is that elusive Why? What does it look like? If I had to make a list of Why Characteristics it would look like this:

  1. Connecting
  2. Creating hope
  3. Building something tangible, something good, and making a living at it
  4. The ray of light at the end of dark tunnels
  5. Being my own boss
  6. Building my dream home
  7. Living with humor

I want the knowing of that old Eskimo broad, confident and smart enough to slay the polar bear and feed the entire clan.