Thursday, February 28, 2008


A somewhat successful week work-out wise. Monday AK and I (eventually) made it to the gym. I did squats for the first time in forever and really felt it... until about yesterday, actually. I'm happy that I can seem to do more weight on my upper body (not really pressing more than 20 lbs., but it's more than 10!) even with a bit of break from regular lifting. Seems like things are starting to stick, so to speak. Ran for a full half hour on Tuesday - 15 min. out and back. I think I did at least 3 miles (should properly gauge my usual routes), which was pretty satisfying. I just felt fast.

Yesterday was open bouting. It was a small turn out (most of the competitive kids cleared out early), but I still got a lot of practice in. I'm trying to work on parry-ripostes and, as always, finishing my attack. I was pretty successful on doing parry-riposte off the line (Russian #2 action/countertime), but not so much running backwards. I need to stay on the blade more, bind it more in some cases. I kept pushing one fencer to the end of the strip and then would get caught up in a counter-riposte war. Must Stop Riposting to Four! Still, a good bout.

I was really happy that I made the coach change on multiple occasions and picked up a parry when he thought his riposte was assured. I noticed that while fencing the rest of the class I was pretty calm and my endurance levels were excellent (hurrah for running!). But against the coach I found myself panting and tense. The few running books I've read have advised runners to occasionally "check in " on their bodies: Am I slouching? Is anything hurting? Can I push this or do I need to slow down? For the first time, I really checked in with myself on the strip: How's the brain dealing? Feet? Hand? I tried to relax back into my en garde after every touch, to let go of all the tension that developed during the action. I think it sorta worked. I felt more awake and "eyes open" actions came a little easier. I need to practice this in lessons, especially when I'm screwing up an action and about to lose it.

After practice I started writing in my running log (now training log I suppose) and started to wonder what my priority is in terms of sports. Am I a runner (albeit a newbie) who fences to cross-train or a fencer who runs to cross-train? I'm not really sure of the answer. I have more time for the running - it requires less equipment, I can do it as soon as I get home, and it's easy to drag people along. Right now I'm only bouting one night a week (getting to the competitive practice is doable, but a pain in the ass) and taking about two or three lessons a week. I'm not really competing in either sport. Maybe this is something I'm not suppose to answer right now. But it's still strange to think of myself, the girl who did stats for the high school volleyball team, as an athlete, let alone a multi-sport one.

That's pretty much all that's going on. There's the potential for huge changes at work (workflow/software related), but I can't really talk about that (there's also not much to report other than that we're waiting). I managed to make a meal tonight that featured four distinct food groups. I spent all of Tuesday night reading Full-Frontal Feminism by Jessica Valenti (founder of The book raised so many thoughts and emotions and rants that I'm determined to read it a second time before I voice an opinion. I find it so difficult sometimes to have a solid, well-supported opinion on an issue or an idea. I tend to rely a lot on instinct and emotion. This is not to say that opinions founded on such a basis are necessarily inferior. Most of the time it's an emotional reaction to someone else's clearly parsed argument. I just find myself so completely unable to articulate my ideas when I feel passionate about something. There's a lot of stumbling over words and cursing involved instead of a well-outlined proposal. I'll sit down with the aforementioned book and a stack of paper and see what comes out. Hopefully more than "It's shitty, but it's not, and we can do better, and does Bush really think he can do that, and why is she writing with this voice, and god why have I never seen the classist side of things....."

But for now I'm going to curl up with American Gods.

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