Favorite Things: February 2-8, 2019

favorite things

Happy Friday! This is the last weekend for the big two days — the dissertation defense and public presentation. I have been a bundle of nerves these last few days, especially as I begin to work on my presentation. What am I going to say? What if it is boring? I will admit that it has been hard to stay calm and an emergency double-bacon cheeseburger from a new burger place was ordered last night. Do not judge me.

So — not much is planned for this week. I have some family coming up for the presentation, so the house will have to be cleaned, the presentation written, and hopefully some time spent outside to calm my frazzled nerves. Assuming all goes well, this will be the last weekend when someone asks what I’m doing, I’ll respond, “I have to work on my dissertation.” I hope to end it on a high note.

Here are a few favorites for this week:

Appropriate for my birthday week.

I agree. Getting a Ph.D. is harder than running a marathon.

I love Allie Kiefer.

And Liza Howard might also be my new hero.

An article about mental toughness and running, but I think it is helpful for all aspects in life.

This cracked me up: pretentious foodie mom declares child will never eat from kid’s menu.

Great article on Crossfit and pregnancy.

Happy a great and relaxing weekend!

Advertisements

February 2019 Goals : The Year of 1% Better

books, crossfit, goals, pregnancy, reading, running, year of 1% better

I officially have 364 days left of being in my twenties. Yes, yesterday I turned twenty-nine. I celebrated by taking the day off any dissertation/Rousseau-related/job search work. I read books on the couch, did my first Cindy wod at CrossFit, and Bruno made crab cakes for dinner and homemade brownies for dessert. I was in bed by nine — a great start to my 29th year.

If you’re new here, or if you just need a refresher, I declared 2019 the year of 1% better. You can read January’s goals here and how I did here.

And now we are in the second month. January seemed to go on forever, but we already only have around three weeks of February left. I assume, because it is a big month for, that it will fly by.

Here are the goals/things I want to work on this month:

GET MY PH.D. I defend my dissertation next week Wednesday and give a public lecture on my dissertation research on Thursday evening. I’m not sure if that makes me “officially” a Ph.D. or if I still have to use Ph.D. candidate until I graduate, but one thing is for sure — if all goes well, I will be finished with my requirements for my doctorate. As with last month’s goal to submit my dissertation, this is the most important goal. All else can go to pieces, but this, this is years and years of work about to come to an end.

DIGITAL MINIMALISM. I am reading Cal Newport‘s new book, Digital Minimalism at the moment. I have always had struggles with social media. I’ve never been a Twitter person, but I can find myself sucked down the facebook, instagram, and just web-searching wormhole too frequently than I care to admit. I have failed too often in my battles against the internet, so I’m hoping to use some of the advice from this book to help. For now, the goal is to keep my social media use restricted to Saturdays — so far this has been working. I have not even been on facebook to see my birthday messages. Look ma, no facebook or instagram on my phone!

BIKE 20 MINUTES/WEEK. I know in the grand scheme of things is not very much, but as with running and swimming I am not sure how my hips and pelvis will react to time on the trainer. I’m starting here and if it goes well, next month I will increase. I suspect this also for mental training, because in case you did not know, cycling on a trainer is one of the most boring things you could ever do. It makes running on a treadmill seem like an entertaining time.

WALK (OR RUN) 30 MINUTES 2X WEEK. Like I said, trying to be moderate in my expectations. Some days I feel great, some days I really do not. I would really like to start running again, especially after I defend, but I am just not so sure if it will happen. Walking, at the very least, will get me outside.

PRE-NATAL YOGA 2X WEEK. Jasyoga has a few prenatal videos that I need to be more consistent about cycling through. I am hoping that if I hold myself accountable maybe, just maybe, those ligaments will start to feel better.

CathLIT2019. I am still working through some of the suggestions on Carrots for Michaelmas’s Catholic reading plan. I am currently reading Jesus of Nazareth by Benedict XVI and I love it. The one book a month plan is working out well for me thus far, but we will see what happens when baby gets here.

I think those are goals a-plenty for the month I’m planning on completing my doctoral requirements. What are your goals for February?

 

Monday Miles: January 28 – February 3, 2019 (22 Weeks Pregnant)

crossfit, monday miles, pregnancy, training

I am still not running, nor doing much of anything except for going to CrossFit. For whatever reason, this is the only thing that does not exacerbate my pelvic pain at the moment. I can modify everything that does. I cannot really modify running. Either I’m running, or I’m not. There is not in between. And frankly, the pelvic pain is getting worse anyway. I had a hard time all this weekend just simply moving around and I did not work out at all. A phone call to the chiropractor is on my to-do list for today, so hopefully she will get me straightened out.

This upcoming week I would like to focus on doing a little more Jasyoga to see if that helps with the pain. I have not been as consistent at stretching as I frankly should be, so that will definitely be something to work on as the weeks get closer and closer to the due date, even if I cannot run or do anything else.

The good news is my ankle is feeling a million times better. I barely even notice that there is a problem with it today, so hopefully the next time we have double-unders in programming I can keep working on them. Plus, that will give me a good idea on how cranky or not cranky my ankle is from the hopping up and down.

1 – 28 : CrossFit. 3 x 5 Overhead Squats — all at 45 pounds. I tried to go higher, but I failed 50 pounds, even though my PR is 55 pounds. I just did not have it in me. 3 x for reps : 30s air squat, 30s rest, 30s Russian kettle bell swings @ 35 lbs., 30 s rest, 30 s plate over-head lunges @ 10 lbs., 30 seconds rest. For air squats: 16, 18, 20; for kettle-bell swings: 13, 15, 15; for over-head plate lunges: 13, 15, 15. I am glad I ended with a higher number than I started.

51341540_2919396128074328_9088722063346106368_n

Box step-ups. 

1 – 29 : CrossFit. 5 x 10 pike push-ups, 10 box step-ups, 10 box-dips, 100 feet dumb-bell farmer’s carry — first 3 rounds carried 20 lbs., 4 + 5 carried 25 lbs.). I did this in about 16 minutes 27 seconds.

1 – 30 : CrossFit cancelled due to being super cold in Michigan.

1 – 31 : We had a prenatal appointment during our typical Crossfit time, so did not go. Everything on the baby looks good, although we have to get a growth ultrasound in a few weeks to take another look at the kidneys.

2 – 1 : Starting off the month right. CrossFit. 16.3 AMRAP 10 power snatches @ 35 lbs., 5 jumping chest-to-bar pull-ups. I managed four rounds.

2 – 2 : Rest.

2 – 3 : Rest.

Totals: Three hours CrossFit.

Onward!

Favorite Things : January 26 – February 1, 2019

favorite things

Happy Friday, all! If you are in the mid-west, I hope you are surviving. I was outside for just a bit today after CrossFit and it felt really pleasant outside. It was in fact 12 degrees. Crazy what a few days of -40 degree weather will do to how you feel the cold! On Sunday when it will be 48 degrees, it will feel like summer!

I have a short list of links for you this week. I’ve been kind of watching my internet time while I am trying to get things done, so not as much web surfing was done. That said, it did end up being a productive week. That Cal Newport might be onto something.

Fun fact: Not exercising may be worse for you than smoking.

I will be following the Foodie Runner’s post-partum running journey very closely. Even though I know everyone’s experience is different, I kind of want to know what a return to running post-partum looks like. I did enjoy another one of her posts on running while pregnant.

Making fun of the bourgeois Peloton bike advertisements.

Perhaps controversial, but I think this article by Lionel Shriver on our indictment of art during the #metoo era worth thinking about.

Have a great weekend!

January 2019 Goals : How Did it Go?

crossfit, goals, pregnancy, running, swimming, year of 1% better

We’ve reached the end of the first month of the year! I’ll admit, it felt like a long month. Not a bad month, but it just sort of felt like it was January forever. I have a suspicion though that February will fly by — not because it is short, but because it is my dissertation defense month.

Inspired by James Clear’s Atomic Habits, I declared 2019 the year of 1% better. Though I did have some big goals like running one thousand miles, mainly I just wanted to work on little things, little habits. Part of this is because so much of 2019 is up in the air with a baby coming late May/early June and not even knowing where we will live, work, etc. (I’m not stressed, I’m not stressed, I’m not stressed) next year. I did not want to make a grand goal, get attached, and have something out of my hands happen. The other reason is that I am still convinced by Clear’s arguments. Do small things and eventually they will make a big difference.

So how did January’s 1% better goals go? Quick review: I wanted to submit my dissertation, run ninety-one miles, practice double-unders 3x a week, do not go out to eat (unless, of course, someone invites us out), swim 1x a week, read a book on Catholicism, and poach an egg.

I’ll begin with the most important. I submitted my dissertation last week Friday. And yes, I feel as weird about being done as I expected. This was the most important thing I had to get done this month. All else could slide (and as you’ll see did slide), but this was my baby, so to speak. A project I began working on in the spring 2017 is beginning to be over, although I suspect I’ll be stuck with Jean-Jacques Rousseau for awhile. I’m committed, ha!

The goals to run/walk 91 miles and to practice double-unders 3x a week did not happen. I am not one to offer excuses, but this was a little bit out of my control. I’ll offer the excuse of pregnancy. A couple weeks ago I had excruciating pelvic pain. I sat down on the couch and just could not get up. It is significantly better now, although definitely still there. It does seem, though, that running aggravates it. I have a pre-natal appointment today and I plan on talking about it, but it was a real bummer. To add injury to injury, I messed up my left ankle while attempting to do double-unders the other week. Granted, it also is doing much better. It was black and blue and swollen. Now, two weeks later, it is just swollen. Still, I’m calling the double-unders a win. Even with the little bit of extra work I did put into them before ankle-gate, I could tell I was improving. They were not beautiful, but my double-under attempts in work-outs actually began to include actual double-under successes. I feel confident that when things start to get better and I work on them again, I will begin to improve in no time. I cannot do double-unders, but I definitely became 1% better.

I only swam twice this month. I’ll admit, I love swimming, but it is really hard to get motivated. Also, currently, my swimsuit does not fit and when I put it on, I can actually hear, “I am the egg man. Whooo. They are the egg man. Whooo. I am the walrus…” I ordered a new one, a bikini even (giving that belly some room!). And it did not fit. Ok, these are excuses. Still, that is two times more than December and I love being able to swim with a watch.

We only went out to eat by ourselves once this entire month. Our reason was to celebrate me finishing and submitting my dissertation which it seemed required a little more fanfare and getting out of the house. With other people, I think we went out to eat twice. We used to go out to eat about three times a week, whether that was picking up sandwiches or whatever. I am calling this a huge success and I’m hoping to keep it up. As I said, it is not like the food around here is spectacular. It is just sheer laziness that led us to eat out as much as we did. Plus, not eating out has had led to other good habits such as finally starting to meal plan and prep. Successfully.

I’m doing the Carrots for Michaelmas CathoLIT2019 reading challenge, as a sort of over-all goal for the year. I finished my first Catholic read for the year with True Devotion to Mary. I usually read in the mornings, so this has actually been a pretty easy habit to incorporate.

Did I poach an egg? You should know better than to even ask. Those eggs have only been boiled (eaten with some delicious Maldon salt, oh my goodness the best discovery of 2019 so far) or fried over-medium in January. Maybe next month?

How have your 2019 goals been going? Did you have specific January goals?

 

 

 

 

What I’m Loving Lately V

books, daily life, dissertation, food, music

Before I even get started, I should say that what I am loving lately the most is heat and our furnace. I am loving modernity and the industrial revolution, because I feel like I am living in a Jack London novel. I am loving that I have a flexible schedule that allows for me to stay home all day if I want to. Being a graduate student is (sometimes) the best. With wind chill in the -40s in Michigan today (although strangely it will be 48 degrees on Sunday), I am very much loving that I am inside.

Watching: Like everyone else this past week, I watched the Fyre documentaries on Netflix and Hulu. You know you are a total nerd when, you go to Krogers and make lame jokes with your husband about “late stage capitalism” the entire time you picking out what you are about to binge on (peanut butter m and m’s and yogurt covered pretzels for me, Twizzlers for Bruno), probably scaring the other consumers. Ok, back to the documentaries. I recommend and I’ll admit not for the most virtuous of reasons. I definitely have a sort of #richpeopleproblems attitude to the whole debacle. There was one “influencer” who was not even shown for longer than two minutes (in both documentaries) who made me rage (“low, low economy”). I will say though it made me question whether I was part of the problem due to my (probably excessive) use of Instagram, so I pre-ordered Cal Newport’s Digital Minimalism to try to temper my social media-addict ways. Sidenote: the Fyre Festival memes on ultrarunningmemes are gold.

Listening: I am really liking Weezer’s Teal Album. I did not initially love their cover of Toto’s Africa, but it grew on me and I was pleasantly surprised with all the other covers on the album. A few favorites: Everybody Wants to Rule the World, Sweet Dreams are Made of These, and Paranoid. Weezer covering Black Sabbath may be one of the most fun songs I’ve heard in awhile. I went through a Weezer phase in high school (this is a thing, right?) and listened to plenty of the Blue Album and Pinkerton (just like this SNL sketch), but then never really listened to them again. So, it has been fun to listen to those albums again.

Reading: Confession? Not much. I’m reading True Devotion to Mary as a part of this reading challenge, but most of my reading has been Jean-Jacques Rousseau and dissertation-related as I begin to prepare for my defense next month. So yeah, strangely nothing too exciting here unless you are into the sources of inequality and the great swindle that led to political society.

Eating: I have been having bad cravings again. I made these blondies yesterday to satiate my sugar tooth and they were amazing. But mostly, it has been nothing too exciting — lots of soups made from my favorite cookbook. I switched up my flour from white to whole wheat for my sour dough bread and it was just ok — why does the bad stuff always taste better? I did start making my own yogurt and I will admit, it tastes much better than what you can get in the store.

I hope you all are staying warm! What are you loving lately?

 

 

 

Monday Miles : January 21 – 27, 2019

crossfit, lifting, monday miles, running, swimming, training

I did not run a single step last week. After noticing my ankle was not getting better and instead turning all black and blue, I decided to just keep off of it. My ankle could not have picked a better time to malfunction, because the weather has been terrible. This week is only going to get worse with several days remaining in the negatives.

Though my ankle is starting to look better and is no longer bruised and the swelling is starting to go down, I probably will not be running this week either. I do not want to risk it. I know my joints and ligaments are all loosey-goosey (is that right?) at the moment and the last thing I want to do is create lasting damage that I have to deal with post-pregnancy too.

So this week was all CrossFit. It was probably for the best I did not run, because it was a rough week.

1 – 21 : JasYoga Back Relief.

1 – 22 : CrossFit. 3 rounds for time – 9 power snatches @ 35 lbs., 15 push-jerks @ 35 lbs., 21 air squats + wall push-ups. 9 minutes 43 seconds. I’m still not quite sure what the difference between a push-jerk and a push-press are. They look the same to me. And I know I did the power snatches, but I already forget what they are. Movement vocabulary is hard. After we did max reps for pull-ups. Guess how many I did? Maybe after pregnancy….

1 – 23 : CrossFit. Hang power-clean every thirty seconds for ten minutes (20 reps). 45 lbs., 50 lbs., 55 lbs, 55 lbs., 55 lbs., 55 lbs., 60 lbs., 60 lbs., 65 lbs., 65 lbs., 70 lbs., 70 lbs, 70 lbs., 70 lbs., 70 lbs., 70 lbs., 70 lbs., 70 lbs., 70 lbs., 70 lbs. I have never gone above 55 lbs, for a hang power-clean, so basically after five reps it was all PRs from there. Also, because I cannot do math, I thought we were done after my first 70 lbs. Ha! 4 x for time – 15 high knee-raises on a bar, 50 foot dumb-bell walking lunge @ 10 lbs. 8 minutes 14 seconds. My hands were tired.

1 – 24 : CrossFit. Four rounds – 00:00-2:00, 400m row; 2:00-4:00, rest; 4:00-6:00 Air squat + wall push-up; 6:00-8:00, Rest. Managed to get all rows in with seconds to spare and about 210 air squat and wall push-ups.

1 – 25 : CrossFit. This is the workout I had been waiting for all week. You see, back in December we did a thruster work-out that hurt so bad. That was when I met Jackie. When I doing my thrusters, people were already done with their pull-ups. I did not want to run away and hide the next time they were on schedule and they were this day with a vengeance. I’m happy to say it went much better. For time – 50 thrusters @ 35 lbs., 40 jumping pull-ups, 30 thrusters @ 35 lbs., 20 jumping pull-ups, 10 thrusters @ 45 lbs. 13 minutes 11 seconds. I suspect not underestimating thrusters is what made them better this time. I have a healthy fear now and it made all the difference.

1 – 26 : I had every intention of going to the pool to swim today. I went to the pool and it was packed. The end. Bruno and I bought a bunch of candy (I promise this never happens) and watched the Fyre documentaries.

1 – 27 : Rest.

Totals: 0 Runs, 0 Swims, 4 hours CrossFit, no double-under practice. 4 hours total.

Onward!

Favorite Things: January 19 – 25, 2019

favorite things

It has been kind of quiet here this week, but I’ve been using most of my time to finish up the dissertation. I probably could have been finished days ago, but I just keep looking at it, wondering if it is fine to turn it yet. Today, I’m answering with a big yes, going through format one last time, then godspeed dissertation. Make me proud. Or at the very least, do not shame me.

So without further ado, here are this week’s favorite things:

For a chuckle: Make America Smoke Again.

I am in full nesting mode and I can tell by what I google: Cleaning tips. 24 Effective Cleaning Products.

The grocery store does stress me out.

As a Catholic and a runner, I can appreciate some running nuns.

I liked this article on trail runner Emelie Forsberg.

 

Another great irunfar article from Sabrina Little on being story-telling animals.

 

Tomorrow is sourdough Saturday. Here is a beautiful article on making bread.

 

There is always a simpler way.

Something I need to work on: turning off the noise.

Why is this so fascinating? Influencer economy gone wrong.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Twenty-Two Weeks Update

crossfit, daily life, pregnancy, running

As I mentioned yesterday, we went in for our twenty week ultrasound. Our sonographer said everything looked good, but we’ll learn more next week during our regular appointment. While the best part was being told everything looked good (relief), the second best was being told that baby was measuring bigger than they expected. Instead of being due early June, I’m due late May. While I am not sure it makes a difference, it is kind of nice to know things are moving along. It all still feels so far away, but as I told Bruno when we got home, technically if the new due date is right, we only have three full months (February, March, April) sans-baby left. Not only that, but I’ll be walking for my doctoral graduation exactly two weeks before I am due. That might be a long ceremony.

50943337_331896447427239_4665557234875367424_n

But how is it going? I mentioned last week I was dealing with pelvic pain and yesterday that I think I did something to my ankle — probably due to the change in ligaments (I’m falling apart). But aside from that, what is going on?

I keep waking up at 3 in the morning. At least two to three times a week, I am up at three. I have determined it is better to just roll with it instead of fighting it in bed. So, I wake up, do my morning thing. I’m lucky to have a flexible schedule, so I can take a nap later if need be, but I actually try really hard not to so I can still get to bed at nine if I can.

Nightmares. The waking up at 3 is not so bad. It just means more quiet time in the morning and I’m more tired. What is not so fun are the nightmares. Sometimes I do not even know what I dreamt about, but just that it was not good. I get that it is hormones, but I look forward to these stopping whenever they do.

Iron-hard immune system. When Bruno was sick with the flu the other week, I was nervous I would end up getting it too. After all, we live and sleep in close proximity. I figured it was only a matter of time. I braced myself, but never got it. I’ve always had a freakishly good immune system (I get sick — but from migraines and apparently beets and spinach), but this might be one of the more impressive times the system has shown me it won’t let me down.

The nesting has begun. Though Marie Kondo is a little too woo-woo for me (though I might read her book to learn how to fold socks ha!), for the first time in awhile our house is clean. Not immaculate, but clutter is starting to disappear, a rhythm for the days I clean certain things has begun to emerge (today is laundry day), and yes, I’m throwing things out. Of course, I am. It has shown up in other ways too. Though one of our goals was to not eat out in January (unless it is for social event — which has so far only happened twice), I think the urge to cook is probably related to the nesting urge. I like cooking, but making my own yogurt? Definitely a little different.

Running has diminished/strength has improved. One of the interesting things about being pregnant is how differently it affects my running and how differently is has affected my weight-lifting at CrossFit. I had about ten good weeks of running and then boom, slower, painful, and more walking. However, anytime I have lifted weights, I have either been consistent or improved. I have PR’ed both my back-squat and my shoulder press during my second trimester, not to mention a few other movements (although this is a change from maybe the barbell to putting weights on…still a big deal for me). It probably helps that strength-wise I am starting from nothing, so I do not know if it would be the same if I had been doing crossfit for years. But — it does feel good and I cannot help but be impressed with my body. Like holy cow, I am making a baby and pushing seventy pounds over my head. Crazy.

Overall, I’d say things are going well. Like I have mentioned, patience has been key. I want to type-A and do all the things, but physically, especially with running, I have to take a step back. I have to be patient on the days I wake up at three and be ok with the fact that probably after lunch, not a thing will get done because I will be so tired. I can confirm that at least for myself everything I read about the second trimester being better than the first is absolutely true.

 

Monday Miles : January 14 – 20, 2019 (20-21? Weeks Pregnant)

crossfit, goals, lifting, monday miles, running, swimming

So fun fact. We had our twenty week ultrasound today. I thought last week was twenty weeks, but apparently I’m measuring further along than we all thought and my due date is now late May instead of early June (does it really make that much of a difference?). Anyway, it is nice to know that I’m closer than I thought instead of further. I already feel like I have been pregnant forever.

Anyway — to work outs. Last week was a good week! But I’m back to having a lot of pelvic pain. Then, while doing double-under practice (of course, one of my goals for January), I landed on my left ankle wrong. I thought it would be fine and even continued to run/walk on it. But yesterday and today, it has been really grouchy. That last week went so well means I have the confidence to take it easy this week.

1 – 14 : Swim. 100m free-style warm-up. 10 minutes – 25m swim, 30 seconds rest. Repeat. 100m free-style warm-up. 450m. 2:10/100m. Strava puts me at 492 yards. 1:58/100 yard. Double-under practice. Run/walk. 5 minute walk, 20 minute run, 2 minute walk on treadmill. 2.48 miles. 10:58/mile.

1 – 15 : Run/walk. This is the one from last week where I felt pretty discouraged. I could not even move for ten minutes without having to hop off to use the restroom. 4.49 miles. 12:23/mile. Around 55 minutes.

1 – 16 : Run/walk. 1 mile walk, 1.5 mile run, a little under mile walk. 3.24 miles. 14:24/mile. Around 47 minutes. This went better. I wore the new pregnancy belt which may be why. I feel so weird wearing it inside on the treadmill. It is a self-consciousness problem I think. CrossFit. 5x 45 seconds double-under practice, 300m rowing. 12 minutes 58 seconds. Ok, so the double-unders went so much better. I actually managed 25, which is 25 more than I used to be able to do. It is a start. BUT in the fourth round I landed on my left ankle all wrong. I finished the work-out. I even continued to work out on it for the rest of the week, but given that it is still bothering me today I’m taking it out of commission. I don’t think I broke it considering I can walk and even run on it, but I certainly did something to it. There’s always something.

1 – 17 : Walk outside. 45 minutes. 2.56 miles. 17:35/mile. I like to think that when I do finally do an ultramarathon that I will credit all this walking for helping me get there. Hah! CrossFit. 5 x 3 shoulder press @ 55 lbs. AMRAP – 12 minutes. 1 pull-up (green-band assisted), 2 push-ups, 3 squats; 2 pull-ups (“”), 4 push-ups, 6 squats; 3 pull-ups (“”), 6 push-ups, 9 squats; 4 pull-ups (“”), 8 push-ups, 12 squats; 5 pull-ups (“”), 10 push-ups, 15 squats; 6 pull-ups (“”), 6 push-ups, 6 knee push-ups, 18 squats; 7 pull-ups (“”), 7 push-ups, 7 knee push-ups, 21 squats; 7 pull-ups (“”), 16 knee push-ups, 24 squats; 9 pull-ups (“”). I liked this one. Plus, I was happy I didn’t have to switch to knee push-ups until 12 push-ups and not even all knee push-ups until I had to do 16. Small victory!

1 – 18 : Run/walk. 4.32 miles. 15:48/mile. Around an hour on the treadmill.

1 – 19 : Run/walk on the treadmill. I walked only one mile and then decided I would run for as long as felt ok. I made it to 5.44 miles. 12:26/mile. 1 hour. I was really happy with this! JasYoga Prenatal Fluidity video.

1 – 20 : Rest. Rest. Rest.

Totals : Run. 22.8 miles. 5 hours 10 minutes. Swim. 450m. Around 15 minutes. CrossFit. 2 hours. Double-under practice. Twice. 7 hours 25 minutes.

Onward!