Friday, August 24, 2012
And it's getting more and more difficult to maintain my focus. I did NOT want to workout this morning. I didn't want to swim or run or walk or lift or do anything. I'm sore. I'm tired. I wanted to sleep. But I went anyhow and got in 40 minutes of swim workout I got from swimplan.com.
I can't believe there's only one week left until September! Crazy, right?! Where did the time go? I have to say I'm getting a bit nervous and antsy because I know September 1st will be the day of truth as far as my weigh-in is concerned. I also want to take measurements, pictures, and a body fat % so I have a more full picture of what my body has been doing. I would also like to schedule a trip to my list of stores I frequent every few months to try on the next size down in pants. We shall see...
So, with a week left, how close am I to hitting my goals? What do I have to do this week to make it happen (maybe this will help me maintain focus because the only thing rolling through my head is, "Please can we take a week off?! PLEASE!?")?
? / 5-6 pounds
682 / 888 minutes
That's 206 minutes left, or almost 7 30 minute workouts.
See, I can't take a week off. There's still work to do.
Plan for the Week:
Saturday - Walk (30m) (I've missed every one this month, I need to do ONE)
Sunday - Yoga (20m)
Monday - Swim Workout (40m)
Tuesday - Lift or Bike Workout (30m)
Wednesday - Swim Workout (40m)
Thursday - Lift or Bike Workout (30m)
Friday - Swim Workout (40m)
That's 230 minutes so I need to shoot for a perfect week or I'll be scrambling there at the end.
Eat more Paleo.
I have been doing that most of the month save for the last few days. Of course I've also had a headache the last few days, and woke up this morning with a horrible headache. Uhm..duh! Time for me to recommit. It's just 7 days, for crying out loud!
As far as my calories are concerned - I have no clue where I'm at. I decided to stop logging for this month because I needed a mental break. It's one thing that will probably need to come back next month, just so I know where I'm at right now. Still, I think I do pretty well with the food/amounts I've been eating.
I'm also going to work on keeping my "Weekend Projects" going around the house.
HA! That didn't happen. Last weekend I spent most of Saturday doing as little as I possibly could because I needed the rest. I've been mentally strained lately, so it's been a little rough going. I would love to get something done this weekend, but with how exhausted I feel right now I can't make any promises other than to do laundry because I know we need it done. I'm sure a big part of this was the fact that not only have my weekends been shortened by football (as I had to go back to a week of 5 8-hour shifts instead of 4 10-hour shifts), but they were shortened even more starting last week as we did our first scrimmage on Sunday. I spent almost the entire day Sunday at the field and being in the sun that long really wears me out. This Sunday they have their first game. We'll see how that goes, but it means another long drive and at least 2 hours sitting in the sun, followed by a long drive home. I'll have to sort out packing food for there/back and at the game. I may make my almost 13-year-old come with me because it's been hell going to these things by myself. I know he hates it, but maybe he could give me just a few freebies this year since Hubs doesn't even know if he'll be able to attend any of the games.
Also, I want to try to keep up my off-site blog.
That I have been doing. It's been a little rough lately because this week has seen some horrible flops in the food department and some lackluster performances/wimp-outs by me. I'm about to write my Friday Food Review and...well, I'm not looking forward to it. I'm almost embarrased by the sad state of our meals this week. :/
So...not too bad. I'll need to work to get there. As much as I want to take the next week off from working out, I really can't afford it right now. This could potentially be a monumental weigh-in for me and if I crap out now I'll have to evaluate again why I seem to sabotage myself each and every time I get this close.
Still no set plans for September, but I am taking all your suggestions under advisement. Today was the first day I wondered if I might like a little time away from the pool or not, but I haven't decided either way. Maybe next week will be more telling. Just like running, swimmers can have an off day and even though I performed well this morning, I felt off all throughout my swim.
Speaking of my swim...I've been struggling with what to do now that I can swim a mile straight. Do I just keep doing that over and over again? Well, I mean, I could. Or I could set myself up with some swim workouts that might help me with form and speed and technique. This morning the thought of swimming 50 minutes without stopping made me want to rip out my insides, so I opted for the second option. It wasn't any easier, but at least it was a little more interesting.
I got the workout when I signed up for swimplan.com. It's a 14-day trial so I need to get as much from them as I can before that period ends. Of course, my work likes to pan "sports" sites so I can't get on it here to get a new workout or anything. *facepalm* I'm on my work's wellness program with the insurance company and, yet, I can't look up exercises online to get...well...WELL! *SMH* Anyhow, here's the workout if anyone is interested. (Let me know if you have a 25yard/meter pool as that is how the original is set up. I had to tweak it for my 20 yard pool, which the site does not recognize. *rolls eyes*)
2 x 100 - Freestyle Swim - steady pace, rest 0:20/100yd
Build Up (repeat 2 times)*
1 x 20 Freestyle Swim, rest 0:10/20yd
1 x 20 Streamline Kicking, rest 0:10/20yd
1 x 20 Freestyle Swim, rest 0:10/20yd
1 x 20 Single Arm (arm out front) 6 x left, 6 x right, 6 x full stroke, rest 0:10/20yd
1 x 20 Freestyle Swim, rest 0:10/20yd
10 x 60 Freestyle Swim, target pace time 01:30/60yd, rest 0:20/60yd
5 x 20 Easy Any Stroke, rest 0:10/20yd
Total Distance: 1100 yards
Time: just under 40 minutes
Calories Burned: 377, 35% from fat
Avg HR: 125
Max HR: 154
It was hard to set a pace for myself for each lap. The swimplan laid out 12 x 50 with a pace of 1:15 per 50, so I thought 1:30 for 60 yards wasn't too bad and I shot for that and made it almost on the nose each time. It really boosted up my HR, but just 20 seconds resting after brought it back down to the 120s before I was off again. Not bad, I think.
Also, the streamline kick, done without a kickboard mind you is super hard and I nearly swallowed the pool during my first attempt at the stroke drill. *lol* But, I caught on and completed it. I was a little upset as they said it would take 45 minutes and I took 40 with an extra pool length tacked on that I didn't count (I practiced my dolphin kick a bit...it still sucks) and a bit of stretching out a cramp at the end before I shut my HRM down (about 30 seconds after I stopped swimming).
Also, "repeat 2 times" does not make as much sense as anyone thinks it does. I mean, you go through it once, and then you 'repeat'...so do you 'repeat' it twice and do it a total of three times?! *lol* English major it me coming out for a fight. Anyhow, you do the build up section twice in a row, in case you were wondering.
Hope everyone is having fun. Going to spend some time trying to put together my food blog at the other site...but right now I'm just trying not to fall asleep. *lol* I'll let you know when it's up, but it likely won't be all that great. *shudders to think of some of the food they had this week*
Thursday, August 23, 2012
So...I didn't go to the gym this morning. And I won't be going later. Thankfully, I can say that this was done on purpose. My shoulders are beyond sore today. I need to give them a day to rest before I put them through any more punishment. Let it be known that this August I have learned how to listen to my body better and I think it's paying off. Just yesterday I remarked that my butt seemed smaller. The shirt that was tight just a month ago fits me perfectly now. The pants that used to be a pain to get zipped are starting to get a bit baggy in the bum area. And I peeked at the scale this morning with fear in my throat and got a bit of a happy surprise (nothing official until September 1st, though, but let's just say it would allow me to mark off a few of my "goals" on my front page).
Today the plan is to ice and drink a ton of water. Last night after work I wasn't feeling quite myself. I've been having a lot of this lately as I try to adjust and figure out who the hell I am and what I really want. I went home and lay down on the bed while messaging Hubs...and then I woke up about 30 minutes later, sent him an almost incoherent message, and passed out again for a while longer. Around 7pm, I got up, changed out of my work clothes and into regular people's clothes, and headed down to town to meet up with him. I don't know why...I just had to get out of the house. There were leftovers for the kids in the fridge, I knew. They could stand one night where I didn't cater to them.
I ended up at Hubs' work, where I waited the last hour with him until he got off. Then we headed over to the Mexican restaurant where I broke all the rules but got some amazing homemade chorizo. Afterward, we headed to the store to buy Ethan an alarm clock and then I headed home where I crashed on the couch.
I felt like a sloth yesterday.
I felt lazy and slow and stupid.
And 6:30am was so early, somehow I didn't even realize that it was the same day I had swam a mile straight and I didn't need to feel that way.
I went to bed feeling really sore in my shoulders. My arms kept falling asleep and I was having terrible dreams. I woke up as Hubs was coming to bed and I finally rested when he was next to me. When the alarm went off at 4:30am, I got up, reset it for later, and went back to sleep.
Even when I have "failed" this month, for the most part I've done it consciously and without shame or guilt. And that already makes me feel a lot better.
I'm stressing over my plan for next month. I don't know where to go with my training. I'm running out of food ideas and my budgeting isn't working right yet. And I don't want to end August with a win and then go into September lost, so that's probably what happened to my head yesterday.
Off to ice my shoulders.
Off to drink a ton of water (bloated from the gluten and dairy I had last night...and tons and tons of sodium).
Off to try to settle my head as I find a plan.
Fall is coming.
There is reason to rejoice.
If I can sort out the whens and wheres and hows, I can sail through September and have myself a blast.
Just gotta sort it out in my head and then put it down on paper.
What are you guys all doing for training this fall? Got any ideas to help me along? I want to keep swimming. I love it. But I don't want to push this like I did the running and really injure my shoulders. I really want to run again, and I've been thinking of learning the taping techniques for my PF foot so that I can make small strides in that direction. And part of me wants to steal Hubs' bike and start getting some use out of that. But I'm scared I won't be able to do it...and the roads we live on aren't exactly helpful for those relearning.
Anyone got a directional sign I can borrow?!
Wednesday, August 22, 2012
I did it. One mile. 44 laps. 88 touches. 50 minutes of straight swimming without so much as a break to fix my foggy goggles. People came in and out of the pool and I kept on pushing through. And I honestly worried that I wouldn't be able to do it today.
My shoulder started hurting last night. No, not the one that hurt last Friday when I had to give up my attempt at my first mile, but the other one. "Oh, great!" I thought. "Here we go again!" Thankfully, it didn't cause me much trouble in the water.
I almost skipped going to the gym this morning. I went to bed late last night and had a bit of trouble getting up when the alarm went off...and it went off 4 times after I hit snooze again and again... But I got up eventually. Late. Running behind.
"Whatever. Just go."
I went. I put on my suit and my HRM and hopped in the shower to water myself before hitting the pool. I stretched my arms, swinging them around like mad, rotating my shoulders to get them loose. Yes, I fully believe that I am Michael Phelps or Dana Torres when I'm about to step into the YWCA pool in lil 'ole West Virginia. I'm not, but who has to know that?
Unlike running, there's not much time to think under the water. When I run, the movement of my feet is second nature. My phone tracks my mileage and keeps me updated and the only concern I have is not falling. So my mind tends to prattle off my worries and concerns for the day. Sometimes it can be a great thing - I can settle my nerves with a run. Other times, I spend the entire run trying not to cry or whine (and sometimes I do both). Sometimes I have too much time on my runs to think about how much it hurts, how bad it feels, how hard it is, and how much I want to give up. And the mental struggle to push through has been a great exercise in mental toughness for me.
But under the water, things are completely different.
I went into this thinking it was like running. I was training in the pool like I trained for 5ks, sure. But I was going about the mental aspect of it all wrong. This was water. So many things must work in tandem for it to work correctly. I needed to focus my breathing. I needed to keep my head low. I needed to engage my core to keep my body in line, but not tense up because a good stroke is about a relaxed body. I needed to keep kicking. Not big, wild kicks, but small and controlled kicks from the knees down. I needed to maintain a long stroke and reach through at the top. I had to pull the water back while I twisted my body from one side to the other, allowing my arm to extend beside me and helping me to move through the water. I needed to tap the wall with my hand, then twist my legs around using a sort of tuck motion, turn my torso and push off the wall as I extended my arms above my head just under the water. Each step was important. Leave any one out and you go from a smooth swim to a sloppy mess.
I'm not a perfect swimmer. I get extremely sloppy sometimes, especially when I'm tired. There is a time or two where I inevitably miss my breath and take in some water and have to come up early to cough it out for a second. I lose focus sometimes. It tends to happen. So how was I going to maintain all of that for 88 long lengths of the pool?
Simple. I wouldn't do 88 lengths. Not all at once.
10 lengths of the pool.
When I first started out the idea of 10 lengths of the pool (about 200 yards) made me want to wave the white flag immediately. I'd be gasping for air after just two, so the thought of 10? Hell no! But now? Now 10 lengths of the pool is an easy swim for me. I can do 10 lengths of the pool. So that's what I did.
10 lengths of the pool.
And then 8 more lengths for good measure.
Each 10 lengths I used to focus on another aspect of swimming.
I spent 10 lengths working on my breathing.
10 were spent engaging my core.
10 were spent focusing on my body roll under the water.
10 focused on a long reach and smooth stroke.
By 70 I was starting to run out of things to focus on, but by then I was almost there.
The last 8 laps were spent putting it all together. Making them the best 8 lengths I could muster...which wasn't saying much considering how tired I already was.
"Swim a mile," they said. "Sure!" I replied.
I never realized the focus and strength and stamina that goes into that.
A speed of 1.2 miles per hour.
And 528 calories burned, 36% from fat.
Average HR at 127, with a max of 141.
Today, I joined the Mile Club.
I always wanted "runner's legs"...I didn't count on getting "swimmer's shoulders/arms"...
Arms Before Pictures
And close up...
And flexed the other way...
...now off to ice my shoulders and back... *lol*
Read this blog off-site at:
Tuesday, August 21, 2012
Slow. None so far this week, but I plan on rectifying that tonight. Yesterday I overslept on accident. Today I did it on purpose. No football practice tonight means I can hit the gym after work, so I decided to sleep a little more even though I was awake in time to leave this morning for my early workout.
Not so great. My stomach is a mess. I think I made a few too many allowances in the past two days and last night I overate at dinner after not eating hardly anything for several days. It's been a tough adjustment period as I try to work out how to eat with serious dietary restrictions on a tight budget. I feel like I'm failing in this...but I'm going to keep trying.
Attitude wise? I'm a little off right now. Pressure at home and at work. Problems with both. Stress has been following me around like a sad little puppy dog and I feel like I'm wearing thin as I try to give everyone the pieces of myself that I really need for my own well-being. It will all level out, I know, but for right now I'm struggling to keep my head on straight.
I need to be stretching more.
So what am I going to do about it? I'm going to refocus myself and get back to what I know. It's working. I don't know what the scale says, but the plan is working. I know that because I can feel it working. My clothes are fitting a little better. I can see positive changes in my body. I've been pretty consistent throughout the month until yesterday and today, so I need to turn it around before it gets out of hand and get back to where I know I need to be. At the half way point of the month I was at 301...and I'm hoping I can lose a couple more pounds in the last part of the month, but that won't happen if I let it all fall apart here and now. I know which way is forward...I just need to take a deep breath, gather my strength and move in that direction once again.
You can read about my thoughts on the importance of planning and see yesterday's blog about how my 10-year-old is adjusting to his dietary restrictions at my other blog:
Friday, August 17, 2012
Well, I kept saying "My first attempt at a mile straight" because I knew it was a possibility I just wouldn't be either physically or mentally ready to tackle the beast just because it happened to be the scheduled day to do it. It's part of my "forgiveness" plan as of late. Not setting my expectations so high that I hate myself for not reaching them.
This morning, it was a sore shoulder that put everything out of whack. By lap 12 it started hurting. I kept monitoring it. It was sore. Then it hurt. Then it went numb. Then it went to sore/stiffness. And finally, I had to stop because it was getting to actual pain - like injury type pain. I wasn't going to risk it. I didn't HAVE to do my mile today. I managed 48 pool lengths even with the shoulder issues in 28 minutes, and I'm alright with that. My hope is that with a weekend to rest, I'll be ready to get after that mile fresh and new on Monday morning.
As for this weekend, I don't have too many plans.
I think I'll tackle trying to get the hallway completed.
Then I move on to the living room, which needs yet another pick up, and the kitchen that always needs help. *lol* I'd like to sort through some clothes as well because I think it's time to try on my goal pants again and see if I'm any closer. I put on one of my goal shirts today and it fits me perfectly...except the length. It's a bit too short right now for me to feel very comfortable in it. Stops just at my natural waist, which just highlights my still huge stomach too much for my taste. I don't think people would think hardly anything about it, but until I feel comfortable, I can't wear it in public. I'll either have a brave day, or by the time it grows in length (when my boobs shrink again) it will be too big and I'll have to donate it.
I think we'll also make a trip tomorrow night to the drive-in again. This time I'm dragging Hubs along. They're showing Dark Knight Rises followed by Magic Mike. Anyone who has seen the second movie - is this something I should avoid taking my 12-year-old to? My 10-year-old will likely sleep through it, as he usually does, but my 12-year-old will watch any movie you put in front of him - no matter how boring - and especially when I think he shouldn't watch it (because of excessive nudity). I'll have to do some looking up of reviews. I'd hate for him to miss the first one, but maybe this weekend should be date weekend for Hubs and I to avoid any issues there. *shrug*
Oh, and today I get to fill out about 100 of these stupid forms for school. I honestly don't understand why they need the SAME information I gave them last year if it hasn't changed. Can't they just pull my emergency card from grade 4 and stick it in grade 5's slot and we can be on our way? I mean, I can understand an "Update this if anything has changed" but COME ON! I have 2 kids...they send at least 2 dozen papers for me to sign and/or fill out with each child...this is the ONLY thing about the start of a new year that I absolutely HATE.
That being said, I think both boys enjoyed their first day back at school. Logan even seemed more chipper about it than I expected. And Ethan is already crushing on a classmate (ah...to be in 5th grade again...). Logan is most excited that he's starting band this year, though. I'm actually excited as well. I was disappointed in him for dropping it last year (well, it's not entirely his fault - they make them CHOOSE an art now. You can't play in band if you take art class and you can't take art class if you play in the band. For an artistic kid like my Logan, that's like asking whether you want to keep your right arm or your left. I hate the state of "arts in the schools" these days!). This year he opted for this instead of FFA...which he really wanted to do...because I asked him to. It's sad I had to do that. I know he loves building things and growing plants, but I'm going to try to find a way for him to do that with his grandfather and at home (I'm looking into 4-H opportunities for him now). The truth is, he has an amazing ear and mind for music. He played for the first time in 5th grade. It was the first time he had picked up any instrument for any real intent to play, and he learned it so quickly he was soon being recruited by the middle school band teacher. (Who gets RECRUITED in band?!) She wrote this glowing letter to us about his amazing talent and how much she really wanted to get a chance to work with him (almost begging us for the opportunity to do so). I told him last year when he had to "choose his art" (they say elective...but it's all arts other than gym) that I would really like for him to see how far he could take this talent with some serious instruction...and I can't afford a real tutor for him. He agreed that he missed it and it would be a shame not to try...so he sadly put a 1 by band and a 2 by FFA (they call it Agricultural Studies or something like that).
I think we might be in for an interesting year ahead.
Ethan likes girls.
And I've asked him to seriously decide if he wants to be a football player or not (and if so, to really devote himself to it).
Logan is starting to play music again..so there will be concerts to go to, I'm sure.
(I also think his voice is starting to change...so that's been weird... *lol*)
I'm looking for jobs again and my off-Spark blog has really gotten me interested in that entire blog-o-sphere out there of amazing ideas and talented (and hilarious) people.
...Hubs will just keep keepin' on....because that's what he does. *lol*
Stop by my other blog to see a recap of this week's meals and how we liked them:
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