Lucky

I’ve have a tattoo on my ankle; it’s “lucky” in Chinese kanji. Yes, I made sure it was actually “lucky” in Chinese – I didn’t want to end up having one that said “Rice Fried by Pork Fat” or something else horrifying.

I’d take a picture of it, but that would require me shaving my legs and I don’t have time for that.

aint-nobody-got-time-for-that

I chose the word “lucky” because that was the nickname I’ve acquired over the years. My mom first started calling me that when I was young when I would climb trees like a crazy reckless monkey and would ride around on our three-wheeler (you know, four wheelers back when they were dangerous and awesome) on two wheels and giving her heart attacks and gray hairs. She would always tell me “you’re lucky you don’t break your neck!”

When I was eleven, I was in a terrible tractor accident that should have left me dead. Instead I walked away from it with just a broken arm.

At the age of 15, driving with my farmers permit, my inexperience with driving on gravel roads ended up with me wrapping my car around a tree. I ended up with a cut on my shoulder.

When I was 16, I totaled my car by colliding with a deer. It was a 1979 vehicle – there wasn’t ABS or airbags or any other safety feature than a seatbelt. Not a scratch.

(Yes, I also had the nickname “Crash” in high school too, but I luckily grew out of that one.)

Playing in a softball tournament when I was 26, I took a line drive to the face. I was lucky there because right before that play, I took off my sunglasses and had the ball hit the sunglasses, I would have had shards of them in my eyes and would have done tons of damage. I was also lucky that it hit me where it did, just a centimeter lower and it most likely would have collapsed my eye socket.

Lucky.

Things that don’t seem to be working out end up working to my benefit in the end. Jobs, opportunities, the list goes on.

lucky

A few weeks ago at Crossfit, I had done a max PR for my front squat of 120#. I had some shitty form on that, so I thought “well, if I do it with good form, I can add another 5# onto the bar. It’ll be great!”

As the custom at our box, our coach films our max efforts so we can review/improve our performance.

With this squat, I got down to the bottom and I wasn’t going back up. I had to dump the bar.

Disclaimer: I apparently had missed the training where they taught us how to properly dump a bar. But I had watched my teammates do it often, so I thought I had a good grasp on the concept.

WRONG.

Back to dumping the bar. I did what I thought I had to do, but something twinged in my left wrist when the bar dropped. I thought “well fuck that didn’t go well” and said I was done for the day. I went home and iced it and took ibuprofen for the swelling like I did for any other minor injury I’ve had in my adult life. Go to bed and I’ll be right as rain in the morning.

WRONG.

I didn’t sleep much that night as the pain kept waking me up and by the time daylight rolled around, I made my husband take me to Urgent Care to get it checked out. I mean, I make my living on a computer – it’s kinda hard when you can’t use one of your hands. 😦

The verdict: bad sprain.

They took x-rays to make sure nothing was broken, and they came back completely clear. I had to wear a brace for a week (that made typing really difficult) and then take it easy on the weightlifting until it’s healed.

For the most part, it’s good. I can type with no pain and I can lift things again as long as I have a straight wrist. With a bent wrist (like for barbell presses or pushups), I still can’t put much weight on it. But it’s improving each day, so it’s just going to take time.

A little more than a week after the injury, I went to my box to do a WOD that was all lower body work and didn’t have anything that would aggravate my sprain (I wore my brace just to be safe) and my coach said he reviewed my video to see where I went wrong. Apparently when I poorly tried to dump the bar, all 125# of the bar and my momentum of my arms made my elbows smash into my knees. For those of you keeping track: that is the completely WRONG way to dump a bar. In fact, it’s the “don’t ever do this” thing they tell you about. Then, my coach said:

“You’re damn lucky you didn’t shatter your wrist or break both your arms!”

Lucky? No shit.

I have a month of physical therapy coming up – going to finally deal with my shoulder problems and get this wrist back into shape so I can start lifting those heavy bars again. I miss it!

I’m just lucky I only have to work for a month or so to get back to normal.

The CrossFit Jeans Curse

I’ve been doing CrossFit for a while now and while I’m getting stronger, my jeans are getting tighter – specifically in my thighs and rear end.

Jeans that used to be a little loose – well, until I ate my feelings and got too fat to fit into them – are starting to fit tighter again. Those jeans that I zipped up in triumph a mere month after starting CrossFit are now getting uncomfortable to wear because they feel like they’re sliding off my ass.

NOT THE LOOK I’M GOING FOR.

Pretty sure it's due to the wide variety of squats we do EVERY DAY either before the WOD or during the WOD that is the problem.

Pretty sure it’s due to the squats we do EVERY DAY either before the WOD or during the WOD that is the problem.

Out of the two pairs of jeans I have – the boot-cut “triumph” pair of jeans from Eddie Bauer and a pair of skinny jeans from the Gap – ironically the skinny jeans are the only ones that still fit comfortably. But, that’s because they’re a spandex/denim mix so they stretch a bit over all the developing muscle. The downside to the “skinny jeans” is that I have to wear a belt to keep them from also sliding down my ass. A belt doesn’t work with the Eddie Bauer jeans because there’s just not enough denim to contain the MUSCULAR BEAST that I’m turing into.

That means my two go-to companies to get new jeans are most likely out because the ones I had searched so hard for don’t fit me like they used to. What does an internet junkie like myself do? Of course! Search the internet!

From the list of Google search results I found, this is a VERY common problem for weightlifters and CrossFitters.

Tell me about it, bro.

Tell me about it, bro.

I found a brand of jeans called Cocabang that were specifically made for women who lift and they had a successful Kickstarter campaign to get them off the ground. At first, these jeans sold for close to $200 – most likely due to a production issue as they’re American made – but now they’re retailing for closer to $100.

Now you may scoff at paying $100 for jeans, but I normally would pay $75 for jeans at the Gap, so to pay a little more to get ones that fit might be worth it.

But, with all the traveling I’m going to be doing in March, I should probably get a pair of jeans to take with me sooner rather than later.

SIGH

I hate shopping. Maybe that’s why I only own two pairs of jeans and the newest pair is 4 years old. 😐

Happy Saturday!

Time, Time, Time…and Fitness

I started this post a week ago.

I also started another post nearly three weeks ago.

Did I finish either one of them? Nope.

Why not? Time. You know, like the song…

Time, time, time, see what’s become of me
While I looked around for my possibilities.

Yes, I know Paul Simon wrote the song, but my first experience with it was with The Bangles cover of the song….

the_bangles

Oh my gawd, I so wanted Michael Steele’s hair back then. Curse you for being too chicken to dye your hair red and for being too afraid to ask your parents for a crimping iron!!

Oops, I got a bit off track. Sorry. 😛

What happened to make me feel like I didn’t have enough time? Life. Stress. Feeling like there’s not enough time leftover every day to indulge myself in writing. Feeling like all you can do is put one foot in front of the other just to make it through another day.

It’s exhausting. It sucks.

However, there are things you can do to help mitigate those feelings of worthlessness and anxiety. For some, it’s meditation. Others, doing something with their hands like gardening or knitting makes them feel better and helps them relax.

For me, and I’m sure a lot of you (all three of you that read my nonsense), it’s exercise.

And the past month, it’s been a bit up and down on the fitness front. I’ll just recap with a bulleted list (and in no particular order):

  • Life stress.
  • Eating and drinking my feelings.
  • My mind not being focused resulted in me aggravating my problem shoulder at CrossFit.
  • The scale not going down and my clothes not fitting again (more on that below).

Regarding my “problem shoulder” – I played as an outfielder in softball from the third grade up through my late 20s and a lot of those years competitively. Throwing my shoulder out wasn’t uncommon, but as a 17 year old, I didn’t have lasting problems with it. Well, not until my 40s, it seems. But if I look back on things, my right shoulder has been weaker than the left for a while and was more prone to soreness/muscle knots when I would start weight training. Since I work exclusively at a computer for my daily job, it was really only a matter of time before I had issues. Now I’m seeing a massage therapist every two weeks and have invested in some lacrosse balls for at-home massage therapy for those times in between. I’ve also slowed down on what I do with my training at CrossFit with regards to any overhead presses/pulls.

Speaking of CrossFit, my box had been ramping up for the two coaches to compete at an invitational somewhere up in Washington and it had felt like (right around the time I aggravated my shoulder) everything was all “push it! do or die!” etc. Very much not the environment that I loved when I first started – not the place where they were all about modifying movements to fit your ability.

My husband had come home from CF one night (I tend to go to an earlier class so I can make dinner) and he was really frustrated because he wasn’t getting them to understand he needed some modifications. He has some major limitations on the mobility of his hand due to some extensive tendon reconstruction surgery over 20 years ago. Certain core CF moves he can’t do because of it. After being told there wasn’t a mod for the move they were doing, he just gave up and came home. He didn’t go back for a while either, which was disconcerting.

I think after the competition was over, after hearing grumblings from others that things were getting too intense, and after a number of people were getting injuries there was an 180 on the attitude of the coaches – which I was so happy to see. Now that my coaches have been more accommodating with our limitations, it’s been slow going getting my shoulder rehabilitated, but it’s getting there.

To the issue of the number on the scale not moving; I know. I shouldn’t take that into account. But it’s frustrating working my ass off and not seeing any results. Yes, I can still put those jeans on that was my first real indication that CrossFit was a good thing for me health and fitness wise, but that goddamn number on the scale is still 10 lbs heavier than when I started and the jeans are starting to get a little snug.

But!

Last week I went to the Saturday class and got to see one of the primary coaches I don’t normally get to see (she works the early mornings and I go after work) and she said to me “you have really have slimmed down since you started – you’re more straight up and down now!”

I was taken aback. I’m 10 lbs heavier! My pants are starting to fit tighter again! She said “well yeah, you’re getting a booty now!”

A booty? Me?

Well, that would explain why my pants are starting to fit differently again. I can do a 200# deadlift now and squats are no big thing. Do you know what that means?

Now kick dem nasty thoughts!

Now kick dem nasty thoughts!

In addition to getting a booty, I noticed when I was getting ready for CF yesterday that my armpit fat is starting to disappear! For those of you who are 1) not women and 2) deal with sports bras, armpit fat is the fat near your armpit that gets squished out when you wear a tight sports bra. Just search Google images for “sports bra armpit fat” and you’ll see what I mean. You might ask “why don’t you get a looser sports bra?” Gurl, if you try to run and not wear a compression sports bra, you’re in for a lot of pain.

Back to yesterday; less armpit fat! This is great! It clarified for me that I didn’t gain all this weight in a day, and I’m not going to lose it in a day. I just need to take each day at a time, and over time I’m going to see results.

Just takes time.