Monday, March 25, 2013
I haven't been to the gym since June 2012 (had surgery for spinal injury in July), and yesterday I decided that it was high time I got back to it. I told myself that it was okay to take it easy and not push myself too hard, since it was my first workout in many months. I decided to walk between 3.5-4 mph on the treadmill, occasionally varying the incline, and perhaps try running one minute at a time as a start. After 7 minutes of warming up with walking, I started my first minute of running. When that first minute was almost up, I decided to try for two minutes since I felt fine. At two minutes, I decided to just keep going until I needed to walk again, thinking I might hit the 3-minute mark if I was lucky. Long story short, every minute that passed, I felt like I could keep going. It was an incredible feeling, and I got to over 8 minutes, 30 seconds, before I started to feel like I was going to need to stop. I pushed myself to make it to 10 minutes of continuous, non-stop running!
I know that to some, 10 minutes of non-stop running is easy, and to others, it's an unimagineable feat. I tend to fall into the latter camp. For me, accomplishing 10 minutes of running is a big, big deal. The longest I had ever run non-stop was probably 3-4 minutes back when I was trying the Couch to 5k program a year ago. I got to about the third week of the program when I quit. Running 10 minutes non-stop is something that I had no intention of trying prior to arriving at the gym yesterday, and if anyone had told me I would leave the gym having run 10 minutes, I would have thought they were crazy. I am so proud of myself for somehow, out of nowhere, proving to myself that I have it in me to accomplish a physical goal that to me, is a big freaking deal. I am thrilled to know that I can do this! And if 10 minutes is possible for me now, then I'm sure 20 minutes will one day be possible, too.
Monday, May 14, 2012
I began the Dukan diet last Monday, May 7. Results and observations:
1. I lost 8.5 lbs
2. Carb cravings disappear after a couple of days--carb thoughts do not.
3. Doing this diet has made me notice how much I was engaging in emotional/bored eating. Here's why--this diet is incredibly boring. I'm doing my best to be creative with my P/V recipes, but the diet is still boring. There are very few foods to really look "forward" to. My sister and I celebrated Mother's Day with my mom yesterday with literally NOTHING to snack on. No chips, no pizza, no Mother's Day bakery cake or chocolates .... So the point is, it's forcing me to notice that 97% of the times when I have indulged or snacked have been due to boredom, celebration, or self-comforting. It's really enlightening to see how little my body tells me I need to snack and consume through the day. Who wants to have a "treat" of chicken breast, right? You wouldn't eat it unless you were hungry, right? It's true. So when I start thinking, "I'd like to eat something right now," and I look at the options of WHAT I can eat, it causes me to pause and realize, "Well, I'm not hungry, so I really don't want that piece of salmon."
4. I'm feeling better ... for the most part. Within 3 days of the diet, I could move more easily. I haven't had a headache the whole week, which is saying something for me. It's helping me emotionally to be less dependent on food for entertainment/comfort.
5. Time-consuming. If you do not like or want or have time to cook, then this is a terrible diet for you. You CANNOT do this diet without cooking and planning ahead. It's impossible. And if you're doing this diet with a live-in partner, you'd better make sure you're BOTH willing to cook, shop, clean up, etc. Because believe me, one of you will be bitterly resentful of the other in less than a week if you don't.
What do I like about this diet? Well ...
1. It's simple--it's straightforward what you can/cannot eat, and there's very little confusion or guessing games about allowed foods.
2. I am not often hungry. The only times I am hungry are the times when I've had to go too long between meals. You're allowed to eat unlimited quantities of the allowed foods as you wish--thing about it is, who wants to eat 3-4 chicken breasts in a sitting?
3. You achieve weight loss consistently (so far).
4. It's helping me with the emotional/psychological issues around overeating and bingeing and choosing junk over healthy foods. I'm learning to look forward to a cup of hot tea while I watch my evening television or movie, instead of chocolate bars.
5. I am prediabetic, so this type of low-carb diet is very helpful to regulate my fasting sugar levels and help me to get out of the prediabetic range. I already feel better.
6. The phases of the Dukan diet are designed to help you phase back into "normal" eating again, without gaining the weight you lost. I especially like that idea. You don't eat like a freak forever, just until the weight is off. Then you start to eat normally, phasing back in reasonable amounts of bread, fruit, cheese, starchy items, and higher-calorie meals.
What I don't like:
1. It's very strict. It's hard. It's boring as hell. You have to plan ahead--I spend 15-20 minutes every night cooking my breakfast and packing my work food for the next day. That's not a lot of time, but woe be to she who forgets to do that one night. You are screwed the next day.
2. No social life. No drinking, no pizza = no friend time for me. :(
Can I continue on this plan? Only time will tell. Right now I feel pretty strong.
Thursday, April 05, 2012
I'm on my second week of C25k. Leading up to yesterday, I inadvertently took a week off from the program due to evening activities (I work out after work) and weather (I don't want to run at the gym). So it had been Wednesday to Wednesday that I went without doing a C25k workout. Well, yesterday I went out, and while it was my most challenging workout so far, I noticed two very positive changes:
1. My right knee is better. Okay, I don't have any legit knee problems, but since I began the program, my right knee has been wonky ... not painful or sore, but just a little weird, feeling slightly unstable and weak. On the run parts of my workouts, I can even hear a very soft crunching sound. Well last night, as I began the 5th running segment of my workout, I noticed that the crunching sound was gone! My right knee made no noise at all during my last two running segments! AND, the little weird feeling has gone away. It does not feel 100% perfect, but it's almost back to normal! Is it possible that last night's jaunt worked the wonkiness out of my knee? Regardless of this improvement, I've ordered a knee brace for extra support and will start using it soon.
2. NO SHIN SPLINTS! This one shocked me completely! The first four times I ran, going every other day, I would return with extremely sore shins. I didn't let them get me down, because I knew it was just my legs' reaction to a new exercise and that the muscles around my shins were being challenged in a different way. I looked up shin splints on the 'net a few times to find out if I was going to hurt myself if I continued, and I determined that I would be fine as my body got used to it. Well, as I said earlier, I took an entire week off from the C25k program and last night was the first night I went back out. NO SHIN SPLINTS! It's nearly 2 p.m. the next day, and I have NO SORENESS in my shins at all! I guess that's one good thing that came from the week of no C25k--my shins healed and now they are ready and rarin' to go on more walk/runs! I'm so excited!
One major lesson learned from yesterday's workout:
Don't skip an entire week! Last night's workout was the hardest I've experienced--harder than the very first workout, even--and at least twice I had to talk myself out of walking the last 20-30 seconds of my running segments. I pushed through and completed the workout as planned, but it was a major feat. I know it's because of the time off. My new vow to myself--stick to an every-other-day schedule, and no more than two off days in between if it does become necessary to miss a workout.
One last comment about C25k:
I love it!
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
I begin my new yoga class a week from Sunday, and I am really looking forward to it. I'm not sure a lot of people will get this, but it was kind of a big deal for me to sign up for it. I put everything off until I'm thinner, but not anymore! I found the classes, emailed the instructor, and just said, "To hell with it!" and signed up. I am proud of myself for doing that.
Now I am thinking about all the other things I want to do. I contacted an old friend I used to work with recently to see if she'll give me tennis lessons. Learning how to play tennis is one of my goals for this year. I "played" it a couple of summers ago and LOVED it so much, I'd wake up every morning ready to get back on the court. But, I didn't technically learn how to play it for real. This friend of mine is a tennis coach, so I contacted her and she has agreed to give me lessons starting in May!
Now that I have signed up for yoga and found some inexpensive tennis lessons, I've looked into other activities I've wanted to do. I've found an adult basic ballet class that meets once a week at a local ballet school. Although I am not at the point where I want to sign up for this yet, I have made a new goal: when I hit my main goal weight of 150 (hopefully by the end of this year), I will sign up for this class. I would love to get some ballet training for the strength, posture, and flexibility it brings. I know you might be thinking that I shouldn't put it off for when I'm thinner, but I challenge YOU to get into a leotard at 216 pounds!
I am feeling so optimistic right now. One of my most desperate prayers was answered yesterday, and I am so happy and humbled that God has sent me a miracle. I have already been feeling pretty positive about my weight loss--I've lost 8 pounds since the beginning of the year, 2 of which came off after I committed to SP a couple of weeks ago. I have not weighed myself this week, but we'll see whether I've had any more progress tomorrow or Friday. I was telling my mom about the yoga and tennis and about the ballet class I want to try when I reach goal weight, and I found myself saying, "I am NOT a fat person. There's a fit, sporty person inside me!" I really believe this is true. I am a thin person. I am not meant to be a fat person. There's a person inside me who wants so much to be fit and athletic, and I WILL become that person.
Monday, February 09, 2009
Well, I've sustained a little more bad luck this week. Apparently, the plumbers severed my cable line when they drilled an enormous hole into the wall right where the cable hook-up is. So, Comcast is coming over tomorrow to see what they can do. I am having to bug my sister to keep coming over to my house to wait for repair guys for all the different household catastrophes that have been happening. I hate having to ask her to do this for me.
My sister tells me that I need to read The Secret, which is a book that came out recently. Basically, the idea is that what you attract into your life is a result of your own thinking. For instance, if you are constantly thinking about how crappy your life is, crappy things will happen in your life. If you are positive and think about how good your life is going to be, your life will be good. I have not read this book, but I do believe in this philosophy. It's just that it is damn HARD to try to be positive when you are in the middle of so many things falling apart! If I could just have some time to recover before the next thing happens, maybe I could regain my positive attitude. I think that I am generally a positive person. I know for sure that I was a couple of years ago. I want to be again. I just really need a break. I need everything in my house to work correctly and I need to be able to pay my bills. I am a decent person and I strive to better myself and I work hard--surely, good things MUST come to such a person, right? Why is it that so many people who don't work hard have it so good? Is it because they follow The Secret?
I have noticed over the past week that I have not been bingeing as much as I am prone to do. I haven't exactly been a saint, but I have been probably 5 times more mindful of my eating and I haven't had any major pig-out sessions. As in, I haven't had any moments where I've parked on the couch and eaten about 2,000 calories in less than an hour. That might not sound like much to a lot of people, but it gives me hope. I believe that I have deep issues around food--my ability to avoid bingeing this week (especially at that one moment on Friday night when I wanted to) encourages me that I can break the cycle and have a healthy relationship with food. There was also a moment today at work when I wanted to go to the downstairs convenience store and buy myself one of those movie-size bags of raisinets. But, I did not do it. I had a cup of sugar-free Swiss Miss and a 100-calorie bag of grasshopper cookies. It's not veggies and hummus, but it's a huge departure from my usual behavior. It saved me about 500 calories, 70 grams of sugar, and $2.50. And, it DID satisfy my afternoon snack craving!
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