Excercise


To follow up on my last post, no I haven’t found a running skirt for the half yet.

But I did find this article that compares 15 of them! Yes, I suffer from the need to obsessively research before I buy something (or decorate a room, or go on a trip…).

[Update: I decided on a skort! This was a close second (in “berry”), but I like the gray/pink ones because they are a) inexpensive, b) not glaringly pink because, let’s be honest, when this is over will I really want to wear a hot pink running skort?), and c) it’s got a nice compression short liner in it to reduce chaffing. Can’t wait to get it and to break it in!]

My child woke up at 5:30 this morning, for no apparent reason. She was crying when I walked in bleary-eyed and was going on and on about Nemo. WTF? Consequently, I’m tired today. Really tired because, of course, I went to bed late. Why? Because I’m incapable of watching just one Buffy episode (which I watched after Lost). I had my usual 1/2 cup of coffee at home, but I needed another when I got to work. Much to my surprise there were leftovers from a meeting in the break room and I scored a lovely pastry.

In order to justify that ooey, gooey cherry pastry I ate, I thought I’d let you know what I’m doing, training-wise, for my big half marathon in April.

A typical exercise week looks like this (from here on out anyway – my birthday celebrations put everything on halt):

Tuesday: 1 hour Zumba class (with a teacher that I have quite the story about*)
Wednesday: 1 hour yoga session taught by my lovely friend who blogs about television shows over here
Thursday: 1 hour walk with my hoop trainer
Saturday: a brutal hoop walk training that will be at least 2 1/2 hours long from here on out (last week was 7 miles and I think we’re doing 7 again this weekend)

*So, my Zumba teacher. There’s no other way to put it: she’s hot. Doing Zumba 5 days a week means she has an incredible body (and she has 3 kids! what an inspiration!) and I happened to mention it to a few people. I made the joke that if I played the other team, she’d be in trouble. Well, my big mouth got me in an embarrassing situation because one of the friends I was telling this to? Not only does she know my teacher….she’s her freaking sister! So embarrassing, especially because she of course had to tell her sister about what I said. Oy. There goes Victoria T.M.I. Winters again. We all had a good laugh and nothing was awkward with last night’s class – don’t worry.

For the half marathon I think it would be really cute to run in a jogging skirt – a pink one to match my hoop. It’s super girly and silly, I know, but I am hula hooping a half marathon after all! Can’t get more girly and goofy than that! I’m starting to research prices now. Here are some that I like – I’m hoping for one under $40. Drop me a line if you have an recommendations!

Running Skirt

Our house is finally getting back to normalcy. I know, I know I had a party with a few people last weekend. Big deal, right? Well, it seems to take us a while to get things back to normal – for all the dishes to be washed, for laundry to be resumed, for all the leftover wine and cheese to be consumed, for meal planning and grocery shopping to be resumed – oh, and that minor thing called my full-time job. And a 2 year old to take care of. And a spouse to hang out with. Oh, and that silly half marathon I’m training for. How do women do it all? Seriously! I’m tired, y’all!

Speaking of the half marathon, I just got back from a hoop presentation ceremony where each of the 72 hoopers were given our hot pink hoops that we’ll be hooping the half marathon with. In case you don’t know why I’m doing this yet, other than to brag about the fact that I actually hula hooped 13.1 miles!, it’s to support breast cancer survivors. Check out the organization here. Having experienced thyroid cancer just one year ago, this is close to my heart and I’m very excited and proud to be part of a team of 72 women doing something fun, physically challenging, and so public in order to make a statement of support to those cancer survivors who want to take hoop classes in my community. I’m hooping for hope, baby! I’ll be the one with the huge smile, the sore knees, and the still visible scar on my neck that I wear as my badge of surviving cancer.

Speaking of being tired, yesterday was a big day as far as hoop training goes. I skipped the previous weekend due to birthday festivities, so this weekend was tough. Not only were we no longer in the confines of Shelby Bottom Park, but we hooped a whopping 7 miles! It was amazing being in clear view of the public as we walked the sidewalks all the way from East Nashville, through downtown, almost to Vandy, and back again. Cars honked, a full church bus full of teenage boys clapped and whooped for us (thanks to pent up hormones, no doubt), people gawked and inquired. It was tough on the knee (my right one in particular) mostly because I think it’s such an abnormal rhythm and stride and also because the shoes I have are several years old (I took care of that by dropping some serious change for some new ones at Fleet Feet yesterday). But it was also exhilarating and went surprisingly fast because of our cheerleaders along the way. It took 2 hours and 15 minutes which is a pretty good pace for hoop-walking. I have some friends on Facebook who have requested video of what I look like because they can’t picture it, so as soon as I find the time (ha!) I’ll have Huz record me and will share.

Until then, I ask you working women and mothers: how do you do it all? I want to do everything I do well – how do you find the time and energy to be a good parent, a good wife, a good friend, a good employee, a good housekeeper, and good to yourself?

My Easter weekend was very un-Eastery, truth be told. I did not go to church, nor did the Easter Bunny show up with baskets laden with milk chocolate that Claire can’t eat anyway. There was no big family gathering and there was no lamb dinner with friends.

No.

My weekend rocked in different ways, though, because it was a time of empowerment for me. A time when I thought, hey I was diagnosed with the freakiest disease just 6 months ago and here I am alive, well, vibrant, and full of badass.

What am I talking about?

Well, I ran my first race this weekend. I ran a 5K while pushing Claire in a jogging stroller, which is no easy feat, mind you, considering that she’s 20 pounds and the stroller is probably about the same. It was freezing (40 degrees) that morning and I inadequately dressed Claire so she cried the last mile because her hands were so cold (she wouldn’t keep them under the blanket!), but I ran it. The whole 3.1 miles of it. And I did it in 33 minutes which isn’t too shabby if you ask me (I haven’t run but 3 or 4 times since last Fall and nothing more than a mile and a half). As I was running I thought, cancer? you can kiss my ass because here I am, running, alive, happy, and people are cheering for me to boot! It was empowering to say the least and it definitely won’t be my last race.

That night I did what I have been talking about doing for years. I got inked. Gasp! I have been thinking, nay agonizing, for months about what to get that would symbolize something important to me and that would still mean something to me in a decade or two. I finally decided on a bird in flight which would represent freedom and moving beyond the past: both the past of religious fundamentalism and the past of the Big C. I saw a girl’s bird tat the night of the Gala a few weekends ago and it made me excited. Getting cancer gave me the courage and the validation to go ahead with it. So, off I went to a local tattoo parlor that two of my friends have gone to and recommended. Initially I was turned away because the artist was busy (they don’t do appointments on the weekends – I tried), but I called him and arranged to come back at 8:00 instead. I went. I did. I love. It wasn’t THAT painful, though it definitely hurt. After going through labor pains, though, it was a walk in the park.

So, here she is. My symbol of freedom from the past. I’ve been granted grace sufficient to make it through the rough patches of my life and this will always be a reminder of that for me.

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On Easter Sunday, Huz’s uncle from North Carolina visited. We went out for brunch (I had a rhubarb mimosa and some lovely crepes with chicken and ham in a bechemel sauce and Claire ate almost an entire homemade apple sausage link!). Then we hung out at home, watched Claire play, hung out on the sunny patio while she napped, then I shared some freshly made Amaretto Bread Pudding with the boys before Uncle Tracy left for the airport.

Happy Easter to you and yours!

Love,

The Winters Family (with Wella)

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The Winters Family (without Wella)

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