Confession: The last time I attempted a headstand was probably 3 weeks ago … maybe longer, and I could NOT get up. I could not get my hips over my shoulders, couldn’t get my balance shifted so I could make it into a headstand. It really disappointed me. I was tired at the time, and I have kinda hung onto that small thread as the reason, but I haven’t tried it again, not wanting it to be confirmed that I can no longer do a headstand because I’m not strong enough to balance and lift the extra weight I’ve gained.

This week I’m starting to feel more ‘on track’ than I have in a long while, so, I decided to give it another try. I did it against the wall, but didn’t have to use it to balance. It took two tries to hold it, and wobbly AF, and it didn’t last long, but I made it. 

The weirdest part is that my QUADS start to cramp … quads? Why quads? I don’t know, but they were super-unhappy with the whole thing. So weird. 

But, now I know I can still do it, even if not very well, so I can start building back up to being good at it again.


It was a great weekend, mostly thanks to @losingmydemons. We were lazy bums together Saturday and it was wonderful. Also, I now have a new doggo bff, which I’m very excited about.

Sunday was B’s 30th birthday, and we spent the day relaxing & watching Fear the Walking Dead. He was like a little kid opening his gift – the silver boat. It made me happy.

Now it’s Monday, and I’m headed to the gym in the rain. I’m finally over this sinus infection, and in the spirit of not getting sick again, it’s time to locate those shits I used to give about my health and fitness. Let’s go!

caffeinatedoptimism  asked:

8, 32 :)

Talk about the thing you are most proud of.

I’m proud of myself for securing my new job! I’ve busted my ass through multiple internships and temporary positions, and it all paid off. The job pays well, has great benefits, and I’ll be able to move up as long as I work hard and become proficient in all of the different programs I’ll be using.

Talk about a place you remember from your childhood.

My grandparents lived in an old plantation house with a toooon of land behind it. My grandpa and I built a treehouse out in the woods and I remember camping out there and having picnics every time I visited them. They sold that house over ten years ago, but I still remember everything about it.

The Universe has conspired to make YOU ...

Do you ever think about how amazing you are? The Universe has conspired to make you. Thousands of steps have gone into your creation. If just one of your ancestors had turned left instead of right at a critical juncture, you would not be here right now. Can you wrap your mind around how amazing that is?? How many things have happened over the course of history to bring you to this place right now? Thousands? Tens of thousands? Hundreds of thousands? Millions

Stop treating yourself like you aren’t special and amazing! The Universe has conspired since the BEGINNING OF TIME to make YOU

You are amazing! Everything about you is unique and perfect. You bring something to this world that no other person does. You have a way of seeing things that no one else does. You contribute things to this world that no one else can. 

There is no one more you than you, so be the best you you can be! Cherish everything about yourself. You were made by the Universe, and that’s a big deal!!

A little reminder that mental health matters, too.

This morning I woke up at 5:30, put lunches together for the day, and planned to leave for the gym at the usual 6:20. My back was sore, and pretty stiff, but I still have clearance to work out carefully. I’m so used to going to the gym in the mornings that if I don’t go, it feels… weird. Maybe even a little guilt-inducing.

I was just about to put on my gym clothes, but then I thought: you know what? What if I just take this early morning time and use it as me-time? So that’s what I did.

And here I sit. I’m snuggled on the couch with my heating pad on my back, watching an episode of The Office, tumbling. I just finished putting some dinner for tonight in the crock pot - something I’ve wanted to make for a week and haven’t managed to find the time or energy to make. This down time, this in-between time when there are no pressures or stressors, when I don’t need to be doing anything for anyone else.. it is so relaxing and rejuvenating. 

I’m not at the gym, getting a good cardio session in. I’m not actively creating a calorie deficit or sweating out my work stress. But that doesn’t mean that this time isn’t necessary. I have come to feel guilty for taking “me-time” these days, because life gets so busy and there is always something else I could or should be doing. But I don’t need to be guilty - and I need to remind myself of that often. Have you taken some me-time lately? Maybe it’s time you do! 


3/13/2016 Aerial yoga Practice

  1. My favorite thing for my back, just hanging from my hips and letting gravity give me an adjustment.
  2. Basically the same as 1 but with a little stretch for inner thighs too.
  3. Supported Handstand – it’s not as supported as you’d think. Most of my weight is in my arms, but it takes the fear of falling away to have the hammock around me.
  4. Plow
  5. Holding my full body weight in my arms upside down. 
  6. Shoulder stand – most of weight is on my shoulders (vs. arms in the previous pose)
  7. Supported Warrior III both sides
  8. Mountain climbers. Did 2 sets of 20 (10 on each side)
  9. Shoulder opener
  10. Ahhhh … rest. Corpse pose.

Looking for some input here…

Apologies in advance, as this is totally non-fitness related.

Last fall, I started making blankets. I found a crochet pattern that I really enjoyed using, and made the big cream-colored blanket above, which my cats obviously love. I also made two more, smaller in size, for my mom and mother-in-law as Christmas gifts. The grey blanket shown above was not made by me, but is a photo of a blanket made from the same pattern.

These blankets are so lovely and so SOFT. I absolutely love mine. It looks like it might not be so warm, because it’s so chunky and loose-looking, but they are really warm too. 

I want to make more of these, just because I have a lot of fun doing it. But I’m running out of people to give them to. So I’m wondering…

a) Would anyone here on tumblr be interested in having one of these handmade for you and shipped to you by yours truly?

b) If I were to look into Etsy or something similar, what would you consider paying for a blanket like this?

The final dimensions of the blankets I’ll be making will be the same size as the brown and cream colored blanket above, about 76″ x 50″. 

Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated!


2016 June 14 Spin Class – 45 Minutes ‘Express Ride’

Oh wow! This was awesome! I thought I might die a couple of times, but I (and my friend) made it through! 

LOOK AT THE FREAKING TIME IN PEAK HR ZONE! That is just crazy!  I never get into peak zone when I ride my bike – not even close! I just can’t seem to push myself to that place when I’m riding my bike, but this certainly did it!

It really made me feel strong, too, cos I could do most of what the teacher said to, just had to sit back a couple of times when we were doing these stand up/sit down/stand up/sit down things, and I’m sure I leaned on my arms more than I should’ve, but for my first time, I really felt like I did a good job. And, with all the standing up, my back never had a chance to complain about it. 

It will be interesting to see how my legs feel tomorrow.  Mostly my quads.

Anyway, YAY! I did it! I’m really pleased with my effort and happy that I got out of my comfort zone and did another new thing. Next week is Kick Boxing! eeep! Now that scares/intimidates me! 

Did you ever realize something about yourself,

and think, how haven’t I realized this before? This is food related and personal, so if you find food chatter triggering, turn away now.

Today I went out for lunch. Not with anyone, just walked over to a little restaurant nearby and had some chili and a baked potato, and scrolled my phone. Nothing remarkable.

But I never do that. I’ve made a habit of eating at my desk. I eat at my desk to avoid the awkwardness of eating in our communal kitchen/sitting area. NYC is this city that is filled with fad diets and restriction and pressure to eat the “right” foods (i.e. the almighty Salad) and to avoid “bad” foods (i.e. the dastardly Carb). It just so happens that I don’t buy into this way of thinking, this food culture, because I’ve worked very hard for some semblance of a healthy relationship with food, thank you very much.

So when I bring in pasta (yikes!) or a sandwich (with TWO slices of bread, or god forbid, a ROLL) I can hardly enjoy it between the commentary about how everyone else is avoiding carbs because that’s the only way to lose weight, I should really try using at least a whole wheat wrap, etc etc. And the days when I bring in a salad, or some brown rice and veggies, it’s always “oh I WISH I had the self control.. I just never have time to prep things ahead of time.. Are you on a diet Val?”

To avoid that, I started eating at my desk. And inevitably, over time, the carb-haters will come over on pasta days and sandwich days just to *look* at my glorious lunch, because obviously they could never eat this themselves.

So when I went out for lunch today, I realized that for the whole hour, I was calm and happy just scrolling my phone and enjoying my food. Because lately, I’ve actually been having anxiety / panicking during my lunch hour. Most days I have had to get up halfway through my meal to go to the ladies room so I can calm myself down and watch my heart rate go down as well. It’s terrible. I was thinking maybe it had something to do with what I’m eating, but couldn’t find a pattern.

But today I had none of that. And I realized, it’s not my food. I think the weird social pressure in my office is to blame. I used to have extreme stress when it came to eating through college, and I think it’s bringing me back to that place.

So, long story, short: I’ll be taking my lunch outside from now on. Whatever I decide to eat, I’ll be eating outside where I can enjoy the food and not worry about the commentary and hushed conversation. I feel really glad that I realized this today. Really glad.


Got tagged by @fatgirlgetsfitatlast to sds other day and just remembered. Its nearly 4am, and I’m at work and shopping for lawnmowers on my lunch break due to mine dying 😧

I taaaag @losingmydemons @big-to-beautiful @the–witcheress @oddishodyssey @malachi-is-shiny @quadsasaurus-rex @envy45-weightloss @coffeebeans-and-saladgreens a Aaaand @missjojothemighty to show their lovely faces on my dash.


Me before exercise,
Me after exercise.

That snapchat filter.. can’t decide how I feel about it. But I can decide how I feel about my workout, which is pretty good. My back is still SO TIGHT, but I was super mindful of how it was feeling, so I really didn’t push it in the gym. I did 2.9 super light miles followed by a lottttt of stretching. A lot.

I’m hoping my back continues to heal up. I’ll just keep on doing what I’m doing and we will see. Light workouts, stretching, heat and ice. Anti-inflammatory meds. Repeat.

Happy Tuesday to ya! Hopefully it’s less humid where you are than where I am, because this is nuts. Summer is here.


Selfie Sunday, and also tagged by @theunstuffedpepper to sds, so here you go.

Me and @i-want-to-be-wonderwoman just chilling out on the sofa after making some pumpkin curry, and watching bad TV.

Traditional sds tags @oddishodyssey @coffeeandfitblr @big-to-beautiful @missjojothemighty @wrenberries @the–witcheress @fatmaninalittlesuit @fatgirlgetsfitatlast @losingmydemons @loverofmybody


today I decided to get the combat dvd out and try it again. I actually want to stick with the program and get some points for the team since I been slacking lately.

But not for April. Today I’ll do Combat, tomorrow I’ll run a trail, and maybe in between those days do some DDP Yoga.

45 minutes of Power Kata is in the bag for my team and I feel awesome. There was a moment where I was going slow and not catching up and then Fallout Boy came on and I just destroyed someone’s make believe face with my uppercuts.


Let’s go team!!

Happy Birthday, William! I hope this day, and this year, are both as special as you are!

Today is @mr-rubberlegs 24th birthday! If you don’t know William, you should! He’s one of the most inspirational people I know! He’s been through a lot, is still going through a lot, but he just keeps fighting to stay out of a wheelchair! Here is his story.  It’s not the same story that you’re used to, trust me! 

Do me a favor everyone, go wish him a happy birthday!! 

Originally posted by thesightofsettling


Cardio streak - Day 5: 3.1 miles

I was up and out at 6am on this beautiful Saturday morning to join John for his 5k run today. Mine wound up being mostly a quick walk with some running intervals thrown in there, but I’m happy to have gotten it done.

Even a mile into it, I wasn’t sure if I was going to do the whole 3-mile loop.. we have a busy day ahead of us and it was getting hot out there already despite the early hour. But I figured, I have to make the time, right? The busy day will be there waiting for me when I’m done.

Thanks for the extra motivation, John! I hope everyone has a wonderful day! ☀️