Friday, August 30, 2013

My book, My writing, and My life

Well I am sure there are many different reasons to write. I know that I write for myself. Do I care what others think? Yes of course I have my moments but it helps me come to terms with that and just plain learn not to care. Really if I started caring my writing would change and the meaning of it would change.

I started writing my blog back in 2010 shortly after I had lost my weight. Seems a bit odd but I do say better late then never. I do wish I had started writing sooner. I hardly remember very clearly my whole experience before and after losing weight. But I remember enough to put it all together. For some reason I have been blessed with a very bad memory. Does that mean I am ignorant? Of course not. It means I have to work that much harder to get where I want to be. I don't know why my memory is so poor. The only thing I can think to blame it on is the seizures I had from a baby to a teenager. I am pretty sure I had a lot. I was taking medication for a while until my mom just said it was doing more harm then good. Then by some miracle one day they went away. Why was I the lucky one? I feel in my life I have been blessed with luck. Maybe it's not luck but we can call it that. Even though I have always said I had a black cloud following me around. I have had my share of challenges but I have always made it through and to be honest couldn't imagine my life without them. 

Now maybe I am getting away from the topic but I guess that is the beauty of writing for yourself. Even though others are reading it. If it moves them they can relate and benefit from it and if it doesn't they can read someone's writing that will.  Pretty simple really. Writing just kind of allows you to sort things out. It allows me to have a reference to go back to and remember certain moments in my life and how I was feeling. For me it could be the start to the book I have wanted to write one day. ;) You never know it might come true. I truly do believe anything is possible and if you never attempt it there is definitely no chance of it happening. 

I have found this website to be a great resource on writing. It seems when you read the great work of someone else it gives you the inspiration to write.

Now I know in the title of my blog post today I stated my book. Well for many years I have aspired to write a book and recently another writer inspired me to just start writing. One word, one sentence at a time. So I did. Today I started my book. Whether this is a book that will ever be published or read by anybody it doesn't matter. What matters is I am going to write it. No matter how long it takes. I will accomplish it one word at a time.

Is there something you have thought of doing for a long time but just haven't gotten started?

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Mindfulness made simple

So have you ever heard people talk about the term mindfulness? Previously in my life I would of had no idea what that meant or even cared. It's funny how things change. Years ago when I had what I call my breakdown where one day I just couldn't stop crying. I couldn't go to work or do anything. All I could do everyday was cry. I had no idea why or what I was going to do. I knew I had been stressed for many years and just kept pushing it aside. I went to a doctor and when I started crying the moment he walked in he just appeared so lost and had no idea what to do for me. Nobody did not even me. I didn't even know what I was crying about. The doctor offered me some prescriptions but I just refused to take them. I just couldn't. I didn't want that for myself and somehow I knew deep inside there was another way. I knew my job was very stressful for me so I started with that. I had already started losing weight at this point. I somehow knew things had to change. Didn't know how or what but something had to be different.

I didn't really understand anything until I changed. Until I found happiness in my life and myself. Then it was like an awakening. Maybe that sounds a bit cheezy but things are so much clearer now. I don't know how things worked out for me so well. Maybe my determination, strength, will, just something inside of me. Back then I never even knew I was strong. When you are at that point in your life you can't seem to find anything great about yourself or life in general. But the truth is we all have greatness inside of us and most of us don't even know it. It's funny I am not even ashamed to say that I cried. I know now that it's ok. It's not a sign of weakness. I had to fall into the deepest hole and feel like I had nothing left to build myself back up. Every time I fall and get back up, I feel stronger. I feel like my weaknesses have helped me develop my strengths. I feel like now I am living one of the greatest lives a person can have. I feel like I am incredibly happy and thankful. You can't beat that.

So you might be thinking, what does all this have to do with mindfulness? Well I guess you could say it has everything to do with it. Mindfulness is basically concentration. Another definition I love is:

"Mindfulness is moment-to-moment awareness. It is cultivated by purposefully paying attention to things we ordinarily never give a moment's thought to. It is a systematic approach to developing new kinds of control and wisdom in our lives, based on our inner capacities for relaxation, paying attention, awareness, and insight."

This definition was written by Jon Kabat-Zinn, a very famous person when it comes to mindfulness. In order to change my life I had to be aware of what was causing me distress in the first place. I had to learn how to relax. I guess you could say I had to learn a lot of things. I pretty much had to learn about myself. I had to get deep inside myself to realize what was going on. Because it seems the reason I had no idea why I was crying before was because I wasn't even connected with myself. I pushed everything aside. I didn't face anything that was bothering me. Mindfulness has allowed me to have a deep connection and liking for myself. I understand myself and see my strengths and weaknesses. To be aware of what bothers me and how to cope with it. That is what will prevent me from ever getting to the point I was at before. When I think of mindfulness I think of one of the simplest things. And that is to just realize I am breathing. After I started being aware of that I realized I had never paid attention to that before. When we push everything aside we miss the things that are right in front of us. Beauty, people we love, just all the small things that really make us happy.

If you look at these pictures do you notice the difference in me not just physically but mentally? Do I appear more confident? Stronger? Not just physically but mentally? 

Now I did say this was mindfulness made simple. I hope it gives you a better understanding but I do also understand if it still doesn't make since. It might not of made since to me before. Just try feeling your breath. Being aware of yourself. Feeling your chest rise and fall. Feeling the air move in your nose and back out. Just try listening to the sounds around you. Without naming what the sounds are just listen. Hold a feather in your hand and feel it. You don't have to describe it. You just have to experience the feeling. Maybe these tricks will make things a bit simpler. It's really just paying attention. Kids pay attention all the time because everything is new. They are exploring and figuring things out. Once we get to be an adult we pick up the feather and just throw it to the side and say "yeah, that's a feather." We kinda stop experiencing and noticing things.

So can you feel your breath? Does it make you feel different? More relaxed? More Focused?

Don't let all your hard work go to waste

“There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.” 

-  Beverly Sills

So for the last 9 months or so being unable to do very much working out of course I was paranoid about gaining weight. I have pretty much had an obsession about this since I lost all my weight about 4 or so years ago. Even though I know I know better or at least I thought I did, I started not eating very much. Pretty much just grazing maybe eating 3 times a day. Well I have been losing weight so its working right? But then when seeing my natropathic doctor the other day she mentioned to me that I wouldn't want this beautiful metabolism that I have worked so hard for over the years to go to waste. It might be working for me now but what's going to happen later. Something else to consider is the weight I am losing fat or muscle. Well I don't think I had very much fat so chances are its muscle since I haven't been able to lift anything with my back. My exercise routine has pretty much consisted of some gentle yoga and short 1 mile walks. My focus now in order to be successful still needs to consist of healthy foods and mostly eating foods that decrease vs. increase inflammation since I want to keep the inflammation as low as possible I will need all the help I can get. I do recall that I used to make fun of people who ate like I am eating now. You may be thinking what has your diet been like. Ok, so even though I am very embarrassed saying this cause I would of never thought of eating this way before I will confess.

A small bowl of cereal with milk
(yes, I know me eating cereal!)

A half of peanut butter and jelly sandwich

A chicken breast and veggies
(now that's more like it I know)

So of course I didn't eat the exact same everyday but some days were probably this bad. I know what was I thinking? Or was I thinking. My thoughts existed behind the wanting to not spend so much money on food. I get lectures from my financial adviser all the time wondering how I could possibly spend so much money on food. But when you are eating like 5 chicken breast a day and lots of veggies and sweet potato which is not even including the food my husband eats this tends to get very expensive.

So all in all my intentions were good but I have come to realize that I am probably going about this the wrong way. Chances are that I will be more successful keeping my weight off correctly by eating small more frequent meals. I can still experiment with cheaper options such as using other sources of protein like beans and nuts. I never would of counted things like that toward my protein source but I have to remember I am not a weightlifter anymore which means a lot of adjustments and changes have to be made.

Goal: Improve my nutrition while still searching for money saving options. Eat more of an anti inflammatory diet to keep the inflammation in my back down and drink more water.

As stated on web md and anti inflammatory diet consists of:
  • Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables.
  • Minimize saturated and trans fats.
  • Eat a good source of omega-3 fatty acids, such as fish or fish oil supplements and walnuts.
  • Watch your intake of refined carbohydrates such as pasta and white rice.
  • Eat plenty of whole grains such as brown rice and bulgur wheat.
  • Eat lean protein sources such as chicken; cut back on red meat and full-fat dairy foods.
  • Avoid refined foods and processed foods.
  • Spice it up. Ginger, curry, and other spices can have an anti-inflammatory effect.

Sample diet idea:

2 eggs with veggies or fruit

Handful of nuts

1/2 cup brown rice, 1/2 cup black beans, and 1/2 avocado

Greek yogurt

4-6 oz chicken and veggies

Nuts and Fruit

Now that I struggled to come up with just a sample diet I can see I will have to get more creative. Part of me enjoys cooking and part of me doesn't like to deal with the stress and cleanup cooking leads to. I am definitely not a natural cook which means I have to put a lot more effort into it then some. But I still do believe in whole foods and eating 5-6 times a day. It's time to get back on track.

What is your favorite money saving meal?

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Technology in Our Life, Our Mind and Our Sanity

I do sit and wonder in this whole world out there how many people are just like me. Probably so many more then I think. Wow, that is a pretty interesting thought. I was just sitting here imagining what others are doing and thinking at this very moment. What would happen if you put all of our thoughts together? Would they be very similar or completely different? Now I think I am getting sort of off topic and daydreaming instead.

To start with I know I am a big thinker. Of course aren't we all? It seems that is the nature of the mind. To think. Of course thinking wasn't as much of a problem when I had more to do to distract me. During my recovery from my back injury sitting at home all day everyday gives you way to much time to think. But going back to being distracted. It seems as a society a lot of the changes have been very good and beneficial but on the other hand probably not so much in other ways. If you think about all the distraction we all have on a daily basis from the busyness of our life and technology taking over no wonder we are all stressed and frantic. No wonder the amount of thinking we do has probably increased significantly.

Let's look at phones for instance. It originally started with just a phone from home. Which must have been so peaceful if you think about it. I don't even think anybody was able to leave a message originally. Now of course this would not work in today's society. But think about how distracted we get from our phone. We can do everything on it. When I was in my doctors office yesterday this lady was at the counter and said my phone is my life. She kind of repeated it over and over again and said she didn't know what she would do if something happened to her phone. As guilty as I am with getting kind of obsessed with my phone at times I realize the problem here.

Since I realize what is going on and what the problems are it gives me something to work on in my own life. I believe we need to live by example. Instead of focusing our attention on others and trying to change people around us, we really need to be putting all that attention in our self. How does change occur? I believe change happens by one person stepping out of the box. Finding a different way. Then when others see your success and realize how well your way works. It seems you would end up with change.

Now I am sure this discussion could go on forever but I think you get the picture. I think as a whole we should all breath more, think less (or I should say not get as involved in our thinking), and remember to enjoy the little things. Enjoy all the moments life has to offer because when we get too involved and worked up in the busyness we miss the journey. And the journey is what makes this thing called life worthwhile.

"Breathing in, I calm my body.
Breathing out, I smile.
Dwelling in the present moment,
I know this is a wonderful moment."

-  Thich Nhat Hanh

"I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples."

-  Mother Teresa

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Monday, August 26, 2013

Learning about my body

"The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge."

-  Stephen Hawking

I have to say rehabbing my back has been a huge learning experience for me in which now I almost feel as if I am in school with homework assignments and everything. I guess that is what happens when you get good medical care. Being a nurse myself I find all this very intriguing. Of course I learned about the muscles in school but for the last 4 years my focus has been on the veins and unless you deal with muscles day in and day out it is not very realistic to think you will remember them all. 

Today I learned about my multifidus muscles. Say what? Lol these are a small but I guess very important muscle in your back and supposedly a few of mine decided to take a vacation when they got tired of my back spasming and freaking out. I guess after a while they just decide to check out. So with a little contraction and relaxation work by putting my fingers on the muscles it will hopefully be able to train them to get back to work. 

Another thing I have discovered partially on my own and with a bit more education on it from my physical therapist is that when you are sitting it is best to sit with an anterior tilt vs. posterior tilt. Are you confused yet? Anterior tilt would be when you arch just the lower part of your spine, make  your bottom stick out and face your pubic bone to the ground. The posterior tilt is when you try to tuck your pelvis underneath (tuck your bum under), flatten the bottom of your lower back and face your pubic bone to the ceiling. Now I am of course no expert on all this stuff but it will be a continual learning process. But what I do know is I am becoming more aware of my body, how it feels, what helps and what doesn't. But for sure doing an anterior pelvic tilt when sitting down has been a tremendous pain reliever. 

Are you a visual learner?

Posterior Pelvic Tilt

Anterior Pelvic Tilt

So this is fantastic. I am making more and more progress each and everyday. Becoming more knowledgeable and mindful. And really looking forward to getting back to work next week which is when my self care and mindfulness about my body is going to be the ticket to my success in continuing my career and leading an active life. 

So the keys to recovery is understanding and knowledge. Persistence and dedication to finding what works. Don't ever let someone tell you there is not a way because when you stop trying you stop progressing. When you stop believing you stop living. 

Friday, August 23, 2013

Rehab Level 1

"I am too positive to be doubtful, 
too optimistic to be fearful, 
and too determined 
to be defeated."

So part of the keys to rehabbing successfully is knowledge and determination. This experience has been a huge eye opener for me. Coming to the realization that there are many people out there just like me dealing the very same or similar struggles. Being a healthcare professional myself I can certainly say we need a lot of work and it definitely appears we are going about this the wrong way. 

I recently had an interaction with a orthopedic surgeon who stood in front of me and told me that I had degenerative disc disease and annular tears in my back. He preceded to tell me that the pain I was experiencing was something I will have to deal with for the rest of my life and that there was absolutely nothing he could do for me. Wow, being a very active person and having a very active job this came as quite a shock to me. Of course I believed him. I mean he's the doctor right? 

Being a person that has always been determined to find a way no matter what of course I was not going to leave it at that. In my last semester of nursing school the instructor told me there was no way I could pass her class and graduate. Well guess what...I did. I was determined to prove her wrong. I spent the last 3 weeks of school putting everything I had into it. Of course I had to take anxiety and sleeping pills to deal with the anxiety attacks I was having for those 3 weeks but I was going to do whatever it took. I had worked too hard and nobody and I mean nobody was going to stop me. I made an nearly perfect score on my final exam to pull that off. 

I have never been one to be told I couldn't do something. And that part about me won't change. I am however getting wiser with age. Years ago I became determined to take care of my body. And as much as I thought all my fitness endeavors were part of being healthy it was probably more fun then it was beneficial. But without regrets because those were some fantastic years. It is time for me to really listen to my body. 

Listening to my body right now and doing things right is the only way I will be able to live a somewhat active life with minimal pain at this point. Which means that there is hope. Not hope that I will one day run a marathon because that would not be a smart thing for me to do but hope that I will be able to possibly not be in pain for the rest of my life. Hope that I will be able to continue to be fit and play with my kids when I have them. And hope that maybe one day I will be able to play a softball game, go for a hike, and ride a bike. It's really the simple things that I look forward to. I want to go back to work and continue with a job that I love so much. 

After 8 weeks of trying to deal with this pain and find the appropriate people to help me recover and get through this I have finally found a very dedicated and talented team of people that I know will get me where I want to be. A great chiropractor, incredibly talented massage therapist, a doctor who will listen, and a physical therapist with miracle stretches. Yes miracle...4 stretches that pretty much instantly took my pain away and allowed me to move in a way I wasn't able to move before. Now of course it will take time. These muscles didn't become tight overnight and I will continually have to work at it to stretch, strengthen and obtain more balance in my body. With all this I will get less and less pain and be able to function better each and everyday. 

Below are the muscles I will be tackling first. It is time for me and my muscles to loosen up a bit. 


Quadratus Lumborum Stretch
The Quadratus Lumborum is a quadrilateral-shaped muscle of the abdomen that arises from the iliac crest and the iliolumbar ligament, inserts into the lowest rib and the upper four lumbar vertebrae, and functions especially to flex the trunk laterally

Psoas Stretch

Psoas are muscles of the lower back. There are two psoas muscles on each side of the back. The larger of the two is called the psoas major and the smaller the psoas minor.
The psoas major originates at the spine around the bottom of the rib cage and runs down to the thigh bone (the femur). The psoas major acts to flex the hip.
The psoas minor also originates at the spine around the bottom of the rib cage but it runs down to the bony pelvis. It acts to flex the lower (lumbar) spine.

Hip Rotation Stretch

Iliacus Stretch
The iliacus is a triangular muscle that passes from the pelvis through the groin on either side and, together with the psoas, flexes the hip.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Who are we?

"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened."

- Dr. Seuss

So often we seem to get so involved in our activities that we feel as if we are that activity. If someone asked you who you are, what would your answer be?

To be honest when I think about that question it actually seems very challenging to answer. Can we describe who we are? I have always had trouble with those questions that ask you to list your strengths. It does appear very interesting that it seems easier to list our weaknesses then our strengths. Maybe it's because we are always telling ourself what we need to improve on and forgetting to congratulate ourself for what we have done well. I know I can be very guilty of this. 

I guess you can say for sure that my injury has made me really think about who I am and who I thought I was before. Now I am not Kim the olympic weightlifter, not kim the crossfitter. now i am just Kim. Who is Kim? Do you think others know who I am more then me?

Well that is entirely possible. Which I guess gives me something to work on. It doesn't matter what my body is able to do deep inside I will always be Kim. I have so many great things to look forward to. So many great things I can accomplish. I can still be fit and healthy. And I can still be me. The idea of retiring from competing and lifting heavy weights doesn't bother me anymore. I know now that I will get better. I am sure there are people that keep going back to it. But I am listening to my body now. It's telling me to take it easy. I just want to be healthy. I don't want to go through this again. I know that the challenges in my life are not over but I am learning from this one. If I take care of my body it will take care of me. Don't let what you do and what others think define who you are. 

So who am I?

I am someone with determination. I have a kind heart. I am silly. I am someone with not the prettiest voice but with a voice that's heard. I am someone people remember. I love to inspire and be inspired. I love to do what others think and say to be impossible. I am someone with a terrible memory but knows how to get the job done. Who am I? I am Kim and this is my story.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Finding Hope

"Only in the darkness can you see the stars."

-  Martin Luther King Jr.

So yesterday was by far one of the best days for me. Not because I was pain free cause I wasn't. But because I found hope. I found a doctor that listened and helped me come up with a plan. Finding someone to ensure you that there is hope can make all the difference in the world. Why cant we find hope inside when everybody is telling us there is no hope at all? Well it's not impossible but definitely a very challenging task. 
This is one example of where the problems lie in the healthcare industry. Now not all doctors are this way but when I saw the orthopedic surgeon who by the way advertised surgical and non surgical options told me that in his opinion working at the hospital wouldn't irritate my back (now that I have to laugh at because obviously he had no idea what nurses do), and then preceded to tell me that my condition is permanent, that I wouldn't be able to do the things I used to do and will always be in pain. And as if all that wasn't enough he told me there was absolutely nothing he could do for me. So I need to remember to call the doctors office and tell them to have the non surgical part removed from his bio. 

Being a healthcare professional myself and now experiencing this is a great. Ok not great in the fact that I am enjoying it cause I am not but great in the fact that I will have an even greater understanding and compassion for my patients after this. Knowing that everybody needs a smile. Everybody needs to feel loved and cared for. And everybody needs some kind of hope. I know everybody's situation is different. But there is always something positive that can be given to them. Even if they are at the end of their life you can still bring them peace and happiness. 

So maybe all of this has happened for a reason. I have so many great things to look forward to in my life. My career has taken me to great places where I will have the opportunity to really make a difference. My life has given me experiences that have allowed me to reach out to others, to inspire them and help them to know that all things are possible. I am eventually going to have a family in which I will be able to make a huge impact in my child's life and hopefully help guide them toward peace, success and happiness in their own life. 

I am truly blessed and grateful for everybody that has helped me through this difficult time in my life. I have always felt as if I had to always be the strong one no matter what. That I wasn't allowed to fall down. A few days ago my husband said to me, "It's ok to let everybody else be strong for you right now. It's ok." Wow what a huge relief. You mean there are others that will help me be strong when I have no strength left? That is what living and loving is all about. 

Now that I have a plan with this pain management doctor I saw yesterday I feel like I am not living in the unknown. She told me it will take a long time but that I won't be like this forever. Wow, what a relief to hear those words. Yes my life will still be different and I will still have to be careful and mindful about what I do but knowing that there is hope to move forward is the best thing I could hear.

Gaining strength in each moment to put one foot in front of the other and keep moving forward. Finding the courage to never give up even when the odds are against you. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013


"When problems beat upon you like a raging storm, search for the eye. You might not be able to avoid misfortunes, but you can find the calmest spot within them."

-  Richelle E. Goodrich

So it seems almost every second of every day I have been trying to wrap my mind around what has happened. My husband might tell you I am trying to drive him nuts and succeeding because I won't leave it alone, I won't stop asking questions and trying to figure things out.

Deep down inside I do know there isn't much to figure out. What I have is a very common problem and so many people out there are trying to deal with this pain everyday. Many people have this problem and have no pain at all. Why am I the one who will have the pain for the rest of my life?

 I know this is a question there will never be an answer for. People tell me it's because I am strong. I know I am strong and I can go out there and keep moving forward. I know I can prove people wrong and defy the odds. Not let this get the best of me. I do know I can be and will be that girl. I will do it. 

I do know that this beginning phase of trying to cope with the idea of being in pain for the rest of my life and that it is one of the hardest things I will try to do. Deep inside I say "what if I don't want to be in pain forever?" 

Unfortunately we don't get to choose everything we want. This will be my life now wether I like it or not. Even though I don't like it and I don't want it. It doesn't change the fact that my only option is to make the best of it. At this point I have to accept it. I have to use my mind to gain strength through it and to help me conquer the pain. The more you think about the pain the more it hurts. 

Of course if I don't do much it doesn't hurt much. But that is not my life and not an option for me. I have to go back to work soon. Do I know it's going to hurt? Yes I know it will hurt a lot. But I have found a job that I love and that I am happy with. I can't even imagine myself doing anything else. So on that note knowing that I have thought of every option. I will find a way to do my job. I have never been a slow walker. I walk with heavy feet. I have to completely change everything I was before. I have to be slower and more mindful of everything I do. I have to be more efficient to make up for being slower. I am good at what I do and when you find something like that, something you have a passion for, you can't give up on it.

I know that lately I haven't felt very strong. But I am getting closer to acceptance. I have to give myself time but yet I also have to put a stop to it and put a stop to it soon. Just stand up and continue to tell yourself everyday, "I am strong." Today I choose peace. I choose strength. I choose to never give up no matter what. 

How do you cope with things you don't want and didn't ask for?

Saturday, August 17, 2013

What now?

“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.” 

~Arnold Schwarzenegger

Needless to say there have been some tough days recently. Some definite wake up calls. Some life changing experiences. 

What I do know is it can always be worse. Yes I have worked around death and tragedy for years. I know. Does that necessarily make my circumstance any easier. Well not really but it's something I need to be aware of. It gives me something to be thankful for. No matter what happens we always have something in our life where we can find some peace and happiness. 

So what do I know? I know that when I saw a doctor yesterday he told me that I had degenerative disk disease with a annular tear at L4-L5 and L5-S1. You may be thinking I am speaking another language right now unless you have experience with this terminology. It basically means I have a tear in a couple disks in my back. Which from what I have heard is not always painful but wouldn't it just make since that I would get to be part of the percentage experiencing severe pain. Maybe I should feel special. 

What I was told by an orthopedic surgeon yesterday was that this condition will never go away, that I will be in pain forever and if I ever lifted heavy weight again I put myself at really high risk. Now it wasn't really the sweetest way to break this to someone especially when he told me there was absolutely nothing he could do for me. It makes you wonder why you were so eager to hear results like this. But without answers I would't be able to continue to move forward. 

Since this wasn't necessarily caused by one event. Working in healthcare since I was very young I have spent many years pulling and lifting patients. This would be problem number one. Then after probably already doing a tremendous amount of damage to my back I took up heavy weightlifting. Oh and not to forget about the fact that I weighed a couple hundred pounds myself for a few of these  years putting even more strain on my back. Now when I talk about heavy weightlifting I probably did lift weights that really our bodies are not meant to handle. Taking healthy to a whole new unhealthy level. 

Do I have regrets? Well no not really. Of course who would have known. I mean I was warned that I was a little ridiculous by my husband who didn't want to see me all banged up like him. Did I listen? Nope. Didn't even phase me that anything like this would happen. Now of course if I had realized, which I wouldn't of. Yes of course I would of done things differently. I don't think anybody would deliberately put themselves in this kind of pain. 

What does this mean for me? Well I do know it means I will never lift heavy weight again. Yep not even if by some miracle I can get this pain to go away. Risking experiencing this pain or something worse again is not worth it to me. This is the kind of pain that knocks you down to your knees praying that something would give you some relieve. Praying for things to be different. 

Am I ok with the fact that I won't be a weightlifter anymore. Yes of course. I have no choice but to be ok with it. It is one of those things that you wonder at moments in your life, how would I deal with something like that if that happened to me. The truth is you just deal. You have no other choice. To be honest I am not even sure what disappoints me the most not weightlifting or never playing softball again. But before I get too worked up in what I will never do again I do have to remember I have only seen this doctor. There are others that can help you return to a more functional level with less pain. Now with this information I will have to be careful and aware of what I am doing for the rest of my life. 

What this means is it's time to move onto the next chapter in my life whatever that may be. Eventually that will be a baby obviously after I deal with this issue and make it manageable.  This is just another part of life. Another experience that is just part of my journey. Our struggles develop our strength. And even though this journey has been a roller coaster with a few break downs. I will continue to be strong and move forward in my life. Being strong is the only option. Of course we are allowed our moments of weakness. Those moments help us figure things out and gather the strength to get back up again. To keep pushing and continue fighting. Giving up is never an option even when you feel like it is. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

What would life be like?

Have you ever wondered what life would be like if we didn't care what others thought?

Sounds like it would be pretty peaceful. Right? Or would it be too relaxed? If you didn't care what anybody thought, would you really care about anything? Would you put in any effort in the things you do?

It almost seems like thoughts of course are necessary. But maybe not to be taken so seriously all the time. If you painted a picture there would be some that liked it and some that didn't. In life there will be some people that like you and agree with you and some that don't. Should this dislike change who we are? 

Is it true the more you like yourself the more others will like you? Hmm...I recall there being people that are very fond of themselves but not really liked by anybody else. Lol 

But of course on the other hand if you don't like yourself at all will anybody else like you. Are you confused yet?

I laugh thinking about this post. It is seeming to me like it has turned in to be a series of thoughts and questions. ;)

I really love this statement in the book, wherever you go there you are by Jon Kabat-Zinn.

"Awareness is not the same as thought. It lies beyond thinking, although it makes use of thinking, honoring its value and its power. Awareness is more like a vessel which can hold and contain our thinking, helping us to see and know thoughts as thoughts rather then getting caught up in them as reality."

Something to think about! :)

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Experimenting with Epsom Salt

So during my injury I think almost everybody has asked me to try epsom salt for my back. Now me and epsom salt go way back. Ok way back meaning a couple years since I became a workout aholic. When I first started using them me and my husband lived in a house with a very large bathtub. Yes, a dream come true other then the fact it takes an hour for the tub to fill up and you would go broke with the amount of epsom salt you had to use. Then we had to move. My dream bathtub and fireplace swept out from under me. Next house had a regular size bathtub which I am sure most people have. Now coming from a tub that you could soak your whole body in to a tub where you have to soak half your body at a time a defiantly a bit disappointing. Needless to say my baths became a lot less frequent. Then the ability to even having a tub was swept out from under me. After another move I ended up with just a shower. Well at least I can stay clean but now while being injured epsom salt seemed to be out of the question. 

Until recently my chiropractor told me about epsom salt compresses. I will admit I did try that but in order to cover your entire back with a compress you need to use a large towel and lie on the floor which also turns out to be a bit messy with a wet towel and uncomfortable. So I decided to do a little research. Come to find out you can make epsom salt paste. Well I had an attempt with that by following a recipe I found online. But pretty sure came to realize it was never going to turn into paste just a bowl of water. I guess those ratios were a little off. 

Next epsom salt lotion. Hmmm....I do live lotion. My husband has told me many times that I am cut off from lotion. So far I think the experiment turned out a success. Now weather it works as well we will see but I did happen to notice it irritated my skin a little. Something to work on but getting closer. 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Who needs the gym?

Ok so I hope you know I am just kidding about not needing gym but of course there can be different kinds of gyms such as the great outdoors, which after getting attacked by a very large bug today i would recommend staying in doors. But come to find out I should be getting my workout in at work. 

During my physical therapy appointment today we were going over what I do at work and how to save my back. Does it seem a little concerning or surprising when I act like I have never heard about these proper body mechanics before? But remember what I said in my last blog post my body was indestructible. Oh yes or so I thought.

But proper body mechanics really means air squats and squat holds all day oh yes and some side stepping. When I hear the physical therapist telling me to stick my butt out I recall hearing that before and telling others that being the main focus when doing a squat. What I do not recall is ever actually doing that during my work day. So I am sure since I was indestructible proper body mechanics didn't apply to me. Funny how that works. Now it looks like I will save myself a little time in the gym and squat my way back to health. And I recall my orthopedic doctor recently told me to just stop squatting because my IT band was hurting. But from what it appears if I stopped squatting I would have a lot more hurting then that. 

Since I don't seem to have a picture of me squatting or good squat I should say I will just put a picture of me sitting. Well sitting is a type of squat, right? Ok so maybe in this instance my sitting form was not so great leaning forward and all but at least I Iook the cutest in this picture. Now lets face it when you look cute it gives you a little more flexibility or at the very least looks better on your blog.

Monday, August 5, 2013


Have you ever thought your body was indestructible? Have you ever had people tell you it will catch up to you and you thought that was impossible?

The best or worst part is when that comes back to bite you in the butt, for lack of better terms. I always wanted to go against the odds and do the things nobody else would or could do. Smart...well probably not but when your ego is in the way do we always play it smart and do what's going to be most beneficial to us in the long run? Not usually. 

I guess we pay for it in the end or to put it in a better way its a learning experience. Life is all about falling down and getting back up. Now sure I could think of it as I failed or I can think about the fact that I did some great and incredible things. I had some great experiences and memories. Even though its something you want to last forever but let's face it, nothing is forever. 

So maybe instead of looking at what I can't do now. Maybe I should focus on what I did do. I dead lifted 364lbs! Heck yeah. How many girls can say that? That is over twice my body weight!!

I lost over 60lbs and dropped from a size 16 to a 4!!

Talk about beating the odds. That was me! 

I competed in the crossfit regionals and placed in the top 20!

I got 4kg away from qualifying for the American open in Olympic weightlifting and competing against some of the best.

I learned how to do a handstand push-up!

I ran a half marathon!

I became the person I never thought I would be or could be! And with all that I don't have a thing to be discouraged about. 

I found myself. And that makes me happy. For so long I was lost. But never again. I have so many more things to do and to look forward to. Things waiting to be achieved. So what if I never compete in another Olympic weightlifting competition. So what if I don't run a marathon. I may just have to walk it ;)

More amazing things are just around the corner. All my experiences, trials and errors have made me who I am today. I will never give up on this thing called life and I will never stop moving forward no matter what obstacle I encounter. I will however listen to my body. There comes a time when it needs a little tlc. A time when maybe you can't continue to be so hard on it. Being smart is different from giving up. It's taking a different path.

Don't wait to take the first step in your life!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

I am going to have a baby

The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience."

- Eleanor Roosevelt

I know there must be some of you that saw this and said what!!! It's not a very nice trick but then yet again maybe it is. I am not pregnant yet but am planning on it soon. Maybe I even set a date. ;)

First of all I have waited this long to make sure I am as ready as I can be and yes I know you are never really ready but you can be ready. Hmmm...some of you may understand what I am saying. Everything has worked out the way it should. A couple years back I wouldn't of considered myself healthy enough physically or mentally to handle having a child. For some reason I knew I wanted to wait. I couldn't of told you what for but I just knew. 

I have felt myself working my way up to the point of feeling ready. And today I know deep inside that I am as ready as I will ever be and the time is right. I have given it a go trying to be a big time weightlifter, cross fitter, and just trying to be the best out there. Well I may not have ended up being the best but I certainly have been the best I can be. Now I am not giving up. I know it could be possible for me to continue to get better and as I will but my goals have now changed. My work, my life and my body just need me to relax and focus on the next chapter of my life. Being healthy, fit and focusing my attention on giving someone else the best possible life. Teaching them what I have learned and guiding them through their trials and errors, joys and struggles. I am ready for everything to not be about me. 

Now why wouldn't I just run out and have a baby right this second. Well because I figured I have waited this long for things to be right. Why not make them as right as I can be by taking a few months to plan, learn and prepare for what's ahead. And yes from what I have read already there are many things you can do at least 3 months ahead of time to give yourself the best chance of having the healthiest baby possible. This will give me the opportunity to first of all to get the full experience. Second to get all my ducks in a row. And third to just get as mentally and physically prepared the best I can. Right now I am focusing on healing my back and then I will be focusing on starting the next chapter in my life. It is very exciting yet scary all at the same time.