Up and Out

This morning was awesome.  Seriously awesome.

I never thought I would ever say that about getting up at the crack of dawn and working out, but I’m saying it now.  Awesome.  Sometimes everything just falls into place for me, and this morning it absolutely did.

I got to bed last night at a decent time, got a full night’s sleep, and woke up when my alarm went off at 5:45am.  Most of the time this is the hard part for me.  I hit snooze and linger in bed for awhile, napping on and off until I have to will myself to get out of bed.  This morning I got up, got my running shoes, drank a sugar-free energy booster, and out I went.  Still dark out, a little cooler than usual, but I was feeling good.

The plan was to finish a 6 km walk (but with a little hustle).  I was doing fine, but about 30 minutes in my stomach started rebelling against the energy booster.  I think the only change I would make there is to have something to eat when I drink the energy booster.  I think it would have kept my stomach from feeling like it was eating itself.

Forty-five minutes in and I’m cruising along, but my hips were killing me.  It’s never my legs, it’s always my hips.  That familiar ache screaming at me to stop, rest, or at the very least slow down.  “We can’t do this, you’re going too fast, trying too hard, please I’m begging you to stop.  No one will ever know.  It will be our little secret”.

Then, like a gift from the music gods, the familiar strains of “Suit and Tie” start up.  Suddenly Justin Timberlake is slapping me on the ass and whispering in my ear “go girl, you got this”.  And I totally did.  I’m walking, I’m singing, people are looking at me like I’m crazy, and I don’t even care.  I am crazy, and proud of it.  If crazy is the only thing that’s going to get me healthy, then I’m all in.  I just kept walking, and soon there was no more pain.

Walking back up to the apartment door this morning after killing 6 km was one of the proudest moments for me, I just had to write about it.  I feel calm and cool, my head is clear and I’m ready to take on the day.  And I’m actually looking forward to tomorrow.  🙂

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Rise and Shine

On Monday my friend Ry sent me an email. The email contained an mp3 file and the following instructions:

Ok…here is an assignment for you. Attached I’ve placed an MP3. Do not listen to it right now. I want you to do the following:

a) put it on your iPod
b) the next morning walk/run you go out for, make it the first thing you play – listen to it only then

Now it should be said that I am an impatient person. Giving me something that I can’t use right away is tantamount to showing a child a toy and telling them the have to wait two hours to play with it. I’m going to loose my shit.Rise and Shine

But in an effort to be somewhat of an adult about this, I reluctantly followed his instructions.

Because of a back i jury (I get occasional bouts of sciatica) I was forced to abandon my Tuesday morning workout.  The plan this week was for my rest days to be Wednesday and Thursday, which meant my next workout would not have been until Friday.  Well there was no way in hell I was going to wait until Friday.  So up I got on Wednesday at 5:15am and did a little check to make sure my back was in functioning mode (I make it sound like I bounded out of bed, which is not how my body works. It was more of a slow crawl).

So there I was 5:30am, running shoes laced up, iPod on, standing in front of my building….and off I go.

The track is called Rise and Shine. I researched it a bit afterwards and it’s from a Nike motivational commercial.

It was exactly what I needed.

Ry knows all too well how I let the little voices in my head talk me down, how I let them win. How I let them tell me that I can’t do it….I’m too fat, too slow, I’m not getting anywhere, I’m not good enough. They are the same voices that taunt me with cheeseburgers and cupcakes, and then promise me we’ll try again harder tomorrow. I hate those voices. They are mean, they are bullies, and they are wrong.

I can do this. Yes I’m fat, but I won’t be forever and yes I’m slow but I will get faster.

I am going somewhere and it’s to the mall to buy new clothes for the hot body I’m creating.

I love cheeseburgers and cupcakes, but there is a time and place for indulging and it can’t happen everyday.

And trying harder doesn’t start tomorrow, it starts right now

Let the Music Play

I love music.  No, even that is probably an understatement.

Image courtesy of Idea go/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Idea go/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I LOVE MUSIC.

I love songs with amazing lyrics that make you think, I love songs that make you not have to think too hard.  I love melodies and a great beat that make me want to get up and shake my groove thing.   Music can take you back to the past, help define the present, and push you towards the future.

Music has always had a big influence on my life.  Growing up, there was always music playing in the house—ABBA, Barbara Streisand, Luciano Pavarotti (my rock influences didn’t come until I got a little older).  And although I liked music, it wasn’t until I went to my first concert at 13 that I really fell in love.  The date: summer of 1988, the venue: Hamilton Place, the band: Platinum Blond.  It was loud, it was crowded, and we had awful seats, but at the time it was the best night of my young life.  I’ve been to many concerts since then, and seen bands from Blue Rodeo to New Kids on the Block.

Yes, I just admitted I’ve seen New Kids on the Block in concert.  And no, I’m not ashamed one bit.  That’s what I love about music—there’s something for everyone.

I am rarely without my iPod.  On the bus, on the train, going for a walk…I love having a good tune I can plug into.  I have just over 2,100 songs in my collection now—everything from Bach to Britney Spears and Ella Fitzgerald to Erasure.  It’s a collection that spans my 38 years on this planet and beyond, from well before I was born to now.

Music really helps shape my workouts as well (not that I’ve been doing too many of those lately, but I digress).  I’m constantly on the hunt for new music to add to my workout playlist—music that moves and inspires me to get up and go!  The right song can put me in a mood to push harder when I’m tired, and to keep going when I want to stop.   I really like knowing what other people are listening to and what inspires them, so I thought I’d share some of my favourite workout songs.  This is just a glimpse of what I’m listening to right now and it changes frequently.

Blurred Lines – Robin Thicke (feat. T.I. & Pharrell)
Part of Me – Katy Perry
Catch My Breath – Kelly Clarkson
Are You Gonna Go My Way – Lenny Kravitz
Fight the Power – Public Enemy
Hella Good – No Doubt
How You Like Me Now – The Heavy
I Can’t Wait – Nu Shooz
It’s a Beautiful Day – Michael Bublé
Mama Said Knock You Out – LL Cool J
Sweet Child O’Mine – Guns and Roses
Walking in Sunshine – Katrina and the Waves
Stompa – Serena Ryder
S&M – Rhianna (Dave Aude Radio Mix)
Raise Your Glass – P!nk
Suit and Tie – Justin Timberlake (feat. Jay-Z)

So friends, what type of music inspires you?  What songs get your toes tapping and just make you just want to get up and go?  Hopefully some of the songs that get me moving will get you moving too!