Sunday, December 25, 2016

Finding Joy in the Journey

Ho ho ho! The holidays are upon us but at Taking the Long Way Home, the workouts don't stop! In fact, no matter how crazy things get, I make sure to set aside time to get it done. I don't know about you, but I feel so much more calm and focused after a workout. With all the time spent planning and preparing for the holidays, it feels good to make a little time for myself. I know that I'm a better person if I get my "me" time. Besides, what better way to feel a little less guilty about overindulging in holiday treats than by burning those calories on the road or in the gym?




There were a few bitterly cold days to start off the week, but temperatures moderated nicely. To start the week, I set an intention of finding joy. I bundled up and headed out into the sunshine, pulling off jumps that Cory would be proud of! I'm telling you, this having fun on the run thing is a game changer! As the week went on, my runs started feeling easier and I was able to go farther. Am I starting to feel better or is it my new attitude about letting go? Whatever it is, I'll take it!



There was one difficult moment for me this week, and that was at my session with Becky. I entered the box in a great mood, having run an amazing 6 miler that morning. This was the first time I had seen Becky since my diagnosis. I asked her if she had read my blog post. She just kind of shrugged off my question. Her response was not at all what I expected. It was as if I told her I stubbed my toe.

I understood that she wanted me to roll with it, to not get caught up in the chronic illness mentality. Up until then, I felt like I was doing a pretty good job of working through this new diagnosis of RA. My coach, who always keeps me grounded and on track, clearly wanted to help me with this. I won't lie, though, I wanted to cry. Tough as nails? Not so much. It was like opening up a healing wound.

Fragile. Handle with care. Reality bites. Swallow hard. Don't cry. There's no crying at CrossFit.

If Becky had handed me slam balls that day, I may have thrown them at her.

She probably figured as much. Instead, I sucked it up. I held those wall sits until my legs were shaking and then some. My goblet squats were lower than low. Later that night, I reflected on our conversation and how much it bothered me. I sent Becky a text telling her how upset I was by her comments. Then I went to bed.

The next morning, there was a response from her. She apologized, saying that she didn't mean for her comments to upset me. That she doesn't want me to focus on my illness, instead reminding me of how strong I am, how I am so determined, and that I have never let anything get in the way of my goals. I was glad to hear that, but the whole incident took the wind out of my sails. For the rest of the week, I worked hard to find my joy again.

Fortunately, the theme for Friday's yoga class was joy. Isn't it funny how the universe sets everything right again? Megan started this class with a most fitting proverb:


On Saturday, I did a virtual 10k with the #holottafun ladies. There was a Christmas morning run too. I always like to run on Christmas to remind myself that running is a gift. Running gives us fitness but more than that, running brings joy. Joy in the run itself, but also in everything that goes along with it. The friendships, the races, the bling, the confidence, and the strength. Plus when else do you get to run in the cold and snow wearing a Santa hat?


Happy Holidays! Were you able to sneak in a few runs, a few yoga classes, or a few workouts? What brings you joy over the holidays?

I'm linking up with Tricia and Holly for their Weekly Wrap, and Angela and Ilka for the Sunday Fitness and Food Link up! And with Patty, Marcia, and Erica from Tuesdays on the Run!






70 comments :

  1. I get it, the trainer "tough love" approach doesn't really work for me either. I'm sorry you felt that way and am really impressed you still killed it. I might have walked out. Glad you got some great runs (and seriously, you take the best pictures) in over the holidays. I've gotten mine in as well - though 70 degrees in Nashville today had me unexpectedly running in HEAT! Holidays are tough for me, so I need to keep my runs going to keep my head and heart in the right place! Merry Christmas Wendy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Normally, I'm pretty good with her approach. I need a little tough love. I think I'm still feeling a little overwhelmed from all of this. In the long run, it will be good.

      Delete
  2. I get the tough love, but give me the explanation, then I'll get going. Sometimes I want to vent to make myself feel better. I hope you've had a great Christmas :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I've managed to keep my stress levels in check this Christmas with a few solid runs, and I am so thankful for that. I'm glad you were able to push through and nail those workouts. You're so tough!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I didn't feel very tough last week! LOL! Mental toughness is not my strong suit!

      Delete
  4. Ive also appreciated running this holiday season. I love that quote and it sounds like it fits in perfectly with what you have been going through!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's funny how life hands you exactly what you need, right?

      Delete
  5. I am so appreciating the miles right now. They are my little gift to myself. They are also helping me process whatever ISN'T working in my gut, so that is very much appreciated as well.
    Love, Peace, and Merry Christmas, Wendy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My biggest fear about this whole RA thing is that the treatments won't work. Every twinge and pain is a reminder.

      Delete
  6. I've had some similar sort of interactions with my trainer over the years. From my own experience, I would say Becky's view of you didn't change from before your diagnosis. She obviously still views you as the same strong, bad ass you were a few weeks ago. Sounds like good balance. Hang in there!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. She always hands me my reality check and that's not a bad thing!

      Delete
  7. The thing that stood out most to me is that you are setting an intention of finding joy. I'm so huge on setting intentions because they are so, so important! Love this!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Finding joy will be my intention for 2017. I cannot have another year like 2016!

      Delete
  8. Lately the miles have been keeping me sane, but there doesn't seem to be enough of them. That quote is wonderful and it seems to have been comic that the class was there for you.

    ReplyDelete
  9. You are so dedicated. Becky knows that. Glad you are able to run!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think she wants to make sure I don't stop!

      Delete
  10. Running is a gift, and I am so conscious of remembering that. Even when I"m (somewhat) sidelined due to injury....I'm thankful that it was the running itself that (may have) caused the injury. I'd rather be active and risk injury, than be on the sidelines watching everyone else. I'm not ready to risk one of those jumps.....not until my groin "thing" departs LOL

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will be anxiously awaiting your jumps! I hope your groin thing hits the road...

      Delete
  11. I was able to get out for my early morning run on Christmas morning. It is a tradition I love, and as you know, I've struggled since summer with knee problems and new arthritis diagnosis. and I've had a few other things pop up that just makes me feel like my body is falling apart. But your trainer's response made me think of a conversation I had with my husband just the other day. I told him I've over it! lol! I told him I'm just ignoring everything. I've given way too much thought, concern, fret to these aches and pains. Although real and definitely something that needs to be managed, I've still let them be front and center every time I want to move or do something. I told him I'm just letting go. I'm settling into a different routine, less days of running, more cross training, etc. It's the way it is, and I'm going to enjoy each workout and unless there is a major pain or something that indicates I need to stop, I'll just work through it. It's going to be okay! Here's to a better 2017!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Last week was a total dud running wise - not a single mile was run and I only rode my bike once. I told myself last night, "it doesn't matter how slow, just get out the door." So I did.

    Joy over the holidays has been being in our own home, with no current travel plans.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I bet it feels good to be settled for a while! Glad you to hear you got out and ran!

      Delete
  13. You know Becky sounds like an amazing person and really she is good for you. You don't need someone who will baby you and let you get caught up in all the negativity about RA, you need someone who expects more and challenges you deal with it head on.
    I wish I had gotten in a Christmas day run because you are right running is a gift. I love this!
    I met my friend for a run this morning because we were both off. I didn't have to do it at all but you know I never once thought about not going. It IS what I want to do. I do find JOY in the run!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you got out there--sometimes with all the craziness of the holidays, it feels good to do the thing we always do.

      Delete
  14. It is always so hard to not have an expectation when you tell someone something that is near and dear to your heart--whether it be good or bad. I tend to get disappointed but then I remember that most people's reaction to me & my news is less about me and more about them. Which, when you think about it offers some relief but at the same time it kind of bites. People are so self involved that they can't even step out of that long enough to put themselves in your shoes (like REALLY put themselves in your shoes) and think about how you feel. Sorry you had to go through that and I totally respect that you took the time to text her and tell her how you felt. Maybe she will have a little more empathy for the next person that comes along and shares with her. I think setting intentions about finding joy, peace, balance, etc. are so awesome and little reminders to ourselves to shift our focus to the good and not the bad!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I do believe she has empathy for me but doesn't want me to get sucked into a negative cycle. I guess I still feel pretty vulnerable about all this right now. 2017 is going to be all about joy and feeling strong!

      Delete
  15. Glad you got to tell Becky what you think rather than holding it in. Always better to talk about things than let them fester.

    I got in a lot of workouts this week, but I did work at home a lot so it was much easier. And my clients are all on vacation, so I am taking advantage of the slower work week. This week ? Vacation ! and fitness every day.

    Have a good week Wendy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you got to spend some time at home with your family. Enjoy your week!

      Delete
  16. I wish I could have got my 6 miles in on Saturday- it is not a #holottafun with all these bandages. I am focusing on the joy too! It was beautiful out today and the walk was fabulous! Keep smiling! Some people encourage and motivate us in ways that we don't always understand. Like my husband- LOL! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think you should just drink wine, until the wounds heal. For pain management, of course!

      Delete
  17. I'm sorry to hear about the RA diagnosis. A friend of mine has it and she finds regular yoga practice works for her. She has managed to continue to be a kick ass speedy triathlete despite having RA so I suspect that once you find out what works for you, you will continue to be able to do what you love! Hope you had a wonderful Christmas and here's to a 2017 filled with JOY. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Keep telling me those stories, because that's what I need to hear! Good thing I have a strong yoga practice. I think that's what has kept this thing at bay for a while.

      Delete
  18. So sorry Becky's response struck a bad chord with you. It's amazing how someone's comments can get under our skin -- even ones that didn't mean to upset us. It's great that you reached out to her -- I would have just stewed over it some more.I love the photo of your Christmas run - Ho, ho, ho in the snow :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love her too much not to talk about it. I'm just way too sensitive...and she's not at all, so I think that's why we are a good fit.

      Delete
  19. I can't really put my finger on it, but this post made me almost have tears in my eyes. I love how open and raw you are being about your feelings after being diagnosed with RA. Becky is right, you are such a strong woman and really thankful that she is in your corner. I love your jumping pictures as it said to me that even through this new season of your life you are still jumping for joy! I love your positivity it is very up lifting. The holidays can personally be a difficult time for me and working out does make me feel better tremendously. I'm alive and still able to do something I love so why not have joy and embrace it? Looking forward to reading your updates next week.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gosh, thank you so much for your thoughtful comments! Once I work through my feelings about being diagnosed with RA, I'm sure I'll be better than ever!

      Delete
  20. I'm in love with that proverb ...I may print that and put on my fridge as a daily reminder! I usually go for a run on Christmas Eve and skip Christmas day ...but I like your thought of running on Christmas day as a reminder that it is a gift ...thank you for that reminder! I think you are handling your RA diagnosis beautifully. You are strong and you will rise above this!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I showed it to her today after yoga class and she namasted me...it was the perfect quote to sum up how I'm feeling!

      Delete
  21. I have that same running shoe ornament!

    I'm so sorry Becky hurt your feelings. You are dealing with so much right now and while I'm sure she didn't mean it, I know how it must have deflated you.

    I wish I could have run on Christmas. Our little guy was up at 5:15 to see what Santa had left under the tree, and there is no way I could have snuck out once he got going (and we went to bed way too late to get up earlier LOL). When he gets older, maybe. I did run a bit last week, though, and that was good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad to hear you got some running in! The holidays are so fun when the kids are young but so exhausting! In contrast, I slept until 8 and I was the first one up!

      Delete
  22. I got some running in this week- finally. It's been far too long! I hope Becky didn't hurt you too much- but I can see how it might have felt coming from someone you trust. Well intentioned, but yeah, not cool.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's all in the delivery, right? I knew what she meant...and I'm glad we straightened it out.

      Delete
  23. I love that proverb you shared! I did a small run on Christmas eve but not on Christmas day. I hope to get out this week for a run although I received way too many fleece blankets and comfy clothes for Christmas and that makes me want to stay in, curl up and watch Lifetime movies..haha

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The couch is a tough competitor! Enjoy!

      Delete
  24. Lovely proverb. I'm glad you are able to continue to find joy in running. Sorry you had a rough bit with your coach, but I'm glad to hear you talked it out. Merry Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
  25. Running is definitely a gift! Sorry to hear about your convo with Coach Becky but glad you told her how you felt and got things straightened out! Hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I'm glad you were able to get in some runs and workouts! It is really a gift. I think it's totally understandable to feel a little blue after such a serious diagnosis. Just do the best you can, which it sounds like you are.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Sat was wintry mix, so we hunkered down at home. No time on Sunday, and it was just the perfect day to run. So instead I got to run as the temps dived after a some freezing rain yesterday (the roads were ok, thankfully, and I was very careful). I needed a run after 2 days of very little movement!

    I'm not always real good at clearing the air -- good for you for doing so, even if it was after the fact. Love your jumping shots!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad you got your run in! I'm not good at sitting still...

      Delete
  28. I've never heard that quote before but love it. Joy is key. I'm so sorry you had that experience- it's so easy to mean well and accidentally hurt someone without realizing it... but I admire you for reaching out and letting her know it was hurtful. Your leaping running photos are the best!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! That quote completely fit my week.

      Delete
  29. Aw, Wendy. I'm sorry you had a shitty day with your trainer. That sucks. I'm still in the "denial" stage of my illness -- heck, I haven't even gotten X-rays yet and my diagnosis came in October (and actually several years before that). I can only imagine how I'm going to react after I see if there's any damage.

    Anyways. Know you're not alone. xxoo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wish I could be in denial but that flare wasn't meant to be ignored!

      Delete
    2. Your support is much appreciated!

      Delete
  30. Running is the only think that kept me sane last week. Work was hideous, plus the holiday stress and last minute prep. And traffic. UGH. It's going to take time to come to terms with and manage your RA -- but I'm confident it will not slow you down. I'm glad you let Becky know how you felt that evening. Those things don't need to fester. The proverb is spot on! I'm looking forward to a joyous 2017 and hope to share some of that with you! Thanks for linking, Wendy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Running is always keeping me sane! And yes, we've got some fun planned for 2017. I cannot wait.

      Delete
  31. Tough love is often a difficult pill to swallow, but is sometimes the reality check that we all need. You're a strong woman and I have no doubt that you'll be able to work through your diagnosis and come out on the other side even stronger. Here's to a great 2017!

    ReplyDelete
  32. I am so sorry the convo with Becky sucked out your joy. I've been there... expecting a reaction from someone and not getting it at all. It's so tough and weird.

    I agree with you that having my running "me time" gets me ready for the holidays!

    ReplyDelete
  33. I will admit that I was kind of disappointed with Becky's reaction. I mean, I understand where she is coming from but she should have shown a little bit of sympathy and then remind you that you are a strong and amazing woman and RA will NOT slow you down. Glad you got a couple of runs because I could not. Here's to another amazing 2017!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm hoping for 2017 to bring more fun running memories!

      Delete
  34. Great post, Wendy! Love that you're focusing on the JOY of running. Any, omg, those were some great jumps!

    I ran on Christmas in a Santa hat, too. It's not so cold and snowy here in Vegas, but still so much fun!

    ReplyDelete
  35. Sorry you didn't get the TLC when you needed it. It's important to know that the things that are important and life-changing to you are important to others in your life, too, and not just brushed off. I'm glad you were able to express your feelings to her in email and talk about it.

    ReplyDelete