Sunday, June 06, 2010
You knew it was coming, right? The running analogy? Just popped into my head this morning, I swear.
Yes, losing weight is like running. It's a solitary venture, and something only you can do, but it can be more fun in groups. Misery loves company, right?
It takes planning, time put into training, taking baby steps, and making goals.
It takes hard work, and sometimes doing stuff you don't want to do -- running in the rain, or in the heat, or in the cold, or when you simply don't feel like running.
It comes naturally to some people, but others (like myself) really have to work at it. Some people are naturally fast, and others are just naturally slow. It may take more than one, or two, or even twenty attempts to actually become a runner.
You have to run your own race. No one else can run it for you.
I don't know why I've been trying to run off and on for the last 15 or so years, just like I don't know why I actually began running a couple of years ago (starting out with just a few 30 second intervals thrown here and there into my dog walks, yet here I am 2 years later having actually finished my first 5k at the age of 48).
And yes, my weight loss journey began about the same time as I began running. Even though I don't believe that my running causes me to lose weight -- at least, not more than any other exercise that I do.
And now for a little bling. I came home yesterday, surprising the heck out of DH who thought I wouldn't be home for probably at least another half hour, and then went right back out to DSW. They were predicting rain & thunderstorms, and it looked like we might get it, so I wanted to go out while it was still dry.
I wore these last night when we went out to dinner. Love them. They're Franco Sarto, and I have another pair by him, and I really like his shoes. I was actually looking for some flats that I could kick around the house in that would be a bit more fashionable, but these called my name.
Unfortunately, these called my name, too. It was so totally weird. These are Nine West, and I find Nine West shoes to be very comfortable. I wouldn't wear these to go shopping in, but to go out to dinner they're much more comfortable than they look.
The weird part is that there were these same style shoes in several different patterns. I found the box for these, which are my size, in with a different pattern. I loved this faux-snakeskin pattern. But when I went to try on a different size to make sure, I realized that these were with the wrong pattern, and as far as I could tell this pair was the only pair in this pattern in the entire store. And just my size, to boot.
Speaking of Nine West shoes . . . I bought these flats (obviously they have a thing going on with animal patterns right now) while in NYC. Because it was frickin' freezing the first couple of days, and the only nice shoes I brought with me were open toed slingbacks, and we had a nice dinner to go to for DH's work. At least they were on sale, and I really like them.
I didn't used to have such a big thing for shoes, but I'm going to have to cull out a few because I really don't have enough room now that my collection has grown by leaps and bounds.
So now I can wear my platform sandals and my snakeskin stilettos and remember that I am a runner.
A local Webiste is supposed to post video of everyone finishing, but I've yet to find that. Sorry, I didn't have anyone there to take a photo of me. Some guy in a nice shirt was high fiving everyone (including me) at the finish. I've no idea who he was. A senator? Congressman? I just know he wasn't the governor, considering that he's hard to miss being African American & blind.
I did find my results: 3009th out of 3551 runners; 309 out of 360 runners in my age division; 40 minutes 58 seconds; average of 12:40 miles. I am realistic and realize that there's room for improvement, but don't get me wrong: I AM proud & quite happy for those results. It's almost the time I was hoping for, but quite frankly didn't think I could do.
Saturday, June 05, 2010
I had a few butterflies last night, but nothing much, and I slept just fine. Of course until I was woken up by the pouring rain. And it continued to pour right up until about 7 am -- which actually worked out well, I was able to get the dogs out without the rain because they believe they're made of sugar and will melt in the rain.
Obviously pre-race. Don't I look beautiful? The dogs wanted to get into the act.
The two ladies in yellow are in my WW meeting. Yes, I found the group. No thanks to my leader, but WW has a walk-it challenge with the accompanying yellow tshirts. I met some members from some of her other groups.
We headed to the 37 minutes or slower area -- there are areas for your expected finish times -- which put us almost dead last. Thankfully, I never had to pee. I had my 2 glasses of water & 1 cup of red tea by 7 am, and just pee'd at home more than usual.
I never saw my WW buddies after the start, but then again they're mostly walkers (and about 10 to 15 years older than me).
Unfortunately, by the time the race started at 10 am, it was hot & humid & the sun was back out. We were wishing for rain again. The course is pretty good -- not at all hilly, even tho I'd done a little bit of hill training. And there are people all along the route cheering you on.
It's the www.freihofersrun.com/ , btw. Supposedly there are somewhere along 4000 runners, but we didn't think it looked like anywhere near that many.
The view from the almost-starting line. Next year, assuming I enter again, I'll start further up. Not that I'm really that fast, but quite frankly, being so far behind added to the run and slowed me down a bit.
According to the race clock I finished in about 41 minutes, according to my watch it was just a tad over 40. I know it's a relatively slow time, but I was very pleased with it -- I was hoping for 40, but prepared for about 45.
Was it life changing the way my leader said it would be? No. Was it fun? Sort of. Might've been more funny if it had been less humid, then again, running is STILL hard for me.
Will I continue to enter races? Probably. Occasionally. But I do like knowing how fast I truly am. I didn't stick around for the awards ceremony; maybe next year. And now, of course, I have a goal to run faster.
So if you think you can't run, you probably can't. But if you think you can, you can. 2 years ago I couldn't. I took it slow & steady, with baby steps, and now I can check off one of my goals for this year.
Friday, June 04, 2010
Ok, I've successfully navigated the streets of Albany, no thanks to either GPS or printed out maps or directions. I found the garage I'll be parking in tomorrow (couldn't park there today). The directions said to follow the signs, but I saw nary a sign, but still managed to finally bumble into it and bumble back out of it.
Then I managed to bumble on back to the visitor's parking, which wasn't a particularly easy feat either. I did stop at the wrong garage at one point and ask for directions, which were mildly useful (but not completely, still obviously I managed to get there).
I've definitely had some worse experiences with trying to find things, and it sets my mind a bit at ease for tomorrow.
Now, if you're not a runner, by now you're probably getting a bit bored with these blogs. Or maybe they're inspiring you to take it up. 2 years ago I most definitely wasn't a runner. In fact, even now it's sort of hard to call myself a runner. I don't think I've ever passed anyone who was running -- because I run slowly -- but at least I felt better when I went running in NYC and managed to at least pass the walkers!
But maybe you'll be inspired to stretch outside your comfort zone just like so many of my Spark buddies inspired me to stretch outside of mine.
I have very serious doubts about finding my WW leader's group tomorrow. I really want to, I'm sure it would be fun -- I found some revolving doors, and she said they're meeting by the revolving doors, but I've no idea if what I saw today are the right revolving doors.
There's little doubt I'll be running with someone, because this race -- the Freihofers run for Women -- is a large race. Somewhere in the vicinity of 4000 women. That's part of why I picked this as my first race -- because I figured with that many I couldn't possibly be the slowest one. And I couldn't get lost, either, when the real runners shoot past me. A definite worry for me in a smaller race.
I have also picked up my box of Freihofer's chocolate chip cookies. Don't ask me why. These were most definitely one of the nemeses of my childhood. I could eat an entire box in one sitting. The very thought of it makes me feel ill now, but I've no doubt they could still do some serious damage. Especially since I'm pre-TOM and munchy anyway.
My plan is to freeze them, take out a few, and probably have DH take the rest in to work on Monday. When I told him that, he said what makes you think I don't want to eat them? Dear, when you run your first 5k, you can have whatever you want to eat. Mine. Only not really -- I know myself and I know me & a box of Freihofers isn't a good couple.
Well, not really. A 5k doesn't really burn all that many calories. But I should be able to afford a cookie. Altho maybe not tomorrow, not if I bake a dessert for the SIL. OTOH, haven't really decided what to do about dinner. I thought we'd grill, but the weather's looking iffy and we're not even sure she's going to make it for dinner.
So finally on to my question. At the rather small expo, they had a spibelt (which is a belt with a little pocket to hold your stuff. Now, I already have a belt like that from a different manufacturer. But what caught my eye was the fact that the bib was attached to the belt.
So for all you real runners -- would that be annoying, with the bib flapping against my thighs potentially? I do hate the thought of pinning it to my shirt.
Now my biggest concern is the need to pee. I usually have to go a lot in the morning. I drink 4 glasses of liquid by about 8 am usually; tomorrow I'm just gonna do 3, but I still bet I'll need to pee before the race. I don't know where the bathrooms are -- I looked, but I didn't look that hard and I didn't find them.
Thursday, June 03, 2010
I know the short answer should be that yes, clutter can make you fat -- all that clutter weighing you down can make you eat just by thinking about wading thru it.
I have been working on the house all week long because my SIL will be visiting for less than 24 hours all told. And even tho there are still several rooms that are rather cluttered, that we still haven't sorted out a year + change from moving in, I'm so pleased by my work in the main rooms. They look so much better!
Wish that had translated into a weight loss. Last week saw a big gain -- wasn't terribly surprised, I had the munchies all week and gave into them too often, especially with WW 1 point bars. Those things are evil, and I am happy to say that they are gone and I won't be replacing them. They taste so good, but they don't fill me up in the least.
If I'm craving something sweet, I'm much better off with a Hershey's dark chocolate kiss or two. I can have 4 of them for the same calories as a WW bar, and while they don't fill me up, there is some smidgeon of nutrition in them, and because I like to let them melt in my mouth, it takes me a while to eat 4 of them (of course, I rarely eat more than 1 or 2 anyway).
This week I did way, way better with the munchies. I still ate too much -- it is pre-TOM and not surprising in the least, but always disappointing nonetheless. But I ate mindfully, no WW bars in sight, and when I still needed to eat even though I knew it would put me over on points, I chose healthy snacks for the most part -- like a few almonds, or some whole grain crackers with some non-dairy cheese spread.
Speaking of cheese spreads . . . I even got inspired to clean out my refrigerator this morning. It was on the to-do list, but I wasn't sure I would get to it. But I walked the dogs early, since they're getting balky as it gets warmer, came home and had almost an hour until I needed to leave. I looked at my to-do list, trying to figure out what I had enough time for.
Aha! The fridge! Well, I could always clean one shelf. That led me to do almost the entire regfrigerator, and while I won't gross you out by how long it's been since I've done that, I was actually quite surprised that it really wasn't that bad at all.
So there's that baby step thing in action. It applies to so many things in life. Just take one small step, and that will lead to another, and another and so on. It's the first step that's so hard.
And because I walked the dogs earlier, I had plenty of time to change and get their kongs ready instead of running around like a chicken without its head. Which got me to my meeting all relaxed for a change. So note to self: while I enjoy watching the news in the morning (and so do the dogs), maybe it's best to save it as a reward for getting something else done early in the day. Or even as a reward one day a week or so for getting stuff done in the morning.
I've picked out my reward for my 5k, too. I have a DSW coupon that's been burning a hole in my pocket. I wasn't going to go there til later in the month, working on that delayed gratification thing, but I think it will make the perfect reward. My SIL will arrive sometime late in the evening on Sat (the day of the race), maybe for dinner but probably not knowing her, and she'll leave probably midday the next day. And then I plan to hit the mall for some shoe therapy.
Lots of little thoughts, no big epiphanies, and so far excited, not nervous, for my 5k. I'm sure I'll be nervous the day of, but so far I've been busy enough that I haven't had time to dwell on it (so maybe SIL's visit on the same day was a good thing after all). Now just hoping that I can find my leader on the day of the race! She coordinates a group of WW participants -- which I didn't even know when I signed up -- and I know 2 people from my meeting at least that will be there.
She told us today where they meet, but since I've never been there, I only have the vaguest idea of where that is. And there's something like 4000 runners (plus elite runners). No matter what, it will be interesting!
Wednesday, June 02, 2010
My first 5k is Saturday, and what with going to NYC, being sick, shoveling mulch, and general housecleaning for a brief visit from my SIL (that same day), I haven't really had all that much time to think about it. Which I suppose is a good thing.
Quite frankly, my biggest worry is finding the parking. I haven't driven into Albany (the city) once since we moved here a bit over a year ago, so I have no idea where I'm going. I'll be going on Friday to pick up my packet, so hopefully I can figure it out then.
DH has offered to drive me, but he might have something of his own going on. Not to mention that means getting up (and actually moving) early for him because I've told him he is walking the dogs that day. And then he'd have to hang around downtown.
The second thing I'm praying is that it doesn't rain, altho at the moment it's looking more & more like it will. Drats. I've managed to avoid running in the rain so far, and because I plan (that's the plan, anyway) to get there early, I don't much fancy standing around in the rain.
Finally, of course, there is time goals. That's where the title comes in: I've no idea what to expect. I just got back from an easy 20 minute run, and when I mapped out it out, it's just shy of 2 miles. Which quite frankly would be really good time for me.
I know I can do it in 40 minutes on my treadmill, but I know it's easier on the treadmill, plus that usually involves some walk breaks and at the moment I don't plan to be walking.
So who knows? Whatever I run will be a PR for me since I've never run in a race in my entire 48 yrs.
I've already got my clothes together and waiting on my dresser. I bought not one but two running belts, because I needed somewhere to hang my phone, have tried both out and decided which one to use. One has a water bottle holder, the other doesn't; I plan to use the one without because I figure there will be water there and no reason to carry extra weight.
I even made the vegan pasta alfredo I plan to have on Friday last night. I don't think you have to carb load for a 5k, but you do need to eat something that won't upset your stomach. I figure this has plenty of protein (both tofu and almonds), the pasta is whole grain for some good carbs, and it's tasty and easy to digest.
Now it's just time for some no-rain dances, even tho we could use some rain.
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