This month is the time when we celebrate American history, specifically the contribution Black men and women have made. My company made this gesture to honor Maya Angelou whose poem this quote is from...
Here's the whole poem:
Still I Rise
You may write me down in history
With your bitter, twisted lies,
You may trod me in the very dirt
But still, like dust, I'll rise.
Does my sassiness upset you?
Why are you beset with gloom?
’Cause I walk like I've got oil wells
Pumping in my living room.
Just like moons and like suns,
With the certainty of tides,
Just like hopes springing high,
Still I'll rise.
Did you want to see me broken?
Bowed head and lowered eyes?
Shoulders falling down like teardrops,
Weakened by my soulful cries?
Does my haughtiness offend you?
Don't you take it awful hard
’Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines
Diggin’ in my own backyard.
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, I’ll rise.
Does my sexiness upset you?
Does it come as a surprise
That I dance like I've got diamonds
At the meeting of my thighs?
Out of the huts of history’s shame
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
Leaving behind nights of terror and fear
Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear
Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave,
I am the dream and the hope of the slave.
* * * * *
Thank you, Maya Angelou.
I loved this photo of ballerina Aesha Ash. It's amazing to me how much the simple act of just exposing kids to something at an early age can enable them to build confidence, and be unafraid to try sports that aren't traditionally associated with being a young black woman.
I also wanted to share this great piece in The New York Times about how marathons mean much more than just the act of running to so many people, including a woman named Toni Carey, one of the founders of Black Girls Run, an organization that encourages and inspires African-American women to live a healthy lifestyle. Carey's organization partnered with Brooks Running to be included in their holiday catalogue (she refused compensation which I think is pretty rad) so she could highlight what Black Girls Run stands for:
African-Americans are a rarity among recreational runners. They make up only 5 percent of female runners, by Carey’s estimate, and the low numbers seem to have a self-perpetuating effect, discouraging some from even trying the sport. That is where Black Girls Run comes in, offering support and camaraderie.
I owe my very first positive experience with running to a black woman named Kisten who went to my high school. It was maybe sophomore year and we had to do the Presidential fitness test or whatever they called it. Basically it was gym class and I had to run a mile in under 10 minutes and I didn't think I could do it. I'd never run before and felt insecure about my slow jog around the school. Kisten was also doing the challenge but I knew it wouldn't be a big thing to her at all because she ran track and she was fast. When she saw me struggling she ran next to me for a block or so and said something like, "you can run a lot faster for a lot longer than you think you can." Then I hit that moment of runners high and the endorphins kicked in and I finished in like nine minutes. I remember that was the very first time I wanted to try running for fun. Thank you, Kisten. I hope you're still running and encouraging people wherever you are!
This week has been nutsy crazy pull-out-my-hair kind of busy. I'm not a big fan of having weeks like this more than once a month or something because they stress me out, even if they are productive. I kicked off raising donations for the PTA fundraiser, started multiple big projects at work that I'm sort of under the gun for, and there are a lot of household tasks (like doctor visits, getting new glasses for The Dude, paying bills, sending thank you notes, etc etc) that have been piling up that I finally got to. I've had to be a little creative in how I get my workouts in, considering I've had very little daylight hours free to go running.
The CEO of the company where I work once mentioned that he does this 7-minute workout every morning. I'd read about it before as being (what some people claim is) the most efficient way to work out your entire body. You can start by doing it once, then the next day try twice, then keep building.
Wall sits are one of my favorites and I love that I can use our mirrored closet door (something I'm not usually a fan of) to check my form. I love the little moon shadow on the wall next to me :) My feet kept sliding so I was having a hard time getting low enough.
I added a 10-pound weight to the air squats to build arm strength. My arms are probably the weakest they've been in a couple of years. I want to give them a lot more attention in 2018.
I can't tell you the amount of times I've let being stuck at home unable to exercise outside (for weather, darkness, kids sleeping, something in the oven, or whatever other reason forces me to be homebound) be an excuse to not work out. Then I remind myself that you really don't need much space at all to get your heart rate up or do some strength training. If you can run in place, then you have the space! No excuses.
I got some ten dollar resistance loops and they arrived this week. After fanning them out on my yoga mat, I see they look like they've already been man(kid)handled. No idea what that black schmutz is on them.
"Mommy, I like 'ya bands!!"
This guy somehow always manages to escape my photo feed so I wanted to capture his beautiful face. This is what he gives me :)
Urban Coyote is the best race organizer yet. Affordable entry fee, decent race shirt, lovely challenging course, and free photos after the race. This one was my fav because I'm just laughing while I'm running for no apparent reason! Jooooyyyy!
This one is ALWAYS camera ready! Goggles, tiara, broom, back scratcher. Just another Saturday in our house.
Our entire family is no stranger to sarcasm. Jon and I don't take ourselves very seriously which is why I think we get along so well.
A screenshot from a debate we were having while he was at the park with the boys. We like to heavily imply the other person should clean the house. It's our married housecleaning version of the game chicken :)
Tomorrow is supposed to be another gorgeous day in San Francisco and I will enjoy it while running!! I'm pretty excited to have zero plans so I can go wherever I want to run and do it for as long as I'd like.
What are you doing today?
Have you ever tried the 7-Minute Workout? What's your go-to workout routine?
(Almost) daily blogger. Sober runner. Mental sh*t stirrer. Pro gender equality in tech. Family first.