Keep on Keeping on

Getting into working out can be hard, and getting back into working out can be even harder. I’ve been working my way back into things alone since I sprained my shoulder a while back and school kept me inactive for longer than I should have been. It has been a windy road, and I don’t think it’ll straighten out any time soon.

During the time I was inactive, things were difficult. My mood was garbage, my body felt like garbage, and I lost some weight that I didn’t mean to lose. It’s hard to find the motivation to do anything when your body hurts and your mind is tired. But you have to do it. Once you do, it will get harder because you will be sore, but you have to keep going. I’m writing this now to remind myself that I need to keep going too. This battle is as much mental as it is physical, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be won.

I wish I could say that three weeks into doing jujitsu 2-3 times per week, I feel amazing, but I don’t. But I do feel better. I was afraid going to work out with a new group of people. But I think that actually helped me. Because of my shoulder injury, I had been avoiding certain exercises, but since I didn’t want these people to view me as particularly weak, I’m doing pushups with everyone else – just not as many of them. At first I was a little embarrassed. I still am very slightly embarrassed. The other day we were running to warm up and I felt terribly tired. When I looked at the clock, it told me that we were only two minutes into class.

After a few days of class I stopped pretending to be done doing warm up drills at the same time as everyone else. I’ve been making it a point not to cut corners regardless of who may see. I’ve always been worried that people will think less of me, but now I realize that if I don’t do what everyone else is doing plus some, I’ll never get through group workouts as easily as everyone else. The reason they can do it and I can’t is because they have continuously worked hard and I haven’t. And that is okay. I’m starting my hard work now.

After three weeks of doing jujitsu 2-3 times per week, I feel better. My body hurts significantly less and I’m back up to my normal weight. And with hard work, in a few more weeks I’ll be even better than I am today.

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Koi Print

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Initial Proof

Finally I’ve finished my first linoleum print. To be fair, it has been finished for maybe a month and a half, and I was just too lazy to do the actual print. To be honest, I can’t even remember when I actually did this. I am currently living with my parents, so I only work on these types of things when they aren’t home. It’s easier that way and I need my peace.

I was really happy with the idea when I started on this, and I still am. The scales were an absolute pain to do. I told myself never again. But I’m already over it and ready to do something else tedious! I don’t enjoy tedious work at all, but the end result is worth it. It has been a long while since I’ve created something I’m proud of, so I’m glad I did this print. It was actually my first time using linoleum, which was interesting as well. As a person with arthritis, I think that speedy-cut nonsense saves a lot of pain, but I’m still happy I gave this a shot.

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Finished Print

I actually made myself an online store, which you can find at dejesus.storenvy.com. If you want to support me through my current period of unemployment, get yourself something from my store! Really, the store is simply a way to keep myself motivated. I want to get better at the art thing, and the only way to do that is to practice! And so I shall practice.

Fitness Tracking Strife

The obsession with fitness trackers is very real. I feel it and I know others feel it as well. Otherwise Fitbit simply would not exist. For me its kind of strange, as I love data, but I also love privacy. Apparently I like data more than privacy though, as I am an apple watch owner and until recently I wore the watch every day.

Lately my fitness tracker has gotten on my nerves. I was on vacation for a week, and when I got back and turned on my watch, it told me that I did not meet my calorie burning goals at all last week and suggested I lower my goals. I was out walking every day, I rode a horse, and I rode a camel. I’m pretty sure I met my goals for general daily movement. But according to my watch, I didn’t move at all for the entire week.

Then this past week I’ve been going to jujitsu classes. Of course I can’t wear my watch to class, as that is dangerous and inconsiderate. I feel bad enough when I accidentally hit someone in the face with my open hand. If I hit them with a watch, I don’t think I could face them again. So I’ll be in jujitsu class for an hour or two and my watch is complaining that I need to stand. And when the weekend comes its going to complain that I didn’t exercise enough. But I did.

Don’t get me wrong; I love my apple watch. It tells me that someone texted me when I left my phone on the other side of the house, and it reminds me what comes up next on my schedule. I check it before I leave the house to find out whether or not I need a jacket. But fitness tracking simply doesn’t seem to be a good idea for me. It’s advertised as something for everyone, but I’m not so sure it is. If you’re a dancer it’s probably awesome, or if you run and do yoga. Fitness tracking devices have instilled in me this need to meet its prescribed goals, even though most of my exercise isn’t counted towards those goals. It also makes me feel like walking my dog counts as exercise when walking is never going to be enough for me.

So for now I’m taking a break from the tracker. I’ll use it to run, but not for regular daily use. It isn’t important that I didn’t meet the goals of my watch. I feel that perfect amount of soreness that reminds me that yesterday I worked hard, and next time I’ll work harder.

In Search of Jujitsu

Last week I had been on vacation, but now that I’m back I have been diligently working to find a place to train jujitsu. Turns out there is nothing super close to me. I actually considered going to Karate classes instead, but I couldn’t do it. It’s not that I wouldn’t love to learn Karate – I would – but I need something familiar in my life.

I found my first place to try and I was absolutely terrified. I didn’t expect to be. I have social anxiety disorder, but I thought I somehow didn’t have it anymore. I realize now that I just haven’t had to be in an unfamiliar group of people in years. Funny how that works. So my body reminded me what it means to have anxiety, and my brain reminded me to be sure to write down what I would say on the phone before I called. And then my brain reminded me that my voice sounded awfully shaky and nervous in the message, so I decided to avoid meeting that teacher any time soon. He didn’t call back, so I ended up going to a class where the teacher wouldn’t expect anyone new. Luckily, when I walked in, there was this guy looking super confused so I knew he was new too and the instructor wasn’t 100% focused on me.

I thought the hard part was over, and then this guy says there is a changing room. So I am freaking out like what do I do? Am I required to change in there or is it just in case I want to change in there? Should I want to change in there? I wore my spats under my sweatpants because of this exact situation, but I couldn’t help but think that even with the spats on I should still be in the changing room. At the same time, there was only one changing room and there was a line, and class was about to start.

I was too busy worrying about my ever so slight lateness in being ready to notice that the class didn’t bow in. I bowed to the mat in a sort of half-assed way, like I want to bow to the mats but I’m not sure if you guys do that here… turns out they don’t.

As an aside, I really like the process of bowing in and out of class. It helps me separate my personal life from my training. It reminds me to be fully present and focused. As someone with ADHD, I need every reminder I can get to stay focused.

Anyways, there was one other female person in this class, so naturally she immediately decided we were partners. I certainly didn’t mind, as the entire class seemed to be busy pretending that new people did not exist. It was strange though. We never switched partners so I really only met this one person. In a way, thats a good thing, but it also has me anxious to go back, because if I meet only one person each class, how will I ever become comfortable in the community as a whole?

I’ll go back tomorrow for a no gi class. It’ll actually be my first no gi class, so Im a bit excited. Im also nervous to meet new people again. And nervous because another school I contacted is telling me nothing about prices until I go there. That makes me not want to go there.

Running with Dog

My mother told me that the dog was good at running. And I mean he sort of is. He’s fast and muscular. But he makes an awful running partner. The dog was so excited to run, I almost want to try again, but it was hard.

I am super sure that my dog is secretly trying to kill me. Usually he does this by placing a toy behind my foot as I wash dishes or go to get something out of the fridge. When I go to turn around he hopes that I will trip. But on the run he tried to kill me slightly differently. This time, instead of tripping me with a toy, he decided he would trip me with his body. This dog is not small. This dog is a German Shepherd. And maybe 2 minutes into our run, this dog walks directly in front of me and stops. Why is my dog like this.

So after I tripped over the large animal and didn’t die, Dog decided he would really just run with me. Maybe he had second thoughts after realizing that he needs me to survive. Running with Dog felt like a sort of test in agility. He wouldn’t stay by my side so I let him have the length of his leash and he used this extra room to cross in front of me repeatedly. Until I stepped on his heel and was like bro thats not my fault you need to give me room.

I thought that dog would enjoy running with me even if I am slow. I figured he would stay by my side whether I was running or if I needed a quick walk break. That was not the case. We didn’t even make it a mile before I decided the run was over and that we would walk home. Poor dog. Creature wants to run fast and kill me, but I can’t run fast and prefer not to die.

New Year New Shoes

Somehow I ran a mile in under 10 minutes. That felt pretty good. Not the running part, but that feeling when I finally beat that goal. Now I know that I can. I’ve always had a hard time making progress without someone else pushing me, and I’ve never been okay with that. If I can succeed with someone else pushing me, I should be able to do the same with me pushing me. Because why would I do for someone else what I wouldn’t do for me?

I want to be faster. And so I will be.