Back From Paradise …

Yesterday was one of my least favorite days of the year … the end of vacation. After eight amazing days of sun, sand and fun with the family, I made the seven hour drive back to reality.

It was so nice to see the family and have the time to catch up with everyone. We have been going to South Carolina with my dad’s brother and his family for 19 years now (crazy to think it’s been so long!), and it has never gotten old (though we have). Though my brothers opted out of the trip for the second year in a row, we did still have a couple extra faces this year – my cousin’s wife’s parents decided to join the party! We had a great time, the weather was almost perfect, and my cousin Julia and I continually discussed how we’d be able to find jobs as beach bums (if only such a thing existed. If you know of a way to make this happen, please let us know. Because we’re in.)

I had a lot of time to think during the trip, which, if you know anything about me, is both a good and bad thing. If you read Monday’s post, you know that I’ve had a lot on my mind lately. I’m not where I want to be in my life – in just about every facet – and I’m working through several difficult conflicts, so it was nice to have the opportunity to watch the waves, feel the sand beneath my feet, and be with my thoughts. There is something about the smells and sounds of the ocean … I felt as if a huge weight had been lifted off of my shoulders the second I saw and heard the waves. There really is nothing more relaxing and comforting to me.

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I also had the opportunity to play my first 18 holes of golf with my dad, uncle and cousin Bryant. It was … interesting. While I have to say that I did better than I expected, I also have to admit that I played almost every single shot with a 7 iron. It was the club that I used in my lessons, and clearly I need a little practice with the other clubs. But after I tried to use the driver the first hole (and dug up half of the tee area), I figured I needed to stick with what I knew. Seriously, other than the putter, nothing came out of that bag. But at least I didn’t have the ranger yelling at me to stay on the cart path every other hole (that was my dad) and I didn’t almost lose my club in the woods when it went flying along with the ball on a shot (that was my uncle). I have to admit, seeing how bad the other three were, too, made me feel a little better about my remedial golf skills. But check it out … at least I looked the part!

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But now it’s back to reality. Taught my first two classes post-vacation this morning, and surprisingly they felt pretty good (and, also surprisingly, the scale was not my enemy this morning … not sure how that happened but I’m NOT going to argue that one). I’m planning on enjoying the rest of what is technically the last day of my vacation. Until next year…

Vacation Time is Finally Here!

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Today begins my absolute favorite week of the year – vacation time! My family has been going to North Myrtle Beach, SC for almost 20 years, and I have to say, it’s never gotten old (though we certainly have)! I’m hitting the road early, in hopes of missing as much traffic as possible, and getting to the beach around 1 p.m. or so … early enough to still hit prime sun time!

Perhaps one of the most important things about my annual beach trip is that is gives me a reason to do something I’m not so good about throughout most of the year – rest and relax. I know that my body is craving a break about now, and with workouts only as strenuous as a daily walk down the beach, I’m sure I’ll come home nice and recovered, re-energized, and ready to take on some new challenges. I’ve been feeling a little tired physically lately, and I have had so much on my mind that I’m certainly overdue for a mental break, too (running is great, but it really only goes so far in turning my brain off sometimes … and the older I get, the more I ache the next day after a nice, hard run).

For my XSport Alexandria folks, here’s who you can look forward to seeing in my absence this week (note that some of the formats will be different than you are used to, so apologies in advance):

Sunday: 9:30 Piloxing will be BodyCombat with Leah this week. Beth will be stepping in for my 10:45 Pilates class.
Wednesday: Leah will be back for Piloxing at 6:00, and instead of Pilates, you will have BodyFlow with Allison at 7:15 this week.
Thursday: Jen will be covering my 5:45 cycle class.

I’ll be back in town next Saturday evening, so I’ll be home in time for Piloxing and Pilates again on July 21. Though a word of warning … after a week of sleeping in and taking it easy, it might be kind of scary (though that may be a good thing for you)!

Just because I’m on vacation doesn’t mean I’m taking a blog break, though! You can look forward to a couple of guest posts, some inspiration, and maybe a few random thoughts or exercises throughout the week. Hopefully after nine days of family time, I’ll come up with some new ideas for upcoming posts, because I’ve found that every time I’m with the family, I’m answering questions about nutrition or exercises or something health related.

Until next time … here’s to my favorite day of the year!