Saturday, November 19, 2011
It's no surprise that this week has been rough on me. I had a great 5-miler last Saturday, and while it was rough, it wasn't all that bad. Monday, however, I did my "easy" 2-mile run and stupidly I ran too fast. As I told the woman at the gym yesterday, I think I was just wanting to get it done because it was cold and I was tired and that led me to running too fast. Easy days are supposed to be slow and easy. Those 2 miles going too fast, pushing too hard, gave me horrible hip pain...and that killed the rest of my week.
Tuesday, I took a rest day. I consciously chose to take the day off to heal and rest. The plan was to go to the gym every day after that and use Tuesday as a substitute rest day instead of Thursday...and then life took control.
Hubs has been working with his dad lately. My FIL does HVAC and finally landed a gig after a long time of nothing coming down the pipe for him. Because Hubs was available, he decided to help out. What that meant is that I had to take over on kid duty and take Ethan to both of his practices this week. I had to take off work early, head home, grab the boy and take him straight to practice both Wednesday and Thursday. Besides the pain in my hip, exhaustion took over after an hour and a half at the field and, well, I didn't make it to the gym and didn't manage a run or other workout either of those 2 days.
Yesterday, though, I knew I had to get back at it. I set myself up for a 45 minute circuit program through NTC. This one was called Hurricane.
5 minute warm-up included:
2 min light jog
2 min slide & glide
1 min straight leg kicks
Then a 1 minute recovery before the real work started.
30 sec modified push ups
1 min squats
1 min alternating step back lunges
2 min single leg deadlift
2 min cross back lunges
1 min plank row
1 min russian twist
2 min opposite arm/leg extension
2 min side lunge
1 min jump rope
1 min toe touches
30 sec modified push ups
1 min squats
2 min alternating step back lunges
2 min single deadlift
2 min cross back lunge
1 min plank row
1 min russian twists
2 min opposite arm/leg extension
1 min side lunge
1 min jump rope
2 min side lunge
1 min plank row
2 min cross back lunge
2 min single deadlift
And then, finally, some stretches:
2 min lying quad stretch
2 min pretzel stretch
I did a few more stretches after that. I needed it. My hip started getting pretty agitated near the end of that LOOOONG circuit and I had to take a few breaks here and there to stretch and then got right back to it. By the end of it, I was feeling pretty worn out and exhausted....and then I had to do my fitness test.
*Note: The jump rope was so hard! I used to love to do that as a kid but yesterday I only managed 3 in a row each time until I'd falter and have to start again. I pushed to get more and more each time. One time I got 4 in a row. It wasn't until the last push on the last round of jump rope that I finally managed 10 in a row! WOOT! *lol*
First was my weigh-in. Thankfully this method of working out before weighing in dropped some poundage for me again. I was at 306 yesterday morning (back down to 304 this morning!), but after my workout I scored a 302.2 on the scale, which (THANKFULLY!) showed a loss for the month. I think my waist measurement went down slightly as well, but I'm not too sure on that because we didn't compare it to last months...I'm just going on memory.
The fitness test is for my 1-year check-up with the Weight Management program with my insurance company. It's hilarious because she kept having me read how I felt on a chart she had (one of those 4-20 on how hard the workout felt). I sat down already pretty tapped out after the circuit - my range on the scale was already elevated, my heart rate was up, as was my BP...and then the real fun started.
6 minutes around the track, stopping every 2 minutes for a check of BP and pulse. Got my BP up to 220/something during the second check. *lol* My heart rate elevated as it should. I was walking pretty fast because when someone says, "Let's see how many laps you can do in 2 minutes..." I take that as a challenge. I managed about 3 laps every 2 minutes, so that felt pretty good. I nearly crashed into some old dudes on my second time around, and we had a good laugh about how we need to install traffic lights on the track.
Then we went downstairs and I had to do the leg extension and the bench press machines. The goal was to see where my max lifting weight was. In other words, the weight at which you can do one rep, but no more. Legs? She stopped me at 110. Bench press? We tried 120 and I failed, so, again, I got 110.
Then it was on to crunches, pushups, and 3 sit and reaches. The goal on the first 2 was how many I could do in 1 minute.
Crunches - 50
Pushups (modified) - 25
(I think I would've been able to do more pushups if I hadn't done that circuit before. *lol* Those plank rows are EVIL!)
As for the sit and reach - you put your legs at 14 and then reach as far as you can on a yard stick. I think I got to 28-30 somewhere on my third attempt.
We then sat down and talked. How was I doing? Was I worried about the holidays? Nope. Not really. This year it's just my family, my mom's family, and my sister's family. We're skipping the HUGE family lunch and opting for a reunion-type thing of the 3 girls and our families down at my sister's new house in SC. (Can I tell you how friggin' HYPED I am to cook in her HUGE kitchen?! *lol*) All three of us are concerned about our diets, our health, and our fitness levels. We had planned to do a turkey trot that day in Charlotte, but after further discussion and worries from all of us on fitness ability and cost, we opted out. Instead, I suggested, why don't we do our OWN 3.1 miler? No pressure. You don't even have to do it all at once. If you need to split it up over the 3 days we're there, do that then. We take it at our own pace, we do our own thing. If the kids want to run, we'll let them. (I might run too.) As far as lunch is concerned, we're going to make our favorites our way so we don't have to be tempted by things we don't really want to have around. I know my list is pretty simple...I want mashed potatoes, dressing, and veggies galore. (I'm not a huge turkey fan, though there will be turkey.) I'm thinking of making my roasted veggies, a huge salad for those who want more veggies, and I'm trying to track down a sensible dessert option for all of us (though I know there MUST be pumpkin pie there or Logan will have a fit! *lol*).
We also discussed my BMR a bit and my other numbers. It seems my BMR has gone down from 2300 to 2100...so my 1700 calorie limit I discussed the other day is pretty good, though I should shoot to closer to 1600. I KNEW I was eating too much! My BMI is at 46 now, down from 46.3 last time. They also tried to lower my weight goal again to 216 now, but I ignore that number. I told her last time that I'm going to still shoot for 230, like we decided in the beginning. Once I get there, we can reset it lower if we need to, but I can't think that far ahead right now.
Among all this, though, the best part of yesterday (besides the good weigh-in I was hoping for but wasn't expecting) were the kind words I got. She told me no less than 3 times how good I've been looking. She said, "I just really looked at you today and you're shrinking! You're looking great!" :) And my absolute favorite...I finally swallowed my fear and told her, "I got this crazy idea that me and a friend are going to do a half-marathon next year." She didn't so much as flinch. She immediately said. "And you will. I have no doubt you can do it. If anyone can do it, you can do it." Wow. Just...wow. That felt good.
So now I'm sitting here trying to hype myself up for my COLD run today. (It's been FREEZING outside lately but I HATE running indoors!) Scheduled run is 4.25 miles, but I'm going to listen to my body and do what I can do. If it's 4.25 miles, great. If it's only 3.1, fine. Even if I just get out there and do 1 mile and feel like I need to stop, I will. I told the girl at the gym my thoughts after this week... "I can either push through the workout and risk an injury, or take a rest and risk having one bad week. I'm going to choose the one bad week. An injury can put me out for several weeks...and I don't want that." It felt good to say. It made sense to me. And it gave me permission to listen to my body and stop pushing so hard when I know it's going to lead to a week like this one. Pushing through discomfort is fine...pushing an injury too far is not. More than anything I learned this year, THAT will be what I take into 2012 with me.
Anyhow, that's the update for now. Off to make a good eggs and oats breakfast, and then let that digest a little bit before getting suited up for my run. Then I've got to swipe my card at the gym and then head off to Ohio for Ethan's All-Stars game. I'm hoping they win that huge 6 foot trophy today...and hoping it warms up a bit so I don't freeze my butt off in the stands! *lol* Oh, and then a trip to Wal-Mart to grab supplies for 2 school projects we have to work on this weekend. Ethan has a diorama and Logan has a brochure project that need to be done. Thankfully we've got all next week to work on them, but Ethan really wants to get a jump on working on it so he doesn't have to rush to get it done. (Now THAT's my boy! ;) )
Have fun, y'all. Thanksgiving is NEXT WEEK! Let's finish this week with pride! :)
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
We all have choices. Sometimes they're big choices - have kids? not have kids? get married? stay single? leave a relationship? Big fat choices that change the entire course of our lives.
And then there are little choices. And we all make them every single day. All of us know how important each of those choices are to the whole "weight loss journey" thing. But sometimes we don't think of them as choices. Sometimes we consider them circumstances. Sometimes we turn around and blame life or ...well, ANYONE else for the "bad" choice we made. Duh! Who wants to fess up to consciously making choices we mentally know weren't the "right" choices? Defense mechanism, hello!
I had a choice to make yesterday. Work out and risk injury or not work out and risk weight gain. I chose the latter, not sure of how I was going to feel about it.
Honestly? I felt strange. I felt like I *could* have pushed through and tried to complete a workout. My hip was no longer hurting when I wasn't moving...only when I tried to do things like turn at the waist. I could have modified my workout and continued on. But I didn't. I made the choice to "save myself" for a possible success later, even if it means I have to give up all hope of success right now.
The only bad thing about not working out when you really want to? Too much time to think and consider. I debated my choice all night. Was I doing the right thing? Was I going to be angry about it later? We've all heard that motivational phrase, "You never regret a workout you did." Uhm, I'm going to tell you right now, that is a lie. A bold faced lie. I mean, yes, it's helpful to get you into the gym when you just aren't "feeling it," but for anyone suffering with an injury, you CAN and WILL regret a workout if what you REALLY needed was rest.
Last night I rested. I did basically nothing. I tried to give myself the night off. And I felt horribly guilty for it, as much as I tried not to.
And this morning I woke up and Mr. Scale greeted me with another gain on the scale. Not just a few ounces this time, but more than a pound. 305.8. Yay! (*dripping with sarcasm*) I wanted to cry and kick and scream and kick the scale. Rest was supposed to be the RIGHT choice, so WTF?!
Ah-ha! Another choice. How will I handle this "disappointment" I was experiencing? I have to say that while I don't have this whole thing figured out well enough to maintain a consistent 2 pound loss each and every week (which irks the crap out of me, btw), I do know enough to assess my body.
One major thing I've gained from this journey is the ability to 'read' my body. I know what I feel like on a good day, on a light day. And I know what I feel like when something isn't right. So, instead of drowning in sorrow, I chose the path of reflection. How was I feeling? Truth? I KNEW I wasn't going to be happy when I got on the scale. I could still feel the soreness throughout my body. I could feel the bloat weight. My ankles were swollen last night after a full day of work - that's highly irregular nowadays (though it used to be a daily thing). My body, I know, is still healing. It wasn't my rest day that killed me, it was that I had pushed just a TINY bit too hard the other day and now I was (STILL) in recovery stage.
Honestly, it totally sucks to have this happen two weeks in a row. I had a few weeks of positive feelings and great consistent losses on the scale and then last week was a bust and this week looks to be the same.
And it's difficult to not fall into the "NOT FAIR!" feeling of the 5-year-0ld me. I get angry and pissed off and jealous. I see people around me still dropping consistently, seemingly without even trying, without hardly even struggling for more than a day or two. I fall back into that hole and I find myself all WOE IS ME and wanting to quit.
It wasn't until this morning that I finally turned to myself and told myself to STFU because I was acting stupid and childish and it wasn't going to get me ANYWHERE to whine about it.
Sometimes, it IS your fault.
I started running...and then I started eating more. Not because I was more hungry, but because I thought I should be allowed to. I thought I was being sneaky. HA! Run, eat more. I win! *slaps self* Got yours, didn't you? Sure, it worked for a little while, and then your body started to get used to it and the bottom suddenly fell out.
This morning, instead of feeding into the lies I always tell myself and the jealousy boiling over in me, I did the one and only thing that calms me. I went back to planning, to figuring things out. I was never all that great at math (and I SUCK at geometry) but one form of math I LOVED so much I'd do it for fun was Algebra. Why? Because I just loved solving that problem. I loved seeing an X and knowing that if I worked hard enough I could fill in the blank with the right number. There was something that called to me about figuring out the mystery of it all - of changing that letter to a number and having it all work out. No other math problem did that for me. 2 + 2...blah blah whatever. 8x+5 = 21? I'm totally all over that one!
It was the planner in me. I'm still that girl. It's what I'm good at. Other people I know suck at planning and sometimes I envy and marvel at how they can just jump in feet first and not seem to get too wet. But me? I've got to have it all figured out before I get a single drop on me. No matter how many of my plans have failed, I still have full belief that the RIGHT one, if I can just figure out what it is (or what it is AT THE TIME, because I believe the plans have to change with the times), WILL work.
So I went back to planning this morning. WTF IS my problem?
1. I'm eating TOO MUCH.
No other option. That's what's up. (Okay, so I'm also getting too much sodium in my diet but my budget concerns make this one difficult to overcome right now and I know full good and well that people can still lose weight eating processed foods if they do it right...I've seen it done...even though it's not my #1 method of being "healthy"...)
I started running and suddenly I'd gone from 1500 calories, to 1800, to 2000, to 2600! YES, one day I ate 2600 calories and I thought that was alright. WTF, Esther? You're not that stupid! You are not a muscley ultramarathon man, you're a fat chick with an eating problem who happens to be running (VERY slowly, I might add). Back that shiz up RIGHT NOW!
I went back and did the math. I added up all the calories I plan to burn in a regular week of working out and ended up with 2300 calories burned each week. Cool, almost a pound. But if I want 2 pounds a week, I have GOT to get the rest of it from my food. DUH! I did the math and...oh, shocker! I wasn't supposed to be eating 2000 calories every day - more like 1700! I was 300-900 calories off! Well, it's no friggin' wonder that I'm not losing what I should be.
So, here it is, another choice. I can keep on believing the lies I told myself before. I can enjoy my late night big dinners and special treats because, "I'm a runner and I'm doing great and I 'deserve' this!" ....OR I can do what I know NEEDS to be done so that I don't have to choose between running/training for a HM or getting to my 298 goal by the end of the year. (Because I don't want to give up either option! And I'm hella stubborn!)
1. DRINK WATER
I need to up my intake. I know that from the swelling. I never considered it before, but not only do I need to keep up my regular intake of water through the winter, I need to UP my intake because my body needs MORE water for repair duties. If I'm going to push it, I had better be ready to take care of it too - or it WILL quit on me. (I'd quit if my boss was grinding me to the bone and not giving me any incentive to keep up the pace! SCREW THAT! I'm out! Why should my body be any different?) No more getting by on 8 glass of water. I need to shoot for 14 EVERY SINGLE DAY. 14 glasses of water every single day. This will help me on my long runs too because I will ALWAYS be properly hydrated, always ready to go when I need it.
One idea I've had is not allowing myself a drip of coffee in the morning until I get a full 16 oz of water in first. I've been trying to get up earlier. I don't work out in that time, I spend it in front of the computer attempting to wake the eff up so I'm not such a grouch at work. Maybe later I'll try to fit in some AM workout time (but I make no promises! *lol* I'm SO not a morning person!). The only downside to this is that I've gone from 2 cups of coffee in the AM to 3 or even 4! YIKES! And always with creamer..and probably too much creamer. So, before I even touch a single cup of coffee, a single DROP even, I must have 16 oz of water to start my day.
2. NEW CALORIE RANGE - around 1700-1800 calories
I've done this before, I can do it again. No more "I can eat more because I'm running!" *rolls eyes* That's BS, and I know it. Time to get back to where I NEED to be. If and when I start getting higher burns from longer runs, then and ONLY then, will I think about upping my range in order to keep my body fueled. But right now I'm slowing my body down with more fuel than it needs and then b!tching at it when it won't run faster or feel lighter or drop pounds. *smacks self*
3. EAT SMALL MEALS
Okay, one thing that has ALWAYS worked for me is to eat regularly throughout the day. It keeps my metabolism up and allows me to keep burning and feel full and satisfied throughout the day. I'll eat meals and snacks within hours of each other and never have a moment to think "I'm hungry!" and actually believe it. Because if I just ate an hour ago and I am going to eat again in another hour or two, and I'm staring at a piece of candy in the candy dish, "I'm hungry" is coming from my eyes, NOT my stomach.
4. NO MORE LATE NIGHT BINGES
I've been allowing myself WAY too much food at night. WTF? Why? So I can drag myself the TINY distance from the couch to the bedroom? That's just stupid! I do NOT need this much food at night. I do NOT need a 600 calorie meal so that I can SLEEP! I need my calories during the day, to keep me going, keep me focused, and fuel my workouts. No more of this, "But I have 300 calories left...I don't care that I already ate dinner, now I can have a second dinner." Yep, you heard me right. This is totally effed up and I'm STOPPING that RIGHT NOW!
5. STICK TO THE SCHEDULE
All my schedules. I need to stick to both the eating schedule I've worked up AND the workout schedule. That way if I don't see the results I want, I will have the ability to whine and complain and blame someone else! *lol* (It's like that saying - if you don't vote, you can't complain about it later...yeah, same thing going on here.)
Right now I've got my food schedule broken down like this:
370 calorie breakfast
150 calorie snack
400 calorie lunch
150 calorie snack
150 calorie snack
130 refuel after the gym (protein shake)
350 calorie dinner
This might be difficult at first. I'm SO used to eating the big meal at night, but I'm hoping those midday snacks will make me not so hungry for a big meal at night. As it is, THAT is when I'm most hungry during the day...it's also when I start dragging...around 3pm. It's always been that way and maybe it's my body telling me that I need a little more fuel there. So I'm allowing myself TWO snacks AND my biggest meal at lunch to see if that helps.
I checked my other ranges (fiber, protein, carbs, etc.) and they're pretty much where they should be right now (except the sodium, like I said), so it's not WHAT I'm eating, it's how I'm eating, how I'm grouping things, and how much of them I'm consuming at a time. Keep the balance, lose the imbalance of a heavy calorie night.
As for my workout schedule:
Sun - 0
Mon - 300
Tue - 500
Wed - 300
Thur - 0
Fri - 500
Sat - 700
This currently fits my running/circuit training schedule but I want to just have the numbers there so if somehow I get derailed by an injury or some event that happens to foul up my plans, I know how many calories I need to burn doing WHATEVER that will get me where I need to go.
I think if I stick to this plan, if I make it a priority, I won't ever have to CHOOSE between running and losing weight. I can ignore all those articles that say that training for a half makes it difficult to lose, because they NEVER said impossible...just difficult. And part of that difficulty is MENTAL. It's not that your body NEEDS more food (it will tell you when it does), but because you somehow think that because you're running you should be ALLOWED to have all those indulgences you've been restricting for so long. I call BS! Let's get this back on track...
My choice is NOT between running and reaching my weight loss goal.
My choice is whether I'm going to whine about it not happening the way I want it to, or choosing to make it work by following what I know needs to be done to get me there.
Do I choose the easy path or the life path?
This could get messy.
I can't promise it will be pretty and always a 100% success.
But I can promise myself that if I try, if I just TRY to do this and stick to it for a few weeks, I can readjust the plan if it isn't working and, at least then, I'll know it's the plan, not me, that's failing.
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
...because I really just want to cry... because I'm having one of those "maybe they were right" moments right now.
Last night I was scheduled for an "easy" two mile run. HA! Easy, my foot! First of all, the weather was BEAUTIFUL! It was 72 degrees at 6:45pm! It felt like a summer night, for crying out loud! I knew I wouldn't have many more of these left, so I wanted to take advantage of it. Unfortunately, where I live is out in the country on a main state route. That's my running route and it can get super dicey even in the best circumstances. I once tried to run it in the twilight hours and nearly twisted my foot three times. So I knew that my regular running route was out of the question. I needed some place with lights since I don't own, nor do I plan to buy right now, a running headlamp. So I ended up at a "park" in the next town over. It was on my way home from work so it kinda worked out perfectly. Plus, it's very well lit! (Even this will become a non-option soon because they're about to start their winter lights drive thru event - probably the day after T-giving - so I wanted to get one last good run in there.)
It was nice. Quiet. A little windy. It was well lit...even better than I expected. The road is solid and wide and all I really have to avoid is the goose poop littered along the entire route. It was pretty much deserted as well. There was one couple and one young family that chose to take a late night stroll there in the beautiful warm weather, but that was all I saw the whole time I was there. I only saw one car come through the route the entire time. NICE!
What wasn't nice? Those 2 miles felt like 20. No lie, they were almost harder than the 5 miler I ran on Saturday. I guess my legs were still tired or something, but I kept having to beg myself to continue. It wasn't pain at all, it was fatigue. I was exhausted and I just wanted to say "screw this!" and go home. Now, for some stupid, crazy reason, when I'm fighting a run, I tend to run faster than normal. No lie, my phone told me that at one point I was running a sub 7 minute mile! My average pace for the night was 14'16/mile. Nothing extraordinary, but these "easy" runs are SUPPOSED to be run slow. Like slower than my regular pace, slower than race pace. It's supposed to be easy on my body.
By the time the two miles were up, I did a little walking around, stretched a tiny bit, and then realized I had to pee...like RIGHT NOW! I didn't want to walk back to the bathroom and chance it being locked (though I have never once found it so...), so I just hopped in my car and headed home.
I was proud. I did my 2 miles. They were difficult, but I fought for them and completed them. I figured I'd feel better after a good rest and some more stretching.
I don't know if it's because I didn't get to "rest" immediately, and forgot to ice because of it... Hubs reminded me that I needed to make another trip to Kroger to snag a few deals for the stockpile (got something like $65 worth of groceries for about 20 bucks...including Cheerioes for $.75 a box...). When you're hurting financially like we've been, you gotta grab the deals you can. We could probably live off the stores in our house for a month now, which makes me feel great because it could come to that if Hubs doesn't find work soon. So I followed my run with a jaunt through Kroger for about an hour, and then FINALLY returned home, still forgot to ice, stretched some, rested a bit and then went to bed. It was then that I realized that my right hip was sore.
I had noticed it before. It got a little sore on the 5 miler, but I was hoping the rest on Sunday would help...and it seemed to. But I probably could've used one more day of rest because I woke up this morning and....OMG! *sigh* Minor set-back, right? WRONG! I'm FREAKING out here! I've got ice on it right now, and I'll keep trying to ice it throughout the day. I took one of my 800mg Ibuprofen, and will keep taking those all day but...I will fully admit that I'm completely torn as to how to handle this situation.
On the one hand - I KNOW, for a 100% fact, that this hip needs rest. Like, a lot of rest.
On the other hand - the friggin *#$%(* scale went UP again today (again, probably because I need REST).
But my counterintuitive mind keeps telling me that I cannot skip tonight's workout. That I have to push through. Because I'm ---this--- close to one of the biggest, most important goals of my adult life - to be under 300 pounds.
I can either:
1. Work out anyhow. Push through the pain and skip speedwork tomorrow.
2. Don't work out and TRY to eat less to make up for the loss of exercise time.
3. TRY to work out tonight and, if it hurts, stop immediately and go home.
4. Cry, and whine, and b!tch-slap my scale for being such a major PITA.
I like #4, I'll tell you that right now. That little 5 year old inside of me is screaming, "NOT FAIR! NOT FAIR!" I'm working hard, and I want those accomplishments that I've made to pay off. But here's the rub...I've been working hard...maybe TOO hard. My stupid body requires the most delicate balance of eating right + exercising hard (but not too hard) to see losses on the scale. If I eat too much, I gain. If I eat too little, I gain. If I don't work out enough, I gain. If I work out too much or too hard, I gain. And if I had been sticking to my calorie goals the past 2 weeks, I might be able to know FOR SURE that it's overworking that's doing it, and not overeating. But I haven't been doing so well. Admitted and owned. I don't know if running makes me more hungry or if I have mentally associated those too in such a way that I've talked myself into allowing more food than necessary because I'm running.
You'd think by now I'd have it figured out, wouldn't you!? I thought I would! *sigh*
BUT...if I go to my handy-dandy net calorie spreadsheet (thanks again SUGIRL!) I see that even though I've overeaten a LOT the past few weeks...and even skipping speedwork last week and taking 3 rest days instead of 2...I've had a net calorie deficit each and every day since...October 17th. Some of those days aren't high deficits, but each time I'm in the red (where I want to be).
Date - Weight - Calories Consumed - Calories Burned - Deficit
11/6 - 304 - 1873 - 846 - 1555
11/7 - 306.2 - 2065 - 400 - 928
11/8 - 305 - 2296 - 564 - 779
11/9 - 303.8 - 1736 - 0 - 845
11/10 - 305.2 - 1897 - 0 - 691
11/11 - 304.4 - 2304 - 846 - 1126
11/12 - 302.8 - 2624 - 772 - 723
11/13 - 304 - 2043 - 0 - 539
11/14 - 303.6 - 2393 - 393 - 579
11/15 - 304.2
That's a deficit of 7765 over the past week and a half, which, theoretically, should net me a loss of 2.22 pounds. Instead, I've gained .2 pounds.
The problem, I know is one of 3 things:
1) I'm eating too much.
2) I'm working out too much/too hard.
3) I'm not being consistent.
My best weight loss weeks are when I can stick to a deficit each and every day that's around 850-1000. That's when I have my 2 pound weeks. Not when I fluctuate up and down so drastically like this. And if I take off tonight, I've got another night of drastic fluctuation ahead of me. And what if it's not corrected tomorrow and I have to take ANOTHER rest day.
*bangs head on desk repeatedly*
Oh, I know, you thought you'd get to this point in the blog and I'd say something wise about how I'd figured out how to handle the situation. HA! Nope. Right now I'm thinking that option #3 above is the best one. TRY to work out, if it hurts, go home and stretch and take an ice bath and try to relax a bit and drink a crapton of water. And do that again every day until it's better and I can get back to running.
I woke up this morning and felt the pain and saw the stupid scale go back up again and all I could do was laugh. Here I'd just written a blog about how I was ignoring people who doubted my ability to do this, and now I can't help but wonder if they're right. A half? Me? WTF am I thinking?! Things were going well...I had things under control. And then, there I go, aiming too high again and getting shot in the @ss...or the hip, actually. This is one of the reasons I'm terrified to sign up for the stupid thing (the other reason is the broke as hell factor and not wanting to pay the stupid...what is it? 65 bucks?! to sign up for something that may make me miserable if I can't finish it...).
---that's me today.
Monday, November 14, 2011
I'm still sore. I'm quite tired. Scale isn't being very forgiving either. 303.6 this morning, so moving back in the right direction again, but slow as crap.
This morning I came to work and told a co-worker that I ran my 5 mile run this Saturday. This coworker used to run all the time. He completed the 15 miler here in Charleston just 2 years ago (I think). I always think of him as this wonderfully fit and athletic runner, but recently he hasn't really been able to run much. (This morning he told me that his docs told him no more than 2-3 miles.) The first thing out of my coworker's mouth? "Don't do that!" Yep. *sigh* He followed it up with many, many congrats, probably because he realized that he was discouraging me with his previous comment. I wish could explain how it made me feel though. *sigh*
How, then, could I share with him that I'm thinking of training for a half marathon? In fact, I'm doing more than thinking. Last night I sat down with my phone and scheduled all my workouts between today and May 5th, the day of the half. I went backwards from the event and put down a 12-week Hal Higdon program in my phone, and then subbed my own system in before that, and, of course, made a few minor adjustments to the Higdon training schedule. My coworker, though, is just one more reason why I'm keeping this whole thing secret. I know, you out there in Sparkland know, my hubs knows, and one other friend (who I'd be running it with) knows. That's it. And that's how it will stay.
Because I can't take one more look of doubt.
I can't take the stares, the worries. I know it's out of concern for my health and safety, but I cannot take one more person telling me that I SHOULDN'T want this, I shouldn't try.
I'm consulting with my doctors. Three, as a matter of fact.
I have met with my regular physician, who knew me at 400+ pounds and has watched me shrink since then. The same physician that gave me a refillable prescription for 800mg tablets of Ibuprofen when I told her at 380+ pounds that I was trying to run (this was back in 2008, before I finally gave up and started gaining...again). Not once has this doctor told me not to run. She said to listen to my body and take it slow and then encouraged me to do what I love.
I met with a physical therapist when I was trying to solve the hip/back problems. When I told him I was running, he simply wrote it down in my chart and moved on like I'd told him I ate a banana for breakfast. Not one single word of don't. Not one single look of doubt.
Plus, I have regular visits now with my chiropractor...the same chiropractor who saw my hips misaligned so much that he told me it had even amazed him that I could last through an entire 45 minute Zumba class. I told him I was running and do you know what he said? Not a damn thing. Well, actually, he mistook me for a former athlete. He actually made some comments that made me realize that this man thought I was a former high school track or cross country athlete, had let myself go after graduation and after having kids, and was trying to get back into the game. What else has he told me? Take it easy. Take it slow. Listen to your body. If it hurts, stop, stretch and rest, then try again. What didn't he say? - Stop or Don't or You Can't. Not once. Not ever. I keep him up to date on my mileage and how I handle any discomfort and pain during runs. (I told him that I judge the discomfort on a scale of 1-10. If it's 4 and under, no worries, keep running...once it starts to get over 5, though, I have to seriously consider stopping and if I get over 6 or 7, I MUST stop. He told me he was going to steal that and share it with his other clients.) I also told him that I feel less pain when I'm running than when I'm simply standing or sometimes even walking. In fact, this man told me NOT to stop doing what I'm doing. He told me to keep it up so that WE can work around treatments for the problem, instead of treating the problem by stopping any and all physical activity and risk me losing my mind and my momentum.
Three doctors. Not one said stop. The most I got was "listen to your body," which I do more than ever before.
I can't take the doubters.
I can't take the looks of concern.
I appreciate it, I really do, but they don't understand.
They see me and think, "A person of HER size and build must be doing SERIOUS damage to her body by pounding the pavement with that much weight."
And when I see that face, it makes me doubt it too.
Is running easy for me? Hell no!
Saturday's first mile was the first time that a mile didn't make me want to just stop and walk back home. But most of that isn't because of pain or discomfort or my body being ready. It's the doubt. The doubt tells me that it's too hard and that I shouldn't be doing this and that I'm ruining myself.
I know very few people, though, who will tell you that running is "easy." "It doesn't get easier...you just get better." If it was...wouldn't everyone be doing it?
Yes, I understand that some people experience mobility issues when they train too hard and spend their lives pounding themselves running. But I never ran before. Certainly I can get a few good years out of my body. And when it tells me to stop. When it tells me that it's going to do more harm than good. I will stop. Until then, could people just PLEASE keep their BS to themselves?!
Last night, when we were going to bed, Hubs pulled me in close, kissed me on the head and said, "I'm really proud of you." "For what?" I said. "For doing so great at work, and for doing so great at running." I then admitted to him that part of me is terrified. Terrified because something (and everyone) tells me I shouldn't do this, I shouldn't want it, I shouldn't even try. And terrified because I was taught at a young age that things can't stay good for very long. Yes, I was raised with a man who would beat the happiness out of you, so you tried not to expect to be too happy, because it just meant the beating (either literally, from his hand, or figuratively, from life) was just around the corner. I was taught to always be on guard. To "just wait for the shoe to drop." Wait for it to all fall apart. Because nobody, but especially me, deserved to be too happy for too long. That wasn't my life, it wasn't my fate.
"That was a long time ago," Hubs told me.
And he's right. But I'm still terrified. Not only about somehow failing and not achieving my goal, but afraid of achieving it and it not being enough for the people around me. I'm terrified that I'll work so hard, finish the race, and they'll be standing there going, "Wow! Great job, but you need to stop. You just aren't built for running and you're going to ruin your life."
If there's anything I've learned along the way, though, it's that fear of success or failure is one of the DUMBEST reasons to not try. "Shoot for the moon. Even if you fail, you'll land among the stars." has been a favorite saying of mine since about the age of 8. And I believe that. I believe in aiming high. I have a little plaque in my office that reminds me every day to "Dream Big!" Because even if you don't get everything that you want, at least you're trying. You may not accomplish every crazy and amazing thing you set out to do, but just think of all the things you'll accomplish on your way to trying for the big things? This weekend - I ran 5 miles. It's a stepping stone for the half for me, but just think, even if, for whatever reason, I don't make it to the half distance by May 5th, I'll still be able to say I ran 5 miles. THAT is why I dream big.
So haters gonna hate, right? (I hate that phrase...)
People can doubt me. They can look right through me if they want. They can count me out. Whatever. Just sit back, watch, and enjoy. I can take all that, because I have this incredible fighting spirit to prove people's low expectations or bad expectations of me wrong (something I didn't know I had until I started this journey).
What I can't take yet, is the constant influx of everyone up in my business, telling me to stop, don't, can't. Because sometimes the voice that says those things in my head is loud enough. Sometimes the music isn't loud enough to drown it out. And I don't need that voice turning into a chorus. Not right now. I'd rather just see the jaws drop when I'm done, the concern melt into, "Well, what's done is done..and she's still alive and walking..."
A long time ago I told myself not to tell people what I was planning because, "I don't want to say I'm going to do things unless I KNOW I'm going to do them." And that worked for a while. I was able to secretly dream and achieve. And then that turned into, "WTF does it matter to them? Who needs to know but me and my family and the people who may be involved in the process or outcome?"
I'm going to keep going. I'm going to keep trying. But I'm not telling another soul. Why do they need to know? Sometimes SP is a lifesaver for this journey because of this very reason. Because I know I'm among people who understand the uphill battle, overcoming the odds, and fighting expectations. I'd rather those voices in my head during my 2 "easy" miles tonight over the one I heard earlier.
Doubters gonna doubt...I'm gonna run.
Sunday, November 13, 2011
Weight Last Week: 304.0
Weight Goal for This Week: 302.0
Actual Weight This Week: 304.0
Weight Loss/Gain: Big Fat ZERO
I saw this coming. I really did. Yesterday morning I weighed in at 302.8. All evening my scale was giving me 298 readings...even after eating...even late at night. But this morning? Yep. 304.0. *sigh*
I know this is water weight and such. I'm sore today. My right calf is half-cramped. My right hip still sorta hurts. This isn't rocket science. My body is sore and rebuilding. That requires extra stores of water. It requires the dumping of certain toxins I may have released yesterday in a 5 mile run. So, yeah...I saw this coming. Doesn't make it any easier, but...a week of stress + two hard days of working out (especially that 5 miler yesterday) = a no-loss week.
My hope, of course, is that I drop those extra couple pounds tomorrow or the next day and then drop one or two more throughout the week while I get back to my regularly scheduled workouts. I'm sticking to my 11/20 goal of 300.0, and I'll fight for that all week. I want that 298 back and I want it to STICK!
That being said...the real question is - How do I feel after my run yesterday? Not too bad. Sore, yes. I needed sleep like WOAH! yesterday. I may have pushed a TINY bit too hard. But I don't see yesterday as a mistake. I'm not wanting to back off. I don't think I need time off to recover. I already get today off and I have high hopes that by Monday I'll be able to do my easy 2 mile run without too much trouble. Even my hip is healing itself (my worst fear is that I'd have to make an emergency run to the chiro for an adjustment because I messed things up...but I think it's adjusted itself through oodles of stretching yesterday).
So, this week counts on paper as a ZERO week. But...
...I didn't gain weight this week!
...I fought hard to reach a serious distance goal - and WON!
...and now I know a little more what I can do.
Onward to the next week...
So, how do I hit 300 next week? How do I set myself up for the best possibility of success?
1. I keep working out.
Sunday - LOTS of stretching! It's repair time, so I need to get myself back into tip-top shape.
Monday - 2 mile easy run
Tuesday - Circuit training 30min session
Wednesday - Speedwork (at least 7 intervals of 5.3)
Thursday - Rest day - more stretching!
Friday - Circuit training of 30-45min
Saturday - 4.25 miles
I went back and read the instructions for the blast through, then back up, method of training. Basically it says increase one week, then do half of that increase the next week, before increasing again. So, we're going to try that out. My longest run before yesterday was 3.5. I ran 5.0 yesterday. I should've only increased a mile to that, but ah-well. I increased 1.5 miles. So half of that is .75 miles. 3.5 + .75 = 4.25 miles. So that's the goal for next Saturday. Then, the next week, we'll see about increasing to 5.5 or 6 miles.
Like I said, we shall see. I refuse to rush myself, to rush my body. I used to treat this body like crap. When I started working out when I started SP, though, I made a concentrated effort not to push too hard. Pushing it a little is great...pushing it past it's acceptable limits leads to injury and time off that I can ill afford being so close to my goals and with a HM goal looming.
My running schedule, instead, may look something like this:
11/19 - 4.25 miles
11/26 - 5 miles
12/3 - 5.5 miles
12/10 - 5k
12/17 - 6 miles
12/24 - 5.75 miles
12/31 - 6.5 miles
1/8 - 8k
1/14 - 6.5 miles
1/21 - 6.25 miles
1/28 - 7 miles
In my head, that sounds about right.
(Side note: I'm seriously hoping that my speedwork will get me closer to my goal of an 11-12 minute mile average pace. Yesterday I managed a 14.5 min/mile pace on one of my toughest runs ever...so I'm hopeful that eventually that will go down, especially considering I used to average around a 15.5 - 16 min/mile pace.)
2. I need to stick to my calorie goals.
I had some crazy eating days this week. There's no denying that. And there's no denying that, had I eaten right, I might have seen just a small loss this week even with all the bloat weight. I need to stay around 1800-2000 calories. My body does need a little more than the 1600 calorie diet I used to follow to lose weight now that I need fuel for my run.
3. I need to balance my meals a little better.
I need more fruits and veggies. I need my carbs, yes, but I need to stick to my high protein diet. I need to focus on getting healthy fuel for my body both for runs and for repair reasons. I cannot WAIT to make a big batch of Kale Tofu Stir Fry later today so I have that for the week. It's healthy, filling and yummy. I can eat a bunch calorie-wise, but it's so filling that overeating it is nearly impossible.
BTW - here's the recipe
I need to watch what I eat at the banquet today. Just because it's there doesn't mean I need it in my body. I'll allow myself one sweet thing, for sure, but I need to fill my plate with a bunch of veggies, leaving very little room for anything else. This has worked for me in the past at food-centered events. Fill the plate with veggies and you don't have to walk out of there feeling like a gluttonous pig. Sure, maybe you ate a little too much, but the calorie punch is not quite as high when you filled up with healthy veg options.
4. I need to drink my water!
I promise you this is going to get more and more difficult as the weather cools. Summer time is easy because cold water makes my body feel great and cool...but when the weather is cold, my body resists because cold water just makes me feel even more cold. Still, it's necessary. My body needs it. Plus, it keeps me full, which keeps me from overeating as much. (Hubs called me, "Water girl" the other day and I just smiled. I used to rarely drink water...now I can't live without it!)
5. I need to plan out my meals.
I'm challenging myself to eat at home every single day this week, and to pack a healthy lunch every single day this week too. NO EATING OUT FOR 6 DAYS (because of the banquet today, I'm not counting today). I can do that. I CAN do that. Just 6 days. All yummy foods cooked by me. When all else fails, make a sandwich at home and zap a bag of steamfresh veggies to go with it. I even have Gorton's grilled fish in the freezer I can zap. Convenience foods are fine, but eating out is NOT ...just for one week.
This will also mean that I have to make sure I have everything I need here at the house and have some meals planned that are healthy and delicious so there's no confusion as to what we have and what I can make. I'll probably grab a turkey or two for the house since the deals on that this week will likely be great. (Gotta know when to grab certain deals - around Thanksgiving time - you grab a couple turkeys! *lol*) I may also look into the ham prices, though I never seem to find too good a deals on that. (I *love* ham. Turkey? Not so much...but ham?! YUM!) We'll see what else is on sale but, worse comes to worse, tofu is always a cheap option. I grab a few packages of the extra-firm blocks and I figure out how to put them into a great meal. I just found a great recipe for baked tofu and another for fried tofu like I get at the Japanese restaurants and have been trying desperately to mimic here at home. So if all else fails - tofu city up in here!
So, that's the plan, Stan. BTW - did you know there's like 49 days until 2012? I don't know about you, but I want to go out with a resounding BANG! of pride and happiness in this year, in the lessons I learned, in what I achieved. I can already add 5 miles running to my "pride" list, but I want to add "under 300" as well, so I've still got some work to do.
Run - Circuit - Run, repeat
Eat healthy - drink water, repeat
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