Thursday, March 22, 2012
For the record...THIS is what a plateau looks like:
So, yeah. Dealing with that...and the fact that I can't manage to do any cardio without wanting to cut off my foot to save myself the dull ache and pain that just goes from bad to worse and back again (kinda like my plateau)...I'm moving on. Actually, I'm moving up....to the lifting room.
In my old gym, the lifting section was downstairs...but in one of my new gyms, it's up on the 4th floor. (Those stairs should give me a good warm-up, right?)
The other day, after my solid 6.6+ miles on the bike which I thought would be awesome for both my body and my heart...I went to the lifting room (which did more for me than anything else I've done in a while). Oh, how I forgot about my love of lifting like a man. I love to grunt and sweat like a pig and glisten as I lift weights that most women don't dare to even touch over and over again. How did I ever forget this feeling?
And, want to know a secret? Lifting HEAVY actually raises my heart rate faster than my fastest sprint on a stationary bike. I dare say it might even trump running, though I can't test that theory out right now. Oh, Spark...how you've missed the mark by counting my ST/lifting as little more than nothing these past few years. Where's my trophy for benching 85 pounds or hitting 500+ on the leg press machine?! Where the hell is that trophy?
So, in sight of my recent "I don't give two craps about cardio anymore because it's a lost cause" moment, I hopped back on to my favorite site - bodybuilding.com - and got myself set up with a program.
I had previously tried one of JE's programs...but the meal plan actually made me ill. Please, don't ever tell me to eat another sweet potato because those things make my tummy turn! And there is such a thing as too much chicken and fish. This girl NEEDS variety! Which was why I was so happy to see that JE's LiveFit program provides just that.
Phase One - First 4 Weeks
* Eat every 3 hours.
* No carbs/starches after 7pm (or 3 hours before bedtime).
* 5-6 meals a day.
* Can have coffee & tea with Stevia.
* Take multivitamins and other supplements.
* Drink LOTS of water. We're talking about upping my water intake from 8-10 to closer to 15.
5 Egg Whites, 1 Starch, Unlimited Veggies
2 Turkey/Chicken Muffins, Unlimited Veggies OR 4 homemade protein bars OR Small meal option
6 oz lean meat, 1 Starch, Unlimited Salad & Veggies
2 Turkey/Chicken Muffins, Unlimited Veggies OR 4 homemade protein bars OR Small meal option
6 oz lean meat, 1 Starch, Unlimited Salad & Veggies
5-6 egg whites, Unlimited Veggies
The best part about this? There are so many different combinations - and many not that different from what I already do. First of all, eggs and oats is my favorite breakfast. Second after that is omelets. Both of these fit into my breakfast options. Things like chicken fajitas, chicken/tofu and rice, fish tacos, etc. All of it is something I can make on this plan. And her homemade protein bars sound yum so it'll be something new and fun to try. (My boys are even excited about this. *lol*)
As far as the supplements go, I'm going to continue to take my potassium and glucosamine, and I'm adding in a multi-vitamin, glutamine, and fish oil. All of these should help with my joints and we all know I need help with that. I'll have to make sure my multi-vitamin has enough calcium as well, or I may add in an additional supplement for that.
* No cardio for Phase 1.
* Workouts should take about an hour in the gym.
* Lift about 60% max.
* First 2 weeks - 3 sets of 12 reps with a 60 second rest in between sets.
* Protein recovery shake or next meal within 30 minutes of completing a workout.
First 2 Weeks -
Monday - Chest & Triceps
Tuesday - Back & Biceps
Wednesday - Legs & Calves
Thursday - Shoulders & Abs
Friday, Saturday, Sunday - REST
Weeks 3 & 4 -
Monday - Legs
Tuesday - Back & Biceps
Wednesday - Chest & Triceps
Thursday - Legs
Friday - Shoulders & Abs
Saturday, Sunday - REST
I've already got my first 1/2 of the 12 week program's workouts programmed into my Gym Buddy App on my iPhone. (If you don't have this app, let me say it totally rocks. I can put down my scheduled workout, pull it up at the gym, record my weight/reps/sets, and don't have to worry about carrying around a stupid notebook (and probably losing it) and all my info is right there from the last time I did the workout. I can do it as many times as possible and I never have to worry about getting a poor signal at the gym (to check online) or having my pencil roll around on the floor where someone could slip on it (probably me) and get hurt.)
Like I said, I'm not expecting this to be a miracle thing that will have me drop weight and break this plateau.
...but that'd be alright with me if that's what happened. *lol*
Either way, I'm no worse off with this than I am now -- AND it gives me a chance to heal up. After a few weeks I'll know better how my body is responding to this and whether I want to do the whole 12 weeks (I would LOVE to finally stick to a full program!) or grab a copy of NROLFW, which I've heard great things about.
I also think this muscle endurance phase (first 2 weeks) will really help me...and those 2-3 days of rest sound good too! *lol* When I lifted before I went all out hard and heavy and was sore ALL THE DAMN TIME. And, honestly, I didn't mind...because it meant I was finally doing something. We'll see if this one eases me into it a little better, but even if I have DOMS for the next 12 weeks, it'll be the GOOD kind of sore/pain - which I totally prefer to the other injured kind of pain. ;)
Who else is lifting right now? Who can help keep me accountable?? ;)
And, yes, I'm doing what I tell people NOT to do...I'm waiting to start until Monday. But there's a good reason for that. A few actually.
1) I need the DOMS in my arms to go away. Okay, this might/probably won't happen before Monday. I lifted on Tuesday and will lift again tonight with the trainer, I'm sure.
2) I have to have some prep time. I need to have time to plan. I have to make sure I have time to grocery shop, meal plan, and batch cook. I'll spend most of Sunday putting my meals together for the week so I can just grab-and-go in the morning. I also have to adjust my eating times a bit. If I'm going to get up early, then I'll be having my first meal at or before 5am, which is going to cause the rest of my schedule to move up about an hour to accommodate and will leave me having to eat dinner here at work instead of at home. I need to wrap both my head and my body around this. Dinner is a social occassion for my family, and I won't be joining them for evening meals even though I'll probably be home super early compared to before because I'll be working out in the AM. We'll have to see how this works, but I'm sure I can figure out a way around it...make the boys some dishes this weekend, maybe, so they can "grab-and-go" their dinner as well. Heat-and-eat type stuff.... Either way, it's a planning part that needs to be worked out upfront.
3) I want to make meals, not meat with rice and steamed vegetables. So I have to work this plan into my foodie needs so as to not get bored. I can cook some wonderful dishes with these options...I just need to work my head around them.
4) I have a super-cool date tomorrow with Hubs. *lol* Let's face it, I don't want to be hung up on anything tomorrow. We're going to spend the day together, grab some lunch wherever, and then go see The Hunger Games. (YAY!)
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Last weekend was a blur of crazy. Let me try to break it down without being too awful long-winded (sorry, it's just part of my nature..I'll try to hold back).
Well, I can say the morning was great. Relaxing, actually. For once we didn't have to leave at the buttcrack of dawn to be somewhere. We planned to check in at the hotel at 3pm, so we left at 1pm and got there super fast (so it seemed). (I didn't realize it was so close, actually...next time we won't stay overnight.)
My mom got there an hour early...of course. And then everything tried to fall apart from there. Long story short? Mom wanted ME to pick the place for dinner but didn't like what I picked for whatever reason (I think it's because my stupid step-brother suggested she ride the bus to get there...my mom doesn't do public transportation) and then I got frustrated and she left and apparently there was some miscommunication and I tried not to cry because I had that "Why does my own family hate me so much?" feeling again. Yeah, it wasn't pretty. Hubs stuck up for me, as he always does (and should! ;) ) and told me we could do whatever I wanted to do. ...all I wanted to do was go see my baby sing!! (I'd already been without him for a full day and a half, dangit!)
So, drama, drama, drama...we end up at some preppy "pub" (okay, can I just say that I hate pubs that are trying to be somewhere else? This was a "pub" in WV trying to mimic itself as a Boston pub. I want to go to a Boston pub in Boston and a WV Bar/Hodown/Whatever place in WV. I'm not sure why that irks me, but it does...and Hubs just looked at me and we tried not to laugh after I spouted this entire tirade in the car and then go into the "pub" and sit down and the first thing my Mom says is, "I feel like I'm in Boston!" *sigh*). (EDIT: The only exception is "exotic" cuisine. I like that...but I don't want them to try to be something they aren't. I don't know why it irked me this place saying, "We thought - why not have a Boston pub right here in WV?" Uhm...because it's WV, not Boston...and Boston isn't exactly EXOTIC ...and I don't ever remember thinking, "When I go to Boston, I must visit one of their FAMOUS Boston pubs. For crying out loud, it's not like the Philly Cheesesteak or Seattle and it's coffee houses. Isn't Boston known for beans or something....and the tea party. Yea, I'd want to see where they dumped the tea out, not a friggin' PUB.) Whatever. Hubs ordered a white pizza. Whatever. It was burned so badly that my husband, who actually told me the other day he didn't like my pork chops because they looked like pork chops and weren't charbroiled in an unrecognizable fashion (he and his father burn popcorn ON PURPOSE), started complaining about the "doneness" of our pizza. And the Manager was stupid enough to come over and ask how it was...so I told him it was WAY overdone. And he offered to make another pizza. And I told him we didn't have time because my son was in this big concert soon. And then he basically told me to suck it up because "that's the doneness of our pizzas"...and I wanted to punch him. (I wasn't asking for any money off the bill...I really didn't care at this point..still trying to get to my son...but when you offer to eat the cost of an ENTIRE pizza and then I tell you that would inconvenience me MORE you don't then insult me by telling me that I don't know what pizza is supposed to taste like. You offer to take a bit off the bill - a buck or two at least - and apologize if it isn't to our liking.) Whatever. I had a shot, which thrilled my mother and the rest of my family...but was really only there because 1) I needed something to calm me down after the drama and 2) it was a buck, and St. Patty's Day themed. And I had a small salad with their house ranch dressing (I wasn't going to get ranch, but it was HOUSE ranch...and damn good too!) and a few cheese fries.
And then my boy sang. It was beautiful! Finally kids who LIKED singing and knew how to do it too! There was harmony and different vocal parts and just a bunch of beautifully arranged pieces. And I tried to video it (which is apparently illegal in WV because they want to charge you an arm and a leg for everything - my mom broke down and bought him a plaque WITH MY SON'S OWN NAME ON IT for $32.50!!! Crazy, right?!) but my phone said I was out of memory. Instead, I just listened. I heard his voice a few times in the choir of 200+. I used to think my mom was lying when she said she could hear me through the choir, but I get it now. I just KNOW that voice. Hubs thought *I* was lying until there was one speaking part and he turned to me, eyes big as ever, and said, "I just heard him!" *lol*
A few lessons I learned from watching my son in his first big concert.
1) I can spot my son anywhere. Within 2 minutes I pointed him out to the entire family. I just know him...his mannerisms...who he is. I couldn't even see that well (stupid contacts!), but I spotted him super fast!
2) It's even tougher to see your son singing when your eyes are filled with tears. I tried to hold back, I swear. But I was just SO DARN PROUD!
3) Concerts are long sometimes.
Okay, bear with me. These kids had 2 days to practice together so there wasn't a LOT of harmony and variety. Plus, they're all about 10-12 and their voices sound a LOT alike. And there aren't any real "male" vocal parts. My son was an Alto I. WTF happened to tenors and basses? I guess a boy of 10 can't be a bass baritone yet. *shrug* So a lot of the songs sounded very similar, but we still had our favorites (and one Ethiopian song ...gotta throw one foreign language one in so people can make up their own translations - my mom used to think every baroque song we sang in HS choir was about meat and potatoes).
The best part? Holding my husband's hand through the entire concert. Knowing that we both felt this immense pride in our son. I could feel that feeling surging between us...and I know how corny that sounds...how stupid "oh, those silly parents who are proud of their kids all the time" it sounds, but I swear to you the air between us was electric for some reason. We couldn't even hardly speak...and didn't want to interrupt the singing to do so anyhow...but each time I looked at him and he looked at me we just smiled. After the first song I looked over at him and grabbed his hand and through tears said, "We MADE that" (i know, gross...but it was magical) and I knew we both felt that pride. No marathons I ever run or tris I ever do or weight I ever lose will match what I felt in that moment. Because it's easy to make yourself do something and so much harder to try to influence a young child with his own ideas about the world to do something...and when they succeed and you feel somehow a part of that and yet somehow removed as if you had nothing to do with it!? Best. Feeling. Ever.
After it was over, it was chaos again. But as soon as I found my boy he ran to me and hugged me SO tight. And then when I showed him the plaque his grandma got him....just tears came out. He couldn't speak (and he's like me so "speechless" isn't a word used often with us). I wanted to cry all over again.
I took him back to the hotel and told him that even though I was completely exhausted, I would take him and his brother to the pool to swim. (Best part about him being away? The blissful 8 hours or so of the two of them getting along while they told stories about what they did without one another. *lol* That broke early the next morning when they fought over who got to take the suitcase to the car. *facepalm*) About that pool?! OMG! I tried swimming when we got there earlier, but one lap and my eyes were on FIRE. Too many chemicals!! I told the boys to be careful but they didn't seem bothered at all. As for the hot tub? Maybe it was because I hadn't eaten much all day (in anticipation of a GREAT dinner I had planned but never got to have), but I spent about 10 minutes in there and then nearly fainted as my blood pressure shot through the roof. WEIRD!
By Saturday, we were more than ready to come home. Too much drama and chaos and confusion...but all worth it for that hour in the theatre. I promise I'd do it all again just for that.
Yesterday that same little boy competed in the County Spelling Bee after having won the bee at his school. I could tell Hubs was impressed, but I was so worried. We'd been studying but his school had only given him the words a week and a half before. FIVE HUNDRED WORDS...some of them *I* had never heard of (and I have a degree in English for crying out loud!). I just crossed my fingers and hoped he'd make it past the second round. Poor thing was out on the word "stabilizer" after somehow skipping over the first "i" and I about died for him. Turned out alright because his crush nearly swept the title from a 6th grader (Ethan and his crush are in the 4th grade) and he felt proud about what he did. And I felt proud for him (because somehow when I spelled it in my head with him, I missed that letter too! *lol*).
As for my tri training?! HAHAHAHAHAHA!
I biked 6.6 miles yesterday. My foot and ankle hurt as if I did another 20+ minutes on the elliptical (another no-no) but not as bad as when I run. Not sure if this is something that will fade, but it's certainly frustrating. Will try swimming at the gym, but I may have to skip the biking for a bit as well. Until then, I'm raring to go with a 12-week program I'll start Monday that starts with 4 weeks of pure lifting, no friggin' cardio to speak of. That means the pressure will be OFF of me and my foot for 4 weeks...should be enough time to heal. And if I want to swim for fun in that time, I totally can, but there's no HAVE TO and worrying about how my foot will feel after the cardio sessions.
The program also includes a sort of rough outline of a "meal plan" that doesn't count a single calorie. And...yes, I'm going to say it...I'm so friggin' sick of counting calories for no reason! I can yo-yo these 10 pounds just fine on my own, thank you. So 4 weeks of no cardio and no counting calories?! Sounds like the break I need without sacrificing and feeling like I'm "giving up". It's an eating clean, eating a healthy, balanced diet with plenty of ways to vary my meals so I don't get bored meal plan that I think might actually work. And as for the lifting? Well, lifting always made me feel like a rockstar. And it doesn't put the same strain on my foot that repetitive motion does (i.e. cardio). Sounds like a win-win. And if I don't lose weight doing it? How will I be any worse off than I am already? I might actually heal in that time. Who knows!? I could break the plateau with the decreased stress levels. Either way, it's what both my heart and body need right now.
Well...it's not TOO long. ;)
Thursday, March 15, 2012
I guess sometimes when you're tired and frustrated your mind is "weak" enough to let something new in...the walls come down...you don't filter anymore...you just absorb because you don't have the energy to fight it.
I just had a true epiphany moment in all my grogginess. (Is "grogginess" a word? I'd normally look it up, but I'm too tired...so ...you get what I mean so I deem it a word...because I KNOW that's how you define a word, but I digress...)
So I'm surfing around reading more about PF on the interwebs. (I know...like I don't already know everything there is to know, right?) I finally google "cardio exercises for people with plantar fasciitis. (I would like to nominate Google for the Nobel Peace Prize...whoever thought this up was a friggin' genius and has saved my sanity more times than I can count.) I end up on a site that tells me everything I already know. "Don't run. No jumping. Nothing jarring or repetitive on the foot." Blarghity-blargh-blargh. "Swimming and biking are the best options for people trying to recover from PF." *barf*
And then I found it. A tiny little gem in the comments section. This woman talking about the exercises she had to do when she got PF for 2 years. (TWO YEARS?! I'm trying not to even think about that right now.) Anyhow, she had to resort to biking and swimming like the rest of us. And then she pops out the surprise of all surprises (to me anyhow) - "Now I'm 45 and I just completed my first triathlon."
Yes, I just heard all the collective lights switch to the on position.
What is a tri, anyhow? It's a 3-in-one. I hear of runners taking them on all the time to "challenge" themselves. They can run, no problem. They've been runnings halfs and fulls for a while now..it's old hat. But then they have to switch it up and train in...yep, you guessed it -- biking and swimming.
Yes, you just heard me face palm myself.
Did you know swimming and biking are respectable sports? Yea, I did too. Shoot, I friended Michael Phelps on FB, but that might just be because I find him incredibly sexy in a weird-face-hot-bod sort of way. Maybe. I'm not telling. And you know there was that one fella...man, what was his name? Came out with some yellow bracelets a few years back (okay, probably a lot of years back) and I actually wore one. It told me to "Live Strong" and I tried to every day of my life. Oh, yea...that Lance Armstrong feller. Know what his sport was? You guessed it...biking. They even have the race of all races...the NYC Marathon of biking races...the Tour de France.
Why the hell did I never think of any of this before? I mean, yes, I already knew it. It was in there with all the other useless information I have stored (like how the dot over an "i" is called a tittle), but I never really THOUGHT about it.
Swimming is a sport.
Biking is a sport.
They are something you can train for, get better at, and be respected for your ability in.
Just like running, they require training programs and focus driven specific workouts to teach form, technique, stamina, etc., etc., etc.
I'm now realizing what an idiot I am for never connecting these dots before.
I am a runner.
I have PF and cannot run.
Hell, I can't even hardly walk anymore.
To rest my PF and stay active, my cardio choices are basically biking and swimming.
I guess a part of me was coming to this conclusion when I got going on this new gym thing. I loved this place because they had spinning bikes and swimming pools. (Did you just hum the tune to the Beverly Hillbillies Theme Song as well? Just me? Uhm...nothing to see here.)
It's like a light just went on in my head.
I'm not a runner who can't run. I'm not an athlete who has lost her athletic ability. I'm no dog without a home.
I'm going to cross train like a mofo. I'm going to train for the Granddaddy of them all - a triathlon.
Now, don't get your panties in a wad. I haven't looked up tri races or anything. I don't even know if I WANT to do a triathlon. But I know that I have the perfect opportunity right now to train for one. I can run. I know that. I've made some mistakes, but I have the ability (and someone who has that ability at 300 pounds is not going to suddenly lose it when she's 10-20 pounds lighter...which I hope to be through biking and swimming and training like a mofo for my triathlon that might never happen).
So why not test the waters here (pun was totally intended...you know I can't let a good pun go to waste).
I've joined a Cardio Swimmers group.
I'm looking up equipment to buy (hell of a lot cheaper than running shoes my friends...a swim cap is like 10 bucks, goggles about the same...even those kickboards run (HAHA!) under 20 bucks).
I'm downloading swimming workouts and trying to understand swimming terminology (how the hell do I know what the pool measures? Do I need to bring a yard stick with me everywhere I go? When they say 1x200 do they mean yards or meters? Crap, is this going to be as difficult for me as figuring out km=miles? I need a calculator, y'all!)
I'm looking at videos of swimming techniques.
I'm looking up the dos and don'ts and ettiquette of swimming. (I'm guessing you don't say "passing on your left" when half your face is underwater...)
As for the biking...I'm gonna do that darn spinning class if it kills me.
And it might kill me.
I tried a spinning bike at the Greenbrier. Set the thing for 20 minutes...lasted 7.5 before I wanted to find a gun because I figured that death would be much less painful and drawn out. Spinning is it's own form of slow torture....
...as running once was for me.
I just have to break that barrier. I have to find my biking legs. I have to train my body for it.
It might also kill me because it requires a 4am wake up time. Did you know they have one of those in the morning too?! But I'm already trying to adjust my schedule (though last night did NOT help). I can do my first class next Tuesday. And I'm terrified. But every good thing in life I have ever done has terrified me at the thought of it. Falling in love. Having kids. All scary as hell. Going back to school at nearly 30 years old? Friggin' panic-inducing terror. But I did it. And I loved it. And even the things I thought would terrify me, I tried, and found out they really ARE that scary and I really DO hate them? Even then I was glad I did it. So what do I have to lose, really?
Okay, I have to go...I have an imaginary maybe-maybe-not triathlon to train for. (as soon as I get over that word - triathlon...which I can never spell because we say it tri-ath-a-lon...wtf?! It's almost as annoying as people spelling it 'till with two Ls...even though it comes from "until" which only has ONE L. Drives me batty...)
Thursday, March 15, 2012
First of all, I visited another gym site yesterday at lunch. The gym I joined is connected with 3 others in the area. Each one offers different specific "services" of some type. One opens early, one late, they might have different/special machines or facilities (one has a lap pool, another has a full pool and a hot tub and sauna), or might provide different classes throughout the day. My membership to one of the four gets me access to all four, so it's quite special, I think.
The one I visited yesterday is special to me because it is located about a block from my work. Yesterday I tested out my "lunch workout" theory and gave it a go. I get a forty-five minute lunch break here at work most days. So I headed out and timed myself as I went.
Walked to the gym.
Changed into my workout clothes.
Did 16 minutes on the elliptical.*
Grabbed a super-quick shower.
Changed back into work clothes.
Weighed myself again.
Walked back to work.
Got back to the office with one minute to spare. I told Hubs if I can somehow cut down on my prep or post time (whether walking faster...which I can't really do right now) or just speeding up my routine once it gets more regular, I'm hoping I can actually squeeze out a 20 minute workout. It may not be all gung-ho or whatever, but it's better than nothing. And good for days when I have to get straight home after work and would otherwise miss my regular workout at the gym.
That being said, I only did 16 minutes on the elliptical yesterday because at that point my ankle/foot started hurting and I thought it best to get off. What I learned? My foot hates the elliptical machine. It doesn't matter if I'm not continually picking up my foot and putting it down with my full weight...the motion alone nearly sends shooting pains up my leg the entire time. I tried adjusting the crossramp and resistance. I knew walking uphill wasn't a good idea. Apparently trudging through mud isn't good either. So, I hate to say this, I think the elliptical is out for a while.
What else can I do in 20 minutes? Well, they do have a couple upright bikes and a rowing machine. Plus, they have a bunch of ST equipment. So my 20 minute (hopefully) lunch workouts will have to include something like that instead.
Unfortunately, I forgot my HRM yesterday, so I wasn't able to get a good calories burned read. *sigh* I'm going to remember eventually. (I'm actually very forgetful...if I don't make a note of it, I will probably forget...and even if I make a note, I might forget the note and still forget.)
Of course, apparently I retweaked my injury with my little 16 minute trist with the elliptical machine yesterday because I could not get the pain to ease up the rest of the day. My tennis ball only provide extreme shooting pains throughout my entire lower leg. Not good.
Add to that the fact that I pretty much didn't sleep last night and, well, I had to admit "defeat" in a way and reschedule my workout tonight. I just know my body needs the rest, and I have a million other things weighing on my mind right now, so I can't overly stress about going to the gym and working my arse off when I have a bajillion things to do here at work and at home.
Ethan left this morning for his concert practice. He'll be in practice sessions all day today and tomorrow and I won't see him again until 7:30pm tomorrow night at the concert.
I'm the only one in my department at work this week. I had been handling everything just fine, and then yesterday all hell broke loose and I was left to put out a million fires I didn't even start.
I'm being called upon to basically be the go-to person in my department...because they know I'll get the work done in a timely manner. I'm cleaning up everyone else's messes and fixing mistakes done by others before I even took this job. Add to that the fact that I'm called upon to train the new assistant to our department...somehow...even though I won't be here the day she starts...actually nobody in the department will be...
I've had to apologize for other people's mistakes and take them on as my own...without any compensation or appreciation.
I've been scheduled for several speaking engagements and/or training/orientation and/or outreach sessions coming up in the next few months.
Money is still overly tight at home and then somehow my Hubs went behind me this month and paid two bills I had already paid. *bangs head on desk*
My weight still isn't budging. I realize it's only been 3 days, but I've been pretty darn consistent both days, both eating right and exercising as much as I can, so I usually see tiny decreases each day. Maybe it's sodium or water weight ...or maybe it's stress. *lol*
All of this led me to have just about the most horrible night of sleep, if you can call it that, of my life. My foot was hurting already, so I strapped in my brace, which only makes the dull pain continue because it's trying to work to stretch out that muscle in my arch. I woke up several times and had the worst dreams full of the most random stress ever (stress over scratching/damaging my car...stress over people calling me fat...really STUPID stuff) and somehow it led me to wake up wide awake at 3:30 am crying and in full-blown panic attack mode, my heart beating almost out of my chest.
I went to the bathroom and then collapsed on the bed and cried myself to sleep for another hour or so of weird dreams before the alarm went off and Hubs nudged me awake.
Yea, no workout today. I wanted to call off work so badly, but I can't because of all the fires I'm still putting out and the fact that I'm the only one here this week. So I have to stick to the one committment I simply cannot get out of, and somehow make it through today until I can go home, pack Logan and Hubs and my clothes for tomorrow, cook dinner, and then crash and HOPEFULLY get some sleep.
That being said, I haven't lost hope. I know I can handle this work stuff. It's what I do best. I'm really getting exhausted from "picking up the slack," but I can handle it because I always have. For 6 years they've been pushing me to make up where others fail...and I do, because I care about the clients we serve and the work we do and the importance of the agency. I do it because I don't know how to say no when I know it will mean the downfall of everything I believe so wholeheartedly in. It's like seeing a child on the street begging for change, knowing that without a meal or a blanket or something they're going to probably die...maybe not tonight or tomorrow, but things will get worse and they'll either die or go down a path of destruction...and knowing that you might not be able to "save" that child, but there is a slight chance that your kindness and generosity might do just that. Would you just walk on by? I have some clients who are like children, who need a kind word, who need to be guided...who don't need just one more person in their face saying, "That's not my job." Even if I just listen, give them some "common sense" advice, or say "I'm sorry this has upset you" and THEN say, "But I can't do anything for you here." ...Well, I think that does much more good than a simple "No" and "Go away."
Maybe my boss was right a couple years ago when she told me I'm too emotional (I should have corrected her - compassionate, not emotional!)...but I firmly believe it's why I'm good at what I do, and why I choose to do it even though the pay is absolute crap.
As for the weight...I just have to keep going knowing that consistency will win out. Consistent good days will beat stress and water weight and sodium in the end. It always does. It may take a while, but somehow I know it's coming.
Rest tonight and then find time to workout tomorrow. I think that's probably best.
If I don't talk to you again until after the weekend - I hope you all have great ones! I'll come back and at least give you a report of my baby boy's concert. He's already called me once and texted me once as well. Cute thing. Such a Momma's boy...no matter how strongly in his fits of rage he says he hates me...I always know he's lying. ;)
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
I have to say that the only reason it almost killed me lasting here at work all day was because I was so excited and nervous about my gym appointment last night. But I made it through...and had a pretty awesome friggin' day to boot. (I'm telling you, me without a gym is like a blind man without his stick.)
I got to the gym about 6:45pm. My appointment wasn't until 7pm, but I was told getting an early start might be possible. Raj was already at the front desk, and he set me straight to work on the paperwork (read: signing a 12 month contract). Now, this is a little new for me. I didn't have to have a contract at my last gym, so I was a little uneasy...but I realized I fully intended to see this through, so there was really no reason to squirm over something as simple as a contract stating as much. I did give him a bit of a hassle about two things...which I thought was going to have him complaining to management almost immediately.
First of all, they wanted me to pay full price for March. I immediately starting pleading my case. He told me that when it was the 15th or 16th they don't really worry about it, but anytime before that and they were expected to collect cash. I told him, "Well, why don't I just come back IN THREE DAYS?" *rolls eyes* I mean, come on! Had I known that, I would've told the girl scheduling to just make it next week. I tried to tell him that I wasn't trying to be a PITA, but he certainly HAD to see my point. I wasn't asking to NOT pay, just to not pay full price. Pro-rate my first month...that's what most places do when you start mid-month. I'll pay 10 bucks, even 12 for the extra couple days, but (I told him as politely as possible), I'm not going to pay for services I haven't received. He kept telling me it wasn't his call, and then must've had a whole "Screw it!" moment in his head because he just said forget it and said there would be no money taken out for March.
Second of all, and this, he should have seen, was for the gym more than me... (I told him, "I know I'm stupid for telling you this, but...") the contract they wanted me to sign said 12 months. I work with lawyers and contracts on a daily basis. I also have an English degree. I know how to read contracts. I told him that my insurance coverage would be up in November, a few months before this "12 months" would expire. I told him that if he read the contract carefully, it stated that they were allowed to raise my monthly rate AFTER the minimum months were fulfilled (after one year). I told him that, according to the contract, they would have to keep honoring my $20 reduced payments until March/April of next year...which means they would have to eat the extra $16 a month from December-April. He seemed unnerved, but again told me that wasn't his call. I simply said, "Well, there's a cancelation clause of 3 days, so you MAY want to talk to your manager about this..." I haven't decided if I'd fight the thing if they tried to raise my payment to the regular amount when my program ends...it depends on whether they'd allow me to break the contract by no longer paying each month even though the contract requires me to do so. Again, not trying to be a PITA, but I hate to see businesses lock themselves into something they shouldn't simply because someone wasn't thinking ahead. Either way, I let it go with the warning to him.
All of this set a rather ODD tone to our little meeting...until Misty came over. Somehow I couldn't get through to Raj that I wasn't new to the program, just new to the gym. I had talked to Misty on the phone and she knew the situation for the most part. It was interesting hearing him stumble through the setup of the program and list all the services I SHOULD have been getting (as required by the insurance company) at my old gym, but never received. Misty winced when I told her this and agreed that my complaints a few months ago voiced to the insurance company about the services NOT rendered, may have landed the gym in some hot water. (Sorry to anyone who was using the program if I was the reason they had to drop coverage...but you shouldn't have to pay for services not rendered...can you tell this is a big peeve of mine? My money is valuable, as is my time. I held true to my contractual obligations when I signed up for the program...and I should have been receiving the full benefits of the program, because the insurance company was paying them to provide them.) After a while Misty simply frowned and said, "Man! I wish you had just started here first." Me too, I told her...me too.
Once Raj figured out I was not a n00b, his entire demeanor changed and he started actually cracking a smile and understanding that half the time I was joking with him. I saw his shoulders settle and relax, and I knew we were past that awkward stage of meeting someone. We understood each other...and things went much better after that.
Misty took me into the locker room...the gorgeous, beautiful locker room with its wood panel front lockers and beautiful tile and a full 2 counter sink/vanity area. And showers...nice pretty showers. It was entirely different from what I was used to, and yet, felt more like "home" in some way. (I know I've romanticized this place, but really I'm from the big city...this is what big city folks pay for when they sign a gym contract...so the little gym by my house, while sufficient, had never met my expectations for what I wanted it to be.) First words out of her mouth were, "Shoes off or on?" Uhm...huh? I asked her what the difference was and she just smiled and said, "About 2-3 pounds, probably." *lol* Oh! A weigh-in! (I hadn't noticed the scale behind me.) I quickly took of my shoes and hopped on.
(1) It is NO FAIR to weigh someone at 7pm. No matter how good a day you have, it's just not going to be as good as that weigh-in in the morning.
(2) I *hate* those sterile "elephant" scales. This may not make sense to many of you, but those of us with LARGE amounts of weight to lose (or who once did have a lot to lose) know what I'm talking about. Panel on the floor, reading on the wall in front of you...because there's no way you could look down and see the number over your girth. (Granted, I still have problems with this...but I'm working on it.) These are the medical/industrial scales they put in doctor's offices to weigh people over the 300-350 pound mark. At least it wasn't like the first one I weighed on...which was fit for someone with a wheelchair and make me feel ginormous.
Weight: 307.4 ... .7 .... .4 .... *lol*
I pick the .4, thank you. It's about what I expected. I've been hovering around 306 since even before my gym dropped my sorry butt. I'm proud to say I've at least maintained the same range throughout this injury...so I must be doing something right.
Then the measurements...
I don't have the numbers. I didn't want to look. When I measure myself, I squeeze as tight as possible, I'll admit it. Who the hell does "loose" measurements? I don't suck in or in any way try to alter the measurement, but I want to see how low I can physically make that little measuring tape go. Misty did loose measurements. I wanted to hate her for it, but I couldn't. She took measurements of both arms, both thighs, both calves, three places on my "waist" and then my hips and chest. She says it's best when you take more measurements because then you can see where you're losing. She also talked about watching those measurements so you can analyze how you're losing and alter what you eat and how you workout to lose in certain places. I know, I know...this goes against everything we've been taught. "You can't target lose...you lose wherever your body wants you to lose." But, whatever...I let it go. If she thinks she knows the magic secret of how to get rid of my belly and make my hips and waist smaller and get rid of the fat sitting on these awesome abs of mine or reduce my bat wings...well, more power to her. I'll give it a try...couldn't hurt, that's for sure.
We laughed about my right side being much bigger than my left...and then somehow got on the topic of running and my PF. And then I fell in love with a girl named Misty.
Misty didn't scoff or look confused or concerned or taken aback or surprised by my revelation that I was a runner, and was up to running 5 miles straight when I got hit by this nasty injury. In fact, she actually got excited and giddy. Apparently she just attended a conference for some 'roller' type products which help with injuries. One is like a tennis ball, but harder, and those of you that have ever been hit with PF knows what she had me do with that. It was great to have the instruction on how to roll out my foot properly, targeting those really "sore" areas and making them hurt just enough to relieve the tension. She stated in a matter of fact way, "The real problem is probably in your calves..." (which she told me earlier while measuring were "great"...girl is crazy! *lol*), but said that I just needed to address the problem first, and work on the cause later. She said she'd arrange a full session with her so we could work on it if I want. ...I want! I told her I'd do ANYTHING to make it go away.
And then she told me a little story about Misty. About how she was never a runner before. How she graduated high school at 220 pounds, and then put on about 20 more (or more) after high school. And then how she joined that same gym to get the weight off...and now she's the assistant manager of the place (and tiny as hell!). She told me how she's run 2 HM and the Charleston Distance Run twice...and she ticked them off so proudly like I've heard so many of us do here. She said our famous, "I'm not going to be breaking any records or anything, but I love running!" I smiled and simply said, "Me too." We bonded, I'll admit it. She doesn't know it yet, but she's my new best friend...and my goal is to get to running again so we can be in a race together. (She mentioned there's a 5k coming up in April, but we both had to realize that I probably wouldn't be ready yet. ..but we know there will be more races... for both of us.)
We ended up chatting way past our scheduled time. A man came in with an appointment with her and I almost felt bad that we were making him wait because we were just in the "joy of running" talk mode. She promised to help me, and I promised to follow her instruction. First on the list? Rolling my foot like she showed me three times a day. Continuing to ice it and rest it as much as possible. And come to spinning class! *lol* (I told her I thought this would be great low-impact on my foot but high-energy and a great aerobic workout. She smiled and said she never misses a class and wants to see me there...now I just have to rework my schedule to make it happen.) Oh, and she showed me a few new stretches, so I'll be adding those in too.
After Misty left (I almost cried! ...kidding, of course), Raj took over again. Turns out I didn't NEED to do a fitness test, but they were ready and willing to put me through one if I wanted one. I said, "Yes, please!" and we were off.
3-Minute Step test
He set a metronome to keep me on pace, and then I started...and by 30 seconds I was already asking how far in I was. *lol* He told me to just do it as long as I could and I lamented that I didn't think I'd last a full minute. ...I did. One minute, one second. And got my heart rate up pretty quick too. And noticed that it came down pretty quick as well, which means I still gots me a good, healthy ticker in there.
It was while trying to maintain a reading on the heartrate machine thing he was having me hold, that Raj and I started joking around. I told him I'd broken the thing because it decided not to take my heartrate anymore. He had me move my thumbs around, press tightly, don't squeeze so tight...no matter what, it wasn't registering. "Just watch," he said. "I'll take it and it'll be fine." He did. It was. He handed it back and I finally got my reading after calling him a "show off."
Then he told me to take off my shoes for the reach test. I complied.
Longest reach - 35
(Small note. My son has to do this in gym class. When I told him I got 35 his jaw literally dropped. "I just made it to 11!" he exclaimed. I think I became my son's hero last night. *lol*)
"Okay, put your shoes back on," Raj said.
"That bad, eh?" I joked.
"No," he said, not getting it. "You did good."
I gave him that look of, "Come on, dude..think...." and saw it register in his face and he smiled a coy smile.
"Oh, yeah. Real bad. Hurry! Please, hurry and get your shoes back on!" he said, fanning the air.
We joke our way through the rest of the test.
Bench press started at just 45 lbs and then moved to 65, which he said was too easy for me. "I wouldn't call it EASY," I said. He told me if I could still talk and joke with him and laugh, it was too easy. He was right. He added another 5 pounds to each side. I told him I might be able to go one more. He told me he'd take the 5 pounders off and add 10, and I joked about his ability to do math so quickly. I ended up with a max of 85 pounds. (I had thought it was 75...but replaying it in my mind, it was actually 85...and the most I've ever benched because my arms used to be SOOOO weak!)
We moved on the the leg press, which I told him was my favorite. I made him work on this one, and he finally had to turn his sheet over and calculate how much I ended up lifting. 515 pounds, thank you very much. Again, the most I've ever lifted on that machine. (For future reference for me...the machine's plate itself weighs 65 pounds.)
And then it was time for push-ups and crunches. As we walked back into the other room, he started telling me that I could either do "regular" pushups...or the girly ones. I feigned disgust (I knew he was joking by now)..."You can't call them that!" I told him. He joked that even all the books he read called them that, and admitted he might be reading the wrong books. I assured him he was. He relented and called them "modified" and that's what I ended up doing because he used a dang "Perfect Counter" thing and my regular pushups don't go down low enough for them to be counted. (I just graduated to regular pushups not long ago...give me a break! *lol*) I ended up with 35 in a minute...a personal best, I'm pretty sure (36 actually...I didn't hit the plate right on one and it didn't count...boo!). And I ended up doing crunches instead of sit-ups because sit-ups aggrevate that one bad disc in my back and, honestly, are absolutely impossible for me to do right now. ...maybe one day. I did 35 crunches in one minute...sad as I used to crunch out 50 in a minute, but dude was putting ALL his weight on my feet and I got a cramp and had to tell him to adjust his grip before I punched something...or him. I'll improve that one for sure.
And that was that. We tested my heart rate and I learned that my HR actually gets up to about 135 when I'm doing pushups and crunches, so maybe ST does count for more than just ST, right Spark?! ;) I stretched in the locker room, filled my water bottle, and was off for the night. Raj's final words to me? "Just never take your shoes off...ever again." I smiled back at him and asked him to find some new books to read that didn't call them "girly pushups" and headed home.
And through the triumph of all that, I have to mention one more thing. I had a GREAT day yesterday.
Everything bagel with cream cheese and 2 cups of coffee with 3 Tbsp of flavored creamer (I'm working on reducing the amount of creamer, but give me time...)
It was a sexy breakfast, right Yooves!? ;)
Smart Ones Lasagne
I usually hate these types of frozen dinners, but I have to give WW credit...their meat lasagne was actually pretty good. Hrm...
Huge Braeburn apple that was amazing!
Snack 2 (before the gym)
Large yummy banana and a peanut butter Nature Valley Granola Thin
I drove ALL THE WAY HOME. That's about an hour in the car. I passed so many fast food joints you'd all be impressed to know that I didn't stop at a single one (though there were a few passing thoughts about it). Instead, I went home and cooked a yummy dinner.
About 2 oz of fettuccine pasta
1/4 c of light parmesan alfredo sauce
3 oz of teeny-tiny salad shrimp heated up with some fresh garlic
And because I'd been "good" all day, I even got to enjoy a slice of my yummy sourdough bread with a bit of butter on it.
I drank at least 8 glasses of water yesterday and ate healthy and have a great 1600-1700 calorie day to show for it. Plus the fitness test, which was a great workout that Spark doesn't count as anything, but I certainly do because I KNOW I got my HR up. I forgot to put on my chest strap for the test or I would have an accurate count of calories burned, but that's alright, because I know what I did.
Hoping for another great day today. I'm proud to say I am the honored recipient of DOMS today...I can feel it coming so I know I did well last night.
I think I'm going to head over to the gym across the street at lunch time and get some light cardio in or something. They SHOULD have an elliptical (I hope!) and I need to check out the place anyhow.
So far, so good.
Next appointment is Tuesday, but I want to get one or two more gym sessions because I'll be out of town this weekend. I have to help Ethan pack tonight as he leaves tomorrow and I won't join him up in Morgantown until Friday, so going to the gym tonight is probably not the best idea or I won't even really see him tonight. But tomorrow night he'll be gone, and my oldest loves his alone time, and I don't have to get up early Friday to go to work...so I'm pretty sure I'm going to get a workout in tomorrow night. Maybe I'll hit the pool and do some of the exercises Misty already suggested (running laps in the pool, or even just walking back and forth, she said). They also have a hot tub, so I could relax my sore muscles before heading home late. I'm happy to say I'm finally excited again. I've started logging everything in three different places - MFP, SP, and the journal they gave me last night. And I'm trying my best to just do good by myself. The best part about this is that once the weight finally decides to drop again, I think it's going to be bigger than one lousy pound...and I think once I get the ball rolling I'll meet the 200s in no time. I don't know why...I just have this feeling about it. Let's hope I'm right! I'm ready to lose again, ready to be healed, and ready to run again.
On a final note, Misty told me that the time she got PF was in her second year of running. She said she just started to take it seriously, probably too seriously, and met with every injury in the book. It sounded so familiar. I started finally thinking about doing a half marathon, I told her, and I started taking it seriously. It was no longer about my love of running, and more about training the perfect runner's body (which I don't have). So maybe that's what caused it. I dropped the love of it and started pushing myself. I tried to be smart about it, but I think I just put to much pressure on my body to perform and didn't take the time to care for it properly and give it the love and thanks it needed for what it was already doing. I kept asking for more without saying, "Thanks for what you've given me thus far." I want to remember that when I start to run again. I want to remember to love it at least one run a week. I don't care about miles or time or any of it. One day a week, one run a week, will just be about me loving how running makes me feel. I can torture myself a little bit the rest of the week to "train" (with reason), but I need to stop being so hard on myself. I've done great things. I'm going to do more great things. What's with the impatience to get them done RIGHT NOW? What then, eh?! I've seen so many runners reach their ultimate goal and then end up stunted and bored because they don't know where to go from there. I want to enjoy the ride. And the day I run that half marathon will be with a body that feels ready and able, and a heart that soars not from triumphing over circumstance, but from loving what she's doing, and how and why she's doing it.
Get An Email Alert Each Time CALLIKIA Posts