Tag Archives: Workouts

BLINK FITNESS


1

Yesterday I made a decision to rejoin the gym again.

I had many reservations about it.  Okay, it only lasted for thirty minutes, but those small reservations felt like an anchor that was going to last longer than twenty-four hours, which is unlike me.  I think I’m going to blame it on the miasma of depression and the uncertainty it causes.  Now I know to most people joining a gym doesn’t sound even remotely significant, but when you’ve made the gym half your fucking life – it’s a big fucking deal!

Joining Blink was a happy accident if I believed in accidents.  I didn’t know they built a spanking new gym walking distance from me.  So could you imagine how big my heart swelled as I sat tipsy nursing my white plum wine across from the gym Pre-Valentine’s Day eating like a silly pig at my favorite Thai restaurant?  The thought of the gym alone gave me enough excitement to give my entire body a staggering erection.

Old memories flashed before me in all my assertive and madwoman training and the way I felt empowered simply by owning truck loads of ego and exhibiting strength and personal space in the weight room alongside the brutes of men.  It all rewound itself to foggy windows, smelling the dampness of other people’s sweaty gloves, headbands and fabric while zoning out to chalky protein, diverse tunes, and colossal sounds of iron clanks as well as cardio machines that squeaked for mercy and oil.

But since I broke my ankle I’ve become somewhat of a recluse and kept myself as inaccessible as a teenage girl in her Gothic room.  Over the course of two years I joined a gym twice and canceled the same.  At first I liked the idea of going back to who I was – the full time badass who wanted to spank everyone in the gym while priding and lifting for power, mass and size.  Until I realized I wasn’t the same woman.  I transitioned into something else (I don’t fully understand yet) and my goals did too.  The thing I do know is over the course of time I wanted to default to a natural size, lose a substantial amount of weight (still do) and still keep a lot of the strength I’ve earned from a decade.

Plus, I got used to working out in my own personal space at home.  I was made aware of my troubled hermit existence only after I started to go back to the gym and notice whenever someone would come near me I would practically hiss, sneer and snap at them if they even asked, “Are you using this mat?”  I think I lost some social/interactive skills by being a recluse.  Well, I live and I learn and I also change.  I’m at a different place now mentally, emotionally, spiritually and especially physically.

So once again I’m here joining a gym.  I know some of the good involves:  Being able to strengthen more of my ankle by using certain machines like the Treadmill and I’ll also lose weight quicker by devoting longer and steadier sessions instead of doing HIIT and circuit (strength) training multiple times a week.  I burn myself out all the time.  The bad is being around people and their bullshit, whether they say no when I ask to jump in with them on any given machine [or insert any other annoying gym attitude/behavior here].  Is this something I want to deal with?

More importantly joining this gym is about reflecting harder on the possible notion that I’ve outgrew the gym.  I may no longer find the gym a daily requirement in my life.  If there is a chance I don’t feel like I need the gym anymore, then I have to learn how to come to grips with that instead of wasting precious money trying to figure it all out.  However, if I wind up falling in love with the gym all over again, then that’s just true love that feels like sticking and I’m with it either way.

*

At this moment I’m setting up to go on my date with Blink Fitness.  I haven’t decided on the time yet.  It’s not only about Blink impressing me; I’m not above impressing Blink.  Don’t ask why.  It’s a gym.  I believe in making all kinds of impressions.

The gym from what I assessed is on the smaller end with just two floors.  The people there seem somewhat motivated, but they lack passion, which I’m surprised about because I guess I expect more out of people.  But I can see their blank faces droning whether they’re weightlifting, cardioing or stretching.  I’m telling myself it’s just the weekend and perhaps the energy is different during the weekday.

I’m going to shower, put cold cream on my face, smooth it over with some serum, and shave my underarms and legs.  I’ll slick the ends of my hair with protein polish and a flat-iron only to hide it’s slickness in a bun.  And although I have lots of variety (DVD’s, YouTube and paid Fitness Streaming Subscriptions) working out at home, everything is much different in the gym – energy, friendly competition and even meeting people or bumping into a gymrat I used to know takes place there.

I’m hoping being at closer distance would keep me motivated at first and I’ll have fun second.  I want to remain a gym member in my heart of hearts.  Also I don’t want a third cancellation on my gym life resume.  I would say wish me luck, but I don’t believe in luck.

Crazy excited,
Pennington

Advertisements

MEDS 2


1mednation1

Written previously, but freshly revised.

MEDS 1

So maybe I don’t need fixing?  Maybe I’m perfectly normal except for a few bipolar episodes a month.  Maybe I’m perfectly normal except that relationships are hard to manage under the waves of my high and low bipolar episodes.  Unfortunately these episodes can last throughout the days, weeks, months and years.  These episodes are rapid, can appear without sudden warning and sometimes when I’m outside looking in, I wonder about the duality of everything, the possibility of borderline personality disorder and about the strife everywhere in life.

As a result six months later after ongoing therapy I told the psychiatrist I would finally be ready to give medication a try and to my surprise she wasn’t super elated about it.  I wonder if that meant anything aside from her not caring about making a difference in her position.  The first medication she prescribed was called Lamictal.  The interesting or unnerving thing about this medication is it’s actually considered an anti-epileptic (anticonvulsant) drug, if you can believe it.

This nutty psychiatrist prescribed Lamictal to me based on my bipolar disorder (to delay the episodes) and because she believed I could use additional assistance for weight loss.  In any case, I was determined to give this a shot, so I took it with dedication for 3 months.  Naturally, during the course, I went through many side effects and even if they lasted a mere day I wrote them all down.  It was 2 decades almost exactly since I’ve taken any medication.  Here’s how my brain and body reacted:

General sensation of always being sick
General weakness
Fatigue (Extreme)
Sluggishness
Flu like symptoms
Unbalanced (Clumsiness, loss of balance control)
Forgetfulness (like experiencing memory loss)
Emotional Lability
Body Aches
Tender Breasts
Back pain
Nausea
Loss of appetite
Headaches
Stomach pain (Cramps)
Extra menstrual pain
Indigestion/Heartburn
Taste alteration (Either food taste better or disgusting)
Sweat increase
Sneezing
Nosebleeds
Ringing of ears
Itchiness
Insomnia
Body sacs (like Folliculitis)
Frequent urination
Diarrhea
Constipation/Bloody Stool
Can’t remember dreams

At first all the side effects above were consistent for the first 2 weeks.  Then after the 2 weeks were up many of the side effects began to taper off as my body started to adjust without flu-like symptoms.  However, these are the side effects that remained on a regular basis:  An overwhelming desire to eat more Carbs than usual, extra Perspiration (even if I sat/stood still) and Headaches, Headaches, Headaches.  But WAIT!  There’s more.

In the beginning the one side effect that bothered me the most was the drowsiness; the feeling of perpetual sleepiness and overall weakness.  Every day I was completely exhausted.  During this sensible time, I was fighting with myself and wondering once again where my workout motivation disappeared to?  Lamictal exhausted my entire system where for an entire month I couldn’t even get a single workout in.

The most prominent side effect (for me) that I can’t even explain, (but I’m sure somewhere there’s a terminology for it) tampered with who I am as a person.  I’m not stupid enough to NOT believe changing or altering your brain/body’s chemistry wouldn’t affect your personality because it most certainly does.  To me, this is one of the scariest things about taking a psychiatric pill, aside from consciously knowing you’re putting something extremely foreign in your body.

Lamictal affected one of the most personal parts of who I am – I could no longer write.  I had zero desire for it.  I felt like an entirely different person because of this.   All my life I’ve written for school, tried my hand at screenplays, poetry, short stories and as you know blogging.  So I’m like how could this be?  No desire to write.

This was changing me in ways I wasn’t even ready for and I was doing my best to be objective about it.  I would try sitting down at the table, hand caressing pen to paper, so I can come up with a single sentence and nothing would come out.  It’s like the thought process couldn’t process a single thought.  It’s like words meant nothing to me anymore and neither did the desire to express myself.

I felt severely inept and like I didn’t have any emotional response when it came to writing which blew my fucking mind!  What kind of sorcery was this?  This was when I decided I didn’t want to be on Lamictal anymore.  It was a shock to my system that my brain and body reacted rather extreme.

So when I expressed to the nutty psychiatrist that Lamictal has changed me to the point where I don’t feel like myself anymore and I can’t even write anymore which is something I love doing, she says nonchalantly, “I never heard of this.  This doesn’t seem possible.  Let’s try something else.”

To be continued.

-Pennington

Missing Myself


Camera 360

Here’s the truth:  Over the course of 2 months I’ve lost interest in everything.  A big part of this happened due to the unexpectedness of life and mostly because I was losing what I consider to be my identity at the core to strange and newer thoughts and to feelings I would never even give a seed to sprout from.

I went from power poses to vulnerable ones.  I went from an assertive voice to a squeak of a mouse.  I went from eating like a beast to eating like a tiny bird.  I went from being sure and proud of every decision I come to make up to now to drowning in what others wanted for me over night.  And how was I not myself?

It wasn’t until this week where I started to listen to music again.  It wasn’t until this week where I let nature come into my heart once more and touch my face and allowed it to perk up every one of my senses again while I paced myself from short travels or long city walks.

The only thing that has gotten me out of bed has been the productivity, the goal of going to school to get one degree so I can get another.  And it’s whatever works, whatever gets you through to the next day so one doesn’t feel reckless.  But I’m still out of control, I’m still holding onto negative views and I’m out of order when it comes to concentration.  It’s completely unlike me and if it wasn’t for my inner strength I would imagine I’d let go because all I feel is alone.

The last few nights I’ve taken mere opportunities to perform some bodyweight squats because in the back of my head I’ve brainwashed myself to move it or lose it.  Not too long ago before I knew what I knew I had taken a week off from having a troubling head/chest cold and Dark Knight being the strict personal trainer he is at the time made sure to pat and grope my ass to say, “Just checking.  It still feels firm.”  And of course I could have cursed him out and brought up the double standard views of genders except I didn’t because I understand what it means to be this way.  But the reality is there are countless factors that determine how quickly strength or physical looks are to diminish and I’m not within that realm of possibility.

Now I have to be smart and heal from the procedure I had on Monday.  I’m looking at (hopefully) another 2 weeks and if lifting heavy steel wasn’t an issue enough, there’s the not having actual penetration part either.  Oh goodie!

I could only remember the last few workouts I had in the beginning weeks of January.  One was working out with an acquaintance of mine (I forced him) and we worked out upper body until I caught a dead arm and until he pretty much tapped out on going set after set.  After we were done I had to pressure him to hydrate like a camel and eat something because he was coming down with chills as he did his best to try and keep up with me for every single static hold, rep, pyramid set and every other compound exercise while losing track of time.  We never made it to the movies.  But I was high and delighted as if I had an orgasm with merry smiles. Fuck me! I even caught people wishing they could be my training partner since the eyes never lie.

I remember the second workout was in my house where I supersetted (E-Z Curl) Small Barbell 40lbs (all I have at home) Squats with Push ups for as many sets as I could give as I was struggling to breathe still from a really bad hacking cough and lungs constricted where I needed my asthma pump from time to time.  Then I threw in Pauline Nordin’s The Butt Bible right after that workout to make sure I felt as if I worked all angles on my legs and glutes.  It did the trick because after all was done I felt orgasmic and wiped out once again.

I’m quick to believe for a moment (due to freaking out!) that once I reach a certain degree of shit that I can’t turn back and do what I used to do the way I’ve always done it (which is total bullshit by the way)!  It makes me as happy as receiving oral sex to now eagerly daydream about going back to the gym.  I feel I’m ready mentally, not yet physically.  But I can’t wait to bring a new attitude and vigor to my sets with various movements.  I can’t wait to steal the limelight from others who are working next to me.  I can’t wait until I feel somewhat sexy again.  I can’t wait to feel the blood pumping throughout my body making me feel beastly and edgy and powerful.  I can’t wait!

It’s strange to feel like I’m sitting on the bench for something that was out of my control.  I don’t ask life why anymore.  I stopped that.  One reason is because it sounds beyond melodramatic and I’m sure there are lessons in place for me as much as there are mistakes.  But even though I told myself not to deny anything I feel during this delicate emotional and mental moment I have to move slow although I really just want to move on to a different chapter in my life.

Still I have a friendly jealousy towards all the amazing people who are working out currently and I get to watch their progress on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr and Instagram.  No matter what social media I’m on there’s fitness at every turn.  I’ve been enjoying some folks who have been taking the time out to send me their photo improvement as well.  They don’t know that underneath it all they’re feeding me constant energy and therefore are inspiring me.

The other truth is:  I’m determined, passionate, have good work ethics, have a thirst for more so I’ll never be able to truly let go. I’ve never been a weak person.  I’ve always had and continue to have a fire in me that won’t quit.  So in the end I’ll get through this as everything else I’ve gotten through in my life.  However this time around and to take a quote from Country Strong I want to, “Fall in love with as many things as you can (or possible).”  I want to give that a go too and maybe we all should?

And as far as tonight goes I’m flirting much with the idea of Yoga.  How much strain could it possibly put my body through right?  I will do something therapeutic this late evening like cook dinner and make tacos. 😉

P.S.

If you manage to read this all on your first time:  Thank you!  And even if you didn’t, thank you anyway!  And if you come here to check my page out regularly enough to read it thank you!  And if this is your first time on my page:  Thanks for coming aboard at this moment! 😀

-Pennington