2014 was a busy year, wasn’t it? Between work and travel and events, it was simply packed full of stuff. And somewhere in between all that stuff, I kept committed to activity because it honestly kept me sane– and because I enjoyed it. Now I get to pick through last year’s blog posts and remind myself of my struggles and accomplishments!
I had an adventurous year trying out group exercise classes at the gym. I always find them intimidating at first, but they’re fun! I gave kettlebell class a try, went to a special self-defense class, and started going to a weekly yoga class later in the year.
It was a complicated year for my body image, where mostly I tried to reconcile being strong, active and still fat. I tried to practice radical self-love. Why don’t women’s magazines ever say “Build Bigger Arms” on the cover? Once again I tried tracking protein, and it turned into restricting calories. On the other hand, folks tried to convince me that I was eating too much protein. The only way to win is not to play…
A popular topic for the media this year was hand-wringing about being sedentary at work; standing and treadmill desks became popular. I have mixed feelings about that. One of my most popular posts of the year talked about how all this activity has made me quite fit but hasn’t changed how I look very much, which is not what society tells us should happen. Despite not much change in my appearance, I’m still active because I have a different and effective set of goals.
Interactions with people at my gym were fodder for many posts. Did you hear I was Member of the Month? Farmer’s walks made one woman worry about me. We met newly-nicknamed Form-Correcting Guy, but I haven’t nicknamed this creepy man yet. Apparently being strong means that I’m a little scary and I beat people up? I made a Science Rage post about people who spread “health” misinformation. People outside the gym gave me grief too (stop honking at runners!)
This year I also wrapped up the New Rules of Lifting for Women program (with mixed feelings at the end of it). I’d been looking forward to Stage 6, chinups training, but it didn’t really work out for me. However, I can now carry a man. I also started Stronglifts 5×5 and that’s been pretty interesting– I’m squatting 170lb now and deadlifting 195lb, so I’ve seen some good strength gains. Lifting heavy continues to teach me about what my body can do.
I spent a lot of time with yoga this year, and tried some different things. I went to a new class that was a little strange. I also spent some time thinking about the western practice of yoga (often inspired by talking with Indian colleagues) and how my current practice does very little to honor its history. And after I finished NRoL4W, I spent an entire week doing yoga and it changed me; I am trying hard to commit to a weekly yoga class (when I don’t have workshops scheduled over it).
This summer I swam a lot, and it was great! While the weather held and the pool was open, it was definitely my favorite workout. A big part of that might be that I just swim for time– I have no idea of how far I’m going so there’s no pace pressure!
I kept on running this year. According to my Nike+ tracker, I ran 118 times and 350 miles in 2014. However, I decided I wasn’t really interested in running marathons anytime soon, though at one point I was mistaken for someone running a 50-miler. I trained for (ran 75 miles in March, eesh) and ran my yearly 5k, and took another 3 minutes off my time from 2013, finishing in 36:28. A highlight of the training was going out for a 6-miler and winding up on my butt in a thigh-high snow pile. I bit the bullet and went back to Ye Olde Local Shoe Store, and they didn’t blow me off this time. While I was at it, I finished Season 2 of Zombies, Run! and was super excited for Season 3. Running while traveling is tough; thank goodness for hotel treadmills. (Unless the vacation is in the middle of the woods.)
2014 was great! Hope to see everyone around in 2015. :)