I don’t know about you guys but this winter thing sucks.
I’m now on day 8 of not running due to a wracking cough that started last week, and I am literally pacing the floors like a border collie that needs to get outside. Add this miserable snow we’ve gotten into the mix, and I am squarely in the middle of the winter blues. So to fight the existential anger that hits when the snow piles up and the phlegm just keeps on coming, I’ve stuck with a plan.
From the beginning, I stuck as best I could to a healthy eating plan. That’s one of my biggest downfalls in the winter: falling into bad eating habits and pigging out on junk in the name of hibernating (or whatever). To keep that from happening, we stocked up on healthy essentials the day before the big storm hit last week and I batch cooked that Sunday. It made a huge difference to have super healthy meals at the ready, like home made chili, beef stew, and kale-and-berry packed green smoothies every morning.
I also had to get creative with my home workouts. Regular cardio sends me into coughing fits. It’s too snowy, icy and cold to run outside anyway. And putting me in a crowded gym sounding like I’ve got the consumption basically ensures that they’ll send in the CDC to escort me out.
“Ma’am, step away from the leg press machine.”
So instead of starting a nationwide panic with my incessant coughing, I started off my zero mileage week with some yoga and focused on my core and handstands. I won’t lie – I’ve been discouraged by my lack of handstand progress. Even though I know it’ll take time, I’m an impatient girl. And while I’ve been working on my upper body strength on and off this training cycle, it was mostly the fear of falling out of the handstand and hurting my knees that’s kept me from just doing it. So I tried something a little less dangerous and attempted a headstand – and wouldn’t you know, I got it on the first try!!
I was so thrilled – This was one of those things that I always told myself I couldn’t do, but I finally swallowed that fear and turned it into fuel to just DO it. Needless to say, now that I know I can, I’ve been going upside down basically every chance I get!
Every day I try to move a little further away from the wall and work on my balance, and I’m loving it so far. So score one for just sucking it up and going for it!
Once the snow really started piling up, I was stuck inside with my Biggest Loser workout DVD’s. To keep it low impact, I stuck with the leg and arm portions of the Last Chance Workout a few times just to maintain and feel like I was doing something, and it worked pretty well.
After 4 days of being sick, I finally bit the bullet and went to the doctor – and it turns out whatever I had back in early January lingered around to give me a wicked sinus infection. The doc took one look at my throat and backed away with an “Eww..” – which was oddly very satisfying. It was nice to know I wasn’t just feeling sorry for myself!
She sent me home with some good meds and after a day or two of real solid rest, I finally started feeling better yesterday. So today I celebrated by picking up something I’ve been eyeing for a few weeks now:
Yes. It’s a hula hoop.
Four years ago, to help me get in shape for my wedding, I borrowed a weighted hula hoop from a friend and literally hooped my waist down to the smallest its ever been. Just 15-20 minutes a day, over the course of one winter, and I saw a very noticeable difference. So when I spotted this bad boy in Kohl’s a few weeks ago, I knew I had to have it.
Let me just say: I’ve had it for like 5 hours, and already feel my abs screaming from the 10 minutes I’ve done so far today!
I am the hooping queen!
Now that I’m finally feeling well enough to try the gym tomorrow, I’m going in with no expectations at all: treadmill walking and maybe some light jogging just to get my body back into the groove. Either way, I’m hoping to fall right back into half marathon training! I’ve missed one long run last week and this week’s 8-miler will most likely be a 5 miler later this week as I ease back into things, but I’m determined not to let this little speedbump turn into a roadblock.
How about you? How are you faring in this miserable winter? Or, if you’re one of the lucky people that don’t have to deal with this frozen ridiculousness, do you know how much I envy you? 🙂 Tell me how you’re getting through this winter!