Category Archives: Life

Oh, my God, you guys.

Our puppy is so ugly right now.  Seriously, I still love her, I will always love her, but at the moment she’s going through a reeeeally awkward growth spurt, and she has been savagely, mercilessly beaten with the ugly stick.  Her legs are all skinny and weird, and she’s oddly lanky for a Corgi, but the main thing is her head.  Oh my GOD does she look stupid.  Half her teeth are missing, so she’s got constant Derp Tongue, and she’s got a big bump on her snoot where the cartilage hasn’t caught up with the bone.  What’s worse, she’s got crazy, buggy pug eyes right now.  And they have different degrees of buggyness.  Her right eye pops just a fraction more than her left, so it’s always wandering off to the east while her left eye looks straight ahead.  Also we haven’t had rain, so the pollen counts are awful, so she’s got drippy eyes and her face is always stained.  And to cap it all off, the poor ugly thing doesn’t feel good.  She’s tired from the growth spurt, and her teeth hurt like a sonofabitch, so she’s afraid to eat her dinner.  The last two meals have been a mix of soaked kibble and ground beef, so she doesn’t have to chew much, and she wants to eat it out of a HAND, not out of her BOWL.  She’s got just four more baby teeth to lose, from what I can tell–one molar and three canines.  When that molar comes out, I think she’ll feel a whole lot better.  It’s loose, and I want to pull it so badly, but I don’t feel like losing a finger so I’ll just leave it alone.

On a positive note, her adult coat is growing in, and it is gorgeous, all wavy and bright red.  I mostly try to focus on that and just avoid looking at her face.

Oh hi!  It’s been a week.  Between my own fight with the pollen count (I don’t normally suffer from allergies but holy crap my head feels like a bubble of snot), puppy not feeling well, and going straight from work to CrossFit to cooking/eating dinner to spending quality time with my darling to bed… my days have been jam-packed, and blogging has taken a backseat.  Later on in my work season, as we start getting shows running and I’m at home during the day more often, it’ll be a little easier to post regularly.  In the meantime, things will probably stay a little sporadic.

What have we been up to at CrossFit?

Last Saturday was the typical cardio-heavy, time-intensive, partner WOD.  Coach often joins us in working out, so he rarely programs any heavy lifting.  It’s mostly bodyweight movements that don’t require him to keep an eagle eye on everyone.  It was stuff like box jumps, double unders, and a really fun station (no, seriously) that was a 10-minute AMRAP of ball slams, slam ball cleans, and slam ball wall balls.  Wall balls are very different with the slam ball, and I kind of liked it better, although my tendency of catching the ball with my face made me a little nervous (I only did it twice).

Monday was for finding our 1-rep max on strict press, back squats, and power cleans.  I PR’d on two of the three!  My strict press went up to a whopping 68#.  My power clean went to 98# (I wanted that 103# so badly but it wasn’t happening).  My back squat ended up tied with my PR of 143#–I brain-farted trying 148# and went straight to 153#, and it was uggggly.  I didn’t even go for three fails, the first two were so bad.  I needed help bailing out of one of them; I lost my balance and started tipping forward, and there was no way I could chuck it off backward.  Scared the crap out of the coach, but I was fine.  It did highlight my lack of range-of-motion in my lower half.  I always thought it was pretty good, but clearly it needs work, since the bar got ahead of me.

Tuesday was Helen!  400m run, 21 KB swings, and 12 pullups.  I sort-of PR’d; my time went up by 20 seconds, but I was able to Rx the kettlebell part, so I’m calling it a win.  I finished in 14:14 with jumping pullups.  Next goal is to start working on banded pullups (the blue band is not enough, but adding the green band makes it too easy).

Wednesday was a Tabata.  *grumble grumble*  20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of trying not to barf rest, for 4 minutes on each movement.  Box jumps, which I am SUPER proud of because it was a 20″ box and I jumped EVERY REP, situps, sumo deadlift high pulls, front squats, and hand-release pushups.  My scores were 5, 11, 8, 5, and 6.  That one killed me–I was okay Wednesday evening, but I got gradually more sore through the day yesterday, mostly in the abs and quads, which brings us up to…

…today.  A series of AMRAPs!  3 minutes of 3 deadlifts/3 burpees.  3 minutes’ rest.  Then 6 minutes of 6 squat cleans/6 burpees.  Then 6 minutes’ rest.  Then 9 minutes of 9 snatches/9 burpees.  The deadlift round was fine–115#, and I got through 5 rounds + 4 reps.  Then the wheels fell off.  I don’t like squat cleans on a good day; catching the bar in a squat is scary (I am super careful with my squat, and I don’t like to move through it quickly).  And today wasn’t a good day.  I did my first round at 75#, then I took off the little plates and did 2 more rounds with 65#.  3 rounds in 6 minutes.  Not great.  The snatch round wasn’t too bad, I guess… I was just tired.  I briefly considered snatching the empty 45# bar, but remembering my snatch failure from last week pushed me to make it 55#.  And that was fine.  I got it up.  It hurt, and I had to rest a lot, but I got it up and it wasn’t ugly.  I managed 2 rounds and 9 reps on that.

And now I’m home, bills are paid (pennies are being pinched til they squeak, but bills are paid), and we’re looking at a gorgeous long weekend (4 days, in my case!), which hopefully will bring some badly-needed rain.

All we need is a puppy that doesn’t look like a mutant.  That might take a while.


Aaaaand my summer is over.

This weekend was my last precious moment of freedom before I shoulder the yoke that is a full-time job in the theatre.

I’m not a workaholic, not by any stretch.  But my job is basically my other husband, and it’s way more demanding than my real one.  Jason is an absolute star when it comes to putting up with the eccentricities of my occupation.  I work a lot of nights and weekends and some holidays, I rarely have more than one day off a week, my schedule is always changing, and it’s difficult (sometimes impossible) to schedule time off for family things or special occasions.  I had to compromise to get time off for our wedding and honeymoon.  All that said, I do like my job.  Sometimes I even love it.  And I’m good at it.  The pay is shit, but I can’t imagine doing anything else.

Anyway, so we ended up going to the Indiana State Fair on Sunday!  I love the State Fair–I keep saying I’m going to enter something in the fair someday.  There’s the knitting, of course, and I know how to make quilts, and they also have a competition for backyard gardeners that is free to enter.  No prize money, but you get a ribbon if you place.  Maybe someday I’ll even show a chicken!  (Why yes, I was a 4H kid, how did you ever guess.)

One of my favorite things about the State Fair is that my Paleo sensibilities get checked at the gate.  The State Fair is for eating All The Fried Things.  Granted, this year I’m broke and my awesome parents were footing the bill, so I only had a giant corndog and an ice cream cone.  But hot diggity damn that corndog made me happy.

And Saturday’s WOD was another tough one, so I feel like I earned the corndog.  It was a 2-part, 3-person team WOD, with a few minutes’ rest between the parts.

First Part: start each round at 3 minutes.  Work one after another , each partner starting in turn after the person ahead finishes their movement.  8cal row, 20 wall balls, 20 ball slams.  5 rounds.

Second Part: same rotational setup as the first part.  12 burpees, “parking lot run” (which is maybe around 100m-ish), 10 push press, 20 double unders OR 30 singles.

I felt really, really good on the first part.  I don’t especially like rowing, but I’m among the faster women in the box, so I guess I’m doing something right.  I definitely don’t like wall balls, but I’m getting better at them.  I felt a little lame because every time I got up behind Anne after the row, she was done and I had to start right in on the wall balls without any rest, but during the break she confessed she was only doing 15 reps.  I did get maybe ten seconds’ rest after each set of ball slams, so I didn’t die completely.  It was a really tough 15 minutes, though.

And the we got to Part Two and the wheels fell off.  I mean, it took me about a minute just to do the burpees.  And then I was all wobbly on the run.  Then I needed to suck air for a bit before I picked up the bar.  And I was so tired I couldn’t do more than 15 or 16 singles without messing myself up.  I never did do 10 push press on each round–I did 5 at 53# and that was quite hard enough.  After the first round, I didn’t do 12 burpees, either.  I think I did 10, then 6.  And I sat out a full round.  Our timing was all messed up anyway, because no way in hell were we getting through all of that in three minutes.

Maybe I phoned it in, but maybe I don’t care.  I was still sweating enough to fill a bathtub.

My want-to is busted.

Ugh.  I’ve been cleaning the house today.  Our house is never in really terrible shape, but it’s pretty much never really spotless, either.  I realized the other day that there was a rather thick layer of dust on everything–living on a gravel road has its disadvantages.  It’s a bit frustrating, though, because we’re also still in a little post-moving limbo.  There are pictures to hang, but we’ve not decided where to hang them.  There are ornaments and tchotchkes still in boxes because we have no shelves on which to place them yet.  And… we kind of ran out of steam after painting, so there are some things we just plain haven’t unpacked yet.  Even though it’s all more-or-less tidy, it still feels cluttered.  I’ve been sort of waiting for a chance to sit down with Jason and find homes for everything, but I think I’m just going to have to do it myself and tell him where crap is.

I just want money, so I can buy a home for everything, be it a shelf, box, basket, or bin.  The easier it is to have everything organized, the more likely I am to keep up with it.

Anyway, moving on to last night’s WOD.

It sucked and I hated it.

  • 500m row
  • 25 burpees
  • Max rep pullups
  • 3 rounds, starting ten minutes apart; the faster you finish, the more rest you get.

I think Tuesday’s hammering took a lot of wind out of my sails.  Neither my head nor my heart was in it.  Right from the beginning, I was struggling with the row, which normally doesn’t give me too much trouble.  I think my first row was in the 2:12 neighborhood, which is pretty slow for me.  I rarely have any problem going sub-2:00 on a 500m row, especially right out of the gate.  I just couldn’t find any energy or drive.  Then on to 25 burpees… slooooowly managed that.  And then my max-rep pullups were just stupid.  I had decided early that I wanted to try banded pullups.  I guess I’m still not quite strong enough for that.  I managed two.  TWO PULLUPS.  I decided to hold myself up on the second one as long as I could, since I wasn’t going to get any more reps in.  I think I held it for, like, three seconds.  The only good part about the whole workout was my final row, which I did in exactly 2:00, but I was so wiped after that, I had to take a pretty serious breather before buckling down on my (s.l.o.w.) burpees.  Once again, I was the last one working out.  I was so dejected that I didn’t even bother writing down my times or reps.  I was so wiped, and so sweaty, when we got home that I had a hell of a time getting my bra off.

I don’t know what was going on with me.  I thought I had eaten enough lunch, but maybe not.  I even took a nap yesterday afternoon, and I almost never nap.  Slept fine last night, although I had some weird-ass dreams.  In one, I was living at my parents’ house, and I looked out the window and saw some guy in a Tyvek hazmat-type suit and respirator dousing my garden and herb beds with weed killer, and I marched out there and gave him the what-for and he called me a hippie.

Anyway, now it’s chucking down rain, Tegan is sleeping with her eyes creepily half-open and rolling around, and I need to stop avoiding housework.

A Big Old Blogging Smorgasbord

My brain is all over the place today.  Maybe it’s because the weather has all of a sudden changed from “glorious” to “intestinally humid” and the windows are closed up tight for the first time in like two weeks.  Maybe it’s because Tegan still hasn’t really developed a potty routine (translation: her morning poop doesn’t happen til she’s damn well good and ready, which might be 7:45 or it might be 10) and starting Monday, she’s going to be alone for almost 9 hours every day, and I’m afraid it’s going to completely derail everything.  Most likely it’s because Jason’s in that agonizing post-job-interview limbo, and the interview happened to go well, so we’re both kind of on edge waiting for a response.  Either way, I feel scattered.

I’m also officially tired of our living room, which is the room where I’ve spent the vast majority of my time this summer.  It’s not that it’s such a bad room, really.  It’s large and light and really close to the kitchen, where the food is.  It’s just so drab.  When we were house-shopping, our criteria were pretty simple.

  • Rural location.
  • Smallish house, largeish property.
  • Not a complete dump.

That’s about it, really.  Sure, we had a list of Wants: hardwood floors, one story, fireplace, gas stove, efficient windows… and wouldn’t you believe it, we got all those things.  Yeah, we had to paint, and there are a lot of personalizing projects we still want to do, but it was absolutely move-in ready.  Our house does have one carpeted room… and it’s the living room.

The living room is a newer addition to the house, which is a very plain, typical, early-1960s ranch.  Seriously, this room is big.  I haven’t measured, but an eyeballing puts it at about 15’x25′.  It’s big… and brown.  The walls are fake-wood paneling, the trim is “natural” (which also means fake wood), the carpet is a speckled tan semi-shag, and the granite fireplace surround is mottled beige/brown/orange.  The curtains are dark brown.  And our couch just happens to be beige and brown.

I’m not exactly a monochrome sort of person.  Truthfully, I’m not even really a “neutral” sort of person.  The couch I had before Jason and I combined households was robin’s-egg-blue.  My side of the closet is a riot of color.  I consider grass green to be a neutral.  I’m also not really a matchy sort of person.  My decorating sensibility leans toward the “flea market fabulous” side of things.  This is not to be confused with “shabby chic.”  Shabby Chic tends to incorporate things like peeling paint, old suitcases, and ratty linens.  Chipped, faded kitchen chairs?  Yes, lead paint is a very nice seasoning on your scrambled eggs.  Old steamer chest as a coffee table?  No better place to store extra blankets than with a colony of silverfish!  Ratty old linens?  Absolutely I would like to sleep in a mouse toilet.  I like mismatched things, as long as there’s still a cohesive feeling.  Non-matching but coordinating, I guess.  Old wooden chairs make me happy, but REPAINT THE STUPID THINGS.  Have a funky coffee table… just not a dry-rotted leather steamer chest.  Those things make my skin crawl.  AND DON’T SLEEP IN SOMEONE ELSE’S HUNDRED-YEAR-OLD BEDDING.  If it was my own family’s heirloom, that’s one thing.  At least I know nobody died under that quilt.

So anyway… maybe next summer we can afford to re-do the living room.

  • New carpet.  Something not shag, speckly, or brown.  There’s a really nice warm gray color in the mottling of the fireplace surround; that would be nice.
  • DRYWALL.  I Do Not Like the fake wood paneling.  I would be okay with just painting it, except it was not especially well-done, and it’s all wavy and saggy.  I suspect (hope) there is already unfinished drywall behind the paneling; if that’s the case, it won’t be too much of a nightmare to finish it.  If not… Jason’s dad is good with crap like that, and enjoys it, so he can help us.  And it would be painted a COLOR.  NOT TAN.
  • Built-ins next to the fireplace.  It’s really a very pretty fireplace, but it’s just kind of stuck in the middle of one wall.  Built-ins will give it a little more character, and will give us a little more much-needed storage.
  • Take down the circa-1984 ceiling fan.  Set it on fire.
  • New furniture?  Maybe?  Aside from being uncomfortable, our current sofa is now sporting a large, lovely hole in one cushion (THANKS, TEGAN).

Combined with the outdoor projects I’d like to do for next year (deck railing, minor landscaping, major garden extension)… I’m never going to want to leave the house.  I already never want to leave the house… this could be trouble.

Moving on.  Last night’s WOD!  As I mentioned, yesterday was one coach’s birthday, and I suspected the other coach would program a 42-themed WOD for that.  I wasn’t wrong.

Warm-up with 3×3 heavy squat cleans.  We were to start with a weight we could do a lot, because we’d come back to that for the WOD.  My weights were 65# (not too hard), 75# (a little hard), and 85# (fuck you, squat cleans).

And then the metcon:

  • 10 squat cleans
  • 42 double-unders
  • 10 push press
  • 42 hand-release pushups
  • 10 hang cleans
  • 42 DU
  • 10 front squats
  • 42 HRPU

I was really, really okay with this.  Going along at a good clip, breaking my lifts into sets of 5, doing 84 singles instead of DU… and then I hit the first set of pushups and came to a screeching halt.

I am weak on pushups.  Just terrible.  Even just normal, non-hand-release pushups, I can only string together a set of 6 or 7.  On my knees.  Hand-release?  Let’s make that 3 or 4.  It’s embarrassing and infuriating.  There were people finished with the whole damn thing before I finished my first set of pushups.  Coach was walking by during my hang clean mid-set break, and I double-checked with her to make sure Other Coach wasn’t actually turning 20.  She just laughed, so I guess that was a no.  And then I got all sweaty in my eyes, and I couldn’t read the board, so I accidentally started doing squat cleans again instead of front squats, so I wasted a bunch of time and energy on that.

Aaaand then I had the stupid pushups again.  By that point, I was so sweaty I had to move to the carpet to keep from sliding backwards on every rep.  I was definitely the last one still working.  Everyone else was wiping up sweat puddles, breaking down bars, hanging up ropes, and doing awesome fun things like sitting still, drinking water, and breathing.  And I still had half my reps to go.  Coach came over and sat on the tire next to me, talking me through it.  She wasn’t yelling or pushing, which is good, because I was getting mad.  My last ten or so reps were not hand-release, and I gave no shits.  My very last rep was extremely close to being a downward dog.  It was just ugly.  But again–no shits.  All I cared about was getting off the floor.

It took me 17 minutes and 32 seconds to do what most people did in less than ten minutes.  It was not fun.  And yet I’m looking forward to going back tonight.  Such is the beauty of CrossFit… no matter how much it sucks, I came out the other side, and I can be proud of that.  And maybe the next time will be better.  Because it probably won’t contain pushups.

If it does contain pushups… I can’t promise I won’t just walk home.

Endure the sprints

Oh, the 5:30am on Friday.  There’s nothing quite like working out in your sleep.  Also, I would like to point out that by now, it is clearly obvious that we are moving away from the summer solstice.  Around then, it was nearly dawn when we set out for the box at 5:15.  Now, though, it is still completely and totally dark, and it starts to get light once we’ve warmed up and we’re starting the WOD.  By winter, it won’t even be light by the time we leave the box at 6:30.  But that’s still a long way off, so I’ll not worry about it yet.  (Actually, I won’t worry about it at all, because I kind of like winter.  I’M A KNITTER.  I HAVE WOOL.  But I realize most people think there’s something wrong with me when I say that, so I mostly keep it to myself.  Until now, because it’s on the internet for all to see.  MOVING ON.)

This morning’s WOD was a sort of sprint/endurance combination.  A “sprindurance,” if you will.

  • 100m row
  • 5 lateral burpee box jumps
  • 15 snatch
  • 800m run

3 RFT.  The snatch weights were fairly low; 75/53, and Coach also had some empty 45# bars lying out for scaling.

I’m not the worst rower in our box.  In fact, in my heat, I was the first one off the rower.  Burpees pulled me back down to the middle of the pack… and then the snatch did its usual “Imma-kill-you” thing.  I can snatch 53 pounds, no problem.  Fifteen times, though?  Huh.  Not quickly.  Coach actually said I could scale with front squats, if I wanted to; I was really sore in the traps and shoulders this morning, and whining about it.  But no, I was just being a giant baby.  I wasn’t that sore.  So I went ahead and snatched.  Slowly.

The run, though… this summer has been delightfully cool, almost the whole time.  We’ve had, like, two really hot weeks, but mostly it’s been below normal–way below normal, in some cases.  My garden does not approve, and my tomatoes especially hate it, but CrossFit?  CrossFit has been quite nice.  Oh yeah, today’s run.  I felt like a damn gazelle.  The air was cool and dry and slightly breezy, and in the dark it’s easy to feel like you’re running way faster than you really are.  I was out there running all by myself (except for the last lap, when Jason passed me), and I just loved it.  I really don’t like running all that much, but when everything falls into place and the conditions are perfect… I like that.

Anyway, now I’m home, the house is relatively tidy, and my in-laws just left.  They had a little two-seat porch glider they didn’t have room for anymore, so they gave it to us.  They also brought us a couple things from their garden.  So now I think I will curl up with a good book and listen to the wind for the rest of the day.  Maybe with some tea.  It’s that kind of day.

One more week of freedom, then it’s hellooooo theatre season!

Two Cleans and a Jerk

I cannot wait to get back to work.  There are so many projects we want to do before cold weather strikes, and so little money with which to do them.  Unfortunately, when I return to work we’ll have the money (honey), but we won’t have the time.  Almost all of them are 2-person projects, and those that can be one-person projects are way more fun with company.  A small selection of our projects, in no particular order:

  • We need a railing around our deck, the steps need to be relocated to a less-stupid location, it needs to be stained and sealed, and I’d like some benches.  And planters.  And bird feeders.
  • Our living room has two exterior doors, one swinging and one sliding, and no screen doors.  I want screens for both.
  • The previous owners did a terrible job painting the front door.  It’s black and peeling and not even remotely attractive.  It needs repainted, something bright and happy.
  • Both spare bedrooms need painted and sorted out.  One is a guest room, the other is a craft/art/website-building studio-like room.
  • I want shelves in the kitchen.  And something more attractive than paper grocery sacks to hold the recycling.
  • I wouldn’t even put a pigeon in our henhouse right now, let alone a chicken.  It needs work.
  • More shelves in the laundry room.
  • More shelves in all the closets, really.
  • And on an on.  There’s a lot we want to do.

It’s a little weird.  We’ve rented for so long, it’s strange to think that if there’s something we don’t like about the house, we can just change it.  We don’t have to discuss anything with anyone.  We don’t even have neighbors to bother.  If I want to lay out a bed of pansies in the shape of a giant tallywhacker, I can do exactly that.  I’m not going to, but the point is I could.

Anyway.  Last night’s WOD was a good one.  Jason and I were hoping for some good old-fashioned lifting after Tuesday’s marathon (and Saturday’s, in my case.  I’m still a little bitter about that).  And we got what we wanted!  Coach had planned a nice, simple clean & jerk complex.

Every other minute for ten minutes, do 2 cleans and 1 split jerk, three times.  Bump up the weight a bit, and do the same thing, with 2 complexes every other minute.  Bump up the weight again.  Same thing, one complex per minute.  On the lighter-weight reps, the emphasis was on good, clean form, so that by the time we got to the heavy weight, we had some muscle memory to work with.  We spent more than the usual amount of time before the WOD, practicing with PVC and getting feedback.

We were working out with partners, trading off minutes, and my partner and I were pretty well-matched.  We started with a 63# bar, which both of us found pretty easy.  Moved up to a 73# bar for the 2-complex rounds; I still felt like that was pretty easy, but my partner was starting to fatigue.  For the final weight, I knew I wanted to do 83#.  WOD Buddy got one clean, but couldn’t get the bar up again.  So we switched out the plates to make a 78# bar between our sets, and she got all her reps in.  I kind of like those quick changes when the clock is running.  Makes me feel like I’m in an Indy car pit crew.

I will say, my ass was still mighty sore from all of Monday’s deadlifts, so each and every one of those cleans was like a kick in the pants.  And today my shoulders and traps are very, very sore.  But you know what, I hit every rep, and each one was solid.  And my jerk PR is 88#, and I still was able to put 83# over my head five times.  And it was only a little scary.  So I was very happy with how I did.

Really glad today is a rest day, though.

We all got burpees

Yesterday was a pretty ouchie one.  Even though those 135# deadlifts (THIRTY OF THEM!) weren’t too terribly awful, they still made my butt really, really sore.  I’m sure the guys at the tire store were wondering what the hell was wrong with me when I hobbled in.

Yeah, I finally got new tires.  They were sorely needed–my left front tire had a slow leak that wasn’t so slow anymore, and while my old tires weren’t bald, exactly, they were getting rather thin on top.  Driving in the rain was starting to get a little nerve-wracking.  I hate buying shoes for my car even more than I hate buying shoes for myself, and that is a lot of hate.  But it beats the alternative of sliding off the road in spectacular fashion and dying in a fiery explosion when I hit a tree.  I’ll be back at work and getting a regular paycheck again in less than two weeks, so it’s okay.

So I went into last night’s WOD with my butt having been soundly kicked, only to find out I was going to be kicked all over, mostly in the lung parts.

  • 20 situps
  • 10 burpees
  • 10 pullups’
  • 20 KB swings

Four rounds.  Three minutes’ rest.  Three rounds.  Two minutes’ rest.  Two rounds.  One minutes’ rest.  One round for good measure.

If you’re counting, and I most definitely was, that is ten rounds.  Two hundred situps and swings.  One hundred burpees and pullups.

I’ve done a hundred burpees in a WOD before.  When we did our Memorial Day Murph, about 70-some people showed up, and we only have space for about half that on our pullup stations.  So those of us who sucked at pullups subbed another movement.  I chose burpees.  Two months later I’m still not sure I chose wisely.

The first four rounds were physically the hardest, but I think the mentally-hardest was the second round in the 2-round round (right round baby right round like a record baby right round round round).  I was completely wiped, and I had one more bit of rest coming up, but I knew after that one short minute I had to keep working.  Only for one round, yes, but still.  That round had ten burpees, just like the other nine.

And as expected, it took for-freaking-ever.  Those damn burpees dragged me down so hard.  My final time was 42:20-something.  When I finished, I staggered over to the rope-climb mats and collapsed in a giant heap, and Coach just LAUGHED at me.  (Granted, it might have been a somewhat overly-dramatic heap, but I have a theatre degree so I feel I’m entitled to a little drama now and then.)

And I’m still being somewhat dramatic.  Seriously, the WOD wasn’t that bad.  Yes, it hurt, yes, I wanted to die, yes, I cursed all those evenings I spent sitting on my ass and stuffing my face with Cheez-Its and Hot Pockets, but at no point did I consider quitting.  And I was super-duper proud of myself for swinging a 35# KB for every rep.

Yesterday morning, my butt was sore; this morning, my everything-else is sore.  But it’s the kind of sore I can be proud of.  And it’s gray and drizzly and feels more like October than the last day of July (HAPPY BIRTHDAY, HARRY POTTER!), and I’m at home with coffee and puppy and kitty and knitting and a bunch of fat-ass doves who keep trying and failing to sit on the bird feeder.  It’s pretty awesome.

I’m a broke-azz mo-fo, but my life is not too shabby.

I miss CrossFit.

More specifically, I miss:

  • the box.
  • all my friends at the box.
  • the giant fan that sounds like the space shuttle taking off.
  • working out to Eminem and Linkin Park, both of whom I hate in real life.
  • picking up heavy things.
  • putting them down again.
  • running next to the highway, my sweaty, beet-red face on display for half the county to see.
  • playing Guess The WOD in the car with Jason on the way to the box.
  • burpees.
  • (just kidding.)

This being-injured shit can go straight to hell.  I feel like I’ve lost everything I’ve gained since joining, and it’s compounded by the fact that when I do go back (tentatively Friday, unless my rib discontinues the steady improvement it’s made), I will still need to take a little easy with the heavy lifts.  I haven’t been able to work out in a week now, and it feels like a month.

Interestingly, I’m not worried about getting back into the habit of working out.  In the past, when I’ve had to take time off for injury or illness, it was really difficult to get back up on that pony; in fact it usually involved a handful of false starts and, in the case of running, scheduling a race to light a fire under my ass.  (I am extremely motivated by money; if I’ve spent the money on a race, no way in hell am I going to waste it.  The only time I did, it was because I buggered up my ankle during the training process and I couldn’t sell my bib.  70 bucks and a lot of enthusiasm down the crapper on that one.)  But from the beginning, I was totally excited about CrossFit.   As far as exercise goes, that’s a novel feeling.  Exercise has always been an unpleasant chore that makes me sweaty, hungry, sore, and tired.  But CrossFit is all of those things, plus fun and exhilarating!  After the intro, I couldn’t wait to go back to start the real stuff–there’s no ramp-up program at our box; the coaches just have newbies do super-scaled versions of the main WOD.  We hit the ground running, 5 days a week.


Really though, my ribs feel a whole lot better than they did a few days ago, and I’m happy to be able to turn in my chair to tell Tegan to leave the cat alone without feeling like I’m being stabbed.

And I have gotten a lot of knitting done this week.  I really don’t know if my little designing venture will earn me any money, but I sure hope so!  (Mama needs a new computer.)

In Which Pickle Gets Sassed

Pickle wants to nap.  Tegan wants to play.

Pickle wants to nap. Tegan wants to play.

Pickle REALLY wants to nap.  Tegan REALLY wants to play.

Pickle REALLY wants to nap. Tegan REALLY wants to play.

"Mama, she won't play."

“Mama, she won’t play.”

"I hate my life."

“I hate my life.”

A Hostile Intercostal

I did not make it to CrossFit on Saturday.  My back was still bugging me, and I thought it best to continue taking time off.

So what better way to rest my back than to go to Turkey Run State Park, meet up and have a cookout with Jason’s family, and go for a really, really muddy hike?

When I say “Jason’s entire family,” that’s no small thing.  He’s the oldest of six boys.  All of his brothers are married or seriously dating, and all but one have at least one kid.  So with parents, brothers, sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews, and one aunt and uncle, there were 21 of us (22 if you count the puppy).  We were all gathered because Jason’s third-youngest brother and family are leaving on a 16-month mission trip to South Africa very soon, and the in-laws wanted to get everyone together one more time before they take off.

It was also the oldest niece’s 11th birthday, so we had a good time!  Everyone was feeling pretty good, including ready-to-explode Pregnant Sister-in-law, who has had a pretty rough time and is ready for the baby to born, like, yesterday.

My ability to hold it together in such a large group is pretty limited, though (what up, INFJs), so it wasn’t much time at all before I needed to get out for a hike.  At first we thought it was just going to be Jason, me, Tegan, one brother, and his wife (they’re the ones we hang out with the most, so they don’t really drain me).  Then we realize another brother and wife are following along.  And then we realize… the is coming with us.  I just about had a meltdown before we even got to the trailhead, but I kept it together.

But then… we got out near the trails, and even though I could hear the strains of hundreds of park visitors through the ravines and trees, my blood pressure sloooowly started to dissipate and I began to enjoy the wonder that is an Indiana state park in July.

My hunny and my puppy.  D'awww.

My hunny and my puppy. D’awww.

On the banks of Sugar Creek.

On the banks of Sugar Creek.

World-Famous Indiana Limestone in the background.

World-Famous Indiana Limestone in the background.

And the mud begins...

And the mud begins…

Corgi Puppy + Stairs = Jason gets to carry her.

Corgi Puppy + Stairs = Jason gets to carry her.

This is the last time we were clean that day.

This is the last time we were clean that day.

After that, the trail became a little treacherous.  It would have been okay if we didn’t have an excited puppy, an expensive camera, and half the family chattering away while I tried to concentrate on not sliding into a ravine, but… that’s what we had.  It had just rained that morning, so everything was slick and wet, and even if it hadn’t rained, most of the trail was narrow, rocky, mossy, and covered with decomposing woodland material.  Jason and I always hike in our Vibram Five Fingers and while they grip like crazy, you can’t really expect anything to grip that kind of surface without fail.  I was starting to get a little nervous, and when we got boxed into a canyon with some lost-looking strangers, Jason and I decided it was in our best interests to let the family go on without us while we backtracked to an easier trail.  They had already gone up the side of the canyon and carried on, so we sent our neice ahead to let everyone know and we turned back.

After we got back to the gravel section of the trail, it was just a smooth, flat, wide path atop the cliffs along the creek.  There wasn’t much to look at, but honestly, we didn’t mind–Tegan is still so little, and we want her to like hiking.  She was being a really good girl–she happily greeted all the other people we met, she stayed on the path without trying to go diving into the underbrush, and she wasn’t prissy about getting dirty.

Sugar Creek, canoes, kayaks, and tubes.  Summer in Indiana.

Sugar Creek, canoes, kayaks, and tubes. Summer in Indiana.

Jason and Tegan, from the front this time.  She still wants to GOGOGO, even after at least three miles.

Jason and Tegan, from the front this time. She still wants to GOGOGO, even after at least three miles.

But given a few minutes, she passed out cold.  LOOK AT HOW DIRTY SHE IS.

But given a few minutes back at the shelter house, she passed out cold. LOOK AT HOW DIRTY SHE IS.

Seriously, disgustingly filthy.

Seriously, disgustingly filthy.  She smelled like a rotten log, too.

By the time we finished our hike/walk, Tegan looked like a homeless guy’s beard.  Her belly and feathers were just a mess of black, gritty dreadlocks, and her white bib was gray all the way up to her chin.  Thankfully she’s really good about bathtime; she got a good scrubbing when we got home and her white parts shined right up.  And she slept really, really well Saturday night.  But you know what, she is going to be one awesome hiking buddy when she grows up.  I can’t wait to take her camping next summer!

Yesterday.  I was still sore.  I began to think maybe it wasn’t muscular at all… maybe I was having some kind of weird, symptom-free kidney failure (Jason’s paranoia is rubbing off on me).  I’ve never had a pulled muscle hurt for quite this long.  So I decided today I’d go to the doctor.

Got up this morning… my Primary Care Physician can’t get me in until THE END OF AUGUST, because I guess when your HMO forces you to choose a doctor off a list and you can only ever go to that doctor unless it’s an emergency or a specific referral, and they put her name on your insurance card, you’re still technically a “new patient” after three years if you never actually schedule an appointment of any sort.  THIS IS MY PUNISHMENT FOR BEING HEALTHY.  I’m sorry I haven’t needed her services.  I guess I should have gone in for a baseline physical, but ugh… paying someone to tell me “Yep, you’re in great shape, keep up the good work”?  Grrrrrrrr.

So I went to urgent care.  And apparently I have pulled an intercostal muscle, which is between ribs (which is EXACTLY WHAT I ORIGINALLY THOUGHT I had done).  The reason it hadn’t gotten any better is because they typically take longer to heal; they never get a break, what with breathing and bending and being a living human being.  So the treatment is NSAIDs (they wrote a prescription, but I don’t need prescription-strength), ice, and rest.  The doctor also provided a script for muscle relaxers, but that’s completely unnecessary; it’s not interfering with sleep.  So I’m not going to have that one filled either.

So I paid someone to tell me to do exactly what I’ve been doing, just wait a little longer, and go back to CrossFit when I feel able.

I hate health care.