So, Jessica doesn’t work out. At all. Well, she did once.
Back when I was young, and we had been together only for a few years (so, when I was 15. Just kidding, but when I was 24 or so. Before we were married, certainly.), I ran full marathons. OK, I ran 3 full marathons. In 8 months. It was a little crazy. I haven’t run 26.2 miles since then, and I really have no plans to do it again for several reasons. A) training takes a ton of time, and I can’t be away from the family for 5 hours of me time every Saturday morning. B) Even if I could take that me time on Saturday mornings, I would have exactly zero energy to hang with a 6 year old and a 9 month old after running for 5 hours straight. C) I have done it before. And, D) I am no longer crazy (heh. 13 miles is totally not crazy. 26.2 is just nutty. I have perspective. I promise.).
I digress. My last marathon was in Myrtle Beach, SC. I hadn’t trained that well (that’s what happens when you run three ridiculously long races in 8 months), and I hadn’t gotten a ton of sleep the night before. By about mile 8, I knew that this run was going to suck. I saw her at mile 13 or so. Jessica has race cheering down to an art. A few years before, I did a sprint triathlon in Charleston that was, shall we say, poorly organized. Jess took the megaphone from the announcer, and as my friend Jess O and I approached the finish line she told jokes, got the crowd to their feet, and chanted our names. It was excellent. Here in Myrtle Beach, she had her cow bell, some water and chocolate Power Bars to offer me, and was wearing her comfy Tretorns. She could see by my face that I was not doing well. I slowed to a walk, and she fell into step with me. “You can do it. You can. You can do it.” “I can’t.” Once tears start flowing on a run, you know it is a bad sign. “Come on.” She started jogging. This must have surprised me so much that I started back up again. She ran with me for two miles. Two. For a person who had never before run a mile outside of a required PE class, this is pretty amazing. She sent me on my way (and then had to make her way 2 miles back to the car). I struggled, but I finished that marathon.
I didn’t intend this to be cheesy, but as I’m writing this, I’m realizing the echos of chemo in those moments. Yes, much more serious. And six months of chemo is much longer than a slow 26.2 miles on a flat course, but the number of times when she offered me support, gave me tissues for the tears, took up my slack, told me I could do it (and offered me chocolate along the way) cannot be counted. And, as I figure out who I am post treatment, as I deal with the psychological crap of facing tests and wondering if every little thing is cancer and thinking that it is surely going to come back, she is there to offer me what I need.
I am clearly amazingly lucky.
She told me this evening before she went out to meet some friends that I should write more narrative in these posts. “I skim over the workouts. They’re boring!” “Well, maybe not to people who want to figure out a workout!” “OK, maybe that small population. You should write stories. Like of how unsupportive I am of your working out all the time. Ha.”
So, ha. Sometimes, I do feel guilty as I sneak out of bed early early early in the morning to go to the gym. She used to complain that I woke her up, but now she’s up all night with Trudy, so she’s usually so passed out at 5:15 that she doesn’t hear me. And, I think she’d rather me go early than during family or Jill and Jessica time. Sometimes I know that I get frustrated because she doesn’t understand what it feels like for me to skip a day, or she rolls her eyes on Sunday afternoons when I say that I want to get a quick run in. But, even though she has not, in the 14 years we’ve been together, joined me in workout addiction, I do have hope. I mean, she’s only 34. I’ve got tons of time to convert her!!
So, if you don’t want to read the next boring boring boring part about my workout today, just skip it. Know that you’re in good company!
My trainer suggested that I occasionally do my run after I do a leg weight workout to build strength. So, I did that today. Here’s the run down (heh, see what I did there?):
9:40 second mile warm up
20 forward and 20 each side ball crunches
20 side walk over lunges (feet a workout mat width apart. Full side lunge over the left foot. Keeping your butt low, walk your hands over to the right side into a full lunge. Leg lift the left leg. Repeat.)
20 squat jumps
1 minute cobra off the mat
10 each side glute dips
1 minute jumping jacks
20 reverse crunches
10 full pushups
16 volleyball jumps
15 each side side crunches off the bosu ball
3 squat walk in and outs (start in a full squat. walk feet out to the side as far as you can go, and then walk them back in, staying in a full squat)
30 seconds high knees
I then finished with 2 miles in 18:30.
Today I ate TWO smoothies. My regular one for breakfast, and for lunch I made one that Melanie suggested in the comments a few days ago. I liked it, but next time, I’ll leave out the lemon. The taste was just too strong. I added almond milk:
1 apple, chopped
2 handfuls spinach
juice of 1/2 lemon (too much)
1/2 cup almond milk
blend and enjoy
For snacks: apple, plain greek yogurt with honey and dried apricots
In the middle of the afternoon, I realized it is the second of my cheese days this week, so I had some yummy white cheddar on toasted homemade whole wheat bread. I also decided that I won’t waste a cheese day with parm in pesto, even if it is homemade pesto!
One of my all time favorites (again from The Grit Cookbook):
Chickpea and Feta Salad
2 cans chickpeas, drained
½ med red onion, finely minced
2 T minced fresh basil
2 cups (I use less) finely crumbled feta
½ cup Grit Vinaigrette (recipe here in the dinner part of the post)
½ tsp salt
½ tsp freshly ground pepper
Combine all and toss until well blended. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour, but the longer, the better. Serve well chilled over greens.
I had an orange for dessert.
So, do you workout with your significant other (lucky!), or do you have a workout partner? Do you prefer to exercise alone? Do you skim the workout section of these posts? (I won’t grade you down if you do!)