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~*~ WTF??? Template for 9/28-10/3 ~*~

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

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~*~ WTF??? Template for 9/28-10/3 ~*~
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emoticon List everything you did for exercise since 9/20. You can list this as minutes, exercises, miles, DVDs- or everything, but list it all out right here:

- Two full body strength training sessions
- Two 4x10 elliptical workouts (between muscle groups during ST)
- Ran about 10.5 miles, 6 of them on Saturday morning
- Seven push-ups (just to see if I could do them)
- Golfed 18 holes with my family (I wore shorts, most of the women in my family wore hats and gloves. It was COLD and I am CRAZY!)

emoticonBecause you were able to do all of that last week, what can you do between now and Sunday?
- Not beat myself up over missing Monday's workout due to illness and Tuesday's due to a family engagement.
- Run on Wednesday
- Start Pilates on Thursday
- Run my third 5K on Saturday- but my first without knee supports!
- See a number that starts with a 1 on my scale (yeah, baby!)

emoticonWhat is your rainy day (backup) plan?
My gym is less than two miles away and has an indoor track. I laugh at rainy days!

emoticon How much time will you devote to exercise between now and Sunday?
3.5 hours, not as much as I'd like

emoticonChoose a power food for the week. Something you can use as a go-to healthy snack, or a meal that gives you lots of fuel.
I am all about Honeycrisp apples

emoticonRepeat the ritual that you created for yourself last week. It's only consistent 'me time' if you do it every week consistently. Tell us what you are going to do for yourself this week.
Hang the picture in the bathroom. Last week, I snaked my tub drain.

These are the 3 excuses I cannot use this week!
1. Period
2. Sleepy
3. Glasses

emoticonMotivate me this week by reminding me that:
My success inspires other people to try. Thanks to Facebook, my weight loss story has an audience!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FOXXYROXXYD 9/29/2010 2:41PM

    Haha - you made me laugh, bowing down before my fitness hours/miles. Keep in mind that I have this fitness partner that REQUIRES that I must walk him. Once he gets me the door the walking is pretty easy. The running is getting easier but I bow down to your 10.5 miles of running! Especially the 6 miles -- I would just like to be able to get back to 3 miles straight! Hopefully that will get better - the doctor thinks I have fitness induced asthma and I just got an inhaler yesterday to use before running... we'll see how that goes.
Kudos to you my friend you are doing AWESOME (in every sense of the word!)
You are going to rock that 5K this weekend!

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I'm not so sure I like this week so far

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

I hate to be a Negative Nellie, but so far, I'm not all that fond of this week. After feeling lousy all morning yesterday, I stayed in my PJs, did laundry and watched TV all day. That means I skipped my Monday run. Boo! Bad Jenna! Today, I have a late afternoon meeting and dinner at my sister's to celebrate my niece's 14th birthday, so I suspect there will be no workout today, either.

I am determined to run tomorrow night, no matter what. Well, I mean, I wouldn't try to run if I had pneumonia or broken bones or something, but you get the idea. No excuses! On Thursday, I have my first Pilates class, so that takes care of that day. Friday is a bit of a quandary. One of my friends is having a bachelorette party that night, but my best friend is coming into town to stay with me for the weekend. I have no doubt that the bachelorette wouldn't mind one more person, but I'm not sure my conservative, born-again, homeschooling best friend and my liberal, agnostic, yoga-loving local friends would be a good match. I suppose all I can do is ask!

On Saturday I have yet another 5K. I swear I'm getting addicted to those things. This will probably be my last for a while. Honestly, the fact that all finishers get medals is the real draw for this one. My best friend will be running with me, though she claims she won't be able to keep up. She hasn't run in quite a while and went through some drama with an injury her doctors initially thought was cancer and then discovered it was an as-yet-undiscovered stress fracture. Thank goodness they discovered the truth before amputation! (That's actually a word they were throwing around at the time.) My friend needs considerably less health/personal drama in her life, which is why she is coming to stay with me. My house is the house of "Mom-cation." So I'm thinking chilly race, hot donuts and cider, checking out the Harvest Fest in town, and then an evening of girly drinks and Wii.

That should end this questionable week on an up note!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FOXXYROXXYD 9/29/2010 2:43PM

    You had me at hot donuts and cider! emoticon

Have a great weekend!

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DRPOOH63 9/28/2010 10:36PM

    Well the week only has one way to go....... Or maybe...... Good luck on your 5k!

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FUNFROG79 9/28/2010 10:27AM

    Have a great race! emoticon

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KARVY09 9/28/2010 10:18AM

    OMG, they thought a stress fracture was cancer???? They mentioned AMPUTATION!???! How scary and a good reminder to always, always get a second opinion.

Have a good 5K this weekend and a good run tomorrow!

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Blech and some good stuff, too

Monday, September 27, 2010

I feel like hot boiled crap today. And despite eating pizza and burgers and drinking beer this weekend, I doubt I gained 4.5 pounds in a day, so I will not be weighing myself for... say five or six days? Just long enough to get through the "overtly feminine" part of life.

In much better news, I had an outstanding run on Saturday. I found an ideal place to run locally. My town has this semi-invented part of town that doesn't get a huge amount of traffic and has nice roads and is full of beautiful houses. I say "semi-invented" because it's a planned, mixed use community, but it's built around some of the few remaining historic buildings in my town. So you have a less than 10 year old subdivision of houses, condos and parks right next to a church built in 1882 and a cemetery with gravestones from the mid-19th century. There is also a modern theatre and a historic farm. My town is the oddest mix of suburban and rural. There are cows pastured behind Kohls. It's weird.

Anyway, I figured out if I parked in the "uptown" area and ran around and through the subdivision, it would be exactly two miles. It works out pretty perfectly for even-miled long runs. It was a little chilly on Saturday and there was the tiniest bit of mist, but it was such a great run. I had left my knee supports in the car so I could grab them on one of the loops if I needed to, but it was totally unnecessary. My knees felt pretty good at the end. I don't think I could have done another loop, but it was such a relief to know I could do six miles. My iPod fooled me into thinking it had at least half power, so I was surprised by the red smidgen of battery life still remaining when I actually started my run. No music, no Nike+ voice over. No record of my run. That's pretty disappointing because I don't think I can apply my miles to the challenge I'm participating in. But I kind of liked running without music. I did find myself singing occasionally. Mostly that "I like to sing-a, about the moon-a, and the June-a, and the Spring-a" song. I get the weirdest things stuck in my head.

Yesterday, I participated in my family golf scramble and had an awesome time. I golfed with my Dad and my aunt and uncle, and my Mom rode along with my Dad. We golfed really well. My Dad got longest drive for the men and my aunt got it for the women. And I hit pretty well, myself. I can't wait to play again, but I don't think it's going to happen before next April. Anyway, all day long, my relatives were telling me how proud they are of me and how well I'm doing. My cousin's wife seemed particularly excited by the running and apple-eating. I really have been blessed with the most supportive family.

Anyway, I'm going to try not to go absolutely hormonal with the snack foods this week. I'm seeing a glass of lowfat chocolate milk and a banana in my immediate future. And maybe a scrambled egg and goat cheese sandwich and yogurt for lunch. I'm hoping that if I fill myself up with good stuff and have a little bit of chocolate, I can ignore the fact that I have a bag of chips in my house.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNFROG79 9/27/2010 2:39PM

    Congrats on your run!

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IFDEEVARUNS2 9/27/2010 2:31PM

    Ooooh, I like your lunch plans!

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POOHLA711 9/27/2010 1:09PM

    Aw, man... now I have that darn song in my head! Thanks a lot! LOL

You are rockin' your running program!! That is a huge accomplishment to run that long with no music. I don't know if I could do it!

Try not to let TOM derail you from your goals too much. And remember that your metabolism kicks into high gear around that time, so you are going to get some major credit on the scale for whatever physical activity you do!

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KARVY09 9/27/2010 12:39PM

    Nice long run... that definitely shadows the bad scale day. Just do the best you can this week!

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FOXXYROXXYD 9/27/2010 12:20PM

    Alright Jen, BACK AWAY FROM THE CHIPS!!!!! That salt will only make that "overtly feminine" water retention worse!

You can do it! Have a great week!

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And another thing...

Thursday, September 23, 2010

This didn't really fit into my last blog post, so I had to write another blog post. Too bad you only get one point for blog posts per day!

The gym where I work out is part of my township's community center. It's actually kind of neat, because you get to see people from all walks and phases of life doing stuff. It could be senior citizens playing euchre in the Senior Center, tiny baby ballerinas running off to the dance studios, teens playing basketball, or the adaptive/therapeutic fitness club out keeping active and having fun. We also get a lot of student athletes training in our gym. You always see clusters of young men and women gathered in the free weight area, working together to condition. It's fine, but it does make things a little inconvenient sometimes when you have five teenage football players standing between you and the 20 pound dumbbells. I will say that these guys are always very supportive and encouraging- and not just to each other.

Last night, I did my weight training and cardio on the elliptical. I usually break my cardio up into four ten-minute segments with strength training sets in between. I shuffled around the guys to get my weights and proceeded to do my curls. I wear my iPod while I'm training, so I couldn't hear them, though we were all smiling and being polite. It seems to me that I had a brief conversation with some of these guys this past winter about how they were using dumbbells as supports during their push-ups. Anyway, I usually just do curls in the free weight area, so I figured I would be out of their way for the rest of the night.

Wrong! I was all alone in the mat/stretching area, working on my abs and had a sudden invasion of football players. They did a kind of parade around the fitness center with weight plates over their heads, which looked kind of interesting. I bet it's a great exercise for triceps and lats. They came to a stop in the very same place where I was just getting ready to do my second set of bicycle crunches. I think my eyes must have gotten huge, because I was completely surrounded. Then I thought, Screw it. I was here first. Let 'em work around me. Turns out, they were there to do push-ups. But some of them seemed a bit reluctant to do it, because only a few guys got down and started doing push-ups. I semi-heard the following exchange:
"mumble you can do it."
"mumble no I can't."
"mumble could do it. Couldn't you?"
"She can't hear you, dog. mumble iPod."

Wait a minute... was that guy talking to me? I didn't stop doing my crunches to ask, but I was pretty sure the leader of their group just said that I could do push-ups as an example of why those other guys should try. I almost laughed. I can't do push-ups! My core isn't strong enough. My arms aren't strong enough. I'm working on it, but I can't do it yet. And then I started thinking, How do you know? See, I never actually tried the physical fitness test like I said I was going to, so I hadn't tried to do a push-up since about February or March.

When I got home, I was overcome by curiosity. I got down in the modified push-up position and proceeded to knock out six or seven before getting completely distracted by the way my knee was grinding every time I pushed-up and bent it. Now I'm curious about how many I could have done if I hadn't been so concerned about my knee. Perhaps I should try again on some kind of pad. But I am tickled pink to know that I can do push-ups without a whole lot of trouble- to my arms and shoulders at least!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LITERARY_CHICK 9/24/2010 11:21AM

    LOL, You beat the boys! That is hysterical.

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DRPOOH63 9/23/2010 10:13PM

    emoticon What a great story!

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LEXUSIASIS 9/23/2010 7:56PM

    Has it sunk in yet that you are an inspiration to football playes???? Excellent work!!! emoticon

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LIVE2RUN4LIFE 9/23/2010 5:14PM

    emoticon emoticon

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FOXXYROXXYD 9/23/2010 4:47PM

    Rock On - you are awesome!

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My Body and Ma Belleh (Or "My Belly" for those of you who don't speak cutesy.)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Yesterday, I took that SP Body Image quiz
and got a pretty surprising result: "You love your body." I expected to get "Love/Hate" like so many other Sparkers, so I was a bit taken aback. But then I took stock of my answers and thought about my own independent thoughts about my body, and I had to admit it. Yep, it's true- I love my body. I love my strong, muscular legs. I love watching how my arms and shoulders are becoming more defined. I love my butt (although I'm neutral on my hips). Most of all, I love what my body can do. I can run in a race. I can lift my nephew up and toss him around while he explodes into giggles. I can do push-ups. I can hit a golf ball straighter and longer than I could a year ago. It amazes me that- aside from the aches and pains of getting older- I am in far better shape at 39 and 199.5 pounds than I was at 21 and 140 pounds.

It's been a lot of hard work, but I really think I have turned the corner from being shocked and dismayed when I look in the mirror to being pleasantly surprised. Instead of being hypercritical about my flaws and thinking about how much I've failed myself, I think about how far I've come and how great it is that those flaws are diminishing, both is size and in perception. I feel like I've made a molehill out of a mountain.

There is one area that continues to defy my positive body image, though. And it is the spot I've begun calling "Ma Belleh." My belly is definitely smaller, but it is fat, saggy and round and it bothers me. It's almost as if it's saying, "You may have rockin' quads and awesome arms, but I'm still here, honey! You're stuck with me!" It's also hiding my abs from me, and I know they're in there. I can feel them when I do crunches.

I have always had an issue with my belly. When I was 18 and at the low end of the healthy BMI range and had a bit of a pooch, I complained about my belly to my roommate and she informed me that I had the flattest stomach of anyone she knew. I thought she was crazy and/or lying. There was definitely a certain stick-outy-ness to my belly even back then. And it just kept growing. A woman once asked me when I was due, and I had to tell her "I'm not pregnant. I'm just fat." Numerous U-Scan store check-outs have thought I was trying to steal something because my belly was on the weight sensor and I didn't know it. My belly prevents me from doing certain stretches because it's in the way. And every time I look at my stretch marks (BTW, I have no kids), I wonder if it's stretched out too much to ever really go away, no matter what I do.

Despite all my irritation at Ma Belleh, I've come to terms with it. I may get impatient to see results, but I remind myself that I will most likely lose the belly weight last. And honestly, I'm only about halfway through my weight loss journey, so who knows what will happen to my belly in the next forty pounds? I could look in the mirror one day and say, "Oh, hey! It's an oblique peeping out there! Hi, there, pretty muscle!" So I'm trying not to let the demon belleh get me down. It's there, but it can't defeat me or prevent me from thinking how much better I look. All it can really do is be squashy and wait for it's inevitable shrinkage.

And it will shrink, believe me. I've got a plan to battle my belly into submission. Besides eating well and my regular cardio/strength training, next Thursday, I start taking Pilates classes through community education. It's time to spark up my core and light a fire in my belly, so to speak. And someday soon, I'll get to do the thing I am most looking forward to: passing the "pencil test" with my belly. No more overhang!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KJENKS85 9/23/2010 6:34PM

    OMG I love this blog. You are so awesome!

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FOXXYROXXYD 9/23/2010 4:51PM

    I hear you! My belly sometimes discourages me. It doesn't seem to be going anywhere. Actually, it has... it's seems to be hanging over more since losing 50 pounds. It's been stretched out for a loooooog time and it carried two babies so it probably will never be flat but I do wish it would shrink. My legs are awesome though and my arms are getting there.
Pilates, eh? Looking forward to hearing how it works for you!
Keep up the strong work!

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SIMPLY-EVA 9/23/2010 11:52AM

  I just took the quiz and as it turns out I love my body too! I know I didn't always love it but I see that with maturity and self awareness I have made some good changes. As for the belleh, well..... its there, but its not as jiggly as it used to be. :)

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IFDEEVARUNS2 9/23/2010 11:06AM

    Awesome blog! And echos a lot of what I was thinking this morning when I took that quizz. At goal weight I still have 'the belly'. Yes, I've had four kids, but I had this belly when I was a kid, too. I think it's here to stay, but at least I can feel those muscles underneath it now.
Somehow I think you'll manage to defeat yours! emoticon

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LIVE2RUN4LIFE 9/23/2010 10:57AM

    emoticon emoticon

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LADYJ6942 9/23/2010 10:56AM

    I too struggle with my belly area. I have found that keeping my cardio up with core and stretching every day if not every other really helps. I have also been working to keep my skin moisturized so that there isnt a bunch of saggy skin because of having been stretched. I have had a few children but think belly was bigger at beginning of my weight lose journey than it every was while pregnant.

Keep up the good work, it all improves with time.

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VALIUM1 9/23/2010 10:46AM

    You have really inspired me today. Thanks, I needed this :)

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