Monday, September 20, 2010
Okay, so on Wednesday night last week, I decided to skip the gym and go shopping instead. I wanted to try on new fall clothes and look at boots. I was also curious about something, because not one, but two different women's magazines stated that anyone can wear jeggings and look good. I doubted this was true, somehow and I cringe at the portmanteau name, but like I said, I was curious.
I didn't see any boots I really loved, and I didn't see a lot of fall clothes I had to have. However, in the clearance section I found a pair of medium gray jeggings that were on sale for $15. The store was closing, so I didn't try them on. They were juniors XXL, so I figured they'd most likely fit pretty well through the hips, but the waist might be big. That was exactly the case. When I got home, I put them on and decided to try them with my brown riding boots instead of my black boots. Then I proceeded to become mesmerized by my own butt and thighs.
I swear those things hide all the flaws in my tummy and show off all the hard-won muscles in my legs. On Friday, I threw caution to the wind and wore them to work with the brown boots and a big green cable sweater. I work in an odd office. It's a major auto company, so it's pretty corporate. On the other hand, almost everyone wears jeans on Friday and people tend to be pretty fashion-forward. I have never seen so many women wearing stilettos to work! So, I felt a little bit naked, but decided to pretend I was more confident than I was. Who cares if I'm on display? What's on display is hot!
So, when I heard about the party at the Irish pub, part of me thought, "I'm wearing green, I'm dressed for going out, and my butt looks amazing. Of course I want to go!" At various points that night, I was told I was a "pretty girl" by a sweet older gentleman whose space at the bar we invaded; and a "hottie" by some drunk younger guy I accidentally struck up a conversation with when I misunderstood something he said. And of course, our band friends continue to flirt up a storm.
I danced wildly in my jeggings and boots to Celtic rock. I drank 850 calories worth of Guinness (!!). I had a blast!
Monday, September 20, 2010
~*~ WTF??? Template for 9/20-9/25 ~*~
Part One - Exercise & Nutrition!
Last week, I was able to do 8.5 miles of running and ate pretty well on most days, which I am most proud of.
This week, I know that I will be able to do at least three runs and two strength training sessions.
My exercise focus this week will be on knowing my limits and not pushing through injury.
My nutrition focus this week will be on getting five fruits and vegetables per day.
Recovering from a "fun" weekend of diet failure is my reason for being extra determined this week.
Part Two - Happiness and Well-being
Come up with an idea for a ritual that you can do for yourself once a week, whether it is a run, a bubble bath, a meal, an indulgence, anything.
Describe it here in your template now, and do it this week- and if you can, blog about it.
I'm going to make a list of household tasks that need doing and can be completed in an hour or less (i.e., hanging a picture, cleaning out the pantry, straightening up the linen closet, taking things down to the basement) and do one of them per week. It may not sound like something I'm doing for myself, but the state of my home bothers me and is adding to my stress level. Doing just one thing at a time will allow me to improve my home without feeling burdened.
Motivate me this week by reminding me that taking it easier for a week or so could mean the difference between success and failure in the long run.
Monday, September 20, 2010
This weekend could be considered a weight loss fail of monumental proportions, but I'm not going to beat myself up about it. I had a great weekend.
On Friday, I found out that a band I like was playing a "Halfway to St. Pat's" party at a local Irish pub. I tried to talk myself out of going for any number of reasons (lack of money, lack of willpower against Guinness, lack of willpower with musicians), but in the end, I called up my friend and we met up at the pub. Dinner was a couple of slices of Granny Smith apple with a couple of pieces of brie on Carr's crackers, and about a tablespoon of hummus and flatbread crackers. Oh, and Guinness. Lots of Guinness. As is rapidly becoming our habit, we ended up hanging out with the band during their breaks and after the gig. We know some of the same people and we all like to talk about music. And I am an unusually friendly person. Not like *friendly* friendly, but in the "I've never met a stranger" way. I would have made an awesome cruise director.
Anyway, Saturday was kind of a blow-off day. I got my haircut, went back to sleep for a while, cleaned my house a bit and watched a lot of TV.
On Sunday, my friends came over for a girls' night in. One of them is having bariatric surgery tomorrow, so we were doing a kind of "last hurrah" dinner at my house. Beer can chicken, roasted potatoes, roasted garlic and tomatoes (mostly from my plants), French bread, lava cake and taco dip. Oh, and little cucumber wontons. Those were interesting. I think we ate continuously from 4:00-9:00 PM. It certainly felt like it.
My friend, Kristin (also the Irish pub meet-up friend), came over earlier in the day so we could go for a run. It was supposed to be my 5.5 mile long run, but with all the problems I've been having with my knees lately, I decided to do what I could and try to get my knees feeling better. I don't have a lot of margin for error in my training, but I think it would be better to take an easier week than planned now than really screw things up and miss several weeks later. My right knee buckled a few times on my run, mostly while running down hills. It doesn't hurt much when it does it and it doesn't last for more than a single step. The momentum of running means that it doesn't really have much effect beyond surprising and worrying me. A little research tells me that running downhill is potentially more dangerous than running up or on a flat surface. I can see that. In any case, I ran about 3.5 miles and called it a day.
So, naturally, today I feel pretty good. I have my typical, day-after-running muscle soreness, but my knee doesn't feel like it's going to mutiny. Last week, merely twisting my leg while opening a door was enough to cause a nearly-scream-inducing sharp pain. I'm going to try to stick to my usual half-hour weekday runs this week, but on a nice flat surface. I'm also going to start working on my adductor and abductor muscles in my strength training. And when faced with a downhill run, well, that's probably a great place for a walk break!
Friday, September 17, 2010
This week has not been particularly good. It's certainly been productive, work-wise, but I've just been feeling so ridiculously blah this week.
On Tuesday, I almost had some kind of breakdown at work over my commute, of all things. Actually, scratch the almost. There were tears. There were so many delays from accidents and construction that it took me an hour and 45 minutes to drive 38 miles. Most of the accidents appear to have been caused by the glare of sunshine. I actually get delays every single day and it almost always takes me over an hour to get to work. Add that to the fact that my most recent raise didn't cover the increased cost of gas for my commute, and therefore this project is costing me money, and you get me not just stressed about my commute but actually angry.
I also got some surprising and unhappy news from a friend last night. Nothing life-threatening, but challenging. Hopefully, she'll be coming for a visit in a couple of weeks and we can talk it out. She needs a mom-cation. She may be running a 5K with me that weekend, too. If not, she will be waiting at the finish line to cheer me on. I hope she runs it, though. At this race, every finisher gets a medal. And it's not as if I'm hard to keep up with!
I think a big part of my blah feeling today is that my tummy is messed up and my knees still hurt. I've had problems with my knees for years. It's part of my family legacy. My mom's side of the family is full of people with knee problems. And let me tell you, 34 years of skiing hasn't helped that! I took a twisting fall on a snowboard about eleven or twelve years ago and what was just an occasional pain became something far worse. I went to an orthopedic surgeon because I had every symptom of a torn meniscus, but he said it was bursitis and recommended rest. And rest I did, getting progressively less active for the next decade. My knees are seriously crunchy and they were prone to just randomly giving out. Like I'd be walking, and my knee would unhinge, and then the next step would be just fine. Working out has made my knees so much stronger, so while I'm still crunchy, I haven't had that much pain. This week, it seems like the bad ol' days. I blame the cumulative effect of a summer spent primarily in cute but un-supportive shoes. It's almost like my knees are saying, "Yeah, all those wedges were cute, but that's enough now. Go put on your Merrell oxfords and put your toes away." I had a similar problem about 18 months ago when I wore ballet flats almost every day. At a certain point, I had to work from home because it hurt to move my foot from the gas pedal to the brake and that just didn't seem safe!
And I know the running is a factor. I'd be lying if I didn't admit to being more hurt after a run than before, and I've certainly been more sore during my recent runs than I have in the past. However, I still think it's more a shoe thing. These knees are not meant to wear heels so often.
I also think a foam roller is in my immediate future.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Sometimes it seems like my whole life is just one long string of exclamations.
So, you know how the WTF challenge entry card has a couple of lines about "I will" and "I will not?" Yesterday, I posted that between that moment and Sunday, I would not leave my office after 5:15 PM or go to bed after 11:00 PM. Which would be great except I realized afterward that I had a meeting from 4:00-5:30 yesterday. And somehow, I managed to turn that into not leaving my desk until 6:45. And not long before the meeting, I realized that my iPod was nearly dead and I didn't have a charger, so I needed to go home to charge it before heading to the gym.
I did manage to get to the gym and on the track by about 8:45, so my seemingly interminable delays didn't stop me from my run. But the point is, they shouldn't have happened. The meeting is a valid excuse, but why wasn't I ready to go straight from the meeting? Why did I stick around so late? Why didn't I ensure my iPod was charged when getting ready in the morning? All of those things were avoidable and a sign that I have a lot of work to do in cleaning up my bad habits.
After I got home from the gym, I made dinner and watched some TV from my DVR. From there it was a tiny leap to "Wait a minute, I feel asleep on the sofa again and it's after midnight." And then I had tummy trouble and that delayed me getting to bed further, so I didn't sleep until after 1:00 AM. Yep, a lot of work to do.
So now that I have growled at myself a bit, I need to focus on the positive things I did yesterday. Of course, one was signing up for the What the Fall??? challenge, which is aces. Another was that I registered for a Pilates class that's starting up at the end of the month. Last week was the final week for my Thursday night golf league, so the Pilates class fills that void nicely. It doesn't start until 7:30 in the evening, so I think I may make a habit of taking myself out for dinner on Thursday nights. There are so many interesting-looking restaurants in my area that I have yet to try. Or I suppose I could go home, eat dinner and then go to Pilates, since it's not that far.
The other yay is that I did not allow myself to get distracted from running by either the delays or the stop at home. I am a girl with a mission and I am proud of myself for sticking to it.
Now, the ouchy part of my post is probably related to being so good about sticking to my exercise goals and being consistent about working out. Last week, I had some kind of workout/physical activity every day except Friday. So far this week, I ran in a 5K, did strength training and cardio, and did a midweek training run. I plan to be back at the gym this evening, but I'm worried about the increasing soreness in my knees. Part of me is saying, "They're sore because they're weak! Build up the surrounding muscles and they won't hurt any more. Also, you'll lose weight, which will put less strain on them." But part of me is saying, "They're sore because they're getting overworked! You need more than one day off per week, dummy!" I call these parts Miss Gung-ho and Miss Things-that-are-probably-true-still-sound-
like-excuses. I think you can probably guess which one I side with. (And I'm aware of how weird it must seem to side with a part of myself.)
At this point, I'm hoping it will pass. However, I'm not ruling out scaling back later.
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