Cowabunga!

Also known as, “I’m not so tough after all.”

I’m not sure about you, but it seems like my twenties have been like the old guy at the beach walking around with a metal detector, just hoping to find something valuable. I feel like I’ve been on a hunt to find out what makes me truly happy, and what makes me…me.

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The latest piece of metal I dug up is not one I’d take home. It’s called a Mud Run. While digging, quite literally, I discovered just how not tough I really am. Consider the puny, yappy dog that greets you at your neighbor’s door. That small, five-pound sack of snarling teeth and fur doesn’t realize how tiny she is. How easily trampled she is. In my mind, I am this tough, strong, elegant, and graceful person who can accomplish anything. You already know I’m an optimist, and while I can’t think how that could be a bad thing, it definitely puts me in my place now and then. Yesterday opened my eyes to things I do not enjoy, and things I need to work on.

Thing I do not enjoy #1: Getting hurt. I will avoid it at all costs.

Our first “obstacle” was a 15-foot-high wooden structure made of horizontal boards that had large three-foot gaps between them. We had to climb up, over, and down it. As soon I as approached it and realized how far of a fall it would be, and how much it would hurt if I did fall, the fear took over. I suddenly wanted to just run back and wait for the others. It was hard, too. Being slippery from already running and swimming through mud, it was hard to find a good solid grip and then I had to reach my entire body length to find the next rail to continue. It was rocking back and forth from the weight of all these people climbing it and when I was sitting at the top straddling the boards, I froze. With the encouragement of my teammates, I finally made it down, safely, but I have a few bruises today from that one. As soon as I finished, I said aloud, “I hope we don’t have any more climbing obstacles.”

This rope obstacle wasn't as bad as the ones I wrote about.

This rope obstacle wasn’t as bad as the ones I wrote about. I wasn’t able to get a pic of those.

Thing I do not enjoy #2: Climbing obstacles.

We had about 10 more climbing obstacles. Tires, small one-inch boards nailed to a 10-foot wooden wall, rope mesh attached to walls with tracker jacker hives hidden underneath, etc. I would say the majority of the race was running and climbing high obstacles.

Thing I need to work on #1: Agility.

This is a big reason I’ve joined CrossFit, and this weekend made it exceptionally clear how awkward and clumsy I am. I need better control of my body. I need to learn more functional movements so I feel more comfortable in my own skin. I think if I knew everything my body could do, I would’ve been more prepared to handle the obstacles.

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Thing I need to work on #2: Balance.

I thought I had pretty good balance, but watching all of my teammates gracefully clear the log over water, while I made it halfway then fell in, made me aware of how inferior my balance skills are. If only I had a slackline like Mark Sisson! (Btw, he is so cool. I would love to meet him and Anthony Bourdain someday.)

The Mud Run was 80s themed, so obviously it was totally rad seeing all the neon-inspired costumes. I did enjoy the run, and I loved crawling all lizard-like through the mud. I was hoping for more of that. There was a decent amount of swimming and I enjoyed that part, too.

So, it wasn’t all a kick in the butt…just most of it.

Pre-race, obviously

Pre-race, obviously

 

Look on the Bright Side

Everyone copes with life in some way or another. Some embrace the grisly details with spine-tingling excitement like Harry. Others, like Sally, blithely turn their heads to see a more chipper scenario. I’m a lot like Sally. I call myself an optimist.

My idealist switch flipped on sometime when I was a child and I’m really unsure how to turn it off. This Walter Mittyish tendency of mine often leaves me stuck at the corner of Surprised and Disenchanted. When it comes to My List, I frequently imagine grander-than-life adventures complete with Instagram filters and super cool slow motion effects. (My favorite is Brooklyn, but that’s an entirely different post.) Maybe it’s because I’m a Generation Y Yuppy, but regardless of the cause of my perky imagination, I’m grateful for it. The List, and ensuing fantasies, keep me moving, expecting, discovering, and propelling me into new excursions. It opens my mind, my palate, and my heart, and however picture-perfect—albeit imaginary—my expectations can be, I feel like a better person for it.

For laughs, because, after all, laughing is good for you, I’ve compiled a group of some events I dreamed would go one way, but actually turned out less wondrous. Enjoy.

I imagined kayaking like this:

kayaking-full

But in Florida, sans rapids, it looks more like this:

kayaking

In my head, meeting the President would be like this:

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But sometimes you have to settle in life.

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Paddleboarding? You probably already read my post about it, but in my perfect world:

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Instead,…

paddleboarding

Do you have any experiences that you imagined to be spectacular, but they fell a little short of that dream? Were you able to enjoy it anyway?

The Primal Blueprint 21-Day Challenge

First of all, thank you for supporting my sister’s Strong Body Whole Heart campaign. Kelly and Maggie met their goal of $2000 last night! Yay! They are super excited to start recording their podcast and I’m dying to listen. I’ll post the link here as soon as it’s available.

The next thing I’d like to mention is The Primal Blueprint 21-Day Challenge. I made a post last year about how switching to this way of eating and living has changed my life. Now is your chance to try it out! Take the challenge; I’m certain you will never look back. 🙂

The Primal Blueprint 21-Day Challenge
Learn more at Mark’s Daily Apple.

Strong Body Whole Heart

strongbodywholeheart

My exceptional, beautiful, AMAZING sister is starting a podcast with her good friend, Maggie. They are doing an Indiegogo campaign to raise money for all the startup costs: things like a microphone, sound equipment, and sound editing software. There are just four days left, and if they don’t reach their goal of $2000, they don’t get anything and have to start back at 0. I wanted to put this out there for all you active folks who would probably enjoy listening to the podcast once it’s up and running.

Take a look at their video that explains what Kelly and Maggie are about, and how you can get involved!

Strong Body Whole Heart campaign video

Thanks!!

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