I've been toggling back and forth on this one screen for 1 hour and 39 minutes as I develop my tentative race calendar for 2018. For the last four years, I conquered fears in the most extreme ways. Perhaps you think I'm being melodramatic; I wish I was telling a lie. Just to give you an idea of my history of shenanigans, I will start from the beginning of my fucktardism and then it'll make sense on why I'm babysitting the screen that I'm on right now:
The Running Fat Chef's History of Ridiculous Shit
1. I cut off my hair because pregnancy told me so. Circa December 2006 (or was that January 2007)
What's the big deal? Right? Nah honey. Between pregnancy hormones and being scared of any chemicals harming my baby, I decided to chop all of my hair away. Fortunately, it was the best decision that I made for my hair life. It turned into this after giving birth to my bad ass deluxe.
2. Went into culinary school thanks to Facebook and a killer best friend who wouldn't take no for an answer.
It was a joke...with a bit of truth. "Who want to fund my culinary education?" Ha, right? Nah. I went on a tour of a culinary school that I was interested in and I thought it would remain a dream. 2008 was a terrible year that gave everyone le boot during the recession. Social work is an over-saturated field, leaving me going from 40 - 70K yearly to zilch. What's a girl to do? Make fancy ass dishes and bake for her friends and family. Somehow, my best friend translated this into "take your ass back to school and finish." Hey, no pressure...I only quit every single thing that I touched until that point so why not? Next thing I knew, I pushed through with every ailment under the sun: Scarlet Fever, dysentery, a cancer scare and 5 stints of food poisoning. No, I'm not making this up. Next thing I knew, I spoke at my graduation. Go figure?
3. Signed up for my first half marathon despite never signing up for a race a day in my goddamn life (aside from the ice cream man).
So my friend Rob signed up for a half marathon and for some reason, I said "Shit, me too." Before I knew it, I was enrolled in the Michelob Half Marathon in Corona, NY despite never running a 5K or anything else ever. Seem like a good idea at the time but now you know how I got into running. Really, these are all true stories here.
4. Let's Fast Forward: Jumping out of perfectly good airplanes because I'm scared to fly in one. Did I mention that I have a fear of heights? I think this is August 2014.
Yeah...I'mma leave this here. So I went through each of the following emotions:
5. Signed up for my first full marathon and ran a half marathon less than 24 hours later. Yeah, beat my ass for this.
The NYC Marathon was supposed to be my first marathon BUT trigger fingers made me excited and I signed up for the March 2015 Rock and Roll DC Marathon. But guess what kids? I already signed up for the NYC Half a month or so before it. So guess who had severe lactic acid after completing both runs? MEEEEE!!! And yes, I dressed up as a superhero. It's kinda my thing.
6. I'm a glutton for punishment so why not do a 60K in the same year as my first two marathons, right?
Same shirt. Different hell. Yup. 37.29 miles in Central Park makes you lose every ounce of your soul. I was at mile 18.50 at this point. Yes, I hated everyone by this point. It was only the half way point. Only took 9 hours, 47 minutes and 22 seconds to complete.
But wait...I started my first day of work in a bakery the very next day. Guess who was sore...again!
7. I can't dance so why not try pole dancing and do a showcase...even though you're training for six events in a two month period.
I'm sure there's a disorder for things like this. Despite how crazy this looks and sound, I don't regret being this impulsive. Nevertheless, I know this is extreme as fuck.
I signed up for pole dancing classes in 2015 and loved it. Being financially malnourished, it took me a full year to come back to class. I stuck with it for so long that I impulsively signed up for a pole dancing showcase right in the middle of my marathon and Spartan training. In 2016, I completed my Foxy Fitness and Pole Dancing Showcase. A month later, I completed the Bank of America Chicago Marathon and four Spartan Race--two beasts and two supers at 8 - 14 miles each. In November, I completed the NYC Marathon and told myself I would never do something this insane again.
8. I really want to go on a dedicated hike so why not do that on New Year's Day...with Mirna Valerio.
I had no idea that we would be great friends but yeah, that happened. I took a chance, gave her a friend request back in 2016 and next thing I know, she offered to break my hiking virginity. We went to Anthony's Nose on New Year's Day in 2017. Couldn't have asked for a better person but I'm not gonna lie, I was star struck considering it was the first day that I was meeting this woman. She's been my unofficial mentor ever since.
9. Hey, Is the Spartan Ultra Beast really that bad...and why not drag along a friend who never ran a half marathon in his life.
Long story short, despite the training, we DNF'ed the fuck out of that course. What's an Ultra Beast? The Spartan Race's sadistic obstacle-course race over 26.2 miles in the woods. We were both terribly injured around mile 12 and I sprained my ankle over 4 times on that course starting at 1 1/2 miles in. We tried. We failed and succeeded. Who signs up for something this insane?! Shout out to Rayne for trying this crazy shit with me. He was in pain ALL NIGHT. No bullshit, I actually felt terrible that he joined this course with me not knowing how bad endurance courses of this level can be. Uhhh, thanks bestie?
10. Signed up for my first trail marathon...on one of the most extreme courses on the east coast.
Went for my first trail marathon with Mirna. That's cool...except for the fact that I chose the North Face Endurance Challenge as a first timer. Oh, I DNFed the fuck out of that by the way. There's a really epic, long story behind this. Let's just say that the mountain was disrespectful as shit and I don't think anyone should choose the North Face Endurance Challenge as their first trail marathon unless you're cat piss crazy like me.
So You Put Up All of This...Why?
And so...it's now 2 hours, 16 minutes and I really wish I had 130.00 to spare in my account while I have this brave pill. Why?
I think I want to sign up for my first triathlon: The New Jersey State Triathlon. It's not as crazy as an Ironman but it's a goal on my bucket list. Here's the issue: I can't swim and I'm exceptionally terrified of drowning. Here's what I learned about myself over the last 4+ years: I'm extreme as fuck and I thrive under pressure. Maybe if I pay for this race, I'll actually commit to my swimming lessons that I start on Saturday. Fuck what you heard...I'm cheap as hell. I splurge on food and trips but you'll never catch me dropping a cool thousand dollars at a clothing store without buyer's remorse. I'm a parent and have a family to maintain. In turn, I am dancing on this screen wondering if this will push me to being a better athlete. My only saving grace at this very moment is that I'm broke (and that's me being honest as shit).
Will this be the year of the triathlon? It's only January 7th. I still have 350+ days to go in this year. This race is in July 2018. Do I realistically have enough time to train for something like this? Pray for my marbles guys. Every time I start thinking like this, it's only a matter of time before I do it. Should I conquer a fear in this manner or nah? My success record is obviously listed above, failures and all.
Latoya Shauntay Snell
For my pretentious ass bio, check out the about me page but for anyone interested in who I really am, make me a good meal at your house and I'll tell you a dope ass story.
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