Thursday, January 26, 2017

Thinking Out Loud : Crafts, Tennis, Floating

I honestly can't believe it's Thursday already!  Where has the week gone?  Some weeks seem to dribble by in the slowest way possible, while other whoosh by in a blink.  I have a lot of thoughts to share today, so it's a perfect time to join the other bloggers and Think Out Loud.

Australian Open

If you're not a tennis fan, you can skip on to the next section because I need to talk about this crazy tournament!  I've been following tennis for the past few years, and I can honestly say that this has been the most surprising and insane Grand Slams (or tournament in general) that I've ever followed.  Not only did the men's #1 and #2 seeds fall early on in the tournament (to unseeded players none the less!), but the women's side has been unpredictable as always.  I love having a good underdog story, and on the women's draw we've had that with CoCo Vandeweghe and the incredibly resilient Mirjana Lucic Baroni.  To give you some perspective, Mirjana last won a match at the Australian Open in 1998, and is now in the semi-finals!  (I wrote this before her match against Serena, so her dream is either still alive or her amazing story ended against the GOAT.) edit- CoCo and Mirjana both lost, which means it's a Williams sisters final!!!


In the men's draw, it's so exciting to see Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal back in good form and competing at the top level.  When I started watching, they were both starting to go through injuries and people started to talk about retirement.  I'm hoping for a Fedal final and really don't know who I would cheer for if they both make it! (edit- Roger won...so VAMOS RAFA!)  Every match that I've followed has been so exciting and filled with so much suspense, so I'm really excited for the rest of the year in tennis!


Cross Stitching

source
A few weeks ago I mentioned that I want to start being more creative this year, and this month I'm kicking that off by getting back into cross stitching!  I've done a few projects in the past, and it's one of my favorite crafts to do.  I love how relaxing and mind-numbing it is (I could lose 2+ hours working on a design), and the finished product usually turns out beautifully.  There are so many "contemporary cross stitch" designs available now, so I'm excited to get started!


Reading Lately

I've been trying to read more books this month, and here are the ones that I've recently finished:

Talking As Fast As I Can - All Gilmore Girl fans need to read this.  Lauren Graham is a great author whose writing style matches her personality perfectly.  After finishing this book (in about 2 evenings) I started to watch Parenthood just to get more Lauren in my life.  10/10

Meb for Mortals - A lot of runners recommend this book, so I was excited to read it.  I'm a huge Meb fan (and sad to see he's retiring this year) and enjoyed hearing his advice.  Most of the stuff in the book wasn't earth shattering to me, but it was still nice to get a perspective on how he approaches training and racing.  7/10

Ubik - This book is part of my 30x30 quest to read books off of Time's 100 Best Novels list.  I don't read much sci-fi, so this book was definitely out of my comfort zone.  I liked the concept and story line a lot, but the writing style was hard to understand and really get into.  6/10

I'm in the middle of Today Will Be Different, which is so, so good!  I'll give my final thoughts after I finish it, but I'm plowing through it right now


Floating?

source
This is something that I need opinions about- Floating in sensory deprivation tanks.  If you haven't heard of it, you basically lie in a tank that's filled with Epsom salts and warm water.  The tank is sound proof and completely closed off, and you just float for an hour or hour and a half.  This is supposed to be great for recovery (especially if you combine it with a massage) but the idea of being shut off from the world kind of freaks me out.  On the other hand, I like to try new experiences and getting over fears, so I'm thinking of giving this a try!  Dan really wants to try it, so I might just give it a shot and hope I don't panic once the door shuts.  If anyone has tried floating or has opinions about it, please let me know!

edit- on my run last night I listened to the YHL Podcast and they talked about floating!  If you want to hear about someone's experience trying it out check out this episode.


World Marathon Challenge

Every year, there is an official World Marathon Challenge that takes runners to all seven continents to run seven marathons in seven days.  This year's challenge started on Monday with a race in Antarctica, then went to South America and North America.  I've been following the challenge this year, mostly because Ryan Hall is participating (if you haven't heard of him- look up some of his amazing stats!).  He recently retired from professional racing after dealing with exhaustion and injuries, but decided to take up the challenge to raise money for charity.  He's been sharing his experience in real time on Instagram, and it's been interesting to follow along.


Besides Ryan, there's also a runner who is attempting to break the record for fastest total race time and has broken three hours is all three races so far, as well as a woman who is running an extra few miles every day to complete a 50k on each continent.  It's been amazing and inspiring to follow these stories, and I'm cheering for them all to complete the challenge!


What are you thinking about?

26 comments:

  1. My MIL is actually obsessed with Rafa, so it has been a rough few years for her... I'm glad he is having a good go!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I saw there was a floating tank here in Pittsburgh & I'm not sure I could do it. I'm claustrophobic!! It sounds cool though. Also - I LOVE Parenthood. So, so good. I <3 Lauren Graham. Maybe I'll pick up her book! I'm currently reading 'The Shack'.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You definitely should read it..it's amazing and gives a great behind the scenes look at her shows.

      Delete
  3. I've floated after my two marathons and I do think it helped with recovery... also I'm a huge claustrophobe and thought it would be terrible but it was actually relaxing- message me if you have any questions :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wow that's great to hear! I'll definitely be talking to you about it.

      Delete
  4. I can't let myself get into any more crafting projects right now but if I was going to pick up a new one cross-stitching would be my first choice! A friend of mine tried out floating last spring on a whim because there was a really good groupon deal, he said it was a cool experience but not one that he needed to do on a regular basis. The World Marathon Challenge sounds absolutely amazing and totally exhausting!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm on the lookout for Groupons but haven't seen any yet :(

      Delete
  5. If you liked Today Will be Different, check out Where'd You Go Bernadette? By the same author! that is one of my absolute favorite books.

    I'm on the waiting list for Lauren Graham's book! I almost bought it a couple of weeks ago, but forced myself to put it down, leave the store and start of the many books I have in my to read pile.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've heard that one is even better! Thanks for the recommendation.

      Delete
  6. This is the truth: that when I read the part about the floating thing I started not being able to breathe and my anxiety levels went through the roof. Which means I probably have to do it just to get over my fears. I force myself to take elevators. I HATE THEM. EFFFFFFF. AHHHHHHH. Okay okay so I want to read that Lauren Graham book! I listened to Meb for Mortals and I feel bad saying this but it was totally boring. I'd read it if I ever got stuck in an elevator.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're crazy just like me!! if something scares me it means I have to give it a try.

      Delete
  7. LOVE LOVE LOVE PARENTHOOD! Seriously. Watched it maybe 6 months or a year ago, and I MISS them, and want to start the whole series over again. It's such a great show. And let me just say that you spend 6 seasons falling in love with this TV family, and the ending is satisfying, which is something I feel a lot of series finales kind of miss.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's so good! For some reason I tried to watch it years ago and didn't like it at all. I think I was expecting a comedy and was turned off by all the drama. Starting from the beginning helps too ;)

      Delete
  8. oh lordy i hated today will be different hahaha but i'm glad you're loving it! lauren graham's book is on my list, i've read her fiction one and was kinda eh. i started parenthood last year but fizzled out - i know i will love it though so i'll have to restart it.
    cross stitching! so fancy. i used to do that, it really is such a fun little craft and turns out so well!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah man, now I'm afraid that I'll hate the ending. Maybe I should just quit while I'm ahead lol!

      Delete
  9. Goodness me, floating sounds really interesting but also quite scary! Would love to know other opinions!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I want to hear from more people that tried it too! So far I've only heard good things.

      Delete
  10. I've always wanted to try cross stitching! Perhaps that needs to be my new hobby for 2017!

    I feel like I would be super freaked out by that floating tank. I am weird and don't really like baths or pools or spas or hottubs or whatever. I don't know why, I just don't! Though I used to when I was a kid.. nowadays I get in and I'm like "okay, I'm done".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You'll love it! It's a great way to lose a few hours ;)

      Delete
  11. Parenthood is one of my all time favorite TV shows! Ahh it just brings out all the emotions in me haha. I've also been intrigued by the idea of floating.. maybe I'll try it one day:)

    ReplyDelete
  12. I am on the waitlist at the library for Lauren Graham's book! I also have Maria Semple books on my to-read list but haven't read any of hers yet. I don't know about that floating thing! Can't wait to hear if you try it out. And wow, that world marathon challenge sounds amazing but challenging!

    ReplyDelete
  13. I used to love cross-stitching with my mom. I should definitely pick it back up sometime. Even though I have approximately zero artistic talent, I'm always so happy with how they turn out! I love Parenthood (and, of course, Gilmore Girls)! And now I need to read that book - thanks for the rec :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a fun and easy hobby! You just need a lot of patience.

      Delete