Schools Back.. Skerred.

In my youth I decided that university wasn’t for me. I wanted to see the world. To live in another country. To Fly Like An Eagle. That’s exactly what I did. After an extended time overseas, I finally came back to Australia for good, in 2004. I met a guy, married, worked, had three kids…. For that reason, my university journey is taking shape in my late thirties, instead of my teens.

Tomorrow, the kids go back to school for term 3. A welcomed return for me (not so much for them, because helloooo…homework – YUK!)

It’s also a week until I return to university. After having studied online for a few years (and getting nowhere thanks to not getting cross-credits) I have found that on-campus is definitely the best way for me to study successfully. The only problem is I have mild social anxiety. I do not like crowds, and I do not like being around a lot of strangers. Whenever I think about having to go in to the campus I am a combination of excitement to be learning new things, and sick to my stomach because..people.

I’m trying not to acknowledge my anxiety and nerves, but they are creeping up, sitting on my chest and pressing down so much that I can physically feel it change the way I breathe.

I don’t have any ‘university friends’ as last semester I was doing a couple of mandatory subjects that were aimed at a cross section of courses, thus not strictly in my ‘field of study’. Also, I’m not good at making friends. I love being friends. I love having people in my community, but I’m so awkward when it comes to making them. I have a knack of being really quiet and observant, until I know you. Once I do know you though, look out! You’ll never get me to shut up! It’s hard, but I’m going to try to reach out this semester.

Anywho, I’ve managed my anxiety with diet and exercise for awhile now, however my exercise has slipped. My diet isn’t terrible, and I try to stick to Gluten Free, Wheat Free as much as I possibly allow myself. I certainly don’t beat myself up when I do eat a spoonful of Nutella, but I am aware it will affect me. In the past I have seen marked improvements through exercise. Something I have learned is that I really need to do a ‘type’ of movement every day. If I don’t do it every day, my body becomes a blob. Yesterday I had great intentions of going out for a run (jog/walk/shuffle – let’s face it, what I do isn’t graceful, but it is out there!) I had on all the gear and then bam… throughout the day, my mind talked me out of going. I didn’t do it. Complete regret. Why didn’t I just lace up the shoes and go? I KNOW I’ll feel better. It’s like I self-sabotage myself by not doing it. Self-talk is huge. How you talk to yourself reflects on how you put your own energy into the world. I also believe that you can change the way you think by being conscious of the how you speak to yourself. Being present, and listening. I’ll listen to Benedict…because he knows…


Anywho, this week I am committing to three thirty minute runs (and anything above that is a bonus!). I am also starting back at dance class this week, which I thoroughly enjoy. So, whilst the anxiety is creeping up, and I’m feeling panicky, and scared to return to school, I am also going to commit to getting out and exercising, as well as being kind to myself. Because really, in the end, being kind to yourself really does matter. Regardless of my ‘friend count’ I know that I am important, and I matter.

***Shout Out to a wonderful online community. I’ve written about them before. They are known as Operation Move. A true Sisterhood. If you are into being around positive women, who uplift, encourage, and inspire, then they are your community! Come over and check them out on Facebook! I’m fairly certain that without them I wouldn’t believe in myself half as much, and I certainly wouldn’t have the confidence to move as much.***

Our Friendship Goes The (Running) Distance…

I have a little sister, her name is Lola.. Oh wait..hang on… wrong opening line!!

Actually, I have a little friend, her name is D….. and I lub her very much!

D and I have been friends for a little while now (thank you social media!) and we have a common interest (among many) of running. She introduced me to the wonderful, supportive, online group Operation Move and I haven’t looked back! Recently I flew up to see her for a visit, but also because she had convinced me to sign up for the Tour De Tambourine 10K run! Talk about crazy!!!

Flying to Queensland, I got off the plane and was immediately wrapped in a warm blanket of lov…..no, not love…it was humidity!! Oh My!!! That stuff is thick..and sticky!! Not used to that at all, but yay… Queensland.

Leading up to November, D and I had undertaken a 12 week training program with Operation Move, but had completed the training a few weeks before. Both of us were a little struggling with fitness, and decided we’d just spend this run as a fun run, not for any record times. This is why I think, and want to absolutely stress…. running with friends makes it fun!!!! I know that running can be a wonderful, individual time out from anybody (mostly the kids), pushing yourself to get your pace and fastest time, but running with a friend (my first time!) was soooo much fun!

tourdetamboWe picked up our race packets (so easy!) and I was so surprised that it had MY NAME on it!!! I was so bloody excited that I forgot I’d be pushing through 10k the next day!!!!

tambofriends

You know how running can be a mind game, and there is no “only” about it..if you do 1km, you do 1km, no matter how slow you go?! Well the lady who took our photos asked what distance we were doing and I made the mistake of saying “Only 10k”…both her and D corrected me, that it’s not just “only”….. remember that… no matter the distance, it counts! She also said to us “The Journey is Now” … that was really sweet. All the hard work we put in, and maybe the work we didn’t, now mattered! Not much else to do, we relaxed and drank coffee… a staple in our diet… and friendship!

We had a yummy Indian dinner, go check out the restaurant Masala Shanti if you’re ever there!

Race Day Ready …. lucky for the band aids in the cars first aid kit! I have a tricky little toe and without band aids I’m not sure I’d have a toe left …hah. tambostuffHow good does the Operation Move shirt look?? So incredibly honoured and proud to be able to wear it. This wonderful, online group of women prove every day that you can be all shapes, sizes, and ages to succeed, just by Moving!

tambocoffee

Mandatory Pre-Race Coffee It’s good for the lungs…seriously!

The event was well set up, and a great course. The only downfall, the lack of photographers on the course (We’d even discussed our photographic poses in the week leading up to the event!), and few marshals around the outer parts of the course (Oh, and the lack of bling *sob*) …Apart from that, it was a top notch event. Lots of hydration stations, although the water spraying we got at the end would have gone well throughout the course!!!
Since there were no photographers, it was lots of runfies and selfies!! So Much Fun! Going up

The hills...so many hills!!!

The hills…so many hills!!!

the hills killed, going down the hills..not so much! It was also nice to see other people out on the course from Running Mums Australia who were very supportive of their team mate who was walking/jogging with injury..I swear they clocked up heaps more mileage through doubling back!

The running community I’ve been able to witness really is a great one. As long as you’re out

ONE MORE KILOMETRE TO GO...we can do it (just don't stop on a hill - that was the advice of a pro running past us!)

ONE MORE KILOMETRE TO GO…we can do it (just don’t stop on a hill – that was the advice of a pro running past us!)

there – running, jogging, shuffling, or briskly walking…you’re a part of a super global community! There’s always someone there to encourage you to keep going, and someone letting you know you’re doing a great job, even if you’re internally struggling!

We finally got to the finish line and crossed over at the EXACT same time!!! *all of the smiles*

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WE DID IT! …And all we got was a wrist band! I wore the ShIT outta that wrist band the next day! But seriously..we did it!!!

I’m so glad I got to go to QLD and run an event with a friend. No record for finishing. But it was all about the friendship, and going the distance.

I’m so glad that D is in my life. I’m so glad that she is my friend. Although we live in different states, our souls are still entwined.

The End.

Kara-Goucher

Never Let Numbers Suck The Joy Out Of Your Awesomeness

I’ve broken up with my scales, because quite frankly, they were sucking the joy out of my awesomeness.

I’ve always had a war with the scales. What the numbers represent. Berating myself if they weren’t going down, even when I was starving myself on 1200 calorie diets and 500 calorie workouts, daily. Worried that I was too fat, too heavy, and the numbers were too high. That stops, today.

Yesterday, I went on a date day with my 2 boys. We saw Guardians of the Galaxy (AWESOMENESS personified!) Before we left, I got dressed in my regular attire of jeans and tee, put on some makeup, and I felt really great. I realised the feeling did not come from being ‘skinny'(which I am not), it did not come from being my ‘ideal weight for my height’ (which I am not), it did not come from starving myself to fit in a calorie count(which I am not). It came from my ATTITUDE. I looked past the mirror, and inside myself (how very cliche!) and realised my self-worth is so much more than numbers. It was the first day I’ve felt that  training plan I am doing through Operation Move event training is actually making a difference, inside and out. 

I am by no means at my ideal weight for height as per all those people that tell you you should be, and I’m okay with that. What I am though, is healthy. I don’t have any health ailments. I have the ability to go out and run long distances, 10km and beyond. I am able to give blood when needed. I am HEALTHY. I am currently training for the Tour De Tambourine 10k event in November, as well as the Spartan Race in October. None of the excess fat I am carrying will stop me from doing that!  I am so sick of seeing all the fat-shaming that is going on at the moment. I saw an article online today that talked about ‘fat people’, and I was horrified. The thing is, there is no such thing as ‘fat people’. There are ‘people’, and some have excess fat. Some also don’t have much fat, and yet, they too are shamed for being ‘skinny’. I’m a little frustrated, and pissed. I’ve always been the ‘fat one’, or the ‘chubby one’ and it effected me for a very long time. I’m by no means where I was when I was younger, but I have had the ability to carry and birth three beautiful children in this body!!! Why do we need to label people as fat?! A quote that has stuck with me (I can’t remember the source) is…..

 

So anyway, I just wanted to remind you…. not to step on the scales and let that determine the joy, and mood you will be in today. You are Awesome! You will always be awesome! Take care of your health, first and foremost. Appearance is secondary. Next time someone calls you fat, punch them in the face (okay, maybe don’t, but what you can do, is IGNORE them.) Your self worth is more valuable than someone else’s opinon. Be You. BeYouTiful! Now..go forth and Be Awesome!

 

EDIT: The adult jazz class I am doing is totally rocking this song right now!! It’s AWESOME!!!!!

 

P.S On a completely unrelated topic: I loved the new Doctor Who!!!!!