Saturnalia was the Roman festival honoring the god Saturn (duh) with parties, gifts, gambling, and owners serving their slaves (sound like Christmas and Boxing Day to anyone?). It fell on or around Dec 17th and lasted between 3 and 7 days depending on who was emperor at the time. It was a national holiday for Rome, meaning the government shut down and people partied it up. On the Julian calendar, Saturnalia fell on or around Dec. 25th. As Christianity became the Roman religion of choice, Saturnalia was re-adapted to fit the Christian church calendar. In any case, it was a celebration of the days getting longer and the darkest days of winter passing by.
Whatever holiday you celebrate-Saturnalia, Yule, Christmas, or Festivus, I hope you had or are having a lovely one. I'm hanging out inside my house with a bunch of highly sugared, deeply greedy, suddenly unbelievably mercenary little rugrats. A small sampling of the carnage:
Radio controlled cars. Both antennas are already broken.
We had Christmas with the ILs yesterday. My kids were appropriately excited and thankful (for which I am glad-they might be monsters for me, but at least they're polite in social situations). Today? Their behavior is shameful. Sneaking candy before breakfast (I asked them to not eat the candy before breakfast-not an unreasonable request), breaking toys, leaving things all over the place, and just generally being insanely loud and irrational. At the moment they are "napping" which involves jumping up and down and screaming, then falling and hurting themselves. Napping also involves waiting for me to get in the shower at which point all children (who protested that they absolutely did NOT need to go to the bathroom) design a coordinated group poop which requires me to wrap myself in a towel and drip down the hallway to wipe their butts. Apparently the shower turning on is a powerful laxative.
I did not get my husband a gift. You know, that whole 270 bottles of whiskey thing? That's going to cover a lot of holidays. He did get me a gift. Here's a picture. I laughed pretty hard. You will too if you're aca-awesome.
What? You have juice pouches and Rocky!
I got myself a little Saturnalia gift in the form of a goal journal. Food and workout tracking for the New Year. I've fallen pretty hard of the wagon a few times in the last few weeks and I'm starting to feel it physically. I've seen pretty substantial gains in my running fitness over the last month or so, but that's going to stop if I can't lock down my nutrition. I want to do it, and my gym owner has agreed to be my conscience going into this project.
Big things could happen this winter. This spring could be my best racing season yet. The path to that place is clear and simple: Live well.
Super trite. But it has to be true. The CrossFit Open is in March. I could be in a place to be my very best by then with some well placed effort now. I'll amend that by saying I have no interest in actually competing in the Games. None. Still, I'd like to make a good showing for the box.
I have a goal 5k in February...there's a PR there. I can feel it. Every time I run, I can feel it.
The Point Bock is March 1st. It's high time for a new 5 mile PR as well. My best there is about 48 minutes. If I keep up my speed work, could I hit sub-45?
A Ragnar friend implied that with all the races on my spring calendar, a sub-2 hour half should be in my future. It sounded crazy at the time, but why? The Dam to Dam in Des Moines was always a 20k, but this year they are making it a half marathon...there's a lot of downhill on that course, maybe it's a sign? Or the Cellcom, site of my best half time of 2:12-a race day that included running straight into the howling winds of hell for the last three miles...if the weather is favorable for once, could that be the one?
A lot of what keeps me from achieving my goals is fear. Fear of failing. With runs it's fear of running completely out of gas and not being able to finish. Thing is, I've never really pushed myself during a race. I've bullied myself into finishing races when I wanted to quit (Grandma's 2013, anyone?), but I've never truly pushed the limit. I've run hard, but I've never finished a race feeling like I left it all out on the course. Granted, many times I have to drive home and pay a sitter then care for three highly energetic children for 18-24 hours, so leaving it all on the course is ill advised. Still, I've never gone balls to the wall in a 5k. Not once. Isn't that sad? I don't even know where my limit is. Might be time to find it.
I have no intention of truly racing every event I've signed up for. Most of the running I do is for the experience (and the medal and t-shirt and beer-I have priorities). I train for my sanity and for some quiet time with my thoughts...or with loud angry music.
All these things begin with fuel. The right fuel. Whole food. I've put together 3 months of whole food meals starting Jan. 1. We'll be making old favorites and getting some new culinary experiences. Eating well and pushing my limits. The plan for 2014. Just because I'm getting old doesn't mean I can't get (more) awesome.
I'm thinking of taking pictures of my food all day and blogging it. Three months of pictures of my lunch. That is going to be boring as fuck. Better than cluttering up Facebook with it. Might also inspire me to make my plate pretty, and presentation counts. Or so I hear.
If you've been thinking about keeping a fitness journal, might I recommend JournalMenu ?
They are the best.
During the Lurong Challenge I had a sweater project to keep my hands busy. It took me the whole challenge to finish it, and I wore it to the afterparty.
Nine weeks of work. That shit is handcrafted.
So I obviously need a busy hands project for Balls Out New Year 2014. I am a member of a sock knitting club (I know. Lame-o McLamerson.) for 2014 and I started early with these babies:
Solfar by Cookie A in Tardis Blue from StitchJones
These bitches are being finished TO. DAY.
I love hand knitted socks. They are warm and infinitely more awesome that store bought socks. You laugh it up. By the end of the year I'm going to have a drawerful of woolies custom made for me by me. When I get my first real pull-up this spring, I might do it in hand knitted socks.
A shiny New Year to everyone reading (all 4 of you). Go out and push your limits!