KITHKINCAID   37,478
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Dramatic Weight Loss and Being A Woman

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Hey Ladies,

This is less of a blog and more of a general inquiry because I am definitely experiencing different things every month. Please respond with personal experience, what you know to be true, and medical research if you've gone so far as to look into it.

How has losing weight (a lot of weight) affected your monthly schedule? Is it lighter? Heavier? More painful? Less? What about PMS?

I really believe that my weight loss at such a quick rate is affecting my body's reactions to my menstrual cycle - but I really never know what to expect. Last month I was a raging B*TCH for 5 days and it was about 4 days late. This month I had no PMS besides being tired yesterday (which I believe was more situational and less hormonal) and today it arrived a day early. I am one of those women who can feel ovulation - I get terrible mittelschmerz mid month - but since I've lost weight, that actually seems to be getting better. Again - it depends on the month. Cramping - sometimes is light, other times it is cripplingly painful. I've tried various remedies, adjusting my diet, removing milk, adding caffeine. Nothing seems to really make that much of a difference because the symptoms are different every month.

Anyone out there lost 100 pounds and can speak to what I have to look forward to? I know we're all different, but this really has me scratching my head! (And reaching for my heating pad).

Help! Time to dish about TOM for reals :) Mother Nature has a wry sense of humour if you ask me.

Jenn

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LISSOME 11/13/2010 5:25PM

    I know that's not 100 pounds, but it was a pretty big change on my frame. So I think the TOM changes might be similar.

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LISSOME 11/13/2010 5:23PM

    I lost 67 pounds (206 to 139), and my periods became extremely regular after the weight loss. Pretty much the same monthly symptoms, though. Or PMS...whatever you call it :)
At my highest weight (closer to 220), my periods were extremely irregular. I'd skip months all the time, and it made gauging when I would have it extremely difficult. After the weight loss, it became what I would assume is its "normal" self. 6 days long, medium to light, and about 31-32 days as my cycle time.
I never could have given those kinds of specifics before.

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MINIDRIVER63 11/13/2010 3:32PM

    I blame perimenopause, but I blame that for everything. :P



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ATREAT4ME 11/13/2010 10:16AM

    I have a smart phone and use an app to track TOM and all the glory he brings. Great app and the only one I've ever bought. I can add symptoms to track and it provides reports. In the past 4 months I've discovered that I retain weight twice a month: ovulation and just before I start. So my losses are (big loss, no loss or gain, big loss, no loss or gain.) I've also noticed the more water I drink during TOM the better I feel and the best way to get rid of cramps and, uh, *mood alterations* is to exercise. A LOT!

Also, check out Yoovie's blogs if you haven't done so already. She wrote one (during her WTFall Challenge) that had detailed links about the science behind TOM. It jived with a lot of what I'm experiencing. I tried to find it for you, but kiddos want my attention so I'm running out of time.

If you have a moment, I would like to know what conclusions you reach. It's a topic I rarely talk about but one that affects me greatly. So, I think it's time for me to move this from TMI to discussing for education's sake.

Thanks!
Cheryl

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CALLIKIA 11/13/2010 8:19AM

    Because I've also got the added bonus of starting Depo, I don't know how much help I can be. However, it only goes to reason that changes in your body will throw your entire system off. Just be thankful you didn't get to experience my 2 month TOM! *lol*

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AUTUMNPOTTER 11/11/2010 5:49PM

    I have PCOS and have never had a regular cycle growing up. My weight hit the high point at 330lbs and I would get one cycle every year on Christmas Eve. It was weird I think TOM liked to ruin the holiday.

I dropped 50 lbs from a diet change (gave up McDonald's food for Lent) and medication and my cycle returned with vengeance. Every month, major cramps and PMS. Then I went back to eating normally and put 30 pounds back on and my cycle stopped completely.

A few years ago I lost another 50 lbs for a wedding, not mine, and my cycle reappeared this time with no PMS and light cramps and heavy flow for no more than 3 days. I gained 20 of those pounds back again, and I have not seen it in over a year.

But I'm dropping weight for the last time (no regaining it again) I'm expecting TOM to show up within the next 5-10 pound loss I hope it takes the second route and is not disruptive and painful. I will not be surprised to see it return on Christmas Eve.

Comment edited on: 11/11/2010 5:53:10 PM

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NARA87 11/11/2010 4:15PM

    OK, bare with me, because this is going to be long and ESL:

I used to weigh 178 pounds. My cycle was normal. It was quite heavy, it lasted 6 days and I was usually in a lot of pain.

Then I put on 75 pounds in a year. During that year, my periods started coming less often and when my weight was stabilized at 253, they stopped coming altogether. After a year or so, I started getting my period again, but there was no telling as to when I would. It always took a few months off.

Now I'm in the process of losing weight. First, I started getting my period more frequently, but it took longer than 35 days between periods. After a while it was 15 to 20 days between periods. And now it's becoming normal.

It always lasts 6 days. It got heavier and way more painful after I gained the weight and now it's lighter and less painful than ever before. I also spot the day before now, which has never happened before.

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BIKERBABYZ 11/11/2010 3:59PM

    I haven't quite lost 100 pounds, but I have lost 65 pounds...

I tried out Weight Watchers once (didn't work for me), but I remember seeing an article about this that was very informative. I can't find that link, but I did find this one that might be helpful (granted it is Wiki.. but still some good info)

http://wiki.answers.co
m/Q/Can_losing_a_lot_of_weight_
affect_your_menstrual_cycle

I personally have PCOS so my periods are already nearly nonexistant, but when I was at my heaviest hovering around 255 pounds, I didn't get a period at all. Not one. Even with birth control, still no period.

When I lost 30 pounds, I was able to get a period while on birth control. At the 50 pound mark, I would get periods once in a while without medication(about 3 times a year) which is WAY more than never!

For me, the more weight I lose, the lighter and shorter they tend to get. Granted I have to bring on a period with hormone medication, but it is still a period none the less.

I do hope your flow and pain improves and that you are able to get the answers you need!



Comment edited on: 11/11/2010 4:04:49 PM

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KT-NICHOLS-13 11/11/2010 3:35PM

    My symptoms are far less painful since I changed my diet and shedding 90/100 lbs. I still note - along with others - that I can rage quit hard 5-days before I start. My physical symptoms are less since Doc told me to stop eating gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, sugar and soda. My typical "period headaches" are gone, my aches are gone and the cramping is rare. I tend to be quit regular but I attribute that to the IUD I have (the non-hormone one). Before that it was either no period or a surprise period.

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KRAWRS 11/11/2010 3:31PM

    Hmm... I'm not sure, scientifically. I do know from personal experience that TOM in general is a whole lot easier to handle when I'm exercising regularly... lighter, shorter, less crampy/bloaty/moody. However, I have never lost a substantial amount of weight, so I can't speak to that!

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WYND10 11/11/2010 3:12PM

    My cycle is still all over the place, but that's the way it's been since I've had a cycle. I am currently going through issues with my BCP again with having TOM twice a month! Yay! I don't know how much my weight-loss is contributing to the crazy.

Anyhoo, I am interested to see what others have to say about this. Thanks for posting.

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SBATES63 11/11/2010 2:56PM

    I have read in a SP article that getting fitter and eating healthier may lessen the symptoms of PMS like moodiness and cramps. I can't tell you from experience, since I am at an age where my cycle is fluctuating in duration and severity all over the place.

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CINCYDORA 11/11/2010 2:55PM

    Given that our fat cells store hormones, and lots of other things, I'd be surprised if there was no change at all. Fat cells also store fat soluble chemicals. That's one reason why I try so hard to eat unprocessed foods. I don't want to add more gunk to my system than it can handle.

The most I ever lost in one stretch was 60 lbs over about 2 years (I'm trying to relose it now :( ). My whole life I've been irregular and have suspected that being overweight affected it. I actually find that with weight loss things get more regular, although that might have as much to do with me living a more regular schedule than when I'm not focused on health.

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-POOKIE- 11/11/2010 2:42PM

    Mine had stopped for a while with the BC I was on.

Then, they came back with an insane vengence. Apprently fat stores hormones, and as we lose that fat the hormones are released, hence the crazy.

Then after several months awful rounds things settled down, and Im back to virtually nothing with my BC.

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BRANDI0074 11/11/2010 2:39PM

    I have lost almost 200 pounds. The only changes I noticed in my cycle was, mine became a bit lighter. I was never been one to have a very heavy one anyway. I did notice I am a bit moodier, I don't know if this has to do with getting older or the weight loss.

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My First RACE REPORT!!! Hot Chocolate 5K - November 6, 2010

Monday, November 08, 2010

It's called "The Sweetest Race In Chicago" and for my first venture into the world of "competitive running" it honestly could not have been a better day.

The festivities began on Friday evening with race packet pick-up at Union Station in Chicago. I planned to meet Kathy (LOTUSFLOWER, and the instigator of this whole journey for me) downtown with her sisters after work. To my surprise, I also got a call from Jen (JENJESS48) and her husband Patrick who were flying in from D.C. for the race saying that they had arrived in town and would meet me at the pick-up area. The excitement started. Not only was I going to be running my very first 5K the next morning, but I was meeting a bunch of Sparkfriends for the first time as well. I couldn't tell which I was more nervous/excited about!

After a bunch of phone calling and messaging back and forth we all found one another in the Great Hall of Union Station. Hugs were had all round and we browsed the fun running goods (i.e Bondi Bands!). Jen and Pat and I were all hungry, so we parted ways with Kathy and her crew and agreed to meet them in the morning at our planned meet-up place. We headed to The Berghoff - a Chicago institution - for dinner (a first for me even though I have lived in the city for 7 years now!). Jen had been there before on a school trip and is also of German heritage so she wanted to revisit an old stomping ground. I enjoyed a wonderful chicken, zucchini and potato galette dish, and one potato perogi - just enough carbs to consider myself "loaded" for the next morning - hehe. We called it a night early and all left to go try to catch some zzzs. Unfortunately, I got all the way to the train before I realized I had left my brand new tech jacket in the restaurant and had to go back just before they locked the doors to grab it. Minor set-back. I was home within 45 minutes and on my way to bed.

Surprisingly enough for all the nervous excitement of the day before, I slept pretty well. I awoke to my alarm at 6am, quite literally smiled to myself, and jumped out of bed, raring to go. I dressed quickly in the tech clothes I had laid out the night before and put on the kettle for tea. By 6:30am I was out the door into the pitch dark and freezing cold. Good lord - runners are CRAZY PEOPLE! The bus was at the corner and I didn't want to miss it so I jogged to make it on - we'll consider that a warm-up run. A quick look around told me I was not alone - lots of tech gear, lots of brown "Will Run For Chocolate" jackets. And here we go! By the time we got to the train I had finished my tea and was actually quite warm despite the temperature outside. I only waited momentarily for the Red Line to the city with about 40 other people on the platform all headed in the same direction. When the train finally arrived I had to laugh. This is what 30,000 runners looks like on public transportation! It was not even 7am and the train was PACKED with athletes of all colours, shapes and sizes, all gearing up for the big race. And I was one of them. I was so proud.

Off the train and headed to the meeting place to meet-up with the rest of my Sparkies! Kathy is already there, as is Shelley (FARLEY_GIRL) and Mel (MELMEI) who was running with her work team but waiting to give me a quick hug before she dashed off to be with them. We were joined shortly by Andrea (ANDREA963) and Jen & Pat. A couple of girls that we were expecting didn't show, but I didn't have real contact info for everyone so we had to move on. (I found out later that JESSSPARK's hotel alarm clock had failed her and she almost didn't make the race and JMEPAYNE woke up with a bad fever and chills - poor girl). A quick stop in a hotel bathroom to pull off my warm-up jacket and put on my Spark shirt and my bib and we were off. A little later than I wanted to be, we walked over the bridge to the massive crowd of people. I ran off to gear check to get rid of my bag and coats just as I heard them playing the national anthem and getting ready to race. My pulse quickened. I had lost Kathy already and Jen, Pat & Shelley were walking the race so I promised to meet up with them post-race in front of the fondue tents. I nearly threw my stuff at the poor guy in the gear check tent and hustled my butt to the large crowd of people who had now just started to move. I reminded myself to breathe as I squeezed through the fence at the 13 minute mile marker. I looked around - people as far as the eye could see, but no sign of any of my friends. This is where I have to go it alone. I put my iPod headphones in my ears, cranked my warm-up tunes, and started walking forward with the group towards the start line willing the tears to just hold off a little while longer. I was overcome with emotion. "Just run your own race, and take it all in".

I made sure to get in front of a couple of the official photographers - just in case, I needed to make sure that this moment was documented.



All of a sudden I heard a huge group of people around me cheering and I looked over to see Dr. Oz waving at all of us. Once again I had to fight back tears. How awesome is it that he would come to the race and wish us all well. We walked for about another 4 minutes getting just to the 9 minute per mile marker when I heard the crowd cheer again. I looked to my left at the finish line to see the elite male runners FINISHING the 5K!!! At a 5 minute per mile pace these guys just ran the whole thing in about 15 minutes. Holy crap! It definitely gave me a burst of energy to see them come across the finish line as I looked ahead of me at the start line. I selected my running mix on my iPod, took a deep breath, and started running!

I felt really good for the first mile except that my nervous energy had sapped every single ounce of spit from my body so my mouth was insanely dry. Since the water station wasn't until mile 2, there was nothing I could really do about it but keep running. It was tough dodging through the slower runners and walkers at the beginning, but it definitely kept things interesting so I wasn't actually thinking much about pain, or breathing, or worrying that I wasn't going to make it. In fact, I didn't even see the first mile marker, so I have no idea what my time was going into mile 2. At that point, we were all herded under and underpass and the going got a little dicey for a bit, so I was more concerned about keeping my footing and running on the pavement instead of grass or the road median for about half a mile anyway. Unfortunately, the race coordinators decided to put the water station for the 5K at the narrowest part of the path, so the bottleneck it caused forced everyone to slow to almost a complete walk. I was getting a little frustrated at this point because I desperately wanted to keep my pace which was impossible, but I did my best to dodge around as many people as I could and kept running. The second half of mile 2 has consistently been my weakest point, so to slow down right there when I was already fighting to keep running was so difficult. But I pushed through as best I could, ran past the water station and rounded the bend past the Shedd Aquarium.



The third mile of the run was changed at the last minute to be a short run up the Lakeshore trail with a hairpin turn and a run back along the upper section of the same path. In my books, this was the worst part of the race. Everyone was already coming out of a bottleneck (I actually almost tripped over a woman that was walking the race with a cane) and picking up speed to attempt a good time for the last mile. The hairpin turn was literally a straight climb up a grass hill to the upper part of the trail which completely killed my momentum. I was beat by the time I got to the top and turned around to run back the distance I had just come. I let my defeatist attitude win only momentarily at the top of the hill as I slowed to a walk for about 5 seconds to catch my breath before I pushed myself harder than I have ever done before and willed my legs to just keep running. Thankfully at that point the way ahead of me cleared. Too many people still stuck back at the water station I guess. Also could have been because the path finally widened to a double lane road and I smiled for the cameras as I ran towards the home stretch. Everything in me wanted to stop running. The finish line was further away than the starting line, so we had to cross over the starting line again at the 3 mile mark and keep running for that last point one of a mile. Just keep running, just keep running. I could hear my regular running music come to an end. My cool down song came on as the finish line got closer and closer. 39 minutes, 30 seconds. That's how long my running mix is. If I can just finish this race in the next 30 seconds I might be able to still pull this in under 40 minutes. Push. Do it! It was all I had left in me to throw my arms in the air as I crossed the finish line.



And then an emotion came over me that I didn't expect. I was actually a little bit angry. I was angry for having to slow down during the race. I was angry that the crowd in front of me wasn't moving fast enough. I was angry that the first station was Gatorade when all I really wanted was a bottle of water. I finally made it to the water, grabbed a bottle and squeezed through the fence. Freedom. I walked a lap around Buckingham Fountain - the skyline and the sunshine and the lake in the distance. I walked to a park bench, all alone for the throngs of people behind me. I listened to my favorite cool down song as I stretched on the park bench. And THEN it hit me. I did it. I finished. I ran the whole thing (except for those 5 seconds which we'll never mention again, which had everything to do with the trail and nothing to do with me being incapable of running). I had just completed my first 5K!

I turned back to look at the crowd and the world clicked back into motion. I needed to get to the gear tent so that I could get to my cell phone and find out how Kathy did and where she was. On the way back I stopped to have my finisher's photo taken.



That felt good. Really good. I made it to the gear tent and apologized to the guy I threw my stuff at earlier. And thankfully - he returned all of it to me unscathed (which was a concern earlier). I grabbed my phone and immediately called Kathy. She was already in the fondue line, so I walked over to find her and ran into another friend of mine who had just run. We hung out and chatted for a bit and posed for the cameras that were milling around. Kathy finally found us and we headed through the tents to pick up our fondue.


Kathy, Me and my friend Ashley


Me and Kathy's family


Kathy & Me :)

Let me tell you - chocolate never tasted SO good. Here's a pic of what we got in the fondue tray - apples, banana, a pretzel rod, marshmallows and pound cake. Yum! I wanted to stick my face in that vat of warm, melty goodness.



By the time we were finished with our snack we were all pretty cold. Though the sun did manage to come out, the temperature was still frigid. Kathy's family left and we went to find Jen & Pat so that we could go out for breakfast. We walked back over to Buckingham Fountain for a few photos and to have our official finisher's photos taken with the group.


Pat, Kathy, Jen & myself


Spark Girls together in Grant Park


Charlie's Angel Style!


Jen & Pat by the fountain

Then we headed to Yolk for a very SEXY breakfast. Seems that everyone at the race had the same brilliant idea that we did, so the wait was a little long because the restaurant was PACKED.


Waiting outside Yolk for a table

But they were working that room like pros and had us in and out amazingly efficiently and never made us feel rushed. We deserved every ounce of that food by the time it got to the table. I had Zamboni Crepes (eggs, ham & spinach rolled into a crepe) with a side of potatoes and Hollandaise sauce. So delicious I took half of it home to enjoy again the next day!


My Sexy Breakfast


Jen & Pat with their Sexy Breakfasts


Kathy and I with our Sexy Breakfasts

The tiredness was really kicking in by the time we were done with breakfast and Kathy had to catch a train back to the suburbs. I walked Jen & Pat back to their hotel and we parted ways. Such a great group of people. I am so happy that my first race was with SparkPeople and with those particular SparkPeople! They are all so wonderful. I can't wait to do it again!

Any frustration or anger I felt after the race has completely washed away. Though MANY people had the same experience, I do believe that the race next year will have a separate corral for the walkers, which seemed to cause the biggest hiccups this year. Also - the race was completely sold out at 30,000 people! Last year was only half of that. So while the whole event was VERY well organized from start to finish, the sheer number of participants were bound to cause slow zones on that tiny of a path. I'm looking forward to running again next year. Maybe by then I will show up to do the 15K! I'd say this was a really great first race for me. My official time was 40:16. I was aiming for under 40, but given the slow zones it still means that I was running at just under a 13 minute mile. I'll take it. Here are my official stats:



If anyone wants to see my official race photos, they are at www.marathonfoto.com - you just have to type in my bib number (10948) and my last name (Kincaid).

All in all - I'm happy. I'm a runner and I ran my first 5K with SparkPeople. And 6 months ago - I couldn't say any of that!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TEENY_BIKINI 11/20/2010 7:27AM

    I am so so so proud of you. What an accomplishment. Here's to many more. Is there anything you can't do?!

You rock like crazy and that fondue tray - does it get any better? Loved it.

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JESSSPARK 11/12/2010 12:25PM

    This totally echoes my experience with this race. Given the stuff SAID you should be able to maintain a 15 min/mile pace I don't know what was going on with all the walkers. I figured it was my fault for almost missing the race and being stuck at the back as a result but it sounds like it was a problem all the way through. The fondue was sure great though! :)

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WILD22 11/11/2010 9:10PM

    Great story telling. Congrats on your race!! Can't wait to do my first run in March 2011

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LOTUSFLOWER 11/10/2010 10:57AM

    Hey, Spark didn't notify me this was up either, I can't believe I'm coming to the party late! Great race report!!!! Jenn, I am so proud of you, I"m going to say it until my lips fall off and I lose my voice. SO VERY PROUD. You ARE a runner, and yes, a CRAZY RUNNER and I am so glad that you and I met through Spark and that you showed me how much fun Zumba would be, and I showed you how exhilarating the thrill of the race could be! Now you're going to be addicted to it, trust me!!

Great pictures, awesome time, and YOU DID IT. emoticon

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ENDUROVET 11/10/2010 10:37AM

    This is terrific! I am hoping to break 42 min for my Turkey Day 5K, but you give me hope...

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WYND10 11/9/2010 3:44PM

    Once more Spark failed to notify me this blog was up...HOWEVER....it was so exciting to read!!!! I am so happy for you. I felt like I was there with you from the telling of it.

Your breakfast looked so NOM, and forget about that fondue tray... :D.

I just want you to know you're an inspiration to me. Thank you for that. You keep me going. Even when I really don't want to keep going :).


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LAURIETAIT 11/9/2010 3:29PM

    emoticon on the first 5K. Chocolate at the finish line, what a great incentive. I hope the high you're feeling lasts a good long time. You are AWESOME!
PS Love the pics. Esp. the Charlie's Angels pose.

Comment edited on: 11/9/2010 3:30:00 PM

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KRAWRS 11/9/2010 2:28PM

    Wow... thank you for sharing this with us. Sounds like you did a GREAT job even with the hiccups. This was a pleasure reading about your success. Go you!

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KT-NICHOLS-13 11/9/2010 12:42PM

    Way to go, You did it! Awesome job girl.
I'm loving those photo's.

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SLFRISBEY 11/9/2010 12:23PM

    AWESOME!!!! You did GREAT! I want to get under 45 mins in my next 5K and NOT STOP! You did it!!! Next year if you want to try to organize another run go for the Ravenswood Run (it's usually in April, so it's an early one! and the money raised goes toward the Ravenswood Food Pantry).

YEA for YOU!!!

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KITHKINCAID 11/9/2010 11:42AM

    Thanks Shelley! Just to be clear - I'm not mad at the walkers at all! Man - that lady with the cane walking the whole thing - good for her - that's amazing. I just wish the race organizers had been smarter about the starting corrals so that the walkers didn't have to do their race being shoved out of the way and tripped over by the runners. I walked the AIDS 5K in October and some of the walkers actually got yelled and sworn at by people - that's just not nice. Walking a race is JUST as good as running it - hey - at least you showed up - and I think too often the walkers are ignored and pushed to the side when they should get their own start corral the same as the runners do!

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FARLEY_GIRL 11/9/2010 11:34AM

    It was great to meet you guys on Saturday!!!! I really wish things had worked out differently for breakfast and staying w/ Jen & Pat....but that's the problem when you are trying to work things out between 2 groups :( I know people were a little po'd about us walkers...but hey -- we were there going the same distance!! We all have to start somewhere :-) Andrea got me to jog a little bit...but I didn't make it to far. I can go farther and longer walking - why do I have to run? LOL! :-)

Congratulations on RUNNING YOUR FIRST 5K!!!!!! Thats a tremendous accomplishment and one you should be PROUD of!!!!

Comment edited on: 11/9/2010 11:35:55 AM

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MNGIRLIE 11/9/2010 11:03AM

    Congrats to you on finishing your first 5k! It was great to read about it and see all your photos. You did amazing. And, I think you would definitely have gotten under 40 minutes had the course been a little more open in those bottleneck areas!

Thanks for sharing your story with us! You did amazing!

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RIGBY31 11/9/2010 10:49AM

    Reading this, I felt I was there with you.. joy..anger..elation! You have truly inspired me to make this a goal. Honestly!

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STEPHANIE0982 11/9/2010 10:47AM

    Congrats!!! I do my first 5K on December 26/10 - a little nervous but very excited!

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JMEPAYNE 11/9/2010 10:00AM

    what a great blog! congrats on finishing your first 5k! many of my friends ran the 15k and a few did the 5k... everyone complained about the crowded courses, i mean 30000 people ran the dang thing! and every single person i know had a worse time than what they normally run. so, i bet given better conditions you would have been well under 40mins.

i'm still bummed about missing it, but i'm already thinking about races for next spring!

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-POOKIE- 11/9/2010 6:47AM

    emoticon Amzing blog! Really cool!

You look so happy!

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CHICAT63 11/9/2010 5:10AM

    Woohoo, congratulations. Awesome pics ! Way to go, the first of many I am sure. Dogging, swerving and avoiding people becomes natural after a while. Keep it up emoticon emoticon

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SGRAY478 11/9/2010 2:12AM

    So proud of you. I was honest to God just inspired to find a 5K for myself to compete in. Thanks for writing about your experience! I am sure you will find the races addicting like so many others have!

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COUNTRYNINJA 11/8/2010 11:41PM

    That is so awesome!!! LOVE the pics!
I did my 2nd 5K yesterday and I think I'm a little addicted!
Keep up the good work!
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Well...THAT didn't go quite as planned!

Thursday, November 04, 2010

You ever have one of those nights where EVERYTHING goes wrong? Tonight was that night for me. It's Wednesday, which means it's swim night. The day went relatively well and so I was looking forward to the pool. I stay late at work on Wednesdays so I can go right from work to the Rec. Center, so when 6:30pm rolled around I started packing up. Not so fast - a company came in for rehearsal that was supposed to have a tech of their show tonight. My tech guy is nowhere to be found. Crap - it must have slipped my mind to remind him to be in tonight. No worries - I'll just go up to the theatre and set a quick light and sound cue for them. It will be fine. ONE HOUR later after a phone call to 2 different people to try to get help with the control boards in the space I was finally able to give the company what they needed for tonight. I made a mad dash for the door, just as I heard what sounded like a heard of elephants crashing on the second floor. It's 7:35pm so I yelled at my House Manager to deal with it and ran down the street to catch my bus. Traffic is heavy, so I don't get to the pool until 8:05pm (swim time starts at 8). By this point my stomach is seriously growling. Usually on swim nights I leave around 7pm and grab a latte to get me through my exercise before I get dinner when I'm done. No time for a latte tonight, but I've done it without before, so I just power through it. I throw on my suit and get into the pool by 8:15pm. OK - 45 minutes to swim. I can do this. The only problem now is that one of the synchronized swim team members who practice at the same time is in my lane doing his buoyancy exercises. Fine - I go one lane over and start my routine. But I'm SO used to swimming in the same lane I keep wandering and hitting the rope with my hands as I'm doing front crawl. Just push through it - tonight is about dealing with challenges. Lap 7 - I'M TIRED. I really needed that latte. Shut up and swim - talk to me again when you hit Lap 20. Lap 18 - I'M REALLY TIRED. Nope - talk to me again when you hit Lap 30. Now pool-boy is wandering over to MY side of the line and he actually just hit me. Ignore it. Just keep swimming. You're running out of time. Lap 46 - a kid decides to race her friend across the pool in the opposite direction of the lanes and slams into me. Not even an apology! Ok - clearly my blood sugar is low because now I'm CRANKY and tired. Lap 50 - seven minutes left to do 5 crawl laps and 5 breast stroke. Crap - breast stroke take me a full minute per lap. Just swim. Fight the challenges. You can do this. But you're not going to have time to stretch in the pool. That's fine - you can stretch in the shower. Yes! 60 laps - 45 minutes. I did it. I jumped out of the pool right at the hour mark and headed for the showers...oh jeez - really should have eaten something. I'm really faint, can't catch my breath. I wager that eating is more important than showering completely at this point so I stretched out quickly, washed my hair and got out of the steam before I passed out. I was really weak putting on my clothes, but I managed to get packed up and by the time I got out the door and grabbed a drink of water I was feeling a bit better. Alright - on to Subway. The toughest part of the night is over. I walked up the street to my usual Wednesday fine-dining experience...a full footlong turkey & ham sub from Subway - cause I deserve it at this point. Yet as I near the door I can see that something isn't right. A huge sign in the window greets me "Will Re-Open on Nov 4". WHAT???? NOOOOOOOOO!!! Now what? Jimmy John's across the street still has lights on. I hurry over. Also closed. I take a quick look around - McDonalds, or walking all the way back down past the pool to Potbelly's and risk that being closed as well. Nope. Just head to Walgreen's. I need toilet paper anyway and I can grab a small snack until I can get home. So I head into the store and proceed to wander the aisles for a full 10 minutes. I can't think at this point so I can't decide what to eat. I was going in for the small packages of raw almonds, but they were out. So I went and grabbed the t.p. thinking that I could make up my mind on the way back. Still nothing I really want. I finally gave up, walked to the cash and grabbed a full can of Deluxe Mixed Nuts (my nemesis) on the way. As I'm cashing out and walking to the door - I see my bus pulling away from the stop. It is now 9:45pm - buses slow down after 9 so I know I'm in for a LONG wait. I check the bus tracker. The next bus is "Delayed" which means it could be another 20 minutes. OMG. I open the can of nuts and pour out what I deem to be a 1/4 cup serving in my hand. They might be my nemesis, but I'll be darned if I'm going to sit here and eat the whole bloody can because I'm starving and angry. Salty nuts...never occurred to me to grab a drink while I was in the store - now I'm thirsty. A teen mother of twins beside me is yelling profanities at her two small children in a twin stroller. The kids are trying to play a game with each other and so the one keeps turning around in his seat. She keeps coming over, picking him up and slamming him back into the stroller seat yelling things at him I'm quite sure he has no comprehension of. At least I hope he doesn't a such a young age. The sad part is that he probably does know exactly what all those words mean. LORD - Please send me a bus...and soon! 14 minutes later the bus arrives. I'm finally on my way home. The nuts have helped a bit. OK - last ditch effort - it's not exactly health conscious, but I'll grab a sandwich at the Cuban restaurant across the street from my house. Deal. I'm loving the sound of that. The bus pulls up to my stop - lights at the Cuban place are out. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! FINE! Just FINE! I'll go home and raid my fridge. 10:30pm - I now have a chicken caesar salad in a bowl and 2 glasses of almond milk. I'm logging into Spark to prevent me from inhaling this meal so fast I can barely breathe. Tracking my calories consumed. Lettuce and chicken in a bowl - no WAY I can be anywhere near the number of calories I have left for the day. I was planning on a full footlong - so I should be able to have a bowl of ice cream too - for all my troubles. Would you believe that stinkin' salad just put me OVER my calorie limit for the day? Nuts to this! No - NUTS to the NUTS! It was the darn handful of nuts that put me over. Or the two glasses of almond milk. Whatever - I'm over for the day. No ice cream for me. I'm typing this now so that I can bide the time until my stomach decides that it's full because what I really want to do is eat the whole tub of animal crackers sitting on my counter. Or the nuts. I could eat the whole can of nuts. But I won't. I'll brew a cup of tea and turn off the kitchen light and go into the other room. Besides, now it's bedtime. So much for the "best laid plans". Blargh. Thanks for letting me vent Sparkies. Tomorrow better be a better day. Nuff said.

P.S. "Don't go to bed angry"
- I am thankful for my swim cause I swam a full 60 laps in 45 minutes which is amazing.
- I am thankful I thought enough in advance to have a chicken caesar salad ready in the fridge.
- I am thankful that that woman with the twins was not my mother.
- I am thankful for the challenges from tonight because overcoming them only makes me stronger - and maybe I needed tonight so that I can be positive that whatever happens at my race on Saturday - I can and will power through!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TEENY_BIKINI 11/5/2010 10:18PM

    SIXTY LAPS!~! You are a machine. I love your determination. And talk about focus. Dang!

Go girl!

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What an exciting life?! And you sure can pack a lot into a day. Nicely done :)

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SARABLUE69 11/5/2010 12:44PM

   
wow i think i would have ditched my swim. That's so awesome. I got alot of inspiration out of your blog. I justa came by to say hello.

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MEADSBAY 11/4/2010 9:43PM

    Love that you ended your horrible-no-good-very-bad day with notes of gratitude!
I once ate 500 calories of mixed nuts between the store and home because I let myself get so hungry like that- and I wasn't even having a stressful day like you!
You're amazing!
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KATISCARLET 11/4/2010 3:29PM

    That was just life throwing you a little "keep you on your toes" challenge. You totally rocked it, too!

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AUTUMNPOTTER 11/4/2010 3:16PM

    You did it, you made it through and was better than I would have been. It would have been a Snickers bar for me at Walgreen's. I'm so happy you were able to get your laps in though. And I'm also glad the woman with the twins is not my mother either.

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CALLIKIA 11/4/2010 3:05PM

    "I am thankful that that woman with the twins was not my mother." *roflmao*

You did amazingly well! Every road block, every challenge, you hit it head on and kept going. You may not have realized it last night, but I hope you do in the light of morning today -- you did an amazing thing last night! One HUGE step in the right direction!

*LOVE* it!

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KRAWRS 11/4/2010 1:57PM

    OH.... MY... GOD..... You are seriously... seriously... SUPERWOMAN!!!! I wouldn't have handled even HALF that as beautifully as you did! FANTASTIC job! I'm SO impressed! Oh well, so the nuts (or the milk) put you over... you did amazing! Its ok. Its just one day.

I love, also, that you didn't "go to bed angry." Thats a lot to be thankful for, truly!

You deserve a emoticon after all that!

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KT-NICHOLS-13 11/4/2010 12:25PM

    Now that was one crazy evening you had and survived! Great job on dealing with all the challenges and keeping your head about you. Lovin' your Thankful list.

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RIGBY31 11/4/2010 11:52AM

    After such a tough swim, choosing nuts over McD's was awesome! I'm sure your body feels alot better this morning for it!!
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WYND10 11/4/2010 10:54AM

    Wow, that sounds like one heck of a night lady. I am sorry the things your wanted to work out didn't, however, congratulations for getting everything done. Better, Stronger, Faster! You're amazing.

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JENJESS48 11/4/2010 10:44AM

    Whew, what an evening! Major kudos for you for not letting it derail you. I probably would have. Actually, I would have skipped the swim outright, lol. My little red devil won last night: I had a pre-migraine and totally caved to the sugar/carb craving. I ate a half pint of Ben & Jerry's fro-yo! Ugh. Migraines and their ugly predecessors are the one time I can't control myself. At all. :(

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CUPCAKE02 11/4/2010 10:00AM

    what a day! so glad to see you were able to overcome and deal with everything. i love that you found some positives, too. here's to a new day!!!

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-POOKIE- 11/4/2010 7:39AM

    emoticon What a horrible day.

Your positives list was a good idea though!

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CHICAT63 11/4/2010 5:26AM

    Oh, my what a day....." I try to take it one day at a time, but sometimes several days attack me at once. " - Jennifer Unlimited. Woohoo that you turned several negatives into positives, be proud !

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LAURIETAIT 11/4/2010 1:37AM

    We all have lousy days like this but you were strong and made good choices. Well done. Awesome swim too. I also resent all those poor souls whose mothers never taught them proper pool etiquette. Have a great sleep emoticonand a much better tomorrow.

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CASMOH 11/4/2010 12:39AM

    emoticon Sorry for the day, but glad to see the positive spin you were able to put on it! Hoping tomorrow is better.

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The Hardest Part of the Day, or Owner of a Hungry Heart

Monday, November 01, 2010

It's the middle of the afternoon on a Monday. The weekend is over, the work week has only just begun, and I'm hungry. But not really hungry. Not stomach growling, need to eat for sustenance hungry. Bored hungry, sad hungry, tired hungry, too much past week indulgence hungry. In short - my heart is hungry, and I know that nothing I do right now is going to feed it.

It's the hardest part of the day for me. The neediness that comes with wrapping up the current day's work projects, the thought/dread of going home and having to put something healthy on the table for dinner, alone, and the knowledge that the most exciting thing I have to do tonight is watch television and scoop the litter box. Mama said there'd be days like this. And if my social calendar were full up, I'd be complaining about that too, I'm sure of it. But the fact of the matter is that now that the show is over, it's very, very empty.

So how do you fix a hungry heart? And worse yet, how do I fix a heart that's been hungry for over a week now?

I'm still hung up on my parents' visit from last weekend. I said it wasn't going to get to me, I said I wasn't going to let them in, let them carve out a little piece of me and take it back to Canada - but the fact of the matter is that they did. And I've been eating all week to fill that hole. For those who haven't read my past blogs about mom & dad, know that I love my parents dearly. I had a wonderful childhood and upbringing. But in every happy family, there are demons. And mine are big. And come in the shape of a very obese, very unhappy woman. A woman that I am trying every day to part ways with. But their visits remind me of who she was and still is, and it hurts.

Until last weekend my parents had no idea that I was losing weight. I needed it to be that way. I still need it to be that way. I don't think I was emotionally ready for that visit. But I also know that I can't go on hiding from them. And even if I did - even if I was able to lose 200 pounds and then magically reappear in front of them, I'd probably be worse off for it at that point than I will be having to work through seeing them occasionally as I move down the scale. The next visit is Christmas. I've got 2 months. But if I carry on like I have been this past week, I won't be any different in 2 months than I am today. So I HAVE to get over this feeling and move on with myself and my plans - regardless of how much they know, or how much they care. This journey isn't for them. It's for me. And I need to reclaim my power that they have a way of stripping me of.

I have also officially crossed over in to the "noticeable weight loss" category. Every person that I encounter who I haven't seen in a while makes a comment about it. I'm not having an easy time of this. Because, while I'm losing weight and gaining confidence and thinking I'm beautiful and wonderful, I'm still not thin enough or pretty enough or confident enough to undo my social awkwardness. No amount of weight loss is going to change that. And having people comment on my appearance only makes that nervous anxiety worse. And it makes me want to eat. I don't connect easily with people. Or rather, my "social spark plugs" seem to be constantly firing to make those necessary connections, but they aren't being met on the other side by any interested parties. If they are met, the social engine turns over a couple of times and then fizzles out quick. And lord help me if I'm not seeking that dull roar, the hum of an engine that's got substantial fuel and oil and is prime to take off and DRIVE.

But waiting for that lifelong road trip is currently very lonely. I'm crushing hard on a guy who has issues of his own and A) isn't interested though he's a constant flirt, and B) isn't emotionally available anyway. I'm 3 weeks away from going to see The Scientist in Germany - a relationship that is over, sort of, but will likely rekindle for the 2 weeks that I'm there, so I will only have to break his heart all over again when I leave. I don't have the heart to tell him that I haven't missed him as much as I think he's missed me since he left in August. And I'm worried about re-visiting our physical relationship in Germany because it's only going to make the inevitable separation that much worse when I leave. With no more plans to see each other again after this trip, it's over when I get on that plane home. And then there's just the voice in my head that keeps telling me that I should just be single right now - as lonely and miserable as it is. I don't believe that I'm capable of meeting someone right now who will be right for me in the long run anyway. I have too many things left to sort out, too much work to be done on myself, and if I bring someone in to the middle of this mess, it's not fair to him when I become a different person at the end of this process.

All of this would be better if I had better friends. But there's where I also fail in the social department. 100s of acquaintances, not one real friend. Not one person out there who really knows me inside and out, accepts me for everything I am and want to be, and who shares with me a mutual respect, love and deference. And to tell the honest truth, I've never had one of these. Ever. Ever. I don't really know what a real, true, friendship even looks like, or feels like. My mother stood in the way of all of my burgeoning friendships growing up, and to an effect, still does to this day since she taught me early that my only real, true friend in this world should be her. So I never really developed an ability to make my own friends. Any takers? Haha. I'm working on this. But you can't make friends overnight - so until I do, I still have to find good coping mechanisms for the inevitable loneliness that is a result of living in a big, bad city, hundreds of miles from my family, and all alone. Sure there are social outings with my numerous acquaintances, but I have just discovered, unfortunately, that those outings always leave me disappointed and unfulfilled which then leads to unexplained eating - trying to fill that void that those faulty relationships simply can't.

No wonder my heart is hungry. No wonder I've been pushing the upper limits of my calorie range almost every day this past week. No wonder I craved and ate chocolate all weekend. Food is predictable. Food gives me the same result every time I go to it. Food is always there. Food doesn't talk back. Food doesn't throw a loop in my plans. Food doesn't break my heart. Food is reliable. People are not. People change. People can be mean. People's schedules change, and they can leave you stranded when you need them the most. With people you have to be forgiving. But I am a person. And that means that I need to forgive myself. My relationship with me is the most difficult relationship that I will ever forge. And my relationship with everyone else will follow. People are unpredictable. But that's why they are also wonderful. And learning to adapt and forgive and let go of that constant need to control is all a part of this journey. It is incredibly painful. But it is necessary.

I'm deep into the hardest part of the day. And it's not likely to get better over the next few hours. But I know what I'm up against. I have my list of things I want to accomplish tonight, this week and certainly by Christmas. And these are the things I CAN control. Day by day, forging this new relationship with myself. And learning how to feed my hungry heart without food.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TEENY_BIKINI 11/5/2010 10:33PM

    Gosh. Every time I read about your heart and feelings in your blogs I can so relate to every word. I have been thinking about that friend thing for weeks now - I am just mulling over some my relationships now and questioning the authenticity [whatever that means]...

Any sane person would be proud to have your gorgeous self as a friend or anything else - including me. I just think you are so cool. So cool.

I wish I had the answer for the hungry heart ... and I hope you find it though.

Fantastic blog. Just fantastic. How can you lose with that kind of pure willingness to confront the intricacies of living. Yup, you are awesome.

Gosh - I just adore you. Hang in there, boo.

XO

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THINWITHIN18 11/4/2010 10:01PM

    This is a wonderful, insightful blog that clearly came from your heart. What you are feeling may seem specific to you but I think so much of it is universal. You are worth it, you are beloved and you will find your joy. Spark on!
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MANLEYSANDY 11/2/2010 4:56PM

    It takes so much courage and fortitude to pour out your heart like this, and it is the best medicine to cure a lonely heart.

I feel blessed that you are sharing your life and journey with your spark friends, and please know you can call me friend.

You are all beautiful, and wonderful, and are those things more no matter what the number is on the scale....

I truly mean every word I say, and I want to BELIEVE it!

Hugs,
Sandy

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KRAWRS 11/2/2010 3:56PM

    Awww... this blog was so amazing. Its so good that you are able to be so honest with yourself. This paragraph really resonated with me:
"I don't connect easily with people. Or rather, my "social spark plugs" seem to be constantly firing to make those necessary connections, but they aren't being met on the other side by any interested parties. If they are met, the social engine turns over a couple of times and then fizzles out quick. And lord help me if I'm not seeking that dull roar, the hum of an engine that's got substantial fuel and oil and is prime to take off and DRIVE."

I understand this. The few new friends I have made have either disappointed me or have never transcended the "aquaintance" feeling. I am sorry for your lack of best friend... I remember the days when I had a whole group, about 3 or 4 of us usually, and we had sleepovers and such and... well, I'm just sad you never got to experience that. I am lucky to have one best friend, but it is a far cry from those few who fell by the wayside.... betrayal, fights, growing up, etc. And even she lives so far away! I miss the day to day kind of best friend...(Know, too, that people... even best friends... disappoint. Its how you work past that issue, get over it, forgive, and move on stronger in your relationship... thats what makes a BEST friend.)

Its funny, how we all have these voids to fill. How relatable, I suppose.

In any case, try to enjoy yourself, those little life pleasures you do have... and keep on firing those social sparks.. you never know what might happen as a result!

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ESSENCEOFM 11/2/2010 3:00PM

    I seriously hate the afternoons. Haven't figured out why though. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact I haven't accomplished as much as I would like. The afternoon feels like my day is over and once again another day has gone by with me not getting done what I set out to do! UGGGGH!

I am totally a social tard. I think it's because I have been hurt and disappointed by a few too many women. Perhaps my expectations are too high. I would love to believe we get out of our relationships what we put into them but that is not always the case.

For instance, in Feb. 2010 a friend of mine put together a group of women (20 of us on a private FB page) whom she believed would benefit from posting and encouraging and praying for each other, in our daily struggles with weight and any other struggles we face. In the beginning a few women had participated (most members have still yet to post 1 thing) eventually the posts became more infrequent and now about 2-3 of us who are regular posters still make comments.

It is disappointing because I exposed myself. I felt here I was laying out my heart and most of the others couldn't be bothered with posting! Needless to say, support and encouragement were pretty non-existent, considering the very purpose for the group was to encourage and support. Basically what I am saying I put a lot of me into that group because I believed in its purpose, I put in so much more than the majority and got very little in return. Now don't get me wrong, I realize other people are not as open as I, but come on, why join a group then not participate? Just sayin'!

I think we need other women in our life, we need that camaraderie. I hope that you learn to fill that void with something other than food. I know that we live in different cities and I am sure I am older than you by a dozen years, but I can be your friend or at least one of many you are sure to gain from this blog alone.

Your soul is beautiful! Know this! Know that NOT everyone can express themselves as well as you, it takes a special gift!

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M

Comment edited on: 11/2/2010 3:03:13 PM

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WYND10 11/2/2010 1:47PM

    And again I am left with this feeling that we should live closer together. (Seems to be the case with a lot of people I know that hail from Canada these days)

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People are hard. Making friends, true friends, is hard. But I know you're amazing. You're going to make it through this rough patch. In fact, you're going to come out the other side shining more brightly than you are right now. I wish you food for the soul, and peace.

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SLFRISBEY 11/2/2010 9:49AM

    (((hugs))) I know how you feel. Wish I had some bright words of encouragement to give you. :) I am thinking about you and hoping for the best for you. And if you find a cure for the lonely eating, please pass it along! Its my biggest struggle to date!

p.s. I also am a big fail in the friend department. We should start a Chicago Friends meet up group! :)

Comment edited on: 11/2/2010 9:51:31 AM

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-POOKIE- 11/2/2010 7:35AM

    *hugs*

Im awful at social interation as well, I have one real life friend and my boyfriend, I do well in a one-to-one relationship like that, but I struggle to maintain anything else.

I get lonely, I 'talk' a lot on the internet to make up for it, it isn't always good enough though.

*hugs*

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JMEPAYNE 11/1/2010 9:23PM

    SUPER BIG SQUISHES

don't you wish you could feed the hunger with something else? i think that's really the hardest part. finding something ELSE to fill the hole that isn't food.

since i moved to chicago 4.5 years ago, i have been seriously lacking in my social life. at least, compared to what i had when i lived in texas. i have been fighting to try and make friends here and it seems impossible. i have some friends in the city that i had before moving here... but everyone else seems to flake out or the relationship goes horribly wrong (as in they are bat $hit crazy). i got married over the summer and not a SINGLE "friend" i've made since moving here attended. i had a girl friend fly across an ocean to come, but people couldn't drive an hour and a half to celebrate our marriage. seriously, some couldn't even be bothered to RSVP!
have i mentioned that i gained 40 pounds since moving here? yeah... i'm starting to see the connection. i went from being a super social person to only going out with friends maybe once or twice a month, sometimes not even that. there's a huge hole in my life that i'm trying to figure out how to fix. so, you're not alone in this. i just wish i had a magical answer other than one battle at a time!

you have come so far... there are more demons to kill but you can do it. conquering all these obstacles not only gives you a better, healthier life but it makes you a better person overall, IMO.



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RIGBY31 11/1/2010 8:08PM

    Most of the battle is recognizing what you're going through, and gosh, your blog speaks volumes of your awareness. So even though it may seem like forever (loneliness has an odd effect.. makes time stand still almost!), you are making such progress in your life. And you will be at peace with yourself... everything else will fall into place.
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JENJESS48 11/1/2010 7:41PM

    I heart you so much! Although I haven't experienced everything you're going through, your heartfelt writing makes me feel almost as if I had. Wow, I wish I had your gift. But I do understand loneliness. I was the first person to leave the family farm since the family's founder bought the farm after getting home from the Civil War in 1865. Seriously. Two years after moving away for grad school, I picked up and moved to Washington, D.C. So I understand alone and lonely in the big, scary city. But you know what? You've already show incredible courage and grit to make it as far as you have. You'll do the work you feel that you need to do and go further than you ever thought you would. You're just that kind of person. As for finding love, don't worry so much about it. I met my DH when I was about ready to go looking for an agnostic nunnery, lol. You'll meet Mr. Right at the right time.

In the meantime, emoticon

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LAURIETAIT 11/1/2010 7:22PM

    It's an awful feeling to be lonely. I understand your longing to be in a relationship but it is smart of you to recognize the pitfalls of starting one when you aren't yet the person you're striving to be. When the food is offering you the comfort you seek shut it down and go and do some of the things that have been making a difference for you. When I feel the urge to eat something unnecessary I take a good long walk. Then if I am still jonesing for something when I'm done at least I've burned some of those calories off already. lol Most times though the endorphins kick in and I feel more upbeat and less likely to eat. You've made so many positive changes in your life. When people mention our weight loss just thank them for noticing. You may feel awkward but remember that the fact that they notice and mention it is intended as a compliment. Remember you are a warm, wonderful and worthy person. You are beautiful and deserve all the things you are longing to achieve. Don't sabotage your success. As for true friendship it is precious and more rare than it should be. Try inviting a likely candidate for best friend to do something you both enjoy. There is more opportunity to talk beyond the superficial when it's just two people together. Maybe something will blossom. Wishing you success in overcoming "the hungries". Enjoy the company of a fascinating woman tonight.... YOU! emoticon

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KATISCARLET 11/1/2010 7:14PM

    That was a very deep and soul-searching post you wrote and I have to give you kudos for opening up so much!
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3.1 Miles - A Conversation With Myself

Friday, October 29, 2010

Alarm clock. Beeping. This is the day. Today I'm going to do it. Jesus, it's cold! Woo - like SERIOUSLY cold. Turn the heat on. Bathroom. Wake up. Breathe. Wake up. Breathe. Pet the cat - morning buddy. I'm doing this. I'm going to run. Yoga pants, sports bra, tech shirt, banana, water. Back to the bathroom. Nervous pee. Damn, it is so frickin cold! Socks, shoes, stretch. iPod. Outside - I can see my breath. Breathe. Good. Tuesday was too hot. I like running in the cold. I like that I can see my breath. Hello winter. Out into the world. Cross the street, turn on my tunes. New running mix - awesome. Walk, walk, have to warm up. "We will not be broken, we will be victorious" love Muse. Great warm-up song. Puts me in the right frame of mind. Here we go. Blur - Song 2. WOOHOO! RUN! Breathe, relax your shoulders, warm up the legs. Turn the corner, run through leaves. It's interesting how the wind pools them all like that. REALLY cold. Hello fox lawn ornament. Am I already there? Slow down, pace, pace. About 5 minutes in. How do I feel? Breathing is good. Relax the shoulders. Turn the corner. Sun is shining, starting to warm up now. Sun light through the park fence. It's like a strobe light as I run by. Turn the corner. Long stretch before the one mile marker. "Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger" thanks Kanye. Feeling good. Relax the shoulders. Legs are ok. Breathe deep, imagine any discomfort pushing down through the legs and out through the feet. Settle in. Breathe. One mile. Turn the corner. I hate this stretch. But it's not long - just push through it. Turn the corner. Long haul to Western. You've got this. You feel good. Better than you usually feel at this point. "We've only got 4 minutes to save the world". Do it. Easy does it to Western. Past the school. You used to be dying at this point. Look how amazing you're doing right now. Easy does it to Western. Turn the corner. One block. One more corner. OK - this is the rough patch. You're doing great. Gotta make it back to Hoyne. Damn Hoyne. I hate that street - it's SO far away. Two miles. I've got one left in me for sure. Pace, pace. Just go easy. "So, so what? I'm still a rockstar!" thanks P!NK - you're getting me through this. Only 3 more songs and you're done. One more block - HOYNE! Hallelujah. Turn the corner, one block - hello big doggie and cute owner - yum. Smile, wave...turn the corner, more leaves. Back to Western. This is where C25K training ended. And I'm going the distance this time. I'm doing the WHOLE thing. Pace, pace. Slow down. This isn't a race...well, it IS a race, but not today. Today is about doing it. Coming up on Western now. Still feel good. Not really out of breath. 2.5 miles. Turn the corner. Run home. You got this. Grocery store to home. You can walk that in, like, 4 minutes. Running it is easy. Not thinking about my legs anymore. Settle in. Feet are great. Breathe. Pace, pace. Not cold anymore. Sun is shining. HELL YES I am doing this. I got it. Past home - now it's just about the finish line. Don't speed. Just make it there. 3 blocks. "It makes me that much stronger, thanks for makin' me a Fighter" - bring it home Christina. Just have to run to the end of this song. I can see the last block. I can still see my breath. Finish line! I DID IT!!!

At this point, all by myself on an empty street, I pumped my fist in the air and broke into tears, steam pouring off my body. The feeling of accomplishment and fatigue came over me and I could hardly catch my breath for the sobs escaping my lungs. I slowed to a walk for my favorite cool down songs and just let the tears come. I did it. For weeks I have been so scared that I wouldn't make it to the distance before my race next weekend. I was suffering from negative self-speak, telling myself that I couldn't do it. But - today I did. And now there's nothing left to tell me I can't, because I know I can. I'm still nervous about the race, but today I proved to myself that I can do whatever I want to. I finished with a good stretch and a hot shower. I am beautiful. I am a runner. Bring on next weekend. I can't wait to meet all my SparkFriends and run for chocolate in downtown Chicago!

Official Stats from today:

3.14miles
5 kilometres
39:30

Here's my route (Yep - it's a 5...I'm a geek)


If I can bring it in under 40 minutes next weekend, I'll be ecstatic! I am so proud of what I can do. Never in a million years did I ever think that I would be capable of running 3.1 miles in under 40 minutes. And now that I'm here, it's on to the next hurdle - running a 10K for the start of next year's race season.

Well - just get through the 5K first, Jenn :)

You got it!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KRAWRS 11/2/2010 3:44PM

    You ARE a superstar! Wow! Go you!

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WYND10 11/2/2010 1:39PM

    Woohoo!!!! You're a superstar.

My blog notification is failing me. You've put up two since last I got a notification. OMG!

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LOTUSFLOWER 10/31/2010 3:45PM

    You rock!!!!

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AUTUMNPOTTER 10/31/2010 3:29PM

    AWESOME!!

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MRSSIBRAT 10/31/2010 7:04AM

    so amazing girl!!

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MMS354 10/30/2010 8:06PM

    Yeah! Great job!! All the energy at your race will give you a huge push and your time will astound you. Woo hoo!

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SASSYSUNFLOWER 10/30/2010 9:50AM

    This is an amazing blog, made me teary eyed. Congratulations on your run! I haven't started exercising yet, I need to! I loved the way you took us through the whole run. emoticon

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CHICAT63 10/30/2010 5:16AM

    Woohoo, great playlist way to go ! You are going to rock your 5K, happy running....oh, and you are a RUNNER !

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CALLIKIA 10/30/2010 12:09AM

    So awesome!! You're gonna rock that race!

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MEADSBAY 10/29/2010 8:48PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon
Loved (and liked) this blog!
emoticon

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ESTEPHENSON2 10/29/2010 6:43PM

    Great blog. Great accomplishment. Great Playlist! :)

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KT-NICHOLS-13 10/29/2010 6:35PM

    We shall call you "speedy!" You are amazing and inspiring ...
You're going to do fabulous on race day!!

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JMEPAYNE 10/29/2010 5:44PM

    WOOOHOOOO!!!! what a great accomplishment!!!

congrats girl! you're going to rock that 5k next weekend!


p.s. i used to live off the california blue line stop, not too far from where you are!

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CSDOWNING 10/29/2010 5:32PM

    You go, girl! I'm so proud for you!!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SWEETPEACHY 10/29/2010 4:50PM

    I don't even know you and that brought tears to my eyes. I feel proud of you, ins't that odd? To feel proud of someone you dont even know? Congradulations!

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LAURIETAIT 10/29/2010 4:45PM

    emoticon I have the same goals. I want to run 5k and work up to 10k by June 2011. I really enjoyed your blog. I've had some difficulties since W8D2 and it's great to see someone else succeeding. I hope you have a great race! I'll be thinking of you.
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KARVY09 10/29/2010 4:22PM

    Song 2 and So What are on my playlist too...

You are a super star. What an accomplishment! I remember when you were struggling through W3 of C25K. Look at you now. 5K in under 40 minutes.

Amazing. Simply amazing.

Bravo.

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