Wednesday, September 05, 2012
Week 5 of half marathon training!
Just finished my long run of week 4 which is 4.5 miles. Thought it was going to be a crappy run but started off strong and decided to push myself for a 1 mile time. I wish I would have started just a tad faster because I didn't really think about trying to run fast until a couple minutes into my run. Ended up doing my 1st mile in 10:08! I know I could do it under 10 minutes if I started better! This is huge.
Kept going and running and found it hard to keep my pace under 11:30. Until mile 3 and then I was hurting, but I would run for 6 mins, walk for 1 minute, ended up doing my 4.5 miles in 51:50. Last December I ran a very flat 4-mile race and got the same time. I'm making really great progress. And bought new running shoes last week! Big help!
One thing I think is making a huge difference is trail running. I mostly run in the forest trails, usually it's a big struggle, there are major hills and rocks and roots and just lots of obstacles, but it is seriously paying off. Today I ran on a paved path and just flew compared to the trail. On the trail, I can only run about 4 miles or less in the same time it took me today. It feels very hard and slow.
Now it's confession time. I have only been running twice a week!! My legs need the break because I push myself to the limit every time. I let my legs rest for a few days and voila, I'm faster and stronger next time. Maybe it's because I'm still in relatively short runs, but I do want to start running at least 3 times a week in the coming weeks of training! It's just awesome that I'm seeing such great progress, but I really think letting my legs rest a couple days after such hard runs is paying off big time.
unfortunately my weight is still the same. I have been over-eating a lot. I'm still 160 lbs. I hate that. I do really well during the week when I'm at work but then on the weekends, I tend to go nuts. I also drink way too much alcohol still.
Non-scale victories.. running faster.. I'll focus on that. Thanks for reading. Spark on.
Monday, June 04, 2012
I woke up this morning with the cold my daughter had last week. Ugh! Right now it's mostly a very sore throat and swollen glands. I even had dreams about having a cold and blogging about it on SP. So I thought I'd better do it and make my dreams come true, haha. It's lame because today was going to be my Long Run day.
Overall, I'm so happy I made goals this month because it really gives me something concrete to work toward and so far I've been doing OK. I have missed a few, but I learn from my mistakes and it shows me what I need to work on.
Walk/run with the dog every day:
I have a very happy dog right now.
8 glasses of water every day:
No hangovers at work:
Not a lot of opportunity yet to screw this one up.
Lights out by 11:30 on work nights:
There has only been 1 work night (last night) and I had lights out by 11:45. I always have trouble going to bed at a decent time on Sunday nights because I sleep in a lot on Sunday morning. If I had not made this goal, I probably would have stayed up until at least midnight.
Get to work by 8:30 AM:
6/1 I was late by 30 mins.
6/4 This morning because of my cold, after I dropped off my DD at school, I fell asleep until 11 AM! Maybe today doesn't really count, though, since I decided to stay home from work.
Run 3 times a week (2 short, 1 long):
6/1 - no run
6/2 - 2 mile trail run
6/3 - 30 min hike with several sprints
6/4 - caught a cold :(
Do 1 race this month:
I did some searches last night, and am thinking of doing the Freedom 5K in Vancouver, WA on 6/16.
Do 1 exercise class a week:
I have a plan to go to a kickboxing class with my friend KLOKTEFF on Wednesday. Even if she can't make it, I will still do it.
Write up a budget and file divorce papers this month:
I haven't even thought about it yet!
Fast food 1x per week:
I had Burger King on Saturday so I'm not allowed to have any more fast food this week.
Track food 5x per week:
I am already off my goal for the week.
6/1: I tracked most of the day until dinner when I ate at the Mongolian Grill and then drank a bunch of beer, so I don't know my total calorie consumption.
6/2: No tracking
6/3: I tracked my first meal of the day and then all hell broke loose with a Cincy chili feast and red velvet cake.
6/4: I will track all food today and stay in my calorie range!
Now I'm off to make a healthy breakfast and contemplate cleaning the house, which is a total disaster from this weekend. I finished playing the new Silent Hill Downpour game yesterday (while the rest of my family were also playing video games on other systems - we are a total gaming geek family). Compared to the other Silent Hill games, it was just so-so. I didn't like the ending I got (there are 6 different endings depending on how you play the game).
I also watched the first part of the HBO series Weight of the Nation everyone's been talking about. I am looking forward to watching the other parts. You can watch it for free on HBO's website: theweightofthenation.hbo.com/films/m
Hope everyone had a good weekend! Let's have an active week!!
Friday, June 01, 2012
Can you believe I've been on SP for 2.5 years, and I have never actually written down any goals? I've had vague goals, such as lose 3 pounds in a month, or exercise 5 times a week, but they were always just things I said to myself, and nothing I ever wrote down, or measured, or rated myself on and checked up on to make sure I was still on track. Obviously this method has not been working very well for me. I lost 10 lbs in my first 4 months on SP and have basically been stagnant since then. I have met a lot of non-scale victories, however, and I have never given up. But now I think after all this time I am finally ready to set some measurable goals!!
1. Run 3 times a week. Currently I usually run once or twice a week and am not able to improve my running distance and speed this way. My average speed is 12 min/mile and my long run distance is 3.5 to 4 miles. I am going to start this week with 2 short runs (I already did one on Tuesday) and a long run of 4 miles, and increase the long run by .25 mile each week.
2. Go to an exercise class 1x per week. I need to branch out and do more cross-training. I get really lazy with my exercise and just run, and do nothing else most of the time. I need to break out of my rut, and try out some new things.
3. Take my dog for at least 1 walk or run every day, even if it's just around the block. My poor dog. She doesn't get enough exercise. I take her running after work if I feel like it, but most days she just ambles around the back yard.
4. Run at least 1 race this month. I love them and they keep me motivated to continue improving my running.
5. Drink 8 glasses of water each day. If I don't make this a goal, I will slack off on it and go all day only drinking 3 glasses of water, which has all sorts of consequences which I can actually feel, such as low energy, depression, and suffering exercise.
1. Track food 5x a week. I am already good about getting plenty of fruit and veggies, but if I don't track, I get out of my calorie range and eat things I shouldn't.
2. Fast food only 1x per week. Fast food is my craving. Some people crave ice cream or sweets. For me it is Burger King whoppers and Taco Bell. Sometimes I eat at these places twice in one day. But it's usually because of work/life goal #3 below. I am giving myself 1 time a week to eat a fast food meal because I believe in moderation and it's better than I'm doing now.
1. Lights out by 11:30 PM on weeknights. Sometimes I stay up so late, like midnight or 1 am on nights before work, and end up coming in late several times a week! I got a ding about this on my last annual review last week, and it needs to stop now. This goal goes with the next one which is a challenge of its own...
2. Get to work by 8:30 AM. I really struggle with this. Part of it is because of drinking too much alcohol and/or staying up too late. And part of it is just because I get busy puttering around the house and lose track of time, or because my SO wants me to drive him to work (long, frustrating story).
3. No Hangovers at Work. This is huge for me. It's usually when I am up watching movies and drinking heavily with my SO until 1 am that I am unproductive at work with a hangover. He begs me to drink with him over and over until I cave (it happened on Tuesday). I hate it and I'm worth more than that. BTW I did have a few drinks Tuesday because he would just not shut up about it, but I did well and only had a few drinks and have not had a hangover all week.
4. Write up a budget and make a plan to stick to it. I have basically been flying by the seat of my pants when it comes to my money. I check my account sometimes. I pay my bills. I go out to eat. I drink a lot of beer. I go to bars. And then at the end of the month I am always surprised when I'm struggling to pay rent and sometimes I even have to borrow money from my Ex! I always pay him back but it's ridiculous. I'm not poor by any means. I make decent money. I just don't manage it well.
5. File my divorce papers. Um... I've been separated for over 6 years. My ex and I are good friends but we both agree it's time to get the divorce thing over with. We keep putting it off and pretending it's not out there looming over us. So I am making it a goal to tackle it this month.
Maybe I will revise this blog with cute emoticons and nice formatting but this is all I can muster right now. I'm at work and need to get some things done!!
Oh, and I already messed up one goal this morning. I didn't make it to work until 9:00! I'm going to assign points to each of my goals and rewards for myself depending on the number of points I get, but I'm too busy to do that right now, so I'll mull over it and post another blog with that. I would be really surprised if anyone actually read this whole thing, but if you did, thanks!
I'm not going to give myself any weight-related goals this month. I think everything I have to tackle in life right now is more important than a weight goal and maybe weight loss will follow when I stick to my goals. We will see!
Starting weight: 158.5
Have not taken measurements.
Cheers and have a great day!
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
I'm in a dilemma about my appearance.
Am I fat or not? I can't decide.
On the one hand, I was most happy with my appearance when I was in the 125 - 130 lb range. I looked good in pictures and felt pretty. Men hit on me. I knew I was attractive.
I'm now 25 lbs heavier than that. I feel the extra weight mostly around my middle when I am sitting down. My boobs are bigger. My jean size is bigger. But overall, I still feel attractive. I have cleavage now. I am a runner now! I am curvalicious.
When I look in the mirror, I feel like I look hot. There are some things I'm not happy about, but even at 130 lbs there were things I wasn't happy about. As before, I mainly feel that I have a sexy bod. My BF tells me I have a sexy bod constantly. His opinion is really the only one that matters, right?
The problem is when I have pictures taken of me. Not the kind where I am standing in front of the mirror posing. The kind where someone commands you to stand next to the skinny person and say cheese. Or the kind where you are 2 hours into a race and the photographer snaps a shot. There is my huge gut, there are my huge arms, and OMG is that cellulite on my ARMS? Holy crap, my face is fat! Look at that double chin! The gut, the rolls!
I never post these pictures on SP because I'm ashamed of them. They remind me that I'm not attractive, I'm not fit, I'm not entirely healthy, I'm not sexy. I hide them away where I can't see them so I don't feel like a failure, like I'm not worthy to be on SP because 3 years into my journey I've only lost 10 lbs.
The mirror lies to me. So does my BF. They tell me I am so sexy and beautiful, but pictures tell a totally different story. Pictures show me that I'm a wide load, too fat, especially standing next to normal people.
So I constantly feel stuck in this cycle of self-love and self-loathing.
I am always trying to convince myself that it's the mirror that holds the truth, and the pictures are the ones lying, but that's impossible, right?
I want to be happy with myself the way I am, feeling the way I feel, but I DO NOT want to be ashamed of myself every time I see a photo!
This is the main reason I want to lose weight! I am tired of feeling ashamed of how I look in photos! Even though throughout the day, for several days in a row, I am happy with my appearance and the way my clothes fit. As soon as someone snaps another photo I am reminded of my disgusting fat!
Most recently, I have seen photos of myself at the zoo with my daughter (HUGE, cellulite arm), photos of myself in the triathlon (giant body, lots of rolls). Just want to look normal in photos...
So I struggle on...
Friday, September 16, 2011
So, the race report is only 2 months late! Haha
Honestly, I did hardly anything to train for this triathlon. My training consisted of:
Running once or twice a week for a couple miles
A month before the tri, I started using a personal trainer for ST twice a week
Exercise bike one or twice a week for about a month before the tri (30 mins)
Rode my real bike maybe 3 times, going 4 or 5 miles each time
My sister is the athletic one. She and I signed up for the race together (she actually did the Duathlon). We don't get to see each other often because she lives in Seattle and I'm in Portland. The race was on her birthday! So that was part of the excitement. 4 weeks before the event, I had not really trained and I was stressing out about it big time. I didn't want to let my sis down, but I was worried about injuring myself or just plain not being able to finish! I called and told her I didn't think I would be able to do it. She talked me into not backing out, and I'm so glad she did. Seriously, the only reason I agreed not to drop out of it was because it was her birthday and I knew how disappointed she would be! There's no way I can let her down! So that's the point I decided I better buckle down, and at least try to do the best I could with the time I had left, telling myself even if I don't finish, at least I gave it a "tri!" lol.
Actually, the event I signed up for was called the "Tri it" - where the swimming portion is only 1/4 mile instead of the 1/2 mile of the sprint tri. I didn't even practice swimming because I figured I had that portion in the bag... I mean it's only once around the track, right? ... boy was I wrong!
Skipping ahead... the morning of the race is here!
My event started at 8:30 AM and sis's started at 8. By 6 am we were on the road. It takes over an hour to get to the lake from my house. The weather was good. It was sunny and at 8 in the morning about 60 degrees outside. I was so nervous! It's the only race I've done that I was actually nervous for. So on our way to the event, we got a starbucks coffee - we both need strong coffee to wake up - and a starbucks Power Protein plate. I just love those things - you get an egg, peanut butter with whole grain biscuit, fruit and a slice of cheese. We ate roughly 1.5 hours before my race start, and really it was perfect. I didn't get nauseous or anything the whole time.
Finally we get to the lake. I LOVE the excitement surrounding races, all the race numbers, people happy and athletic and loving life, inspiration all around. It was a beautiful morning. We park and unhook our bikes. I'm looking around at all the other athletes and bicycles and feel SO out of place. Everywhere I look, there are serious racing bikes and bullet helmets and the most athletic people I've ever seen in real life. This was serious! And it made me feel very fat and out of shape, and my bike is a joke! I have a Trek mountain bike worth about 100 bucks and it's very slow. On a good downhill I can probably get it up to 20 MPH, haha. On a regular flat, I can go around 10 to 12 mph, and on an uphill, watch out baby, I'm a speed demon at 3 mph. In any case, I was here and there was no backing out now... believe me I seriously considered it.
We walked our bikes to the starting racks. Practicing my transition was something I didn't do before the race either. I figured since this was my first time, I was just going to take it slow and do what I needed to do. My main goal was just to finish the dang thing! So I put my childish bike on the rack among all the shiny expensive ones, lay out my clothes and shoes for after the swim, and head down to the starting line area for the swimming leg. I had my swimsuit on under my street clothes and had planned to just strip right before jumping in the water... well, that plan changed... I am looking all around me and nearly everyone is wearing a wetsuit! I'm kicking myself for not renting one. Here I was, thinking it's summer and it will be warm, yeah well not at 8AM! I decide at the last minute there is NO WAY I'm wearing my swimsuit for the swimming portion. First of all self-consciousness about my body, second of all a little more warmth. I had an extra athletic shirt, so I ended up wearing that over my sports bra and then put on my running pants. I felt a little better about swimming in this, and my new plan after that was to change my shirt to the one with the race number on it after the swim, but just let my pants air dry. It worked out fine for my purposes, it's not like the extra air resistance from having wet pants while riding my bike was going to make a difference!
Our little novice tri group was the last to get in the water so we wouldn't get in the way of the real triathletes! There were about 15 of us in this event. We were all looking at each other like, What the heck did we get ourselves into?! Finally, they announced our wave and we jumped in the water. COLD! Get ready , set, go! Ahhhh! So nervous!! I took off, it felt really weird to swim in my clothes, I started swimming freestyle and within 1 minute it was evident that I was NOT ready for this! I started gasping for air, the water kept getting in my nose and mouth, I could not get enough air! I did the breast stroke for a minute or so and everyone was passing me! I was exhausted and I had barely started. Finally after the initial craziness of everyone taking off at once, I ended up 3rd to last among our little group, and the only people behind me were a couple guys who were very overweight! I was not feeling very confident. I had to switch to swimming on my back for the rest of the distance, I was breathing very hard, and it was a much longer distance than I anticipated. The water temperature wasn't bothering me anymore, at least! I just had to keep telling myself to just kick my legs, keep going, don't give up, kick, kick, kick. I felt kind of humiliated that I couldn't swim normally. Finally, the end was in sight. I reached the point where I could stand up again and pulled myself out of the water. My legs were already tired and I was breathing hard. The path up to the transition, where I should have been running, I had to walk and catch my breath! I got to my bike, put on my gear, stashed some sport beans in my cleavage and off I went (isn't your bra just the best place to put things?!). I had to kind of watch a few people to see how they did it. Did they ride their bike from transition to bike start or walk it? You weren't allowed to ride to the bike start. You had to run with your bike until this certain point called the bike mount area, so after I figured that out, I started off. I think my transition was like 6 minutes from swim to bike!!
Finally, I hop on my bike and the very first thing you have to do is ride up a big hill! I tried to get a little momentum but there wasn't really time, so right off the bat about 100 people are passing me, with their fancy gear and ripped bodies. Most of the people passing me are the olympic length triathletes that have to go around the lake twice. So they have already gone around once and are on their second lap. This was basically the overall theme of my one very slow lap (12.5 miles) around the lake. People passing me! The ride was brutal. I was determined not to walk my bike if I could help it, so I utilized all the gears on my bike. It was one giant hill after another, way way up, then way way down, with every giant hill I thought, this surely must be the last one, but oh, was I wrong! I later learned this is one of the most challenging bike courses in the US. Some people were very encouraging as they passed me, saying good job, etc. as I am hauling my overweight frame at 3mph uphill, most were very serious and would buzz past me as if to say, What the hell are you doing in this race, get off the road! I felt sooo out of place! I just kept going, my legs burning, sometimes going so slow I felt like I wasn't even moving. One guy, as I'm about 1/3 of the way through it, passed me and said, "Nice day for a bike ride, huh?" in a condescending tone as he buzzed me. I was trying my hardest and I almost started crying! I realized I really have no place being here! I couldn't wait until it was over. I just kept going though, kept pumping my legs. Shortly after that, was the biggest hill yet. For the first time, I had to get off my bike and take a breather. I drank some water, took a couple minutes to rest, then got back on and tackled the hill. As I'm working my way up, a grey-haired, very fit woman passed me going pretty fast. I forgot to mention earlier that the race volunteers write your age on the back of everyone's legs. The number I saw on this woman's leg: 71!! A little later on, I was struggling with yet another hill, and I had reached the point where the 10k runners were doing their thing on the other side of the road. The runners were passing me as I was riding my bike! I would go down a hill and pass the same runner, then later he would pass me again as I was going up a hill. So I was biking slower than a runner doing his final 10k run. Nice.... Finally, finally the end was in sight. They were taking pictures on a part of the road that was mercifully downhill, so you could bomb down the hill and pretend you were doing that the whole time, haha! I look much bigger in my pictures than I feel like I do in real life or in the mirror, I have a very warped perception of myself. More on that in a different blog. I finally reached the run transition! People were clapping and cheering, that felt good. And I had accomplished my goal of riding my bike the whole way, not walking it, and couldn't believe I actually finished because the farthest I have ridden my bike in the past was 5 miles!
Now to the run transition. From here I felt so much relief. I knew that if I could just get to this point and was still in the game, heck I could just walk the 5k if I needed to, but now I knew I would actually finish. I started off at a trot and ran as far as I could. I was totally exhausted. After just a few minutes, an old injury in my knee flared up. tangent.. Back several months ago, I was walking through a parking lot with a load of books in my hands, it was dark outside and I didn't see the pothole. I stepped into it, twisted my ankle, landed HARD on my knee and almost passed out from the pain. Oh, my, gawd it hurt so bad. I was nauseous for 15 minutes and sure I had broken my kneecap. I went and got an xray the next day. No break. However, I could not bend my knee normally anymore. I wasn't able to put very much weight on it for 2 months. This was the main reason I was derailed from my training. It happened 2 weeks after I signed up for the race! I was so discouraged. By the time the tri rolled around, it was mostly healed and only flared up occasionally. Now here I was nearing the end, and my knee hurt too bad to run on it. I mostly walked the last two miles because I didn't want to risk a lasting injury. I was happy, though. I was proud of myself, despite the fact that I was one of the most out-of-shape people. It was a beautiful day, I relished the race atmosphere, and as I ran in to the end, I found my sis and gave her a big hug and felt the most amazing feeling of accomplishment I have ever felt in my entire life!
We stayed around for the lunch and medal ceremony. I got a medal for 3rd place in my age group. I was so excited!!
I later found out there were only 3 people IN my age group for my event... and I had come in nearly last place... but I finished... and proved to myself that I can do so much more than I knew I was capable of. What an unforgettable experience!
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