This year has been one for the books, and it's not because of all of the crazy things that I did, but mostly all that I learned about myself and about life and about how I want to live life. I know I discussed this some in my post about turning 28 years old, but I just continue to come more and more into that person and it feels really great! Let's look back through the months at all the shenanigans, and I'll be on this side of things thinking how I'm not even close to the same person anymore. ha !
Wanna know what's so interesting? I was really focused on what happened this summer where I had a really bad anxiety/depression spell like I've never had before, but then at the end of writing this I started to look through pictures to add and the pictures through the year brought back all of the memories and the absolute joys. There were soooo many more joys this year than sadness and I'm so so thankful for an abundantly fulfilled and blessed life and pictures to be able to remember it by. I may get made fun of for pictures, but I love being able to look back on it and smile remembering those moments. While this blog touches on all the big events, there were countless fun week night and weekend adventures, date nights, rooftops, bars, dancing, trivia, birthdays, cookouts, football games, good meals with good friends, best friends having babies, Jackson snuggles, wine nights, and so much more.
Last year we got the opportunity to go skiing, I think 4-5 times in different places in NC with different groups of friends. We did a weekend cabin trip with our best friends Rachel and Wes and another weekend with our friends Kevin and Becca and both trips were so much fun with so much outdoor adventure!
We went to COLORADO! Can y'all believe that was this year? Yea, me either. We went and stayed with our friends Bridget and Matt who were actually veryyyyy early in a pregnancy that they didn't know about while we were there, and now their sweet baby Shepherd Warren is here and adorable. Isn't life crazy? We got to ski in the most incredible Winter Park resort and I'll never forget that. Skiing that day is top 10 days of my life, not kidding. I LOVED COLORADO, and of course, per my usual, wanted to move there.
We also launched World Hunger Project, and unfortunately also within this year, we have also not been able to sustain it. I hate saying that officially out loud on the blog, because I put my heart and soul into it, but sometimes things are much harder to uphold than we realize and with work and everything else, it just wasn't feasible :(
MYRTLE BEACH MARATHON! I qualified for NYC marathon in this race, which is something that I thought I might never do and really surprised myself at the capability that I have in the marathon. This was the race that I did 3:05 and honestly, I still can't believe that happened. What an incredible experience and I got second overall in the women's, and am going back to do this race this year. It's an incredible race, and shameless plug, you get 10% off if you register with my code: FitScriptMBM (this is the half and full)
I also quit my katiesfitscript instagram after 3-4 years and growing it to a following of 68,000. I still can't believe I did that, but now that it's all behind me, I'm so glad I did. I just blog as I want, post on my personal page as I want, and I just feel really unattached to it all and free to be me. I know that I COULD have felt that way before, but I never did so it's nice.
Bostonnnn! Six weeks after I did Myrtle Beach, I did Boston just for fun. Last minute, I had a change of plans and stayed with Bethany in her hotel and it was so much fun. I haven't laughed that hard in a long time and it really set us up for a great race day. As we all know, I crapped out on that race and if you want to read more, you can read the recap. I decided that Boston is just not my cup of tea so I decided not to go back in 2018. It was still an incredible experience and one I won't forget.
I started to really change. I had a lot of down time once I quit the hustle of instagram and blogging, and I started to think a lot about life and the meaning of it all and reading lots of books. It was a really transformative time, but was also a really difficult time filled with lots of feelings of purposelessness and lack of direction. I had good days and bad days but I would say that the bad days were really abundant. (Good news: I kept fighting and now it's all good days again haha)
MY BEST FRIEND MOVED BACK TO NORTH CAROLINA AND WE WENT TO MIAMI TOGETHER! :) I'm so happy I get to have her semi close now (she's still 3.5 hours away but we make it work much better than when I was in NC and her in NYC still).
Tanner and I renewed our vows at the beginning of June and it was very precious to me. I get teary eyed thinking about it. He got me a sapphire ring, and I am so thankful for our 5.5 years of marriage, 7 years together now! We fall in love more every year!
A blur of mental illness and a beach trip and a new job -
I buried it all in running. I decided that I was going to try high mileage for the first time in my life and while I didn't think that I was being destructive with it, I was. I had no purpose other than running all the time, and I got in a really bad place. I was eating plant based, but just not enough with the amount that I was running so I lost weight I didn't need to lose. I cried a lot. I started a new job that I truly did love and still do (so thankful for my job). I would hint around about it on social media, but no one wants to air their dirty laundry so I mostly just cried to my husband and BFF's (yall are the real MVP for sticking thru this summer). I had ZERO reason to be in this headspace, but there i was, and had no clue how to get out of it. I felt very trapped. I had bouts of happiness, which is why I would post, so it wasn't that I was being fake in those moments, but just that they were rare.
I taught myself photography during this time with the help of an online course and I really enjoyed that. I had a TERRRRRRIBLE part time job and so photography made this better. I won't go into that place, because that's not appropriate, but I'm just so so thankful for my new job.
We also built a deck and decided to invest in the Shelby area. Ever since we moved back we have been off and on planning our next move. It got really bad around election season when I was like... uhhhh... I need out NOW. But, we realized that the low cost of living plus the adorable quaint atmosphere and TONS of close cities within one hour and the perfect four season climate and both of our family's close by is just all that we could ask for and more. We also both have flourishing jobs here and so we would not want to leave that.
(On that note, I'm so invested in my life here now since making this decision in July. It feels SO nice to not want to move if that makes sense. I love my home, I love my life, I love our set up, I'm just so at peace because I finally let go of this idea of perfection and how "Shelby wasn't good enough" which is so so silly).
At the end of August was when I figured out part of the reason that I was feeling really off and that was due to my blood work that I got back showing anemia and some low neutrophils and white blood cell count. My creatinine kinase and cortisol levels were really elevated as well and basically, it was just the classic overtraining. I realized that I was non intentionally "running" myself into the ground so I really had to back off.
I just recently read The Brave Athlete and I realized something that I did during that time. I disassociated myself from being an athlete when I got those labs. I gave up. I just threw in the towel, didn't train for Chicago really at all, and just blamed myself for all the mistakes I had made in that training. I personally do not believe that it was simply high mileage because there are benefits to high mileage if done appropriately and with targeted workouts within them and as long gas your lifestyle allows for proper recovery, but mine did not.
I told myself I "didn't care at all" when I did, and then I just sat around a lot. It was wonderful for healing, but it really put me in a funk of even more. I believed lies about myself that I was telling myself. And that's not how it should be. You are an athlete even through your hard times if you choose to be and hustle in different ways to get back out there. So, there's August. ha!
TANNER TOOK HIS BCOP EXAM! Tanner literally studied every night for a year. I've never seen someone pour something so hard into a certification exam. He truly wanted to learn it and be able to use it at his job and he did it. I'm so proud. He loves his work so much that he is always just excited to go and also to do extra stuff on the side like reading new journal articles and trying to get papers published and get new certifications so that he can better serve the hospital in Shelby. Y'all, shameless plug but it just makes me so happy to see him happy and fulfilled.
I announced that I was going to revamp Katiesfitscript in a new way and do it mostly on youtube. Embarrassingly enough, that did not happen. This was mostly because right when I did this, my job gave me full time and there just wasn't enough time in the day. I do want to be around more on the blog, even in 2018, because I'm over all the petty things that bothered me before, but I should have been more proactive in the research of how long it takes to put videos together. I wanted to provide education and science and that is one of my goals for 2018, but I also have a goal in 2018 to not jump the gun too quickly on goals that need time, attention, and organization. I realized in September that just how I like for my house and closet to have no clutter, I prefer this in my work as well. Busyness was a badge of honor I gave myself for farrrr too long.
(I hope you can see that this is all apart of the process of learning about myself this year. I think I've always been pretty vulnerable, but I also think that many times I've been hesitant to not look as if I had it all together. Truth be told, I'm feeling pretty together now. hahaha! So, I won't lie when I do feel put together, but I also won't lie when I wasn't which was June-September.)
What a fun race that was! I've talked a lot about it and you can read the recap HERE. It was everything I could have dreamed of and more. I originally thought I'd try for sub 3, but this outcome was even better. I'm so thankful for that race and it's revival for me in the endurance world. I claimed I was going to take time off for a LONG time afterwards, and it's not been that I forced myself to continue but rather I realized how much I really do love it on that day and why I do what I do. It was such a moving marathon for me.
I really started focusing in on what was important to me. I finally got out of my slump and just started to enjoy life again. There was nothing big that happened and that was just how I liked it. I spent a lot of time at home and organizing our house and we started putting together a new bedroom, guest bedroom, and a playroom for Jackson. We are so blessed with our home, we are thankful for it being here for us when we weren't invested in it, and we are excited to continue life here.
Tanner's work is 1 mile away. I work from home a lot and see my clients 10 minutes away. We live 1.5 miles from our downtown that's adorable and I run through all the time. We can get our groceries in less than an hour there and back to Walmart. We can be in big cities within 1-2 hours in tons of different directions (Charlotte, Hickory, Greenville, Asheville, Spartanburg, Boone, etc etc) and we just absolutely have fallen in love with small town life. TBH-I don't think I'll ever move cities, buttttt I also don't know where life will lead so I'm open haha!
I also went to New Jersey/NYC for a week with my work by myself and it was the MOST joyful introverted week of my life. Omg, I need one of those per year please?!
London was just the absolute best. I'm reading a historical fiction novel (The Alice Network) and it's based in London and it just makes my heart sing and makes me so happy. I'm so thankful that we have the finances to do a trip like that. I don't want to disregard how abundantly blessed we feel in that way.
I want to put together all of my thoughts for the intentions of 2018 but I will say that I think that we are going to not travel except for my races in 2018. We realized how many cool things that we keep putting off doing in our direct area and we want to make the time to do those things. If we take a week off of work, it will be a staycation exploring different things that North Carolina has to offer. Tons of people visit here from all over the world, or look to move here and here we are jet setting across the world for other experiences. How silly! For example, there is a spring one mile from my house. It's a pretty big deal, but I've never been to get the water. I'm sure if there was a spring like that in London, I would just be all about going. THE WORLD IS OUR OYSTER RIGHT IN FRONT OF OUR EYEBALLS FOLKS! ;) haha!
Some other fun things that I want to do in 2018 that are an hour from my house:
- 1. Camping at Carolina Beach (okay this one is technically 3.5 hours)
- 2. Hornets professional basketball game
- 3. Chimney Rock National Park
- 4. Dirty Dancing (scene from the movie where he lifts her up-this is the lake with a restaurant)
- 5. Joy Performance Theatre (theatre is good no matter where I go)
- 6. Looking Glass Falls (SO MANY WATERFALLS AROUND HERE)
- 7. Rooftops in Charlotte- we have been to the one pictured but want to go to the others
- 8. Sliding Rock-you literally slide down a rock
- 9. Land of Oz - there is a theme park with a yellow brick road - I mean come on! HAHA!
So of course I've started a spreadsheet of all this fun to be had! :)
I can't wait for 2018!!! It's going to be a blast and I'm taking with me all that I learned from 2017 in such a beautiful way!