Thursday, May 21, 2020

Pen-Ultimate Ponderings ... Preparing to Leave Zoom Spaces ... Thankful

Return, return, return, return… Part of a lyric arose in my mind/heart as I finished up the penultimate Zoom CrossFit ‘class’ today. The energy is palpable in the group to return to the gym, even as we have stayed with whatever the movements of the day are. Perhaps it’s just to get away from the dumbbells we’ve had to rely on so fully, for at-home workouts that everyone could have equipment for? But I caught myself taking a picture of my newer Zoom space, ‘my side’ of the now-cleaned garage, and soon, my previous ‘in-door’ Zoom space where CrossFit has continued to be a fitness practice and community for me, global pandemic be damned.


I have some anxieties about returning to the gym, of course, given how differently we will all need to interact with one another—social distancing, cleaning equipment before and after, remaining in our taped-boxes instead of hanging out on the couch for coffee with Matt before Friday morning workouts. (Yep, an 8 o’clocker luxury and smile). And yet the anxieties are only slight for me, given the work coaches do and the fierce attention to health and safety that is being demonstrated, has been demonstrated, for weeks now. I am eager to see again some CF peeps who just could not stomach the Zoom platform, which I totally respect and ‘get’ at some level, even as I missed bantering with them, hearing their own lives of the moment. I’m readying for the return and aware that it will feel different and similar, all at once.

I’m also into Day Five of my “one-week-100%-on-DH-Plan” intention, which has been re-grounding and steadying of my internal and external dynamics this week. A lot of change is happening in my work life, as it is with so many of us. The last 3-4 weeks saw a stress-return, of sorts, though not utter abandonment of The Wagon. I could feel the shift in my own mental states, challenges, and the reliance on more ‘external’ indulgences that ultimately leave me feeling poorer and poorer inside. Yet I would choose them anyway. One of the bright conscious moments was choosing to enter into a pizza night with my husband, as we’d never tried Old Scratch Pizza before. YUM-MMMY, just sayin. Worth every carb digested. And… And...beginning the return to 100% Plan intentions re-grounded and lightened me inside again this week. So strange, this subtle shift of intention—shared on the DH page to invite others in, if they wanted, which no one responded to explicitly. But the shared intention, on a closed FB page, has kept my resolve more than being on the solitary path of intention for myself. 

So...penultimate pandemic observations? What have been the gifts of this time, even as I’m ready for a shift into “Quarantine-Light,” better known as “workout at the gym but stay at home otherwise, as much as possible”? 

I know I am fitter than I was 8 weeks ago, even with my fluctuations and stress-responses with cocktail hours with B. I have begun to enjoy a new pair of Hokas running shoes, recommended by a CF peep, and discovered the running track is open close to my home. A level running surface, which is nice to enjoy alongside the huge hill I get to run down, and back up, everytime I run otherwise. I have relaxed inside with my capacity and ease to listen to my body while pushing into longer workouts, more cardio, higher-rep weight workouts. I have missed the rig, which offers more stability for kip-pull-ups, though I have warmed up my lats and grip with the Power Tower I got for myself several years ago. I could have done more with pull-up projects, but I did not want to, apparently! 

I continued to weave in and out with CF peeps’ intentions and invitations, regardless of isolation—30-day push-up challenge (which I did for 16 days, but bagged for the rest), and now the 30-day sit-up challenge, which is going GREAT….at Day FOUR. I have enjoyed the daily text-exchanges with the coach ‘assigned’ to me for the duration. It’s been nice to get to know her and banter, like we do. 


And honestly, it’s been incredibly convenient to prepare for class 10 minutes before, and be home upon conclusion of class, not needing to worry about the drive there and back. A huge learning for me has been how thoroughly I lived in my car in my pre-pandemic life. It was my sanctuary, in some ways, my solitary hermit-chair where I could tend to my own experiences of things. The 20 minute drive for me to the gym, usually more in school-and-work traffic nearby, was nothing to me, really. Now, it feels like a distance... [I suppose this route won’t be traffic-y in this next season, come to think of it.] I should be able to leave my house later in the morning to arrive at the gym, able to enter in only 10 minutes before class anyway… When the shut-down started, I remember missing the quiet ‘drive time’ on the way to the gym, whether it would be a meditative space for me, or musical, or conversational with a spirit-friend on the phone. So that may be a return that grounds me again, even though it is a reliance upon my car each day…

So we welcome whatever arises for the day… Pema Chodron’s wisdom—each new arising is fresh, is to be encountered with open heart and curiosity for what abundance it will bring… Final Friday Zoom to enjoy and be thankful for. We’ve all done well, methinks, tending to what we’ve needed to tend. New openings, new arisings...welcome.

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