A few years ago, I unearthed a travel journal from a month-long trip to Europe that I took in 2006. As I reviewed its pages, I was struck by just how many details of the trip I had completely forgotten. And if the memories of a once-in-a lifetime trip that was so impactful to me could fade away – how much of my day-to-day life is lost? Sensations, emotions, achievements, losses, experiences from the mundane to the exceptional, all transforming from that specific moment in time to become that day, that week, that year, that life…

As I get older and gain a better understanding of how fragile, how brief, and how precious life really is, it's become even more important to me to me experience it to its fullest and to try to retain all of those little moments that might otherwise get lost. It's with this idea that I started the process of recording these moments – a travel journal, of sorts.

A travel journal for life.

Thursday, June 5, 2014


I've wavered between various stages of fitness and fatness throughout my life.  As of late, I'm trending more toward the fatness than the fitness.
Congratulations, self.  You are a statistic!
But I'm working really hard to put the brakes on that trend.  I've joined a new gym that I like a lot. I've mostly been working out on my own, but I've ventured into a few of the classes; sticking mostly to the strength training classes since I've been too nervous to commit to an entire class of high-intensity group work at my current level of fitness (or lack-there-of). But yesterday, I felt I'd reached a point where I could break the monotony of solo cardio and venture into group class territory.  I chose cardio tai boxing, which had great reviews from a couple of friends.  I managed to keep up and make my way through the entire class.

After its conclusion, I felt a little pooped, but full of happy exercise endorphins. And upon reflection, was likely feeling a little too big for my britches, too.  There was another class immediately following cardio tai box - Bosu Boot Camp.  I'd done the Bosu several times previously; it was primarily focused on core strength, stability, and strength training. So exercise-endorphin-fueled-me decided it would be an excellent way to round out the intense cardio workout I'd just completed.

To my dismay, I quickly learned that different instructors conduct their classes in very different ways.  This class was less "gentle strength and stability" and more "devil cousin of step aerobics." I should have hit the bricks the moment I realized we weren't picking up weights and the very second the words "alternating-turn-step-hop-overs" were uttered.

As I began quick-ball-change-burbee-jumping-jack-lunging on the devil Bosu, my body began to scream at me "WHAT-FOR-THE-LOVE-OF-ALL-THAT'S-GOOD-IN-THIS-WORLD-ARE-YOU-DOING??!!"

Every fitness instructor worth their salt and any thinking person with a grain of common sense knows to heed the mantra "listen to your body."  But my ego got the best of me and blocked that whiner right out.

"It would be far too humiliating to walk out in front of all of these people, and besides, a little extra cardio won't hurt us." my ego said.

"But you are going to die." insisted my body.

"Nah, we'll be fine." ego countered.

"Fine," said body, "you're on your own.  I'm out."

True to its word, body peaced-out and allowed the workout to be entirely fueled by ego. Only occasionally checking in to remind me "you are going to completely regret this you arrogant nitwit."  When we got home, ego was cautiously smug while body was remarkably reticent - only briefly demanding food before insisting on immediate and intense sleep.

It wasn't until this morning that body let the full extent of its wrath be known.  Initially, it didn't want us to even get out of bed and function at all, but coffee and Advil helped to win that battle. Not to be outdone, body spent the day making things difficult for all parties and being particularly ruthless to ego by making things especially difficult in the bathroom... Let's just say I was eternally grateful for the assist bars in the office handicap-accessible restrooms.

I sent a text to my husband describing my pain he responded simply with one of his favorite reminders: "It's 'cause you're long in toof."

And he's right, of course.

So, the next time I'm tempted to try a marathon cardio session, I'll try to be more mindful of what my body says.  I'll try to remember that I'm trending toward fatness, ego driven, and very simply, "long in toof."


Incidentally, I learned while trying to send Mike a picture of my "Der-Her, I think you are absolutely hySTERical" face in response to his "long in toof" text, that I am not very good at crossing my eyes anymore.

Likely another symptom of being long in toof...

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