Although we are still three weeks away from the official day of summer, I am going to declare it summer in Colorado. Today the temperature is in the high 80s and judging by how hot our home was last night, I am guessing the temps did not drop much lower than that in the evening.
With the summer months comes bbq’s, leisurely bike rides, family time, fresh mown grass, long sunny days, lemonade and popsicle’s, road trips and afternoons spent lounging at the pool. Some people workout more to look dyno-mite at the beach and others use their precious time to spend with family. Typically, I come out of winter hibernation and use May-October as my months to explore outside while sweating as much as humanly possible.
This year is no different. A friend of mine started a website called Slambooy Fitness (last name: Lambooy. Fun play on words, right?) to share his knowledge and passion for fitness with others through his health tips, workout plans, meal prep instruction, and monthly challenges. His first challenge already has a massive following that I wanted to share with you, in case you needed some support/inspiration/challenge in your (sweaty) life. Here’s the deal:
- Run a 5k everyday in June (start today since I am just now telling you about this!)
- Post your run details on Instagram or Twitter
- Use #slambooy5kchallenge to find others that can support you
- Start your summer off by annihilating this goal!
This month I am committing to this challenge and I hope that you will too! If you need any personalized support, shoot me an email and we can cheer each other on. Happy sunny, sweaty and goal-crushy summer!
**Picture LOL: my cousin found this on a workout site and forwarded it to me. How did this person know that I rock a 10 minute pace?!**
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Tagged betsy fry, Challenge, coach, Denver, fit, Fitness, happiness, Health, run, summer, workout
Day 114: Yesterday I decided to try out my first run since I have been sick. Unfortunately, my mind was feeling way more ambitious than my body and I had to change my route ten minutes into my run. I set out to run six miles and ended up only running three. My achy lungs and drippy nose gave slid me a thank you note later in the day for cutting it quits a little early.
Day 115: Today I was gone from the house over 13 hours for work combined with meetings. I got home at 8:00 pm, snacked on some cashews, sat on the couch and fought my first serious urge to give up this challenge. If it wasn’t for Mike + the newly hooked up ceiling anchor for our home TRX (that he put up today) + his “you have to Betsy” comment, then this would be a different post.
I did a 35 minute TRX video while wearing my warm socks (they’re calling for up to 24 inches of snow tonight/tomorrow, that calls for ugly warm socks) and Mike stood beside to help me figure out how to set up the straps. A few minutes into it I felt energized and excited about the possibility of eventually looking like the fitness model in the video.
Everyone has the days that they want to give up, today was mine. Subconsciously I know that I would not have given up if Mike wasn’t here, but having someone else to push me along got me to sweat faster. As I was grunting through some of the exercises I thought about ways that I cheer myself on everyday. My favorite phrases that I tell myself are simply, “you can do this” and “you want this.” They are both gentle nudges that get me to the place I want to be. So tomorrow when I am snowed into my house and have to dig a tunnel out to the street I will be saying “you want this” over and over again…
Day 107: On day 107 I went for a five-mile run from our apartment to Washington Park. I will slowly be adding more and more runs to my workouts because of a half-marathon that I am training for in May. I would like to say that the run felt fantastic, which it kind of did, but I really think that being away from the altitude for 20 days messed with my ability to run. Maybe? Or maybe that’s just an excuse. I’ll find out soon.
Day 108: Today I walked to the closest Core Power Yoga to my house. It was 60 degrees and not a cloud in the sky. I couldn’t help but think of how grateful I am for everything in my life on my walk over. The instructor, Lucinda, had instructing down to a science. It was beautiful. She started out class by talking about how we measure our lives by big events (birthdays, holidays, heartbreak, moves, etc), but it’s the moments in between that are just as important. She tied this into class by asking us to pay extra attention to the transitions in between poses. It’s in those transitions that help us deepen our practice and find happiness in our everyday lives.
Lately I have been writing a lot about being tired, feeling crappy and out of sorts. Today, Stella got her groove back. I can imagine that a yogi might read this post and say “you can’t have a best practice ever,” but that’s honestly what today felt like. My legs floated up to my hands in between flows, my front warrior leg looked parallel to the ground, my dancer felt like I was flying and my breath was powerful and rhythmic. Everything seemed like the way it was meant to be. The entire day felt like that; a graceful dance to music that helped life fall into place.
I suppose a super beautiful day in the middle of January can make life feel like that or perhaps life is trending more that way. Either way, I’ll take it!
Day 95: Yesterday it was 1 degree in Columbus, OH. To say that it was cold is an understatement. Every single time I walked outside I annoyed myself by saying “BBBBBRRRRR, IT’S FREEZING OUT HERE.” After nine hours of errand running all over town, that line got old quickly. Needless to say, we would not be using the outdoors as our gym. We started calling the local gyms to check on reasonable drop-in rates and stumbled upon the gem called the “YMCA.” Have you heard of it? Seriously, those places get overlooked and given a bad-wrap.
The one we went to gave us a free three-day trial, free sweat towels and an endless amount of grunting coming from the nearby highschool power lifters. Besides the occasional startled feeling from the aforementioned grunting, it was a great experience. I ran my first 8 minute mile (maybe ever?) and got in some lifting time. Oh and the sweat was complimentary too! I am a sucker for anything that’s on the house…
Day 96: It has been snowing in Ohio for 48 hours straight with only an inch of accumulation. I am still confused about how that can even happen, but leave it to the high-winds in corn country to make that possible.
I have a darling cousin, Ellen, who works at a uber nice gym called Urban Active. We dropped in for a workout today to squeeze in some family sweatin’ time. I did about 45 minutes of mixed up cardio and ended my workout with 10 minutes of ab work. Between the family, friends, wedding planning, moving, welcoming home and hugs, this week has proved to be the most difficult week of the challenge so far. However, by continuing to put my health first (amidst the craziness) I have been able to calm my nerves, eat out meals with the family without stress of weight gain and carve out some me/us time. All of which, I know I would not have done if I was not committed to this challenge.
Day 88: I apologize for the lack of daily blogs, but my life is overflowing with love, family, friends, food, wine, beaches and travels right now. Finding the time to write has proved difficult. Yesterday I crammed in a 53 minute worked at the Navy Fitness Center in Norfolk while Mike spent some time wrapping up his time in the Navy. I did a sprint workout on the treadmill, weight lifting circuits with a ton of ab work crammed in between sets to make it higher intensity. It was fun working out in a Naval facility, they have great cable. It makes it hard to get off a cardio machine. Seriously.
After that, we drove up to Washington, DC to spend some time with a few members of my family. My Mom, Step-Dad and brother took us out to our favorite restaurant, Central, to celebrate Mike’s return home. It was a nice reminder of why I workout as much as I do; to ensure that I can continue to eat whatever I want. Cheese puffs, mushroom risotto, lobster burger and a chocolatey desert? Don’t mind if I do…
Day 89: Today Michael and I ran 5.5 miles together from my parents house in Glover Park up to American University, over towards the National Cathedral, down around the Naval Observatory, through embassy row, ending in Georgetown for a brunch date with my friend Stacy. This was our first time running together in six months and I was able to keep up with Mike a little better than I have in the past. We stayed at a 9.15 pace for the whole time and were able to hold a conversation for the majority of the run. It’s a good feeling to know that this challenge is paying off in numerous ways. Building up my speed is definitely an added bonus. And if I continue to eat the way that I did last night, there is no amount of speed or distance that can save my waistline…
As I clicked open my blogging screen I thought, “I forgot to workout today!” and then realized that is not true. I did workout. Seriously, my brain and my heart were on a flight to Norfolk a few days ago and left my body here to fend for itself!
This morning I ran in Washington Park. It was one of those warm sunny winter mornings that made me happy to be a runner. My run had quite a few fun interruptions…I can’t tell you what they are, I’m bound by contract to keep my mouth shut! Not really, but I will be able to fill my readers in on some fun news in a few short weeks. Until then, please stick with my random posts about losing my mind and a completely future focused Betsy (until January 4th, when I finally get to see Michael).
Betsy’s body, sans brain
In my mind Denver is always sunny and beautiful. Today was a perfect example of what I think of when someone mentions Colorado; 50 degrees and perfect bluebird skies on the day before winter solstice. Hallelujah Mother Nature!
This weather is to runners what a pair of hot blonde twins are to The Situation. It made my body crave a run all day. Unfortunately I did not get that chance until the sun was going down and the temperature was back down to about 37 degrees. About ten minutes into my run I realized that my legs were moving a lot faster than they usually are. Well that, or my legs were half frozen and just felt like they were moving fast in comparison to the thick cold air. I immediately regretted not grabbing my running beanie, gloves and a face mask (yes, I run with those sometimes. Creeped out yet?).
Once I adapted to a normal stride I started gazing at the beautiful houses that face the park. My mind started wandering to a life that does not require quarters to do a load of laundry and of neighbors that do not practice playing the guitar at 11 pm every night. I think that’s part of the reason I enjoy running in Washington Park so much, the beautiful houses allow my mind to dream of the life that I know I will have. Do not get me wrong, in a few short weeks Michael and I will already have an amazing life together…but there is something wonderful about allowing my mind to get lost in the future while my body is so actively engaged in the present.
If I knew what a hashtag meant then this is what mine would be #gratefulforthepresentexcitedforthefuture Too long? Sorry, I warned you that I have zero clue how they are used!
Day 67: Yesterday was one of those days that I had to get up at 5:00 in order to fit in a workout. At 5:00 a.m. I drug my little bum to Pura Vida in Cherry Creek and did the elliptical for an hour (my intention was to run, but it was just to early to bust out those speeds), followed up by a weight circuit with abs mixed it. It was just what I needed to help me get through my long long day.
Day 68: Today I was pooped. All I wanted was a nice candlelight flow somewhere in Denver. After looking up at least ten studio schedules to no avail, I decided to have my own flow in our guest bedroom.
After work my friend and I stopped by a local pub for a beer and a quick catch-up session before I hit my mat. It felt pretty strange to have a bubbly beer noggin while trying to flow in my own home. It was even harder to keep my mind still long enough to balance. If I can’t even have one beer and then flow, no wonder drinking and driving is so dangerous! Although I was a bit woozy, I did have a mini lesson. When I tried to complete tree on one side I immediately reached for my desk to steady my balance. After I did that I realized that I did not need the help at all. My body was perfectly fine adjusting to standing on one leg with my hands pressed in prayer at my chest. On the next leg I did not reach for anything. I just set my pose and concentrated. This made me think about all the times in life I just depend on things that I do not really need, things that just make me feel comfortable.
Sure touching the desk helped me feel stable at first, bit it wasn’t necessary. How many other desks do I have in my life that are enabling me from growing my own strong tree? As soon as I get rid of those comforts, I start to grow my roots and become more active in my own life. So what are your desks? What is preventing you from doing in your life and how do you overcome reaching for them?
Yesterday morning (my internet was down last night, sorry for the late post) I woke up at 6:30 and went for a run from my house. The convenience of being able to do that is a wonderful thing, unfortunately it takes at least 15 minutes of running to get into a prettier neighborhood. Since I tend to obsess over how long I worked out or how far I went, I decided to try something more fun and less stressing. I would run out for whatever five songs came on during the shuffle on my phone and then run home. I’m not sure how long it ended up being, but it was cold enough that by the time I got home my former frostbitten fingers and toes were solidly numb.
After my run I decided that I should go to church (which is something I have not done in way to long). I followed a friends recommendation and went to a non-denominational church in the Denver burbs. Let me give you a little tidbit about myself that you may not know. I love the kind of church where a band plays up front, the words to the songs are on a movie theater style screen and people throw their arms up to God while they sing. This was that type of church. I do not think I have ever lifted my arms all the way up before, but yesterday I had those bad boys up and open during all of worship. It was emotional, being so open to receive God and love. I am not going to get really religious on you, I just made a huge connection while I was there. I realized that the only other time I lift my arms to receive is during yoga. It’s such a powerful act to do and it feels as though you are giving yourself up to a greater being. Maybe this is why I love yoga right now more than any other athletic activity. I could not even imagine going to yoga and then church- whoa, powerful overload! But one can never have enough open-hearted, arms soaring, love coming and going, powerful healing, intention giving moments in life.
Since I truly believe this, I want to know what you do in your life that makes you feel this way? Share it with the world because these moments are what life is all about.
Day 18: The first job I took after college was in Human Resources at
Keystone Resort. If you craned your neck far enough out the window you could see the slopes from my office. My apartment was .5 miles from the gondola. Life was good. I lived there for a year and a half and had a lot of big first time life experiences; first pair of skis, first successful double black diamond run, first frostbite (in multiple places), first time eating sushi, first real job, first time paying bills, first serious car accident on ice, first love, first heartbreak, first eating disorder and the best decision I have ever made: leaving. I loved my life there, but I knew there was something else waiting for me.
Yesterday I skied Arapahoe Basin with a pair of fresh eyes and a changed heart. I am grateful for the things in my past that shaped the person that I am today. I have not dwelled on my mistakes, but I have built from them. To say that I was overcome with emotion yesterday would be an understatement. I let go of a huge part of my life a long time ago. And yesterday, more than ever, I embraced the present and my future.
The fresh snow, bluebird skies, snow-dusted pine trees and mountains framing the runs had little to do with my realization. Nelson Mandela said it best, “there is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.” The mountains will always be there for me whenever I need some soul awakening. For that, I am ever grateful.
Day 19: For lack of extra time today, I have to combine the two days. Tonight I am going to practice yoga at lululemon at our weekly Vino & Vinyasa.