Having some crazy insomnia this morning. Not only can I not fall back to sleep, but also my mind races with every though imaginable. I’m thinking about the day ahead, the bootcamp workout I’ve got this morning, cleaning house and grocery shopping with my roommate tonight. Then I started thinking about Saturday’s agenda.

I’ve come to the striking realization that I have trouble (a lot of trouble) staying present in the moment. And I’m not just referring to mornings when I can’t sleep. I’m constantly looking for distraction from living in the moment. I live for the next workout, the next meal, the next meeting, the next weekend, or just the next time I get to go to bed. Next, next, next…

And to pass time at work I check social media. I read things that are not work-related. I plan my workout. I find focusing on the here and now to be very difficult feat. Another thing is, I can’t even watch a television show without checking my phone and looking at facebook and twitter constantly. It’s like watching TV is not “stimulating” enough of a distraction for me.

I feel like what I need to address is why I am avoiding the present moment, and why it’s so hard for me to constantly need to know the future. As I type this I remember how my anxiety-type personalities needs some sort of structure and ability to predict. It calms me to know what’s going to happen next and when. But I think there’s a fine line where this seemingly healthy “structure” can go into overdrive and ruin what is supposed to be a happy, healthy life.

I really don’t want time to pass by me. I want to pay attention to each and every day. If the past 3 months have taught me anything, it’s that I need to appreciate every day, every person, and every experience that comes my way. Life is a wonderful thing. And the best part about it is that it is my choice on how I live it. Our lives are the one thing that truly no one can change for us. We get to decide how to live. We get the full experience of every day. So why not make the most of it?

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Currently

Stole this idea from a few other bloggers because it seems like fun, and I think it will be interesting to look back on this post in a few months and see how things may change or stay the same…

Current Books

Do journal articles count? Haha..just kidding, kind of. I’ve been trying to finish David Nutt’s book, Drugs Without the Hot Air for the past few months. It’s a slow read, but it’s informative and pertains to my professional interests.

book

Current Music

I’m loving all sorts of “poppy” stuff right now, namely, things that are great workout songs. My “Recently Added” songs include:

#thatPOWER (feat. Justin Bieber)- will.i.am

Blurred Lines (feat. T.I. & Pharrell)- Robin Thicke

Get Lucky (feat. Pharrell Williams)- Daft Punk

Current Guilty Pleasure

Trash TV. Lately, when I get home from work and want to do something mindless for a little while, I will watch any and every Real Housewives show that Bravo will provide…

Current Nail Color

Au naturel over here. Though,  I impulse-bought some silver/dark grey at CVS this weekend, so I think that’s next in the line up.

Current Drink

Hmm…I’ve been really into margaritas lately.Maybe it’s the hot weather,                                                              but margaritas have sounded good pretty much every time I’ve thought about it!

marg

Current Food

Still loving me some Creamy Dreamy Protein Custard Oats–I’ve seriously been eating them every morning. They are the perfect combination of foods that is tasty and satisfying!!

Current Favorite Show

Game of Thrones, obviously–But I’m getting really nervous about the season finale that is next week…some crazy shit went down last night and I’m still just a bit traumatized.

Current Wish List

New running/workout shoes. Since I love my Brooks Ravennas, I’d love to have some in this color…

shoe

Current Needs

More time to ride my bike! I feel like I’ve been living for weekend rides lately, and my goal this summer is to try to work more weekday rides into my schedule.

Current Indulgence

Honestly, I haven’t been doing a lot of “indulging” lately. And writing this makes me realize that the most I’ve indulged in food-wise lately has been Mexican food–chips and dip. Spending is basically non-existent in these parts…my grocery bill is the highest withdrawal from my bank account ha. So, I’m going to “indulge” in some birthday cake tonight with friends and family!

Current Blessing

My parents. I don’t know where I would be without them. They keep me sane, put up with me when I’m a bitch, and help me in every way possible. I am so lucky.

Current Outfit

I started writing this post when I was wearing scrubs at school earlier, but not, I’m home, wearing flip flops, jeans, and a comfy v-neck shirt from Old Navy. Minimal make-up and hair in a pony tail. THIS is my style 🙂

Current Excitement

Celebrating the guy’s birthday tonight! I’m making us a nice dinner for two, then family and friends are joining us for dessert–birthday CAKE!

Thursday Thoughts

1. A friend and I did a peaceful 12-mile ride this morning out by the water. For a minute there I forgot I was in Mississippi:

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2. I’m doing a group 50-mile ride Saturday. I registered and everything, so no backing out. I’m excited/nervous!

3. Headed out of town next week. Another case of “excited/nervous”. But what I am most looking forward to is the fact that I am going completely solo to a new place, to meet new people. I feel like that’s how you truly learn about yourself. Where there are no preconceived notions about who I’m “supposed” to be, because no one knows me. I can’t wait.

4. How is it already Thursday?! This week has flown. And there’s still so much to accomplish!

5. Mother’s Day is this Sunday. Considering ALL THE THINGS my mom does for me on a daily, hourly, minute-by-minute basis, I am not missing out on this opportunity to celebrate and spoil her with goodies. I hope she feels loved every day, but it’s nice to have a special moment to make her feel extra special. She deserves it.

6. Just for laughs

LAB WORK:

OcwxNco(http://whatshouldwecallgradschool.tumblr.com/post/49876416923/lab-work)

 

Relax

 

 

Me and my buddy went for a little walk this afternoon.
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It was much needed after a long day on campus. My head is still spinning with research-oriented thoughts, yet my brain feels like it’s headed into a shut-down mode. The walk helped. I listened to music and then started taking pictures of the scenery.

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Spring in Mississippi can be quite lovely. It’s green EVERYWHERE and the temperature is just right (aka, not yet 200 degrees Fahrenheit like it will be in a few weeks).

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I focused on the green on the ground, the green in the trees, the breeze in the air and the slowly setting sun shining through trees like this one. And then, I decided to look straight up and this is what I saw:

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Now if that’s not a de-stressor, then I don’t know what is. I came home with a clear(er) head, and a bit more relaxed than when I had first walked through the door. And I know someone else appreciated the quality time outside too.

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He’s my motivation for getting outside after work most days. Just one more thing I love him for.

Time for a bedtime snack and then actual bedtime!

**I need more tips for relaxing and setting aside time to actually do it!!

 

Mind Warp Monday

Oh Monday. I can’t say it’s been a bad day, just a mentally taxing one. I’m eyeballs deep in literature right now, and I’m having trouble focusing on one idea at a time. Every sentence I read draws me off on yet another tangent. This is supposed to earn me a PhD, or something.

Luckily, I had a wonderful weekend that was FULL of fun and activities (2 bike rides!) in beautiful weather, so I can’t complain. I work hard, I play hard. Sometimes the other way around.

So, I’ll leave this Monday with some positive thoughts and inspiration for the rest of the week:

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And here’s what I’ll be doing–

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Why

When tragedies such as the one that happened yesterday in Boston occur, I can’t help but ask why? It is my nature to want to know the cause of something, especially something so devastating that impacts us all. The rational person in me knows that asking why doesn’t take it back, doesn’t change the situation, and the best thing we can all do is hope for comfort for those who lost loved ones yesterday and for those who experienced it firsthand.

I have been thinking a lot lately about perspective. Specifically, that I’ve been getting lost in my point-of-view lately and forgetting that there are others in the world fighting much greater battles than the one I have in my life. It’s when I talk to people…no wait, it’s when I listen to others, that I realize how important it is for all of us to step back out of our own problems and situations every day and think about the big picture. Our day-to-day worries are so minute compared to many other much greater issues.

This was a ramble, but it’s been on my mind. I truly hate what happened yesterday, but I am so thankful that there are people there who are self-sacrificing and able come to the aid of those in times of need.

My Weekend…Instagram Style

In order to make this Monday less painful than it’s already been (I’m just dragging today), I thought I reminisce about the awesome weekend I had through words and pictures.

This past Friday was a long one (TWSS). In any type of animal research, there is a lot of work involved, and conducting research on drug abuse is no different. We had a full day of surgeries (on a Friday!) and therefore my weekend started with one of these…

Stoli vodka martini, extra dry. The only way to go.

Stoli vodka martini, extra dry. The only way to go.

I was in bed by 10:30pm Friday night and it felt fantastic. Saturday began with my usual ritual of waking up and taking my time with breakfast and coffee before heading to a favorite of mine: TRX/spin class! This combination workout kicks my butt everytime while simultaneously making me feel like a million bucks. Now tell me how that works?

Saturday also included an awesome 20ish mile leisure ride on the multi-use trail with a friend. And by leisure, I mean we plopped down in the grass for a 20 minute break to stare out at the reservoir and enjoy the weather.

I love my Trek bike and I plan to do a post dedicated to my road bike soon.

I love my Trek bike and I plan to do a post dedicated to my road bike soon.

 

Saturday night was spent grilling out at my parents’ house with friends. We have a great patio and there is nothing I love more than sitting out on it and drinking wine just as the weather is warming up. My dad grilled some grouper and red snapper fillets that my family caught this summer on a deep sea fishing trip in Florida. (Don’t worry, they’d been frozen ever since)

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Saturday night ended with me attempting to stay up past 10pm and drink wine and chat, but what really happened was this:

Covered in dogs. Best sleep ever.

Covered in dogs. Best sleep ever.

Sunday began lazily, but I went on a pretty challenging 25 mile ride with another group of friends. It was another great day for outdoor cycling and we were on some really nice country roads that make you feel like Lance Armstrong…at least when you’re going downhill.

 

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And of course, no Sunday would be complete for the next couple of weeks without a little GOT action…Am I right?

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And that is my weekend in a very small nutshell…now I know why I’m sad on Mondays…

 

One Month To Go…

Yesterday marked exactly one month until my 25th birthday. Honestly, I’m not one to think very much of age and growing older, I mainly look at birthdays as an excuse to celebrate and feel special for a day. Our culture tells me that turning 25 is a “milestone”…yea, like 18, 21, 30, 40 and all the other ones are. Culture also tells me that I am officially an adult now too. I think I’m pretty grown-up at 24 though. In fact, most of my habits are those of someone much more mature than I am. (9pm bedtime anyone?)

aging

Regardless of how this sounds, I’m excited to celebrate my birthday in a month (I’ll take any excuse to drink a margarita). I think it would be nice to take the next 30 days to focus on me and to focus on aspects of my life that are great and aspects that are not-so-great. Where can I make changes? Where do I want to stay the same?

I know for sure there are a few areas I can look at with a more discriminative eye:

  • Organization of schoolwork- I’m finding it difficult to organize my thoughts and create coherent ideas in working towards my dissertation right now. I feel like this is related to the lack of organization of information and research. So, every time I read something, I make a note about it. That way it’s not another useless fact floating around in no man’s land.
  • Taking my time- I’m the ultimate multitasker. And I mean that in the worst way possible. I rarely am just “watching TV”, I’m usually watching TV, surfing the internet on my iPad and thinking about other things. I’m going to try my hardest to do One. Thing. At. A. Time. I think it would help my always cluttered brain settle down a bit, and I just might feel like I’m in less of a hurry all of the time.
  • Communication- Because I am all over the place most days when it comes to work and life outside of work, I feel like I’ve lost a sense of healthy communication. Some days I can barely squeeze in time to take my dog out, much less human connection. This might go hand in hand with slowing things down a bit and taking my time, even if I don’t feel like I have the time. There is ALWAYS time to do the things I want and need to do for myself. I’m going to stop living by the clock a little bit and see how this effects my ability to give attention where attention is due in areas of my life.

Well, this post took a different direction than expected but that’s okay. Hopefully writing these things down will help me to take them to heart over the next month, and maybe turning 25 will be more than just another year older.

 

 

 

Motivation

I needed a little inspiration and motivation to get my butt out the door to the gym this morning. Thanks to Twitter, I got what I needed from @Women_Fit:

The harder you work, the better the results will be.

I can’t help but think this is a great quote for many things in life, not just exercise. But this morning, that’s what I used it for.

This was fitting, mainly because on this morning’s agenda was HIIT on the treadmill, which has certainly started to grow on me, but that doesn’t make it easy. But as I’ve learned many, many mornings before, getting up and out of bed is the hardest part, and once I’m at the gym, 9 times out of 10 I’m going to have a great workout (of course, there’s that 1 time out of 10 that your body just says no, but hey it’s worth the risk).

So I got a little crazy with PicMonkey and actually made a cute little graphic documenting what I did:

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I love pyramid-style workouts, because the minute you think you are going to die (aka the 1 minute sprint) you get a 1 minute recovery and it’s quite literally, all downhill from there. This workout kept things interesting this morning and I was finished and sweaty in a little over 3o minutes. I needed MAJOR stretching afterwards too.
Now that I’ve spent entirely too much time editing and playing with PicMonkey, I need to take my puppy dog out and head to work…

Saturday Morning Montage

Up at 5:00am this morning–decided not to fight it. I had a million things running through my head, and it feels good to be up, peaceful and productive…

organization

organization

cleaning

cleaning

enjoyment

enjoyment

Easter bunny

Easter bunny

 

tired from too much fun last night

tired from too much fun last night