Business. It happens.

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Life got CRAZY all of a sudden.

And I’ve only had time to snap 4 pictures in the last 4 day. Who am I!?!?

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And I’ve been wearing heels for 4 days straight… and this is what happens. Clearly I’m an amateur.

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And then I realize that I’ve been working so hard that I need a large glass of this.

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So this is what it feels like to have a tough, challenging, rewarding, FUN job!

Huh. Weird.

A few weeks ago I got a new job working for a sales company. It was only a small pay increase, but something that I’ve wanted for many years now. I’ll be working more hours that I was before, but I’ll be doing something that I enjoy. I’ll also have a lot more control over how much money I can/will make. Basically, if I work hard — and I’m good at my job, my paycheck will reflect that.

I’m stoked.

Now I just need to find some good walking high heels… any suggestions? I have a pair of Nine West’s… but I can’t wear them every day. Oh and here’s a tid-bit, feet swell when you walk… and then your shoes are TOO SMALL —- OUCH! I’ll be making a fairly large shoe investment this weekend. Icing/soaking my feet every night is not an ideal situation.

Thoughts from this week:

  1. CrossFit rocks. I’m a better person with it in my life. I’m happier, more focused and motivated. It’s good stuff.
  2. Really looking forward to Friday night… Justin is taking me to see Brad Paisley for my birthday!!
  3. Why is Costco so much fun? I’m in love with that store. Still. I got 80 keurig pods for $25. What!
  4. Bubble baths are sometimes a necessity — until you can’t stand them anymore. The sweat is getting into your eyes — then you know it’s time to get out before you overheat.
  5. Rocking out to Christian music in the morning while you put on your make up is quite possibly the BEST way to start out the day.
  6. Convincing your boss to buy an office keurig may be the best way to spend a Wednesday afternoon.
  7. When you burn chicken apple sausage, slather it in avocado — you’ll never know the difference. Truth.
  8. Busy people forget to eat. Swear. And I always thought that was an anorexic chick excuse. She’s not lying.
  9. Showing up to work 30 minutes late to your first day on the job won’t get you fired. Unless you show up in your PJ’s — I can’t help you there. True story, I was 30 minutes late to my first day. Tragedy. But I was dressed appropriately. Win.
  10. I’m STOKED to have weekends off. And work 9-5ish. Never take a job where you have to work weekends – if you don’t have to, that is. It pretty much sucks. Like the worst.

XO

Paisley

“Pulling Up” Mental Discouragement

November 2010 I started CrossFit at CrossFit Sac in Sacramento. Coach Dave opened my eyes to a whole new world/concept that most of us now know as CrossFit… or, “the crazy heavy weight lifting stuff.”

[Dave giving me a high 5 as I assume the “recovery position” (dead on the floor).]

In the beginning of my CrossFit adventure, I often felt and looked like this… tired, out of breath and defeated.

I still do.

Pull ups were always a goal and challenge for me. I dreamed of doing consecutive pull ups and mastering that skill. I first started with a green band. Over the next few months I moved up to smaller bands.

And then one day, I didn’t need the band anymore! I remember the first day that I got an unassisted pull up… I screamed. Out of sheer excitement. And then I did them every time I came to the box.  I was so proud of myself for finally getting a pull up. I overcame many obstacles that day. But primarily, I proved… once again, that with hard work — I could get what I wanted.

And that “girl” hands weren’t for me.

In December, I was the strongest and fittest I had ever been.

I was doing CrossFit 5+ times a week, running, yoga… truly over training. But was having a blast.

And then I left for Arizona.

CrossFit was no longer a part of my life. I tried my best to do body weight work outs, use the pull up bars, run, etc… it just wasn’t the same.

When I got home, pull ups were gone. I was using the band again. As much as I hated admitting it, I was really upset about this. I would say, “It’s the journey, right? Not the destination?” But I still felt sad that I had lost strength. That I had missed out on 5 months of CrossFit. And that I couldn’t do a fricken pull up anymore!

A few weeks ago, I found my pull ups.

And a new job.

By losing and then finding my pull up again, I realized something: I am in control of my happiness. I can make changes in myself and ultimately have what I want. If I don’t like a job, I can work hard and change that. If I don’t like that I can’t do a pull up, I can change that. My new CrossFit coach, Courtney, told me the other day, “Life is to short to spend it unhappy.”

I don’t like to spend too much time on the CrossFit bandwagon, but for me… it’s so much more than a workout. It makes me a better person in all areas of my life: Relationships, career, sleep, motivation, and so on. A simple concept such as a pull up has spoken volumes to me about what kind of person I am. I’m competitive, type A and persistent. I work hard for what I have. And at the end of the day, what I have is family and friends who love me.

Oh, and a pull up. Thank you very much.

Today, it’s about overcoming mental discouragement. Taking little bites at a time. Planning and working towards goals.

God + CrossFit

XO

Paisley

 

Cover

Sunday’s at work are very laid back. I like them because I get to kind of relax and think about the upcoming week. Today I solidified a fairly new love of mine.

I love cover bands. I love covers.

Hence my extensive library of Boyce Avenue albums.

Here are a few of my favorites:

I want to hug this little girl. Can I have her, please??

And this one makes me cry:

This one never gets old, also makes me think of happy memories with Nadine:

XO

Paisley

What are your favorite cover bands? Any songs in particular?

For me it’s Boyce Avenue, Fast Car. I love it because it’s a new version of an old favorite. The song makes me think of my parents and happy memories of being at home with my family.

Good Stuff

I love writing the Things I Love posts… but some of these things aren’t products. It’s just GOOD stuff. Stuff that happens in my life that doesn’t always find a spot in the blog. But definitely deserves one.

– Baby ducks. I spotted these guys on my way to breakfast the other day. So stinkin’ cute.

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– Mexican ceaser salad. Never knew it existed…

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– Copious amounts of honey dew. And I mean copious. This time I added some fro-yo to the top. I love that my work gives free food — which includes frozen yogurt.

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– Chocolate mint water. I waited a very long time before I tried this stuff. But oh em geeee!!! It’s so amazing. It’s literally like drinking chocolate. I usually drink 3 every day I work. Chocolate wasted, anyone? ha…Oh and those shoes in the background. I finally got them fixed at the shoe repair store (there’s one right by my house)… and I’m probably going to wear them every day for a week. I’ve missed them. It’s like getting a new pair of shoes!

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– Sitting outside at work on sunny days. The weather is so perfect. And I work in such a beautiful area. I’m a lucky girl.

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– My new phone. And looking at that picture every time I use my phone. (Check out the weather… jealous??) hehe

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– This guy. Many of you know me personally. With that, many of you know the history of Jay and I. Here’s the skinny… Girl meets boy at age 15. Girl and boy fall in love. Girl and boy fight like the Notebook. Girl and boy can’t stop loving each other. Girl and boy give up fighting. 7 years later… Girl and boy are happy.

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XO

Paisley

What are you loving these days? 

Counting My Lasts

Last weekend I was talking to my family about my Arizona life. Courtney told me that I’ve done an amazing job of making poop sparkle. The rest agreed. Geee… thanks.

I hadn’t thought of it that way until then. But they’re right. And I’m pretty proud of myself. I’ve been able to turn a some-what (actually, very) crappy situation into a good time. Overall I’ve had a blast here. I’ve been able to explore several cities. Take a few trips home and to San Diego. I’ve met new friends. Bought some awesome stuff/clothes. Learned how to adjust my fitness goals. And practiced writing.

As my time here comes to an end, I’m starting to count my “lasts”…

1. My last box of Keurig k-pots

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During one of my first weekend Costco trips, I decided that in order to ensure happiness at BOLC — I NEEDED a Kuerig. I was concerned about dropping so much money on a coffee maker. But decided it was worth it because it ensured flawless coffee for the next 4 months. And oh my gosh, I was right on the money with this one.

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I love my Keurig and I totally support spending money on good, FAST coffee — the kind that doesn’t involve driving to and waiting in a line to pay $4 for… ahem, Starbucks. I can make it hot or iced. I can pick the size/strength. I can make tea. And all I have to do is push a few buttons. No grinds or crazy cleaning hassles to deal with. I love it. And the 60 k-pots that came with it was pretty much the exact amount that I needed. If it could brew beer, I’d probably marry it. The only problem is that I’m going to have to lug or ship this sucker home! I can see it now… To the southwest customer service: “Please be careful with that suitcase, because it has my Keurig in it!”

2. Last few ruck marches

This one I’m not going to miss. I’ve never been a fan of lugging around a bunch of weight on my back. I have a hard time breathing and my legs are short. Enough said. Every time I think about my short legs I instantly think of my Dad. He thinks this attribute of mine is very comical considering he’s the one who gave them to me. Thanks a lot, stubs!

Also, rucking a backpack instead of a ruck is not normal. Nor is in comfortable or logical. And 2ish miles really doesn’t deliver any fitness benefits. Therefore, Wednesday morning is a wash. I only have one more and I’m not sad to see them go.

This morning was one of those legendary ruck marches. I kept moving my legs. And with every step I thought, “I only have to do this one more time.”

3. Last few weekends

I only have two of them left. It’s bitter sweet. My weekends here have been my Heaven. I look forward to them and put a lot of thought and planning into them. I usually spend them alone which is peaceful and enjoyable for someone who spends most of her weekdays surrounded by people and constant talking.

This weekend I only get one day due to my dreaded staff duty. I asked Stephanie to join me in a Tucson day trip. I’m looking forward to enjoying Tucson for one last (maybe) time before I jet back home. There will be running, pedicures, lunch, grocery shopping and exploring involved… all key ingredients to an Army Paisley weekend.

4. Last few “I love you, Auntie” picture text messages from MommaG

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Every Wednesday my Mom watches Kenzlee and I get to join in on the fun through pictures. They usually involve two amazing things: my niece and my horse.

I’m looking forward to being able to physically join the fun. But they are definitely a sparkle in my week. 🙂

Tonight:

I planned on going grocery shopping, again. I made the list and planned it all out. I only have one egg left and no greek yogurt. Translated, that means breakfast is kind of non-existent. I live for breakfast so this is a problem.

I was cruising around and found this recipe and decided that I really didn’t want to get in my car after all. And I have “enough” of the ingredients to get by one more day.

And then I saw this in my refrigerator:

There’s only 2 left. And since I’m in the spirit of counting my lasts, I decided to celebrate. Celebrate what? Counting my lasts, duh.

And then grocery shopping was canceled.

Thanks to Jillian Michaels, I can barely walk. James told me that I was walking as if I needed to go to the bathroom — except in slightly more visual terms. Sore on so many levels it’s embarrassing.

Jillian Michaels kicked my ass. And I’m a CrossFitter (ex-CrossFitter these days). And I’m well aware of how this makes me look: lame. 

So I grabbed the beer, put my PJ’s on, bought a new book on my Kindle and I’m calling it a night.

Although this chapter at BOLC is ending, I’m happy to say goodbye. I’ll miss the gorgeous Arizona mountains. I’ll miss my rental car. And I’ll miss my weekend get-away’s. But that’s the way things go. All good (and bad) things must come to an end.

As I count my “last’s,” I’m keeping a positive outlook. I feel that I was blessed with the opportunity to become an intel officer. And I feel happy that I was able to train in Arizona over the winter. As many bad things have happened within my class (mostly frustrations), I’m thankful for the opportunity and the experiences.

And… Jillian Michaels, I’ll be back at it tomorrow, but for now…thank goodness for ibuprofen.

XO – Paisley

There’s a reason…

Why would someone spend over $20 on a pair of workout pants? You’re just going to sweat in them.

Why would someone spend over $60 on a pair of workout pants? Because they motivate me.

Last night, I was just going to unpack my bag (yes, still packed from the weekend) and go to bed… But then I saw all my Lululemon. And then I really wanted to put it on. And then I wanted to go running. And so I did.

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There’s a reason people set the bar high. There’s a reason they push you. That reason is to see you succeed, learn and do better than you thought possible. That pushy-ness has been happening this week. I’ve been pushed farther than I feel comfortable with. Mentally.

For all you incoming or current BOLC students… MOD D is no joke. For me, that is. I don’t even feel like going to the gym when I get out of class. That is so not me. All I feel like doing is going home and staring at a wall. Almost. It is so draining.

But… there’s a reason I’m such a positive person. I’m hunting the good stuff tonight. I’m grateful for this week because I’ve been able to see my potential. I’m able to see all that I’ve learned over the last few months go into effect. My class is at the “run” phase and it feels great looking back at what we’ve accomplished.

Yes I only get about 10 minutes to shovel food down at lunch time. And yes I’m exhausted. And yes I can. not. wait. for the weekend to be here. But isn’t the whole point of me being here to learn and train? Well, Army, you sure got your money’s worth this week cause this soldier is trained to the MAX!!

Last year, right after I became a Lieutenant, I went through a leadership course. It was challenging. I didn’t feel comfortable speaking in front of my peers. Each day I was forced to present and/or talk about something in front of them. I, along with the rest of my classmates had to do this every day. By the end of the week I had even sung SCREAMED Happy Birthday … to MYSELF in front of them. It was mortifying. My last obstacle included presenting my leadership philosophy. I had to deliver it with excitement, motivation and a sense of dedication, etc. It was a challenge.

After everyone gave their philosophies, I was presented with the award for “most improved” — yes, it was a shake-a-weight, but still. The point is, there’s a reason people set the bar high. They see potential and want us to learn, improve and overall: succeed.

I’m fortunate to have people in my life who see the potential in me. They see the possibilities and my desire to learn.

This week has taught me a lot about myself. And for that I am grateful. Even though I hate being in a classroom for 10+ hours — it doesn’t last forever. I say this all the time, “I can do anything for 5 minutes, 5 hours and/or 5 days.” This time it was 5 days. I got this.

Tonight:

I did laundry and packing. I got the “OK” from my instructor to leave on time tomorrow. I’ll be sure to catch my 7pm flight. I can’t wait to dance the night away and celebrate Dianna and Shane getting married! I love weddings… don’t you!?!?!

XO – AP

PS: I’m so happy to be back at morning PT (no more combatives). This morning we did CrossFit inspired buddy workouts… of which involved squats. Oh my, those legs are already feelin’ it. Just wait until I’m back home… it’s going to be a very steep climb getting back to where I was. Ouch! — insert LOTS of ibuprofen!

So I found the skintight pants.

If you want to read about the Army, stop reading. I don’t feel like talking about the Army… other than to share this picture:

Seriously. My life is NOT that bad. Waking up at 4am and laughing my butt off at combatives. I’ll take it.

A few months ago I found the blog, SkinnyRunner. One of the first posts I read featured her in these jeans:

Ever since then I’ve been on a hunt. Kinda like a shoe hunt, but less intense. I tried on about 4 bazillion pairs when Nicole was in Tucson. No luck. But then I found some at good ol’ Gap — only because I had $30 in rewards to spend there…

So here’s my deal, I don’t know what shirt to wear with them!! I have the perfect shoes (thanks to my previous hunt), but the shirt is killing me.

I’m loving the striped shirts with them… If only I had my closet here in Arizona — we’d be set!

Do you wear colored denim? What kind of shirt do you pair with them?

What better way to debut the red denim than an outing in Phoenix!?!

Phoenix Weather:

Gotta love that 0% chance of rain… and 90 degrees in March!

Guess I better pack the swim suit and sun block!!

On an Army note… My first day as class leader was a success. No one died. And no one got yelled at. suuuuper. 

Tonight’s Workout:

  • Talk on the phone
  • Pack for the weekend
  • Waste time
  • 4 Rounds: 25 sit ups, 25 push press (25#), 25 squats, 25 flutter kicks
  • 3 mile run


Got any fun plans for the weekend??

XO

Paisley

 

Lucky Number 5

– Have you ever found yourself enjoying grocery shopping? It’s usually something that I rush through. I make a list ahead of time and try to get out of there as fast as possible. Not today. I found out that Tucson has a Sunflower Market. Um, hello… Only my favorite store. I think I spent an hour in there. I walked down every single isle. And looked at e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g. I was in foodie heaven. They have so many cool things… coconut milk yogurt, quinoa tortillas, 0.99 cent blackberries, nutritional yeast, herb goat cheese… and the list goes on.

– While shopping I chatted with my love: G.I. Jane. She’s my kindred spirit. Always a joy talking to her. We’ve been apart since November. And in just 5 weeks, that will all change. I’m really busy during the weekdays, duh, so I love being able to chit chat on the the weekends. Sometimes it’s about nothing important. Other times… it’s pertinent, top-secret level, girl talk. Today it was about melatonin. And how I’d like for the grocery store to alphabetize their vitamin isle.

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I will be taking one of these tonight before bed. 8pm bedtime is definitely in my near future.

– Ever since my cousin talked about TJ’s cupcakes, I’ve been craving them. I stood in line at Coldstone last night and ended up leaving because I already ate frozen yogurt that day the line was too long. So when I saw these little beauties, I knew I had a winner.

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I was ecstatic. That’s actually an understatement.

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Blogging + Cupcake + Sunday = LOVE

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– I didn’t eat lunch until 3:00pm. I thought I was going to die. And I’m not eating paleo anymore. So there. I’m doing whole foods instead, but with a paleo emphasis. And eating whatever the hell I want — in moderation. But not gluten. Gluten makes me feel like poop.

After making this decision, I read this:

(Source)

Enough said.

So there. Bring on the oats and tortillas. It’s not like I was going to stick to paleo for very long anyways… who was I kidding?

– A straight guy told me which kind of jeans I was wearing today — and that they were awesome. I can’t decide if I dig it or not.

– I judge blog credibility by what the person eats. What’s wrong with me? I think I have eating jealously.

– Today I decided that I’m not doing the clench drill at combatives tomorrow. And if someone asks me why, I’m telling them, “Because my mom said no and she won’t let me.” Truthfully, I don’t want to get hurt. (But MommaG really did say that.) I was really sore yesterday from getting the crap beat out of me (by girls). I’m not physically or mentally prepared to have a large dude throw punches at my face and ribs. No thanks. I’ll take the wimp card on this one.

– I can do anything for 5 minutes. I can do anything for 5 days. Therefore, I can do anything for 5 weeks. 5 years? Now that’s a different. I have 5 weeks of training left. And I couldn’t be happier.

– I’m REALLY loving this song: Take Care (feat. Rihanna) by Drake. It’s been on repeat all afternoon. Pretty sure my neighbor hates me. oops.

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– I’m psychotic. And I went to the gym tonight and did this, again. Except this time I did all 10 rounds. Apparently 13 miles wasn’t enough.

I almost threw up twice. This is a really hard work out. Or else I’m just really out of shape.

– The gym looks clean and sparkly during the day time. I like it so much better.

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– Before I went to the gym I threw two chicken breasts and 1/2 of this (TJ’s Salsa Verde) into my crock pot.

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When I got back, dinner was ready. What more could a person ask for… I mean, it’s basically an automatic dinner maker. You throw stuff at it and it spits out amazing-ness.

– Talked to Mr. Medical Sales today. I asked him, “Do you even know where I am?” Him: “Uh, yes… Mexico!” Me: “HAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!” for 5 minutes, “EXACTLY!” He’s going to be in Phoenix next weekend. scoooooore!!

Remember when I made my “lent” decision…?

Well this pretty much sums it up…

True story. Sad story.

5 weeks kiddo’s. 5 weeks!!

XO

A. Paisley

TGIF Thoughts

1. Did anyone else know that COCONUT M&M’s exist?? Why am I just now finding this out!?!? They’re delicious.

2. It’s very safe to say that I am NOT a bad ass at combatives. In fact, I royally suck. I’m better at fighting with my words. Oh and I don’t really like my hair getting all messed up and having bloody lips. Just isn’t really my thaaang.

3. I attempted this workout last night. And I got through round 6 and called it quits. I don’t suggest it. 10 rounds is a little much — mentally. But that’s just me. I will attempt the full 1,000 next week. I had running on my brain.

4. I’m really, really, REALLY excited to run the 1/2 marathon on Sunday. Like really. The last time I ran a 1/2 was in October at the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco.

5. I miss CrossFit in a big, bad, sad, huge, enormous, agonizing way. I miss my back muscles. I miss the camaraderie of the gym. I miss my coaches. But… running works for now, I guess.

6. As much as my life kind of sucks here, I’m really grateful for the entire experience. I love that I’ve been able to explore a new area (Tucson), meet new people, learn my branch (still in process), train for a marathon, and everything in between. Week days pretty much suck. But I keep reminding myself: I’m getting paid to be here. It’s. Not. That. Bad.

7. Thank GOODNESS it’s Friday.

Hunger Games tonight!!

XO – AP

 

Army Leadership

Happy Friday!

My favorite weekday of the week. duh. 

Yesterday I took a break from blogging.

Thursday morning’s workout:

Teams of 4, complete:

  • 1,000 jump rope
  • 400 box jump
  • buddy carries (2 across field)
  • Run 200m after each exercise

I don’t think I could have been any happier… Being able to do CrossFit at Ft. Huachuca. BOLC is slowly redeeming itself thanks to our PT officer. And I’m slowly learning how to function on gallons of iced coffee, a lack of sleep and running too many miles.

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A standard over here: greek yogurt, banana, strawberries, GF granola and almond butter.

Unbeknownst to me, my day got even better — thanks to a visit from the COL. She’s inspiring, motivating, influential, funny and above all; the perfect example of leadership. Being that I just wrote a paper on leadership, this topic is hot on my mind.

Leadership, to me, is influencing.

There’s an entire Army field manual written on leadership. So obviously there’s a lot more to it, but everyone has their own philosophy and way of leading or not.

She made several statements that really stuck with me throughout today.

“This (points to uniform) does not define me. I define me.”

Remember when I wrote a post on this? I was pleased to see that my thoughts were valid supported. A leader, someone who has been in the Army for years, has the same idea on this topic. My best friend is G.I. Jane, I also had this conversation with her. I said, “When we’re together — we are Nadine and Hayley. Not PV2 and 2LT. No matter which rank we wear on our chest, that doesn’t define our friendship.” I feel really strongly about this. Yes I’m in the Army, but that’s not all of me. I have other significant things that contribute to who I am as ‘Hayley.’

COL also talked about some of her own leadership values. She said that a leader should make their subordinates want to follow them. That they should rally around the leader and do things without being asked.

Having her come and talk with us was motivating and exactly what our class needed. Sometimes talking things out makes you feel better.

After class I did this workout:

It was hard. Wednesday I had a hard time getting through my workout too. I don’t think I’m eating enough, or something? Luckily I had some shot blocks in my gym bag. Those helped, but I was still having to stop and drink water often too often.

After a good self-screaming session, “Stop being a little b$!ch and just finish it!” – I finally did:

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boom. 

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I also busted out the ol’ Nikes. Still having foot problems. I’ll be making a trip to the running store in Tucson this weekend. I’m sick of being in pain.

Last night I finally got some sleep. Benedryl = my friend. 🙂

This morning’s workout:

  • warm ups/jumping jacks/conditioning drills
  • pull ups
  • toes-to-bar
  • shuttle drills
  • and…?

This weekend’s happenings:

  1. Benson is in Las Vegas for a horse show!! So wishing I could be there. Good luck, Amanda!

2. Tucson Bootcamp Mud Run

Except this time it will be lots of GREEN! (Picture from Halloween Mud Run 2011 with Dianna).

3. St. Patricks Day!!

There will DEFINITELY be some green beer drinking and pinching.

4. COSTCO. My favorite.

5. Sleep, finish the Hunger Games (I know… I’m still not done reading yet!), running store, manicure, 8 miles?

Hope you have an amazing weekend. And wear some GREEN tomorrow!!!

XO

Paisley