Tuesday, September 17, 2013
This entry is much the same as the last. I'm making slow progress. To sum up:
I'm tracking consistently, which is a great victory.
I'm still overworked and overstressed, which is a problem. My wellbeing is suffering for it, as is my motivation, energy level, and willpower. I am hoping that I can recharge in the scraps of downtime (evenings, weekends) and just push on through until I get past these deadlines. It's going to be a long slog. I'm not liking it much. Hopefully I can get more help at work after this round of deadlines. i'm not holding my breath. In fact, I should be doing some deep breathing.
My nutrition is middling... some good choices, some bad choices. Generally my calorie range is acceptable, with a moderate deficit. I should be losing weight slowly. I'm not, but I should be. I need to keep up that deficit. I also need to work on choosing more fruits and veggies and cutting out the treats.
I'm not drinking enough water, particularly early in the day. I need to get back into the habit of having a glass of water first thing.
I haven't stepped up my running the way I'd planned in my last blog. My 10k race in early October is approaching, and I don't think I'll be ready. I'll be able to do it, but I'll be really sore, hopefully not injured. I was going to go for a run on the weekend but didn't get around to it (busy Sat / lazy Sun) and today I was just too tired. My stomach was upset, my body was tired, I hadn't fueled or hydrated enough for a lunch run, my head hurt too much for a 6:30pm finally-got-home run. I am worn out. My tank is empty.
I have been doing my physio "homework" for my shoulders/upper back. The moves aren't getting easier yet, but that takes time, as I'm working my weakest parts. I have not started doing other strength training yet.
I bought a FitBit One last Wednesday and have been wearing it since. It's SO MUCH more convenient than the BodyMedia armband. I'm enjoying it and getting used to the tracking and seeing what it can motivate me to do. My husband and I had been talking about getting a new scale, one that did bodyfat measurements and perhaps other features, so we spent a leftover wedding-gift Future Shop giftcard on the FitBit Aria scale. I've only used it once. It knows who I am, which is a little creepy, and kind of cool. Apparently I'm almost one third fat. I find that hard to picture. Although apparently 25% - 31% is "average" body fat... less than 25% is "fitness" level. Hmph. I have a goal to reach 28%. In time.
... ... ... my cousin is baking pies downstairs right now. It smells really really good.
Saturday, August 24, 2013
This week was a challenge. Work has been stoopid busy - I got a proposal all wrapped up and out the door (and couriered in on time!), managed to pass off one crazy-urgent-on-fire project to a coworker, and have made progress on the other big structural design project I'm working on. (Complex seismic design and soil-structure interaction are still pretty new to me... it's big and imposing and REALLY IMPORTANT I don't screw it up! I don't understand why engineers don't make as much money as doctors... it's about responsibility level, right? if a doctor screws up, one person dies. If an engineer screws up... a whole building can fall down! But let's not think about it.) Anyway. Work has been stressful lately, but I think it's getting better. I was in really bad shape a couple of weeks ago, when my jaw was out of alignment (due to neck/shoulder tension and overnight teeth-clenching). Every red flag that my body could wave was waving, with big banners printed with "I'm overstressed!" flying. Heart palpitations? Oh yes, so many more than usual. Headaches? Brutal. Neck and shoulder tension? Heck yeah. Cranky? Well, of course. It sucked.
But it's getting better. In fact, yesterday I felt high as a kite after my run - I did a fartlek run on the seawall, just picking up the pace and running til the next bend in the seawall, or to the concession stand on the beach, or the lamp post. (I kept it just shy of an all-out sprint, as I'm a little out of shape for that kind of speedwork out of nowhere!) It was exhausting and probably a little over the top, as I was a little light-headed on the way back to the office, but I felt so HAPPY. I was smiling walking around the office after. It was great.
It makes me want to run again. Really run. I bought new shoes a couple of days ago, too, so now I have a good current pair at work and at home, and I just have to remember to bring my orthotics back and forth for my lunch-time runs and my... yes... weekend runs! I'm planning to go either tomorrow or Sunday morning and start working my way back up to longer runs. I'm really only doing about 4k on my weekday runs, which seems so short when I used to do 20k and still have pep in my step after, but it's okay. We all run our own race, and right now, I'm just pleased that I've built up some consistency again, and my body is over that learn-to-run adaptation hump. My bunions still hurt sometimes, but I kind of think it may always be that way. At least the kinesiologist who sold me my new shoes independently confirmed that the last pair I got was working really well for me, and I ended up with the newer version of those. (Just as chunky-looking, with solid granny-sneaker soles. Sooooo not sexy. But they allow me to run, and that's really all I need! Minimalist shoes are for chumps anyway.)
Along with running, I'm also going to get back into strength training. For now, I'm going to start with my physio exercises and lots of stretching. I am going to get my back and shoulders back into shape (heh, "back" into shape) which will help fix the muscular imbalance, ease my tension headaches and allow my tight neck and shoulders to loosen up. I'm also working on my hips, getting my glutes to start working better and my sticky joints to scour out. It will take time, and I understand that, but I've gotten strong before and I can do it again... and perhaps I'll learn my lesson and be better about maintaining my strength and not quitting on my physio "homework" again!
The added bonus is that I'm ready to lose some weight and see a body shape that I like again... my sloppy upper arms in particular are starting to piss me off, and strength training will do both of those things! Or, if it doesn't affect the scale as much as my food choices will, it will make me look smaller. If there's one thing I learned last year, it was that strength training (with heavy weights) makes your body change in ways that dieting, cardio, and less-challenging weights never can!
So here we go. For the past couple of months, I've been running two days a week at lunch (about 35-40 minutes each including walking) and doing yoga one day a week. I've also been doing random bits of activity like paddling, housecleaning, and yardwork as the opportunities/necessities presented themselves. For the past week, I've been increasing the amount of water I drink and tracking my calories.
This coming week I am going to do all of the above, plus go for at least one run from home, being a slightly longer one, and I'm going to strength train focusing on my physio exercises at least three nights (shoulders/pecs, hips/glutes, some runner's strengthening, plus some core work).
Oh - it's also our one year anniversary on Sunday, so I may put on my wedding dress and eat a lot of currently-thawing wedding cake. I pulled the carefully-wrapped top layer out of the freezer tonight (it's a full 8-inch layer cake, three tiers tall, dark chocolate and cappuccino layers with dark chocolate ganachey-buttercream and latte buttercream under yummy fondant which my maid of honour beautifully decorated with royal icing. Nom nom nom!!! I can't wait to make one for that maid of honour's wedding next year!
I may not have reached my goal of fitting back into my wedding dress (by any stretch of the imagination) but I'm making progress: I've been back down to 163.0 for the last two days. That's very good news! Another half pound and the little fishie on my tracker will be 1/4 of the way! I just have to keep that fishie in mind when I'm faced with all this cake... mmmm.
Monday, July 22, 2013
Hullo my chickens, sorry it's been so long. Again.
Does this sound like a repeat of last month's blog yet? Not yet? Don't worry, it will.
I'm struggling to be consistent. It's been an unusually dry July in Vancouver, which basically means it's been pretty perfect. (Roughly 25 degrees and sunny with a little breeze every day!) The weather does make me want to be outdoors, although my skin's getting dried out from daily sunscreening. I keep trying different brands (any recommendations?) and even the latest Aveeno hydrating one is leaving me a bit scaly. But I'm getting out there, regardless.
In fact, I've been pretty consistent in terms of activity. I have been keeping track on a calendar at my office, and in June I was probably active 3 days a week on average. (I had to go check.) Pretty sad, eh? This month we're looking at 6 days a week, although some days it's just my physio exercises and stretching in front of the TV. But that counts. Look, I am building consistency! That's what I was after. That actually makes me pretty happy, comparing to last month... and I wasn't feeling too proud of myself.
Because the scale is up. Even more. I've seen 166 lbs (alternately with 165 and 164-and-change) two or three times now. Pretty bad. I've also changed my settings because I was weighing in daily and the downward fluctuations were sending out automatic "yay I've lost a pound!" messages on my FriendFeed, which weren't really losses. Although I appreciate the SparkFriend kudos, no matter how undeserved they were.
I know why the scale is up. It's not rocket surgery, as they say. I'm eating too much for my level of activity. Too many sweets, too many snacks, not filling up on veggies like I ought to. Fruit? Heck yes... nectarines, cherries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries... it's a lovely time of year to be in BC. We've been visiting the local farmer's market almost every week, too. Such lovely fresh things! Not cheap, but tonight's tender squeaky green beans were to die for. Mmmm.
Anyway - I'm back to tracking. As of today. I had a few false starts last week, but now I'm back. As of today. At least for today, haha. But I'm trying. Again.
Some supportive nagging and prodding would be greatly appreciated. And those of you who know me via other avenues, text messages, facebook instant messages, etc. are also welcomed. I'm going to get back on the horse, and I'm not so foolish to think a little help wouldn't ...help.
Tuesday, June 25, 2013
Plod plod plod.
I'm still around, sort of. Somewhat. Maintaining some momentum, although fat lot of good that does on the scale. (Heh. Fat lot.) Despite some sour-grapes-face regarding the one-sixty-FIVE I saw on the scale this morning (seriously?!), I'm feeling alright. Max and I are eating pretty healthily, I'm packing salads and fruit to work every day, and I'm working on an exercise consistency goal right now. I didn't run last week as much as I'd liked to, and I didn't go today either - I packed all my gear and hoofed it on the trains and into the office despite an utter downpour this morning, but work got in the way and I couldn't break away for a full hour at lunch, which meant no run. I was utterly incensed at this unfair twist to my careful plans - I'd even snacked appropriately so I'd be fuelled well for a noon run! - and didn't realize til mid-afternoon that it was just PMS making me so rage-filled. Which then made it kind of funny. And, I'm hoping, explains the cruel number on the scale this morning. Anyway - I didn't run as much as I'd like, but I'm still getting a couple of lunch-runs in each week on average, and I'm doing other things too: weights with Max once or twice a week, popping my bike on the trainer in front of the TV, and tonight I zoomed on the elliptical trainer downstairs a bit, watching Harry Potter #4 over my cousin's shoulder while she vegged out on the couch. It's kind of sad how little endurance I seem to have... yesterday's bike ride was 25 minutes before I copped out (the TV show wasn't even half over!) and tonight's elliptical session was 20 minutes, with the last five forced... but at least it's something. I figure consistency first, then I'll think about adding in some speed or endurance. I feel tired just saying those words. Sheesh.
Plod plod plod indeed!
I just wanted to pop online and let all my SparkFriends know that I'm still around, even when I'm not around. I tracked calories today, pre-planned even, but it's been tough to get back into that habit. I'll keep at it though, that's all it takes. And that's where I'm at.
Tomorrow's yoga at work. Yay! I feel like some strength-type-stuff is what I could really use. Been thinking about P90X (maybe single-setting the workout, since a full hour seems excessive...?) Max has started following the New Rules of Lifting (which I bought him before the wedding, but he barely cracked the spine then); he's still in the "break-in workouts" but that's good, that's where he needs to be; he's never gotten into strength training before. I think it will be good for him, and make him more physically resilient, so when we go out and do active things together, they aren't "break-him workouts". You like that pun? Yeah. Me too. Like that time I was going to teach him how to snowboard and he ended up needing an MRI and many months of physio. That was fun. It would be nice if this helped him get rid of his bad shoulder and bad knee, and any other bad bits that he seems to develop whenever we go do something fun. Getting stronger will definitely help. In fact he's still going to physio, too, which is good (she's a good holistic strength-and-wellness influence); now it's for post-appendix-surgery core strengthening training. Core strength is good!
In other news: work is busy - I'm getting into real nitty gritty seismic analysis and design for a complex structure, and juggling a number of smaller projects that I'm managing myself. I signed and sealed my first full bridge about a week ago, which is a pretty big deal. Hello, liability and haunting responsibility! I've got a girls' weekend trip coming up for the Canada Day long weekend with the same girls I had on my stagette last summer - can't wait! heading up to the interior for some lake-side vegging, hiking, boating, eating and drinking. And maybe decorating a fancy cake with my cake-makin' bestie. Hubby's being his usual amazing self ("rescued" me and scrubbed the bathtub after I inhaled too much cleaner Saturday and ended up practically tasting Scrub-Free (which is so NOT scrub-free, either, what false advertising!) and he also spent about two hours in the kitchen yesterday making coq au vin, which was WAY tastier than I'd expected; I generally don't subscribe to cooking with red wine (just white, lots of white, lol!) but it was lovely. Our house renovations are moving along; the designer is finalizing plans and then they'll go to the city for permitting and approvals for the detached garage with down-the-hill-basement storage, ensuite bathroom makeover, and skylight repairs. We are looking into getting a cleaning lady for the monthly-big-bad-cleaning-jobs, despite some minor guilt at my inability to be a 50's housewife, a full-time-employed professional, mild asthmatic with a strong dislike of chemicals, and a woman of luxurious laziness all at the same time. Also, see "Scrub-Free", above. I'm also planning a baby shower for one my bridesmaids who is preggers with her first. In fact it's the first for any of my girlfriends! It's a pretty big deal. I'm co-hosting with another friend of hers that I'm not particularly close to, so that's an interesting exercise. I've been reading a lot... thanks Rachele... Hmmm.... what else is new? It has been almost a whole month since my last post! I feel like that's been too long. I'll try to blog again soon.
Trying to get to bed earlier these days too... here it is, 9:30pm and I'm going to go curl up with my book. Tough part is putting it down and shutting my eyes! Have a lovely night, my chickens!
Wednesday, May 29, 2013
Whoops... okay so perhaps my last blog was a little over-enthusiastic. I have been enjoying my carbs and treats a bit too much now that I can eat "real" food again... but I'm still tracking and am turning myself back around. I knew that I was heading toward a high-cal day yesterday, and only had half a tortilla around my fajita for dinner. Today, same situation (both days I didn't plan my food out well, which I won't repeat tomorrow!) and I chose a salmon-and-veggies dinner with a little whole wheat carbs to round it out, and dragged my road bike and trainer (okay Max carried the trainer) up to the living room so I could watch TV and burn some extra calories. I had to go easy, as my knees tend to get cranky when I overdo it on the trainer (which is pretty much any time I get on) but still. The effort was made.
So there, in a rambly kind of way, you have it. I've bobbled a little, but didn't wait until I'd slid into trouble to get back on the straight and narrow. I had a 480 calorie deficit yesterday and a 280 calorie deficit today! Almost a 2000-calorie deficit over the weekend (although I take that with a grain of salt, as it's the BodyMedia armband's calorie deficit, not Spark's), and 1500 over the previous three days (again, the armband)...
Oh... and the scale is up.
But as somebody very wisely posted on Rachele's feed when she was complaining about the scale not moving: it certainly won't move if you quit. So I'm not quitting! And even if I'm really somewhere closer to a 200-300 calorie daily deficit, not 500-1000 calories like that dumb armband says, I'm still making progress. So let's see where it goes!
Tomorrow: planned food, lots of water, and better sleep tonight!
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