Monday, October 30, 2006

Renewed Spirit?!

I am feeling awesome and very confident right now. I'm not sure what exactly happened but I am feeling great! I was able to keep my diet very clean on Saturday (football tailgate) and my weight stayed the same. It usually goes up on the weekends and then I fight all week long just to get back to square one.

Ever since then I have just been feeling really good about the whole thing. I have had great workouts and my eating has been much better (still room for improvement but I'm working on that). Today is on track to being a perfect day - exactly according to plan. We had one of our 2 Halloween parades/parties today and I didn't have one bite of any of the treats. It really makes you feel good when you set a goal and then achieve it!

I know that this feeling could be gone at any moment but I am definitely going to ride this wave for all it is worth! I am loving life right now! There are 2 quotes that have really struck a cord with me lately: "Bad food choices are NOT an option!" taken off the LL forum and Every quit hurts and every success helps! (paraphrased from David Greenwalt).

Off to make dinner - salmon, rice and salad (yummy)!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Confused but.....

Confused but happy. Yesterday was not a good day food-wise but when I got on the scale this morning, I was down to 133.5#. I don't understand it but I'm definitely happy!

I've had a better day today although my son was trying REALLY hard to send me into a stress eating episode. I didn't give in though and that made me not only happy but proud of myself.

Something else really cool happened tonight. I was at a store getting something for my daughter's Halloween costume and decided to try on some slacks (my others are all too big now). I wasn't sure exactly what size I was so I grabbed a 10 and an 8. You guessed it, the 10 was way too big. I slipped into the 8 and had room to spare - what a rush that was!!!!!! Now, let me add that they were probably the ugliest pants I've ever seen but I was just going for size. Speaking of clothes, I'm not one of those "trendy dressers" - never have been and never will be. Before I lost the weight I had a couple of pairs of simple pleated Dockers and I love them. I'll be darned if I can find a similar pair. Why in the world to clothes makers get rid of one of the most basic and classic styles? I know it is to make money but come on! All I want to find is a simple, basic pair of pants! Rant over!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

"You can do anything you want, but....."

"You can do anything you want, but you can't do everything you want." David Greenwalt

I don't think truer words were ever spoken, at least for me. I am finding that I have trouble balancing multiple things in my life. When I'm at work, I don't have any trouble multi-tasking. However, when it comes to balancing multiple things in my life I definitely struggle. Right now I'm trying to get things around the house in order because of the Holidays. On top of the normal holiday hub-bub, both my kids have December birthdays. So we have Thanksgiving and then a bunch of parties right before Christmas.

My problem is that if I focus on the house, I tend to slack off on my weight loss goals. I am not gaining any weight, and I'm at the same weight I was in high school, but I'm not losing any weight either. My goal is to get down to 125# by December 8th but I find myself sabotaging myself day in and day out. I'm having a really difficult time focusing on the weight loss aspect of my life. I'm not sure how to remedy the situation so if anyone reads this and has any suggestions please let me know.

One thing I think I'm going to do is go out and buy myself a new pair of running shoes and use them as leverage. I will take a picture of them and then have my dh keep them. If I don't make my goal he will give them away to a charity. I will make this purchase with my own money so that it isn't a strain on the families budget. That is the only idea I've come up with so far.

I think another reason why I'm struggling is that I know I'm already in good shape. I look good and feel good and honestly, I'm not sure if I'm going to even like being at 125#. Is it really worth putting myself through all this? Sure there are some areas that I would like to "fix-up" a bit but overall I'm happy with the way I look. I'm babbling at this point but that is what the blog is for - right?

Hopefully, I will be able to find some answers and some direction.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Use It To Lose It - Day 1!

Today is the first day for my LL team. I started the day very excited and was able to get out for a 4 mile run and kept an 8 min/mile pace. It was a touch chilly out but it felt great and I was able to maintain the pace I set as a goal the night before. Overall, a great way to get the day started.

I knew going into it that today was going to be a challenging day because we were taking the kids to the zoo. At a minimum, I would be out of the house for 2 meals. I planned ahead and brought food for those meals and as a result have been able to stay clean. I am going to have my splurge dessert tonight and I'm really looking forward to that.

Tomorrow is going to be a challenge too because we have been invited to our friend Mary's house and there is always lots of eating going on there. I am really going to need to be rock hard tomorrow if I'm going to stay on track with my eating. I have been making some progress with my weight over the past couple of days and I definitely don't want to mess that up with one day of eating poorly.

Here's to having another great day tomorrow!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Let The Games Begin!

Starting tomorrow, I will be leading a team at Club Lifestyle. It is the first time I've done anything like this but I'm really looking forward to the challenge. A LOT of people signed up for the team so I'm hoping everyone will be very supportive of each other as well as push each other and challenge each other every single day.

I feel like I've been very successful today. My eating has been much better - not perfect but a huge step in the right direction!!! My lifting session went well (able to increase the weights on my shoulders, triceps and biceps. I was also able to get in an additional 35 minutes of cardio. I'm hoping that this successful day will manifest itself in some weight loss tomorrow morning.

My next big Transformation Goal is to take my weight down to 125#. If I lose 1 pound per week it will take 10 weeks to attain that goal. I would LOVE to be able to accomplish that in less time but as long as I get there I will be happy. Truth is, I'm not sure how I'm going to like being at 125 but I want to give it a look see - I can always bring my weight back up if I don't like the way it looks or feels. I will definitely keep posting about the transformation process!

Saturday, October 14, 2006

I'm Really Excited!

I'm getting a chance to help people with their fitness goals. This has come about in two ways at the same time. I've decided to start/lead a team at Club Lifestyle and some people at work are starting an 8 week program. I made some suggestions after taking a look at their initial plan and they really seemed to like the changes I offered. All I did was suggest some of the techniques that I learned from Coach David (leveraging being the biggest one). One person in particular seemed intrigued by the ideas and she is probably the one who needs the changes the most.

I can't express how excited I am about all this. I may also start exercising with another co-worker which would be really cool! I can't tell you the last time I had a chance to really workout with another person. It will definitely be a boost for my program!

Today (Sunday) is a new start for my program. I've already made some of my "staple" foods so that I have no reason to go off my nutrition plan. I want to make a couple other things too so that I'll have options and variety. I'm going to my parent's house today and I've already made a plan for the remainder of the day. Detailed planning has been a bit on the back burner lately but that is changing starting today!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Getting back in the groove

It feels good to get back into a routine again. I was able to get in a resistance training session yesterday. It was an easy one but it still felt good to pump the iron again! I also got out for an easy jog this morning. I'm taking it slow and easy on purpose - I don't want to jump in too quickly because of this silly cold. It doesn't seem to be getting much worse but it isn't really getting better either. The congestion is still sitting in my chest and my voice sounds quite froggy.

I'm also getting back in the groove at Club Lifestyle. I had let some of my routines slip - I wasn't lifting, I wasn't logging my food (which of course led to more and more "splurges") and overall my head just wasn't in the game. That changes starting today! I decided that it was time to step up and take control. As a result, I decided to start a team - we will be working hard for 6 weeks in preparation for the Holiday season. As this time of year approaches, our attention turns to family gatherings and holiday parties. If I want to look fabulous for these occasions I need to start now and kick things into high gear. What better way to do that than to try to get a bunch of people together and try and fire them all up. When I help others it totally fires me up too! I may also get the opportunity to help some of my co-workers. I'm really hoping that situations develops as well both for me and for them.

Assuming I still feel good physically, I'm lifting again tomorrow and trying to go heavier than I did on Wednesday. If I'm able to gradually increase my workouts, I'm hoping that I won't lose much fitness and will allow my body to heal at the same time. That's the plan anyway!!!

Monday, October 09, 2006

Race Day Results!

I couldn't have asked for a better day yesterday. The sun was shining and the temperature was perfect (about 50 degrees). The best part - NO WIND! The race had about 235 runners and because it was the 24th year that it was being run, everything ran very smoothly (no pun intended).

I was very excited about the race all morning. I thought I did a pretty good job at keeping myself calm. I packed all my stuff up and headed to check-in about 45 minutes before the race. After getting my race number I went out for a bit of a warm-up run. I had on pants and a long sleeve shirt (over my shorts and T-shirt that I was going to wear for the actual race) and boy did I feel heavy. I was sort of nervous at that point because I was just warming up and my legs felt heavy and tired - not a good feeling! However, once I took off the extra clothing I felt 100% better.

A couple of minutes before the start of the race I headed over to the starting line. Not many of the other runners had headed over yet so I tried to figure out where a good starting place would be. Then the other runners came over and I found myself back in the middle of the pack. It wasn't a bad place to start, I was just aiming for a touch closer to the front. The "gun" sounded and we were off. I got hemmed in a bit but not too badly. I was able to weave my way out of the congestion and settled into a nice pace.

My goal was a 7:30 pace and at the beginning of the race I had settled into a pace at about 7:40. I was pleased with this pace especially at the beginning but I knew I needed to go a touch faster if I wanted to make my goal time - if my chest cold would let me. I just tried to maintain a constant pace during the middle section of the race. However, once I hit the turn around cone (which meant I had about 3 miles left in the race) I decided it was time to see what I had left. I was feeling pretty good and as I was approaching the cone I counted the women who past me on the way back and I was the 21st woman in the race. So, when I hit the turn-around cone, I decided to see if I could start picking off the women and move up in the standings. To be honest, I was amazed that I was that far up in the overall standings (I had no idea where I stood in my age group). So one by one I started setting my sights on the woman right in front of me. Slowly but surely I started moving up on them and passing them.

At this point, I looked at my watch and my pace was at about 7:15. I wasn't sure if I would be able to maintain that pace for the rest of the race but I sure was going to give it a try. I just concentrated on the woman in front of me and catching her. As I neared the end of the course (about 3/10ths of a mile left) I passed the woman who was in 16th place and could see the 15th place woman. I kept my pace going and was reeling her in but I didn't know if I had enough course left. As I made the last turn into the straightaway to the finish, I looked at the race clock. I saw that if I gave it one last push I would make my goal time so I put it into overdrive. I passed the woman in front of me and made my goal time! My official race time was 1:09:48 (6 seconds faster than my goal time) and my official pace was 7:31 (last year's pace was 8:25). I ran almost a minute faster per mile this year than I did last year!!!

Needless to say I was thrilled! My family was at the finish and I heard my kids cheering me on at the end. Then after I got across the line they came running up to me and gave me a hug. Definitely the best part to the whole event!! There was only one more goal to try and get - finishing in the top three of my age group. Obviously I wasn't in total control of this one but I had given it my all and I was hoping to walk away with a plaque. After waiting around for a while the awards ceremony finally started. I waited for them to get to my age group and then I heard it. I had placed 3rd in my age group! To give you an idea about how things can change from year to year, I had also placed 3rd in my age group last year and my time was much slower.

Now the really insane part to the entire day. The winner of the race finished in 46:28 the second place finisher ran it in 47:11 and the third place finisher ran it in 49:28. I can't imagine how frustrating it must be to run 9+ miles in under 50 minutes and only place third in the race! BTW, the winner's pace was 5:00/mile. Those times simply blow my mind!!!

Now that the race is over, I'm going to take it easy for a couple of days. Probably get out for some walks but nothing too strenuous. I want to get rid of this cold I have and then start into a more balanced program for a while. I'll probably be shooting for 3 days of lifting and 3 days of running. I'm not sure what my next goal will be but there is a local 1/2 marathon in March and I'm leaning toward trying to run in that this year. I've wanted to do it the past 2 years but have gotten sick and haven't been able to get my training in. We'll just have to wait and see.

Thanks for all the support and for taking the time to read my race report!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Race Day!!!!

I've made it - the day is finally here!

The cold is still hanging around but I'm not going to worry about it. I'm going to give it my all. Hopefully I'll be able to hit my goal pace but if I don't, I'll know that I gave it everything I had both in training and on race day.

I'm really excited right now and I'm trying hard to keep everything nice and calm because I don't want to get too hyped up too soon. It looks like it is going to be a great day for the race. Sunrise is in a little less than an hour so it's still very dark right now. The temperature is 52 degrees which is what they are calling for at the start of the race - great running temperature. The skies are still pretty cloudy from the rain we had yesterday but that is supposed to clear out when the sun comes up. There also doesn't appear to be much wind, which in my book is an excellent thing!!

I'll leave in a little over an hour so that I have plenty of time to check-in and warm-up. I also want to make sure that I have lots of time to use the bathroom. It is always a big concern to me (especially during long races) because I tend to have to use the bathroom when I run. Running first thing in the morning (training runs) doesn't allow me the time to void the system and it is common for me to have to stop a run around mile 4 so that I can use the bathroom. It's part of the reason why I get up so early on race days. I eat at about 5:30 so that everything has time to work through my system. That way I get a chance to go at home and then at the race I can just do the last couple of clears.

Well, I guess it is about time to get the rest of my stuff together. My next entry will be with my race results - Wish me Luck!!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

One day until the race

Well, the day is almost here! Tomorrow morning at 8:30 am is the scheduled race start and I won't necessarily be at my best but I'm going to do everything I can to put up my best time.

Today's weather is cold and rainy. Fortunately, tomorrow is supposed to have better weather. I'm looking forward to a nice cool start. Hopefully there won't be much wind. There isn't much worse than running into a really strong wind - maybe running uphill and into a strong wind (LOL). I've run in all sorts of weather (including wet, icy snow) and I think I dislike the wind the most. It not only make the going harder but it also hurts my ears.

That's it for now. I will be getting up nice and early tomorrow so that I can get a nice hearty breakfast in (and hopefully go to the bathroom so I don't have to worry about it during the race). I will try and post tomorrow morning before I leave for the race.

Here's to having a healthy, fun and safe day tomorrow!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

I'm Getting Sick!

This is such a bad time to be getting sick! While I was typing my blog and some other things last night, I could just feel the scratchy throat start. I sort of expect to get a little bug after my race because of the energy expenditure but getting sick before the race was definitely not in the plans.

I did not do my run this morning and I'm not sure I'll do tomorrow's. I feel a touch guilty about it but I think it is better in the long run (no pun intended). There is that little voice in the back of my head telling me that if I don't run this week it will really hurt my performance. That may or may not be true but I do know that if I do run, it will definitely hurt my performance (if I still feel the way I do now.

I'm pretty bummed about the whole thing but I will not let it get me too down. I have a race coming up and I will be the best I can be. That is all we can ever ask of ourselves.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Tuesday - another day closer to the race!

I had a great run this morning. I ran 4 miles and my pace was 7:53/mile. My legs really felt like they had some spring to them. I'm hoping that it continues through Sunday!!!

Tomorrow is a 30 minute Tempo run. I've enjoyed the Tempo runs. I hadn't really done them before but I will definitely continue them after the race.

Speaking of after the race, I'm trying to figure out what my routine will be. I'm leaning toward running on Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday with Tuesday being a 3-4 miler, Thursday being a Tempo run or interval run & Saturday being a long run. Then on Monday, Wednesday and Friday I would do my resistance training (something I have left go by the way-side recently). However, I haven't decided whether I want to do a full-body routine 3 times per week or if I want to break it down some other way.

I have also been spending a lot of time recently re-evaluating my "Why". Coach David is big on knowing your "Why". This is something that I've always struggled with - my health has pretty much always been good and my family is relatively healthy. It occurred to me the other day that living this healthy lifestyle (like the one outlined in Leanness Lifestyle) is just a part of who I am. Without being able to exercise and live a healthy lifestyle, I would be a touch lost. Almost like I lost a part of me. Could I adjust, probably, but I don't want to! Maybe that's the point.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Race Countdown

Well, here we are. The week before the race and I am really ready! I have been working so hard for so long and I am champing at the bit for the race. Part of me just wants in to be over so that I can move my focus to something else. The other part of me just wants Sunday morning to be here so that I can put all my hard work to the test.

Hats off to Julie who ran the Portland Marathon, on Sunday, in 4:25! Julie, I've said this before, but you really inspire me! You have accomplished so much in the time that I've known you - you are amazing!

Tomorrow is a 4 miler. I'm trying to take it somewhat easy this week. Every once in a while I start to get the pre-race butterflies. Did I mention?....I can't wait until Sunday!!!!!