workout

I Am a Warrior!

“The basic difference between an ordinary man and a warrior is that a warrior takes everything as a challenge while an ordinary man takes everything either as a blessing or a curse”

-Carlos Casteneda

sThis past weekend I did the Warrior Dash with some friends from boot camp (including my best buds Kelly and Meghan- love them!!!!).  I didn’t train (or taper) ahead of time because I really just signed up for fun, not any kind of PR.  I was definitely looking forward to some quality times with my girls, and that fact that we would be beasting through mud and obstacles only made it that much better.

I was initially a little skeptical about how much I would enjoy a 5K now that I’m so used to running 10K or more.  I’m one of those people who tends to run close to the same pace no matter how many miles you put in front of me, and that pace is not particularly fast!  As such, I figured I was going to be slow as heck. That is not exactly what happened…

Instead, I channeled all the aggravation and hurt I’ve been feeling into propulsion.  In short, I  hauled ass… at least I felt like I was. lol  I definitely took off like a shot… only to get slowed considerably by some incredibly sticky mud that kept pulling off my shoes (and everyone else’s). I had a lot of fun with the obstacles because they were easy enough to do without the help of a team.  They even had a little climbing wall!

Because our start time was so late in the day, and it was a long (2 hr) drive, I had not eaten beforehand.  I was STARVING!!!!! However, given that I was not in a position to do anything about it, I kept pushing anyway.  I just wanted to get through as quickly as I could- bonking or not.  Whenever I felt tired, I reminded myself of what I felt like the last 5 K of every other race I’ve done, and how what I was feeling in that moment didn’t even compare.  I knew I could hustle through it, even if my body was rebelling.

In the end, I was surprised to find I had finished ahead of the other girls in the group.  I even came close to finishing ahead of Mike (our trainer)- mostly owing to the fact that he had walked part of it (YES MIKE! You knew it was coming!)  Overall I came in 352nd out of 6877 and 13th out of 1168 in my age group.  Considering I have always been a middle of the pack runner at best, I was both shocked and thrilled.  It made me want to go do one every weekend- especially when I knew I could have run faster!!! I even joked on my Facebook page that I might have even made the top ten in my age group if I hadn’t done 90 min of P90X yoga in the morning and actually ate beforehand. lol

The real rock star of the day, though, was Meghan- who completely destroyed her first obstacle race.  She also managed to look completely fabulous while doing it and got hit on so many times, we all lost track.  In fact, she even got a marriage proposal and hit on by a chick. GO MEGHAN AND YOUR HOT, BAD ASS SELF. I can’t blame them; the girl has it going on!

Once the race was over, we ended up tail gating in the parking lot with some people who were parked close by.  Meghan, of course, immediately started up conversation with them and within minutes was taking part in their photo sessions.  We shared our beer, they gave us doughnuts, it was all good. They were definitely a fun group, and we ended up staying until it was late and getting dark.  On their way out of the park, the youngest of their team asked “which one of you ladies is going to give me your number?” and we all laughed.  He clearly looked like he was right out of high school. It turned out he was only 19. After establishing that we would be more appropriate as babysitters than dates for him, they were again on their way, and we headed home.

It was definitely a great day and a great time!  I was so happy for Meghan and grateful to spend time with both her and Kelly.  Sometimes I think we need a babysitter (or chaperone) when we all get together. 😉  It’s definitely always an adventure!!!!

With great friends and family, really what else do you need in life? (other than exercise…. we all know I could never survive without exercise 😉 )

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From Humble Beginnings…

“Strength and growth come only through continuous effort and struggle.”
Napoleon Hill

And even then, sometimes life will surprise you beyond what you can imagine...

When I started this blog less than a year ago, my purpose was to provide hope and help for other victims of domestic abuse.  I started writing about what I had been through, the symptoms of PTSD I was still struggling with, and how I had started to regain my identity and sense of self through running.  At the time, I fully identified myself more as a survivor of abuse, than a thriver- despite my best efforts.  In spite of the fact that the abuse was in past, I couldn’t keep it from affecting my everyday life.

Then somewhere along the way I stopped being a survivor of abuse and became myselfa thriver with a passion for life and fitness.  I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but with the change in myself, this blog changed too (you may have noticed it’s been through a bit of an overhaul).  Instead of blogging my doubts about running and myself – or things I struggled with in life, I started blogging about fears I conquered and goals I achieved.  Over time,  this blog has became more about fitness and health than overcoming abuse.  Why? Because that’s why I’m passionate about!  Plus, once I overcame my past abuse, I didn’t feel like I needed to write about it anymore.  It’s not who I am; rather it’s just something incidental that happened to me in the past. Ultimately this blog became about aspiring to be the strongest and healthiest version of myself possible and hopefully inspiring some others in the process.

I went from struggling with a 10K and 15 K to finishing a half and full marathon and a Tough Mudderat altitude.  I grew from struggling with a single pushup to handstand pushups.  I became a boot camp and weight lifting junkie and found my happy self. Throughout all of it- I never expected much from this blog.  What happened instead exceeded more than I could ever have imagined: I became part of a community- a wonderful little network of amazing people who inspire me on a daily basis and blow me away with their kindness and encouragement.  This blog have grown so much in the past several months that I can hardly keep up with all the comments! (I still read every one!)  Even more amazing, are all the award nominations I’ve been receiving!

Just recently I have nominated for the Versatile blogger Award (Thank you Coach Crystal’s Padawan!!!), Kreativ blogger Award (Thank you Living Beautifully!!!), The Very Inspiring Blogger Award, and The Sunshine Award (Thank you PositiveBoomer!!!).

The rules for for these awards are all pretty much the same:

1) Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog (check)

2) List some random things about yourself that other people may find interesting

3) Nominate some worthy blogs and let them know

Since I have been nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award a few times already, I thought I’d share the list of awesome bloggers I’ve nominated in the past.

  • Tina Running For Freedom:  This blog is bran-spanking-new.  It belongs to a close personal friend of mine, and fellow CT-ALIVE board member.  She is a survivor of domestic abuse, thriver, and hosts a network TV show called Beyond Violenceto raise awareness about abuse.  She is currently running in an effort to lose weight and raise money for victims of abuse.  Today she is participating in her first 5 K!  I am SO PROUD of her!
  • The Healthy Push: I would recommend this blog (and Facebook feed) to anyone interested in working out.  They have great images, recipes, exercise tips, motivational quotes, etc.   Conveniently, there post today is tips on how to avoid over stuffing (bad pun intended) yourself on Thanksgiving.
  • Heikewrites:  Heike is a talented writer, an optimist, and also a survivor of childhood abuse.  She is very open about her own struggles and always has something interesting posted and I definitely recommend checking her out!
  • The Everyday Warrior:  Well, she is just that- an everyday warrior (better known as a super woman ;) ) She is a wife, mother, and runner who happens to be training for a half marathon and Tough Mudder.  She is also tirelessly working to raise money for the Wounded Warrior Project and could use our support !:)
  • Cerridwen’s Cauldron: “Wit, Wisdom, Humor, Nonsense, Rants and Raves, Brewed With a Pinch of Individuality Since 2009″- that pretty much sums it up!  I especially appreciate the wit. :)   She’s already been nominated, but I’d like to recommend visiting her blog anyway.
  • Remember the H:  A fellow marathoner with an awesome blog to get you motivated off the couch. (or maybe I’m the only one you wants to run a marathon after reading someone else did it- either way it’s worth the read!)
  • Thetortoiseruns: This blog seriously cracks me up- on a regular basis. Love it!
  • Soles of a Mom: “shoe addict, workout queen, wife & mom celebrates motherhood one shoes at a time!”- my kind of gal. Plus she’s a runner!
  • Conchsaladesque – Thank you for making me laugh and inspiring me!
  • Lean Girl’s Club– Great motivation for women who love to run or just want to stay fit
  • Fit and Feminist– Not only because we have so much in common, but because it’s something every girl should read
  • Tikk Tok– A fellow barefoot runner documenting her journey
  • Undeterrable– Love to read about another goal setter!
  • The Skinny Pink Ninja– Way to prove the doctors wrong girl! Can’t wait to follow in your footsteps (fingers crossed)
  • My Pink Ribbon Journey– Talk about survivor- this super woman just completed a triathlon after taking on breast cancer!
  • The Thinks I Can Think– Besides being generous, she is also incredibly funny!
  • Eat:Watch:Run– This blog cracks me up (and the bunny is adorable)!
  • Running on Empty– Love that this couple is training for a marathon together- and he documented his proposal in the blog!  Lots of luck to you both!!!!
  • Love and Running Shoes– Another CT local. Ashley, you rock! Good luck with your running and future triathlons :)
  • Motion and Rest– Love to read about another runner’s progress- especially when that runner is a fabulous woman with a sense of humor!
  • Breathless Runner– I totally relate to this blog!
  • Slow Happy Runner– Because Lori, you are an inspiration, and I love reading about your journey.
  • Fat Girl in a Skinny World– A great blog about living healthy :)
Also- just in case you missed it- here are the amazing folks I nominated recently for the Kreativ Blogger Award:
  • Soles of a Mom– I find this blog to be full of positive energy and always find something inspiring to read.
  • The Everyday Warrior– Why? Because she’s AWESOME!!!! and someone I can totally relate to.  She is also running a Tough Mudder and raising money for the Wounded Warrior Project, so head over there and show her some support!
  • Fabulous 50′s– Because she truly is FABULOUS and so is her blog.  I especially love her travel photos!!!!
  • Feminist Figure Girl- What can I say? I’m a feminist at heart.  This blog is totally worth reading.
  • Conchsaladesque- This lady has been through some recent heartache, but continues to face each day with strength and gratitude.  Her posts are always thoughtful and insightful.
  • Manbicep– All I can say is you have to read it.
  • Run. Dog. Cat. Me.- If for no other reason (and there are others) then because this post totally cracked me up.

In my opinion, ALL these bloggers of the Very Inspiring Blogger and Sunshine Awards. 🙂 However, in the interest of sharing the wealth I’d also like to add the following blogs to the list:

  • Coach Doug Bowers: love his blog and ever-encouraging comments on my page.  Be sure to check out his recent post on love handles and see what I mean. 😉
  • Mojo’s Movement: a fabulous fellow fitness junkie… like makes us practically soul mates right?
  • My Struggle- Losing 400 Pounds: 100 pounds down already! Sounds pretty inspiring to me, don’t you think?
  • Once and Future Runner: A fellow runner battling injuries with optimism and enthusiasm.
  • Coach Crystal’s Padawan: Fellow fitness enthusiast suffering through P90x while I sweat it out with Shaun T.

Hmmm and as for the random things…

I have developed an adulthood love of avocados and guacamole.

I love paisley and have it all over my house- not just on this blog. 😉

I can cook but stink at baking… not sure that’s a bad thing though!

I haven’t cut or colored my hair in over a year- changing that today!

If I could summarize this blog with one picture- and it's not just applicable to working out!

Boot Campers Gone Bad

“Hard work, given time, will defeat talent.”

Ever wonder what happens when a group of boot campers go rogue? Twelve scoops of ice cream topped over 2 chocolate lava cakes with m&m’s, gummy worms, and who-knows-what-else turns into a sad empty plate… THAT’S WHAT!

From this...

In our defense, it was a special occasion (Kelly’s Birthday/St. Patrick’s Day) AND it took 4 of us to eat it… Alright, one person may have carried the team a little, but she has a six pack and manly biceps so that makes it ok, right?

Despite any slight pings of guilt any of us may have felt, it was a great time! We even got to torture Adam’s best friend about the endless reasons why he needs to join boot camp.  Ultimately, he continues to refuse, so we just told him we would bring a boot camp flash mob to his house. 🙂  He’s so funny thinking won’t wouldn’t actually do it!

Aside from pigging out on St. Patrick’s Day weekend (including yummy S’mores Sunday night!) I have actually been eating very healthy recent (very healthy for me anyway).  The thing that sucks about eating food that is actually digestible- I feel like I have a tape worm again and need to eat every 2 hours or I get light headed.  This is especially fun when you work in a profession where you don’t even get a real lunch break.  The fact that I also have been working out like nobody’s business and getting my butt kicked by month 2 of Insanity probably isn’t helping.

To this...ok there was a banana left, but not much else

That extra 10-15 minutes of intervals has been killing me!- no lie.  (Of course that may be in part from me over-doing it on a regular basis.)  I know it may seem a bit intense to some people that I pull so many doubles and triples. However, the truth is on the days I work it is very difficult for me to get a good workout in; so although I may be getting in 2 or three workouts on my days off, it’s still only (haha “only” I know what you’re thinking!) 7 or 8 (alright, sometimes more) sessions for the week.  Plus, I don’t really count going for a casual run or afternoon at the climbing gym a “workout” – even if it actually is one. 😉 To me, it’s just fun.  Like going to a movie, but without all the junk food.

The highlight of my weekend was surprisingly not the junk food, but rather lifting with Adam and his best friend.  I really like hitting the weights with them, because 1) lifting heaving things makes me feel like a total badass, and 2) Adam’s friend makes it a point to push me really hard.  (Plus, he is like a super man with the weights!  I am always super impressed by the amount he is able to lift.)  I even made it a point to wear my bad ass boot camp gear so I could feel even more like a badass!  (and I thought Adam’s friend would appreciate the badass socks)

We ended up doing back, shoulders, and abs.  In true awesome form, Adam’s friend was doing rows with more than my body weight!!!! He was also trying to teach me how to do a dragon flag, but my back was shot after the rows and completely uncooperative.  Apparently, it is something near impossible to do on your first try, but I gave it my best effort! Something to add to the goal list for sure!  I did have one great accomplishment for the day, however. I completely SMOKED the boys at back extensions.  Initially, they told me to do them until I got tired, but when I was over 60 in, they decided it was too easy and gave me a weight.  When that still didn’t wear me out, they (picked their jaws off the floor, and then) handed me a 25 lb plate and I knocked out about 25 more.

Adam tried to say it was because I wasn’t bending far enough over, but his friend totally backed me up that I was doing them correctly (secretly, I think he was impressed but his manly pride wouldn’t let him admit it 😉 ).  I think it probably worked in my favor that I’m so short and compact, but I’m also totally sure it had to do with the fact THAT I WORK HARDER THAN BOTH OF THEM PUT TOGETHER- especially Adam who tends to rely on his natural athletic ability (who could fault him, really?).   I get that it probably sucks for him when his athletically challenged girlfriend kicks his butt at something physical, but the reality is HARD WORK BEATS TALENT WHEN TALENT DOESN’T WORK HARD!  I may be tiny, but I have a lot of heart and I’m willing to bust my ass– which is EXACTLY what I do.

In other news, I am STILL working on the pull ups (and chin ups).  I’ve made some progress at lifting with my back but still can’t get my arms to bend.  The important thing, though, is I am closer than I was yesterday!!! I have also been nominated for a few more blog awards- which I need to get on posting pronto!

I hope everyone is having an AWESOME day!!!

Why I Love (and sometimes hate) My Trainer

“Dedication and commitment are what transfer dreams into realities.”

-Unknown

I never thought I could afford to work with a trainer.  I always thought it’d be really expensive.  Then I joined boot camp and met the instructor Mike.  Initially, I had my doubts.  He seemed kind of angry and yelled a lot.  That was before I got to know him.  The truth is that Mike is one of the most dedicated and committed people I have ever met- and not just in terms of training (and, yes, he still yells a lot- but he’s also the first person to give you a high five fist bump and tell you when you’ve nailed it).  He takes his role as a boot camp instructor and personal trainer very personally.  He truly wants his clients to succeed, and is always willing to go that extra mile to make it happen.

Case in point, our boot camp class is supposed to be an hour long; however, it typically runs at least an extra 15 min if not longer. Why? Because Mike stays until everyone is finished.  At boot camp we don’t finish when we are tired, we finish when we’re done (whether it’s late or not!).  His group training sessions are no different.  The last one Adam and I did ran almost an hour over (that’s double the length) and Mike did the whole workout with us (after his workout on the stair climber with a weighted vest…he still kicked our butts- hate him! jk).  I have personally even seen him stay late to give someone that extra push to meet a goal when he stayed an extra hour after group one night to help a client conquer her fear of the tall box.

I am GOING TO OWN YOU EVIL PULL-UP BAR!!!

This past month, Mike made everyone at boot camp come up with a goal, which basically turned my 2012 goal of doing a pull-up into my February 2012 goal.  The problem: my lats refuse to cooperate on this one!  I bought a pull-up bar and hung it in the guest room door way (right by the bathroom, so I have to walk by it 50+ times a day) and have been doing negative pull-ups like it’s my job.  So far, the only thing I have to show for it so far is some really sore muscles and the feeling that my shoulders are going to fall off.  Meanwhile, everyone else has been annilating their goals.  As ecstatic as I am for them, it’s making me feel like a total loser.

I know it’s not right to compare and that the part that really matters is I’m putting in a lot of effort.  However, I’m someone who pushes myself to the limit on my own so having this deadline is only making me frustrated.  Most of the time, I really appreciate Mike pushing me hard, but in this case I am pretty much hating him for it (not all the time…just when I look at that damn pull-up bar).  While I am POSITIVE I will get to the point of doing a pull-up, I’m a little doubtful it’s going to happen in the next week- and THAT is going to make me feel like a total failure until I make it.  The worst part is I just had an awesome run yesterday and I have knocked out 3 wks of Insanity, but all I can think about is that stupid pull-up!  It’s going to be the bane of my existence until I get up there.

Of course, despite all my drama with the pull-ups I really do love training with Mike (and the rest of the boot camp crew!).  They have really become a second family to me and have helped me grow as a person.  When I first started boot camp and training with Mike I went into every workout anxious about whether I would make it through (despite being in shape enough to run over 15 miles).  Over time I got to the point of approaching the workouts with the attitude of “I can get through this”.  Now my attitude is always “BRING IT ON!”

Working out with Mike is always a challenge.  His boot camp classes have been tough enough to make Insanity seem easy in comparison.  Making it through his group sessions and boot camp have made me feel like I can truly conquer anything- including pull-ups!

I don’t know that I would have made to the point of being this tough (mentally and physically) if I had not signed up for that first month of boot camp.  Running a marathon was a challenge, and it without a doubt changed my life.  Yet, it doesn’t even begin to compare with what working out with Mike and my boot camp family has done for me.  Running is a solitary sport- it’s just you and the distance you need to conquer.  There’s no peers for support and no one to push you other than yourself.  It’s great for building discipline and character, but it can only take you so far.  Having the support of other people to push and motivate you is what makes the difference.  It’s what makes a workout that would otherwise seem insurmountable seem doable.  At the core of that workout support for me is Mike.

Today I started week 4 of Insanity…and did some more negative pull-ups.  I’m not sure what the rest of the day has in store for me, but it might just include a run to the gym. 🙂

What a Difference A Year Makes!

“Happiness is not a matter of good fortune or worldly possessions. It’s a mental attitude. It comes from appreciating what we have, instead of being miserable about what we don’t have.

It’s so simple, yet so hard for the human mind to comprehend.”

-Bits and Pieces 

Today I turn 29.  It’s officially the last year of my twenties.  While many people (especially women) dread turning another year older, I find myself approaching the big 3-0 with the opposite sentiment.  Why? Because life just keeps getting better, and I can’t to see what this next year has in store for me.

Originally, I had anticipated celebrating by going out today; but instead find myself just enjoying the morning at home.  I don’t need any flash or glam today.  I don’t need anything.  It is the most wonderful feeling of contentment- something I don’t think I ever knew how to be until recently (especially sitting still). lol  I guess some things get easier with age. 😉

My Birthday card from my brother and his girlfriend. They know me so well.

I think a large part of how amazing today feels comes from how low things were a year ago (and the year before).  I have had to rebuild my life from the ground up, and along the way I rebuilt myself.  I am stronger, fitter, more self aware and self assured, and all around healthier.  Life is good again.  In fact, it’s better than ever.  I’m better than ever.  A year ago (even 6 months ago), I was still keeping people at arms length.  Now, I can can finally let my guard down and allow people to see the real me.

Borrowed from my girl Kelly

I don’t worry about other people hurting me anymore because I am so much more confident and secure in who I am.  I know I can take the best of what they can dish out.  No person is strong enough to break me. I can handle life’s knocks.  If I get knocked down, you can be sure I’ll get right back up.  It’s going to take more than some harsh words or bumps in the road to break my stride at this point in my life. I have a solid foundation now.  I have a tight support system, and an army of people who LOVE and ACCEPT me FOR ME.

I opened my heart to the world again, and got it completely filled in return. I am SO BLESSED to have as many wonderful people in my life as I do- and I truly appreciate each and every one!  My phone has been ringing off the hook all morning with Facebook alerts and birthday well wishes.  It’s overwhelming at times just how much love and support I have in my life now.  I never thought I would have so many genuine friendships.  The thought of spending time with a lot of people used to exhaust me (or incite anxiety), however, now I’m often impressed at just how easy it is to maintain a great number of relationships when they are healthy and genuine.

All of the hurt, anxiety, and misery I endured makes everything about life so much sweeter now.  I wouldn’t wish what I went through on anyone, but I also wouldn’t change it.  It made me who I am today.  It brought me to where I am- and I like where I’m at.  29 is going to be a great year for me because I’m determined to live it up.  I am going into my thirties with a bang!

Happiness comes from developing a healthy relationship with yourself. Like any relationship, it takes work.  There will be ups and downs.  There will be times when you will be fed up; but at the end of the day it’ll be worth it.  I have made a commitment to be happy.  No one can do it for me.  I make a conscious effort at it everyday.  Today, that effort will include my next Insanity workout and spending time with the people who matter most to me. 🙂

Dig Deeper!

“If you always put limit on everything you do- physical or anything else- it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there. You must go beyond them.”

-Bruce Lee

Amen!

Oh yeah, I pulled out the Bruce Lee today.  Maybe I was inspired by my new self defense lessons.  Speaking of which, maybe I’ll start adding a self defense move of the week you tube video with my posts so everyone can learn how to kick ass with me…  

Today I worked my second 13 + hr shift this week and came home exhausted (saving lives is hard work 😉 )  I considered going straight to bed, but decided to “dig deeper” and do my scheduled Insanity workout instead.  On the agenda today: pure cardio and abs.  I did the abs first because I didn’t realize initially that they were separate workouts.   Anyway, the ab workout was only an additional 15ish minutes, so even combined with the full cardio workout, it was not as bad or long as boot camp.  Tomorrow is supposed to be a rest day, but since I’m a couple days behind I think I’m going to skip ahead to the fit test and possibly the next workout.

Plus, TOMORROW IS BOOT CAMP 🙂 YEA!!!!!!  Can you tell I’m REALLY looking forward to it?  Is it still sadistic to look forward to torture and pain when you know it’s good for you?  In reality, it’s not really boot camp I get excited about- it’s SURVIVING another boot camp and the associated post workout high (not to mention hanging out with my awesome “other family”!)  

So here’s to rising above plateaus, digging deeper, and being the person you are meant to be!

In the words of Caption Planet :The Power is Yours!"

So, for anyone interested… here is one of the useful moves Adam taught me called the “Rolling Knee Bar” (or “How to Break the Bad Guy’s Knee”).  Enjoy!

Why Boot camp and Decongestants Don’t Mix…

“If you are hurt, whether in mind or body, don’t nurse your bruises.

Get up and light-heartedly, courageously, good temperedly get ready for the next encounter

This is the only way to take life”

– Emily Post

Ok so this post is a little late.  Normally I don’t post twice in the same day, but this workout was entirely blog-post-worthy (and I found a bunch of great pics to use). lol

Wednesday night I went to boot camp (yes after my Insanity workout that morning-despite being sick).  I knew it would be a tough workout, but figured I could muddle through it.  I HAD NO IDEA WHAT I WAS IN FOR!  I keep telling Mike that the Insanity workouts are not as hard as boot camp.  Apparently he got the signals crossed and decided boot camp was too easy.  He KILLED US.

unless you pass out, then you're screwed...

Now, let me tell you why boot camp and decongestants don’t mix.  I have been taking pseudoephed (possibly pharmacy’s greatest gift to mankind) for the past few days in an attempt to relieve the intense pressure in my sinuses and help fight this God-forsaken bug.  What I didn’t realize prior to heading to our session, was that Mike had beyond insane (because let’s face it, Insanity isn’t that hard) interval training in mind.  The problem: the point of interval training is to adequately recover in between.  That means getting your heart rate down.  Side effects of pseudoephedrine: tachycardia, palpitations, dizziness, and blurry vision (ie. boot camp and decongestants don’t mix).

I can’t tell you exactly what exercises we did (because it’s sort of a dizzy, fuzzy blur!).  The warm up was pretty much the same as Insanity.  As for the rest, all I can say is there was a lot of jumping, punching, and push-ups involved.  There was also a lot of yelling to “PUSH HARDER!!!“.  I kept my eyes closed for most of it in a desperate effort to stop the room from spinning.  Every time Mike told me to move faster and “run it out” and wanted you yell “Are you serious?! This IS as fast as I can go right now! I’m happy to still be upright!”  It was honestly the closest I’ve come to passing out since the first session.  Someone actually threw up (I think a first while I’ve been there), and a few people had to stop at various points.  I think there would have probably been a lot of swearing and complaining if any of us had breath to spare.

I could feel my heart pounding in my chest, and it wasn’t in a good way.  When I did fleetingly open my eyes to glance around the room, it pretty much looked like a bunch of zombies.  Mike asked how I was liking the workout, and I told him I couldn’t wait to get back to my “easy Insanity workout”.  It was true.  His workout made Insanity look like kindergarten recess.  Every time I tried to move faster, I would get dizzy and have palpitations.  There were a couple points when I was really sorry I came (especially being sick), but by the time it was finally over I snapped out of it.  After all, I was happy to at least be suffering in good company. 🙂

 After that crazy workout, I took a day off from exercise and went to bed early last night instead.  I definitely needed that extra rest.  This morning I was back to my Insanity workout, and tonight I’m hoping to make a group session at the gym with Mike where I will be getting my sexy face on with some fabulous ladies- because there’s nothing sexier than a girl who knows her way around the weight room.

PS. Anyone looking for a little daily inspiration, here a a few of my new favorite Facebook sites.  They all have great inspirational photos and great tips on living a fit/healthy lifestyle.  If anyone has any other sites or blogs they recommend, I’d love to hear about them.

Kendrick Fitness

ShaBAM Fitness

Fit and Fiesty

The Optimism Revolution

Healthy Body Project

Oh and just in case anyone in my awesome family is still looking for a last minute birthday present (we’re getting down to the wire people) feel free to pick up any of the kick ass apparel on this site.

Have an amazing day everyone!!!!!