Tuesday, November 27, 2007
The cut Christmas trees arrived today. I went to work early to meet the truck and help unload them.
I unloaded MORE trees, FASTER, than any man there.
I was the only employee to RUN each tree to it's area, and run back to the truck for another.
I was the only employee to carry TWO TREES AT A TIME, one on each shoulder.
Morning is usually the time of day I do my workout, but today, because of the shipment, I went to work. They all got to see how I am on a typical morning, and I them. I was at my best, they were drinking coffee, sluggish, and scarfing donuts.
After an hour at work, I asked the receiving supervisor if there were any more men left for me to emasculate. He smirked. I clocked out.
I picked up the dog and drove to meet an old friend for a walk. Unfortunately, he wanted to eat lunch after less than an hour of walking! Not satisfying at all! So, I promptly lined up another walking partner for this afternoon... I just need more exercise than that.
There is another 18 wheeler, loaded with Frasier Firs, arriving at the nursery tomorrow morning.
I love days like this.
Monday, November 19, 2007
This year, we are going to someone else's house, but I am cooking a whole Thanksgiving spread, just for the two of us, here at our home, tomorrow.
That way, we will be so full of Thanksgiving food, nothing will be a novelty, and nothing will be irresistable. We won't take home any leftovers from the host's house, since our fridge will be full of our own. We will also have a big meal of my healthier recipes before we leave to go to Thanksgiving dinner, so we won't be ravenous, and we can have a little sample and enjoy some wine and the football game.
I am so stoked to implement my plan!
Friday, November 16, 2007
We ran out of coffee this morning.
Even more unusual, my husband was first out of bed (but I digress).
He showered, dressed, and headed to Starbucks for the coffee... or so I thought.
He returned with a pound of French Roast, and not two, but ONE large cup of brew... (it gets worse) and not one, but THREE McDonald's breakfast sandwiches.
Like the serpent, he opened them all and spread them out on the table while my coffee brewed, and took slow, deliberate bites out of each one.
He informed me that it was an experiment to find out which was the best, so that the next time he has breakfast at McDonald's, he'll know what to order (my husband is a genius, ain't he). Never mind the fact that years could pass before we ever eat at McDonald's again. I pointed out that he will have forgotten his experiment by that time, and predicted that he will likely repeat it in 2010....
I did partake. EVEN THOUGH I'd already had a very sensible bowl of Kashi AND my whey isolate.
So, the immoral of this story is that it isn't even 9am and I've already had HALF my daily calories.
Just goes to show you how DANGEROUS it is to send your husband out by himself, with an empty stomach.
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
My 8k this past Saturday was a big achievement for me. I’d looked forward to it for months, and several of my coworkers signed up to walk with me, adding to the excitement and anticipation. I “trained” for the event by steadily increasing my daily walking distance in the weeks preceding the event.
On the morning of the event, the excitement was high as I met my team at the starting line, and we waited our turn behind the marathon runners. We surged forward when they left the starting corral… we knew we were next. I don’t recall my teammates final words to me, just before the gun, but it was something along the lines of “don’t let us slow you down; we’ll just keep walking when you start running; just wait for us by the finish line.” You have no idea how flattered and motivated I was!
The gun popped and we started to go. As soon as the field opened up, and I was able to, I started jogging; and alternated my walking and jogging throughout the length of the course. I didn’t push myself to my physical limits my any means, but I definitely pushed myself harder than I did last time, in 2005. Of course, back then I was about 300 lbs, and I clearly recall being the most obese and out of shape person participating.
Finally, as I was walking into the home stretch, I was able to see the finish line ahead of me, and decided I ought to try jogging all the way to it… good thing, because there were cameras all over the place, and only a handful of runners coming in. At the instant I crossed the line, I was completely by myself, and heard my name announced over the loudspeakers. It was sweet.
After finishing, I phoned by friends to find out where they were, and walked over to the list of finishing times to find my bib number. I didn’t really have anything to compare it to at that point, having no recollection of my previous time. I found out later, when I finished WALKING home (yep, another 3 miles) and compared the numbers from my previous race. Although this was only my second time participating at this distance; but the results were much better than last time: I bested myself by almost 33 minutes.
I spent the hours after the 8k (or, I should say, 8 miles) eating and relaxing, feeling pride over my results, and wondering if I’d be plagued with foot pain that evening at work (it’s been very bad lately). I really wanted to eat and go straight to sleep, but I made it through my shift and came home to log on and post about my day.
That’s when I read the comments about celebrity marathoners.
Someone started a thread about Katie Holmes running the New York Marathon, and it got pretty heated.
Someone else replied that she hadn’t earned a spot legitimately, the way all of the non-celebrity, SERIOUS athletes had to.
Okay, I get that. I understand that there could be feelings of outrage at that, especially from someone who has worked very hard, exercised extreme discipline, and paid heavy dues. When a celebrity runs on a VIP pass, it’s like they are cheating. They didn’t work for it, they didn’t EARN it, and they don’t deserve it. It’s the same feeling you used to get when bigger kids cut in the cafeteria line in school. It’s the same feeling you get when you’re patiently waiting in bumper-to-bumper traffic, and you see cars cutting in way ahead of you. But, the criticism involved specific statistics. Namely, Katie’s pace, which was 12:35 minutes per mile (for 26.2 miles).
Two sentences jumped off the screen at me: “covering 26.2 miles @ a pace of 12:35 really isn't that big of an accomplishment”, and “I… WALK…13:30…w/ bathroom breaks & lunch … 26.2 miles… in under 8 hrs”.
It was also suggested that, in light of her very slow time, AND the fact that she works out daily, that she obviously didn't train for the race, and did it on a whim. Which may be true…. but so much more was said… and said very, very passionately.
I read all these words over and over, and over again.
I couldn’t STOP reading them.
As they sank in, I started to cry.
The comments devastated me. I let these few words rob me of all my joy. I suddenly felt inadequate, disappointed with myself, and embarrassed at my inability to finish, walking AND running, in less than an hour. All my desire to share the experience disappeared.
Truth be told, Katie Holmes kicked my ass.
Not only was she significantly faster than me, she maintained that pace for more than five times the distance I did.
Hearing that other people walk faster than I run, INCLUDING lunch and potty breaks, and nonchalantly breeze through distances that are five times longer, completely deflated me.
And this is coming from someone who did not do it on a whim. I can state unequivocally that I did train, and I do work out every day. I am frequently sore.
Now, I know this person is my friend, and would never say or do anything to intentionally hurt me. She’s a role model in every sense of the word. She is also uber-athletic, and has been one of my biggest supporters on my fitness journey. I’m sure she has no idea the effect her words had on me. I’m also quite certain that what she considers an intense workout, and what I consider an intense workout, are two very, very different things.
Even though she and several other friends have messaged me about the 8k, I was just not able to respond. The subject, and the thread I'd read, had broken me.
Several days passed before I was able to write this blog.
Having expressed all that, however, doesn’t reveal the positive effect that this had had on me. Yes, there *is* a positive side to all this. I have decided that if my athletic, rock-star friend can walk at 13 minute miles, then so shall I. I decided the very next day, that I would focus heavily on participation in 8k and 10k distance events, and set a goal of improving my pace in each successive event, until I’m at least able to beat Katie Holmes (speed, not distance). If that means pushing myself and spending more time jogging, less walking, then so be it.
It so happens that I walked TWO 8k’s last week- one that I mapped out on MapQuest and did all by myself, and the one I did with my friends (and few thousand other people). Today, I walked a lonely 10k through the streets of 210ville. Please don’t ask how long it took; there was no jogging involved.
I am looking forward to the next “official” race with great enthusiasm, and much more determination than I’ve ever had before. I have a new goal. I wanna be a contender.
Monday, November 05, 2007
I will be participating in my 2nd 8k this weekend. I mostly walk, but I'll be moving a little faster this time.
I will be participating in a 10k on April 5th, 2008. I have walked this a bunch of times, but again, I intend to go faster this time.
I have located (at LAST) a marathon that accepts walkers! The best part is, it is close enough to DRIVE to, so no big financial strain. It happens on March 16th, 2008.
Between now and then, I intend to walk a half-marathon. I located a very cheap one within 100 miles, but unfortunately they don't accept walkers. SO, I will do either the Gulf Beaches Halfie or the Gasparilla Distance Classic, both of which are in Florida, and turn it into a vacation. Needless to say, the spouse is "totally down" with this!
So THERE YOU HAVE IT! I will follow in my idol SMURFETTE's footsteps, only slower! But mark my words, THIS WILL HAPPEN!
A thought provoking post by a fellow team member:
What inspires you? Do you have anything in particular that you turn to when you're feeling off-track or discouraged? A list of goals, an inspirational quote, a pair of jeans...or something else?
I thought about this, and decided that NOTHING is more inspiring or motivating than STICKING TO IT and reaping the RESULTS.
I always feel excited about my program in the morning, but that feeling crumbles quickly if I mess up and eat badly! I become so disappointed in myself. Several consecutive days of falling off the diet wagon break my spirit and make me feel hopeless.
However, find that if I really concentrate on sticking to it, and being committed to overcome my problem areas (EATING), I become more inspired and motivated each consecutive day I achieve this goal. I become PROUD of myself. I know that after just a few days of discipline and willpower, I will see results on the scale, and in a few weeks I will see results in my clothing.
Really, if not for having GOALS to focus on, where would anyone be on this journey? We ALL HAVE GOALS. I feel best when I know I'm doing my best to get there.
Have a goal, and work toward it as hard as you can!
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