Category Archives: Uncategorized

Niagara Falls: Nov 2013

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The CrossFit WOD Cycle

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I have always said that there is a cycle that we go through with each and every CF workout of the day (WOD).  I have explained it to many people, and I finally created this graphic to demonstrate what I mean.

You have to click the graphic to see it.  I can’t figure out how to make it big enough to see without clicking on it…suggestions welcome.

CF cycle

In general, the cycle is “That’s not so bad” >> “I’m feeling good!” >> “”This sucks…please kill me…I’m dying…Oh God.” [insert optional crying] >> “Thank God it’s over…I think I’m going to puke.” >> “That was awesome!  I feel great!  Can’t wait to come back tomorrow!”

What do you think?  Do you go through this cycle when you CrossFit?

A book review!

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I don’t usually talk about my professional ife on here, but this book demands to be discussed.  So here goes!  Join me!

Recently I picked up Sheryl Sandberg’s hotly debated book “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead” on a whim.  I have heard mixed reviews about the book so I decided to read it to see what it was all about.  Honestly, I had no idea what it was really about until I read the inside cover while standing in the airport bookstore.

I now understand why this book has generated so much discussion and debate…and I think that is exactly its purpose!  Sheryl provides some facts and statistics that are staggering in some cases, and other that are unsurprising.  This is not a book that is all opinion-based.  It is a book written based on experience and supported by facts.  She discusses some otherwise ignored elephants that exist for women in the workplace and in the workforce…and in life.

My first “ah ha” while reading it was that the revolution in the workforce regarding gender equality has stalled.  I had to look away from the pages of the book to reflect on that, and then I realized it’s true.  Sheryl points out that women may have fought for equality (i.e. Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, et al.), but we haven’t done much to continue that movement.  As Sheryl says, “the promise of equality is not the same as true equality.”

Don’t misunderstand; this book is not a feminist manifesto.  Instead, I believe it is designed to empower women to confront the internal and external forces that cause them to doubt their own abilities and places in the workforce.  It is designed to cause us to question how things are and how we would like them to be, both professionally and personally as this world is changing – and the way we work along with it.

And, so, here is my bone to pick with Sheryl…and OH how I would love to have dinner with her to ask her about these things myself…

While I appreciate Sheryl’s perspective, there were some things about her stories that didn’t sit well with me.  For one, it seems she got to where she is (COO of Facebook) based on who she knew.  She worked for the Treasury and gained connections that way.  That’s how she got her job at Google and, subsequently, (it seems) her job at Facebook.  She was successful and moving up the ladder swiftly in her early thirties because, in her 20s, she was networked very well.  As I am in my early 30s and struggling to make my way through what she aptly calls the Career Jungle Gym (rather than a ladder), I feel old and unaccomplished in my career.  And I have no connections by which to gain executive-level positions.

She’s right; it isn’t a ladder anymore.  It’s a jungle gym.  Sometimes you must make a lateral move to reach the top…and there are many ways to get to the top.  Oh, and there isn’t just one place at the top.  That analogy is refreshing and it motivates me to find a way to the top.  It confirmed for me that I do want to lead a team and I can get there.  BUT I’m just behind her curve relative to age.  God, that’s just depressing.

I also do not have the resources that she mentions by which to have a fulfilling career and a fulfilling life with family.  Her chapter devoted to not leaving work before you leave…for children…was more of a discouragement.  I would like to think her approach is doable – and even allowable my most organizations, but realistically I do not think it is.

She does, however, provide some great pep talks for women (and for the men who surround them at home and at work).  She discusses how

  • women hold themselves back and sometimes make mistakes unconsciously that hold themselves back.
  • success and likeability correspond in a big, fat, ugly, unholy way for women at work.  In a nutshell, if you are successful you are not liked…by men AND women.
  • there are many double standards, some well-known and others lesser known.  Some examples are the differences in pay and differences in the way assertiveness is perceived based on gender (expected by men but viewed negatively when women are assertive or aggressive in the workplace).
  • you can have a nice balance of work and life…if you so choose.  She discusses how support from your partner is crucial.

There are so many topics that I couldn’t possible cover them all here.  Of course, her biggest message is to LEAN IN.  And you’ll have to read the book to understand exactly what she means by that.

The timing was right and I needed to read this book at this stage in my life and in my career.  Its message is mostly empowering and enlightening.  And I am glad it is causing so much dialogue and controversy because some of these issues need to be addressed.  Since reading the book, I have joined her online community to continue to learn from the book’s message.  And I created a group called 30-somethings who are leaning in because, damnit, we can’t all be executives in our late 20s/early 30s!

Have you read Sheryl’s book?  What did you think?

Damn air conditioner!

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My dad once had to deal with an A/C issue and apparently had some words for it as he attempted to fix it. As a result my older brother’s first words were “damn air conditioner.” True story.

This morning we had to get a new A/C and I find myself saying those same words.

While it’s true that we knew we needed to plan for a replacement unit soon, we did not expect it to happen now. My crystal ball fails me.

The sickly ironic part was that we were having a conversation about our debt snowball last night. Shortly after that hubby went to lock up the house for the night and, from the hallway, I heard him say “oh, we have a problem.”

Immediately images of awful problems flooded my mind, such as well…a flood. Or a cat with a broken leg. Or another leaky light switch.

Crazy to think I was a little relieved to hear the A/C wasn’t cooling, huh? It wasn’t another flood and the cats were both fine. We are fine. Yes, we are. So it was set to the low 70’s and it was stuck running at 80. Not uncommon in Florida…our A/C units freeze up and need fluid often. But the line wasn’t cold like it should be, so there was some concern that it was bigger than a frozen unit that needed to thaw. The line wasn’t clogged so we had to wait to get the prognosis from the repair guy.

Of course, this was at 10:30 at night. And of course this was the night before hubby was going to be on shift for 24 hours beginning at 8am. And he is at the top of the order-in list, so chances were good that he would be ordered in for Friday making it a 48-hour shift. Of course. Of course I would have to deal with this on a day that he is on shift because nothing ever happens on the days that he is home and able to take care of it. *shaking fist*

He went into problem-solving mode and called our go-to A/C guy. He left a voicemail. Of course he wasn’t going to answer at 10:30 at night. Why would he?

So we turned off the unit and slept in an 80-degree house. It was lovely. *sarcasm dripping – or is it sweat?* Oh, sure, we opened windows…to let in some of the “cool” 78 degree September Florida air. We also brought box fans into the bedroom…to push the hot air around.

This morning at 6:30, hubby’s phone rang. It was the A/C guy. Thank god. He would stop by the office to get his tools and his truck and then he would be on his way. Now the dilemma for us was deciding who would stay home to let him in. Hubby decided he wanted to be present to hear what the guy said and decide what to do. Because chances are good that if he went to work there would be many things keeping from being able to talk to me about what was going on. It’s likely there would be a violent car crash, structure fire, and three codes in a row while I needed him on the phone…because Murphy loves that shit.

So hubby took care of it. Compressor failed…it’s 12 years old. He was good cop and I was bad cop as we discussed price. Tomorrow afternoon we will have a brand new unit installed. And, as a perk, we will get all new copper! Because the expense of the unit should be sweetened with this perk. Ah, the things we get excited about as homeowners. Now I only wonder if they will let us keep the old copper so we can sell it to help pay for the DAMN AIR CONDITIONER. 🙂

Life.

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I went rummaging through my archived posts to find my V-day post and realized it’s been a awhile  since I posted.  (Longer than I thought.)  Life has a funny way of sneaking by, doesn’t it?

I have been buried in other projects that are business-related, so my personal blogging has taken a back seat.  I have updated the bucket list, however.  Finding words isn’t as fun as scratching things off the bucket list!

Since July 2012 (when I last posted), I started a business and wrote a book with my mother.  That’s been an adventure, and it has consumed a lot of my spare time.  In other news, hubby and I went hiking in Utah and Arizona (see bucket list) and then fell into the pit that is the holiday season.  I mean…not a bad pit…an endearing one.  Can pits be endearing?  Aw, hell, the holidays are stressful…let’s be real.

Oh and my last post was about the water intrusion.  Update there: hiring a contractor was hellish, so hubby is going to do the work himself.  All except for a few things like drywall that he doesn’t like doing.  The floor is still ripped up, there are still no baseboards, there is still mildew on the walls, and it’s exactly as it was.  We’ll get there.

Writing is cathartic for me, so I will try not to let time slip away on here again.