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SEPPIESUSAN's Recent Blog Entries

Blogging to try to prevent myself from going crazy!

Monday, June 15, 2009

It's the end of the school year. As the special educator, I've stopped seeing students for the most part, and instead I'm swamped with end-of-year paperwork. Long hours of boring paperwork gives me the worst case of the munchies. Put that together with the fact that I often get the munchies on Mondays because I'm tired after my alarm clock's rude 6 a.m. wakening, and I'm really in a state right now! However, I am proud to report I have no intentions of succumbing to any kind of snack hunt, and I'm going to list the many reasons why not:

Susan's Reasons Why She's Not Having a Major Chowdown Right Now:
*Instead of letting it fester, I'm blogging about it!
*Gum and pomegranate seltzer.
*I am on a roll, motivation-wise...I've been on track ten weeks! Once the momentum builds up, I tend to find it easy to continue going with the flow.
*I recognize the reasons why I am tempted to snack, and I know that they are not based on hunger, and that the urge is temporary and will go away soon.
*I've eaten my typical 550-calorie breakfast, 450-calorie lunch, and I had 600 calories' worth of snacks this morning. I know that I have another 150-250 calories' worth of healthy snacks in my cooler if I need them (will most likely stick to the lower number and eat around 1-2 p.m.), and then will have a small, 200-300 calorie dinner when I get home. All of these calories come from nutritious sources.
*Along those same lines, junky snack foods just aren't readily available. Sure, in the past I've seen that as a challenge - a snack hunt! But those types of behaviors usually only hit me when I'm weight-gaining funks.

Okay, writing it out really did help. Now, back to writing Individualized Education Programs. Just a half-hour to go until it's 1 p.m. and I can have some yogurt with fresh raspberries!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RA4945 6/16/2009 1:41PM

    Susan, I love reading many, many blogs, but you are one of my all-time favorite bloggers! You always share wisdom, insight, honesty and humor. I just think you're great. And you totally inspire me to run faster! I actually have thought about you while on the treadmill before. You push me! I loved your previous blog with the math figures. You are too funny. I've tried to do all that before but I failed. I like how you broke it down with the treadmill speed. You are going to rock this 5k and surprise even yourself. Keep up the great work and please continue to share your insight, victories, struggles and silly thoughts. emoticon

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TRACYZABELLE 6/16/2009 6:06AM

    YUM Yogurt and berries! When I snack it is generally fruit and yogurt or cottage cheese.. trying to stay away from the salt as it blows me up!

I am sure soon enough you will be so happy school is out! PHEW!

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MARATHONER340 6/15/2009 7:23PM

    I always snack when I'm stressed and tired!! Way to go for keeping yourself in check! I think I probably ate more than I should have when I got home from work/running. But that just means I'll have a smaller healthier dinner! Lots of veggies!

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SEEHOLZ 6/15/2009 5:10PM

    You ARE doing great and are definitely on a roll! Wo-hoo for kicking the snack attack to the curb!!! emoticon

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LIL_EZZY 6/15/2009 4:55PM

    I always find that writing it down makes me so much more accountable. You have it together though. Im impressed.

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ZIRCADIA 6/15/2009 3:06PM

    Sounds like you're doing GREAT. I need to channel some of this mojo when I'm at home on the weekends... :P haha.

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FITGIRL15 6/15/2009 1:25PM

    I'm eating my yogurt and fresh raspberries right now!! (But I added dry cottage cheese curd for protein to mine! SO GOOD!)

You are right though, stress makes me snack mindlessly too! It's good when you have another task (like blogging :) to get your mind off it! They say distraction is the best medicine sometimes :)

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    Way to go for reaching out through the net for support at a time of stress. You know what to do and you are getting the support you need to make things happen. Congrats on taking care of yourself.

Also, as a mom of two special-needs students, I'd like to thank you for choosing the career you did and for giving so much of yourself every day. I know firsthand that a teacher can make or break the learning experience for a child and can support or tear down all the work that the parents do, too. Thanks for making a difference. I hope the parents of your school kids thank you also.


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CREATINGMYSELF 6/15/2009 12:43PM

    Good job on being rational with yourself. I need to do this too. I have a weak moment at least once a day, and 75% of the time I have been able to keep myself from giving in, but it's that other 25% of the time that I need to work on.

You've been doing lots of work on yourself, not just outside, but inside. It's really the key to success, and it reminds me that I need to do the same. Without changing our thinking we would continue with the same patterns and end up with the same frustrating results, over and over, for the rest of our lives. So keep it up!

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 6/15/2009 12:30PM

    This is awesome Susan! You are made of the win!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Week 10 Ends

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Week 1 -1lb
Week 2 -2lb
Week 3 -1lb
Week 4 -0.4lb
Week 5 -2lb
Week 6 -1lb
Week 7 -lb
Week 8 -2lb
Week 9 -1lb
Week 10 -1lb

And now, a few random thoughts:
*Even though I went for an 88-minute bike ride and did strength training at the gym for 25 minutes, I still felt guilty yesterday because I didn't go for a run.
*It's raining. :( How am I supposed to play (run, bike) outside today???
*The day after my boyfriend's sister's wedding in early July, they're having a big barbecue party. I have a dress I bought for a casual backyard wedding two summers ago when I was much skinnier than I am now - it's size 4 - and I tried it on yesterday, and it fit! I'll just have to suck in my stomach the whole time. :) I still have to buy a dress for the actual wedding though - might shop today.
*I had a really wonderful dinner last night at Wagamama, which is a new Asian restaurant at Fanueil Hall. We sat outside, shared two bottles of wine, and I had a chicken spinach salad. The weather was really nice and I enjoyed the time with my friends very much!!
*My cold needs to go away. Now.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TERRIANGEL 6/15/2009 8:49PM

    Wow! FABULOUS progress!!!!!!

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SKYFYRE 6/15/2009 12:56AM

    emoticon Sending healthy thoughts your way!
Congrats on all of your weight loss! You are doing so well!

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LIL_EZZY 6/14/2009 6:04PM

    CONGRATS about the dress that is great. I wouldn't be worried that you didn't get your run you did enough to counter act it. I know how you feel though I always feel guilty if I don't get it in and think about it all day. I haven't run for over a week though BAD BaD. Im running today in my lunch break. Have a great rest of your Sunday.

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GERMANPICKLE 6/14/2009 4:17PM

  cool that you fit the dress - what a GREAT piece of news!

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BRUIN2 6/14/2009 9:44AM

    How are you supposed to play outside in the rain you ask?!?!

Slap on a hat, a vest or a light jacket, and get out there and enjoy the rain!!!

I speak from experience (my run this morning was in the spitting rain, and it was delightful).

Have fun!!!!

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 6/14/2009 9:33AM

    That dinner sounds like so much fun! I live for wine and patios :)!

Running is just the best, isn't it? I am having to take a forced hiatus because of blisters caused by those dang mizunos I ordered, I ran at the beach in my old ones and my feet are WRECKED now :(. I also need a pedicure but I figure getting a pedi when you have open blisters on your feet is just ASKING to go on the Tyra show after contracting some leg fungus, so I am going to hold off.

I think I am getting a bit of a cold (sore throat and tight lungs) however my MO is to ignore it unless I am running a fever.

You might want to hold off on buying a dress for the wedding because you may be a smaller size by July. I predict the dress for the bbq no longer requires sucking in, as well. But I sometimes force myself to wear something a little more "body conscious" to those types of things to force myself not to overdo it :P.

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Did you know you can map your run on SparkPeople?

Saturday, June 13, 2009

I don't know if this is a new feature, but I just found it for the first time today! (There was a link from the start page.) I used it to find out that my bike ride this morning was almost 10 miles. I did encounter a couple glitches though. One, once I had saved the route I couldn't figure out how to get back to the stats to see how many calories it said I'd burned, and second, when I tried the button to add the ride to my fitness tracker, a blank window popped open and nothing happened. The same thing is happening right now with trying to add the address as a link to this blog entry.

(Also, I'm not too concerned with estimates of calories burned anyway, because different methods of calculating calories burned seem to give very different numbers.)

Anyway, today's the first sunny day we've had here since last weekend (nice timing, huh?) and it was a beautiful bike ride through residential areas, downtown, country roads, and trails!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEFANIE822 6/13/2009 4:45PM

    After you save your route, go back to the fitness maps page and near the top there is a small link that says go to my saved routes. From there, you can add it to your fitness tracker. This is one of my favorite features of Spark!!

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KENSINGTONC 6/13/2009 4:31PM

    I started a comment but my cat stepped on the keypad and just deleted it - ha! Anyway, awesome feature for when I'm not wearing Garmie. Thanks!

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DAMIENDUCKS 6/13/2009 2:57PM

    huh...didn't know they added that--I'll be checking it out for sure! I usually use b/c it gives elevations, too. Enjoy your sunny day--it's the same weather here; I just got back from 34 miles of biking! Love it when it's not too hot, not too cold!

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 6/13/2009 1:54PM


I use to get the distance of my runs or bike rides.

Do you find spark has the lowest calculations of calories burned for things?

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Oh....We're Halfway There! (and 5K Calculations)

Friday, June 12, 2009

Today I weighed in at 152.8, which means that I have now lost 12.2 pounds and have 12.8 more pounds to go! I am being optimistic and thinking that this weekend, after sleeping in late, my weight will be down even more, so today is the day that I'm celebrating being halfway to my goal, even though I'm off by a few tenths of a pound. :)

By the way, it took me 9 weeks and 5 days to lose the first half of the weight. That is about 1.25 pounds per week. If I keep up this pace, I will be at goal (140 pounds) by August 21, 2009. :) :) :)

Also, as the math nerd that I am, I just did some calculating that I'd like to share, though I admit this is mostly for my own future reference more than for the makings of an interesting blog. A few weeks ago I wrote about my formula for determining 5K average speed based on total time: 186 divided by total time. (Example: 186 divided by 24 equals 7.75. This means that in order to finish a 5K in 24 minutes, you would need to run an average speed of 7.75 mph.) The number 186 came from 60 minutes times 3.1 miles (5 kilometers is approximately 3.1 miles).

Today I turned the formula around to figure out what the total 5K time would be based on average speed. This formula is: 186 divided by average mph. Record the number before the decimal for total minutes, then subtract it out to get left with just the decimal, and multiply that by 60 to get the seconds. (Example: 186 divided by 7.2 equals 25.8333333. Do 25.8333333 minus 25 equals 0.8333333. Multiply 0.8333333 times 60 which equals about 50. This means that an average speed of 7.2 mph would mean that the total 5K time would be 25:50.)

Here's what I came up with:

7.0 mph - 26:34
7.1 mph - 26:12
7.2 mph - 25:50
7.3 mph - 25:29
7.4 mph - 25:08
7.5 mph - 24:48
7.6 mph - 24:28
7.7 mph - 24:09
7.8 mph - 23:51

My probably-way-too-ambitious goal that I dreamt up a few weeks back was to finish my upcoming race in 24 minutes and that meant I'd have to run an average of 7.75 mph. As you can see in yesterday's blog, I have not been able to get even close to that yet, even though I'm training on a treadmill which is easier than running outside. The fastest I've been able to go lately is 25:45. If I want to beat that in my next pace training run, I should shoot for an average speed of 7.3 mph. I can do that!! Once I'm over this darn cold, and I'm well rested, well fed, and I've had my coffee, I can do that! Then the next time I can try for 7.4 mph and work my way up to 7.7 or 7.8 if I can get there in time - my race is only 16 days away and I only pace train once a week or so. Even if I don't have time to work my way up to that speed, I can still PR because my fastest official 5K RACE time was somewhere between 28-29 minutes (can't recall precisely). I will be happy with any PR at all, but I would be very proud of a sub 27 or 26 minute time, and my dream goal is 24 minutes.

Happy Friday!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARATHONER340 6/15/2009 7:27PM

    I generally run much faster in races than I do in training and I, too, end up doing a lot of speedwork on the treadmill (mostly because it's more convenient than driving to a track! I'd much prefer outside!) I generally always run at a 1% incline to make it more similar to running outside. But my point here was...I bet you'll run faster than you think in the 5k! Good luck! Can't wait to hear about it! =)

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CREATINGMYSELF 6/13/2009 12:03AM

    I remember I was on the treadmill one day and I got frustrated because the 'up speed arrow' wasn't moving fast enough. So I planted my finger on it angrily and pressed down as hard as I could. Next thing I knew I was flying off the treadmill. And when I got up, brushed myself off (and pretending like it didn't happen), I looked at the speed... it was 7.8 mph.

You are a mad woman-- but in a good way :) Your dedication and enthusiasm is contagious! And congrats on being half-way, that is SUPER cool!

Comment edited on: 6/13/2009 12:03:32 AM

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KJNE8O 6/12/2009 10:03PM

    YAY on the weight!!!

And yeah - you're a total math nerd!

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SWEATONCEADAY 6/12/2009 8:14PM

    congrats on your weight loss and good luck with your race!

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FITGIRL15 6/12/2009 7:18PM

    Way to go Susan! I'm very proud of you for losing your weight the healthy way (1.25 pounds a week is AWESOME!!! Very maintainable!) and you are definitely adopting a lot of healthy lifelong skills in the process!

Good Luck on those running targets!

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KENSINGTONC 6/12/2009 7:00PM

    Great blog! The math kind of makes my head spin but I understand the point. I bet you'll be MUCH faster than you think in the actual race, with the adrenaline etc - at least I always have been. Anyway, great job with the weight loss and meeting your fitness goals!

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BRIAN36 6/12/2009 6:07PM

    Just a link to save you all the math, it made my head spin! LOL

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RUN_LIFT_EAT 6/12/2009 5:58PM

    I find that I am a *LOT* faster at an actual race, which is why some training schedules will have you run a shorter race (probably not for a 5k, but you get my point) as part of your training.

That is so awesome that you are halfway to goal!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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ZIRCADIA 6/12/2009 3:20PM

    I'm feeling you!!! My goal is a sub 30min 5K, but the fastest I've ever run 3 miles was 30:18, so add the extra .1 miles and I have no idea where that will put me. I suppose I could do some math, but since it clearly puts me over 30min I'm not gonna bother. :) HAHAHAHAHA. BUT!!! My 5K PR is like 33:26, so I figure I should be able to at least set a new PR tomorrow even if I don't reach my sub-30 goal yet. HAPPY FRIDAY and HAPPY HALFWAY! WOOHOO!!!

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5K Times

Thursday, June 11, 2009

I've decided to record all of my fastest 5K training times together in one place - here! So far, these have all been done on a treadmill. I know I have gone faster than this in the past, but it would take quite a bit of searching through old blogs to find my old best times. So these are just my best times since I started training for my 6/28/09 New Charles River Run 5K race.

6/11/09 26:10
6/02/09 25:45
5/29/09 27:15
5/24/09 26:59

I'm not sure if I can attain this kind of speed outside. Usually my tough runs are on the treadmill and my very long or easy runs are outside. I will have to try doing some speed or pace work outside! I also need to sometimes do speed work on the weekend, when I'm fully rested and caffeinated. I'm sure I could be faster than after a long day at school, which is when most of my pace workouts happen.

Also, a couple days ago I did my first hill intervals on the treadmill. I only had 12 minutes before I had to leave, so it was very quick and easy. I stayed at 6.0 mph most of the time, but I bumped it up to 7.0 at the end. I alternated between 0% incline and 4% incline, and each interval was four minutes. Afterwards, my knees hurt a bit, but that could have been a coincidence. Next time, I will try something similar, but with more speed.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SEEHOLZ 6/12/2009 12:25PM

    Those are some great times! Well, I haven't been in any race shape this year, so I'm lving through others I guess-LOL! For me, outside times are slower, but I've heard from 2 or 3 other Sparkers that TM is harder... I wonder if they run on a higher incline ( even though they claimed 1 and 2 %). Be careful with the speedwork on the treadmill, as you could easily pull something--- even though the surface is more gentle, something about the calibration makes it more strenous for speedwork ( compared to a track--- there you got to worry about the same direction) Anyways, your 5K is coming up soon--- you are well on your way to that PR!

P.S: I'm really glad you're finding that balance. It totally gives me hope for myself!

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FITGIRL15 6/12/2009 12:00PM

    Nice times!
I've never ran a 5K on the treadmill for time... maybe I'll try that someday! (Today? LOL)
I think outside will slow you down, just due to the nature of the beast... a treadmill is very consistent terrain, no hills (unless you make them) and no obsticles to worry about (traffic, other runners, etc..) Not to mention how much scenery you are missing out on while running on a treadmill! My favorite part!!!

PS.. I've been told by many-a-trainer never to run on a treadmill with an incline of less then 2%... it's actually like running downhill and very bad for your knees! Could be a source of the knee pain for you! I always bump the incline up to 2 before I even get started!!!

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SKYFYRE 6/12/2009 6:37AM

    You are a speed tracking queen! Great job on your running!

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JENONTHEROX 6/11/2009 9:57PM

    I am just winded & so impressed by your times... emoticon

& even MORE impressed doing hill work at 6-7mph... 7mph are my sprints these days. I take my hills up anywhere from 3-8% & run at 5.4-5.5 mph-ish (around my first mile/my warmup pace). I know, I know, never compare, but hey, it's human nature. I think your runs are outstanding.

& sigh, bless caffeine. I hate workouts & especially runs without it in my system. emoticon

emoticon emoticon

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ZIRCADIA 6/11/2009 9:24PM

    Girl, you are so much faster than me!!! :D You ROCK!!! But yeah -- I'm curious definitely to see how you would do 1) outside, 2) rested and caffeinated. :) hahaha.

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KJNE8O 6/11/2009 9:20PM

    Wow - you are a speed demon! Definitely try it outside, see how that goes.

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