De-stressing with Exercise

It has been awhile since I’ve updated. It makes me sad but alas – school and work is keeping my occupied and consumes my every waking hour. Except when it’s not being consumed by some sort of work out!

I learned a really long time ago that the best way for me to de-stress is by exercising. It’s not a little known fact, it works for most people. But it’s so apparent in my behavior that whenever I’m acting like a crazy person or downright bitch Matt will just look at me and say “Maybe you should go to the gym.” Does he know me or what?

So when I began school last fall and threw myself into my studies, neglecting the gym for the sake of my homework, it didn’t take me long to realize I needed to find a balance. Now that I am working (full time starting this week! bring on the money!) and taking pre-req’s for Nursing which are proving to be even harder than my CNA program, I am finding it even more difficult to make time to exercise. But as I said – if I don’t do it – I turn into a nut job.

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I mean for real

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I’ve been maintaining a fairly good schedule of hitting the gym and going for a run a couple times a week each and it has kept me satisfied. This last Thursday, Tricia invited me to go this free yoga class by ClassPass at Strala Seattle. I had done exactly one yoga class before at my gym. I loved it. It made my body feel strong and relaxed. I have chronic shoulder pain and for awhile I went to get massages on a monthly basis. My masseuse told me that yoga was even better than massage (but not to tell anyone he said that) and so on his advice I tried it out and he was right. The shoulder pain was gone, if only for the night. I haven’t been back because the yoga classes are available at weird hours and it’s difficult to find the drive to go to the gym at 8pm. So when Tricia asked if I wanted to go, I was excited to participate and see what else was out there.

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Tricia and I after our yoga class

Long story short, we had a blast. I am probably going to start exploring yoga a bit more in depth in the near future but most likely on YouTube or the free classes at my gym due to cost.

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On Sunday I ran in the Hot Chocolate Run downtown. Since I am supposed to be preparing for my first ever 1/2 marathon in June, I originally wanted to do the 15k to step up my training, however, due to cost and late sign up, I ended up doing the 5k. Tricia and her mom were going to walk it and unfortunately I was unable to connect with them while I was there. So really, I worked til midnight the night before and got up at 530am to drive downtown to run a 5k by myself at 645 in the morning on a Sunday. In all honesty though, it was hard to be disappointed. The run took us from the Seattle Center, down to Pike Place and back and it was the most beautiful run. We started just as the sun came up and I really wish I had stopped to take pictures. We had such beautiful views of the water, the Great Wheel and the sun rise. But if I had stopped, I wouldn’t have PRed!

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Of course a lot of it was down hill – but going down hill means you must go up and that doesn’t mean I didn’t kick ass going up the hills! My routine run at home starts uphill so I think that makes me a better hill runner in general. This was evident to me as I ran up Mercer street and passed about 95% of the runners as they stopped to walk. I know, I’m bragging now. I’ll stop.

In the end I was really happy I went out there to do the run. At the end they had this “Finishers Mug” which was full of chocolate fondue, a bag of mini pretzels, a marshmallow, a rice krispy treat and some wafer cookies to dip in as well as – Hot Chocolate! PLUS included with your registration you get an awesome zip up hoodie. Most 5k’s give you a t-shirt with your registration which typically don’t fit right and I always end up donating them or never wearing them, but my hoodie I will definitely be wearing.

A few other pictures from the morning:

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Space Needle as the sun started coming up
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Only runners!
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Getting ready to run

This week I will be trying to find a new work/school/work out balance. I have a feeling I’ll be doing my work outs in the morning before work again, something I go back and forth on every 6 months or so – but it’ll be worth it to not go crazy!

Until next time – stay sane Seattle!

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4 thoughts on “De-stressing with Exercise

  1. Nice work on killing those hills and PRing lady! You’re doing awesome! You’re right, the course was beautiful. I stopped and took some pics along the way and it really made me remember how beautiful of a place we live in and to not take it for granted! I’m glad you’re making time to fit in your workouts so you don’t go all cray cray on Matt! 😀

  2. Sounds like you’re killing it! Way to go on your successful Hot Chocolate, Jenica! I am thrilled to hear you’re exploring yoga–it will save you in preventing running injuries! Keep up the inspiring work! Xxoo

  3. Exercise is definitely my favorite way to de-stress. I love how ClassPass forces me to go even if I don’t feel up to it by the end of the day! Don’t want to pay to cancel!!

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