working out and the mental game. plus, a killer climbing spin workout.

This week has been all over the place.  I feel like everything is slowly falling into place while simultaneously falling apart and it is a very unsettling feeling.  It’s been a time full of successes in terms of recovery for my injury and full of just straight up sadness.  We’ll start with a flashback over the past couple of days.

On Saturday, my boyfriend’s parents came into town to spend some time with us and it was a lot of fun.  We ate and ate and ate some more and then got a little bowling action in which was wicked fun.  While we were out and about, my pup, Boo, who I so very often feature on this lovely blog got into some prescription medication, which was no bueno. Long story short, we ended up taking her to the 24 hour animal hospital because she was acting very strange and had thrown up.  It turns out that the medication had a whole ton of Vitamin D and Calcium in it, which was causing issues with her kidneys.  They let us know that this could go one of two ways a) she could get better with treatment over the next couple of days and that would be that b) or she could get worse.  I had to sign some forms I really did not want to sign before we left her overnight to be monitored.  I visited her again today and she’s doing much better and the doctor said she’s on the up and up so yay!  But things can still change.  The doctor did say she was cautiously optimistic, so here’s to hoping.

All this to say, my workout yesterday was a little…scattered.

Working out is my stress reliever.  It is my calming agent.  It is my way of letting it all out.  So, when I’m met with situations like this, I turn to the gym.  I woke up this morning in a bit of a daze.  I got up, got out of bed, threw on my workout clothes, and drove mindlessly to the gym.  I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do, but running felt like the best option.  Yes, I am coming off of injury and I ran 6 miles on Saturday, but running is the best way for me to get my feelings out through motion.  I plugged in my headphones and turned on anything that would take my mind away from Boo and get me moving.  I ended up running 2 and a half miles and then stopped.  I just stood there and decided that I wasn’t just going to throw away this day.  I was going to test myself.  My ankle felt good, my lungs felt good, and I wanted to play with speed.

So, I ran.  I ran and I ran and I ran.  I finished the mile in 6:47, which is something I haven’t done since the very beginning of my half marathon training.  I didn’t really focus on speed like I used to and now I’m excited to get back at it.  Being able to push myself like that made me realize how mental of a game working out is.  I had no time to think about anything else that was plaguing my brain when I was narrowing in on keeping my breathing steady, watching my foot turnover, and just focusing on moving.  Paying attention to my body and what it can do took over and didn’t leave any room for worry.  It was cathartic and just what I needed.

After I left, I felt level headed and much more present than I had in the morning.  The day was still hard with out my little buddy around, don’t get me wrong, but I was in a much better space than when I had woken up.  It offered me the same sensation I get when I get stressed at work and go and take a walk.  I can unplug my mind and just go.

I get the same unplugged feeling when I’m teaching spin.  I’m so focused on paying attention to the students and giving a good class that I just black out and black back in at the end.  I am a naturally high-strung person, so any opportunity I get to just dial it down, I’ll take it and then some.

This week, I’m focusing on working climbs with my spin group.  I like to start each class with a mindset for everyone to think through over 45 minutes.  This class is “I Didn’t Come This Far Only To Come This Far”.   That quote has gotten me thorough a lot these past couple of days.  I didn’t wake up at the crack of dawn and get to the gym at 5:30 am just to phone it in.  No, no I did not.  That’s why I pushed myself for that speedy mile.  That’s why I didn’t skip today.  That’s why I show up and I put in effort every time.

spin class climb

 

-sj

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