Friday, May 30, 2014
Today was one of those days when I used one of the motivation tricks from Sparkpeople. It worked and I actually ended up doing what I had planned to do.
So, here goes. This morning I woke up and I wasn't feeling terribly motivated. I just wasn't feeling it. Still, today is the last day of the 5% challenge and I thought I should do something! I seriously thought about not doing a work out because today is the first half day Friday.
(This is something all offices should think about. As long as you can get your work done, between Memorial Day and Labor Day, our office closes at noon on Fridays. You don't have to try to make up the hours during the week. You are expected to manage your own work load.)
Anyway, my plan has been to walk home on half day Fridays, weather permitting. So, of course I could skip However, I workout in the mornings with my DH and I knew that if I didn't, he wouldn't. So, I got up and we did the 2-mile classic walk from the Leslie Sansone 4-mile power walk dvd. It's a little low key for us but at least we got our 30 minutes in. So, There's that first Spark motivation technique - work out with a buddy. It works.
Still, it's half day Friday, what about that walk? Well, it was also a going away lunch for a colleague. We are so going to miss her. She is amazing to work with and brought a lot into our office, including her family! It was really good food and I know I ate too much. Still, I made some really good food choices. Flash fried trout over spinach and brown rice - I was in heaven! By the time we were done, we had spent three hours in the restaurant and it was late, not early afternoon. And I'm stuffed, and it's nearly 3 miles. As I'm walking out of the restaurant, The question becomes - Am I really walking home today?
As I'm considering this, I start walking. At this point, I can walk to the train stop closest to me or start walking home. My walk home somewhat parallels the train so I decided to walk to the next stop and make my decision there. By the time I was near that stop, I thought I would postpone the decision to the following stop. If I didn't get on the train there, I might as well walk all the way. So, I took those first steps and proceeded to talk myself into doing what I had originally planned and walked all the way home - 2.78 mi - 53 minutes.
And that's a Spark motivator in action - if you're not feeling the workout, just do a few minutes of it. You'll probably finish the workout. Instead of 1 workout, I got two in. I made my step goals (and then some). Now I get to post a big 83 minutes instead of 30.
So, go ahead, take that first step...
Saturday, May 24, 2014
As part of the Spring 5% challenge, I decided to do the "Race Within a Race" up the Appalachian Trail and said I wanted to complete 280 miles. What was I thinking? 280? Let me put it up front - that was a truly, truly ambitious goal. To actually complete my 280 miles, I would have to do the equivalent of 13.68 miles for the next seven days. NOT GONNA HAPPEN!
Is this a failure? NO! NOPE! NOT! I have lost more weight this time around than I have in the past challenges and some of it is due to the increased activity level, I'm sure. But what is really cool, what I can't seem to get my head around because it's so odd - for me anyway- is that I seem to have found an inner athlete - at 52!
I'm not talking about running marathons or karate tournaments, although both of those are interesting to me. I'm talking about the athlete who likes to get up in the morning and do a serious morning workout. The athlete that likes to walk the three miles home from work and now plans to do that at least twice a week. That's the person that convinced her DH not to pick her up from work and drive home but to drive to Jamaica Pond and walk the circumference. This is the person who picked up the Tae Bo dvds because they looked like a challenge, looked at how hard they were and did one anyway! And liked it!
Where has this person been all my life? Of course, given life expectancy, I have another 20 - 30 years left to enjoy this person. It's going to be really fun getting to know her!
Thursday, August 01, 2013
So there are two kinds of challenges Ė the obstacle challenges which challenge you, and the goal challenge you which you strive to achieve. Both of those seem to be hitting me right now. The worst part is that the first one is interfering with one of my secondsÖ
I have been a regular member of the 8-week, 5% challenges and I love, love, love, my Awesome A Teammates. I have never made my 5% goal but sometimes I even lose weight. I like having the goal Ė itís one of those second types of challenges. Each time I do one, I feel like Iím making progress toward my goal of being Fabulous over Fifty, even if donít lose weight.
HOWEVER! Between the last challenge and this one (started on the 27th), I started having blood pressure and some minor heart issues. Itís all good. Everything is ďjust over the line, almost but not quite right.Ē So, I have been prescribed a very low dosage blood pressure medication. This is a challenge of the first kind. The beta blockers have an irritating side effect Ė weight gain. Iíve taken beta blockers before Ė as a migraine medication, a positive side effect Ė and I remember this happening. It was the first time that I felt like my weight was out of my control. I have to laugh, or Iíll cry. I was concerned because I had to buy a ďfat bikiniĒ because I had moved from a size 4 to a size 8. Now, Iíd just like to be a size 8.
Iíve already started gaining the weight again this time and Iím afraid my weigh in on Saturday will reflect that. I will know that it is not because I have changed my diet or exercise plan but it is still going to feel bad because I wonít be on the ďLast A StandingĒ list. Still, itís better than not taking the medication and my migraines are gone! I donít want to let my Awesome A teammates down but I think Iíd better take the meds and figure out how to live with beta blockers!
So, this brings me back to the second type of challenge. What am I going to do about this? Well, Hubby and I have decided to up our game by training for a 5k cross-country run at Homecoming in October. (Did I mention that my son will be in his first year at my alma mater this year and itís my 30th Homecoming? How cool is that! ) We are not going to change our current routine (the combo Spark 28-day boot camp and Spark Total Body dvds) but add in the extra training to what weíre already doing. That starts next week. Iíve already mapped out what the next 8 weeks will look. I have to print it out because we need to follow a chart to know what weíre doing next. Of course, itís more than 8 weeks between now and the run, so I will have to figure out what we need to do in the extra weeks. Apparently there are some leaps on this run so maybe we need to find an obstacle course? Maybe thatís what we can focus on during the last weeks.
So, thatís challenge answer 1. Iíll see how the next couple of weeks go before I look for challenge answer 2. This will all be cumulative, so weíll see how far we can go. It's all going to be okay but it's very frustrating. I'd like to have more of the good challenges and less of the other. Life is what it is, tho, and I'm still working at being Fab over 50.
Sunday, June 02, 2013
Okay, I'll admit that my son goes to a really "crunch, hippy, progressive" high school. They have really cool classes that combine science and art, English and food things that make dry subjects kind of interesting. The schedule is really interesting, too. There are 7 5-week Mods. They only take 3-4 classes a mod but the classes are 1-1/2 to 2 hours long. Think, intensely focusing on only 3-4 subjects with final papers in most of them at the end of the 5 weeks. This means that they have the opportunity to take a lot of really, really cool classes. (Made me want to go to high school again and I had a severe dislike of time period.) You cannot graduate from this school without the required English, Science, History, Math and Language credits - similar to most schools, but!!! you also cannot graduate without taking classes in 3 out of 4 arts disciplines (visual, dance, music, drama). It's the perfect school for my son. However, you apparently cannot graduate without the requisite athletic credits. Wait, hippy, progressive school and you have to have athletic credits? Yup! And guess what, he was short 1 (only 1) athletic credit. That one credit could keep him from graduating. He's not the only kid in this situation but graduation if Friday and the credit has to be made up by Wednesday. And it has to be 30 hours in one Mod to be one credit. Normally, he would have been able to make up this credit when he had a free 4th class but they didn't notify him that he was short until January and he had no free class blocks left. Ugh. So, what's the answer - weekend activities. In this case, hiking.
Now, let me clarify - No one in this family is an athlete! We are not avid hikers. My DH and I are the three o's: old, overweight, and out of shape. He's only 10-20 lbs over but I'm 30-40 lbs. I'm 5'3-1/2" (on a good day) and weight 171 lbs, and 51. DH is 5'8" and 61. (We both have birthdays next month.) My son, is not overweight but his primary "physical" activity is karate on Saturday mornings and whatever dance is required by the musical he's in.
So, he went hiking with his friends Zak (also in the same situation) and Ben (not short a credit but robo-hiker extraordinaire, last weekend. They did two mountain hikes, camping in between. However, this is New England! Last weekend they had rain, sleet, and snow while camping and hiking. This experience defined "miserable" for my son. And, after all that, it was only worth 15 of the 30 hours to make up the credit - it was only worth a 1/2 the credit he needs to graduate.
So, after some back and forth with the Athletic Director (who is no favorite of my son or his mother!) we embarked on hiking as a family this weekend. However, he also had to fit in a haircut and the Prom; we got all that done, too. And, the weather this week? in the 90's. It's not really hiking weather. It's the extreme opposite of last week.
Here is my advice to those of you who are thinking - oh, that could be fun! DO NOT START YOUR HIKING EXPERIENCE WITH DIFFICULT TRAILS! Or how about this one? HOBBITS SHOULDN'T HIKE MOUNTAINS! I, the hobbit, made it through, somehow. I'm sure I burned a tremendous amount of calories. Next time? I don't listen to Rangers or DH when they say, "it doesn't look that steep on the map."
We did get it done, however and that should be it. This is the last week of school. No more athletic credits. Come this fall, we ship him off to college...
So, here are a few photos:
Midway through yesterday's hike. Yes, that's a pith helmet and it was the perfect hat.
Checking out the trail
Checking the map
oh, right - it's a mountain.
What the car read at the end of yesterday's hike.
DH on the trail yesterday.
We'll have more pics from today's hike but they're not uploaded yet. Let's just say, yesterday we were in the Blue Hills. Today was Mount Monadnock. The hills are foothills. The Mount - was just that.
Time for a very long soak...
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