good byes.

“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.” – A.A. Milne

It’s a funny thing, saying good bye. As much as you try you can never quite prepare for it. At parties I like to be the person that hugs and says hello at the beginning and then quietly leaves without notice at the end.

With the most important and intimate of relationships though, the one on one stuff, as difficult as a face to face good bye can be I do believe they are necessary. Taking a moment to say good bye to one another in person provides a formal moment within which to say whatever might be necessary, a moment to pause and recognize what is happening before you turn and go. How ever you may react to the moment there is a beauty in the exchange, in the acknowledgement of what transpires.

A connection is created adding strength across the distance that is about to grow between you.

I’m going to have to say good bye to my beloved ACF community for several weeks. Much past attempting 13.4 and getting my final 1RM Back Squat and Dead Lift this Saturday, I’m going to be out for six weeks. I’m having minor surgery and unfortunately the recovery requires lifting nothing heavier than 5lbs. For six weeks! I’ve asked the doctor and the nurses in every which way possible if there’s anything I can do other than to NOT LIFT and the resounding answer has consistently come back to me, ‘No.’

You may not lift anything heavier than 5lbs for six weeks.

‘But…I CrossFit!’ I said.

‘Especially no CrossFit,’ was the response.

‘Do you know what this means to me?’ I asked.

‘Do you want to get better?’ They responded.

‘Fine,’ I said, feeling uncertain and defeated.

So here I am forced to sit on the sidelines. What an incredibly uncomfortable feeling. All I can think about is the gains that will be lost. All my hard work sidelined and left to atrophy. What will happen to my strength? Will I gain weight? This explains why I’ve been OD’ing on CF this past month, signing up for every seminar, volunteer opportunity and WOD as far as the eye can see. Just trying to get my fill. The goal being to step off into this next chapter from the healthiest possible plateau.

People come and go from the ACF community every day. It is a large group of diverse individuals checking their personal shit at the door for an hour or two and jumping in to get stripped to the core so that they can rebuild. An incredibly frightening and uncomfortable process but absolutely integral when building strength and character. Then they go home or back to work or to the grocery store or maybe buy a new pair of kicks.

So as much as I believe in the face to face good bye in the most important of your relationships, in this instance I’m simply going to slip out the back for a while. My hiatus in the scheme of it all is NBD. People walk in and out every day. Some return, some do not.

Of course it’s all no big deal except to me.

ACF has become such an integral part of my life and of who I am. The go to for all things good and bad. Bad day at work, hit a WOD to clear your head. Good day at work, hit a WOD to celebrate. Feeling tired, hit a WOD to get some energy. Feeling anxious, hit a WOD to calm your mood. CrossFit has become a part of who I am.

CrossFit is my sounding board.

So now how to fill those non-CrossFitting hours? Well, for starters being accepted to the New York State Writer’s Institute will help. Classes start this week and go for 9 weeks. Delete CrossFit, insert Writing. It will be good to have another passion to dial into. Then in six weeks if all goes well just as I’m coming out of recovery and able to start training again so the class will draw to a close and my window to WOD will once again open.

I wonder what I will learn during this shift in focus. I wonder where it will lead.

Holiday Buzz.

Holiday Buzz.

You know what it is, that overt ringing in your ears this time of year, the Holiday Buzz. It climbs on top of you the moment you step out the door, or perhaps it’s even ringing inside your house right now; the Holiday music, commercials, lights, balsam scented candles, frantic need to complete each task on your very long list of things to-do before the big day.

I find it ironic, that this is the season of peace on earth and it is anything but peaceful.

We are ever awash in a holiday flood that plugs the senses. Right down to the abundance of holiday cookies in the break room, a feast for the eyes and if you give in, taste buds too. Our mental capacities bobbing in a holiday sea; with more things to do comes stressors about time, with more food temptations at parties and gatherings, a stressor about trying to stay healthy or get healthy. An endless stream of moments of simply trying to make the right choice. On top of this cornucopious holiday pile, add expectations; about family gatherings, time spent with loved ones, not so loved ones, gifts, time, travel, time off from work. The list goes on an on.

If we let it.

Recently I’ve been of the mind frame to turn it all off when I get home. Close the door and turn off the excess lights, the phone, the internet, the TV. No text msgs., no phone calls, no reading the news online, no How I Met Your Mother reruns on TBS.

Instead, maybe a low meditative music playing in the background. One soft table lamp lighting the room. And a good book. Currently, a book about a land far, far away. Of a life I’ve never known. A life I may never have the chance to know. A life lived in the dirt and sand and sun and wild-life rich world of the African outback. A primal land built on a foundation of instinct, invisible sensory, and acute rhythms constructed between the strict unforgiving confines of life and death.

Nature is peaceful. Its rhythms soothing. It is all so much bigger than you and me. I relish the opportunity to step outside the man-powered holiday buzz that booms around us this time of year and get lost in Lawrence Anthony’s world.

Lawrence Anthony recently passed away. It is rumored the two herds of wild elephants that he rescued made a 12 hour trek through the African bush and loitered for two days outside Anthony’s compound to mourn his passing.

status quo

“It’s the friends you can call up at 4 a.m. that matter.” ― Marlene Dietrich

Not much to say, other than it’s Monday, it was beautiful outside, and if I don’t stop living like a hermit I’m going to implode. Need to go on vacation, stay out past 11, stop reporting for duty, and lay a temporary waste to what is currently my routine. For it is only in dismantling that I can happily return to, and function within, for the majority.

WOD:

I. Front Squat

7 – 7 – 7

Completed: first round at 65lbs, then 85lbs, then 95lbs. This last one might be a PR. Form still needs work. Due time. Due time.

II. 4 Rounds For Time:

10 Handstand Pushups with Wall

10 Strict Pullups

10 Pistols (Right Leg)

10 Pistols (Left Leg)

*20 Minute Time Cap

Completed: 11:23. Pistols scaled to squats, 20 per round, with feet together, focusing on getting full depth and knees out. HSPU scaled to Ring Pull Ups, etc.