Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Good, The Bad, and The Ambivalent

Good things:

  • I'm currently getting A's in all six classes. I was actually pretty worried about this, it's been a long time since I've done this whole student thing and was afraid my brain was out of shape or something.
  • Both my dance teachers are kicking my butt and expecting a more professional performance level based on my previous employment. I tried explaining to them I was only ever a yellow-red but they either don't get it or don't care. However, I can tell my technique is improving because of their encouragement.
  • My waistline is shrinking and my flexibility is increasing, finally! My big goal this semester is to be able to bend over and (comfortably) put my palms to the floor without bending my knees. My huge goal is to do a split... that will probably have to wait though.
Bad things:
  • The sun is sleeping in later and later. I really don't like running in the dark, I don't have any reflective gear plus feel it's kind of unsafe.
  • I let myself skip my last two runs. I missed a 2 miler on Saturday and a 30 min run on Monday. Do I make up for these on rest days or just let them slide?
  • Something is not right inside me. I am completely exhausted lately! I'm sleeping the same amount of hours and not experiencing any other symptoms, no sore throat, congestion, nausea, depression... I cannot explain it. My mind is alert and functioning but my body is soooo tired, all the time. Walking to the kitchen to fill a glass of water makes me want to take a nap. I'm asleep on my feet after dance class. I've literally been sitting in the same chair in the corner of the library for 1.5 hours, dreading the time I have to get up and walk across campus for my next class. Is this what it's like to get old? What possibly fatal disease manifests as physical exhaustion? I'm afraid to ask WebMD, I'm sure they'll tell me it's cancer.
Ambivalent things:
  • I may end up having to add an extra semester here at the community college. I just found out that anatomy is a pre-requisite for physiology, so I may not be able to take them both in the spring as the college website suggested (I have a meeting with a counselor in a few weeks and I'm going to ask for a waiver to take them concurrently). I can't decide whether this is good or bad. I had fully intended to be able to transfer to a UC or CSU next fall. I'm anxious to finish my degree and get working. However, if I add an extra semester, I am adding space for some just-for-fun classes and one of my all time favorite professors is rumored to be un-retiring next year and I would LOVE to sing with him again.

Send encouraging vibes my way tomorrow morning, I really have to get out of bed and get my butt out the door, it will have been a week since my last run. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Importance of Being Complimentary

I think all women, maybe men too, are really unhappy with a particular part of their body or appearance. For me, it has always been my skin. I got screwed when puberty hit and now that I'm out of my 20's you might think the breakouts would stop but no. I finally feel like it's under control but nowhere near what I'd like. One of the worst things about acne-prone skin is figuring out how to conceal it without using so much makeup that you're adding to the problem. I tend to be very anti-makeup, I suck at using concealer and foundation and mostly stick to a light dusting of powder. This of course offers very little coverage, but I always figured if people were going to make fun of me, I'd rather it be for my bad skin than my inability to use makeup correctly!

Today at work, everything that could go wrong did. I was so frustrated, at one point I almost sat down in the shoe stock room for a cry. Then I pictured myself sobbing amidst boxes of boots that cost more than my entire wardrobe and decided to get the heck out of there! I headed to one of our women's departments and while I was searching for a few dresses, I got to chatting with one of the personal stylists. As I was leaving she said, "You have the most beautiful skin, I've wanted to tell you a few times but I know that's an odd thing to say." I hardly knew how to respond. I don't know this lady well but she seems to be very kind and very genuine, I was pretty sure she wasn't teasing me. I know she wasn't trying to sell me anything, and she definitely wasn't coming on to me. I was completely flustered and shocked. Didn't she see the same girl that lives in my mirrors? Was my view of myself, all these years, really that off?

For the rest of my shift, nothing that went wrong seemed to matter at all, it was just one bad shift and tomorrow will be better. Being complimented on that one trait of which I am so self-conscious turned my entire day around. I won't lie, being over 30, moving back to my parents house, going back to junior college and even starting over in a brand new line of work while pretty much all my friends are getting married and pregnant has taken a real toll on my self confidence. My lovely coworker had no idea how much I needed that ego boost, making her kind words that much more impactful.

You never know how much your words will mean to a person. I think we all need to make an effort to be more complimentary, more appreciative and more friendly to one another. I challenge each of you to  say more nice things to those around you. Whether you see it or not, you will be having a positive effect on the world and you may turn around someone's rotten day.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Awwwwww Freak Out!

I'm minorly freaking out, friends. I have my first Biology "midterm" tomorrow (I use the term midterm loosely as clearly, it is not the middle of the term and my instructor is playing fast and loose with words here) and I have no idea if I'm ready or not. I've been studying in pretty much every free moment and it's gotten to the point that I can almost recite my notes from memory. However, I don't know this guy, I have no clue what his test will be like, I only know he has a reputation for being thorough... wish me luck!

In running news, nothing exciting has happened. I've been doing 30 minutes twice a week and last Saturday was only a 3 miler. My hips still hurt but not as much. I think running too close to the gutter was actually the culprit, the street tilts there obviously and so I was not running on a level surface. Once I realized that, I started moving out a little farther from the curb and it seems to be helping a lot.

So tomorrow afternoon, send good vibes my way, cross your fingers for me, and hopefully I'll get through this test without losing my mind!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Half Marathons and Hip Pain

Today I began the Jeff Galloway Half Marathon program. A 30 minute run, nothing special or exciting. I also walked about 2.7 mi with my mom after my run. I'm excited about the long weekend runs ahead of me, looking forward to exploring new routes and really pushing myself.

Before I can run too many miles though, I need to figure out what is wrong with my hips. After Saturday's run and again today I have had some fairly major pain in both hips, focused mostly on the posterior of the joint - sort of the upper, outer corner of each butt cheek. I doesn't hurt while I'm running but for mot of the day after, especially when standing after sitting for a long time and when climbing stairs. I've done some internet research and can't find anything that really fits my symptoms. Any ideas what might be going on? Have you had similar pain, know an stretches or exercises I should be doing? Being poor and without health insurance, I hope to troubleshoot this myself, let's keep our fingers crossed that it's nothing major!

I hope you're having a wonderful Labor Day, I am certainly enjoying my extra day off!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Busy As A...

I haven't been great about running these past two weeks. I think I only got in two runs last week and two this week - in my defense I have also had 4 hours of dance classes each week and LOTS of walking around campus. The real problem is, I finished the C25K program and haven't yet started my half marathon training plan so I've been left on my own with no schedule to follow. Is that a lazy excuse? Perhaps. I'm just a person who needs a plan to follow and left to my own devices, apparently I flounder, oh well. Good news is my half training plan kicks in this week. I'm going to be following Jeff Galloway's plan, two 30 minute runs during the week and long runs on the weekend. So ideally my weeks will look like this:

Mon: 30 min. run
Tues: 2 hrs dance classes
Wed: 30 min. run
Thurs: 2 hrs dance classes
Fri: rest day
Sat: long run
Sun: rest day

I'm really hoping that my work and homework schedules let me stick to this plan, keep your fingers crossed for me! I had forgotten how exhausting school can be, maybe I was too ambitious with 6 classes and a part-time job? How do you keep calm and stress-free when your schedule gets overwhelming?