Mondays Usually Suck

When I was scribbling out the outline for tonight’s post, the first line read “Mondays usually suck” because — well, because they usually do. There’s just something so much harder about getting myself out of bed for my less than ideal commute on a Monday compared to pretty much every other day of the week. I’ve built in some ways to deal with this: I let myself “sleep in” on Mondays, compared to the rest of the week; I get my workout in after work; I leave some great TV for Monday night (Vanderpump Rules, anyone? It’s so bad, it’s good), and I usually have a pretty great meal picked out for dinner.

But this Monday was different. After this beautiful weekend, I was downright JAZZED to get up on Monday (even though I still slept in — old habits die hard!). And you can probably guess, if you are from the Cleveland area, that it has a whole lot to do with how gloriously alive this city feels when the ice and snow melt away and the life and green and light start to poke out from the ruins of The Cleveland Winter. This weekend was filled with driving with the windows down blasting my favorite tunes, hiking around Orchard Hills, grabbing some local deliciousness from Patterson Fruit Farm, a play at Playhouse Square, and evening strolls IN MY BIRKENSTOCKS to round out the weekend. That’s right. A walk. At night. In sandals. It was like I could feel the stir-craziness of winter slipping away. And I hope you could too.

I felt a lot of comfort in how much I enjoyed a moderate hike and a leisurely stroll through my neighborhood this weekend. After surgery, walking is pretty much the only thing I will be able to do for a pretty decent amount of time. I’m having a lot of trouble coming to terms with that. It’s almost like I am grieving the “loss of my fitness” as the surgery date approaches. I have a pretty regular-ish schedule in terms of working out. Two or three times a week I work out at Harness Cycle in Ohio City. Two times a week (okay, occasionally just once a week if I let myself sleep in — are you sensing a trend here? I LOVE SLEEP) I do weight training at our onsite gym at Hyland before work. I also try to squeeze in one or two sessions at Title Boxing. My workout schedule feels vital to my physical and mental stability. Endorphins are a hell of a drug, let me tell you. And I get my fix through fitness (and also dark chocolate. But that’s another post entirely). So what happens when I go from intense workouts five to six days a week to slow, short, probably painful walking for a few weeks, maybe a month, maybe longer? Not only will I not be permitted by my doctors to work out the way I’m used to, but I probably won’t even want to do it due to pain and exhaustion. It’s kind of a scary thought, as I’ve spent over two years cultivating this new passion for movement in my life.

I think this Truth — that my physical fitness is going to shift a lot for awhile — has been weighing pretty heavily on me. But I’m gonna make it work. And this weekend’s beautiful weather reminded me how great slowing down can be. Maybe slowing down but still moving is just what I need to shake things up.

A friendly sign from my walk last night. On the other sign it says “Speed Limit: 8 MPH” 8 MPH?? If that’s not a sign to embrace this opportunity to slow down, I don’t know what is.

Lately slowing down has taken the shape of focusing more on my nutrition choices. No doctor is gonna stop me from pursuing that goal. Today I bought 3 lbs of red skinned potatoes, 6 oz of raspberries, 2 avocados and big ol’ eggplant (all organic!) for $8.50 at work and I bragged to anyone who would listen in both real life and snapchat form. Because I’m a goon — but also because that is a DEAL and this is all still pretty new to me. I made the tastiest bowl of fresh mozz, tomatoes, cucumber and avocado over spinach with some homemade balsamic vinaigrette for dinner tonight. I LOVE making food from fresh ingredients and seeing how much produce I can squeeze into a meal. It’s so fun to notice how great my mind and my body feel after eating right, not to mention how amazing healthy meals can taste. I can’t wait to see what I decide to do with the ramshackle combination of fruits and veggies I’ve got.

So I’m spending a lot of time getting comfortable with the idea of slowing down. Of focusing on other things, like what to write about, what new veggie to try, what book to read. The gym will always be there. I’ve already paid for a year at Title so I have no choice but to go back. Harness Cycle is stuck with me whether they like it or not. And my buddies at work that I workout with are going to have to deal with my complaints about burpees again in the near future.

I am learning to pivot my thoughts from “I don’t get to do what I want” to “I get to see what this new challenge manifests in me”. And maybe one day I’ll even pivot away from “Mondays usually suck”, too.

I can already feel something happening — a change manifesting. And I think it’s gonna be good. I really do.

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