Sunday, November 13, 2011
So I head out the door for my seven miler. There were two men jogging by just as I was locking my front door. One of them said hello; so nice when another runner makes such a small gesture. I did a small warmup run and a few stretches and then I was off. The weather was perfect for South Florida this time of the year. It was about 7:15 so the temps were a cool 70 with no humidity so it really felt more like the 60's; a perfect morning for running. I run a different way for my long runs versus my short runs throughout the week.
I live in a gated community and I am at the back of it so I either have to wait by the back gate and be at the mercy of someone driving in/out or I can go out the front gate and continue on my way with no interruption. I usually opt to run to the front gate because I can get in half a mile of running with little traffic. My long runs take me down Doral Blvd. (this is the only road named after the city) towards 87th to a park across from Carnival headquarters and South Comm. (a huge military complex) and back.
I start my run down Doral Blvd and I run facing traffic because there are a few shopping plazas and each one has a couple of driveways to get into them. I am cautious when I go this way because some folks are "runner friendly" and others are not. Mile 1 - 1.5 is where I start to have a hard time....I am thinking too much. Friday was Veteran's day and since my dad was a Vietnam Vet, I thought of him. He passed away a couple of years ago....massive heart attack while driving (this is another reason why I like to walk/jog facing traffic). My mom and dad got divorced when I was 8 years old. They sent me away to live with my grandma(his mom) in Mississippi while all this was happening. Even though they got divorced, I saw my dad just the same. My dad came from a family of 10 and my mom a family of 13; our families were too co mingled at this point is our lives to separate because of my parent's divorce. Before I left home to go to college, my dad taught me how to change a flat tire, find the oil dip stick to check my oil, and the name of most tools. It did not matter that I was a girl, he wanted me to work at the railroad station with him. This is what I was thinking about when I started out running....good stuff.
Here is the bad. My aunt Minnie called me on Friday, on here way to the hair salon. She is my dad's sister. As I mentioned, I stay in touch with my dad's side of the family the same as my mom's; the divorce had no impact on our communication. I am still a little miffed about a conversation I had with my aunt a few weeks back. It has caused me to close up and not mention this to my mom.
My 6 year old son is on the autistic spectrum; PDD-NOS. For those who are not familiar with autism, basically it means he has some behaviors of autism. My son is in a first grade mainstream classroom the whole day and he is getting straight A's....now his behavior is another thing. Getting back to the story....my aunt calls me a couple of weeks ago to say hello and then the subject drifts to autism. She asked me if my son was autistic (she already knew this) so I played along and said yes he was on the spectrum. Her next question was "How does this happen?" I replied something like I felt it was genetic. Now here is the whopper, my aunt said" it must come from your mother's side of the family". Really. My heart fell out of my body. Since when did my dad's side of the family become superior to my mom's side. I will admit education is valued more on my dad's side than my mom's, but I did not see that coming out of her mouth. I have not told my mom what my aunt said because they talk on a daily basis and they are helping each other with life "stuff".
So I have the good memories of my dad and this horrible conversation of my aunt going through my head when the song "I Smile", came on in my NANO. I started crying like a baby, while I continued to run, and wondered why my dad had to go so soon, he was only 62, and other bad people out there who do drugs, drink like a fish and do other bad things to their body get to live. Why?
I told myself I had to pull it together or turn around and head home. I chose to keep running. My six miler consists of me running through my community to the front gate, down Doral Blvd. to 87th St., running the the park and looping around once and then start the journey home. So to make it a seven miler all I had to do was loop two times around the park. Not bad since it is just a little shy of being one mile. My first loop around was kind of lonely. There were maybe one or two people jogging. In a matter of ten minutes, there were at least 5 more people strutting their stuff.
I thought I ran a good run. My only concern for my run was whether I should bring a water bottle with me during my run and if I do what kind. There are two public restrooms on opposite ends of the park that have water fountains outside them so if I needed water, it was there. I sent an S.O.S. post to my spark friend (MBSHAZZER) Sharon and she helped me to answer to questions that I was pondering. I was also wondering if I had ran my run at the right pace. I finished my 7 miler in 77 minutes so my average was 11 minutes/mile. I ended the run feeling slightly winded (like walking up a flight of stairs) and not out of breath. She stated that is sounds like I ran a good pace. So all went well with my run. I dealt with the good and the bad. I know I need to talk with my aunt to tell her how she hurt my feelings. I know she already knows because she would call me at least 2 to 3 times a week and I rarely hear from her.
Well thanks for taking the time to read my long blog.
Daphne in Doral (Miami)
My son as Buzz Lightyear for Halloween last year.
Saturday, October 22, 2011
My blog was inspired by a comment that I left on Sparkguy's (Chris) 10+ minutes blog. This is what I wrote: "I enjoyed your blog. Thank you for sharing. You are sharing how just getting outside and kicking the ball around for a few minutes with your family or a burst of cardio can make a difference. I will try to incorporate 10 minutes of fitness a day, with my children, to help them acknowledge early on the importance of exercise (and I get to play with them)."
"I used to run many many moons ago (in high school and some college), but I had forgotten how much I really enjoyed running until I started reading sparkers blogs about running a 5k or 10k. I went to my local running store got fitted for shoes and I have been running ever since. I did the 5k Turkey Trot, here in Miami, last year and this year I am running the 10k. I will run my 1st half marathon, in March....I just turned 40."
"Your website has given me my life back. I am finally losing the weight after having 2 children and the knowledge I am gaining here from reading the articles and other sparkers blogs about nutrition and exercise is priceless.
The Turkey Trot, here in Miami last year, was a jump start to my decision to start running again. I had pretty much given up on exercising here because it is so hot most of the year. I was content to just get out there and "walk the pounds away". But then.....seeing all the people, hearing the music and nervously waiting for the gun to start the race brought back happy memories of my old running days. So much that I was already planning my next 5k on the walk back to my car. After feeling confident from running a couple of 5ks, my next quest was to run a 10k. I did that in May. Who knew running was so much fun. I did and also a couple of thousand runners here on Spark who share their good and bad run recaps.
I take the time to read the articles and other sparker's blogs. There is some great information on this website. And so I have found the courage to talk myself into doing something I have NEVER done before....sign up to run a half marathon. That goal will be met in March 2012. And to think it all started with one race.
Daphne in Doral (Miami)
Saturday, August 27, 2011
I started my journey here on Spark on 8/27/10. Some of the reasons that caused me to get serious about my weight loss were: no longer wanting to be in the overweight category on the BMI rating, I was experiencing pain on my ring finger because I was 30 lbs heavier and I did not want to have my wedding ring cut off again (1st time I was pregnant with my first child), I did not want to be dependent on any medication due to the extra weight, I wanted to be able to climb the stairs in my home and not be out of breath, and last but not least, I am sure a lot of people can relate to this, I wanted to be able to get back into some of the cute clothes at the back of my closet.
Although I joined Spark in August, I did not hop on everyday until mid October. My starting weight was 175lbs, in August, and when I decided to get serious my weight had gone up to 184. My clothes were tight, I had no waist and my face was swollen. I did not like to look at myself in the mirror. It was so hard to see my old self of 145 lbs before I had my two children. I could eat anything and not gain. I wanted to be that "girl" again.
After I got over my "I can do this by myself" feeling and acknowledged I did need help, I disconnected myself from Facebook and opened my mailbox and faithfully started reading the emails Spark sent me. From August to October, I had created a folder labeled "Spark" and dropped all my emails there. That folder is now empty because I read the emails as they come into my mailbox.
I did not realize how important drinking 8 cups of water a day was for all of my body. Eating 5 fruit and vegetables a day was not in my meal plan. I rarely bought fresh fruits and vegetables. Today when I go to the supermarket I fill the cart with bananas, carrots, lettuce, tomatoes, grapes, peaches, sweet potatoes, blueberries and strawberries on a weekly basis. And thanks to Spark, I no longer suffer from "portion distortion". See I was eating healthy foods before Spark: I had already cut soda from my diet. Okay I had an occasional soda when I got stressed, but once I read soda caused the belly to bloat from the bubbles I got rid of all soda from my diet. I have been eating wheat bread for years (I only buy Nature's Own). The problem I had with meal planning was I was eating two to three times the recommended portion. Hence my weight gain of 9 lbs before I started to learn the right way to fuel the body for exercise.
At the end of August last year, I saw a commercial on television that talked about walking 30 minutes a day three days a week to lower cholesterol and to maintain a healthy weight. Hmmm, I thought that was just what I needed to do so I set out every morning, after I dropped my son off at school, to head to the park and walk for 30 minutes on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Slowly I added a day and then after that I started walking for 45 minutes and then one hour and then up to one and a half hours. I even got a friend to walk with me because she wanted to slim down a little too. With the information I was learning from Spark and seeing the numbers on the scale drop, I knew I had found something I could follow through with and have success.
Finally I am getting to my fitness. I love exercising. I loved walking in the park. My walking buddy had to stop walking because she was taking classes and needed that time to study while the kids were in school. So I was all alone on my walks and not really feeling safe walking alone in the park by myself, I decided to walk my neighborhood. The park was actually one of the safest parks; it was right across the street from a huge military complex, but having lived in big cities for so long I get nervous in them by myself. I love my neighborhood. There are about 20 gated communities and it is so nice to walk or run because everyone is in their car driving from point A to point B so it is really quite peaceful. I love to see how each community has decorated the entrance with flowers and trees.
A good friend of mine reintroduced me to running. She does the Turkey Trot, here in Miami, every year. Her meaning behind it is to burn the calories you eat from your huge Thanksgiving feast. I am so glad she invited me to run with her and her family. I had not run in 18 years. I was SO proud of myself; I finished my 5k in 37 minutes and 23 seconds. Not bad for someone who had not run in 18 years, ran in walking shoes, and I also ran it in blue jean shorts. It was so short notice and I did not want to go out and buy large running shorts. From that moment....I was hooked on running again. I used to run cross country and middle to long distance races in high school. I no longer wanted to walked anymore; I wanted to run. Well I had to walk a little longer because I did not have the money to buy new running shoes and I did not want to hurt myself so I just picked up the pace and imagined I was running.
I have not stopped running. I ran several 5ks during the spring and my first 10k, in May. My next goal is to run a half marathon. I was thinking of running the Halloween 13.1 on Miami Beach, but I am not ready. The ING Miami marathon and half marathon is coming up in January....I am going to have to pass. Too many people are running that race and I would be overwhelmed so I am going to train for the 13.1 Miami Beach half marathon. The weather will be perfect and I will have all winter to train. Right now I am pushing my daughter in the jogging stroller to her school. Her school is a little under 3 miles so if I give myself enough time I can do one lap in the park by my son's school and then keep going to make it a 5k. Big hopes and big dreams....I so want to run a half marathon.
Along the way my journey has not been easy. I have gained and lost the same 5 lbs for the past few months, but I know I am healthier today than I was one year ago. I have fallen off the wagon a couple of times, but I have not given up. The heat does not bother me as much as the humidity. I wanted to get out there and run, run, run; that did not happen as much as I had planned for this summer. I will say that even though I did not exercise as much as I wanted to, I have exercised more this summer than I have any summer in over a decade. So kudos to me for doing that. I am done recapping my 1st year on Spark.
Thank you for stopping by to read my blog.
Daphne in Doral (Miami)
Saturday, May 07, 2011
I had a wonderful morning. I finally got to meet (MBSHAZZER- Sharon) in person after chatting with her for many months. The temp in my car read 71 so I was very pleased with the weather. The race took place in Coconut Grove so I had to get there early to find off street parking. This was my first time doing this race so I did not know where I was going; I just followed the group of people and hoped they would take me in the right direction. I finally made it there and met Sharon. Once I got the tag malfunction taken care of (I was only given one safety pin in my packet, thank goodness Sharon had extra )and off to the port o potty, it was time to make it to the starting line.
The race was well organized. There were minute/mile pace markers to organize the runners by their pace and they even had a couple of volunteers running with signs on a long pole to help runners make it across the finish line in 54 minutes, 60 minutes and 70 minutes. I waved good luck to Sharon who is an awesome runner and near the front of the pack and I headed back to the 10 minute/mile pace marker. The race started and it was a nice comfortable pace the entire run since most runners placed themselves by "their" running pace.
The scenery was gorgeous. The race went through a neighborhood in Coconut Grove and the homes and restaurants were nice to look up and gaze at every once in a while. There were a couple of people I used as pace setters and near the end I gave a couple words of encouragement to runners that we were almost there and at this pace due to finish under 70 minutes.
I did not stop. Yay!!!!! Running with the same pack of people kept me focused. It was fun to see the runners younger than me and some older than me making it happen. So I finally saw the finish line and finished my race in 67 minutes even. Yay to me!!!!! Sharon was there to congratulate me at the finish line. As Sharon was congratulating me on my run, a couple of seconds later a man came over and said that he used me as his pacer and every time he would catch up to me, I started to run faster. Lol!!! Well it was a great race, but I had to leave to head home and get back to my family.
One more good thing to mention....my husband is going to buy me a Garmin!!!! We are heading over to our local running store soon.
Happy Mother's Day to all. Even if you do not have children, but you have pets, just remember you are caring for someone else who depends on you.
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