March 26, 2013

The Post Where I Yell a Lot

My Team in Training Marathon got derailed due to injury. I didn't post about it because I was pretty upset. I had a goal that was to help others and help get me through the end of the shitty year that was 2012. I raised half of the $3800 goal and athe money I raised still went to Team in Training and it wasn't a total bust. So that's good. In the meantime I haven't been running since September. For those of you keeping track it's now the END OF MARCH. I've missed running and the fresh air it forces me to gulp down but I couldn't risk greater injury and permanent damage. At least I missed running in the Winter and not the wonderful running seasons of Autumn and Spring. BUT STILL!

So what happened? My physical therapist discovered that I strained the muscle that lifts the leg, the equivalent of the cow's tenderloin muscle. Then with more work we found out that a big butt muscle (a literal pain in my ass) tightened up to the point that it caused my other muscles to over-compensate and it didn't manifest until my front-hip made it impossible for me to run or walk without searing pain. After THREE MONTHS of mother-loving therapy (MERRY CHRISTMAS BANK ACCOUNT) I got the go-ahead to start light workouts with some serious stretching pre and post workouts.

Here I am. Seven months later and back at my heaviest weight since I started Weight Watchers eight (EIGHT!!!!) years ago. During therapy I tried swimming, Pilates and yoga. Those were the least impact and I still had some pain. So all I could do was therapy. When I had the okay I started doing some elliptical training. Boring. I started walking on the treadmill. BOOOORING. I saw some posters around my gym offering a P90X class. INTERESTING. I've had my eye on the DVDs for years but I knew it was too much money for me to spend on new coasters. Also, I don't have anyone pushing me or making sure my form is correct. Here was the solution to all those quandaries. A CLASS!!! I thought about it for a week, took the first intro class and signed up!

I know what you're thinking, "Katherine, you CRAZY." Yes. Yes I am. But not this time. The workouts are varied so there isn't repetitive movement and so far NO INJURY. This is great. I get nutrition information, I get someone telling me to squat deeper, my pants are looser in two weeks! WHAT? THIS IS AMAZING. There couldn't have been better timing. I mean, I miss chocolate and beer but there's an end date and I have a goal. This will make me stronger, faster and more energetic. I don't expect to become Superwoman, but I will be the most SUPER KATHERINE that ever existed. Wish me luck!

March 6, 2013

Shhh. I'm Self Reflecting Over Here.

Something people don't believe about me is that I am more of an introvert than an extrovert. People seem to have a hard time making the following facts jive with one another:

1. I am not shy. Not at all. I have a hard time with a cold introduction, like if I'm at a party by myself or only know one other person, but I can figure it out eventually and tend to do well speaking with people I don't know. And once you get me talking, look out. Amiright? Like, you can't shut me up if you tried.

2. I love to spend time by myself. I do it as much as possible. If I didn't have a cat who loves to talk to me about philosophy, there could be entire weekends where I don't speak to a single living creature. And I am okay with that. A night in at home is gold. GOLD!

That has to do with the reality that introversion and extroversion is how people draw their energy. I have a lot of introverted friends and we talk introversion theory with one another because we find a lot of people, most likely extroverts, don't understand how we need time to recharge and reflect and draw energy from that. That lack of understanding tends to lead to conflict. Extroverts draw energy from other people- being out, doing stuff. I'm not saying that once in a while I reconnect with people and feel recharged and reconnected to the world. That's because I'm not a shy misanthropic hermit.

Parties have an expiration time for me. I would be ready to go far earlier for me than it would for my ex- no matter how much fun I was having. After years of pushing through my comfort zone we ended up being some of the last people at the party every time. But once I got home I would turn in towards myself. I wouldn't talk to anyone at home. I just hit my saturation point and it was time for me to shut down and recharge. I needed far, far more quiet introspection time than my ex did. And it created some problems.

My mother is the solitary extrovert in a family of five. I realized years after moving out that my brother, sister, father and myself tended to spend a lot of time alone. I read and listened to entire albums uninterrupted. My dad read and... read. My brother drew and created his own comics. My sister... I don't know what she did exactly but it wasn't anything with me. My mother craved time and interaction and still does- very much so. That lead to many fights and conflicts with me and other members of my family. But now I'm better equipped to understand her and deal with that. (And I live thousands of miles away and only have to push out of my zone for a few days at a time. So it's manageable. Aaaand I love my mom and try to be better for her.)

This all being said, I love talking with people. I love sharing things about me with others. I love, love, love public speaking. This wasn't always the case. I have my theatre background to thank for that. I used to be deathly afraid of speaking in front of people and was painfully shy. I would be sick to my stomach in new social situations or on presentation day. Realizing that was a hurdle to jump over for overall life success (in what I wanted to accomplish with mine) I ended up in a theatre class (story forthcoming.) There I learned that being open about myself with others was how deep and meaningful connections are made and people learn that they aren't so alone out there.

So. Check out this TED Talk about introversion and its place in our society that celebrates extroversion. And then go out and hug your favorite introvert today.