The Sneaky Hate Spiral: Antidote

Today’s Happy Note: Got a lot of work done!  I was in my office from 9-4 (very productive!) and then did stuff for my other job (phone calls and computer work) from 4-5 and 7-9 (hit the gym in between!).  About ten hours total, which is a lot, but I don’t feel so overhwelmed, and not feeling overwhelmed is the best feeling in the world.

Happy Note #2: This post from Joanne.  I thought I was the only young twenty-something woman who wanted to go on real dates!  Apparently there are other people who are not into the frat party make-out scene and who don’t consider sloppy drunken dancing romantic.  Yay, I’m not alone!

Okay.  So.

Have you ever read Hyperbole and a Half? It’s definitely one of the funniest blogs on the Internets.  If you’re ever feeling down, the first thing you should do is go there.  My point in all this is to reference the ubiquitous Sneaky Hate Spiral post.

Allie describes it better than I ever could, but in sum: the SHS occurs when a bunch of little, annoying things start building up and you get more and more angry until an explosion results.  My SHS began first thing this morning when I woke up fifteen minutes before I was supposed to be at work.  I have been doing this thing lately where I wake up to my alarm, press snooze a few times, then press “dismiss” (i.e., “off”) and close my eyes and think “oh I’ll just lie here for another minute.”  Then, of course, a minute turns into a half an hour.  So I woke up at 8:45.  I was only fifteen minutes late though!

Anyways, the SHS continued with the worst headache of my life accompanied by a terrible feeling of misalignment in my spine and neck.  It felt like someone had twisted up my back like a rope.  And the head pain:I  felt like I was 50 feet underwater (I used to be a diver and regularly dove down to the bottom of a 20 foot pool; this was approximately 2.5 times worse).

There honestly weren’t that many other serious things, but the headache just magnified every tiny nuissance.  I ran over my big toe with a cart at work.  Then I dropped an interview and all the pages fell out and came out of order and I had to put them all back in by hand.  Then I started getting really angry at L (who I didn’t even see today) and could not stop thinking about how much I suck at therapy.  Things just sort of continued in this pattern.

But then.  I only had twenty five minutes to book it home from work and make it to the gym before five (I have a student membership, so I can’t go between 5-7:30 BUT I can go at 4:58.  Ha.).  I was determined to get there, if only so that I didn’t feel guilty later on.  I was just going to make myself get on the elliptical and sweat it out for 30 or 40 minutes.

When I arrived, I noticed that there was a 5:30 kickboxing class.  I thought, “why not?”  I lifted for about 25 minutes and then headed in.

I think this kickboxing class changed my life.  Let me restate this:

I am in love, my friends.  Sadly, there are no boys involved in this relationship (unless the super hot instructor counts).  But there is me: a very strong, sweaty me.  I have no idea what happened in that 50 minutes but the SHS snapped.  And not only did I rid myself of the SHS monster, I left happy. It was a deep, pervasive happiness that I haven’t felt in a long time.  I am not sure if the relief came from the hundreds and hundreds of punches into the punching bag or the me time, or what.  But a little thing inside me clicked.  I realized that I can manufacture my own happiness. And maybe this means going to a kickboxing class, rather than coming into some sort of serene internal peace.  I don’t care.  Happiness is happiness, and I’ll take what I can get.

I left the class headache-free and practically glowing.  At the beginning, as I was looking in the mirrors, I was fiercely angry at my body — “why can’t my thighs be smooth, and why do I have this massive bump of fat on my stomach, and why are my breasts so painfully large?”  At the end, I actually felt a confidence in my body that has not been around in a long time. I felt so strong; like I could take on the world.  I felt better than I ever have lifting weights or pounding away on the elliptical (both of which are considerably fun).  I felt like I could actually see my muscles firming up.

I was no longer angry at L.  I was no longer angry at myself.  The anger just poured out of my body.  And I am so unbelievably thrilled.  And content.  Right now.

Have you ever had a workout that left you feeling strong, confident, and healthy?  Has a workout ever turned your day around completely?

The eats:

Swirly raspberry overnight oats.

I refuse to give up my once-weekly diet Snapple with aspartame.  I have a little pile of empty bottles that I’m stashing behind my computer at work — I don’t think that we have a glass recycling container and I am feeling too lazy to take them outside.

Monster leftovers lunch topped with a two-egg puff and a side of granola bar.  Snacked on a TJ’s single-serving bag of trail mix before my workout and many handfuls of WF chocolate cherry trail mix afterwards (SO good!).

Blueberry-banana smoothies are so good.  I was craving a muffin, so I walked to WF to get one (theirs are always good and fresh).  I meant to just get a muffin, bananas, and a non-dairy milk.  I left with said muffin, coconut milk, dark chocolate, dried mango, mushrooms, trail mix, and coconut milk.  The muffin is chocolate chip.  Nom!

Dessert was a few pieces (this is a really small container) of banana chip bread with melted dark chocolate.

Mmmmm, meltable.

Overall, today was a bad day that turned into a good one!

Have you ever had a Sneaky Hate spiral day?  How do you get rid of it? Sometimes I feel like you just have to let it run its course…

Also: Mama Pea (one of my most favorite bloggers; she is so sweet) is giving away a cookbook! Check it out.

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11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Sarah
    Jul 12, 2010 @ 22:57:56

    That’s an interesting way of thinking about it, how the littlest of things such as waking up late or an ache/pain can start the downward spiral, and soon you have a day where it seems as though everything is going wrong. I like how you used kickboxing to feel good about your body though – I’ve always wanted to try something like that, and I miss the feel-good buzz I used to get from exercise, although I don’t miss the constant stream of injuries that resulted from my excessive pursuit of it!

    Sarah x

    Reply

  2. Sarah
    Jul 12, 2010 @ 22:58:19

    ps I like the new layout 🙂

    Reply

  3. ~Jessica Zara~
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 06:19:17

    That last photo is just too appetizing to be allowed…I wanted to lick that dark chocolate right off the screen 😉

    So pleased you managed to turn your day around: Body Pump usually does that for me too. In fact group classes in general so because the focus is taken off of a number on a screen or a personal time: it’s about being in the atmosphere of several people who are trying to get stronger and fitter, enjoying the music and exercizing for fun primarily. Plus, weight lifting always makes me feel strong and confident as opposed to pushing it to burn calories or punish myself. Running does the same for me, provided none of my injuries are acting up 😉

    Hope today is a good one right from that start!

    ~Jess~
    xxxxxxxx

    P.S lol Agree with Sarah: new layout is fab 😀

    Reply

  4. Joanne
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 07:02:24

    First of all the new layout is dreamy! I’m in love with it!

    Second of all, thanks so much for the comment/shout out about my post! I hate what the dating world has come to. It’s ridiculous. It’s fine though. Homemade bread is the new boyfriend. Haven’t you heard?

    I’m SO GLAD you found kickboxing! I’ve been taking total body conditioning classes at my gym and they make me feel just as sore as if I’d just run a half marathon. Which makes me so content with everything. I’m strange and sadistic. I know.

    Are you doing anything this weekend? Want to Momofuku it up? (Or we can go anywhere, really, but Momofuku comes to mind. I’ve always wanted to go to The Meatball Shop downtown. Any thoughts?)

    Reply

  5. Gabriela @ Une Vie Saine
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 07:38:50

    I love love love the new layout!! The header is so pretty.

    YAY for getting out of the hate spiral. We all have those days, I promise. What always helps me get out of them is to text a friend and ask them to tell me something good. Ninety percent of the time they give me a really silly answer (“Something good.” “I got a papercut and have an excuse to wear a Disney Princess bandaid.”) but it makes me smile and reminds me that I have people who care 🙂

    Hope you have a wonderful Tuesday love!! xoxo

    Reply

  6. Jessica @ The Process of Healing
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 10:28:14

    So first of all, WF does have the BEST muffins! My favorite is their vegan blueberry… it’s INCREDIBLE.

    As for your day, i’m so glad you turned it around! I have days like that too where just everything in the world seems to be going wrong. Usually talking to someone who makes me happy or being around those who make me laugh makes me feel better. You just have to pull yourself out!

    Reply

  7. Christine @ Grub, Sweat and Cheers
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 11:48:41

    That class sounds awesome! How great to be able to turn it all around and end the day feeling great.

    I’ve had so many days like that – just never had a name for it. I find that by getting up early and doing some yoga or meditating I’m able to stave it off…sometimes. Certainly not always. Like yesterday when I was a barking lunatic for most of the day. Some days I can snap myself out of it…some days I have to run, sleep or wine it out.

    And btw…I share your Diet Snapple love…

    Reply

  8. Mari
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 11:50:08

    Ohhh I am 29 (30 next week) and I am craving a REAL date! Getting dressed up and having a boy pick me up =)

    HA I love when I fall in love with a workout, they wont break our hearts haha

    Stay positive love!!!!!

    Reply

  9. Lauren @ BIOCHEMISTA
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 19:23:08

    Ahhh I haaaate when tiny things build up over time then I feel like I want to FLIP out!! I try to calm myself and remind myself that I’m being upset over the sum of many things rather than anything significant. I can usually talk myself out of my bad mood that way 🙂

    Reply

  10. Kate
    Jul 13, 2010 @ 20:42:41

    first off, i love the new layout and color scheme. it is funny how a few different graphics and colors can totally reframe your blog.

    and i am very glad you were able to turn your day around! exercise does that for me too. there is something about knowing how powerful and how much ass kicking ability i have that makes me much more chill.

    later lady!

    Reply

  11. Trackback: I Like Hitting Things. « Run. Write. Therapy. Life.

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