Blog 7 Love Will Find A Way

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Hey I know it’s a cheesey title but it fits it really really fits.

A word from Winston Churchill: “Never give up on something that you can’t go a day without thinking about.’  When you love something, when you adore it, you cannot rest until you have made it happen and that is how I feel about trapeze.

It’s been a crazy week but it finished in the best possible way that it could. However let us start at the start. It’s report time at school. This means our workload goes up exponentially and because teachers need time to write their reports a hardy individual such as yours truly can gain some extra days of work as well as writing her own reports. Every year I tell myself to start writing the reports earlier but it doesn’t happen. Mind you after this week? Term Four reports? I’m on it. Check back with me to see if I am true to my word.

So I’ve been working some extra days which impacted on Muscle Up club. My wonderful team allowed me to change the training day from Friday to Monday and Monday’s session was fantastic. I felt like I could take on the world. The friggin ring dip is coming. I know it’s coming. Sam can see it, I can feel it, it just hasn’t arrived yet. In case you are wondering the ring dip is a precursor to the muscle up but that is not what has me obsessed at the moment.

My current craziness all started when my pole teacher happened to mention during one of our classes that she had played on a trapeze. The moment she said the word ‘trapeze’, my ears pricked up and my heart gave a lurch. Oh Trapeze, I thought, there’s a lost love. I made some enquiries about where the lessons were happening but at that point it didn’t look like it would work out. However, the flame had been lit. I thought my trapeze fire was out, but apparently there were embers still burning away and I realised that me and trapeze still had unfinished business.

I can’t remember quite how I got the idea but I thought I still have a trapeze bar from the flying trapeze. I have some slings and some mats, I wonder if I could set it up either at home or at gym. I have started to enquire about an outside mini rig that I could put a trapeze on. I’ve ordered a static trapeze and I can talk about that trapeze like other people talk about their cars. I actually spent more time getting the exact trapeze I wanted than any other purchase I’ve made. I can tell you the colour of her ropes, how long the ropes are, the colour of the bar, the fact that I have pegs either side so I can use her as a double. I may well name her you know. The kicker is the man who is making my trapeze lives down the road and he is a rigger. I thought how did I not know this when I needed a rigger for the flying trapeze!

Sam the man who owns my gym is gorgeous and he said I could set up the trapeze there as long as we were safe, so during the one minute rests between muscle up sets on Monday I was showing him the practice bar. She isn’t as pretty as the one I have ordered but she will do until that one arrives. I brought the mats and slings in on Tuesday. Then instead of me getting to play on it I took the ‘adult’ path which is always, always, always, the suckiest path and I stayed home and wrote school reports. Other people at the gym played and I stayed home and worked. Suck it up Trishy.

Friday came around. I did muscle up club while staring longingly at the trapeze and then went home and I spent all day writing reports with the carrot of an open gym training session in the afternoon and I would get trapeze then. I finished the reports at three thirty and I would need to leave for the gym at 4.00. At a quarter to four while feeding the donkeys and horse I remembered I had to do the second de-licing on one of the donkeys and he was already in the big, hard to catch them paddock, not the little easy one. 45 minutes I spent running around that paddock trying to catch that bugger and I knew there would be no trapeze for Trishy that day.

On a side night it looks like after Friday’s acro class that if I put the teeniest effort in I would have my handstand so I should probably be giving that a little bit of work.

Saturday rolled around and I was taking no chances. I got up at bloody dawn and walked those dogs so that when they gave me the sad face when I left for gym I put up my hand and I said ‘don’t even!”

Got some sad news on the way to gym and gym as always was my therapy. It was like while I am in the car on the way to gym I can be as sad as I like and then when I get out, I shake it off and say it’s gym time and I put my burdens down for an hour or two. I can’t recommend this enough. It doesn’t solve your problems but it makes your problems easier to bear.

Gym was fantastic. We have one girl who just makes jokes and she cracks me up. She’s worth coming all by herself. We have another woman who doesn’t take shit from anybody and her caustic asides have me in hysterics. We have the gym coach who tries to get everyone organized and it’s like herding cats and I think to myself yes, this is my happy place. They also did one of my favourite types of workouts where I can just get myself set up and off I go, so I loved that. But wait there’s more.

At the end of the session when most people had gone home I found myself with a small group of people beside the trapeze. The beautifully set up with a mat underneath trapeze. All of a sudden I was in Heaven. We took turns and we all had a play and moves that I had forgotten came back. All of a sudden I was back doing trapeze with people I liked.

So here’s the thing. Things that you love may not be over. They may be sleeping, or working away in the back ground. I actually think that I am going to get that flying trapeze resurrected one way or the other. I feel like the universe is poking and prodding me in certain directions. I just don’t feel like the chapter is closed.

So the end of my week is me back on static trapeze. My beautiful, beautiful trapeze. I am not dependent on anyone to do it. I don’t have to wait and see if someone wants to give me a lesson, it’s just me and the trapeze. Thank you Universe, you have been very kind this week.

So that was the week that was. Thank you for reading, catch you next week.

 

 

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Blog 6 Milestone Gifts

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I have set myself some big goals. There’s nothing new in that, when I still smoked I knew I wanted to run four marathons in two years and I did it, damn near killed me but I did it. My current goals are a ring muscle up at the gym and an Iron X at Pole. What I am discovering is that on the way to these hefty goals there are milestones that are gifts in and of themselves.

When I said that I wanted a ring muscle up I had no idea what I would need physically to achieve this goal. I made this goal in January. It’s June now, (where the heck is this year going?) and these six months have taught me what I need to achieve this goal.

I need to be able to do ten strict pull ups. I’m currently on five and I have never been able to do that much before setting the muscle up goal. This makes me very happy.

I need to be able to do a ring dip. In January I could barely hold myself up on the rings. Now I can lower myself down aaaand (drum roll please) I am starting to be able to do the lift part of the dip. My coach saw me do this during our Friday Muscle Up club so I know I am not imagining it. It is an amazing feeling to know that you are progressing towards your goal. Something else about this fascinates me. There is no doubt that I am getting stronger, so this whole thing about as we age we get weaker, I’m starting to have my doubts. Maybe people are getting weaker because they are stopping their activities. I am getting stronger, I’m just going to keep saying that because again, it makes me very happy.

I’ve had to do push ups to get stronger so now I can do six proper push ups before I could barely do one. It’s all very cool people, very cool indeed.

I can now see muscles in my arms and my back, that were not there before, this is a side benefit to the muscle up goal. It’s like you order your meal and you are given all of these delicious sides to go with it.

In other matters we had a character building week in gym and I’ve never liked my coach less. Tuesday we had to run 400 metres and then do push presses (I think, it was some lifting move). I thought piece of cake baby I can run forever. The problem was he wanted us to run faster. I thought hey we don’t always get what we want. I figured as soon as I left the gate I would be out of eyeshot and I could go back to my regular plodding pace. I don’t think we had enough people in the class because the coach had time to run out with my friend and I and basically keep hollering at us to go faster and faster. This worked a treat because I’ve never run so fast in my life. It was a miserable experience and I normally love running but it was cool to run faster so maybe I’ll do it again.

Thursday was just cray. We had to do 75 single skips on our right leg then 75 on the left and then 20 forward lunges with weights for five rounds and I hated it. I had read the write up before coming to gym but I am not sure that the coach wrote five rounds on the write up. He says he did, I am not convinced. This work out hurt my knees, made me cranky, the whole nine yards. I did it because I figured he put it in for character testing, are you able to do the sucky workouts or do you just do the fun ones. I think now he did it because it really works each leg but who knows and I never asked, I just did the dam thing. I did it because every time I have run away from a workout I have regretted it, also David Goggins, who I adore, says you should do something that sucks every day so I did that workout. I did discover that skipping on one leg cured my dyscalculia because I did not do one rep more than I had to.

Friday Muscle Up Club was very interesting. I have a very sick dog at home who is starting to respond to medication but our mornings are hard. He was so bad Friday that I didn’t think I would be able to go to Muscle Up Club and then I thought about the last time I had looked after a sick dog, I had quit all of my other activities because it’s so hard to juggle everything. That bastard balance had come back for another nip at me. So I bundled up Fred and said come to gym. My muscle up peeps welcomed me with open arms even though I was a stressed mess. They looked after Fred, he seemed very happy to be cuddled and cosseted and I got a wonderful workout that took all the stress away. This was also the workout where I progressed my ring dip, very cool stuff.

In the world of Pole I found myself in an acro class Friday night where they were doing doubles. There was a time when I would have given an arm and a leg to do this stuff and I watched them Friday thinking, no you’re not strong enough, you’ll hurt them, you’ll drop them and so on and so on. Then the instructor said this is a trapeze move and it was like hearing a distant call and all those old feelings about trapeze bubbled to the surface. I pretty much couldn’t say no. I was terrified that I was going to hurt the instructor but she told me word perfect what I had to do and I did it word perfect and it only lasted a second but for that second I was back doing trapeze moves and I was in Heaven. So that’s been the finish of me, I thought I had put trapeze behind me but Pole keeps bringing it up and it’s obviously a love that I have not totally resolved. So I am now full steam ahead looking at buying my own static trapeze and I will ask my lovely gym coach if I can rig it up at his gym. I need trapeze like other people need air and water. I am a trapeze tragic. Just getting back to the start of this blog. I went to the pole class to move me closer to the Iron X and the milestone gift along the way that I didn’t expect was acro class and the return of my beloved trapeze.

Balance raised it’s ugly head again this week. You work extra and your training suffers. Work extra and keep up the training and all of a sudden, do I even know what my dogs look like anymore? I just had a meltdown Saturday and I thought there is nothing more important to me than those dogs and all of my animals. The Pinery fires taught me that. So I didn’t go to gym, I gave my dogs bloody great walks and spent the day with them. The Holy Grail though is to be able to spend quality time with them, still blitz the work front and get in my training oh and an hour or two on house work would be swell.

So that was the week that was. Thank you for reading, catch you next week.

 

Blog 5 What a Week!

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This week taught me that training will give you highs and lows, you just have to hang in there and keep turning up because you never know what will happen next!.

So Monday was pole and it was a good lesson but not a great one. It was the sort of lesson where you are building your moves but you haven’t made them yet.

Tuesday gym workout was almost unenjoyable. We were doing ladders and they were cool but it was pretty much a lesson in ‘you are the puniest in the gym’. However if I don’t keep rocking up I am not going to get any better. We had all of these barbells laid out at different weights and you had to keep moving forward power cleaning them until you could not go heavier. I got a pb because you get so caught up in everything you go harder than you would have normally but I found it difficult to watch how much stronger other people were. In the same breath though it was also cool to watch them because you realised that this is human potential and maybe one day I will be going heavier and heavier.

I find adult fitness very interesting from the mental point of view. I wonder how many people quit gym and exercise because they see other people improving before they do and being stronger or faster or able to do more moves. I am finding this an incredible workout for my ego, I actually think it is improving my outlook on all sorts of things. To realise you will not be the best but have a go anyway. It certainly makes me empathise with my students when they are disappointed with their achievements.

Wednesday is rest day because of staff meetings so Thursday saw me back in the gym and I have to say I found that experience epic. Regular readers of my blog would know that I have had my tush kicked in muscle up club lately so I have been doing work at home so I can keep up with the other muscle uppers. This homework paid off in spades Thursday morning.

On a previous Thursday Michael the trainer asked me. how many pull ups can you do and I hadn’t been able to do one. It was very embarrassing because previously I had got up to five. He said what happened and I thought to myself, you haven’t done your bloody homework Trish that’s what happened. This Thursday he said Allright lets see if you can do a pull up and if you can we can have some fun. I thought allrighty Trish here’s a second chance, it’s time to redeem yourself. So I went and I did a pull up so I was one for one. Right he says let’s do weighted pull ups. So he found me a cool belt and I put it on and I added weights and stagger me I did weighted pull ups. Huzzah Trishy! I could not have been happier. We added more and more weight until I couldn’t do the pull up. It was a brilliant feeling, I got pictures, I posted it on facebook, people commented on my back muscles and I was a very happy camper. Then something very odd happened.

We went on to the workout. We had to do ten push presses and then a ten metre walking lunge with dumbbells, ten round partner wod. Mel my partner said use the 7 kilo dumbbells you never go high enough. So I did the first round and if we had enough time in two minutes we had to do pull ups. Michael says after the first round you have time, do a pull up. Off I go and I do one. He says you have more in you, do another and I did. He says have you got three in you and I did! The pull ups felt like a stretch. They didn’t seem hard at all I didn’t understand what was happening.

I got to round two and had a complete panic. The lunges were killing me and I thought I can’t do ten rounds of these. Then I thought just do your best. They wouldn’t set ten if they didn’t think you could do ten. After each round I’m still doing the magical pull ups and having no idea how they are happening.

We got to round four and Michael says one round to go. Massive forehead slap, it’s a PARTNER Wod so we do five rounds each not ten. I do the fifth round just about skipping because I had thought I had five more rounds afterwards and now I knew it was the last. This was an occasion when my Crossfit Discalcula pays off.

Thursday night something else really rather significant happened. I went to Pole and in the course of the lesson Leanne the trainer said I want to show you a cool move but first I have to teach you how to fall. Something clicked into place the moment she said that. I had found it very difficult to switch studios and trainers. It’s hard to trust your new trainers, you don’t know how good they are and you have to trust them to teach you things without damaging you. I have met some complete schmucks in my time and it takes me a while now to evaluate someone and say yes they are good I will let them train me or no this person is not good for me don’t go any further.

I liked Leanne the moment I met her but like is not enough to get trust. Many shonky people can be likeable. It’s almost like people earn ticks and crosses. If they get enough ticks you go ahead, enough crosses you stop and find someone else. She welcomed me to her pole studio, that gets a tick. She’s funny, another tick. She helped me train for stomp, another tick. She makes me laugh, more ticks. She’s confident, and lovely, more ticks, but it was only when she said I have to teach you how to fall that I felt a click inside me and I knew that’s it I trust her. It wasn’t even a mental click, it was like my body said ok we can now go forward. I knew she was strong enough to catch me and she was smart enough to protect us where possible from injuries. So that was significant for me because it means I can now go ahead in leaps and bounds instead of hesitating all the time. I’m still not ever going to do the suicide spin. Lets not get too crazy here!

Learning how to fall was scarier than the actual move but I did it. I let her just about toss me over the pole so that I would land properly and if I didn’t know better I would think that she broke my fall because it felt like landing on a pillow. Then because we had all been brave enough to do the learn how to fall thingy she showed us a pole handstand that I had tried before but never succeeded in and that night I got one. I was so rapt. It feels harder than normal ones because one hand is on the pole but it’s a really cool move.

I did Rookie fit on Friday and then muscle up club and it was only me in muscle up club that session so I was stuffed at the end of it but I was able to do some pretty cool drills so I am slowly but surely improving. Sam the trainer had a possible explanation for my magical pull ups on Thursday. You will recall that I had done weighted pull ups first and then doing regular pull ups in the workout, my muscles had found that heaps easier. I’m going to store that piece of information away because I think it’s going to come in handy, Maybe I should be doing a weighted pull up session once a week?

The week just kept giving because I went to a pole class at my studio’s other location and that was fantastic. I had thought it was miles away but it was pretty much only ten minutes on from where I had been training. They have great stairs so I could have used them for Stomp and Katrina was taking the class and I love her lessons. I finally figured out how to bring my hips forward in a move and that meant my leg locked in properly and that was all kinds of cool.

I was only expecting to stay for one hour but there was an acro class afterwards and all of a sudden I found myself in a class where they are teaching handstands, head stands and shoulder stands. There was a time when I had considered paying extra to go to a handstand class and here is my pole studio just offering one and it was a really really good one. I left that studio completely stuffed but completely grateful.

The Saturday workout I was totally rubbish at but to be honest I did not have one piece of energy left. I congratulated myself for turning up and giving it a go and finishing it.

So that was the week that was. Thank you for reading, catch you next week.

 

Blog 4 Roadblocks

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Blog 4 Roadblocks

 

I am fascinated by road blocks in life and how they affect the course of your life. You can be travelling just beautifully and then you get sick, or injured, or your trainer gets sick or injured, or you have an argument with a person and it’s not comfortable to stay where you are. For all of these scenarios a flowchart pops up in my head, one arrow goes to stop training and the other arrow goes to all the other options; Find a new facility, find a new trainer, recover from your injury or face option one – stop training.

I use Bruce Lee as my inspiration. He achieved so much in his short life span and he experienced many road blocks. It is his attitude to those road blocks and how he didn’t let them derail his goals that truly inspired me. When life throws me a curve ball, I say to myself what would Bruce Lee have done? If you’re interested he has written a book about his views on just about every subject you could imagine. It’s a terrific read and for me it is like my bible. It’s called Striking Thoughts, Bruce Lee’s Wisdom for Daily Living.

I myself have faced many roadblocks. I’ve had a major illness which ended up being the path to bendiness because I spent all of my time stretching in the hospital while waiting for appointments. I’ve had a trainer get injured and I had to go and find another one. I’ve had my fair share of arguments and I’m working on that part of my character to see if I can get smarter at dodging them. The Universe has been kind about injuries but she gave me a good dose of surgeries through my illness to compensate.

Each time one of these setbacks occurred I faced the prospect of stopping training. It makes you run an evaluation of why you are training. What are you getting out of it because this is an opportunity to try something new. Each time a roadblock pops up I look at two possible paths before me, stop or find somewhere else to train, stop or find someone else to train with, stop or get your body back into condition, it’s a daunting task. It’s like someone has kicked your legs out from under you and you have to get up, dust off and go back to it. It does make you quite tough though to be able to do this over and over again and you may find that new trainers, new facilities or a new body may bring welcome changes.

Allrighty, the week that was. I was crook for Stomp so that didn’t happen. I was very sad about the money that went down the drain on that one. I’m at a new pole studio and I’m loving my lessons there. I need to work on a little more courage for some of these moves though. I had the offer of being shown a flip on Monday night and I was too scared to try it and I’ve been kicking myself ever since. If my Monday night trainer offers again I’m going to say yes please. Thursday night at Pole was the funniest of nights because this trainer offered to show me a suicide spin and all of my regrets from Monday went out the window. I said quite cheerfully , not on your life. To try and redeem my cowardly self in this trainer’s eyes I attempted the banana split but it had no appeal! Boom! Did you see what I did there??? Three of us were being challenged with the suicide spin and while we were doing that (or not doing that as the case might be), three beginners were doing carousel spins. They were all young, they were all gorgeous and they were doing their spins in sync. It was surreal having them go around and around their poles so serenely and beautifully while our trainer was trying to cajole us into attempting the suicide spin. I tell you that baby isn’t even on my to do list. The suicide spin is on my nup list. I also did a dance class on Thursday and I love those classes. I can be someone else when I do those classes and next week we are doing an exotic routine???? Stay tuned for that one.

Thursday gym was just crazy. It was ten rounds of pull ups pretty much, for each round you had to do 3 pull ups, 7 jumping pull ups, maybe 14 ring rows. I’m not sure on the ring rows or the jumping pull ups, the pain was in the negative pull ups and that’s what I remember. I ended up doing 39 negative pull ups. I took my shoes off in a desperate attempt to remove weight. It was an appalling workout even with the massive amount of scaling I applied to it. I couldn’t even do one strict pull up so God knows what was wrong with me that day. If you were wondering how the hell did she get 39 out of the negative pull ups, it’s because I finished quickly so I got given another three rounds.

Friday was muscle up club and I had managed to do my muscle up homework every single day this week. I really noticed the difference between my performance this week and last week, I was heaps stronger. Hopefully this motivates me to do as much homework this week. Even before this muscle up arrives it’s going to be very cool to be able to do a ring dip. There’s people in the gym who can just do a ring dip no probs and I huff and I puff but nothings happened yet but each week I do feel stronger. Watch this space.

I didn’t have much to give for Saturday’s workout but I feel like I should get brownie points for turning up and having a good go at it. Every workout I go to I learn something new, push a new boundary or find out something about a person I never knew before. So I finished earlier than normal on Saturday and a guy at the gym who I didn’t think gave a stuff asked me if I was ok, as in had I stopped because I was injured. I was seriously chuffed by that. I also got a chance to watch one of the women at Crossfit when I had finished my workout and this woman has the best attitude towards just about everything. She’s married, has a child, she’s a coach, she’s super fit and gorgeous to look at but the reason why I love her is her approach to life. She’s always smiling, she’s never phased by the workouts, she’s uber strong. This is the thing about Crossfit, it introduces you to inspirational people. It is a great community in Crossfit.

A lot of us are doing a rowing challenge tomorrow to raise funds for a young couple who need some help. It should be a fun day.

If I had allowed the roadblocks to stop me I wouldn’t be having any of these experiences now. I would be home sitting on the couch and ‘sitting down in my life’. That’s a quote from Five People You Meet In Heaven. If you get a chance you should read that book, it is amazing!

Thank you for reading, catch you next week.