California Dreamin’, Barcelona Thievin’

I promised a few people I would post about this, but I want to keep it in a more positive light instead of a ‘woe is me’ post – so here goes 😉

danger-thieves-barcelonaObservations and reflections after my Barcelona trip where my passport and all id/credit cards etc were stolen:

1) A piece of paper does not define you, but it most definitely helps you get back to Canada.  People can steal all of your things, but they cannot take your spirit too 😉

2) Some countries are known for certain things… (re the title of this post) Sometimes these things will happen to you.  I shall visit California soon! haha

3) You really learn a lot about yourself, your friends,  and your family, in a time of (let’s call it) chaos for dramatic purposes 😉

4) When you are left to figure things out by yourself, you are more resilient than you think that you are.  GIve yourself credit for this.

5) You do not always have to be independent, it’s okay to ask for help along the way.

6) Things will not always go your way, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t learn from all that happens and move on a stronger person than when you started.

These things seem pretty simple, but you sometimes forget when you’re not in your ideal environment/circumstances.

I am currently on vacation in Northern Ontario – listening to crickets, reading books on my mom’s patio, canoeing across lakes, walking on paths by the lake with my cousin bestie, catching up on tv, having meals cooked for me by my awesome little bro, enjoying my 30th birthday celebrations (again) family style, playing night golf, having lunch and a Pete’s Dam walk with my bestie.  It’s only Tuesday and I’m here until Sunday.  These are the things in life that remind you that life can be simple and awesome.  I’m doing a lot of reflecting here and have an interesting post coming up!

bewhereyouwant

I’m thankful for this time to relax,  get my mind and self back on track!  I’m super excited for things to come!

-Bexx

Sporting Life 10K 2013

Sporting life

I ran the Sporting Life 10K this morning.  It’s one of my favourite races of the year- both because it’s a huge race of 27,000 people, and because it is for a great cause.

All of the money raised goes towards supporting Camp Oochigeas, which is a camp that is run for children with cancer.  A lot of people were wearing what they run for on signs that were pinned to their backs.  It was motivational to run behind someone wearing “Run for those who cannot” or those who were running in memory of someone who lost their battle with cancer. It really puts things into perspective- you are still alive, you are running – now give it all you’ve got!

I haven’t been training, so this race intimidated me a bit. My Achilles actually doesn’t feel that bad though, so I’m pretty excited about that! Healing is awesome.

The race itself was awesome.  I used to run with music and now when I do races I find that running without it makes me more in tune with the things around me and also with how I feel.  I used to think that it would be terrible to run without the help of the music, but now I find it invigorating!

I looked up my time on-line and for some reason it’s not there.  I am curious to know how I did.  I know that I wasn’t hitting a PB, by any means, but I’d love to at least know for myself, to see how much work I have to do to start hitting some of those PBs! 😉

I’ve learned a lot about myself in the last year.  I like shorter races, and I think I want to focus more so on getting faster, than distance.  I did a half marathon, and knocked it off the bucketlist.  Part of finishing that race turned me off of running for a bit, and I wasn’t sure why at the time.  Running in my head had become more of a job than something that was fun and that I enjoyed.  For now, I’ll put the half marathons on the back-burner and focus my eyes on the prize(s): some PBs in the 5K and 10Ks 🙂

Best sign on the side-lines of the race: “Fastest Parade Ever!” *grin*  I was quite amused.

2 million dollars were raised today for Camp Ooch, and at the end of the day that’s what counts the most!

Happy running,

-Bexx

5 Ways to Stay Inspired This Spring

As the lovely Spring weather arrives, I want to make sure that you all stay inspired.  I sometimes use these to help myself stay inspired, because inevitably we all need it at times 🙂

fitness

A few of the things I think that you can do to feel your best while embracing this wonderful new season:

1-       Always make sure that you’re challenging yourself and not letting yourself plateau- you won’t stay inspired, if you aren’t changing it up.  Needless to say, this doesn’t mean ditch your favourite spin class altogether.  It means change things up and add new things into your routine.  Try a new barre class, join a social media #plankaday type challenge and you’ll be really surprised how much this inspires you to improve and do better. The encouragement from those around you will help especially when it comes to social media. 🙂

2-      Keep a positive attitude- You will do more, achieve more and celebrate more success if you have a positive attitude about fitness and health.  It has happened to all of us- bit by the ‘bittter bug’ – we have a negative attitudes sometimes.  It’s not always going to be sunny out, but the sun is still there somewhere behind the cloud.  It’s up to you to find it, harness it, and get that inspiration back!  You own this… do it up!

3-      Write down your goals and check them off when you complete them- I’m a big fan of lists and setting goals. I get extreme satisfaction from checking things off of my list and writing the date that I completed them beside it.  (See my Life KPI List)  There is a lot to be said about the positive reinforcement that is found through keeping a running tally of your accomplishments.  It’s all to easy to focus on the negative, but the positives will continue to take you to that new level.

4-      Look for others who are on similar journeys to your own- power in numbers! When you feel like giving up find a group of similar people who are on the same path that you are when it comes to fitness.  Maybe it’s joining a class to really keep you inspired, and rev up, or maybe it’s calling up some of your girl friends and going on a hike.  Either way surrounding yourself with like-minded people helps you maintain your path, but also reinforces the healthy choices that you’ve been making on your own.

5-      Inspire others- sometimes when you inspire someone else, the positive energy comes right back to you.  It arrives in the form of that ‘feel good’, I’ve helped someone else’ type feeling and it reminds us of our own accomplishments, how far we’ve come and where we’d like to see ourselves as well.  I’m not saying do things solely to inspire others, your heart also needs to be in it for you.  At the end of the day if you set a great example for those around you,  they will not be able to resist being inspired by you too 🙂

Happy  ‘Spring’ training,

-Bexx

One thing has got to be like the other…

woman's world
My early 90s ‘fitness’ influence…

Since I ran that first lap in high school fitness became a very big focus for me.  I’m not by any means claiming to have been an athlete, but it was always important to me.  I would do crunches and crazy workouts in my bedroom before bed at night, that I had cut out from my Mom’s Woman’s World magazines, dreaming of the abs that I could have just like the girl in the demo pics.

I remember being so self-conscious about my body and never really knowing what to do about it.  My mom would tell me I look fine and encourage me to wear bathing suits that actually fit and instead I would sit on the shore with my jeans shorts on and my big t-shirt not really listening.

I wasn’t sure where my fitness journey was taking me, but I DID know it was important.  I think the key to success is really arming yourself with the right tools.

You cannot have fitness without eating right – just like you cannot appreciate how hard you work and how great you look, if you do not love yourself.

Now there has been some controversy about the recently released Dove ad.  Some are obviously pointing out the ‘yeah that’s great, but they’re still trying to sell you soap.”  I’m not going to disagree with that, but I’m going to really have to strain my brain to really convince my own self that this type of video is really transcending into soap sales.  I think Dove is trying to make a statement, a lot like the Nikes and the Under Armours of the world.  They’re trying to really resonate with their current and potential consumers.  Either way, whether successful or not, we’re definitely all aware of the campaign and talking about it, so they’ve obviously done something right.Love luck

I think the message is evident though – they’re trying to empower women to appreciate who they really are, and to question their harsh judgements of themselves.  We’ve all been guilty of it.  We all look in the mirror and complain instead of celebrating the things we’re good at, and the things we have.

I used to position things in my head as… “I’ve been doing it wrong for a while now…. ”  Instead I want to be more like my little inspiration’s “Daily Affirmation”  and celebrate the things I am good at.  I have struggled with healthy eating, but that does not mean that I am doing poorly.  I push myself at Femme Fitale every week.  I am trying to make the changes I want to see in myself, and the existence that I create for myself.  I’ve been working hard on the physical fitness aspect for a long time now, and I just need to marry this dedication to healthy eating.

Challenge accepted.

“I love my house, I love my hair…..I love my pajamas… and I can do anything good… Yeah! YEAH! Yeah!!! ”

Happy Thoughts,

-Bexx

The Return of the Mack…er…Bexx

lacing up I picture my return to running like the first part of the Chris Morrison video in Return of the Mack when he’s walking down a hallway all blinged out, cool and suave, and the lights are shining down and he looks so confident, calm and collected like he belongs.  There’s a ‘no big deal’ attitude about the way he walks down that hall (click here if you care to watch and see what I’m talking about.)  When I lace up for the first time back, I’ll probably just have a ponytail, and won’t be wearing as much bling, but I think I could totally find a tunnel around here somewhere to start and look/feel like I’m in the video.  I have no idea what this has to do with anything, but I promise I have somewhat of a point to make 😀 (I’ll also never be quite sure why I have so many obscure pop culture references from the 90s in my head….I ought to get checked out ;))

Having only been out of commission once with a pulled hammy, I never really understood how people felt when they were injured and couldn’t do anything.

I healed the hammy in two weeks, and had welcomed the break from my crazy fitness routine at the time.  Now having suffered from this pain in the back of my ankle/heel, for about 6-8 weeks, I have not only exhausted all of the people who I can complain to, but I have also learned to appreciate how crappy an injury can be.  I mean don’t get me wrong, there are worse things in the world than a small injury like mine, but when the doctor told me today that I could run again, I wanted to jump up and give him a bear hug.  I don’t think that’s really welcomed or legal… so I held back.. but the point is, when you receive good news like that, it’s good to have brought a buddy that you can hug when there is good news.  I’m sure I had another point, but I’ll go with that one.

I am going to get myself some new running shoes, lace up and hit the road.  Not right this minute (because I’m busy typing away to you guys) but sometime soon! This rest has given me a new perspective, and I need to figure out what routine will work best for me.  I can’t just add everything back into my workout schedule, but I’m overall just happy that I can run.  Obviously I will have to take it easy and do lots of wonderful stretches, but I’m so thankful to be back.

A duck out of water is like a runner without a shoe?  I’m sure you get what I’m trying to say.  Either way, I believe John Malkovich puts it best in Burn After Reading when he says: “You  f*ckers, I’m back!” (I would have probably used the word b*tches instead and said “I’m back b*tches, I’m back… but I wasn’t in charge.  Sad really. )

xox

-Bexx

Social Media and 100 Days of Burpees

The other day I was on #fitchat and I met @300lbsandrunnin .  He was talking about his #100DaysofBurpees Challenge, so of course I needed to butt-in and ask what this was about.  300 lbs and Running's 100 Day Burpee (You can click here if you’d like to know more or participate.  Come join in on the burpee fun!!  If you do not know what a burpee is, you can click here.  My cousin asked what a burpee is and then suggested that it was something that someone did after drinking a Slurpee too quickly.  har har. )

Admittedly I’m picking up this challenge a little late in the game.  I started on day 20, and plan on continuing through to day 100, given my poor heel can take it.

The awesomeness of social media and ‘chats’ that are run on Twitter are evident once again and have proven to be quite beneficial to me.  Never would I ever commit to doing burpees for 100 days by myself! (Not going to lie about that one hah.)

Before, I never understood why people swore by chats on social media.  I have learned over time why.  You are chatting with people from all over the world who are interested in the same things as you.  You sometimes even get a chance to brag about your own accomplishments too, and of course sign-on to support others and participate in challenges. 🙂  (I’m not saying do it because you’ll get an imaginary internet pat on the back, but I’m saying do it because you will gain friends you didn’t even know were out there.)

I have had the opportunity of ‘meeting’ quite a few of you on social media and look forward to the day we can put the face to face with our friendships.  When I try to explain this to some of my friends, I get the “These people are not your REAL friends, Rebecca.”  On the contrary I believe quite the opposite.  I’ve ‘seen’ imaginary friends before, my brother used to have one growing up named Cheermuck.  (He’s going to kill me for writing that… and no I have no idea where the name came from, and when he drew a picture of him once he looked like a tree with a face on it.)  Anyways, returning to the subject at hand, I have also met people who I have talked to on social media before, and we’ve had some of the most solid friendships.  When you read and participate in someone’s social media, you do get to know them quite well before you actually meet them face-to-face.  You often already know a lot of things about them that you both have in common, the bonds have already been set.

Social media gives people an outlet, and allows them to say what they truly feel about their passions and what is happening in their lives.  Never would I ever have predicted that I would have such a great support network of like-minded people who are constantly encouraging me to get out and do my running, my planks, my burpees.  etc.  It’s like having 1000+ personal trainers and life coaches at your fingertips, or as some may call them, friends 🙂

Happy training,

-Bexx

Jamaica Update to Come!

Hi Everyone,

Returning from a vacation is always taxing (haah I suppose not taking vacation is also taxing to some…) and I am so far behind in emails and tasks that I haven’t had a proper time to post or write about my vacation.  I promise I will get to that soon.

I also have an exciting post coming up in the NOT SO AMATEUR section of my blog featuring someone who I hold dear to my heart that is a great inspiration to me and those around her, Miss Hilary Jack.  I will try to post this by end of day!  I am going to be using the NOT SO AMATEUR section of my blog to talk about ‘every day normal’ people who have met their fitness, athletic and/or health goals and serve to inspire those around them in everything that they do and be recognized for doing so!

I will leave you with a dorky photo of me on the beach.  It was dark so it didn’t turn out as well as I had hoped. (Neither did the plank that I was doing in the picture either 😉 hahah.)

-Bexx

Bexx on the Beach!