Satan’s Peanut Butter (Spartan Super)

Well, the best thing I can say is I finished. The worst thing I can say is I actually paid to walk through the valley of the shadow of death!

Who:      Me

What:    The Reebok Spartan Super Obstacle Race

When:   October 10th, 2015

Where:  Durhamtown Plantation Resort, Union Point, Ga.

Why:     Still trying to figure that shit out!

I really don’t even know where to start. Ok, I know, it has rained for the last 2 weeks in Georgia. And i knew this, after all I live in Georgia. I haven’t walked in my backyard because it’s marshy. What made me think I would want to wade in, at some points waist deep mud? It’s a special breed of uniquely different people who are mud runners and obstacle racers, and I suppose I’m one of them. I wasn’t born this way, I evolved into this person. Evolution is a bitch, IJS.  Because I’m still recovering, I’m going to give you the bullet point recap.

  • There was no cell service about 5 miles out from the venue (how do people live like that)
  • When we parked I stepped out into a mud puddle ( That was the first sign that said, GO HOME)
  • Our wave started at 11:45am. The Spartans were hyped. Aroo! Oh yeah in true Spartan fashion to get to the start, you had to go over a 6′ wall!
  • Usually Spartans are out like lightning. Yesterday, we were out more like pudding. This is were it started! It was EVERYWHERE. It was thick and the color of creamy Jiff in some places. In others dirty auburn and slick as Crisco, Georgia red clay at it’s most evil.  It was the evil disrespectful mud from hell, aka Satan’s peanut butter. And he spread that crap thick and wide.
  • Yeah Spartans were laughing as they slid along that first 100 yards or so. Yeah, not me! I immediately began to have flashbacks from my Savage race, fresh hell, aka Muddy Fukka. I thought I knew but I had no idea what was to come.
  • Ya know the sound of heavy fish being dropped?  That was the sound of the day and it began almost immediately.  Slow and steady. Stay up.
  • Then Ro fell. Ro was one of my race mates. Whoops! You good? Yeah. And  Ro was up.
  • Then I did some sort of curtsy, karate move as I slid across the mud, but I remained up. Let me help you with that move, picture it, I slid to catch my balance, slid, quick stop, the right leg goes behind the left, and I bend forward at the waist (curtsy portion) arms typical karate arms, up at chest level bent at the elbows hands chop ready. That my friends was my move of the day.
  • Then Jason fell. You good. Yeah. And Jason was up.
  • Floppy fish sound accompanied by a collective, “Ohhh” from behind me. Somebody fell.
  • I felt like James Brown as I slid across the disrespectful mud. But I didn’t feel good.
  • First obstacle, over the metal 6-7′ horse X’s 2 or 3. My mind is cloudy right now.
  • And then miles of mud. And Ro fell, hard. You good? Yeah. And Ro was back up.
  • Curtsy karate move, but I’m still up.
  • Then Jason fell. You good? Yeah. Jason, another race mate.
  • More satans peanut butter this time it was the crunchy kind. And Ro fell. You good? Yeah.
  • Next obstacle, log carry through the stream and up the muddy embankment. God help me.
  • More mud.
  • Then Ro got stuck in knee-high Satan’s peanut butter. Luckily the Spartans are a kindly cult. Yeah cult, because obviously something is wrong with this entire situation.
  • Then I got stuck in thigh deep Satan’s peanut butter. I tried to claw my way out. Then there were helping hands all the way around me, literally. The Spartans pulled me out of the muck and mire and deposited me on a less disrespectful plot of Satan’s peanut butter. My God, My God. I just need to see one set of “Footprints” now.
  • Next obstacle, up the side of the mountain using a rope. A rope that stopped a good 7′ from the bottom of the mountain side. I’m 5′. Run, leap, hope you grab the bottom knot of the rope and you can grip it before you side back down the Crisco coated mountain side. 3rd time I got it. I held on like the like of fire was beneath me. Clawing, pulling, stepping, praying, sliding. I made it.
  • Ro and I looked at each other like “Really, WTH are we doing?”
  • More mud.
  • Ro fell. You good? Yeah. And Ro was back up.
  • RO! yells a voice from ahead. Yeah, she answered. Denna!! I’m still up. That would be Jason, checking on us, lol.
  • OMG, it appeared like a an oasis in the desert. I tiny  stream of running water. We stop to free our shoes, and hands of this, hateful, disrespectful mud. Then this happened, steps out of water into mud, :-/ and bear crawls up the hill. Looks back at water but keeps moving forward.
  • And then, it happened! Flopping fish sound. Oh wait, that’s me! 5-6 races in and it’s my first fall. You good, they ask? Yeah. And I was up :-/
  • Then Ro said, “Do you see those people over there?” As she points through the woods. “Yep,” I said. Without words we headed in that direction. Nah it wasn’t necessarily the outlined course but its the way we went. Take from that what you will.
  • Mile 4.
  • More mud.
  • Karate curtsy move.
  • Bucket carry, I’ll pass. I should have brought a doctor’s note.
  • And then I fell, proposal style, on one knee hand extended to present the ring. You good? Yeah and I was up. Damn!
  • And then Ro fell, her glasses off. Yes, I said fell her glasses off. And they rested above her head almost embedded in Satan’s peanut butter. OMG, we yell, Me and Kaurey. Kaurey is our other race mate. We just stop and stand still. There is no running over to assist. She moved, You good? Yeah. And Ro was up.
  • And then we blazed yet another trail, that was uniquely ours :-). Again take that however you choose.
  • Then more mud.
  • Spartans gathered around tire tracks filled with water like wild animals at the water hole, trying to clear our hands of this, mud that clings like Elmer’s glue, if only for a second.
  • I’m down.
  • Ro’s down.
  • Kaurey is blinded by splattering mud.
  • More mud.
  • A collective, “Oooh,” somebody fell, again.
  • And then as we came to a road crossing, and the emergency 4 wheelers came flying by. First 4 wheeler, patient is wrapped like leftovers in the foil blanket. Possibly with a neck brace. Next 4 wheeler, patient, has leg outstretched and a look of agony on his face. “That’s not very encouraging,” says Jason.
  • Mile 5.
  • More mud.
  • Another trail blazed. Me and Ro leading others to the promised land. However, we lost Kaurey and Jason.
  • Random Spartan hug from Christina. I don’t know who she was.
  • Another damn near impossible hill to descend. I’ll slide on my butt. Walking away from the hill, I say to no one in particular. Aw man feels like I pooped in my pants. Fellow Spartan chimes in, “If it makes you feel better, it looks like it as well.” I looked at his butt as he walks by and reply, “Poop twins.”
  • Then mud splashed around my eye. Hands caked with mud, shirt caked as well. “No clean spots,” I said out loud again to no one in particular. Random Spartan says “My elbow is clean. I got you.” And she cleans my eye with her elbow. Aroo!
  • Blazed another trail up the side of the mountain, our new followers hot on our heels, lol. We get to the top and survey the scene. We quickly realize we should have blazed a different trail, lol. More mud.
  • Floppy fish sound, Oh lawd, it’s Ro! Concussion check :-/ And Ro is up. Thank goodness.
  • Again, clean water! Yeah sure it was red but it was more than an inch and it was running. Squatting Spartans, kneeling Spartans, wading Spartans, around the watering hole. Several dozen can be seen coming from all directions to partake in the mud removal. All we needed was a narrator, “The Spartans, spot the watering hole and the herd begins to gather… Steve Irwin voice. LMAO
  • And more mud.
  • Then we spot an obstacle, Ro wants to blaze a trail. I strongly suggest we do this one. It’s the military low  crawl under the barbwire, up hill. I later apologized to Ro, lol! Whoa, hair caught. Ouch, back caught. Wait I’m sliding back downhill. Nooo! Digs fingers in and and create claw marks in the disrespectful mud. Someone puts their hand under my foot and says, “I got you. Push against my hand.” I looked back at the muddy face and just smiled and said thank you! I in turn provided that assist to the guy in front of me. Aroo!
  • Top of the hill Whip and Nae Nae session with my race mates 🙂
  • Lawd, will this thing ever end?
  • Those laughing joyful Spartan of the first 100 yards are so, can now be heard saying, “I’m so over this.” “This freaking mud is outta hand.” “Argh.” Yes, the mud struggle is an SOB!
  • Trail blazed.
  • Mile 8 sign. I want to fall on my knees and thank God, but still gotta 1/2 to go, anything could happen.
  • More freaking MUD!!
  • Bear crawl.
  • More mud.
  • I can smell the smoke from the burning fire at the finish line, last obstacle. Yes!!
  • I want to run to the finish I can see it. But I also want to clear the fire. Run or burn?
  • I walked. I jumped and survived.

Next on to the Beast. Gotta get my Trifecta!!

SN: They had no water for us to shower at the venue. Really! They ran out of water! So we had to peel off what we could get in Kaurey’s cream colored interior car with more red mud than skin. I felt so bad. We decided to go to the Flying J truck stop. Best $12 I’ve ever spent on a shower. Yes, we showered at the truck stop. I was thinking yuck. But let me tell you, it was as clean as a whistle and quite stylish! They provided everything needed, soap, towels, and wash cloth. However, I’m funny about the towels and wash cloths, so I used my own. I’d do that again without a doubt, the truck stop…not the race, lol lol! Nah I’m Beast bound.  Oh and my total calorie burn was 3300!! Boom

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I Rock!

Hey guys!! Yesterday I went rock climbing! I had so much fun. But if you guys know anything about me, you there’s at least 1 story 🙂
I was a little nervous because I have never been rock climbing  before so I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect. Honestly I was nervous about getting to the top of the walls. That, my friends was not a problem. The problem was coming down. They thought I was just going to let go and drop 😌 Chile stop it. Yes, I was harnessed in, but I don’t know that harness, or pulley system like THAT! We had just met, lol.  So I Spider-Man’d up like a champ and did likewise coming down, lmao!! 

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When I got to the top, a fear of heights kicked in like a turbo booster! Honey Boo boo chile! I just could not let go! Then I climbed a partial way and tried to let go. Then halfway, then 3/4 of the way. I could NOT let go!

Then I was challenged by one of the ladies. I NEVER back down from a challenge or someone saying I can’t do something. So I spun on my heels and I shimmed up the wall like a champ. And then this happened, I looked down, father forgive me! The ladies I went with were very supportive and screamed NO DONT LOOK DOWN!! lol lol! They were saying just let GOOOOOO!! After a few minutes I was like freak it! This belaying down does NOT win!!
I let go! And I lived to tell the story! 😃 I had so much fun! I can’t wait to go back! It’s a great workout and a lot of fun. Oh and the fella in the photo is now my Atlanta Rocks boo! Had much fun and talked much trash with him. I highly recommend trying this if you haven’t. If you have what was your experience?

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Zucchini Alfredo with Chicken

This is a delicious alternative to traditional pasta alfredo. This is an awesome way to get your veggies in as well as enjoy a filling low carb, high protein meal that bursts with flavor. Healthy eating can be fun exciting and delish. Gone are the days of celery sticks and rice cakes 🙂

I came up with this because I wanted something filling and satisfying. Initially I was going to make spaghetti but then I had a taste for something more creamy. So my Zucchini alfredo was born. I used zucchini as well as summer squash as the basis for my dish. I then added a favorite, spinach as well as some peppers for a little color. It would also be great with some added broccoli instead of spinach.

This is also a great dish that can be prepped in advance.

Bon Appetite!

Fall in Love

I know this is where I am in my journey. It’s partially where my never quit attitude comes from. I love working out. I love trying new workouts even more. I don’t miss the junk food or other crap food. Although I do have it occasionally (transparency 🙂 ) And occasionally is just that, maybe once or twice a month and it’s planned and controlled. However, most of the time it does not live up to my expectation and I don’t even finish it.

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I didn’t get here overnight, but with a mindset for reaching my goals and just being healthier I arrived at  this point. In my opinion losing a significant amount of weight and keeping it off is one of the difficult and most rewarding things one can accomplish. It’s my belief that you must love the process in order to be successful. When you fall in love with the process it becomes a lifestyle. And this is my  lifestyle. It’s not a diet. I plan to live the rest of my life this way. I’m not doing this for summer, or an event I’m doing this because I love me and I love this journey, this process. I have learned to accept the downs and relish the ups. XO GRGT

Muddy Fukka: My First Savage Race

…after several minutes of being plagued by fear and doubt I simply took a deep breath, summoned my inner strength, looked at the treetops that I stood eye level with, took a step and flew.

My First Savage Race

I was so super excited to participate in my first Savage race. I was up at the crack of dawn to get to the venue and fulfill my volunteer duties. As I arrived at the venue the first thing I saw was, mud. As I drove the scenic horse farm, I noticed the muddy  uphill drive. When I exited my truck and walked towards the volunteer area I noticed, you guessed it, mud! This mud was about 3-4 inches thick. Not only was it mud but it was thick gooey make you walk like a baby deer on ice kind of mud and it was everywhere. Did I say everywhere? What meant to say was it was literally everywhere. No problem I expected to get muddy and dirty just not within my first 10 minutes, before I even checking in.
My race buddy Ro, and I were assigned the start  position. We checked armbands and bibs to make sure people were where they were supposed to be. It was a descent job. Then out of the blue we were asked by one of the race officials to participate in the medal ceremony. We handed out the medals to those that placed in the Pro Wave as well as those who placed in their age group. That was cool.

Finally, it was our time to hit the course. I started the race with my GORMR buddies I met when I participated in the Spartan Sprint earlier this year. Within the first 10 minutes I was disrespected by this black sludge, the consistency of under mixed cement, sent straight from Lucifer himself to wreak havoc on me, Muddy Fukka!! It was about the length of a football field going uphill. Hell, I thought it was the first obstacle, seriously.  Especially since that was the FIRST time I lost my shoe. The FIRST time I had to bear crawl up a hill and the FIRST time I thought WTF did I get myself into. And then Ro fell as quick as a flash. I was thinking, oh shit racer down! But she got up and kept moving.
Word on the street is this venue has not seen that much rain in many years. And it rained all last week. Really that was the hardest part trying to run, walk, crawl through the mud. This is how difficult it was for me to move in this muddy fukka, I looked down at my heart rate monitor to see how many calories I had burned at that point and it said 506 calories, I looked at the time that had elapsed it said 26 minutes, my heart rate said, “I sure hope they have an AED tucked away out in this forest because yo ass gonna need it, and soon.” I kid you not it had all of that written on the screen, and 188 bpm.  I was dying.  And then Ro fell as quick as a flash. I was thinking oh shit, racer down! But she got up and kept moving.

Then it was crab walk down one hill, then immediately bear crawl up the next. I have never experienced mud like this in all my life. At one point I had 3 different shades of mud on legs, red, black and grey. I became a mudologist that day.  The black is a deceitful  SOB, and there to put you on your ass before you even realize it’s happening. I vowed from the beginning I’m NOT falling.  The grey is a sucker, it will literally suck the shoes right  off of your feet. Picture this, Terminator 2 the T1000 is caught in that liquid nitrogen spill and his foot gets stuck, he try’s to move it but it won’t and he looks at it like WTH? Then he finally moves it but he really just snatches his leg off and leaves the foot, yep that’s how I was, I snatched my foot out and left my shoe, several times. Muddy Fukka!         

I discovered the red clay variety is my favorite because it’s easily compacted for better footing and it lacks the malodorous aroma of the others. From all that bear crawling and crab walking I was sure my hands would never come clean again. So every chance I got, whether in a running creek, water challenge or water station I was trying to wash my hands.  But, they were futile attempts, seems every time I stepped out of water my feet and hands were immediately right back in that damn mud. That mud actually gave me a bit of ‘tude something I rarely have in general but never at a race.  And then Ro fell as quick as a flash. I was thinking oh shit, racer down! But she got up and kept moving.

I kept noticing stranded single shoes, that had been made orphans by that damn mud. Their mates forever lost in the muddy abyss at Moonlight Stables. Some of the trees and twigs on the side of the trail had been COVERED in mud where people were using them as natural handrails to make it up or down hill on their feet as opposed to their butts, sides or backs. And most importantly, to not become a human bowling ball looking to make a strike on the other racers. Someone yelled, “Be careful there’s a really bad patch right there.” And then Ro fell as quick as a flash. I was thinking oh shit, racer down! But she got up and kept moving.

As I struggled up one particular hill I lost my footing and could not reach a branch or a twig to stop my descent (picture me sneaker surfing backwards down hill complete with surfer stance). When all of a sudden there where hands on my ass, and a mans  voice  said, “I got gotcha girl. You are not going any further. Up ya go.” Y’all I didn’t even look back to see who had such a firm grip on my ass. All I was thinking was yeah hold that ass and leggo! And up we went.  When we got to the top I discovered his name was Michael.  And this would not be the last time he would have a handful of my ass. After a few times, I suggested,  since you have already gotten to second base, maybe we should exchange numbers and go out. Not only did we laugh but the folks around us were laughing and trying not to slide back downhill. And then Ro fell as quick as a flash. I was thinking oh shit, racer down! But this time I could not contain my laughter. I totally stripped that tree branch free of every leaf it had trying to hold on grasping at anything, yet continuing to slip and laugh. The laughter became contagious. But true to form Ro got up and kept it moving.
On to the “Other” obstacles. Shriveled Richard is a huge ice bath. Not only do you have to get in it but you have to go under a half wall. Ole Dick took my breath away when I first got in, and when I went under lawd, I can’t describe how it felt to totally submerge myself in that literally ice-cold water. I can’t remember all  of the obstacles, there were at least 25. So, I’ll just share the ones that stood out for me. Nut Smasher, you had to traverse these warped wiggly balance beams that were over a huge mud puddle. I tried, got half way and into the water I went. I was cold, But I washed my hands, lol. Colon Blow 5000 was actually fun. It was a 24 inch wide tube you had to crawl up, then without warning it tipped down and “blew you out into what else, mud! It was sorta of like a seesaw. Hands first in the mud, argh! Lumberjack Lane, I carried a 4×4 1/4 mile, that was probably the easiest obstacle. Thor’s Grundle, I had to under 3 walls that were in mud pools. Slick ass mud kinda just shot you into the water. I didn’t care, another chance to washed my hands and then had to use them to crawl out, smh. Me So Thorny, required me to low crawl under barbed wire through the mud maybe 50 yards. Then there was  Colossus a near VERTICAL 24 foot slide. It was fun, it’s lightening fast and I know I was airborne for a good 3 seconds once I hit the bottom of the slide, and before I hit the water. Super cool, yet a little intimidating I must admit.There was one (don’t remember the name) but we had to climb over a series of logs that were maybe 5-6 feet high. I got over the first one on my own, but had issues with the others. Scooter, assisted me, by holding my waist as I jumped over. 1-2-3, and up and over I went. Either I was stronger than we thought or he was stronger than I thought, because I totally overshot the log did some sort of SWAT roll and continued to roll down hill. All we could all do was laugh.  Off to the next obstacle and say it with me, and then Ro fell as quick as a flash. I was thinking oh shit, racer down! But she got up and kept moving.

However, the obstacle that took the cake for me was Davy Jones’ Locker, 15 feet high and you had to jump off the platform into 15 feet of water. I had no idea I was afraid of heights or water definitely not both. But put them together and there you go, Fear.com. I stood on that platform 15 minutes. All of my race buddies had gone, some twice and I just could not make myself jump. But I knew if I left and didn’t do it, I would regret it. I prayed and  cried up there, yes, literally nose running crying and I couldn’t even wipe it because my hands were muddy. Muddy Fukka.  No less than 25 people gathered at the bottom cheering me on. At one point they were actually chanting Denna, Denna, Denna!  Some dudes riding the property stopped in their truck and blew the horn in support and the paramedic actually came up, and said he would jump with me. He said he had participated in this obstacle 20 or 30 times and never had he done this to help someone. I think that was suppose to make me feel better but it just made me feel worse.  I really felt horrible it was taking me so long to jump. I stood there higher than the treetops trying to summon the courage to just be free and fly. So many words of encouragement and I was heading to the steps saying I just can’t with muddy tears and snot everywhere. Several things went through my mind at that moment, I tell my kids to try, you can do anything you set your mind to do. Second, I’m not a quitter, and third what would I tell you all and my trainer. I can’t tell you all I quit. Then I cried some more. So many arms were around me at that point saying it’s ok you tried. But I had not. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks and my tears stopped and I walked to the edge, half of my muddy feet teetered  off the platform  and I simply said, “Honey please help me.” and with my next breath I flew. Though my flight brief, I felt totally relaxed and all fear was gone.  When I finally, resurfaced, I don’t have the words to describe how I felt. I remember saying ,”Thank you.” Then I heard the cheers and applause and there were high 5’s in the water. Scuba Steve was there to offer assistance,  the paramedic was in the water with me, as well as the lifeguard who had come up on the platform to jump with me. It was amazing. I won’t soon forget get Davey Jones’ Locker. Needless to say that was the most memorable part of the Savage Race for me. With that being said,  I think I’ll stop there.
I have never felt more deserving of a medal and a t-shirt in all my races. So thankful for my GORMR buddies, Craig, Nick, Lindsey and Scooter for staying with me throughout the race. Thanks for backtracking Craig 🙂 And of course Ro, we started together and finished together.   I have asked myself now that it’s over, would I do the Savage again? My answer, yes. This race really pulled my inner beast out. That mud tho! I was so SUPER sore, legs, butt, cardiovascular and respiratory systems threatened to shut down but the bigger question is, “But did you die Muddy Fukka?”

Food Triggers: How to Put the Safety on Them

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This post is brought to you by the movie 2012, yep the one that came out about 4 /5 years ago. So I sat down to watch it and my first thought was I need some popcorn to go with this. Next thought was, wait, WTH? No you don’t, you are not even hungry! Sitting down to watch a movie is a trigger for me. That is what I did for many many years. Watching movies=popcorn. Popcorn=extra butter. Extra butter=calorie filled drink to wash all that butter salt and guilt down. So I immediately put that “safety” on that gun. I’m very blessed to be able to recognize this trigger before the damage was done. So you may be wondering what did I do to put the safety on. Well in this instance it was super easy. I grabbed a cup of detox water and simply changed the location for my movie watching. I usually curl up in a chair in my bedroom. This time I went downstairs to the family room. I was just as comfy but the need for popcorn was left upstairs. Amazing how something so simple can make such a huge difference. Many times its just the ritual that tends to take into unsafe territory. Change it up. If you still need a snack while watching the movie, veggie sticks are great. A little fresh fruit and cheese or nut butter.  These things work for me create new and healthy rituals.

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Sometimes, it may be a special date on the calendar that will trigger the need to eat. Maybe you had lunch/dinner with your mom, dad, friend, ex(whatever) or a birthday or an anniversary, and for one reason or another they are no longer with you. But the special date still remains, as well as the feelings and emotions that are tethered to the occasional.  Many times this can leave you with a void, a hollow empty feeling that longs to be filled. And many  of us turn to food. This time, try  something different,  write a letter to  that person. In this  letter, release the emotions you are feeling instead of stuffing them down with food and drink that you will most likely regret before it’s even digested. You don’t have to mail it to them unless you want to. The point is to just release instead of stuffing. Register for a race on that day if at all possible. Volunteer someplace you have always wanted to but never found the time. The idea is to create another ritual that is conducive to your health and fitness goals.

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Or perhaps, it’s the one we all are familiar with our frenemy that stalking bastard boredom. He’s always lurking in the shadows waiting to pounce, with a bag of mindless chips, a sabotaging sweet, girth growing bread or hell sometimes he declares, let the binge begin and brings everything but the kitchen sink. And that my friends is never good. Now you may ask what can you do about that? How can you put the safety on that trigger. First, have a plan. You know there will come a time when boredom will settle in. If you are home have a list of options, you can read, journal, spend time with your kids, go for a walk or jog, check social media and find inspirational stories, read them pick up some tips from someone who is where you want to be. Try a new hobby like painting, a musical instrument, crocheting anything you  have always wanted to try. And of course have healthy snacks on hand.

 

Stuck in traffic, have an audio book on hand, have healthy snacks and water on hand.

If you’re at work, again have healthy snacks and water on hand. Walk the stairs, instead of emailing someone in your office, walk down to their office and speak to them. Read a work related article. Tidy up your office or cubicle 🙂 Do some deep breathing and positive visualization.

 

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In summary, the keys to beating food triggers, are as follows, be aware that you have triggers, recognize them and have a plan as to how you will slap that safetly on them. It’s not a difficult process at all, once you recognize they exist.

 

Thanks for stopping by! GRGT

 

Back, at it

Ya girl is tired today. I got that thang put on me by my Beast (aka trainer) today. I think he tried to incapacitated me for the weekend. But chile I regenerate like Wolverine. (Looks at bruised arms from 2 weeks ago and giggles)
Well today was back day. And he beat that back like I was a runaway. Father forgive him even-though he knew EXACTLY what he was doing!(Rolls eyes) But I’m turning the other cheek, which I’m sure he will take care of next week. I mean honestly, it’s best to live in truth (shrugs and giggles) It was a great workout.
I love working out with my trainer. And I love seeing the changes in my body. As well as gaining the strength I need to do things I would have never thought  I could do when I started this journey. I’ve done several 5k’s, a 15K, several obstacle races, climbed over 15′ walls, swung like Tarzan over freezing water, carried a 75lb bucket of rocks for and ungodly length of time, jumped over blazing fire, swam through swamps, and I have the ability strength and endurance to do ANYTHING I choose. How awesome is THAT.

Embracing my journey and all that it holds. Endless possibilities. #GRGT

 

Back Work

 

I AM A SPARTAN AROO

“Spartans ready your breakfast and eat hearty, for tonight we dine in hell!”

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My Spartan race experience was so freaking amazing. There is so much to tell but there is no way I could tell you everything, this would become a novel. So I’ll give you the detailed highlights.

I was initially supposed to race with some ladies but that didn’t work out so I put on my Greek panties and went solo. I wasn’t even really nervous because I knew things would work out perfectly for me. And guess what? They did. I had not been there 5 minutes and met Howard, aka Mr. Kinky, who would become one of my race buddies. We hit it off from hello. Within 10 mins we had nicknames for each other. And within 12 minutes “Our” girlfriend had joined us and it was on and popping from there. They were team Chaos and are also members of Georgia Obstacle Racers and Mud Runners, or GORMR. They were  largest group represented there. They were the coolest of cool.

Okay so get this, I had to jump/climb/crawl over a 6-7′ wall just to get to the start line.  I’m walking around that area wondering how the hell do I get in? When the volunteer says you have to go over. (Humm maybe I was wondering out loud, lol) I asked, are you serious? She said yep! So that’s when I got my first, bruise, LMAO. So we got the Spartan speech which ended with “Look at the Spartan to your left. Now look at the Spartan to your right you will draw strength from them and they from you. They will not let you fail!  Truer words have never been spoken. And a chant, Who are you? Answer, I AM A SPARTAN!! With that we were off. .01 mile in, the first obstacle, a mud moat…white sneakers became Georgia clay red. Then there were hurdles 6′, 8′ and 9′ maybe. We did them as a team. 2 out of 25+ DONE 🙂

The one that I’ll never forget, would be that damn red bucket that they made me fill with rocks and carry it 1/4 mile up hill! The bastard  Persians, I know Xerxes, was behind that. (rolling my eyes at him) I know that bucket had to weigh at least 75lbs. I did fine for the first 1-2 minutes but then…I was done. I started pulling, dragging, and praying. It was then my Spartan guardian angel showed up. I put my bucket down and he picked it gave my some carrying techniques and cheered me on. I had never seen this man before. I walked about another 50 yards and my back started hurting. I had to put the bucket down, again. And there was Zack ( I later learned his name) He gave me some sort of back rub and chile, I almost wanted to kiss him. At first I was like whoa, whatcha doing back there? Then I was like, whoa, yeah that’s it! LMAO. He said, “See, I got ya.” He picked my bucket up again gave me more guidance and I was off again. When I finally made to the dump spot, they were asking us to dump on a higher end, which meant I was going to have to lift that heavy ass bucket over my head and over the ledge into the dump area. I’m thinking damn really? No way. And there was my Spartan, he dumped my bucket for me and gave me the biggest hug and whispered words of encouragement to me and sent me on my way.  That was an awful challenge yet a beautiful challenge.
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The mud pits, the MUD PITS the ROLING MUD PITS.  (Is that what Adel meant when she sang Rolling in the Deep?) The muddy clay was slippery, and the water was freezing. My feet sank to shin deep and I had to battle the slopes for my sneakers. And battle the cold water for my breath. So when I slid into the first pit, and the cold water hit my body I almost went into shock. SN: If you have ever seen the Movie Sugar Hill with Wesley Snipes,  the last hit his father took that killed him he began to say whoo, whoo, whoo. Yeah that’s how I was doing it. If not, how about jumping into a cold pool, filled with ice. There were four pits back to back. Each a little deeper that the preceding one and colder, if that’s possible. I went from waist deep to nipple deep by the time I exited the 4 pit. Did I mention the drop off in pit 3? Yeah there was a drop-off. Oh to be 5’3″, smh. Dory from Finding Nemo came to mind, “Just keep walking, just keep walking.”

Then there was a cargo net hanging from a cliff that was as high as the Statue of Liberty. You had to use a rope that was dangling from the cargo net to get to the cargo net. But it wasn’t bad. It was actually one of the easier challenges. I enjoyed that one. I’m sure I looked like Spiderwoman on that one.

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“No retreat, no surrender, that is Spartan law.”  

The Tarzan swing was the hardest thing for me to do. We had to grab a rope and swing over a, say it with me now, a mud moat! I must have stood there 10 minutes trying to get the nerve to do it. Lawd have mercy, I was all Jane, honey waiting for Tarzan to show up so I could hitch a ride on his back. Hell even Cheetah would have sufficed. Of course the people around me were giving me tips and cheering me on. My race buddy was standing next to me trying to get up the nerve as well. She eventually took the burpee penalty. But I knew I had to do this. That was my goal complete every challenge. And it Spartan law. So I closed my eyes, held on tight and swung….right into the mud moat, LOL. But, I tried. Maybe had I kept my eyes open I could have made it to the other side without yet another cold mud bath. SN: Does anyone know if Georgia red clay is good for your hair or skin? I’m sure there is some around here somewhere.

I carried sandbags up ungodly, unforgiving small mountains, I hoisted 80lb sandbags 2 stories in the air. It was about this time someone with a megaphone began to yell out my name. “Denna? Denna is that you? ” I initially thought I was hearing things but then the person started walking towards me without outstretched arms. And she said I was looking for you. I’m so glad I saw you.” Total shock on my part. Turns out she was a friend of a friend who I had met a few months ago. Never expected that. You know who is watching or where.   I carried a 60lb Atlas ball 20 yards did 5 burpees and took it back 20 yards. I completed a memory challenge, you had to read the directions that were upside down. You had to read 1 word and 7 numbers and commit them to memory and provide it when asked later in the race (which was about 10 obstacles and 1 hour later) I still remember it MIKE 384 7893. AROO!

I climbed an inverted wall that was about 10 feet high and had to belly slide down the other side. I made a clean spot on the plywood (O_O). I traversed 3 walls with someone’s hand on my ass for 2 walls. No worries, I returned the favor and groped her ass for 2.5 walls. Matter of fact, I touched a LOT of foreign ass on Saturday, LOL. And there were more than a few hands on mine.  I climbed a 10, 12, 15 foot wall with help of my race buddy Howard. God bless Howard, I stepped on that mans quads, cupped hands, and shoulder and possibly his ear,  just to name a few of the parts. Lord if it were not for him, I know I’d still have 5 more obstacles to go, right now lol.

I crossed monkey bars, all but riding Laura’s shoulders. There were cargo nets several stories high. I threw a spear, after all I am a SPARTAN. I climbed a rope that was suspended about 2 stories high, well I got to the attic, of the first story, lol. My arms were done and the I was muddy and the rope was wet and muddy. Did I mention I had to go chest deep in yet another, muddy ice bath to get to the rope? Yep they were suspended in the middle of a huge mud pit. That had to be the Persians again.

I low crawled about 100+ yards through puddles that threatened to drown me, mud so thick I was losing my pants all this, under varying levels of barbed wire suspended mere inches above me, only to reach  a mountain of mud that was nearly impossible to climb. There was nothing to grip, nothing to get your footing on. And once at the top I realized that oh, now I have to slide into this mud hole that is abdomen deep on this tall lady, so that means it’s drowning level for me. There was a huge board dividing it lengthwise. It rises about 7 -8 feet out of the water and disappears below the surface of the water. They tell me I have to swim under. Wait, say what now? How wide is this thing, how far does it extend into the water? Damn! They say it’s 4 inches wide and only about 6 inches into the water. I give them the you better not be shitting me look and check. They seem to be correct. I look at my race buddy and say, I’m just going to do it. She said, “Really?” Yep, I’m just going to do it and get it over with. I’ve come to far to be stopped by a bit of muddy water. Hell I am muddy water at this point. And with that I disappeared under the water. I resurfaced to cheers and applause. Now, I’m literally soaked from head to toe and covered in mud from head to toe. From there, there was another football field of low crawling under barbed wire. Oh yeah, then onto the Slip Wall. That was a bitch! The wall was at an angle wet, covered with mud and they want you to go up and over.  Fortunately I made it over the first time, no back sliding (or belly sliding). I think my toes came out of the bottom of my sneakers and just dug in and held on. What else could have happened? Everyone wasn’t so lucky.

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There were several other obstacle to complete before completing the challenge. I honestly can’t remember them. I do remember the final mud moat that was waist deep, I waded through that and then I could feel the warmth of the fire! I had done it! I had complete every single challenge they threw at me, all that was left was to jump the fire. I did it. And I did to applause cheers and whistles. What an awesome feeling. And when they placed my medal around my neck I felt like a real Spartan, Leonidas would have been proud, AROO!!

I can’t wait to add my super medal, to go along with my sprint and finally complete the set with the beast medal. Super proud of myself for completing this race.

The video shows what I saw the following day as I volunteered, as well as few stills of my muddy self.  I was thinking to myself, wow you did that! Hey you did that as well. As I watched many many people do the challenges I could just feel the pride swell within me. I was just so proud of myself.

 

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The Article

Wednesday February 25, 2015, was THE BEST DAY! I was the featured success story in the Atlanta Journal Constitution. Boom Shaka Laka! You talk about psyched, amped, turnt up, LOL you name it. If it means excited I was/am.

 

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This entire process has been somewhat surreal but to actually make a well-known publication for weight loss, I’ve come a looong way baby! I’m so grateful for the drive and determination that God has blessed me with. As well as  for everyone who has supported during my journey. This would have been much more difficult without my support system. And it would not have been half as fun.

Despite how far I’ve come, my journey is far from over, I still have a bout 20-25 more pounds I’d like to lose. But honey boo boo chile, I’m much closer to the maintenance portion of this journey than the beginning.

 

So me being me, I was showing the article to random strangers as I was buying newspapers. I would whip open the paper and say, “Hey, look that’s me!” LOL. Yes, I did that. It was surprisingly well received 🙂 I received tons of congrats, and way to go’s. Some people even went to get their own copies of the paper so they could actually read the article. Umm, but there weren’t any left, someone had bought them all, lol.

Start and don’t quit, that’s the key. And going my March weight loss camp to kick-start your own journey. I want everyone to Get Right and Get Tight 🙂

 

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Flourless Protein Pancakes

These pancakes are delish. Great for breakfast or a snack. They are one of my favorites. Super quick , easy and tasty! Everything you need, complex carb and good protein. I sometimes add berries and/or greek yogurt to mine. But plain is just as delish. Today I only added 6oz of almond milk on the side. Makes 1 serving!

 

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