RJSAMS   30,593
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Here's hoping I can successfully achieve some goals

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Last fall I set some goals I wanted to achieve during my 50th year of life. It's been 6 months since my 49th birthday, so it's about time I revisited those goals.

The next two weeks should show me how I'm doing on the physical goals. I wanted to:

1) finish a 5K race in under 30 minutes
2) finish a half-marathon
3) finish a sprint triathlon

This coming Saturday is my first 5K of the year--not counting the Valentine's Day race, which wasn't really timed. I've done a 4-mile race, at which I achieved a PR, but this 5K is special. My weight loss support group is doing it as a team, and it's the same race I did as my very first ever 5K last year. Based on my 4-mile time, I have a very good chance of achieving the goal of finishing under 30 minutes. Fingers crossed!

The following weekend, April 28th, I am scheduled to run my first half-marathon. I feel fairly confident that I can finish it; whether I'll achieve my tentative time goal is another story, but my goal for the first half-marathon is really just to finish.

So the next 10 days may see the accomplishment of two of those three goals. Wish me luck!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JSTETSER 4/20/2012 6:42AM

    You have some great goals. You go girl!

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CHALLENGER15 4/19/2012 8:49PM

    Wonderful! Keep us posted!

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BOVEY63 4/19/2012 12:15PM

    awesome goals! Have a great race Saturday!
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KAYOTIC 4/19/2012 10:03AM

    emoticonGreat job setting and then tracking those goals! emoticon

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RUNNER4LIFE08 4/19/2012 9:26AM

    emoticon Good Luck!

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CODEMAULER 4/19/2012 8:48AM

    It's going to be great, Renee, no matter how the numbers crunch out. You are the happiest runner that I know. It's going to be an awesome race report - WAHOO!


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TAMIHUNT 4/19/2012 12:52AM

    You can do it Renee! I can't wait to hear how you did! I love how great you have been doing, your diligence is going to pay off and I can't wait to congratulate you!! emoticon

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The Best Laid Plans...must bow to reality

Sunday, March 25, 2012

It's been a great weekend. Repeat: it's been a great weekend. There's no reason I should feel disappointed, right?

I have posted about this in my status, but I was very pleased about the Lake Johanna 4-Mile Race yesterday. It was my first "real" race of the season, and I felt really good. Winter training is paying off.

I ran the 4 miles in 38:07, an average of 9:26 per mile pace, and I ran faster every mile, finishing with enough left in the tank for a little kick that took me under 9:00 minute pace for the last bit of the race. The third mile is a killer long uphill, and I was able to pass people on the way up. Some of those people passed me on the 4th mile, which is the downhill side. My knees can't take the pounding of a really hard downhill, so I tend to slack off on those a bit. but I was very happy with the result--a PR for me for 4 miles, and also for my daughter, who beat me by about 2 1/2 minutes.

Today was long run day, and I was planning to do 10 miles. My first 10 mile long run ever. I am training for the Jailbreak Half-Marathon, which is coming up April 28th. I was running with a group from my run club, and we were maintaining a nice slow pace, about 11:30 or so. Still, by mile 7 my right knee was seizing up on me. It would loosen for a bit, then we'd stop for water, or there'd be slanted pavement or something, and womp, it would tighten up again. By mile 8 I gave up, and one of the spouses gave me a ride back to the start.

I'm so disappointed! I hate setting a goal and missing it. My coach was back at the start, and he was encouraging me--had a hard race yesterday, etc.--but I am still mad at myself. Foolish, I know. I should be glad I got the 8 miles in and ice on my knee before it really got bad. That's 13+ miles in one weekend, and I'm whining about two I didn't finish.

Still. I hate setting goals and missing them. What if I can't do my half-marathon? Makes me worried...

P.S. My current favorite running song. It carried me halfway up that long mile 3 hill, passing people as I went, with a stupid grin on my face. I could hardly resist singing along out loud: Don't Stop Me now, by Queen. Best. Running. Song. Ever.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHALLENGER15 3/26/2012 6:35PM

    Love your running song!

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    "Don't Stop Me Now" was my "power song," too, when I ran! You can't help but dig deep when you hear the upbeat positivity of that song. :)


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BOVEY63 3/25/2012 3:01PM

    Hope your knee is better soon. Great job on the race!

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JECKIE 3/25/2012 2:36PM

    I know exactly what you mean about plans not going as you want. BUT I've also found my absolute worst running day is the day after a race. ugh. I think it's that we give all we have to a race and it takes more than 24 hours to replenish.

I think you'll do fine for the half. I'm doing my half that weekend too. 5 weeks and counting! Don't forget to leave a little time to taper!!! ;)

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Working to keep improving

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

For awhile it seemed like I was making fitness and weight loss strides in huge leaps. That was a lot of fun, and made me feel really good. Of course, considering where I started, I needed to make huge strides to get healthy.

Now the improvement comes in much smaller increments. It's harder to measure the steps: instead of inches coming off, I might shave a second or two off my pace in a training run. Maybe I can hit my target interval pace a bit more regularly. This is a lot tougher, isn't it?

I still have a commitment to getting fitter and healthier. I'd like to see myself get faster in races, be able to go farther, etc. But without those giant leaps, it is a little harder to keep up my motivation.

The entries for the November Disney Wine & Dine Half-Marathon opened yesterday. I'm doing my first half-marathon in April, I'm signed up for one in August, and I want to do the Disney run as a gift to myself for my 50th birthday. These are the things that I hope will keep me working to improve. I've got a date with Mickey Mouse!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WALKINGMAMMA 3/20/2012 1:55PM

    emoticon I told DH that for my 50th, I want to run the Disneyland Half marathon...Sad part is...I have to wait 6 more years..

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KAYOTIC 3/18/2012 9:31AM

    emoticonKeep on looking for those improvements, and also, can you look back from where you started and see how far you've come? Once you hit maintenance, the "improvements" are actually found in staying where you are....it's a difficult transition for many of us who got so used to seeing the changes, but sometimes we need to embrace and celebrate the "sameness" especially if that was the goal!

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BOVEY63 3/15/2012 12:21PM

    You are doing so amazing. Here's to a wonderful date with Mickey Mouse!

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PEPPYPATTI 3/14/2012 10:21PM


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The scale is kinder and I'm feeling strong! (but tired...)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

WOOT! I finally seem to have gotten rid of that pesky 5 lbs of holiday weight gain. I'm back to where I want to be on the scale, so now I just have to work to stay here.

Lately, though, I have been ravenous. I think it is the increased mileage I am running. My body needs more fuel. I'm trying to make sure the fuel that is in my kitchen is healthy food, so that I don't grab junk just because it is in sight. It's still the same old battle.

This morning my legs were really tired--I had to work to get 4 miles in, and they were pretty slow miles. However, since my four miles today brings my total mileage since Sunday to almost 22 miles, plus a day of cross-training on the elliptical, I guess the tired legs have an explanation. Tomorrow might need to be a rest day.

Feeling stronger!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

COMPUCATHY 2/26/2012 9:40PM

    Yes, it does sound like a rest day is in order! You're doing great! I agree...keeping the kitchen filled with only "should haves" is a great thing to help keep up on track! Keep up the good work! Thanks for the encouragement! Spark on! emoticon

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CHALLENGER15 2/26/2012 5:23PM

Sounds like you are doing very well, Renee!

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CODEMAULER 2/23/2012 7:05PM

    I love feeling strong, no matter my size. It's so very empowering and feels like everything is paying off.

I'll get there, too, and we can gloat all about it!


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BOVEY63 2/23/2012 4:07PM

    You are an inspiration lady!
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KKINNEA 2/23/2012 2:59PM

    Awesome! I'm definitely in tired legs mode - tonight's mileage is going to be slow...

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GONEWLIFE 2/23/2012 2:06PM

    Good job... I'm still working on that 5 lb holiday weight gain !!

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Just a small frustration rant...

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Maybe I have no business being frustrated. Maybe I should not let a number on a scale run my life as much as it does. I get all that.

But have come so far in my weight loss journey, I am determined to be vigilant, and never gain back the 160 lbs I have lost. So the scale is important. I get on it every day. I let it dictate my behavior in some ways. I think that's positive progress--when I weighed over 300 lbs I NEVER got on the scale, because I didn't want the scale to dictate my behavior. My hands just continously transferred food to my mouth. NOT anymore!

I was at my lowest weight ever (since childhood, anyway!) in early November. Now I can't seem to get back there--I am about 5 lbs over my lowest, and I want it back!

I'm running a lot--more than I've ever run in my life. I feel pretty good, sore muscles of course, and my knees are never 100%, but I feel strong. I will easily top 20 miles of running this week, which has never happened before. I'm already at 16.75 miles this week, I have a long run tonight and a 5K race on Saturday. Why can't I unload these 5 lbs?????

Okay, over the holidays I know I overindulged--the lbs I gained were legitimate. But since January I have been pretty diligent, counting my calories, using good food to fuel my body. What's up with this?? Grrrrr!

Rant over. I'll keep plugging away.

P.S. Small side rant: what's up with the way Sparkpeople figures calories burned for running? Accepted wisdom is that you burn approx. 100 calories per mile for running, no matter how fast or slow you go. If you run 5 minute miles, you burn 100 calories in 5 minutes; 10 minute miles = 100 calories burned in 10 minutes. Obviously, that varies with the terrain, your body weight, prevailing headwinds, etc. etc., but 100 calories/mile is pretty much accepted. So the other day my DD and I ran 6.25 miles, including 3 miles of intense intervals at tempo and higher pace. Of course, SP averages the pace over the whole distance, so it looks slow (we had recovery walks and jogs interspersed with the intervals). But still, SP says we burned only 371 calories that whole workout. We were on the roads running for 72 minutes! I don't usually get hung up on calorie counts--it is obviously an imprecise science--but that seems remarkably wrong to me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CODEMAULER 2/9/2012 10:23PM

    I know that my Polar tells me the calories I'm burning and I could just log that in there... but then I guess I'd feel obligated to be more precise with my food measurements, too.


Get your tape measure in the game; sometimes it's a better friend than the scale!

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MNGIRLIE 2/9/2012 6:33PM

    You're kicking it with all that running!! Way to go!

And the scale is a fickle friends. I've made idle threats to stop weighing myself daily. I really think I need to follow through because it really doesn't matter how much you weigh as long as you're diligent with the fitness and healthy eating. It's easy for me to say that though as I step on my scale daily.

I had no idea you'd lost so much weight!! Congrats to you!

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BOVEY63 2/9/2012 4:26PM

    You are doing so awesome with the running!
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Your weight issues may be coming from building muscle through all the running.

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JECKIE 2/9/2012 2:26PM

    Oh do I feel your pain! I'm running more than ever now, too, and the weight loss is sloooooow.

Many running experts say it is very difficult to lose weight while distance training because the fuel demands on your body are fairly high. I know personally I see this because I'm hungry all the freaking time! (except for right after my run when I couldn't eat if you paid me).

And I agree with the HRM suggestion. Invaluable tool!

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RUNNER4LIFE08 2/9/2012 2:15PM

    I try not to look at the calorie burn that Spark gives me because I don't think it is very accurate. I know what kind of work I put in so I base my calorie intake for the day by that.

I was in the same boat as you, when I was training for my HM I did not lose weight either. I was averaging about 20 miles a week. I didn't start losing again until I started adding back in weight lifting. That could help you.... just a thought!

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KLPEFFERS 2/9/2012 12:13PM

    I rely only on my HRM to determine calories burned. I've found SP is rarely accurate when compared to my HRM.

They are really coming down in price by the way, I found a new polar watch just today for $70.


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LEAELLEN07 2/9/2012 12:06PM

    A heart rate monitor is really a great investment. A good one can seem expensive up front but the knowledge you gain from having one is invaluable. It might help you kick those last few pounds.

Aside from that, congratulations! 160 pounds is a huge feat!

Keep rocking! emoticon

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KKINNEA 2/9/2012 11:58AM

    I figure Spark is saving me from myself - I would eat a whole lot more if it looked like I burned that much! On the other hand, DailyMile thinks I'm a calorie-burning machine so I take both with a grain of salt.

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-POLEDANCEGIRL- 2/9/2012 11:47AM

    I have the same SP rant!!! I put in 5 minute incriments of what I ran rather than an average.

Nice job on the running!! keep it up!!

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JIML289 2/9/2012 11:42AM

    I'm new to SP, came across this post.

I admire your determination.
Could It be that you have a gain in muscle that is adding the 5 lbs?
I try to look at the overall benefit of weight loss and exercise.

The weight that you have already lost has probably improved your blood sugar, lipids, liver and kidney function; in addition to improvement in digestion.
You should be proud of what you have done so far.

Don't beat yourself up, just keep headed in the right direction and you will find it easier to reach your goals. emoticon

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MBSHAZZER 2/9/2012 11:22AM

    Just some info on the calories burned b/c that always gets me.... it's VERY imprecise. The 100 calories per mile is for a ~ 150 pound person of average fitness. If you weigh less and are more fit than average, you will likely burn less. I burn about 60 calories per mile, booooo!

Do you run with a heart rate monitor? That's probably the best way to determine calories burned. I don't run with mine, but I do use it when I bike on the stationary bike. I can totally see the error in Spark because using real HRM data, I burn WAY more than Spark's estimates.

And a HUGE congrats for losing 160 pounds! WOWZA!!!!!

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