Monday, August 15, 2011
Last Summer I gained--a lot. Like 20 pounds a lot. Oh, I had my excuses--I got a new scale (yeah, okay, that *might* have accounted for 3? of it?), my daughter was starting kindergarten in the Fall, so I wanted to spend as much time with her as possible...etc. But when it came right down to it, I COULD have found time to exercise, I COULD have said no to the homemade ice cream...but I didn't.
This Summer, I decided, was going to be different. This Summer, I realized that taking time to exercise didn't mean I was a bad mom. Quite the opposite, actually. It meant that I care enough about my kids to want to be healthy and a good example for them. I have also been diligent about tracking every single calorie I consume. Because you know what? I'm eligible to be on the BLC's maintenance team now. And I LIKE that idea. I want to STAY there.
So, here's the thing, I have gained this summer because I haven't been as strict on my gym time as I am when school is in session, but THIS summer, I'm up 4 pounds, not 20. The difference? The difference is in the choices I make. When my husband suggested the other day that we go to a local ice cream shop after dinner, I countered with, "How about TCBY?" They've got a sugar free White Chocolate Macadamia Nut frozen yogurt that is so good that I don't WANT to top it with anything else. I can have my 4 oz serving for 80 calories. :) Hubby's happy, kids are happy, I'm happy.
It's all about the choices. Today I was feeling stressed. We've got some things going on at home that, while not awful (don't worry friends. :D), are stressful nonetheless. I even dreamed about the situation last night and unfortunately, my subconscious gave me the worst possible outcome. So this morning, I was playing with my kids and I swear, I could HEAR the bag of chips CALLING me from the pantry (okay, why I still have chips after nearly 4 years on Spark is another blog for another day. ;D). I REALLY wanted to answer their call. Instead, I said, that's it kids, we gotta get out of here. I threw on my workout clothes and went to the gym to take a Pilates/Yoga class instead. Man, did I ever feel better when I was done! And really, when was the last time I ever emotionally ate and said I felt better when I was done? NEVER.
It's all about the choices.
Saturday, July 09, 2011
Before I get into the recap of today's race, I just want to take a second to thank all of you for your encouraging words of support. They really helped me today!
Okay, so in my last blog I ended with DLF>DNF>>DNS. Well, I did better than the ones who didn't finish. Oh, and one other person. lol. This race was the toughest one I've ever done. We had a huge storm last night that dumped an inch and a half of rain on the course. It was a muddy, slick mess.
The race started at 8:30. What possessed them to start so late, I'll never know, but the temperature was already a "balmy" 82 degrees with 93% humidity at start time. They didn't have us go in waves, which is what I'm used to doing at the White Water Center so there was a bottle neck getting over the start line and again when we entered the trail. First water stop was at 2.6 miles and Mel, I thought of you. They had Gatorade and water. I opted for the water, which I was glad about because I slopped it all over me. He he he. Right after the water stop, the 3.5 milers and the 8.25 milers split up. Would you believe I was STILL tempted to go with the 3.5 milers? Not to worry, I didn't. ;)
Once the 3.5 milers went their own way, it got very quiet and peaceful. There were 4 times as many 3.5 mile runners as there were 8.25. Just before the 4 mile mark, I was coming down a steep hill. So steep, in fact, that I slowed way down because it looked really slippery. A sharp curve was approaching so I put my hand on a tree to steady myself. Unfortunately, I lost my footing and that WET tree did diddly squat to prevent the face plant. DOH! I was covered in mud. However, I did a quick check to make sure nothing was hurt (and that no one saw my moment of grace, lol) and continued on.
Up and down and up and up and down...twisting, turning, slipping, sliding...it was crazy. About 6 miles in I had to start walking. There was a hill that I actually thought I was going to have to use my hands to help me climb. I couldn't find my running legs after that. And, truth be told, I wanted to stop. I didn't think I had it in me to go on. But I just kept repeating to myself, "Don't stop. No matter what. Don't stop. Walking is okay, but DON'T STOP!" And so I pushed on. It helps that I told so many people that I was doing this race and I didn't want to have to admit that I didn't finish.
I was running solo for most of the race, but at mile 7, I PASSED someone! WHOO HOO! Small victory, but it was just what I needed to help me find the strength to push on and run to the end.
I am happy to say that I crossed the finish line at a SPRINT--well, let me rephrase that, it was probably the slowest run you can do and have it considered a run, but it FELT like a sprint. He he he.
I don't have an official time yet, but unofficially, I finished in just under 2 hours. I had a secret goal to finish in under 100 minutes and when I realized out on the course that it was no longer mathematically possible for me to do that, I felt so defeated. That was about the time that I wanted to give up. However, I decided NOT to let that set back keep me from making it to the finish line. And I could still finish in under 2 hours! So I made that my new goal. I'm glad to say that I met it...just barely, but it's a big ol' GOAL MET! And just think, when I go to do this next year--because OH HECK YEAH I'm doing it again--I'll have a baseline to work to beat. All in all, I enjoyed it. I know what adjustments I need to make in my training (like running in the heat and humidity instead of just on the treadmill in the A/C!!!) so that I CAN beat that baseline next year!
Now, if you know me, you know that I see connections in everything so if you'll indulge me for just a bit more, I'd like to share with you the connections I've made between this race experience and my weight loss journey.
A) Don't look for the easy way out. Sure you might have short term success, but the hard work is worth it in the end.
B) You've heard it before, but I'm going to say it again...fall down 7 times, get up 8.
C) Don't be afraid to fail because even if you do, you're still further along than you would be if you hadn't tried at all.
D) Surround yourself with support. I think that at one point in my race, and at MANY points on my weight loss journey, I would've packed it in if I hadn't known that I had people cheering for me and encouraging me.
E) Don't let set backs stop you from reaching your ultimate goal. It's like the Itsy Bitsy Spider...she got washed out of the spout, but did she stop? NO! Because she knew that the sun would be coming up and drying all the rain, so she started back up that spout again. We can do that in our own lives with our own goals.
F) If something didn't work out quite like you'd hoped, rather than being disappointed, USE that experience to make yourself better.
G) It's OKAY to readjust your goals.
H) HAVE FUN! After all, if you're not, then you're missing out!
Friday, July 08, 2011
I enjoy running, but I'm not very fast and I am not willing to take the time away from my family that long distance road running (training) requires. So last year, when I found an 8K TRAIL race, I thought hey, why not. Well, I LOVE it! It's very peaceful running on trails and even if you run the same trail over and over, you never have the same trail twice...Oh look! A fallen tree branch that wasn't there last time!
I ran the 8K trail race again this year and shaved off 5 minutes from my time. This isn't because I'm in better shape (last year's race came only a few weeks after a half marathon) but because I understand trail runs a little bit better.
Coming off of that race, I was feeling on top of the world, so I signed up for an 8.25 MILE trail race that is tomorrow. Yesterday I got my email with the race map and last minute instructions and all of the sudden I was gripped by an almost paralyzing fear. WHAT was I thinking? The longest distance I've done in the last year is 7 miles. That was two weeks ago. Granted, I felt pretty good and could've gone on (if time had allowed), but that was two weeks ago. So there I sat, with a nauseous feeling in my stomach. Wondering how in the heck I got myself into this mess. I started thinking, hey, I can just go do the 3.5 miler. Yeah, that's what I'll do. I'll go for the shorter distance. It's supposed to be crazy hot and humid tomorrow (race starts at 8:30 EST) so I'm completely justified in doing that. And hey, that still beats not doing anything, right?
I got as far as the race website to look up how to change races. And then something caught my eye. There's a time limit on the race, but all you have to do is average a 16 minute mile. 3.75 mph. Oh my gosh! I CAN DO THAT! Even if I have to walk the whole stinkin' thing, my walking pace is 4.2. What was I thinking even CONSIDERING going down to the shorter race?? I will NOT let fear cripple me and keep me from succeeding! So what if I come in last place? It's not really last place is it? All of the people who considered signing up but didn't are not going to finish in as good a time as I will. And if I'm unable to finish? So what? Does that make me less of a person? Does it make my effort not count? I don't think so!
I discussed this with a good friend at my gym later on in the morning yesterday. And he was saying he's experienced the same thing when it comes to our gym's boot camp. It's a ridiculously tough class. He said that he has to really psych himself up to go and even when he's IN the class he'll think to himself, "You're 54 years old. What are you doing here?" But when he finishes, he's ALWAYS glad he did it.
We cannot let FEAR or fear of failure keep us from reaching our goals. When I started my weight loss journey nearly 4 years ago, I was faced with being very nearly morbidly obese. I had so far to go that it seemed an almost insurmountable task. I was afraid of failing, but I was more afraid of not trying. But here I am, 4 years later a mere pound away from a healthy BMI. It IS possible!
Keeping these things in mind, I AM going to run AND finish that 8.25 miles!
Dead Last Finish is greater than Did Not Finish, which GREATLY trumps Did Not Start!
Friday, July 01, 2011
We're focusing on declaring freedom from a from a couple more pounds as we create the stars and stripes that make up Old Glory!
Stars: Perform a minimum 50 reps of ST daily to earn a star! (Reps must be the same exercise!)
Stripes: Consume 7 glasses water daily AND 6 freggies consisting of AT LEAST 1 each Red, White and Blue to earn stripes!
Earn both a and and celebrate the day with !
F~Star: , Stripes: , Fireworks:
S~Star, Stripes, Fireworks
S~Star, Stripes, Fireworks
M~Star, Stripes, Fireworks
T~Star, Stripes, Fireworks
Minutes toward climbing the Statue of Liberty: 30
Total: Stars, Stripes, Fireworks
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
50m length ~~ Complete 50 Reps ST daily 1 pt...ea set of 50
25m width ~~ Complete 25 Mins planned Cardio daily 1 pt...ea 25 mins
8 race lanes ~~ 8 full servings freggies daily 1 pt...all or nothing
2 open lanes ~~ 2 quart (8 glasses) water daily 1 pt...all or nothing
F: ST~5, C~4, F~1, W~1
S: ST~20 (gotta love Group Power!), C~2, F~0, W~1
S: ST~2, C~1, F~1, W~1
M: ST~2, C~2, F~0, W~1
T: ST~3, C~3, F~1, W~1
Total Points: 54
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