Saturday, April 30, 2011

Run from the heart.

I've just finished watching The Spirit Of The Marathon. I can't describe how I felt. It was like every single runner was carrying a piece of me with them. I cried the whole half ending of the movie. The tears would just come out one after the other, I couldn't help it. Just seeing those runners training so hard, giving their very best and crossing that line is just SO touching, so motivating, so inspiring... I can't get enough. Running is growing on me more than anything has ever had. I've never wanted anything more in my life than to run. I want to run more than I want to be a doctor. That's how strong it is. I can't help it. My days of a casual runner are behind me now. I run. I train. I see improvements. I see my body doing things I've never even considered possible. I would see how fast people were running at parks and only assume that kind of thing wasn't for me. That there was no way I could ever do that. Don't get me wrong, I still have a LONG way down the road. But I've crossed the starting line - and that means everything. Maybe I'll have to take a little walk in between. Maybe I'll get unmotivated. Maybe the finish line would be so far ahead that I will think I can't make it. I'll do my best to be strong. To not see so far ahead. To just keep going, one front in front of the other. That's all that matters right now to me. Running is teaching me to be patient. To trust the hard work and effort I've been putting into my training. It is making me believe in myself. It is allowing me to be powerful in all other aspects of my life - family, friends, school. Suddenly, you just want to try harder. Try harder to be a better daughter, a better friend, a better student, a better runner. Because I'm learning that persistence pays off. With everything. :)

I'm pretty sure my training is even interfering with my approach with the bitch anatomy... By the time I graduate, can you imagine how much improvement I will have accomplished? (we're talking around 6 years more down the road...). I'm gonna be a sports medicine doctor (you didn't know that, right? It's not like I've talked about it 394839 times here). And I'm gonna be a little bit of every athlete who enters my office. I'm gonna be able to share their feelings, their worries, because I have been there, I know how it feels, I know exactly what they've been through. Running is a crucial part of my career. Just remember that nothing you do is a waste. Everything has a purpose, everything can be used to make you wiser, stronger, or as a motivation for others. By this time last year, I was totally into a guy who didn't give a shit about me, I wasn't consistent with my workout, I was struggling with eating disorders, I was partying heavy, didn't give a shit about school, you name it. Now, one year after, I'm single, in total peace with my emotional feelings, studying my ass off to become a better doctor, to be able to help every single athlete out there, I'm a runner, I don't count calories, I don't try to purge if I eat too much, I don't binge on foods because I restrict them too much. Everything in moderation. When I compare what I was with what I'm becoming, I can't help it but smile and give myself a big hug. I'm improving, I'm learning, I'm becoming a person I've always wanted to be. And that is priceless. 

Sorry, no sarcasm today. I'm too mushy. I haven't had my period for almost 3 months, be jealous blame it on that. 

Have you ever struggled with anything eating-related?
Last year I was struggling with anorexia, then binge eating. Worst time of my life. 

What is your biggest goal right now?
To run the Buenos Aires marathon by the end of the year. Is that even a possibility?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Speed and self-analyzing.

When I'm running, I think I should be studying. I'm studying and all I can think about is running. Isn't it sad? I hate when I'm not able to enjoy whatever I'm doing WHEN I'm doing it. It's just a waste of time because then once it's  all over, you'll realize that you had never truly enjoyed anything you have done at all because you were always thinking ahead of you. We do this all the time! We go to school thinking about college; then we go to college thinking about graduation and getting a job; then we finally get a job and we can't stand it and we only think about getting it over with or retire. That's just not right. If you're unhappy with your decisions, if you hate school, if you hate your job, well, then CHANGE IT. Most people didn't understand why I gave up Journalism school when I was 1 year away from finishing. Well, I was 100% sure that I didn't want that for my life. So what would I do with the diploma? Put on my wall to show people "hey look, I graduate at something I don't actually care about". And, if I had continued with it, the chances that I would get carried away by jog offers or influence from other classmates would be much bigger. Then I would be now sitting on a desk, whining and thinking "if I only had gave up when I had the chance". Thank God I did. And I couldn't have decided for anything differently. I don't say Med school is easy because it isn't. On the top of that, trying to keep up with a healthy life style plus running is definitely a challenge. You always have lots to study and it's pretty tempting to let it get on your way of doing things you love and that help you keep your sanity. I just have to remember how much running cleans up my head so I can study fresh-minded afterward. Yes, I have less time to study than the other students. But I'm up with much more energy then most of them and, the fewer hours when I'm indeed studying, I'm much more focused and learn things much easily then if I had potato-couched the whole day sitting on my ass and eating crap. Running has become a part of me now. I love it and I should be able to enjoy it while I'm running. I don't wanna be running thinking about studying or vice-versa. I wanna be able to give my 100% to everything I'm doing, so I have better chances to have fewer regrets later on in life. And if, at any given point, I realize that's not really what I want for me, well, I will have no regrets for doing it because I gave my all and best. :)

I have  6K coming up in a few weeks. The running group convinced me. It's my first race ever, but I'm glad I'm starting off with a 6K instead of a 10K. I know it's nothing for you marathoners out there, but it means a lot to me. It means I'm starting. It means I'm putting myself out there for good or bad. It means I'm doing something for myself and that, after that, I'll be stronger even if it's in a small way. And I'll also have running pictures, running shirts and running people to hang out with. Well, maybe that's the main reason I'm doing this d: C'mon, don't judge, I really wanna a running shirt :)

So Fall is finally here. Well, not really, it's really being a chicken this year. I don't complain. Like at all. I'm not a big fan of winter after all. But the leaves as falling...

Sorry I don't know how to pose for pictures at all. 

Church gals d: 

That was taken by Su after church... so you know what that means... 

Sunday sushi's ritual. Su ditched me and went home. Something about having to save money and cooking I didn't quite get. 

Today I had the class I fear the most... anatomy. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the subject. But the class has always taken the best out of me. I used to start crying several times in the middle of the class (I would always blame it on the formol lol). By the end of it, I was so mentally devastated that the only thing I could think of what "why am I in this career again?" Anatomy is tough. Specially for me, who has always like humanities classes better since I can understand myself as a human being. I read Socrates when I was 13. Sophie's World 3 times when I was 14. Nietzsche and Freud joined me for my 15th birthday. I had a really messed up teenagerhood (is this even a word?), mostly because I was aware of most things that were happening around me and I couldn't just be ignorant about it. Ok, back to the point. Anatomy has been difficult to me because I'm not used to decorate things. I'm used to read and understand. Simple as that. So I've been spending several hours a day dedicating exclusively to anatomy and, you know what?, it's been worth it. At first, I wasn't seen improvement. I started thinking I just suck at it, something genetic (don't you also love to blame it on the genes when you can't justify it?). But, after today, I'm seeing things differently. I was really into the class all the time, I answered, I recognized parts, I felt like I knew every single word the teacher said. And I had one of those moments when you smile and feel proud of yourself. Don't you love those? I've been having them quite a lot lately. 

Yeah, those are dead people. Don't freak out, they don't look nearly as exciting as they are in The Sixth Sense. 

So, let's talk running. Yesterday, I went to meet with the group again. I got there a little late because my subway got stuck somewhere, somehow, I wasn't really paying attention. So I met them half way and started running out of nowhere to warm up. About 3.2K. Then we did a little of abs, lunges, squads, push-ups (as if I don't do those enough at the gym). So we were at a park called ROSEDAL, in the middle of the Palermo's gardens. Really famous spot in Buenos Aires. The group made marks around the park every 100m. A whole turn has 1.600m, starting from mark 0m. I asked the teacher "so what are we doing today?", he said "400m speed". 400m?, I thought in my naivety, that's not that bad, and walked away happy we were doing some shorter sets of sprints. I didn't walk away quick enough to hear we were doing 12 (yeah, you read it right) 12 sets of 400m. HA. I seriously laughed. First thought: there's no way in god's creation I'm able to do 12 sets. With that in mind, I joined a group of 4 and we started. I kept telling myself I was gonna do only one whole turn (the whole 12 sets resulted in 3 whole turns at the park). Pace? 7.42. By the end of the first whole turn, I was exhausted. It hurt like hell. We had 1min rest between every set. I couldn't breath, I was thirsty, I thought I wasn't gonna make it. Then the guys said "let's go" and I automatically followed them. I kept going. It grew on me. I was getting faster. I passed one of the dudes from my group (notice that I'm the slowest one so that gave me a huge adrenaline fix). By the end of the second whole turn, quitting was already not an option. I was strong. I could see myself running strong, I was faster, I felt like nothing could stop me. I finished the third whole turn. The teacher came to talk to me, really worried, asking if I was ok, saying that I shouldn't have tried to keep up with the boys, that I shouldn't have done all the 12 sets. I was smiling big time. I've never felt such an amazing sense of accomplishment in my life. I ran the fastest I've ever had. I didn't quit. I enjoyed it. Hey, you know what? I'm a runner. :) 

Life's good, folks. Never forget that. "It's not the load that breaks you down. It's the way you carry it."  [ Lena Horne ].

How are you carrying your load? 

What has made you proud of yourself lately?
I definitely need to say the running group. It has made me realize how much stronger I can become if I push it a little further every time.

Do you ever compare yourself with others? 
Used to do it all the time. I would be my worst critic. I would look at how others looked better than me, were prettier, thinner, nicer... every quality I used to see in others were an excuse to put myself down for not having them as strong as everyone else. Little by little, I've been learning to only compare what I am with what I was. To see my own accomplishments. To feel proud for myself. To see my improvements, recognize them, reward myself for them. To see other's qualities with inspiration, not with jealousy. We all have something good inside to offer.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Keep it under the carpet.

There's lots of advantages when you're living away from home. Most of them consist of preserving the view of a popular, hygienic and responsible person your family has of you.

While normal people are partying their Saturday nights out like there's no tomorrow and your family is thinking you're probably out on a hot date, that's what you're actually doing:

Did I mention I love red wine and blue cheese? You got the latest Harry Potter movie on and I'm sold!

Between the lame poses you do in front of the mirror while checking out your hot body, you can also spare your family from seeing stuff like this:

Spoons are so overrated. 

You can also keep them from knowing that you and your roommate eat pizza with beer and wine at 11pm while watching He's Just Not That Into You for the 10th time and cursing all the XY species. 

You better believe that was only half of the pizza.

You know that small detail that your fav sushi place is actually strategically halfway from the church you suddenly decided to go to? So keep that to yourself as well. 

I swear that the sushi was delicious... I don't know why we have the moron faces on.

And they also don't need to know you're falling behind your classmates because you're workout maniac and, on the top of that, has just joined a running group (shhh more on that later).

I really need some running gear so I can stop using old clothes to workout. 

AND, the biggest advantage of all, you can spare them the fact that you always need more money because you spend all your month's worth of cash buying expensive gigantic amounts of food so you can keep up with all the insanely activity you put your muscles through. 

And I wonder why I never have money to do stuff like waxing. 

Okay so big news. Today I had the first day with the running group. It was a small group because it's a holiday today and well you know. But I loved every single moment of it! Well, ok not every single moment, some random minutes I really wanted to kick their ass hard, but I guess it was totally worth it in the end. I got there, we talked, they said "we're doing an easy jog for about 1h, you're in?" The hell you bet I'm in. It turned out their jog is a 9:20 pace and that's like my sprint pace (ok not really but you got the point). So within 30min I was out of breath and I think I've cursed every single past generation of the whole group, but you know what? If it wasn't for them I wouldn't have make an almost 11K in 1:04h! Tomorrow it's gonna be a little easier they said (what could it be, 30min of sprints uphill? :S) so I'm confident. For the very first time, I'm trusting my own running skills, I'm trusting that I can improve, that I can get better, stronger, faster. Wait and watch me.  

Med school is good by the way, in case you're wondering. It's killing me, but oh well I guess that should have been obvious for me since the beginning. I was very unmotivated to study yesterday, so I decided to watch the new House ep instead... and it just threw this right at my face:

- Sailing is amazing, but it doesn't mean I love every second on the boat... Doing what you love means dealing with things you don't.

[ House ]

Right? :) 
Gotta go, good people. Running group tomorrow way too early for me at 9am :) 

What do you do now that you live alone (or when you're away from home) that you're family is better off not knowing? 

Random question... what moment of the day are you guys hungrier?
That would be around 5ish pm. I don't know what the hell happens, the hunger spirit possesses me and I can't stop eating 'till around 7ish pm. Like I.can't.stop. I don't know why, but you know when sometimes you wonder if you're normal? That's def one of those times for me. 

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Partying animal 'till 1am, wow.

HOLIDAY! Remember it? No school, no homework, parties, friends and all that? That's not my case. I don't have classes for the next week and the only thing I can think of is "Thank God, now I have more time to study" (?). I swear, all doctors deserve their money big time. It's just insanely out of control what they put us through.

Just so you don't think I'm a total loser, last night's dinner looked like this:

Who could ever want anything other than blue cheese, bread and wine?

I ended up partying hard big time with my roommate until 1am. She was having beer and 2 glasses of beer later and one (yeah you read it right) one whole glass of wine we were so tired that we went to bed. On a friday night of a holiday. Why am I still single, you ask?

Last Sunday, I went to church. Figured I needed some me time with my girlfriend and it was awesome. We found out they had another building which is the central a little bit further but much bigger. So we're hitting it tomorrow morning... can't wait. It might be the most exciting thing that has happened to me this week. I know, lame right? If you want my address to send me chocolates, I'm accepting.

Don't matter the fact that I need a haircut really bad.

And we treated ourselves with THIS:

A pizza that costs 4 bucks HAS to be great in every possible way, right? :) 

So anatomy classes are great, except that my group is SO lame. I can't believe I'm stuck with them 'till the end of the year. If you're watching the last House's season, you might be familiar with the new assistant who's actually a med student... yeah, the really annoying i-know-it-all one. Multiply her by 10 and voila, welcome to my nightmare. When we're dissecting the cadavers, they're just all over it all the time, it annoys me out of my mind. Thank God for the internet.

I was actually able to find a page that has dissections separated by members. So, SO useful. And I thought I would be disgusted by dead people, but nope. The alive ones are still much worse. 

My training are SO great. I go to school with already all my gym stuff on my backpack, then I live school and the gym is right there, half a block away. Can't get any better than that folks. And I got on track with my yoga class and it's been a huge helper. Yesterday I did lower body training followed by a yoga class... so you can imagine how my ass is feeling, as usual. I wonder if it has anything to do with 220lbs I put on the leg press upward machine? d:

Today is upper body and Sunday I'm aiming for a long run before church. Let's see how that goes. I'm happy that I was able to run almost 11K on a treadmill this week, which is huge for me (I mean, running on a treadmill just sucks big time)... it could or not could have something to do with the huge gigantic cup of coffee I had right before it. I'm not a big fan of using anything to enhance performance, because I feel like I'm cheating on myself somehow... but I have to tell you, coffees have been great for me this week, specially for working out and studying... I still haven't bought any to have at home because I'm scared I'll be addicted all over again, but I'm this close. 

You guys take anything before working out that gives you that extra energy? (come one guys, share your secrets with me, I have no friends and I take in all the advice you guys give me d: ).
I've never taken anything at all except for coffee this week. Kinda hooked. 

How does your typical day looks like?
Well, wake up at 7am, breakfast, school 'till 12:30pm. Gym, home, lunch, books 'till I can handle it. Usually by 12pm I give up and go to bed. Party animal, right?

Any big plans for the weekend?
That would be church lol. 

Saturday, April 09, 2011

The sun works less than us, medical students.

Great things that med school has been teaching me:

1) Multi-task.

That means pooping and reading Mental Health at the same time. That means showering and watching the last episode of your favorite show at the same time. That means sleeping and listening to your last class on your ipod at the same time. That means working out and naming all the muscles you're feeling at the same time.

2) The expression of your artistic (?) side.

If you're a bad drawer (aka ME)... well, you're screwed. 

3) Lie to myself about others.

Every kid on med school that knows more than you do either are all virgins or have no social life. Or both. 

4) Oxygen who?

You really don't need it 24/7 as much as you need coffee. Just saying. 

5) The true meaning of the word "weekend".

Once upon a time, there used to be 2 days when you could throw everything in the air and lazy around, see people, have a couple (?) drinks, go out, do your nails, shave... Now there are 2 days where you thank God you have no class so you can get up earlier than your usual class time and starting eating up the books. 

6) A deep remorse for Evolution.

If we were only still unicellular creatures on the water... 

7) Priorities are twisted.

You don't dream about buying the coolest new dress you've seen at the mall. First of all, your dreams are all anatomy-related. All. Single. One. Of. Them. Second of all, where are you gonna where it? Third of all... mmm mall? 

8) Hygiene is overrated.

So every time you see a girl at school with nails and hair done, you just repeat to yourself (lots and lots and lots of times 'till you believe it) that, while she was at the saloon getting pretty, you were at home becoming a better doctor. 

9) Working out becomes your idea of hanging out.

The only people you get to see besides your classmates.

10) Your ass is the most important muscle of your body.

No comments on this one because I still can't feel mine after 11 hours sitting on it.

Now, time for more shoulder joint. Joy. 

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Hermiting, whatever this means.

It's 9:36pm. I was all dressed up to go to the gym, but every single cell of my brain begged me not to. I'm physically awake, but mentally I'm dead. Class in the morning followed by 7 hours straight eating Anatomy books. I mean, it. Books as in not only more than one, but a whole lot more. Since apparently no one can make a real damn good book, we have to study with 4, 5 different books to get the most of all of them. I thought of doing a little break and going to the gym, but I just couldn't bring myself to stop it in the middle, so I just kept going. At some point, I'm pretty sure I felt asleep on the table for like 10min, and I'm not sure that's so normal. New plan: having gym clothes on my school bag. My gym is actually half a block away from school on my way back home. So it's just makes more sense to leave school and just go. Some other days, I'll have to go later on because I wanna catch some classes (spinning, yoga), but it's just much easier if you have a time that you need to be there :) Of course that all my gym stuff will have to compete for space with stuff like this:

God forbid I go hungry in the middle of a class. I mean, who carries a bag of bread on their backpacks anyway?

Being younger, I remember my aunt cooking something like an eggplant parmigiana but with soy meat on the top of it. I didn't have soy meat at home, but I did have some tofu screaming to be used. So I tried to crumble it and it actually ended up working quite well.

Eggplant on the bottom with olive oil, then unsalted cheese and a mix of crumbled tofu with ricotta cheese, tomato sauce and cumin on the top. And yes, I ate half of it alone. Hey, brains use up calories too.

Today, I got home from school at about 1ish pm and I was starving so I made the easiest thing I could find on the fridge and it actually turned out healthier than I even planned.

Steamed broccoli and carrots, tomatoes, the legume power mix and oysters. Hey rainbow. 

Sorry for boring ya all with this lame post, but I swear I can't think clear in my head. I see cells, tissues, anatomic parts, muscles, bones all around me. Someone looks at me, I see their hole skull. 

Oh, by the way, great news. I'm joining a running group, probably starting this weekend. Can't wait. Finally, I'm gonna have someone to talk to about running (actually finally I'm gonna have someone to talk at all, I'm telling you, hermit). Joining a group keeps you motivate. It bonds you with people who share the same passion as you and it makes it harder for you to skip your runs, 'cause ditching yourself is one thing, but ditching others is humiliating and it makes you a loser. Seriously. By you I mean, me. 

What was your favorite dish back when you were a kid?
Milk's cream cookie and anything chinese food related.

Tell me the most amazing thing that has happened to you recently! I'd love to know! 
That would be me joining the running group! I'm so excited! :) 

Sunday, April 03, 2011

First Global Warming... and now this.

My life sometimes is so boring that I have to actually skip days of posting just so I don't bore cyber people out of their minds... but yesterday something really scary happened. I decided to go for a run at around 10pm with my dog... he's very small, but since it was Saturday night, the streets were crowed so no problem with that. I was around 3 blocks away from home and I had probably run a little bit over 8K, I crossed the street and there was this girl with a huge dog. Huge! And she was holding a leash, so I thought she had him like leashed. As Tino (my petit dog) approached to say hi to his fellow specie, the other huge gigantic dog, out of NOWHERE, attacked him. I mean, he bit Tino on the neck, and started shaking him one side to another, just like they do when they want to destroy a pillow... I had Tino on the leash, but I started pushing and screaming and the dog wouldn't let go!
And as it turned out, the other girl didn't have him on the leash (she did have a leash on her hands, it might be a new trend I'm not aware of, who knows, I'm a hermit). I started crying and screaming and I think the scene went on forever and I knew there was no way Tino would survive... until a guy came out of nowhere, stepped in the middle and took the other dog away... I was still crying out of my mind, I just couldn't stop, Tino was shaking and crying silently and he looked to scared, I could see pain all through his eyes... the guy took him and started analyzing him, looking for the teeth bites... after about 5min he found them and told me that I should medicate him with a syringe and put oxygenated water right into the bites. He also said the bites were subcutaneous, so no further damage was caused. It turned out he was a vet (what are the odds that you're running at almost 11pm on a Saturday night, your little dog gets attacked by this huge monster dog and there's coincidentally a vet walking right at the same moment?). 

So I took him on my arms and walked the rest of the way back home... I was still crying and by the time we got here, he crawled under my bed and wouldn't leave... I tried talking to him, but he was just too scared... This morning, I woke up and he looks a little better, but he's still kinda down... wish him luck, guys <3

Saturday it was another holiday here (yeah, I know uh) and you know what that means... no gym! And I just found out about that later on when I actually getting ready to go... so I couldn't go, which crushed my little soul... so instead, I went for that miserable run... ):  On Friday, I had the lamest spinning class ever. The teacher so not wanted to be there on a Friday night... she would stop pedaling or not put any resistance at all. LAME. The bad thing about being a spinning instructor... no class is your class, right? heh  C'mon guys, let me brag about it a bit, I deserve it, I had a tough week, k?

Yesterday, I also cooked those babies:

Brown rice, brown, white and black beans, lentils and flaxseeds. This, mates, is more protein and fiber together than you'll ever get in any meal. 

Ok so as I was talking to my roommate, I just remembered the funniest story ever... my dad used to have this motorcycle and he used to pick me and my sister up at school when we were younger. My sister would go on the front and I on the back (ok guys don't blame him, he was a cop back then and we were broke). I also thought it was too lame to hold on to my dad's back, so I would just hold the back part of the motorcycle. He used to come and park backwards, so it was easier for us to get on. One day, he put my sister on the front and I sat on the back. One of my girl friends then called me and I said "be right back" and I got off to talk to her (so remember that I  used to weight probably 60lbs when I was a kid, no kidding, people thought my parents were starving me to death). With that said, you can imagine what happened. My dad didn't hear me saying that I was getting off the bike and he also didn't feel as I got off and walked back to the school. So he just went home. Guys, you don't understand, he went all the way home (that would be about 25min) without realizing I wasn't on the back seat. When they finally got there, he got off and he was like "holy shit, where's Lyvia?" He thought I had fallen off the bike, so he went all the way back, really desperate, looking for me on the streets or crushed under some car. For his surprise, when he got to the school, there was I, sitting on the sidewalk, with my backpack on my back and the helmet still on, crying out of my mind that my dad went home and left me behind. You guys really believe that any girl can be normal after such thing? I'm pretty sure you just had and insight moment... "oh so that's why she's like this.... oh honey". I don't blame ya, really.

My dad and I a couple years before "the happening" that probably traumatized me for life. 

How is your weekend so far?
Is it weekend? I mean, really, weekend and weekdays have no difference for me anymore. It's all about books and more books. I actually had one Embryology class and I might have used 25 or 30 pages of my notebook. Talking about the miracle of life... try learning it.

Oh by the way, as I was trying to look up some videos so I could have a visual memory of what I was studying, I came across this:

This brought so much joy to a Saturday night post-dog attack filled with books. 

Do you have any really funny (and dramatic) story from your childhood? I'd love to know it! C'mon guys, don't leave me alone on this one. 

Spread it!