I came back to Eugene Crossfit yesterday after being out of town for three weeks. I hardly worked out while I was away. I'm totally ready to get back into it.

This morning, I went to a strength class and then went for a brisk walk with one of my favorite Crossfit friends. As we were headed back into the box, a lovely group of runners (mainly from the 5am class) ran by and said "Welcome home, Robin!" That greeting made a world of difference in my day.

About a month ago, I was out with someone I care about very much and he asked me when/where was the last time I truly felt like I was home. It took me a long time to answer that question. I had a lot of mixed feelings traveling back to the Midwest. I wondered if I would fall in love with Detroit, or Chicago again, or even Kalamazoo, enough to move back. And although I got a lot done in Detroit, and I visited friends in Chicago, and family in Kalamazoo, it felt like a very lonely trip. My home is here now.

And I don't know how long that home will be Eugene. And maybe home is more about the people you surround yourself with. But it feels really good to be back to ECF. As I was driving back home from the box, I thought about how different my life would be without it. I can't even imagine. I'm a different person - emotionally, mentally, physically. I'm forever grateful for the gift it's given me.

I think this picture shows why I love it so much. And, this will give you a (little) idea of what's to come in the Women of ECF calendar.


Regression (But not for long)

We work so hard to make gains in Crossfit (and in life), and it is so, so easy to lose them. I'm currently in the midst of 3 weeks away from Oregon. 3 weeks away from my normal routine. This is not good for me.

For the first week, I worked in Detroit. This was an amazing and exhausting experience. I did get a chance to work out at a CrossFit that is just opening up - CrossFit Benchmark Workouts - and they are fantastic. I really think they'll make a difference in their neighborhood, and hopefully, the city. The coach knew I was visiting, and welcomed me with a hug. I totally felt like I was home.

Aside from that, I didn't exercise much in the Motor City. I walked a lot - in my boots. But that was about it. I was hoping to make it back to Crossfit, but they have limited hours and I had many appointments. 

From there it was on to Chicago for a completely low-key weekend, which was what I needed. I talked to so many people and learned so much in Detroit. I really felt like I needed a break. I spent time with one of my oldest friends. We talked, went to the movies, played games - it was a good weekend.

Last Sunday, I made it back to Kalamazoo. I hadn't seen my family in a year, so I was looking forward to 10 days with them. Monday morning, I knew I needed to do something physical, so I bundled up and went for a "run" through downtown. I hesitate to call it a run, but I did move as quickly as I could. My heart was beating. I was breathing hard. I needed this.

I made some observations and thought a lot on that run. Smoking is much more prevalent here than it is in the northwest. I noticed a lot more smoking - in Detroit, in Chicago, and in southwest Michigan - than I do in Oregon. We have the same laws - no smoking indoors - but there are a hell of a lot more people smoking outside here. AND IT'S COLD!!! 

Also, exercise is not part of the lifestyle here. Some people do, but a lot more people in the northwest get outside and run or ride their bikes or walk or ANYTHING. I don't see that as much here.

And the third observation, which became very apparent that evening, is the overabundance of carbs. I don't know what got into me, but I ate more cereal and crackers in the first 24 hours at my sister's than I have eaten in the past year. And once I started, I couldn't stop. And I knew what I was doing when I was eating them. They're empty calories. I'm still hungry when I'm done. There's no point in eating them.

But what else is there to do?

And then we made the cookies, and we all know how that story ends.

Anyway, I've felt myself regressing all week. I feel enormous (I know I'm not enormous, but I feel that way).  And this isn't just a physical thing. Yes, I can feel the few pounds I've gained. I can also see my skin reacting. I can also feel the depression setting in. I know how this goes.

So yesterday, the sun came out for a while. It was very, very cold, but very bright. So I took the dog for a walk, then I ran around the block. It was less than a mile, but I ran fast and once again, I felt my heart beating. I breathed hard. I felt more alive. I did the same this morning, but walked and ran a little further. I don't like it, but I know I need it. (I've always meant to check out the Crossfits in Kzoo, but I never quite make it)

And today I managed to avoid eating cookies until 2pm, which is a vast improvement over the past few days. I've also started taking Vitamin D, which I've been told for years to take, but never have. We'll see if that helps.

I fly back to Oregon on Thursday and get back to Eugene on Friday. When I get back, I will work out - a lot. I know how it helps physically (and I need a lot of help in that area), but I also know how it makes me feel. And I need to feel better. I know how to do it. It just takes work.

SO...I'm putting a stop to my regression. I know how I can act. I know how people see me. But that doesn't mean that's how I have to act. It just takes work.

So hard....for so many reasons...during the holidays. Time to work on feeling as happy as I look here: