fitness and nutrition, hustle

Getting My Butt in Gear

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Just a few more days until half marathon time. It’s all about fine tuning and staying as injury-free as possible.

As I make my packing list, here are the most important things I’ll be sporting.

My new AirPods with my “run run run” playlist is probably my most important accessory. A birthday splurge.  I am all about the tunes while I’m running to keep me motivated (and distracted)…I’m lost without music.   I’ve been adding and scrubbing songs for months now.  From Earth, Wind, and Fire to Miranda Lambert, Elton John to Maren Morris, Madonna to Stevie Wonder and everything in between…I think I have about 7 hours of music on my playlist.  Hopefully I’m a little quicker than that!

Paired with my Apple Watch, another birthday gift that I’ve quickly grown fond of.  I love how it connects me to other members of my running group and keeps track of my mileage and pace.  I’m still figuring out all that it can do, but I’m enjoying it so far.

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I’ll admit, I’m building my outfit around the shorts.  I have tried several different brands, but I’m going with one of my pairs of Constantly Varied Gear shorts.  I am a 5″ inseam girl.  I love the comfort of them and don’t forget another key element – POCKETS!

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But which pair to wear?  I thought I would wear my colorful unicorns or mermaids, with my Sunday Runday tank top from Miles and Pace.  But, then I feel pretty unstoppable in my Thunderstruck pair with my Strong Like Bull tank.  No matter which pair, it will be CVG shorts, a tank top, and a coordinating V Sport Bra.  (In a recent update, my thighs  started leaning out in the last month, so it will be a size down plain black pair of CVGs!)

Finally, I have a little belt that I bought years ago from amazon to carry along the essentials – ID, gels, pain reliever.  It has been with me since my very first Peachtree Road Race 4 years ago. Wouldn’t feel like a long race without it.

What a difference from that day four years ago, July 2015. I’ve covered many miles since then.  I’ve shed many pounds and even some bad habits along the way.  I’ve picked up some new ways of thinking (and ok, a few wrinkles).  One thing is sure…it is a long haul, and one I still work at every day.    I don’t really believe in “before and after” shots, but there are definitely differences along the path that are worth reflecting on.

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I have made many changes between now and then.  But I still feel the excitement in this picture…this is a girl getting ready to take on the Peachtree Road Race 10K for the first time!  She is nervous, excited, and joyful all at once.

Here I am again in October 2019, facing something new with a tangle of criss-crossed feelings. The day is nearly here! So exciting! Can’t wait for this time with my running group, finally reaching the start line, when we can make our goals happen.  Pictures, giggles, and fun to follow.  And then, what will the next goal be?

 

 

 

fitness and nutrition, hustle

Rock N’ Roll Time

The final countdown is on. Travel plans are made. We are ready to lace up and run in less than 30 days.

Prep time is almost over. Did we do enough? Are we ready?

Took me several weeks to get cozy in my shoes. Finally got music working on my Apple Watch and AirPods. Still not where I need to be on weekly miles but I am putting in effort.

Working on sprints and intervals each week as the months turn into weeks and weeks turn into days before the big event.

Still trying to find the perfect running pants or shorts. This is what’s making me the most nervous right now. I don’t want to be chafed, period. Time to start biting the nails. Oh yeah, I almost forgot, it’s also time for the CrossFit Open amid marathon training. Why do I always double stack my trainings? Will I be able to handle both?

As the days wind down, the cold feet set in. A few of my running mates are opting to downgrade to the 5k leg vs. 13.1 miles. Each have their own reasons, as I have mine for pushing through. I don’t need to be the best. I don’t need to be the fastest. I just need to get it done. Part of my life lessons to myself come from reaching beyond my comfort zone. Pushing the limits so to speak. If I’m healthy on race day, I’m putting my best foot forward one step at a time. There was a time in my life where a 5k seemed impossible, and I did not only one, but many.

Now is the time for me to see if I can push the mileage up to 13.1 and earn that sticker.

Wish me luck!

fitness and nutrition, friendship, hustle

A Runner’s Diary of Sorts

Training diary for August is below. How am I doing?

CrossFit 6 days a week. No excuses. Well maybe I can take a rest day here and there because life is crazy in general and of course I added running a half marathon into the mix. Always enjoy a sweat sesh with my writing partner, aka Chick 2. I guess lynx barbell gave us a shout out recently…

Extra post-WOD mileage: here and there but I have been so busy that I have had to trim my extra bonus gym time which is where I would get those miles in. Sigh.

Air runner work: did some intervals this month but it’s been extra hot out making two-a-days at the gym pretty dreadful. As you can see, I sent a special # 1 sign to the person egging me on. No photo creds needed. They know who they are.

Weekly group sessions: Sunday Rundays with the girls. It’s tough waking up on Sunday but I do it and it’s great to have likeminded people around to support my growth and push me.

Healthy eating: working on this. Added some 1st Phorm protein to my days to see how that goes in the coming weeks.

Proper hydration: trying to elevate my game here. Trying to lay off the “Ice” brand of water and dial into the more pure form of water! Wish me luck.

Attire: alternating the Nike Air Pegasus and Zoom. So far I like the Pegasus the best. Keeping chafing at bay which is always a good thing. Haven’t found the perfect bottoms for race day yet but I’m trying. I upgraded to the newer Apple Watch Version 4 so I can run without my phone, in hopes music will let me go on for miles and miles. This is what my home screen looks like:

Random rants in the month from the peanut gallery:

You are not running enough. One day day a week won’t cut it. Add in this and that.

You’ve got to build up your distance. Work on your breathing. If you stop and walk do five push ups. Maybe that will make you want to keep running😂.

Guess what people? I’m training. I doing the best I can and I don’t expect to win. I do expect to finish and I’m working hard to hit the goal time I set for myself.

I might fail. I clearly won’t know that until I try to do it. How many people won’t ever sign up because it’s hard? Many. And for that reason alone I am already proud of my efforts.

Until next time…

 

fitness and nutrition, hustle

Beth’s Training Track

I hear the whistle in the distance.  Faint, but getting louder, coming closer.

Half marathon. Ready or not, it’s coming.

Getting ready is the challenge right now.  Training plans, equipment questions, all of it – but mainly, finding the time to run.

I love CrossFit.  We all know this.  With work and home and complicated lives, I can’t really give much more time to fitness than I already do.  So, giving up a little bit of CrossFit time to spend more time running has to happen. It’s a temporary tradeoff in pursuit of a big goal.

One good thing about running is I can do it pretty much anywhere.  Or, it’s at least more flexible than getting to my gym at a certain time. Even still, life is hectic. It takes some creativity to fit it in.

Here’s an example of what that looks like:

In a recent 10-day span I did 4 training runs, 4 wildly different places.

First, Philadelphia.  I flew in late one Friday night, on the way to my family reunion.  Searching online for tracks and trails near my hotel, I saw a posting about the Rocky Steps.  So, I mapped a route along the Schuylkill River to the Philadelphia Museum of Art.  4 miles early on a Saturday morning including the Rocky Steps (twice!).  Done. Then, off to the Reading Terminal Market for some local deliciousness.

Next, Spring Lake, NJ.  Gorgeous run on their 2-mile boardwalk (each way, for a total of four miles) just along the Atlantic, first thing in the morning with many other runners.  I looked a little out of place in my Panama City Beach shirt (air conditioned all the way up the back), but why not?  “Beach, Please” came true! Then, off to family time.

Back home later in the week, a five-mile after work slog at a park near my home.  Late afternoon, on a route that usually suits me well but this time it was awful.  I blame the time of day and the heat, but discouraging in spite of the nice lake view.

Finally, a two-mile run after a Saturday morning strength workout at the gym.  Five long hilly laps in the parking lot.  Not the most impressive scenery but the sun gave me a smile as I turned to head down the hill. Had to get it in somehow. Not every run can be beachside.

Four runs, one busy ten-day span. My training weeks will each look different.  It’s an adaptation of my summer vacation workout routines.  Making it work, however I can, whatever is needed, wherever I am.  The train continues to get closer!  I am determined to be as ready as I can be.

hustle, working women

A CEO, a Donkey and an Employee

What do the three above have in common?

Each can be considered a jackass at one point or another! Yep folks, you got it. A jackass!

Not to get off topic, but I start a post sometimes and circle back to finish it up. It could be hours later, days later or even weeks later. But I could not ignore this photo and blurb that I randomly got today….

Look closely folks. My quote said “look, somebody lost their ass on the side of the road.” Now this became a sign for me to finish this post.

Who would have guessed it? I am a jackass a lot of days as the CEO of one of my companies. I know perception isn’t often reality but for some employees their perception can be that I am an ass. I am pretty sure at least one employee has made that claim and I am sure others may in the future. I get it. It’s okay. As the CEO I sometimes have to make unpopular decisions. I sometimes have to offer counseling to employees and they may not like it. It comes with the territory of being the CEO. Taking charge of any and all situations. Most think the view from the top is the best but many don’t see the turbulence a CEO faces on the daily.

In any company, the CEO takes risks. There could be big rewards but there could also be big failures. I’ve experienced both. That’s why so many on the bottom don’t fancy the CEO at the top. Why? Because it’s a seat they will never have! Plain and simple.

Oddly enough, I wear multiple hats in a day, week or month. This gives me the unique vantage point of being an employee some days. Under a different set of circumstances, but an employee nonetheless. An employee, by definition, does a job, collects a fair wage, and completes work assigned or agreed upon for said pay. And guess what? I could actually be a jackass there, too. How could this be true? Hypothetically, I could be the manager nobody likes or respects. I could be the poor performing employee who complains about everything and everyone. I could even be the office gossip.

Whatever my role in those four walls, I am bound to be a jackass to somebody. Is it perception or reality? Maybe I’m a pay tier ahead of the one who thinks I am a jackass. Maybe I make them do more work when I am on vacation. Maybe the boss favors me more. The list could go on and on. I’m sure you get my point. Jackassery can appear amongst the rank and file as well as leadership in any company. Clearly I am using myself as an example to prove a point, but I tell you, I lived all these scenarios at one point in time or another during my professional career.

At the end of the day, a CEO has a job. Their job is to drive the vision of the company and take the company to the next level. The employees are the ones who push the paper, press the keys and provide service to clients. They are the hamsters who run the hamster wheels in whatever industry you work.

Everyone has a role in an organization. Everyone has a lane. At any given time, one of those people in the mix can be a jackass. Do you take it personally and dwell on it? No, because you can’t control it. You move on. You rise another day. You grind another day. You make new decisions as the CEO or you work hard as an employee.

If you zoom in on the jackass picture, who is the jackass? The real ass, as in the donkey? The person who created the donkey in the road mess at rush hour? Or the person driving the car that thought it was a good idea to get out of the truck and…

Well, a picture is worth a thousand words they say. I don’t have a thousand here in this post but I hope I gave you some perspective today. The grass isn’t always greener on the other side of the street, even if it looks that way at a quick glance. Not everyone is meant to be the CEO even if one makes it look easy.

Not sure how I got on the jackass theme but it was a random rant or thought that I jotted down and figured I’d publish it at some point in time. Find your path. Follow it. Don’t worry about others perception of you or your jackassery.

Again, I know plenty of folks who judge me for my choices but at the end of the day they are my choices and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Now seems like the perfect time to post this because I am a jackass. I will be one today, tomorrow and in the future. No doubt about it. I bet you have been a jackass at some point too.

Do you know a jackass?

Bonus tidbit: if you don’t want to be known as a jackass, adjust your attitude and train your mind to respect others in their roles because you never know what another person is going through or what they have on their plate. Jackassery is not just a debate, it’s a movement.

Now I am ready for a game of pin the tail on the donkey. How I love childhood memories that reflect into adulthood. Have a donkeylicious day folks!

coaching, hustle

Purpose

 

Recently I was in a position where I needed to review my purpose, my passions, my goals and my visions. That seems like a mouthful in and of itself, but it is healthy to want to review where you are, where you are going, and if you are even on the right path in life with the right people in your inner circle.

Often times, people become complacent. They expect things versus earning things.  They stand still and are content with the status quo. They complain when things don’t go their way. They make excuses. I beat to a different drum. I mean, I complain a lot. A lot about things that don’t really matter much at all. Sometimes I complain about the weather. Sometimes I complain about my daily workout. Neither really impacts my day or aura, but I feel the need to complain and I usually do it out loud! But when it comes down to where I am heading in life and who is along for the ride, I don’t really waver on my direction or drive.

My Personal Side: I have three kids in three different age brackets: Young adult, emerging adult and teenager. Each has different needs from me at these various stages but each is given love, guidance and motivation to reach their next milestone. As our kids age, we shift roles as they navigate life and turn into independent learners and become responsible. We can only hope for success for each of our kids.

My Professional Side: I am successful professionally. I earn a good living but am I 100% challenged or loving everything I do? The answer is NO. There are tasks like monthly sales tax reporting, payroll, and dealing with human capital issues that I am not so passionate about.  These repetitive tasks require my time and energy. Is the trade off there for work/life balance? I am still figuring this out. I would much prefer a tropical island with good weather year-round and no need to have a professional side. Maybe that is in my near future….

My Healthy Living: I commit to eating healthy 90% of the time, limiting alcohol consumption, and making time for me (self-care). I heard somebody call that high maintenance today, but no it isn’t high maintenance, rather it’s high quality! For me, committing to me and my positive mental balance helps my patience/stamina when it comes to difficult family challenges, work challenges, and of course difficult people.

My Value: I know my personal/professional value. I encourage you to know your value. Continue to evolve as a person which will grow your value over time. Never let anyone diminish your self-worth. Once you allow another to dictate your worth, you will begin to struggle in other areas. Remember you control your value, not others.

My Purpose Work: I do a lot of purpose work. Some people see the purpose work, while it’s hidden in plain sight to others. This is where I fill my tank. Not my gas tank, my emotional tank. My purpose work helps carry me through the challenging times of the hustle and bustle of carting kids around or managing mundane business tasks.

Did you know 2 Chicks donates books each year to kids in need? Improving literacy one child at a time is part of our purpose work. Should you want to help sponsor a book drive in your area, contact us today.

Find your purpose. Live your purpose. Pass the passion of living your life with purpose to others. Many get caught up in their daily to-do lists and forget about laughing, smiling, and inspiring others. Offering hope, humor, smiles, and high-fives are all free. If only more people acted with kindness.

Signing off for now.  2 Chicks have a sizzling summer planned with lots of writing.  Watch our blog weekly for updates.

We are knee-deep in our #1095Days project which includes you, the audience!  Be sure to read, comment, and let us know what you like and don’t like.  You are part of our story!

dare to be different, hustle

Gifts or Shadows?

What are your gifts or shadows? I took my Enneagram test to verify what I already knew, but also to see how I could play better in the sandbox with others I collaborate with on the daily. I have taken many tests that are similar in nature. Most come out and highlight my dominant gifts or shadows, but this tool allowed me to look a little deeper. It was a good time to test myself. See what the report revealed. Have I changed? What personality types could I clash with? How can I improve?

I am a few years older since my last test of this sort. I am in a different space personally and professionally. I collaborate with a mixed group of individuals now. Timing was good to take a deeper look at me. Below are a few fun facts.

I am an 8 not a 10. Shocker alert! Shoot, I always thought I was a 10 across the board! Just kidding, there are no 10s. I wonder if that is by design? What is an 8 you might wonder?

Number 8 represents The Challenger:

The Powerful, Dominating Type:

Self-Confident, Decisive, Willful, and Confrontational

If you spend anytime around me in the workplace, in the gym, on the field or anywhere for that matter, you are sure to see the challenger in me. Heck, I even drive a fierce red Challenger on the daily. Talk about an irony. Guess I will keep that car since it mirrors my persona!

Next up in the rankings, the results show me as The Enthusiast:

The Busy, Variety-Seeking Type:

Spontaneous, Versatile, Distractible, and Scattered

For those who know me well, they often see me as a headlines girl. The one who looks for shiny objects in those long board meetings. The squirrely friend in the pack. I often enjoy chaos and note the scattered, smothered and covered hash browns you can order at Waffle House when painting a visual to others. #distractible

The next two types came in close so I will list them both below:

The Achiever:

The Success-Oriented, Efficient Type:

Adaptive, Excelling, Driven, and Image-Conscious

I am a driver, no joke there. Not too good at the passenger role but I play it from time to time to keep peace. I strive for success in every aspect of life and I note that a positive image is a must. I would say I ranked up high in the achiever category for good reasons.

The Loyalist:

The Committed, Security-Oriented Type:

Engaging, Responsible, Anxious, and Suspicious

I am disciplined and aim to keep humor in my life. I plan for rainy days and am always suspicious of other people’s motives. This is yet another trait that doesn’t surprise me.

I have the details printed, highlighted and cross-referenced to those I work with closely. I still have one individual to fine tune my traits with, yet that person has failed to complete their Enneagram test. It’s really doesn’t shock me. Some people find it difficult to self-evaluate. Looking in the mirror can be hard. Some don’t want to face the hard truth.

When one person challenges another to look in the mirror, the other can feel intimidated regardless of the real motivation. This is where perception and reality come into play. Your perception of me or my actions may not be the reality. Step out of your comfort zone today. Take an Enneagram Test. I don’t get paid to endorse this test, I just think it’s a good tool to review where you are and how you interact with others around you.

https://www.enneagraminstitute.com

It’s difficult to acknowledge you need to improve yourself but the reality is we all grow each day. Nobody is perfect. We never will be. We can only be the best version of ourselves and it takes time and energy to continue to develop that person. It really takes a lifetime.

At my ripe old age of 47, I can say I have grown by leaps and bounds. Some years the growth was slower than others, but when I recognize the opportunity to grow, I never hesitate. I seize the opportunity and go for it. Challenge yourself today in honor of my car (the red Challenger) and my Type 8, The Challenger. Remember nothing ventured, nothing gained. Will you grow a little today?