Well hello there. Remember me?
It’s been a helluva long time since I posted last. To be honest, the past few months have been really tricky, with work, fitness and my family situation. I’ve been experiencing an ongoing procrastination about opening up again on the blog, and it’s only gotten worse with time. But something has changed. I don’t know what exactly, but I feel ready to write again. I thought I’d start things out gently with the latest edition of the Comeback Chronicles.
For anyone who’s missed it, the Comeback Chronicles was a series dedicated to my recovery and comeback to fitness, after breaking my ankle very badly in December 2016. Part of the reason I stopped blogging was that my comeback has stalled quite considerably. But all that aside, let’s jump in!
What’s been going on
As I mentioned, things have been pretty hectic around these parts. I’ve been snowed under at work, and it’s been pretty all-consuming. I haven’t had as much time or headspace as I’d like for all the other things in my life.
As a side note, the holiday season has been pretty intense too, with work parties, drinks with friends, Christmas dinners and all the rest. Now that that’s all subsided, I can hopefully carve out a little more space in the day for myself.
My fitness routine lately has been pretty haphazard. Some weeks it seems impossible to fit a workout in, in between working late at the office, and actually having time to take care of myself (read: eat and sleep). Other weeks, I manage to kill it with my workouts, and feel full to the brim with motivation. It’s a tricky one. The key for me in 2018 will be to even out these peaks and troughs in my life, and find a routine that works for me.
I’m trying to be more consistent when it comes to strength training, which means (for me) 3 x strength-based workouts a week: lower body, abs, and upper body. The thing is, when I’m tired and have no headspace, I find it so much easier to zone out and do an hour of cardio than actually concentrate on lifting heavy things. Ultimately though, I know that strength training is going to get me the results I want; and so I have to persist.
Running has unfortunately been my downfall the past few months. I’ve gone through phases of running home from work every other night, to being so injured and in pain that I can’t actually walk. (I wish that was an exaggeration – it’s been a year since my injury, and I still can’t walk down stairs. No lie). I’ve been provisionally diagnosed with burstitis or achilles tendonitis, but I’m awaiting an official diagnosis once I’m referred to a physio. At the moment, I’m running purely for mental health purposes; that means if I’ve had a really terrible day at the office, or things are too much in my personal life, I break the “injury” rule and allow myself to run, even when it’s painful. I know it sounds ridiculous, but sometimes it’s the only thing that will clear my head, and for me it’s worth the trade-off of some pain.
Wow, that got a little intense back there, didn’t it? Well, the good news is that I’m still predominantly plant-based, and my relationship with food is getting somewhat better. It’s hard to turn off the calorie-counting in my head, but I do try my best to ignore it and get on with my day. My focus for 2018 will be to try to focus on filling my body with nutrients, as opposed to tracking every calorie down to the letter.
If you’ve made it this far, you might have guessed that I’m not having the best time, when it comes to my emotional and mental health. The first Christmas without my Dad was always going to be a difficult time, and to be honest work stress hasn’t made it any easier. I’m not coping as well as I could be (and part of that, I have to admit, is the fact that I can’t just take off on a 10 mile run whenever I feel like it) – but I’m trying to take positive steps.
Recently I moved in with two of my best friends, and that’s really helped me emotionally, in that I can always talk to them if I’ve had a shit day. Additionally, I’ve started seeing my therapist again, and whilst it’s slow progress, it’s progress nonetheless. (Side note – quitting therapy two months into your parent’s divorce because “the storm’s over now” is not a good tactic).
All in all, although this year has been a total shit storm, one thing I’ve really improved on is listening to my body and taking care of myself. I take sick days when I’m sick, I don’t run when I’m feeling under the weather, and I don’t drag my butt to the gym after a 14 hour work day, just because I have to. It might not seem like balance – in fact, it seems like a total mess – but I’m gradually carving out space for myself.
All in all, this year’s been a bit of a hot mess. But that’s okay. Life never goes to plan, and sometimes all you have to do is weather the storm.
How are you? How are you celebrating the festive season?
Lots of love,