Snow and Squat-a-thon January!

Hello Blogosphere!

The last few days have been eventful, so let me fill you in!

In my first post of 2014 I failed to mention that Husband and I are doing a squat-a-thon challenge this month!

I looks a little something like this (We are squatting at the Advanced level):

We have only missed one day, yesterday, due to the fact that both of us have caught a bug! It has almost been a week since my last Crossfit class due to the snow and now being sick! I’m really missing my workouts so we ended up blasting through the 40 squats and 7 burpees tonight even through our sickness. I look forward to those 50 burpees…

I also failed to mention that Husband competed for the first time in a Crossfit Partner Throwdown last Saturday. Yes, they were boy and girl teams. Yes, I chicken out and I REGRET BEING A CHICKEN but I loved watching he and his team mate kill those WOD’s. I was so proud of them.

After I watched Crossfit from 9am-2pm I was feeling a pretty lazy so I decided to take my first run of the New Year! It was a slightly chilly 42 degrees but I actually didn’t mind it, because I was running this route for the first time. I feel like running on a new route for the first time always make running more exciting. However, it was irritating because my phone died in the middle of my run and didn’t track the entire 3 miles I did… Overall, I felt it was a pretty good run to start the New Year, especially since I haven’t run since October!

Then all day Sunday, it snowed and we finally got our first BIG snow at our house. I also learned that snow is pretty and everything, but it is a giant pain in the rear. Did I also mention that with the windchill it was -30 degrees? Yeah, I used a vacation day and decided not to leave my house on Monday.

This is looking up our walkway after Husband shoveled it.

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It was about 9 inches in shallow areas and a foot of snow in others!

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Lets talk a little bit more about why cold/snow sucks and why Crossfit is amazing (Yes, they coincide). Due to this lovely weather we’ve been having, the battery in my car went *kerplunk* and died yesterday morning while I was trying to get my car warmed up before my icy drive to work. Unfortunately, my car was parked behind Husband’s car in the driveway. Which meant that in order for me to get to work, we had to move my car. By move my car, I mean Husband and I had to push my car over ice and snow in the -5 degree freezing cold.

-5 DEGREES Y’ALL. I’ve never seen that temperature IN MY LIFE…. and this -5 degrees did not include the windchill.

While me and husband were out in the freezing cold trying to force my car over snow mounds, it took me back to the last time I was pushing a car, which was actually during a Crossfit class. It was then I realized my true appreciation for Crossfit. I remember that day at class vividly and me thinking “Oh my gosh, I can’t push a car. I don’t know how I am going to do this.”

Never say can’t, my friends. Because I did push the car, at Crossfit, and then again in a real life situation. Moral of the story – Keep a can-do attitude and go to Crossfit more.

Anyway, Husband drove me to work and then luckily he was able to stay home and take care of our little car situation and everything is thankfully back up and running smoothly. I don’t know when I will be back up and running smoothly again. I hope it’s soon, because being sick is hindering my muscle development.

Happy Hump Day y’all!

Conquering A Negative Mind.

Since ya’ll have taken this Crossfit journey with me I thought I would update you on a few recent small, personal milestones. When I first started Crossfit I couldn’t lift a barbell over my head much less, 20 pounds. I was not strong at all. Still, I’m not hitting an RX or lifting tons of weight but I am starting to be able lift more, and more, and more and my mind is finally grasping the concept that I can do more, that I am stronger.

Tuesday I did a 7 minute warm up with just the barbell:

3 deadlifts, 1 hang clean, 3 push presses

Every 60 seconds.

I was terrified of the push press because last I checked my 3 rep max was a measly 53 pounds. Thank goodness I made it through with a naked barbell, but I actually felt like I cheated myself because to be honest I was just being a wimp too cautious.

Thursday rolls around and I see that we are going to do the same warm up. So, I stop being a wuss too cautious and weighted my bar with 20 pounds (53 altogether, MY PREVIOUS 3 REP MAX).

IT FELT SO GOOD and quite honestly I felt like a beast.

I think I have finally conquered my Push Press fear and the negativity that was looming behind it. Sometimes, it seems that you actually have to have that “just do it” mentality. So, I did. Thursday ended up being a pretty big day for me. I graduated 15 lb dumbbells to 20 lb dumbbells, I learned how to Skin The Cat (no, not actually skinning a cat… that is so not right) and I dead lifted my own weight (I did not PR but I took it slow and got to a good point). Also a couple of weeks ago I did my first handstand push up. I can do two without wanted to pass out from being upside down. I find that is a pretty big deal for me.

So, I’m normally not one to take a bazillion pictures of myself doing this stuff, but I got a little obsessive and proud the last few weeks so… here they are.

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I have really been trying to keep Husband and I active. It is so easy to come home from work and sit on the couch (if we don’t have Crossfit that night). The last few weeks have been like this. We come home and either go to the pool or sit on the couch. So, after this lovely vacation week I am really going to start focusing on running again. I really miss it. Yesterday, I ran my first straight 5k in 4 weeks. 4 WEEKS. That is pretty horrible, so my goal after we get back from Georgia is to get back into running (I know, I know it’s not the first time I’ve posted about my lack of running). In other fitness news… Yesterday before our run, Husband had a Toastmasters event so I took it upon myself to sign up for some Free Yoga under the Arch.

WOW.

I loved it. It was so wonderful because The Arch is pretty much my favorite thing about St. Louis. Getting a good morning stretch with my favorite thing about this city was just what I needed. It gave me a moment to realize that even though I am extremely homesick and all I really want to do is go home, I still love it here too. That I have wonderful friends here, a wonderful life here, and an amazing husband to share it with. I have so much to be thankful for.

My wonderful friend Alisha snapped this of me without my knowledge. As usual I am admiring the Arch.

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Have A Lovely Week and a Safe 4th of July! I AM GOING HOME!!!!!!!

First Race of the Year!

It has been so long since my last post -too long- really. There have been some exciting things going on! I got a job and even though it is temporary, it has been nice to be back in the working world. I do miss blogging though! I just haven’t quite had the time lately. We have been doing Crossfit 3 times a week and trying to run on our “off” days and I have done wonderfully at keeping up the house/making dinner and having it nice most of the time (with the help of Husband, of course). Sunday is my only day to sleep in so usually I fully embrace it when it rolls around. Except for last Sunday…
We ran our first race of the year last Sunday and I am so glad we picked this one! Being the first people at the St. Louis Zoo was really cool. We didn’t have to fight to the front to get a good look at the Gorilla’s, Sea Lions, Tigers, Lions etc. It was lovely. We didn’t get to spend much time there after the race though, so we are definitely going back ASAP.
The race itself was awesome. There were over 2000 participants! The track was a little hillier than I am use to but I feel like I rocked that race to the best of my ability. I did my first mile in 7:52 (which still isn’t my personal best mile, but it was impressive -to me- nonetheless), but then the hills began in the 2nd mile and my pace dropped to an 8:30. Still, I ended up running the 5k in 26:11 and placing 12th out of 175 women in my age group (25-29). I was extremely proud of myself. I still am. For some reason though, it was tough. The hills plus the humidity definitely gave me a challenge. There was a point in my run where I could feel myself getting tired but I kept pushing. Once I see the finish line, I usually speed up, but this time was different I WAS TIRED so I cruised my way through and ran straight for some water. The post-festivities were a blast. They had a breakfast out for us with LOTS of chocolate milk (which was AWESOME for refuel). They also had a fire hydrant spraying water out like a sprinkler and I ran through it like a 5 year old child. It felt so good. It had been almost 8 months since my last race and I was ready for this one. We had such a good time and running with my husband is my favorite. Pushing each other and believing in each other is one of the best things about working out as a couple. I don’t know when our next race will be but I am excited to try and set some new goals and push myself a little harder next time.
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Happy Memorial Day! We’ve had a pretty awesome weekend! We had our first visitors up to St. Louis! It was so much fun! We started with the tour at Budweiser, hung out at Laclede’s Landing, listened to music at Oyster Bar, relaxed at the pool, had drinks on the roof top at Moonrise hotel, and had an amazing fancy Italian dinner at Gian Tony’s. Our weekend was super successful. I am so not ready to go to work tomorrow! I hope you had a wonderful weekend with friends/loved ones. Hold each other tight because we have people out there sacrificing for our safety and freedom. Have a wonderful Tuesday tomorrow!

Ten Things I’ve Learned as a Trailing Spouse

For those of you who have been the trailing spouse, you may have different experiences than me. However, us trailing spouses all know it is very difficult and one of the most stressful things a couple could/will go through. Let me start by defining what makes a “trailing spouse”… it is pretty much exactly as it sounds. One who follows their husband/wife to a new place/state/country in lieu of that spouses career(or other) opportunities. I’m not about to glorify it either. It is tough stuff. I have only moved to a new state, I can’t imagine moving to a new country. Now, everyone’s situation is different. Sometimes both people in the couple think that moving would be the best thing ever. I’m not going to lie, Daniel had to do a lot of convincing to get me to leave the familiarity of my beautiful Southern city. I finally thought that it might be a good idea to experience something new and we high-fived on moving ourselves out to St. Louis. Then it began happening. My favorite apartment I have ever lived in was bare and before I knew it I was waving goodbye to my Chattahoochee River bank. It was all so exciting at first. I felt like a grown up spreading my wings and flying. I am still making some major adjustments in this move, but so far I have experienced and discovered so much.

Ten Things I have discovered in my experience as a ‘trailing spouse’

1.) There is a “honeymoon” phase with your new city.

-Yeah, it was all fine and dandy until it was cold like…. all the time. We have had a blast though. We have gone to carnivals and festivals, made new friends, and explored a lot. Luckily, we still have SO MUCH to explore here. I will say I am extremely happy that winter is over so the real fun can begin. Like a relighting of the Honeymoon Phase!

2.) Getting a job is 100 times harder without the connections and networks you had back home.

-Trust me on this one. The fact that I am somewhat floundering my way through life is a little depressing. I have applied and applied and applied but no one seems to be biting at the bait. Apparently, I need explore some other opportunities and maybe try to really find out what I want in life.

3.) You will compare your new state to your old/”home” state.

-I have looked and looked and FINALLY I have found some acceptable (by my southern standards) chicken wings. They still aren’t as good at the ones back home, but the Italian here is definitely better than Italian in Atlanta (sorry I’m not sorry).

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4.) Finding friends can actually be easier than you thought.

-I was lucky enough to know people who knew people who lived here before we moved (thank god). BUT. There is also this awesome site called Meetup.com. Yes, its like online dating for friends but it has been so worth it and there is always some kind of “Meetup” going on. There are of course specific categories as well such as, a running group, volleyball group, anime groups, rock climbing groups, book junkie groups etc. etc. usually if you name it, there is probably a group for it and if there is not… you can create your own. 🙂

5.) Being a housewife is neat… that is, until people start frowning upon the fact that all you do is laundry, cook, and clean.

-Umm, yeah. I have enjoyed my time away from the workplace. My house is always sparkly, my bed is always made, my laundry is always clean (and folded), dishes are always done, my dinners are planned, my kitchen is always stocked, wine isn’t needed (as much) anymore, I’m thinner from extra time spent working out, all in all I do a damn good job at being a housewife. I definitely don’t want it to go unnoticed, but there comes a time when people start asking “what do you do” and that’s when I start to feel inadequate. All I really want to say is I’M WORKING ON IT, PEOPLE. All I ask is that you give me a break. I am doing the best I can with what I have (in the job searching department).

6.) It challenges you and your spouse; positively and some times not-so-positively.

-You have your ups and downs. As the trailing spouse it is so hard to control the “Well, if we hadn’t moved…” argument at times. AVOID THROWING THIS NUGGET AT YOUR SPOUSE. I’m learning now that it hurts your spouse to be resentful and use it as leverage. I am guilty of it, and honestly there probably isn’t a trailing spouse out there that hasn’t said something along the lines of that sentence (or insinuated it). As far as the “ups” go, you really, REALLY have to rely on each other. For everything. And it is a good thing. Daniel and I have done an awesome job of spending time together, exploring new things together, learning new things together, trying new things together. We are all we have and it has brought us closer as a couple.

7.) Gives you a chance to reinvent yourself.

-Thinking about it I haven’t actively changed myself. I just AM myself, here and now. Who I was at 16 doesn’t matter to anyone I have met here because I’m not that person anymore. I am stripped of anyone knowing my pointless past dramas or having “history” in a  friendship. That, in itself will reinvent YOU.

8.) You will appreciate the “comfort” of/gain pride for your home state.

-I love the city of Atlanta more than I ever have, because I have been given the beautiful/not-so-beautiful gift of missing it. I miss everything about that city from the red Coca Cola glasses you get in EVERY restaurant, to the banks of the Chattahoochee, to the beauty of a spring day in Piedmont Park. I was meant for that city and it was meant for me. I have no doubt in my mind that one day we will reunite.

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9.) Embracing new places is refreshing. 

-The Arch is possibly the COOLEST structure I have ever seen. I honestly can’t get enough of it. I love taking pictures of it and I seeing it all lit up at night. It reminds me of why I decided moving would be a good idea. To explore life in new places. To get to know a new city and fall in love with a new place. I’m still in the very VERY early stages of “falling in love” with St. Louis (mostly because I’m still pretty homesick). However, walking through Soulard the other day I couldn’t help but adore the old timey feel of the city. It gave me the same feeling I get when I see the skyscrapers of Midtown Atlanta towering over Piedmont Park.

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10.) It has cured me of shyness (I think).

-I have found that I have A LOT to say these days. I will talk to almost ANYONE. I can’t decide if it is because I am hungry for human interaction or if I really have always been this outgoing/friendly and just never noticed. Anyway, making friends has been relatively easy for me. I suppose I am one of the lucky ones because I could just talk all day if you let me and really not about anything specific.

Moving is extremely difficult but it is also fun, confusing, exciting, new, and challenging. It puts you in situations you never would have dreamed of, you experience different people, cultures, ways of life. You find that relying only on your spouse is hard and awesome all at the same time. It’s all a growing/learning experience and while it’s been tough, I’m glad we’ve experienced it together.

One thing that will FOR SURE never change: I will ALWAYS be a serious ATLANTA BRAVES fan. ❤

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A Face Lift

I thought it was time for me to give my blog a mini face lift! A new name, a new feel, a new purpose? Not much a difference, I just thought that since we are no longer really considered newly weds it was time to take my blog name and feel to a different place. Certainly all of my past posts from “Life after I Do” are still attached to this blog, but future posts might be less focused specifically on life after marriage and more focused on hobbies, running, my new adventures with CrossFit, exploring this new city of ours, and my new found love for cooking (so technically, it’s still about life after ‘The Wedding’ on a more watered down level). Don’t expect topics and writing to change too drastically, I am still ‘me’ after all and I don’t mind blabbing about our new couch or washer or how much I absolutely adore and appreciate my Husband every now and then (he deserves it). I guess the newest thing going on in life is the fact that we moved. It has been tough so far. The Midwest is definitely a different place. When we first moved here I felt like it was going to be pretty much the same, but then after a while I began to realize differences.

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But mostly I have realized that I truly am a Southern Girl and I always will be. I like wearing big jewelry, curling my hair, wearing make up to the grocery store, there is noting like red nails and red lipstick with a Braves ballcap. Oh, yeah and rhinestones, lots of rhinestones and pearls. I like my tea sweet and my chicken fried.

Southern Girls LOVE Their Pearls

Southern Girls LOVE Their Pearls

But.

I don’t mind dirt, I love to camp and fish, sports are my favorite, I will fight to the finish when I run a race. I can’t wait to plant my first garden. I don’t mind working hard and getting sweaty and I absolutely adore a good hike or a swim in the river. I love my high heels but I also LOVE my cowgirls boots.

That’s the beauty of Southern girls. We like to get pretty most the time, but we can be tough as a bull.

Welcome to Glitz & Grit

Bless your hear! Hang up your boots and stay a while….

From the Outside Looking In.

I guess I never thought about how much I would actually miss my home. I was told I would, but I have gained more pride about my roots than I ever thought I would. Most people who live in/around the metro area of Atlanta are transplants, and sure, I grew up outside of the perimeter but I am a true blue Georgia Peach. I made small trips to Atlanta with my parents for sporting events/the Olympics and explored Atlanta before I even had a license thanks to my older boyfriend at the time. I remember falling in love with it. Specifically Piedmont Park, in which  my love affair will never end. I knew I would miss the people, but I also knew I was happy to be leaving some people behind. As a whole, I miss that city and I have more Atlanta pride than I ever did when I lived there. I don’t specifically know why. I suppose that with most things you don’t really know what you’ve got until its gone. I love Atlanta, and I want to eventually end up back there but if given the chance to go back home and stay right now, I probably wouldn’t take it. Not because I don’t love my city, but because I get the chance to see something else and explore different places, meet different people, see different cultures. I may seem slightly miserable at times, and yes Atlanta will always be the best city in the world to me, but I am actually quite happy. St. Louis is so very different. It’s got old town charm and some killer parties. The neighborhoods here are just incredibly interesting. Every one specializes in something, it seems. I still haven’t explored enough of St. Louis to sing about it’s wonderful offerings, but I know that I will like it here. It’s just such a different way of living. Wide open spaces are definitely hard to come by unless you go way outside the city. Houses are built right on top of each other. It’s like Virginia Highlands but EVERYWHERE and much older. I still really haven’t gained enough confidence to just go out and drive around by myself. If I go anywhere alone it is usually the mall or the grocery store. I imagine this will change once I get a job or finally get use to the multiple highways. St. Louis is surely growing on me, but I won’t ever miss the chance to proudly sport my Braves hat, do the chop, and represent my city.

Piedmont Park

Piedmont Park

aquarium

Olympic Park Bricks

Olympic Park Bricks

and the hommme of the BRAAAAVES! lol

and the hommme of the BRAAAAVES! lol

Exploring

We have been so lucky to be able to take full advantage of our weekends to explore the city. It has been such a blast so far! Friday we spent it exploring a couple different restaurants in Maplewood as well as deciding on a living social deal to go to Jumpin’ Jupiter. Which was pretty fun and last minute so it was all spontaneous. For those of you who don’t know, St. Louis is FULL of different neighborhoods and restaurants. For my Georgia friends It’s like Old Roswell/Virginia Highlands but EVERYWHERE and all of them are different in their own ways.

The pretty bar at Jumpin Jupiter

The pretty bar at Jumpin Jupiter

Saturday our awesome new friends invited us out to the Delmar Loop to enjoy the Ice Carnival and Festival. We had a blast! There was so much to see and do and we even got lucky with the 60-65 degree weather! They had a bar crawl that was putt putt themed and a lot of the bars crafted putt putt holes which formed a course of 12 holes. We only got to like 7 or 8, but it was really fun and relaxed. We also got to visit the roof top of the Moonrise Hotel. Complete with a bar, a skateboard ramp, and an awesome view of St. Louis and the human dog sled races going on below. We really had an amazing time and I can’t wait to explore more neighborhoods around here.

Roof top of the Moonrise Hotel

Roof top of the Moonrise Hotel

Tonight we have been invited to a wine club meeting by our friends. It is going to be held in a 135 year old building displaying works of art from local artist. Everyone either brings a bottle of wine or an appetizer that everyone can try. Since its our first time we have decided we should bring both. I’m really excited and after my work out today I have to get out and get our groceries so I can make our appetizer.

We bought a Groupon with our friends for a fancy Brazilian restaurant and will be doing that this Friday. I’m really excited! We’re just living it up out here!

I have gotten homesick. I knew it was coming eventually. Yesterday I had a little moment. I just wanted to go home so bad and I really missed my mom and dad. Today isn’t as bad but I’m definitely missing my family. Hopefully our new friends and the anticipation of a busy, exciting weekend will help. Hope you are all feeling fine and having a lovely Tuesday!