Sunday, October 20, 2013

Leaving The Land of The Rising Sun

We are still awaiting our orders to return back to the United States.  If all goes as planned, we should be home a little before Christmas.....just in time to celebrate with family and friends we haven't seen since we left on our adventure back in 2010.  

I was warned before I moved to Japan that I wouldn't want to leave there when it was time to return home. At that time, I really didn't understand what that meant, but now I get it.  While I'll be happy to be able to read signs easily, order off a menu, get certain food ingredients at the local market, re-connect with those I love, etc. I will certainly miss this country, the Japanese people, the friends and family I've met/gained here, the cuteness, amazing customer service even at the local 7-Eleven, and how I've been able to put my worries about safely on the back-burner here.  I basically have been living in a Fantasy land on this great, but extended Asian vacation.

Last weekend I came across a very moving and fitting article (see below) in our favorite Ex-pat magazine.  I felt as if the article had my name written all over it, so I decided to scan it.  I'm trying to prepare myself, and those around me (sorry)  for the reverse culture shock that will likely occur.  I have a plan to combat and work through the culture shock, but I welcome any tips or strategies for dealing with the change.   

Here are some of the reasons me, and others love Japan.  Its been circulating around social media this week, so some of you may have already read it.

I'm grateful that we had this opportunity and I look forward to telling everyone back at home about our time here. :)

Sunday, October 6, 2013

CrossFit Throwdowns and More Tasty Recipes

In July, and just last weekend, I participated in CrossFit Throwdowns.  Our group, along with many others CrossFit groups competed in two workouts (WODs).  There were over 50+ people competing in the throwdown in either the prescribed weigh or scaled (me) divisions.  This event was pretty scary the first time, but the experience was great.  I realized that I needed to work on so many basic skills.  These realizations are good because its given me a better focus and direction with my CrossFit goals.   Last weekend, I wasn't as nervous as before because I knew what to expect, and that I would just try to do my best.  I also was able to have a great cheering section and a couple PR's (personal record) on my weights.  I love my group and CrossFit because the people you meet are like-minded, positive, and fun to be around. 

Here is the scaled second WOD from last weekend:

5RFT (5 rounds for time)  8 min max
5 Snatches
10 butterfly sit ups
15 air squats

Jerk Ladder was 1st WOD.
All the wonderful participants!

More Tasty Recipes

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Races in Japan

Since Japanese are active people, its no surprise that popular races found stateside are making their way across the Pacific.  I've had the opportunity to participate in a couple of these races this year.  They are more for fun, rather than for the competitive at heart.

Warrior Dash

This year, there will be two locations for this 4 mile obstacle course race.  The one I participated in in June was held a couple hours from Yokosuka in the Sagimahara Pleasure Forest.  It was hot, humid, and a pretty decent hilly trail.  Not too easy; not too hard.  What I liked most (aside from the complimentary beer at the end) was that they had modified obstacles throughout most of the course.  Also, if one chose to do go through the mud pit at the end, there were hoses nearby to rinse off and changing areas.  Here's more information about the race held in November:  OR

The Color Run
The Color Run came to Yokosuka Base on 4 July.  Dressed in white shirts, competitors ran the 4 mile flat course welcomed by a  multitude of powdered color every mile.  The day was humid and there was a lot of moisture in the air.  All-in-all, the run was fun one to do to ring in Independence Day!

Competitive Races in Japan
  • Tokyo Marathon - registration is usually around August, and there is a lottery to get in.  Its becoming more and more difficult for people to make the cut.
  • Seaside Marathon in Yokosuka- 1/2 or full marathon held in November.  I heard the race was closed in a day.  There's also a cut-off time for this race.
  • Mount Fuji Marathon  also known as Lake Kawaguchi Marathon.  Held in November, this is a very scenic and popular race for runners.  Here's their website: