Tag Archives: Encouragement

New Beginnings

29 Jan

Just typing ‘New Beginnings’ caused a few tears.  Man, the past few years have been overwhelming, difficult, tearful, great, depressing, amazing and rewarding.  There have been so many changes.  For one, I went through a divorce in 2013 and I also met my now husband, James.  There have been so many new beginnings: healing from a divorce, a new relationship and a marriage.

For my husband, his new beginning came after his open heart surgery.  I can’t begin to explain the difference the surgery has made on his life – it’s almost like night and day.  James has always had a GREAT sense of humor and that has not changed one bit, but his energy has increased so much.  I am so proud of him.  He has started working out this week and he has been so committed and devoted to regaining a healthier life.  He has truly been an inspiration.  He just keeps on ‘ticking.’  Ha – he has a mechanical valve, which causes a ticking sound when his heart beats.  

For me, my new beginning came just this year.  And with the help of a friend, I have forgiven myself.  Actually, this year, I have tried to forgive myself and others for all sorts of various reasons.  I am so tired of being mad, angry and depressed…I want to be happy, positive and most of all, I want to enjoy life with my family and friends.  With this new year of making all things positive, comes letting go of feeling sorry for myself.

I urge you to try and make your life more positive.  Let go of the anger.  Stop holding onto grudges and just simply let go.  Your soul will thank you.

As far as working out this week, I completed an entire week at CrossFit.  Woop – go me!

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Life and Stress of a Struggling CrossFitter

7 Oct

It has been months since I’ve updated this blog and I’m still unsure if I’ll be able to keep it updated as often as before…

 

My life has changed so much this year.  In February, my life took a totally different direction.  My marriage of almost 8 years ended.  The biggest adjustment has been going about life only seeing my son every other week.  Going from seeing him every single day to seeing him for 7 days at a time and then not seeing him for 7 days has been tough.  I have cried and cried and cried and missed him so much, but having a child does not save a marriage.  Even though it has been tough, for me, it was the best decision.

 

So this is my life now.  I’m a single mother.  I work full-time.  I am 5 classes away from finally having my undergraduate degree in Marketing.  I manage the accounts at River Region CrossFit.  I feel guilty when I don’t spend every minute possible with my son.  I also feel guilty when I pick my son up from daycare, take him to the box and WOD while someone else is taking care of him.  It is hard for me to totally dedicate my mind to WODing when I feel like I should be with my son.  It’s tough.

 

Through the stress, I have tried to just get through each day.  My goals for my journey have not been lost and they are still there, but right now – I’m just trying to overcome the stress.  So much happens to your soul when you go through a divorce and all I need is support from friends and family.  I don’t need lectures or to be told what I am doing is wrong, I just need a shoulder to lean on when things get tough.  I need a listening ear when I have a bad day.  I need someone to tell me I am a great mother when I miss my son.

 

I haven’t given up on my fitness.  I haven’t given up on CrossFit.  I haven’t given up on myself.  All that being said, I do have bad days.  I have days of anxiety.  I have days of depression.  It is there and I cannot escape it, but I also have many days of happiness.  I do have someone in my life other than my son who contributes to making me feel good about myself.  Our meeting was unexpected, but I do not regret it.  The timing wasn’t the best, but again I wouldn’t change it….

 

Just a few days ago I was talking to my coach and friend, Josh, about my life.  I have confided in him along the way.  He doesn’t let me give up on myself and helps me remember to “keep things Fletch.”  I beat myself up all the time because when I am able to WOD – I’m still scaling all my WODs.  In December, it will be two years since I started the CrossFit lifestyle and I should be RXing all my WODs.  Josh reminds me that my life since February has been turned upside down and I’ll get back to where I was…it will just take time.

 

For now, I cannot make new goals.  I cannot say, “this is what I’ll do next.”  At this point, I can only deal with the current and present moments in my life and take it day by day, and remember each day is a new day.

Still here and still WODing.

20 Mar

Well…what can I say?  It has been a long time since I last posted on “i chalk it.”  My apologies to my followers.  I have had to deal with some personal issues and I still am unsure of how often this blog will be kept up-to-date.

 

All that aside, I do have great news.  I finally hit 40 pounds lost and slid into a size 10!  We started the Ravage at RRCF and I am so proud of all the Ravagers!  We are all working so hard to “activate, intensify and destroy!”  Remember a few months ago, when I had a major breakdown because of handstand pushups?  You’ll never guess who finally got their own handstand hold?!?!?!  What? What?  Yup, that would be Fletch.  And just in case you do not believe me, check out the picture below.  In addition, I am finally able to do 2 double unders in a row, but can actually link them together with a single back into a double!  Oh oh oh, and I got my 1 mile to 10:10, but since then ran 1/2 mile and decreased my time to 4:49!  Major improvement.  And, I PR’d on my power clean this week – up to 105!!

Handstand

 

I am finally feeling like I am accomplishing goals in the box…I have even been able to WOD RX instead of scaled.  It is still surreal that CrossFit stuck when most everything else didn’t…it feels good to work hard for something and actually see results.

 

That’s all for now.  Keep on keeping on!

Fletch’s Year-End Review

21 Dec

Wow, what can I say?  2012 has been an amazing year.  I hit my 30 pound lost mark, lost 4 pant sizes and so many other milestones.  It has been one year since I first stepped foot into River Region CrossFit (RRCF).  If you remember my story, I started CrossFit as an overweight couch potato weighing in over 200 pounds.  When I first contacted Josh Carter, my now coach at RRCF, I was at rock bottom and on the edge of giving up.  It is difficult not to become emotional while talking about my journey because I NEVER thought it could be done.  You can ask most anyone who has known me for a long time; I’m notorious for starting something and not finishing it:  Atkins Diet, LA Weight Loss, Planet Fitness, Jazzercise…the list goes on.

There is something about CrossFit that grabs a hold of you and doesn’t let go; well, that is if you allow it to totally consume you.  If you give it a chance and actually try – and I mean try with all your body, mind and soul – you can do it and you’ll have nothing but benefits to reap from it.  In one year, I have formed new friendships, gained confidence in myself and learned to love myself again.  For years, I disliked the person I had become:  depressed, emotional and afraid.  It took courage that sometimes…I just did not have in order to put myself together and interact with friends.  I never felt like I truly fit in – I was always the “fat” girl.  There were sometimes I didn’t go to get-together’s or parties because I felt horrible about myself:  my clothes didn’t fit right or I was just anxious to be around others.  Everything about me was out of sorts, which resulted in eating more and doing less.  When I look back at pictures, I can’t believe “that Stephanie,” the one who ate uncontrollably and had little self-worth had gotten so out of control.

Since 2006, I have let each year pass with wants and wishes of losing weight.  Each summer, I would tell myself – this is it – this time next year, I’ll be comfortable in my bathing suit.  Each year passed and more weight was packed on and before I knew it, my size 18 pants were too small.  When I contacted Josh 12 months ago, I was serious about changing my life, but there was always this voice in my head telling me, “you can’t do it – you always give up and what makes you think things will be different this time?”  River Region CrossFit is what is different this time:  the coaches, friends, atmosphere, community…that’s what is different.

Now, here I am, a CrossFitter.  I may not be the best CrossFitter and lift the most weight, but I am doing far more than I ever done.  Every single day, week, month – there’s an improvement or a new milestone.  Rikki Rogers said, “Strength doesn’t come from what you can do.  It comes from overcoming things you once thought you couldn’t.”  And for me, the year of 2012 has been about overcoming things I couldn’t before.  For 2013, I want to expand on my goals and set new personal records.

But yes, I wear crazy looking shoes and I don’t go one day without mentioning something CrossFit.  My Facebook page is filled with CrossFit this and CrossFit that.  My ears are on auto-tune…it feels like I can hear “CrossFit” from a mile away and when I hear it, my heart starts beating and my pulse speeds up.  I get super excited.  Even if it isn’t my conversation and I don’t know the people, I want to join the conversation if it’s geared around CrossFit.  Yep, you can say I’m addicted.

For me, CrossFit is more than just lifting weight.  CrossFit has been the avenue for me to find myself and learn to love myself again.  I have gained confidence and self-worth.  RRCF is true to its’ slogan – it is the baddest box in the River Region and does redefine fitness.

I have the most amazing coaches:  Joshua Carter, Wesley Hodges, Larry Geddings, Stephen Roy, Chris Bailey, Bucky Stephens and I cannot forget Mandy and Jake Baker, and Chandler Merrill.  Each and every single one of these coaches have taught me something – a technique, the need to believe in myself, commit to the movement and more.  They have seen me nervous, irritated, ticked off, upset and crying like a baby.  Not once, have they stopped believing in me.

Now to the even better stuff, my personal records and max weights!

One Rep Max:

  • November 12, 2012, Push Jerk:  105 pounds from 55 pounds on May 9, 2012
  • November 12, 2012, Deadlift:  200 pounds from 65 pounds on January 26, 2012

Personal Records:

  • November 27, 2012, Back Squat:  115 pounds from 55 pounds on February 23, 2012
  • December 15, 2012, Front Squat:  105 pounds from 75 pounds on April 17, 2012
  • Grace at 75 pounds, completed in 5 minutes and 20 seconds
  • 20 inch box jumps
  • 55 pound snatch
  • 55 pound overhead squat
  • 5k run (without stopping) in 40:13 compared to not being able to run 400 meters without stopping one year ago.
  • June 2012:  Competed in Embrace the Gauntlet, a Garage Games CrossFit Competition

Weight Lost:  33 pounds

Inches Lost:

  • Upper Arm:  2.5 inches
  • Bust:  5 inches
  • Waist:  3.7 inches
  • Hips:  5.8 inches
  • Thighs:  3 inches
  • Calves:  0.5 inches
  • Ankles:  0.5 inches

Total Lost:  21 inches

December 2012

200 pound Deadlift

200 pound Deadlift

November 2012

2011 vs 2012!!!!

2011 vs 2012!!!!

October 2012 vs October 2011

2012 5k on left vs 2011 5k on right

2012 5k on left vs 2011 5k on right

October 2012

October 2012

Barbells for Boobs, Grace scaled @ 75 pounds.  Completed in 5 min 20 sec.

Barbells for Boobs, Grace scaled @ 75 pounds. Completed in 5 min 20 sec.

July 2012

My coach, Wes, and me.20 inch box jump.

My coach, Wes, and me.
20 inch box jump.

June 2012

Clean and Jerks @ Embrace the Gauntlet

Clean and Jerks @ Embrace the Gauntlet

The video that started it all – I had to “chalk my hands” for courage to jump that 20 inch box!

Wow – times have changed…

Oh and crazy shoes, see?!?!?!

Fletch's shoes.

Fletch’s shoes.

Thank you to all my coaches, family, friends and ichalkit followers – thank you for the motivation, inspiration and encouragement.  It has been such a great year.  I can’t wait to see what great things will happen in 2013!!!

Awesome-ness.

12 Nov

Why is that when I blab about my feelings on here that they are usually resolved the next day?  I suppose I shouldn’t question it and just go with it, huh?  Suits me.  I’m just glad tonight’s WOD was able to lift my spirits.  What can I say to sum up tonight’s WOD?  AWESOME-NESS, that’s what it was.  I felt so good that I couldn’t focus on studying for my Finance test, instead I was turning cartwheels in my living room.  Soon the cartwheels turned into trying to do a HSPU in my dining room.  I was able to get up on the wall, ahem, by myself – but my arms weren’t locked, which cause the leaning and then crashing tower of Fletch.  I landed on my head, but I was too surprised that I got on the wall that I didn’t care.  I tried it again, but wasn’t as successful, but it’s a start, right??

 

I bet you’re wondering what was so awesome about tonight’s WOD…well, Josh Carter and coaches were determined to encourage everyone at the box to PR on Deadlifts and Push Jerks.  I have to say by all the posts popping up in my News Feed on Facebook that they were successful.  At the 5:45 p.m. class tonight, people were working up to their max 1 rep goal.  It was truly amazing to see everyone in the zone.  I know everyone in our class exceeded their max – it literally makes me want to scream “YEAH YUH” like Lil Jon.  Ahhhh!!!!  Before tonight my max on the Deadlift was 155 pounds, but tonight my max increased to 200 pounds!  I mean, whaaat??  That’s crazy, right?  My Push Jerk tonight exceeded to 105 pounds…eek!!!

 

I truly think everyone left the box tonight feeling accomplished.  Good stuff happening, people, good stuff.

Updates…

11 Nov

…it has been awhile since I’ve posted.  My apologies.  Things have busy and I haven’t really been feeling inspired lately.  I have got to get out of this funk that I’m in.  I can’t get my mind right, which is interfering with my workouts and school.  Ugh.  One thing that is different though, which is a HUGE improvement is that I’m still showing up for the WODs.  The Stephanie in the past would have quit by now and went back to the same old crap of being lazy and eating/cooking anything her little heart desired.  Enough about all this, let’s move onto the updates.

Update 1:  Barbells for Boobs.  I was pretty nervous.  I’m not exactly sure why, but I was.  A group of ladies from work came to the box to support me, which was amazing.  🙂  I completed the 30 clean and jerks at 75 pounds in 5 minutes and 20 seconds.  I set a personal record that day and our box raised over $2,000!!!  Yippppeeee!

Barbells for Boobs at RRCF

Strong Ta-Ta’s.

Clean and Jerk at 75 Pounds

Update 2:  Halloween Bash at RRCF.  Lauren, Wes and I threw a Halloween Bash at the box.  It was a whole lotta fun.  I showed off some of my awesome dance moves, you know the MC Hammer, lawnmower, grocery cart and many others.  Ha!

Lauren as Sophia Grace, me as La Sarah and Wes as Ellen Degeneres

La Sarah and Darrell as Lil Wayne

Vic as John Cena and La Sarah

La Sarah and my Coach, Josh

Update 3:  HSPU’s reared its ugly head again.  Once again, I cried and left me feeling totally defeated.  My coach Wes gave me a much-needed “Come to Jesus Meeting.”  Grrrr.  I have decided to start with cartwheels.  Think about it:  I’ll get used to the “going down movement,” supporting my weight and overcoming my fear of being upside down.  I think it can work.

Update 4:  I bought a size medium coat.  Yeah yuh!  Last year, I was wearing an x-large and I hate to admit this, but I was still wearing my maternity pea coat.  Again, why did I let myself get that out of control?  I am so thankful for CrossFit, my coaches and my RRCF family and let’s not forget my friends and family.  All of them together help keep me motivated.  So, if you’re reading…I’m in desperate need of some inspiration and motivation.  Not physical, but mental.  Help me get out of this funk!  I need to believe in myself again.

Well, that’s about it.  Holla!

Determination.

18 Oct

My last post was about how I boo freaking hoo’ed at CrossFit on Tuesday.  Yesterday, I read some of my older posts and is unreal how a person can change in a few months.  I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again, CrossFit isn’t just about physical fitness, it is about breaking down those mental and emotional barriers to allow YOU to believe in yourself.  Little by little, I am becoming more confident in my skills.  I am believing in myself a little more each week.  It is tough, but I never expected it to be easy.

 

After my mini breakdown on Tuesday, I committed me – myself – and I to not letting it get me down.  I put behind the stares from falling on my head during HSPU’s and I showed up tonight determined to make that WOD my biatch, which I did.  Yes sir, I sure did!  And Josh Carter, if you are reading this, can we say progress?

 

Ok, so I am sure you’re wondering about tonight’s WOD, huh?

15 Clean and Jerks

Rest 1 minute

10 Clean and Jerks

Rest 1 minute

5 Clean and Jerks

Rest 1 minute

50 Deadlifts

30 lateral burpees

I was able to finish the 30 clean and jerks (at 75 pounds) in 8 minutes.  The entire WOD was completed under 20 minutes.

 

Milestones.

15 Oct

Here I am sitting in the cafeteria at Troy University, Montgomery.  I am waiting around until my 8:05 p.m. class begins…Managerial Finance, I…ugh.  Needless to say, I am not excited about the class.  On a typical day, I (Fletch) am getting warmed up for the WOD.  I have to admit missing a WOD makes Finance even worse.

 

I have always wanted to be addicted to some sort of fitness regimen and I never thought it would happen…ever.  Days like today make me realize that yup, it happened.  I am addicted to CrossFit.

 

OK, on with the blog.  There is a point to this, I promise.  From my previous posts, you have read that I participated in my first 5k in October 2011 and this October (one year later), I was able to run the entire 3.1 miles without stopping.  Huge milestone, people – huge!  The photographer for the run posted pictures of the runners today.  You should know me a little by now, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that I put together a before and after photo.  The photo is below.  I posted it to Facebook today and received a lot of awesome comments.  And of course I sent the picture to my coaches, Josh and Wes.  Now, I’m sharing the picture on my blog with all of you.  I hope you enjoy it.  Keep going and fight that fight.

 

Left: 2012 Right: 2011

Snatch It!

2 Oct

A new WOD is posted every Monday, Tuesday and Thursday of each week.  I stalk the RRCF page until the WOD is posted and sometimes I regret even looking and yesterday was definitely one of those days.  I tell myself that it is ok to check out the WOD because it will NOT be a deciding factor on whether or not I go – I decided in December 2011, when I first started CrossFit, that it would be mandatory to do the WODs.  I wasn’t just going to lay out of the workout just because I didn’t feel like it or the WOD was too hard.  I am committed to keeping this lifestyle that has totally consumed me since December.

Well, like I mentioned earlier – yesterday’s WOD was one of those “regret looking at the WOD” days.  I showed up at the box nervous.  As Josh was teaching us the technique of the snatch (with a PVC pipe), my heart was beating so fast.  I just knew that I was going to be unsuccessful and it scared the crap out of me.  One day I hope to have as much belief in myself as my coaches do in me.  It’s almost overwhelming how they know without a shadow of a doubt that if you commit and put your mind to it – you’ll succeed.

Here’s yesterday’s WOD:

WOD 10.1.12

We walk in the box after our technique lesson to actually try it with the bar.  Then, we added the weight. Again, I was super nervous.  My weight ended up being 55 pounds for the snatch and overhead squat.  I was unable to finish all three rounds, but I was able to make it to the 10 overhead squats on round three.  It felt good to as Josh put it “rip that bar off the floor” and succeed.

Here’s a video of my snatch and overhead squat:

Cheers to the next 30.

27 Sep

I’ve been down 30 pounds for a little while now and though I have enjoyed it – it is time to lose the next 30.  The month of September has flown by and I haven’t taken my Paleo-ish lifestyle seriously – well, except for this week.  Thankfully because of it, I was able to complete tonight’s WOD feeling strong.  It really does make a difference to eat right.  If I don’t, I feel sluggish – but when I do, I feel energized and ready to tackle the workout.

Here I am, down 30…

 

 

 

So here goes – cheers to the next 30!