Friday, October 14, 2011

The Only Way to Know is to Try

So I took Wednesday off like a good sick person, but was back at it on Thursday.  Despite still feeling run-down from the cold I knew some exercise would help my energy level and maybe even kick this cold out of my body altogether.  At the gym I did Week 8/Day 2, a 28 minute run, doing intervals, and felt great.  I ran with that easy feeling of, "I can do this, no problem" that feels so good.  After the run I did back, biceps and core work before stretching.  In the evening I felt a little cough coming on and worried maybe my cold was going to move into my chest.  In an effort to banish the illness I decided to take Friday off and get some rest.

Woke up Friday feeling iffy and was a bit cough-y but nothing too serious.  We ended up having a busy day despite my taking the day off to get some rest.  Marek finally got a Halloween costume (he chose Buzz Lightyear - there's a shocker) and we had some nice family time.  My cough seemed to have disappeared by midday and when the kids went down for their afternoon naps I was feeling good enough to go to the gym.  It was a gorgeous day so I took the opportunity to ride my bike to the gym.  Despite it being 82 degrees out I felt good on the bike and had fun riding to the gym.

I got there feeling strong and did my chest and triceps routine with core work (including two 40 second plank positions - yes!) and stretching.  I debated doing the stair climber since I still had to ride home but decided I was feeling good so I did it, but kept it at 43 steps per minute the whole time (I push it to 50spm whenever I feel strong enough).

I got on my bike and headed down the road.  There are two routes for me to get home.  One with a big BIG hill and one with a small/medium hill (these are by my standards).  I have been taking the small/med route so far.  But I have faced off with the big hill in the past and thanks to my blog I know exactly what happened.  The first time I tried to ride over it (7/8/08 and 160lbs) I had to take a break part way up.  The second time (three weeks later, 7/20/08) I made it.  So back to today - I'm riding away from the gym and I get this idea to try and ride over it.  This is the gist of what plays out in my head:

When you rode over that hill before you were way fitter and weighed a lot less.
Yeah but it doesn't hurt to try.
That's a big hill Michelle.  You can't do that yet, you're not strong enough.
The only way I will know if I can succeed is to try, that's the only way to find out.  If you make it up halfway and have to turn around, fine, you tried, better luck next time.  At least you'll know where you stand.  Failure just means you challenged yourself and challenging yourself is good.

So by the time I arrived at the intersection where I had to decide I turned toward the hill.  I made it up that hill.  I made it.  You are probably not shocked by that but I am.  I don't think I believed I could do it.  I made the attempt more out of a desire to push myself and less out of a belief I could do it.  But I did it, and I felt good, I felt proud, I felt strong.  These small day-in, day-out victories are so special to me.  And they are the kind of reward I never knew existed when I was living my past life as a couch potato. 

So the other side of that hill, what was today the downhill for me, is probably twice as hard.  And someday, I don't know when, I will ride over that hill too.

So I'm taking tomorrow off, which means I only went to the gym (gasp!) four days this week.  But I had a cold, which is almost gone, so I know I'll be back on track next week.  Oh!  I almost forgot, I lost .6 pounds this week, and my body fat dropped down to 40%.  I'm looking forward to seeing that number drop into the 30's.


  1. Where are the exclamation points?!!! Okay, looks like I'll have to add them. You made it over the BIG hill!!! Weighing more than you did before, and not having as much time training. You ARE fit, you ARE strong, You ARE awesome!!!! And you lost again this week...and whatever that body fat thing is, it went down too. Rejoice!

  2. Yippee! Any seemingly impossible hill which is overcome is very newsworthy! Good job on the body fat loss too...all progress...

  3. Love that you are taking time to celebrate all victories! It's all of the small ones that make you strong!


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