Tag Archives: motivation

Back on Track

Today was the first time I had to hang my head and send an e-mail to a professor that I am embarrassed of.

For those that have been around, you know I’m starting my second year of grad school for my master’s. That means that I am working on a thesis since I want to go on for my PhD and most schools want a thesis, not comps scores.

Middle of last spring, I was super motivated and typed up a big long thesis proposal. The professor I wanted to work with is going on sabbatical this fall, and I was a little nervous he wouldn’t want to take on another project. However, I had a little edge over others.

Mr. A graduates in May. That means we could be moving who knows where for a job for him. So unlike many other master’s students that could possibly stretch this out for an additional third year, I don’t have that luxury. I HAVE to be done in May. That means a thesis written, revised a million times, and defended by May.

So I have an extra push to get this business done.

So after hearing my proposal, some discussion, and realizing that I would not be wasting his time by dragging this out any longer than necessary, he agreed.

I should also mention that I adore this professor. He is brilliant and kind and encouraging and studies/teaches the same subjects I’m interested in. I feel honored that he agreed to be my thesis director, and also a bit nervous and do not want to disappoint him.

But, as you all know, this summer was…not ideal. Stepmom did that terrible thing that I try to block out and any sense of normality for me went out the window.

I was still having tot each my summer class, be a student in a very intense 4 week summer course, along with all the other responsibilities an adult has. Add in the additional stress of that event, and any spare time I had I was trying to relax and regain sanity.

Well, since professor is going on sabbatical, we had agreed that I would have a very detailed, 8-10 page outline for him by the start of the semester.

Guess who doesn’t have that, or even anything remotely close to that?

*hangs head in shame*

So I emailed him this morning to apologize and ask if he wanted me to send it to him once I got one done, or to just meet with my second reader and get her input on it all and we would meet again in the spring.

He hasn’t responded yet and my stomach is in knots because I feel like I let him down. Mostly, I’ve let myself down.

Motivation to do anything more than absolutely necessary has been minimal and I need to get my act together. I have only one semester of classes left and then a semester of thesis hours and I have to be completely finished in those two semesters.

Hopefully he understands and isn’t regretting working with me. I WILL have a lot to show him when he returns in January and hopefully he is impressed. Hopefully.

So any thoughts of motivation and encouragement that you can spare, would be greatly appreciated. Mostly so I don’t have to hide from him come January. And so my husband doesn’t kill me for not being ready to graduate in May.

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Home Alone

So I’ve talked a lot about the fact that Mr. A is gone this summer.

I’ve blogged it. I’ve tweeted it.

I’m working on not tweeting it constantly because seriously, none of you want to keep read 140 character laments about missing my husband. Eventually you would start rolling your eyes and telling me to get a life. So I’m trying to keep the “missing him” tweets to a minimum. You’re welcome.

Some of you have been very sweet and asking how I’m doing and all that and I thought I’d fill you all in on what it’s like to be living alone for the first time in my life. (I lived in a dorm with 300 other people around me and then when I moved off campus, it was a four bedroom apartment, so I’ve never lived truly on my own before.)

Strangely? I kind of like it.

But shhhhhh.

I feel guilty saying it.

And I do miss my husband. A lot, actually. He’s my best friend and about the only person I know that I can spend days and days with and not want to scream. That’s true love folks.

But I like coming home and having the place to myself and to do what I want. Not like Mr. A tells me I can’t do anything, but I guess just the feeling of not worrying about anyone else’s time frame or schedule or mood is nice. If I’m cranky after work, I can just come home and veg on the couch and not talk to anyone.

I’ve also been much better about keeping the apartment straightened up now that I’m home alone. No idea what this means since Mr. A is the neater one so you’d think I’d be more concerned with neatness when he’s home. Who knows. But the fridge and freezer are cleaned out and the bathroom is all shiny and my clothes are put away. Maybe I just have too much free time.

I should be working on packing. I should be going through the bags and boxes that never got unpacked when we moved here, so obviously those things just need to be donated or tossed because if I haven’t touched it or missed it in a year, then I’m not taking it to the new apartment. Don’t need to start off the new place with clutter. Please don’t report me to Hoarders.

Also, since packing will mostly be left up to me, I need to start working on it now so on moving day, Mr. A and I just have to move big stuff and we can get things put away quickly so all of the unpacking isn’t left to me. I don’t unpack well. (See: boxes and bags that haven’t been touched in a year…)

I’ve been watching a fair amount of Netflix. This would be awesome except that during my 5 months unemployment stint, I watched Netflix all day long, so the shows and movies that I still want to watch are limited. I need some more shows to be added so I have something new to watch.

A current downfall of being home alone is that I’m fairly jumpy and it doesn’t take much for me to be scared.

And the fact that a new neighbor moved in and he has an ankle bracelet doesn’t help me. I have to keep reminding myself that the crime couldn’t have been too bad or he would be in jail, let alone be allowed to move to a new apartment.

I also check that the front door is locked all the time. Never had a problem since living here, but knowing that I don’t have Mr. A here as an extra protection, I’m probably overly cautious.

So all in all, being home alone hasn’t been too bad.

BUT, I’ve gotten to see Mr. A on the weekends. Last week, I went to Mville with him after our anniversary weekend because I was off Tuesday and Wednesday. Next week, I’m off Tues-Thurs, so I will be heading there after work Monday and then driving up before work on Friday. So it’s not like we don’t see each other.

I think when he goes to Other State in July, then it will be different.

We went to Best Buy tonight and bought a webcam so we can video chat when he’s gone. He also wants me to put together our digital picture frame so he can take it with him.

Might sound bad, but I think he’s having a harder time with being apart than I am. We were apart for almost a year and a half while we were dating, and I was the one that was gone, so to me, a summer of separation with a few visits and knowing I will go visit him in Other State makes it not so hard on me. He’s been working his butt off at the firm, and while he loves the work, I think being stressed makes him wish he got to come home to his wife instead of his mom and brother.

That’s where we are. As I look around I realize that I have a lot of packing and I MUST start this week. This is going to be a beast to do alone. Anyone want to come help? I’ll supply margaritas and food? I’ll even make you your dessert of choice? Any takers? Bueler?

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Filed under Home Sweet Home, Life After College, Life in Law School (even if I'm not in it), Married Life

Guest Post- Get Started

A few weeks ago, you may remember this little post of mine. I NEED to be working out and eating healthier, and I figure there are others trying to do the same, so why not help each other?

I’m hoping to get some more posts or figure out ways to share other helpful exercise tips and healthy recipes, so if you have some, feel free to e-mail me.

Well, here is the first installment of that. D.A.R from Midwest Paradise said she would help. She is an avid runner and she said she would be willing to do a couple posts of how she started, some tips she has and how she overcame the obstacles to keep running. I think this is great for starters like myself to find a reason to get running. Who couldn’t use a little more “me” time?

Enjoy and visit her blog. It’s wonderful!

*******************************

On July 27, 2008, I made a decision that changed my life. I got off of the couch and went for a run.

Despite my lethargic tendencies in the more recent years, I have always been athletic. I played several sports until middle school when I decided to devote myself full time to swimming. I earned a full ride scholarship to college and got to see the country {and England!} via airports, Embassy Suites and swimming pools. With my body fat hovering somewhere under 10%, I ate like a frat boy and lost weight accidentally.
Then on December 14, 2004, I was given a death sentence. At least, a swimming career death sentence. At the time, they felt like the same thing. I was shivering on the exam table in the orthopedic surgeon’s office when I heard “no more, you are done”. With my fifth knee surgery scheduled, I had to hang up my goggles.For nearly four years, I did nothing. I was bitter, I was angry and I sure as hell was not going to work out.
But in July of 2008, I needed to. I attribute much of it to needing an outlet for my stress and an excuse to get out of my house as my husband’s deployment to Iraq in September 2008 was looming all too close. But I think a tiny part of my sudden urge to lace up my {ill fitting and not at all designed for running} shoes and hit the pavement was to reclaim my life. I missed “athletic”, “in shape” and “healthy” being part of my identity. Thankfully, mother nature kept me slender, but I knew that my metabolism wouldn’t be around forever.
So, run I did. At least, to the end of the street. Approximately four driveways down. And then I was out of breath, sweaty, dizzy and wanted to die. I sat down on the curb while my husband debated whether or not to call an ambulance. After a few minutes, I got up and “jogged” another 100 or so yards. And then stopped to stretch. This repeated for twenty minutes, at which time, I am fairly confident I completed exactly 1 mile.
Over the next two months, this little exercise in humiliation, sweat and nausea repeated itself until I could run five miles. It was not fast, and it was not pretty, but I was a RUNNER!
Despite a few set backs and a running hiatus here and there, I have been running for two years now. I have finished two 5ks, two 10ks, a 10 mile trail race and two half-marathons. I have horrible runs. I have boring runs. I have runs that I can barely pry myself out of my bed to complete. But I have also had some magical runs. Runs that make me feel like I am a little kid again, full of energy and life. Now I have my husband hooked on racing and we are looking forward to a long life together…running, racing, maybe even sitting on the curb down the street. And it feels great.
It isn’t always a fun road, but it is always worth it. Some of the best things I have learned in the last two years as I have gone from couch potato to half-marathoner/running addict:
1. Get rid of the guilt. Yes, you will have crappy runs. Yes, you will be slower than other people. Yes, you may have to take walk breaks {or sit on the curb!}. But you are out there moving. Don’t feel guilty for what you aren’t doing, be excited about what you are doing!
2. Celebrate the little accomplishments. Did you just run 10 minutes straight for the first time? Conquer a crazy hill near your house? Finish your first race? Celebrate!

3. Bribe Yourself. For me, knowing that there is a reward {other than the obvious like the number on the scale or on your timex at the end of a run} helps me stay motivated. Even now, two years later! Since I have trouble “sticking with” things, I know that I will have a closet full of cute running gear if I just buy it all at once. So, I let myself splurge a little every now and then after hitting a goal.

4. Make it Fun. Find the fun in it! Remember when you were little and could play for hours and it only felt like a few minutes? Well, a similar principle applies here: if you are having fun, it won’t be quite so agonizing. So, whether you enjoy people watching at the gym, watching your favorite shows while on the treadmill or joining a class, find something you enjoy!

5. Find a Friend. Whether it is a pal across the country that you email about your latest workouts, your husband who drags you out of bed in the morning, a buddy to meet at the gym or the park, find someone to conquer your goals with. Not only will it make it more fun, but it will help you be accountable on those days when your bed or the couch sound like much better choices.

d.a.r.

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Filed under Guest Posts, Wannabe former couch potato

Ready for a change

It’s one of those weeks where everything either upsets me, makes me mad, or I start second guessing everything I do. Rollercoaster for the emotions.

I thought I would have gotten a call by now to sub at some point this week, but I haven’t and it makes me nervous. I NEED to be working. I can’t afford not to.

I was supposed to have a sub job for tomorrow. She called while I was in the doctor’s office, so I called her back and left a message that I was available. I was excited because it was at the school I student taught at, so I would get to see the teachers and students that I miss a lot. Well, last night she called back while I was in the shower and left a message that she didn’t find my message till later and she had already found another sub.

WHAT?? Why wouldn’t you check your messages BEFORE looking for another person? I’m frustrated. It’s probably not a huge deal, but this week it is.

I also decided to spend some more time at my apartment since I haven’t been there in almost a month. I’m ready to leave again. The roommates drive me nuts and someone has put something down the sink that makes the entire kitchen smell like, well, I won’t tell you what it smells like, but it’s awful.

I even made food for all of them last night in an attempt to be nice. They ate it. But no “thank you”. I guess I shouldn’t do things for recognition, but a thank you would have been appreciated.

Also, trying desperately to get my diet and exercise schedule back on track. It’s killing me. I’m not going to be a size 2 by the wedding, or ever for that matter, but I would like to lose some and get my arms toned up before the wedding. I don’t want to hate all of my wedding pictures because I look HUGE in them. I actually have enjoyed my workouts. It’s the eating that is sabotaging my efforts. I mean, grilled chicken or pizza? Pizza sounds MUCH more appetizing. And the fiance is back to cycling 4 times a week, so he can eat practically whatever he wants because he will burn it all off. It’s just not fair.

I really need to buckle down and find some motivation within myself. I need to look at my long term goals, and not just what I want right now. Not only do I want to look good for wedding pictures, I want to be healthy. I want to start cycling and be able to keep up with him. I want to have the energy for when we have children so I can play with them. Also, I don’t want to add pregnancy weight on top of weight that I want to lose.

Not only in my diet, I need to get to work on finding job openings and applying, which can take about 3 hours per application. YIKES!

Okay. Done whining. Going to go walk and then hit the books again. In 4 more days, I won’t have to talk about studying, at least for a while! Yay!

New Teacher. New Wife.

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