Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Meet Our New Friday Guest Blogger: Simone

Greetings from London, Slayers! Anne here! I just wanted to drop a line quickly and let you all know I'll be on a brief hiatus until after the 30th. I'm on vacation and while I WANT to write, I also know I should be focusing on enjoying this once in a life time chance to explore instead of worrying about when I'll be able to get wifi access again and post my blog. Please don't think I love you all any less! I am very excited to post when I can over the next few weeks and give you the "skinny" on my exercise adventures in England! I'll definitely be taking a run around Chelsea tomorrow morning so that should be exciting! I'm also going to the Harry Potter Studio tour in the afternoon and I am pretty much DYING of excitment already. 

BUT, my dears! You shan't be without entertainment. You'll still have posts from Michael on Mondays and he is doing an AMAZING job with his juice fast. The guy is nearly down 20 lbs since he started blogging here and his progress is mindblowing. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!

I'd also like to use today's post to introduce you to Simone, our new guest blogger for Fridays! She's a Kung-Fu and Crossfit badass with the desire to get stronger. Her tale is so different from mine or Michael's and there is so much we can learn from each other! I could go on, but I'm going to let you hear about it from the horse's mouth!

Tell me a little bit about who you are and what you do.

My name is Simone, and like Anne and Michael, I’m a huge nerd, too. I’ve been reading voraciously since I was three years old, and I love good sci-fi and fantasy. I grew up without a gaming console (I know!) but dived in about two years ago with Assassin’s Creed and Skyrim, and I am currently loving my first taste of the Lara Croft world with Tomb Raider Reborn. The theme here is that for my entire life, I’ve loved adventuring from the safety of my home – but I’ve always been too afraid to get out there and try to be an adventurer myself. I don’t even have an arrow to the knee as an excuse!

When did you decide you needed to make a change in your health and fitness level and was there a specific moment where it clicked and you actually committed to doing it? 

I actually have a different story than many, and I’m a little guilty about it: I’m not on a weightloss journey, exactly. I’m a healthy weight. But for the majority of my life thus far, I have never been athletic, never strong; never particularly physically capable at, well, anything. I picked dandelions on the soccer field and spitefully walked my entire mile in gym class (still managing to turn bright red from the effort).

Because I’m in a healthy weight range, I’ve always felt like I should be perfectly happy with my body – like it was selfish of me to envy the strength and confidence of fit people when my own body was “fine.” My lack of talent at sports as a kid had convinced me that I just wasn’t cut out for physical activity. Oh well, right?

I’m the kind of person who overanalyzes and overthinks everything, so I haven’t really had a “moment” yet because I still don’t fully believe in myself. But I’ve had some major turning points in my life, such as joining a kung fu studio at 16, finding Nerd Fitness a year ago and learning about paleo and healthy habits, and starting CrossFit. I’m still too afraid to admit to myself that I might actually be able to be strong and capable – so for now I’m letting my progress kind of sneak up on me.

If you gave up or didn't make it a priority in the past, why do you think that was?

Like many people, I’m afraid of failing. I get bursts of enthusiasm where I vow to do X workout and eat Y food EVERY DAY, and then I burn out and let it slip away. I’m a pro at rationalizing all the “I can’t” excuses in the book! Keeping a positive and realistic attitude is definitely something I’ve been working on for a long time.

What are your goals and how do you plan to accomplish them? 

I have so many goals, they’ll have to be in a separate post. Things like deadlifting twice my body weight, running a mile in under 8:30, and throwing a punch that would actually be effective are all on my long, long list. In short, I’d like to be a leaner, stronger, and more confident version of my current self!

As a recent graduate, I’m transitioning to a new job and uncertain future right now, so life is chaotic. For now, I do CrossFit twice a week and I just started adding two nights of running with the “Zombies, Run!” app that Anne recommended. I also plan on adding some extra stretching and will be targeting a few of my other goals in the near future as my schedule settles down. I’ll keep you posted!

There are so many options when it comes to diet and fitness. Why are you choosing this particular path?

I’m terrible at working out on my own. I really love the camaraderie and community of my kung fu studio and among my friends in my garage – it helps me to push myself and keeps me coming back each day. Running is more of a struggle for me, but having exciting radio transmissions of zombies shambling along behind me is definitely helping!

Even though I can still hardly believe that I am, in fact, becoming an athletic person, my own experience in the past year has been so heartening overall that I’m beginning to consider pursuing health and fitness as a career somehow. There are still a lot of things that I’m struggling with, but my life has improved drastically even with small changes, and I want to show other people that if this introverted bookworm can pick 200lbs up off the ground, they can, too!

What made you want to guest post about your journey on PR?

I loved Anne’s story on Nerd Fitness. I’m pretty sure nerds and fitness are my favorite combination! I think it will help me to have an outlet to share my struggles and successes – and even more, I hope that it helps other people who may be facing the same doubts and experiences. We’re all in this together!

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