Tuesday, October 20, 2009

It's Not Pretty People

That ugliness right there....yes I know I need to repolish or unpolish my toe nails. Besides that, do you see the black coloring on two of my toe nails? Yes this is why I still can't wear my cute knee high boots and why I haven't run in 2 1/2 weeks. This is what happens when you buy cheaper running shoes a 1/2 a size too small and then run 26.2 miles in them. I know ridiculously stupid right? I slap myself for it. The big toe is still a bit puffy too. I finally could at least wear flats this last week. Before that was flip flops or open toed sandals. Also, I still very like I have sore weak muscles. It happens after I sit for awhile. I go to get up, and suddenly my inner thighs are yelling at me. Is this normal? I thought I'd be better by now.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Proud of Myself for Working Through the Hard

If you used to follow this blog, you know that I haven't posted in awhile. That's because I was working harder than I ever have before. I went back to work teaching at the end of August. This was about 2 weeks earlier than usual. And of course that happens when I'm training for my first marathon. One of you readers commented that it would be the hardest thing I've ever done and you were right. I knew the marathon itself would be hard, but I underestimated how hard the actual training would be. Right know I want to give a shout out to all working moms who have ran a marathon. It would be hard enough training for a marathon without having a full time job, but adding my teaching job PLUS being a mommy and a wife I was pretty much spent at the end of every day. So I'm sorry about my absent blogging and commenting, but I've been on survival mode for a few months and am now just trying to feel normal again.

On my heaviest training weeks, on a good day, I'd wake up early to run 3-4 miles, get ready for work, the kids ready for school, work for 7 hours, volunteer coach cross country for an hour after school, come home and fix my family dinner, run for 4-5 more miles, and then eat my own dinner. I was eating around 8 o'clock nightly. Then on my 2 weeks of running 40-43 miles a week, I had to add in finding someone to take my oldest child to his soccer games and go to cross country meets that were 3 hours and finally add in an Open House. Again, I am still recovering energy wise and my marathon was two weeks ago.

I ran the Portland Marathon on Oct. 4 and it is a fantastic marathon. My husband went with me. We flew in on Friday morning, got our rental car, found our hotel, and then tried to plan a route to get there since many roads and bridges were going to be closed the morning of the marathon. This is a closed marathon which makes it really great. It has fantastic crowd support and is MP3 friendly. I could not imagine running a marathon without my music! We got to do some sight seeing Friday and Saturday. Then on Sunday morning I was up at 4:45 am to get dressed. They told me that even though the marathon started at 7 am, we should be there before 6 and she didn't mean 5:55! We made it into downtown Portland around 5:45 am. It's the first time I was at a race in complete darkness. It's not easy going to the bathroom in a port-a-potty in the dark let me tell you! I went to the bathroom serveral times and I was getting nervous because my 1st 1/2 marathon started when I was in the bathroom. I did not want that to happen again. I made it out with about 2 minutes to spare! My hubs tried so hard to take pics of me at the beginning of the race, but our batteries were dead. He got some more battries during the race.

I felt really great the first 9 miles. After that I started feeling pain in my toes. My toes normally get blisters while I run, but this was a different feeling. I felt like my big toes were going numb. I made two critical mistakes for this race. First- bought new, cheaper shoes. They were my brand but a cheaper model. I do NOT know what I was thinking. I guess I thought since they were Saucony they would be good no matter what. I think I bought them a 1/2 a size too small. Second- a new running belt that I hadn't tried out before running. That wasn't my fault exactly. I ordered it online and expected it to come in much sooner than it did. Twice while I was running the stupid thing popped off my waist and I had to adjust it while running. At one point, I was running holding my i-pod cord with my teeth while wrapping the belt back around my waist!

A marathon is a different kind of animal than a 1/2 let me tell you. During a 1/2 I don't see people stopping to walk, stretch, or puke like I did during this race. It's a fairly easy course too. Many people I know have ran this for their first marathon. I saw so many supports holding signs for their loved one, ringing cow bells, bands playing along the course. It was really great, but I just wish I enjoyed it more. My toes were hurting so badly and then my calf started to hurt extremely bad. I was worried I would have to get it wrapped, but I didn't. But even through all of that pain I never thought about quitting. I stopped running twice...once to get more water in my fuel belt bottles and once to call my husband to tell him I was almost done. Unfortantly, my cell phone had also died. Luckily he was there and watched me finish. I finished before I thought I would. I think I said I would finish around 4:30 but I came in at 4 hours 5 minutes. I think I could have broken 4 hours if it weren't for the stupid shoes! At the end, I was done. It was so hard to walk. But the volunteers are there for you there as well as medics. They gave me my space blanket to keep warm. It seems weird after doing such vigorous activity to eat badly, but that's what happened. They were there giving me mini candy bars, Grandma's cookies, bags of chips, string cheese, a little bit of fruit, and my favorite....a large bottle of chocolate milk! Then I got a medal, a rose, a tree seeding, and a pin. Plus, my coveted finisher shirt!

For a full week afterwards, I could not walk normally. I had to wear sandals or flip flops since my toes were so swollen. They are black under my nails which means they will probably fall off. It was weird to hear myself say, "Walk normal," while completely sober! I took the Monday off of work to try to recover a little. But still through all of that pain, I still want to do another one. Someday! Just to see how much better I could do with the proper equipment. And out of 15 training weeks, I am also proud that only 1 time did I not get a run in. I ran through pain, injuries, colds, and a vacation where I fell and thought I broke my arm around mile 5 and still finished my 15 mile run. I am proud that my body could do this. This body of mine that was once prediabetic, asthmatic, sleep apnea and infertile ran a marathon. Not only that, but I am almost to my goal of running 1,000 miles this year. This body of mine! I just can't believe what a transformation I have made. I am usually very hard on myself, but finally I am filled with so much pride. Before if it was hard, it was so EASY to quit. Now, quitting is not an option for me! Here are a few pics, but we don't have many due to technical difficulties.
That's me in the pink coming around the corner for the finish!

Monday, August 24, 2009

I underestimated

So I am starting week 10 of my marathon training. I knew the marathon itself would be hard, but I completely underestimated how hard the actual training would be. I will be training for 4 months. School starts this week, so that will make training even harder. Currently, I am running 40 miles a week and running 5 times a week. On Tuesdays and Thursdays I usually have to do 8 miles and it's speed work. Those days are KILLING me! It's going to be tricky to try to fit in running 8 miles before my morning meetings on those days. I'll probably have to run them after school and I don't do well running with food in the belly. I will give myself props though for my long run on Saturday. Lately, I've been having to break my long run into parts so I was nervous having to do 16 miles straight. Last Thursday while running my 8 miler, I was dying and had to take at least 5 walk breaks. I think it was the time of day and running outside. On Saturday, I made sure to wake up early and the weather was great. Proudly, I was able to run all 16 miles without stopping! They were slow miles, but I kept saying to myself, "Slow and steady wins the race." I am the tortoise!

Another thing I underestimated when signing up was how hard a relay race would be. On August 14-15 I was part of a 12 person team to share the running responsibilities to cover almost 190 miles. How it works is, the 12 people are split into two vans of 6. The first van runs the first 6 legs while the 2nd van waits at an exchange area. Then the first van of people get to go eat, stretch, and rest while the van 2 runners go their 6 legs. You run 3 different legs over 2 days. Our race started on top of a mountain In Washington state at 7 am. I had to get up at 4:30 am to meet my team! Ouch!!! Our first runner got to participate in one of the races many contests: the wild wig contest. She had on a purple mullet wig with small little lights on the ends of the hairs. The second runner was in the wildest costume contest. Since our teams name was Team Roadkill, she placed a plastic bag over her that had stuffed animals with their stuffing hanging out of them all over it! I was runner #4 so I ran my first leg around 9:00 AM. My first leg was 6.1 miles. I had a sore tush from jet skiing the previous weekend so it hurt to run. The weather was not normal for August. It was actually a bit cold, windy, and we even got rained on. Not ideal summer weather, but with a van full of sweaty runners the cool weather was awesome!

We ate a light lunch at Subway before driving to wait at our exchange area. Normally, we'd walk around, lay out and stretch at this point. But it starting raining big time, so we all sat and waited in the van. Now running at race speed and then sitting for hours is not so great on the muscles. We all were stiffening up pretty quickly! I brought my marathon stick to try and roll out my muscles, especially the tush! When my 2nd leg came it was about 5:30 and it was getting stormy. The wind was blowing and then it started to rain on me. I didn't even realize I hurt myself, but when I finished running my 5.3 miles I had blood on the toe of my shoe. I guess the combo of bad socks and the rain caused a bit of blistering. When we all ran our 2nd time, we went for dinner this time at Applebees. I could have fallen asleep right there on the table. It was about 8:30 at night and I was ready for bed. We drove to our next exchange point where we were supposed to be able to roll out our sleeping bags to get a few hours sleep before our next run. The exchange point was at an amusement park. They said we could lay our sleeping bags out under their pavilions, on top of the picnic tables or on the cement and they were lighted. Since that didn't appeal to any of us we tried to sleep in the van. All 6 of us. Needless to say, none of us could sleep. We walked around a bit and waited for our next exchange. This was the best one yet. When our 2nd van came in our team all got to ride on a roller coaster as part of the race! It was 12:45 am, pitch black out, and foggy. I loved it. I loved it so much, I rode on it twice and held my hands up the whole time! After the roller coaster it was our vans final legs of running. It was now about 1:00 am. We were running on back country roads now in north Idaho. Now those of you not from around here, north Idaho is notorious for having a large hate ground compound called the Aryan Nations. Being a black woman, I cant' tell you how thrilled I was to be running in the middle of the night in this area! Our team decided though to send a rider alongside each of our runners for safety. SO when it was my turn to run at 3:30 am, I had a 6'4 tall white blond male as my rider. He's their kind of people so I felt a little better. My last leg was 5.5 miles. After that, I was supposed to ride 7.1 miles right after but I had a little mix up. When I was done running I had to hop on the bike and get my biking gear situated. Our runner didn't want to wait and he just took off. By the time I got ready, I had to pedal really fast. Finally I got to what I thought was my guy. I was talking to him, I thought he was answering me, it was all fine. Or so I thought. I rode at least a mile behind him when I came up on my van. I asked them what they were doing. They said they were pulling me off the bike, that our runner was way ahead of me and he was fine. I was confused. I told them that's not right I was with our runner the whole time. They said I was with a runner, but not OUR runner. I was a little delusional at 4:15 am I guess! After that leg I was out. I crashed out in the van, skipped breakfast to sleep even longer int he van. We got to our destination city where all of my team finally got to lay on some grass to get a few hours of sleep. They were giving mini massages 15 minutes for $15. Totally worth it! I was so sore!!! At one point, my reflex was almost to punch the guy because he hit a sore spot. But I did not. Then I set out to find COFFEE! I hadn't had any in 2 days!! I was dying. Our team ended up finishing in 29 hours. I slept a little bit more on the ride home. I probably got 3 hours total. When I got home I was done, I could hardly walk, hardly eat, and was so tired. It was a great experience, but boy did I underestimate it!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Regrets, I've Had A Few

My hubs and I just had a four day mini vacation away together for our 13th anniversary. It was beautiful and fun but I had a revelation I think. Here I have been on this weight loss journey pretty much for 4 1/2 years (with a pregnancy in there). You would think after all this time I would have truly from my core changed my habits. Eating healthy should come naturally by now don't you think? But alas it has not. The 4 days we were away I was out of control. I ate things I haven't eaten in years. Plus, we went around to about 10 different wineries which did not help either.

When I drink, I let go of everything I know to be good for me. I call myself the "Cookie Monster." Remember how he eats by just shoving cookies into his face. That's how I get when I drink. So this weekend away from my kids the hubs and i were drinking it up. That led to me eating french fries on two different days. I have had fries at a restaurant in years. Then I had a burger. For some reason after a day of drinking wine, my body wanted MEAT. Now I will say, I swear on my life, it was the BEST burger I've ever had in my entire life. It probably had about 1,000 calories though. It has orgonzola cheese (which I had never heard of), some kind of chutney, and bacon on ciabatta bread. I could only eat 1/2 of it at one time, but I saved the rest because it was too good to let go. Let's see what else did I put in my body, a burrito, ice cream, 2 mini desserts (2 because they were in shot glasses so I thought why not but turns out I could only finish 1), a breakfast sandwich from Starbucks, and lots and lots of alcohol!

I think I've fooled myself that I've been getting healthy and not being on a diet. I obviously still have my fat girl mentality. I obvious have been dieting this whole time. Perhaps this is why my weight has crept up 15 pounds. Perhaps this is why I gained 3 1/2 lbs. in 4 days. Perhaps I need to make more changes than I thought I did. I used the excuses, "I'm on vacation," and, "It's my anniversary it's OK." Well maybe for one treat or one meal. Not to indulge in whatever I see for 4 days. That's not OK and I need to be able to choose wisely when I'ts food I have not prepared. I STILL have this issue that I need to work on.

While the hubs and I were away at the lake, we rented a jet ski. I have never been on a jet ski and it was really fun. We rented it for 1/2 a day though and boy did my tush and hips get sore! In fact, my right tush cheek still hurts. It hurt so bad that I could run for more than 5 minutes yesterday without winching. I had to take a ton of Tylenol and stretching before I could finish my 8 miles! It was also talking to me this morning, but not as much as yesterday.

I have a relay race that I volunteered for this weekend. I volunteered to do it without thinking it all the way through. It's a 12 person relay team to run 185 miles in 36 legs. Each leg is from 3-7 miles long. We all take 3 different legs. It starts at 7 am on a Friday. I'm used to racing on Saturdays or Sundays so I had no idea I'd have to find daycare for my boys. Also, I guess I didn't think about that I could be running at ANY time of the day or night. I could have to run at 3 o'clock in the morning. I could have to run when it's 100 degrees! I could have to ride my bike next to someone running in the middle of the night. I only know the captain of my team and I haven't seen her since high school. We ride in two different vans and I'm not even in her van. So I'm going to be in a van off and on for up to 35 hours with total stranger being all stinky and sweaty in front of them.Everyone says, "Oh you'll have so much fun." I even thought it would be fun when I first heard about it. But then when reality set in, it doesn't sound fun at all. I need my sleep! I need to shower! Holy crap this is going to suck! Has anyone out there done one of these races? Any words of wisdom for me? Help!!! I will leave you with a few pics from my anniversary trip.

Workouts-
Sunday- Easy 3.23 miles in 28 minutes
Tuesday- 8 miles, 1 mile warm up, alternating every 1/2 mile running on an incline for hill work, 1 mile cool down
Wednesday- Easy 4 miles in 38:06 + Level 2 Jillian Michaels 30 day Shred

The resort:

My hubs saying my nose got sunburned:

The jet ski:


First dinner out dress


On the beach

At Tunnel Hill Winery
At Tsillan Winery where I tasted the best Reisling I've ever had

Last nights dinner dress:

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

When Will I Learn???

For those of you who may have stumbled upon my blog recently may not be aware that I have issues. I am fully aware of my issues and know that I am a work in progress. You would think someone of my age and semi intelligence that I would learn from myself. I do but on a very slow curve. With that said, I am an idiot.

Last night I was reading another runners blog. In it, she linked to 101 tips for runners. Being a novice getting ready for a marathon I thought I better read this. Many of its suggestions were to make sure to get adequate rest. As I was reading this it was 11 o'clock PM and I was tired. Did I listen to my body and go to bed? NOPE. I kept reading that link and then another and then another and then checked my Facebook. I ended up staying up after midnight. AND since it had been so long since I ate a decent meal I was then hungry and was going threw my cupboards to find something to tide me over. Here I am trying to not overeat, watch what I eat, and I go into an eating frenzy. On top of that, I KNOW I need adequate sleep for weight loss. But have I been getting enough sleep?? NO! Is there any logical reason?? NO! Tonight, I vow to be in my bed by 10:30 PM!

Having a horrible night sleep did not help my running today. Today is a quality running day that I was excited for. I decided to do Fartlek's (face paced intervals between 30 sec. to 4 min. with recovery time). I started with a mile warm up. I did it in 10:47. That should have clued me in that it was not going to be a good running day. My mind was tired. It made my legs tired. It made me dread the thought of 8 miles on my treadmill. My boys interrupted me several times. I made my own excuses to jump off the machine to do something. I finally finished but it wasn't 8 miles straight so I feel basically like I sucked again! I ran my speeds adding 30 seconds each time and recovered for 2 minutes in between. I am hoping if I get a good nights sleep I will be better tomorrow. On a positive note, my new shoes seem to be helped my legs a LOT! I still feel tender in my Achilles tendon, but the knees feel better. We'll see when I run on the street how the legs feel.

Workout-
Tuesday- 1 mile warm up, 6 miles doing Fartlek speedwork, 1 mile cool down 73 min. total

Monday, August 3, 2009

Did I Miss Something?

I have been paying for a gym membership for 5 years. Every summer, I try to go to the gym. The summer the twins were 1 1/2 they did pretty well since we had a routine. Eat breakfast while watching big brother during swim lessons. Then get big brother, clean up our mess, and go to the playroom. We did this Monday through Friday so they got used to it. Last summer they would cry and cry and they'd come ask me politely to please get my screaming kids out of there! OR when they were having fun they would throw toys, not out of anger they like to throw things is all. So I tried that for 2 weeks and never go to workout so I gave up working out at the gym and started at home. This week, my oldest son has soccer camp from 9-12 and the gym is right between his camp and our house. So I decided to try it AGAIN.

They knew who we were right when we walked in which worried me. They were asking me what it was that they used to get kicked out for. One gal actually remembered their crying. Great. I said yes either crying or throwing or diapers or whatever. Well the boys are potty trained and have actually asked to go in there when we've been at the gym just to swim. I figured all of this was a good sign so I decided to try it again. I'm actually not sure what their problem was because they go to a daycare during the school year. It's not like they're new to daycare. But I guess different routine, different people, created different reactions than normal.

Anywhoo, I went to the gym today and was able to do 40 minutes on the Stair Master and 30 minutes on the weight machines. Now here's what I noticed during my workout; I know it's been awhile since I worked out in a gym BUT are weight machines now only for older folks or teens??? Because as I was doing my circuit, that's all I saw. Me and senior citizens, not that's there anything wrong with them, and one teen. Do younger ladies now workout in the free weight room? I gotta tell you, I'm scared to go in the free weight room. One reason is I don't really know what to do in there. Another is there are men in there making all kinds of noises and moans and groans that freaks me out. A third is it's a room full of mirrors. I'm not into staring at myself while lifting weights. Is it me? Am I the last woman under 60 that's not using this room? Granted, normally I see the older folk using these techno key machines that remember their settings for them. I noticed that all of those machines have been removed and they are waiting for newer equipment. Maybe it was the time of day. I don't know but I felt weird being 36 surrounded by people in their 60's and 70's only. The people that looked close to my age were IN THE FREE WEIGHT ROOM. Ack! I know people get scared and intimidated to step into a gym period. I get that because that's how I feel going into the free weight room.

So question of the day is, are weight machines for older folks? Should I get over my free weight room fears? Could it be a fluke thing?

Major props to my 3 1/2 year old twins who made it an hour and a half in the playroom without getting kicked out!!

Workout-
Monday- 5 min. warm up, 30 min. on level 13 aerobic endurance, 5 min. cool down climbing and lifting with 5 lb. weights doing: 3 sets of each hammer curls, bicep curls, flys, and shoulder presses.
Then 2 sets of legs with 15 reps each and 2 sets arms and back 12 reps

Sunday, August 2, 2009

My achy breaky body

My WHOLE body ached yesterday after my long run. My Achilles tendon, calves, quads, and knees. I was limping around the house. My husband was concerned that I won't be able make it to my marathon. I think I just need new shoes so I went and bought some. Normally I just go to my running store, they have my shoe and size on their computer, and I just get a new pair. Today, they were out. OUT! And my shoes won't be in until Friday. After how I was feeling, Friday seemed way to long to wait for new shoes. I tried on 7 pairs of shoes. I finally decided on a pair of Adidas Supernova Sequences size 11! Please, please, please let this be the reason I hurt. I am determined to do this marathon.

Another problem I had after my run yesterday was umm...how do I say this politely...runners tummy. For some reason, my belly doesn't like any runs over 10 miles. I know to not eat what I ate yesterday, but I think I am going to have to start taking Imodium before my long runs from now on. I just don't want to feel like crap after my long runs. Do any of you other runners get this way? I can't imagine you do because why would you continue to do that to yourselves?

It's the end of my 6th week and next week I'm going to be messed up. My hubs and I are going out of town for our anniversary, so I need to change my long run from Saturday to Friday. Friday is normally a rest day, so now I need to maybe make my rest day after my long run? I know it feels good to run the day after a long run to kind of loosen up the muscles, but I don't think my hubs will find it very romantic to ditch him for over 2 hours on our special weekend away. I will be taking my running shoes and Garmin with me though to get a 4 miler in at least. Any advice or suggestions are always welcomed!

Workout-
Sunday- Easy 4 miler in 38 min. avg. pace 9:30

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Well That Sucked

I went out at 9:30 to start my long run. That apparently was too late to start running today. It's 89 degrees with 29% humidity. I tried a new food to eat before the run and I think it made things worse. It was PowerBar bites. Around mile 4 threw up a little in my mouth. By mile 6 my calves started to kill! I had to stop to stretch them out several times. By mile 8 I was already out of all my Nuun. I found a water fountain to fill my bottles up with something, but it was hot water. My whole body feels like it's seizing up right now. I literally wiped my body down with a towel like after a shower and I'm still wet and sweaty! Ack! Last weekend, great long run. This weekend, I sucked! According to the McMillian Running calculator, I ran within my long run speed. But I feel like I'm cheating because I turn my Garmin off when I stop to walk. If I kept it going, my pace would be a lot slower. Any other runners pause their Garmins when they take a walk break?

By the way, I read Jen's blog today and immediately started crying. It took my breathe away. It is one of the saddest stories I've heard. I immediately went up stairs and hugged and kissed my mom and kids. It was on my mind a lot of my run which could have also been a reason I had a hard time today. Please keep Jen and her family in your thoughts. Here's a beautiful pic of my mom (r), my late grandma (l) with one of my sons when he was 4, just to honor her:
Workout-
Saturday- 12 mile long run in 1:55:47 avg. pace 9:39 :(

Friday, July 31, 2009

Rest Day

Let me tell you, I work out at 6 times a week. On my rest day, I do just that. I don't mean I lay around the house and eat Bon Bon's all day, but I don't work out. That's because I think my body needs a rest and my long run is tomorrow and I want to conserve my energy. Even though I run 5 times a week, I am still not one of these running addicts. I don't wake up and say, "Woohoo I want to run today!" No. I run because I know it's good for me. I run because I can. I run because it's a quick way to burn calories. I don't LOVE running. I love how I feel when I'm done. I love feeling strong and accomplished when I'm finished. But during my run I wonder, "When is it going to be over?"

I think it's good that I sign up for races. It keeps me motivated and on track. I have a training schedule that I stick to. When I'm not training for something, I slack. I sleep. I basically turn into a sloth. I'll run here and there but not consistently. I need the structure. I need to have a plan of attack. I like that when I wake up, I just look at my running calendar and know what I need to get done for day. If it's left up to me, I'd rather read blogs all day, or play with my kids, or catch up on my TV shows.

Perhaps this is why I got up to the weight I did. I think I'm lazy by nature. I need to force myself to make good choices for myself still everyday. I would think after 3 years of being on weight watchers I would get it. It would just come naturally and I'd be able to automatically make good choices. Unfortunately I still don't. Everyday I have to have talks with myself, plan my food as best I can, and have a workout schedule. For me, I guess I need the structure and a plan. Otherwise it all goes to hell for me. Again don't get me wrong, I am now a very active person. Even after dinner I go outside with my boys and shoot hoops. I never used to be like that.

I also really love the competition feeling I get with racing. It keeps me motivated to get out of this chair and run. But I if I don't get a run in, I don't freak out. I don't go into withdrawals. I kind of don't even miss it. Well I take that back, if it's a run I need to do for my training, normally I figure out a way to get it done. But if it's just a normal day and I don't run, oh well. Isn't that weird? I always tell people to find an activity you like and then you'll be more inclined to do it. I love the races and I love the after affects that I get after the run, I just wish I loved the actual run more. Some days I do. I really loved running in the snow as crazy as that seems. Some days it just feels good and I want to keep going especially on an outside run when the weather is just right and my body cooperates with me. Many times running is just hard though. My knees and hips will ache. I will get either a tummy ache or a shooting pain near my collar bone that I think is gas?? Sometimes my legs feel heavy. But it is especially on those days that I am the most proud of myself for pushing through it and finishing it. I have never just stopped and called someone to pick me up in the middle of a run. I finish one way or another and that makes me feel strong and proud. I like those feelings. All of which is what drives me to get out of bed (when I'd rather be sleeping), put on my running gear (when I'd rather be eating breakfast), and get to my running (when I'd rather be watching TV, drinking my coffee, or again going back to sleep :)).

But today, on my rest day I plan on doing the laundry, go up and down 3 flights of stairs at least 30 times, doing the dishes, sweeping and mopping the floors, play hide and seek with my boys, fix meals, clean up after crazy children, dust, vacuum....you know, a typical rest day for a mom!
Workouts-
Wednesday- Easy 4 mile run in 38:25 avg. pace 9:37 + 20 min. level 2 Jillian Michael's 20 Day Shred
Thursday- Tempo run 6 miles (1 mile warm up, 4 miles tempo, 1 mile cool down) 52:50 avg. pace 8:40
Friday- House work and playing with the boys since int's a rest day

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Smell Aversions

One of the downers about running outside are the smells. I don't like to smell anything when I run. Maybe I'm weird but it really bothers me. I can't even wear my own perfume when I run. It drives me crazy. On my easy run on Sunday, I was noticing a lot of smells and it makes me gag a little bit. Here a few of the smells that I smelled on my run:
  • wet grass from the rain

  • grass clippings

  • weird evergreen/poky bushes
  • car gas and exhaust

  • some food from a truck stop diner

  • then some food from a Sikh temple- strongest smell of the day

  • construction equipment

  • animal poo
I have seen some brave people on their blogs post pics of their sweaty selves after exercising. So I am too going to be brave and share with you how I look after my runs. Believe me, I know I get smelly myself while I run. I don't even like to smell that!

My sweaty belly making my shirt all wet:

My arm sweat:
My chest sweat:
Workouts:
Sunday- easy 3 miles in 26:15
Monday- Jillian's No More Trouble Zones DVD
Tuesday- Yasso 800's I did 7 800's and 1 400 for 7 miles in 63:55

Saturday, July 25, 2009

I'm Back Baby!!!

I finally listened to myself and had a VERY successful long run. I was out the door by 8:15 strapped with my new, cheap yet effective Ironman running belt. On it was two water bottles full of Lemon Lime Nuun, my cell phone, tissues, jelly beans and a packet of vanilla PowerGel. I only stopped once this time and that was because I'm not used to these new water bottles and I pulled the top off and was spilling it all over myself. Even as I got to 5.5 miles, I pulled my Gel out of my little fanny pack and ate it while I chased it with my Nuun. It was about 70 degrees and the route I went had a lot of shade. Last Saturday, I ran at a 9:21 pace. Today, I ran at a 8:55 pace which is great considering I ran 2 extra miles. The running when its not 90 degrees helped plus I think the Nuun helped also. It feels great to be able to run again without feeling like I'm going to die, cramp up, or throw up! Now off to the lake with friends!

Workouts-
Saturday- 11 mile long run in 1:38:12

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Fresh Air Fund

I recently received an email from a representative of the Fresh Air Fund. It is an organization that gives inner city children a summer vacation to a host families house in the north east area. Right now they are getting a half marathon fund raiser ready in New York City. They are in need of host family though that live in 13 states in the north east area. The host family would take in an inner city child for a vacation. The race is August 16th. If you are able to run it or be a host family it sounds like a great cause! Here is part of what her email said:

Last summer's NYC Half-Marathon was a huge success and the Fresh Air Fund-Racers raised more than $125,000. We are also still in need of Friendly Town hosts for next month. Host families open their hearts and home to a NYC child who would not otherwise have the opportunity to escape the hot, crowded city streets.

As much as I would love an excuse to go to NY I am unable to go, but it sounds like a great race to help kids!

Workouts-
Tuesday- Hill work 6 miles in 1:01:34
Wednesday- Easy 4 miler in 37:33
Thursday- Tempo run 6 miles in 52:54
Friday- rest day so going to play at the water park with my boys!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Weekend Wrapup

Friday- Since I've been doing this training, it seems most of my mornings are spent trying to workout while also getting things constantly for my boys. Perhaps if I woke up before them, we'd still have a lot of the day. But instead, since I'm on vacation, I lay my lazy ass in my bed until the two little turkeys come to wake me for breakfast. So on Fridays, since it is my rest day, I try to make it a super fun day for the boys. Last Friday, we went to an awesome park we have in my city called Riverfront Park. It's beautiful. It has over 100 acres and a river that runs through the middle of it. It has a carousel, ducks and geese in the river, a giant red wagon replica that's actually a slide, a large train that tours you around the park, a gondola ride over the river, an IMAX theatre, and many MANY amusement style rides for the kids. We were there for about 6 hours in over 90 degree heat! The kids had a blast though. We went with my best friend and her boys so 5 boys running wild all together.

Saturday- I have been having the hardest time on my long runs. It has to be the time of day and heat factor because I'm never as miserable running as I have been the last 3 Saturdays with my long runs. As I said before if I were a smart person, I would run before it got hot outside. Well this Saturday was a scorcher. It was already 70 degrees at 7:00 in the morning. What did I do? I waited around, talked to my mom, snuggled with my boys, to finally get all my gear on for my run at almost 10:00! Right now I only run with a small handheld water bottle. A question to you fellow runners, do you run with a belt or a CamelBak? I think I would like the belt just because I can stash my Gels or jellybeans inside of it where a CamelBak would either not have that option or just make it trickier to get to my stuff. Do you wear anything? When it was late winter/early spring, I didn't need to take anything on my long runs. But with it being so hot, I have to at least have some water. When I started running on Saturday, my first mile was just around my neighborhood and I felt fine. I think a lot of the problem I have with running is mental. I think when I'm in my neighborhood I don't feel like I've gone far so I'm fine. The minute I start the journey away from the house, suddenly I have issues. I ran my first mile and ran back to my house. I crushed more ice into my little watter bottle and took a puff of my inhaler because I felt like I was having a hard time breathing. Then I headed back outside. I was OK for the next couple of miles but felt like I had a mild pain or something near my diaphragm. It was annoying me! Around the 4 mile mark I found a giant tree and I took a minute under it to enjoy the shade and munch on some of my jelly beans. I'm trying them out to see how I like them. They are delicious but the taste stays stuck in my mouth for a long time. They're Cold Stone ice cream flavored Jelly Bellys. I guess Gel kind of does that too. I drank some water and was back off. I ran up and down a small hill and immediately my left hip and knee were hurting. Not sure why. So started running on the other side of the road to see if that would help but it didn't. Around 4.5 miles I had to stop again this time for an intersection. I noticed that I was REALLY wet and sweaty. Normally I sweat but this was on another level. I wondered if it was because I put on both sunblock AND bug spray before going outside. I had a nasty little critter bite me last week and I didn't want to have a repeat. As I started heading toward my one big hill for the day I was quickly denied. The road was all ripped up due to construction so I changed directions to find another hill. I live in a fairly flat area, so I try to find as many little hills as I can during my run. As I was starting on mile 6 my right side was hurting bad. The road has a slight incline and I wondered if that was making it worse. Finally around 6.7 of my run I went down a very large hill. It helped to make up some time since I was running so slow! I stopped again to catch my breath, have a few more jelly beans and water, to then turn around and run back up that hill. I kept going this time until I was stopped again by intersections. Going the opposite direction on that road, my legs felt a little better. Maybe again it was just all mental because by now I only had 1.7 more miles to go. When I got 8.5 miles into my run something felt wrong. I knew I was thirsty but I was soaking wet. My shirt and shorts just felt drenched. It was probably upper 80's if not in the 90's by this point with not a breeze in the air. But for some reason, I started feeling cold and shivery. I knew this could not be good. There was no reason in this heat, no wind, no shade, that I should suddenly be cold. So I just kept running until I got to my 9 miles, and I ran just a little more until I got to my street where I walked the rest of the way home. My girlfriend and her husband were having a yard sale. I felt bad for running right past them without talking to them, but I was wearing a white running tank top. And I was wet. So...you know....I was probably looking like a girl in a wet t-shit contest and didn't feel it was appropriate to talk to anyone with areolas showing! When I got home, I had to wipe myself down with a towel. I drank about 24 oz. of water right away. I'm thinking it was early signs of dehydration? Not good whatever it was. I knew I need to have more than a 6 oz. handheld water bottle next Saturday. I bought some Nuun which needs to be mixed with 16 oz. of water, so I know I need to invest in something. Any suggestions?

Sunday- Oh lazy laziness. My mom had my boys so I slept until 11:00! What am I a teenager again? Holy smokes! Anyway, I woke up and knew I was NOT going to run outside that late again. I hopped on my treadmill and felt great. It wasn't hard, I was sweaty but not to the point of being obscene like the day before, and my knee and hip felt fine. Is it mental? Could it be that run the street running hurts me? It did help that my treadmill is the basement of my nice air conditioned home. Again, I think it just might be the heat. Please feel free to yell or give any comments or suggestion about what I need to fix. And I already know I probably shouldn't been running when it's so hot. I see people do it all the time though, why am I different? Just a weirdy I guess. :)

Workouts-
Friday- rest
Saturday- 9 mile long run in 1:24:04 blah!!!
Sunday- easy 3 mile in 27:18 minutes
Monday- Jillian's No More Trouble Zones DVD + 25 minutes Wii Active

Thursday, July 16, 2009

What I've learned from my blogging friends

I started this blog basically as a place to complain and let my frustrations out since my husband is over hearing about it. But it's now transformed me and it is such a place for humbling, inspiration, and education. I have learned so much from you fellow bloggers. I wish I could give credit where credit is due, but I just have picked up bits and pieces. Here are just a few of the many things I have learned:


Running blogs:
  • I have learned about researching information on Runner's World. It is such a great place to learn about pace, fueling, and training. Lately, they are linked now with iyoga to help runners with their stretching.
  • There is a tool called the McMillian Running Calculator . This will tell you paces to run based of type of run and distance. I have learned that I was running too slowly for my easy runs. Hey, it' called easy right? Well yes but it's an easy RUN and I was doing easy JOGS. So I stepped up my easy run yesterday and am glad I found this site early in my training.
  • That Gel/GU with caffeine equals tummy churning!
  • That I am not the only runner who has food and running issues.
  • Yoga can be a great exercise to add to my training.
  • I probably need to invest in some mace since I run mostly alone and dogs or weirdies can get me. Also I need to invest either in a running belt or a CamelBak. Would love to hear from runners what they like to use for marathons.
  • There is a stick you can buy to rub on sore muscles after running. I LOVE my marathon stick!
  • Oh and BodyGlide! This is great to rub on the skin where you may have chaffing!

Weight loss/Fitness Blogs:

  • To be present in your life.
  • Stop the negative self talk. Appreciate what you have and what you're achieved.
  • A perfect meal has a balance of healthy fats, carbs, and protein. I am really paying attention to my protein now and am really trying to view my plate like a pie graph: 1/4 protein, 1/4 starch, and 1/2 veggies and fruit. Last night my place was more in 1/3's : 1/3 chicken, 1/3 green beans, and a 1/3 broccoli.
  • That clean eating is ultimately the best for your body. Eating as little processed foods the better.
  • As a person diagnosed with ABS, I cannot eat the following things that I owe a huge thanks to my blogger friends for helping me figure this out: artificial sugars including aspartame, Splenda, etc.; chicory root/inulin which are in a ton of foods I love including ClifBars, Luna Bars, any Kashi cereals or Fiber One products; and most of Weight Watchers own products including their yogurt.
  • That I very much need to step up my weight training and not just my cardio.
  • That I have support and am not alone. I have read peoples blogs who at one time or another I've shared the same feelings of frustration, joy, irritation, pride, etc.

So thank you bloggers for giving me such a wealth of information. I learn something new every day. I appreciate all of you who read this blog. I am sure as soon as I post this blog that I will remember more things to add! Last, thank you for you followers. I have been told I am a source of inspiration which makes me feel good. It also makes me get mad at myself for not always being positive in my outlook. But I write what I truly feel so thanks to you who read my ramblings!

Workouts:

Tuesday- Easy run 4 miles in 37:44 + 20 minutes Level 2 30 Day Shred

Wednesday- Tempo run 5 miles in 42:27

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sweaty Sweatness

I have been doing Jillian Michaels DVD's for over a month now about 2 times a week. They are not getting any easier. Sometimes when I'm in the middle of doing them, I swear if I saw her I'd punch her in the face. She is hardcore but that's why I like it and like her and I stick with it. Yesterday was my cross training day so I did my longer Jillian DVD again. After that and hiking on Sunday my tush is burning! I'm starting to wonder if there will ever be a day that I am not sore.

My knees and hips are hurting. Normally I would think I need new shoes, but looking at my mileage for the year and knowing I just bought these in April, it doesn't seem like I should buy new tennies yet. I keep wondering if it's the hiking shoes I wear. Sometimes we run downhill and I wonder if they aren't supportive enough. Then again, when I look at the miles I've racked this year it seems not accurate either. I've trained for a 10K, 1/2 marathon, and now a marathon so it just seems like maybe I missed logging some runs.

Today I did Yasso 800 intervals. Holy moly does interval running make me sweat! I mean dripping off my face sweat!!! I like these more than tempo runs just because you get a break every half mile. You run at a fast pace for 800m which equals a half mile and then recover at a slower pace for 400m. I did 6 800 sprints today. I'm still wet and I stopped running a half hour ago! I need a shower I stink!

Workouts:
Monday- Jillian Michaels No More Trouble Zones DVD 55 min.
Tuesday- 6 miles Yasso 800's in 55:19

Monday, July 13, 2009

Weekend Update

This weekend felt great. For my long run on Saturday, it wasn't easy, but it felt MUCH better than last weekend. First, my knees have been hurting this week. I'm wondering if it was due to running down hill with my hiking shoes on rather than my tennies? I had to eat a little bit of food so I could take some Ibuprofen. After waiting awhile for it to kick in, it was already 9:50. This was a problem because I knew I needed over an hour to run 8 miles but I needed to get to Weight Watchers to weigh in before 11:00. There was no way I was going to make it if I ran all 8 at once. So I headed out the door in hopes to get at least 7 miles in and I'd finish the last mile once I got back. I'm sure this is not ideal for building up my stamina but it's what I had to do. I ran 7 miles in 1:03 which sounds good, but I had only 5 minutes to get to my WW meeting and it takes me 15 minutes to drive there. I was going back in forth in my mind if I should just skip it and run all my 8 miles at once and then weigh in on Monday. I was stressing because when you become a Lifetime member of Weight Watchers, you must weigh in at least once a month for it to still be free. I usually weigh in the first weekend of the month. Since that was on the 4th and the center was closed, it was getting later and later in the month and I really don't want to have to pay a weekly fee again. Knowing my Saturday leader though, she usually runs long on her meetings. So I went ahead and hopped in my car in hopes to be able to weigh in and buy some smoothie packets.

As I was pulling into the parking lot, I could see the crowd leaving. Yes I made it on time! First I have to tell you, my meeting is in a little strip mall and the first business in it is a Baskin and Robbins. I can't tell you how evil it is to pull into Weight Watchers and have to see giant posters of Reeses sundaes or coffee shakes! Are you kidding me? Can't it be a gym or Whole Foods or something??? Anyway, I got in to weigh in quickly. To my dismay, apparently they were having a sale on their smoothies so they were out! Ugh. I asked the receptionist, who is a marathon runner herself, what my deal was. I haven't been able to drop out of the 130's for a month and it's driving me crazy. People always try to say, "Oh you're gaining muscle since you're lifting weights and running more." Um no because it's not muscle that's hanging over my pants when I put them on. The positive side is that when I dropped all my weight I of course had to find something to not be happy with...I have issues remember! So besides the droopy skin on my belly it was my tush. It was now mostly flat except for a small little extra butt underneath. I called it my double butt. Well, I now just have one butt and when I flex it it pops out like Jennifer Lopez POW! But, I struggle to it into my pants. A girlfriend I work with has no sympathy. She says, "Oh I feel really bad that your size 2's are too small now." Well I'm beyond my size 2's. I'm lucky if I can squeeze into my size 4's of Old Navy which I honestly equate to size 6's. Again, did I ever in my entire life think I could even wear these sizes? NO! The point is, those clothes fit me 6 months to a year ago and now they don't. It doesn't matter the size, it's the principal that my ass and back fat are preventing me from wearing my clothes!!! Anywhoo, she told me to bring in my journal next week because she was curious if I was getting enough protein. That's the second thing people say to me when I bitch about my back fat. Since WW was out of their smoothies, which are high in protein by the way, I headed to another store that was supposed to carry Oikos Greek yogurt. I have head about this yogurt for months on people blogs, but I never saw it stores around here. To my surprise several weeks ago, I found a little 4 pack at WalMart of all places! I was excited and started using it in my smoothies. Of course when I went back for more, I couldn't find it. Not even a label of where it should be. It's as if it never existed. I tries 3 other grocery stores and still couldn't find it. So I went online to see where it was sold. I found out it's sold at all the Safeway's around here. I found that funny since I already tried a Safeway and never found it. So when driving home from WW, I tried another Safeway. I was so happy to have found plain, honey, and vanilla Oikos yogurt. I bought 7 containers and ate one right there in the store. I tried the honey and it was really yummy. This yogurt is not like regular yogurt. It has 120 calories, zero fat, and 15 grams of protein for the flavored and 80 calories for the plain!!! It is thick and yummy and I feel very full when I combine it with fruit or mix it in with my smoothies. So I will bring in my tracker to her, even though it's super intimidating to show someone your journal. It's like showing someone a peek into my soul or something. But I'm willing to find out how I can tweak my diet.
Sundays are turning into hike days around here. First I started with an easy 3 mile recovery run. My hubs is trying to run too. He has a hard time and finds it is all mental for him. He's been running 3 miles lately so I keep trying to get him to run with me. He never wants to because he says I'm too fast. Finally I convinced him since it's supposed to be an easy run for me anyway. Then he admitted right before we were heading out that he doesn't exactly run 3 miles straight...that he stops for about 10 seconds and started again. Oh well I finally had him willing to try so we went out. It definitely was an easy pace for me. We did 3 miles in 33 minutes. My hubs says it was a nice pace for him but he did stop like 3 times. During that time, I would turn around and run the opposite way and then run back up to him. I wanted him to not feel emasculated by me so running behind him rather than out in front would make him feel better! He still was mad though, he looked at me and said that I didn't even look like I broke a sweat! I did a little, but again it was an easy recovery run. Later, we went on a hike again in a new area. Not as pretty as the one last weekend but was nice. It's amazing how hard hiking can be and how long we're out there but yet only cover a few miles! Last, when we got home we took the kids swimming. Let me tell you, I got another workout. Not from swimming, but from carrying my 37 pound 3 year old up and down the stairs to go down the water slide about 15 times! My legs were talking that's for sure. Here's some hike pics for you to enjoy:









Workouts:
Friday- rest day
Saturday- 8 mile long run in 1:11
Sunday- easy 3 mile run in 33 min. + 3.41 hike in the hills

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Tummy Tuck

Many times after I mention my tummy tuck, I get comments asking about it. Forever ago I did a post about it here, but I will talk about it more now.

In October 2007, I got to my lowest weight of 117. I honestly can never remember weighing this weight EVER. In high school I was between 140 and 160. In jr. high I think I was 125. I just seem to have jumped over the teens. I should have felt proud, elated, and extremely happy about my accomplishment. I was happy for about 5 minutes. The problem was I still saw myself as fat. My undergarment of choice was tummy-sucking-in-underwear that hit me right under my bra. Granny panties! I wore these daily because I had loose flabby skin that literally used to sway in the breeze. I could feel it slap against itself when I ran up stairs. It was pretty attractive! Even though I was at this weight, I didn't want to wear tight clothes, swimsuits, or be seen naked. I felt disgusting! I would cry and fuss and stare at it all the time. I wasn't trying to be vain, it just made me feel like I needed to be smaller. My husband was worried about me. He felt like I was going to the "bad place" in my mind (anorexia). He very much encouraged me to see a doctor.

When I mentioned to my coworkers that I was considering it, they instantly judged me and looked down their noses at me. I was really good at hiding the loose skin, so they all thought I was just being ridiculous. I would get upset and frustrated. It made me not want to eat in the staff room with my coworkers. It made me cry constantly. Finally I started getting so irritated with people that I would show them. I would have to pull it all out of my undies and let it fly until they believed me. Their reactions were usually things like, "Oh," or "My old skin looks like that," or "So when are you going to get that fixed?" I know it was bad!

I finally paid for a consultation to a plastic surgeon. When she looked at me, she said in the 13+ years she's been doing plastic surgery that I probably had the most above the belly button skin of anyone she'd even seen. The skin above my belly button used to completely hide it. I would get infections in there since it never got any fresh air! In fact, right before my surgery it started getting infected again and then my surgery would have had to be rescheduled. I finally decided to go ahead and do it. I made the surgery appointment and coordinated it with my moms and hubs vacations so I had help. Once you get surgery, there's no heavy lifting for 6 weeks! This would be hard with two 2 year olds running around!

The day I had my surgery, my father in law was in the same hospital getting a procedure done. It made it handy for hubs to visit both of us, but kind of confusing for the nursing staff since my father in law and I both have similar first names...Michelle and Michael and of course the same last name. I don't really remember much except that when I woke up and started to walk around, you're supposed to walk hunched over for the first 2 weeks. I kept walking upright and my hubs would tell me to hunch over. For some reason I stayed upright and just squatted with my knees. He'd laugh at me and then lean me over to show me what he meant. The first few days I was in pain, but I've had two previous c-sections so it wasn't too bad. You have to sleep upright after surgery, so we made me a bed in an old lazy boy we got from the hubs' grandma. The chair was not the most comfortable, so the most pain I felt was in my back.

Now there are things I NEVER knew people went through during this type of surgery. The sleeping upright was one. Another is they insert drainage tubes in you to drain the fluid. The ends of the tubes collect the fluid. They look like clear hand grenades. They are MUCH bigger than I though. You can't hide or conceal them much because they are literally the size of a grenade. You have to drain and measure the crap that comes out daily! I had to right down the amounts because it's not until you basically stop draining that they'll remove these things. And they are a pain. Try showering when you have plastic tubes with giant hand grenades attached to them coming our of your body. We had to wrap them around my neck so my hands could be free to clean myself! Also, you have to wear a stomach wrap and it needs to be TIGHT. The one plus to this was I could attach my stupid tubes to it so they weren't being dragged around. I had to wear this things for the full 6 weeks. The tubes came out after about a week and a half. Also, under the tummy wrap I wore and electrode my doctor gave me that was supposed to help with muscle spasms. It must have worked because honestly, I was not in as much pain as I thought I would be. I made sure I was in really fit condition before my surgery to help. My hubs just thinks I'm super tough. I honestly think it was good drugs and the electrode that helped
.
The first few days after surgery I was basically in and out of sleep most of the time. My hubs was with me the first full week after surgery. The week after that was my mom, the next week his mom, then my mom again, and finally his mom one more time. It was really nice to have so much help not necessarily for me, but my kids needed to be taken care of. I also had a lot of appointments to go to that I couldn't drive myself.
If you are considering doing a tummy tuck, here are things to keep in mind:

  • Make sure you get a doctor that has very good references and you can see their work FIRST.
  • I would save money because unless you have loose skin that hangs past your pelvis, insurance will not cover the costs. Even if your skin does hang past, I have heard insurance only pays a little bit. This surgery can be $9 to $10K. There are medical loans you can get for a pretty low interest rate, but we saved and just paid for all of it at once. With my doc, you got a discount for paying cash.
  • Make sure you have HELP! At least one other adult the first few weeks.
  • Make sure you are ready to give up 6 weeks of your life! You have to sit and rest! The more you move, the worse it is for your pain and healing. It had a really hard time with keeping my butt in a chair for so long. It sounds nice to lay around, be lazy, watch TV or read books, but it got old really quick.
  • Make sure it's worth it to your spirit and well being.
  • Preplan and freeze meals for yourself.
  • Be as physically fit as possible. It also helps your recovery.
  • Understand that it will not be perfect. My tummy is not perfect. I've had 2 other mini procedures to try to help, but I still have scars and stretch marks. It was inevitable for me, but I've heard it gets rid of some peoples stretch marks.

I had a dog ear (skin on my side that was pointy like the tip of a dog's ear) removed and two belly button lifts to try to help my skin STILL around the belly button. It still sags a bit but over all I'm very happy I did it. I can wear normal clothes and more importantly normal underwear. It feels so good to be able to wear cute undies. That is a luxury skinny girls take for granted! Again for before and after pics click on my older post to see for yourself.

Workout- Run- tempo 5 miles 44:00 including warmup and cooldown

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Seriously???

OK, my hubs and I hiked for 3 1/2 hours and I had probably had enough. So how in the heck am I going to RUN for over 4 hours? I assume that will my time since most blogs I read have an average marathon time of 4:15-4:30. But SERIOUSLY!!!! I have never exercised for longer than an hour and a half (except for bike riding) ever! I can't seem to wrap my tiny brain around that concept. The last three miles of my half marathons you know what I was thinking? I was thinking, "OH MY GOD WHEN AM I GOING TO BE DONE???" And that will now be my half way point. What was I thinking? Am I mental? I always thought people who ran marathons were C-R-A-Z-Y!!!!! So now apparently I am a crazy one too.

I could barely get through my Jillian Michaels video today because I had 3 insane boys crawling on me, under me, running circles around me, trying to do my exercises too but leaning on me while doing it, etc. But I did it! And had an AWESOME smoothie afterwards:
1/2 cup froze mango
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
3/4 cup light orange juice
1/2 cup Dannon Light & Fit peach yogurt
1 scoop Flax

It was very summery and tropical! I usually have mixed berry or chocolate/banana/PB2 so this was a nice change.

Workouts:
Run- 4 mile easy in 40:50
Circuit Training- Level 2 Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Power and Choices to Make Changes

It's the start of my 3rd week of marathon training. In May after my half marathon, I was all gung ho about trying a marathon. I felt strong and powerful. Now days, it terrifies me. I have completely lost my stamina since I hardly ran for the month after my half. Lately, it's hard to do my long runs without stopping. I NEVER used to stop running during my long runs. On Saturday, I stopped FOUR times! I must say though, I think I was extremely dehydrated even before starting to run. Then I didn't drink much when I left and it was 10:00 am and about 80 degrees! I did take my hand held water bottle but it gets hot VERY quickly. I even put a little bit of ice it and it was hot after the first mile. My mouth was salty before I went out my door. All not normal. Probably has something to do with the two 24 ounce beers I drank the night before! I went home on mile 6 to get fresh cold water. My whole upper torso was soaking wet. Now I normally sweat when I run, but this was something new. My arms were drenched. It was not pretty! After drinking a lot of cold water, I went out to run my last mile without stopping. I have GOT to start getting up earlier on my long run days during the summer or I'm never going to make it!

Backtracking, Friday was supposed to be a rest day. My hubs, son and I went on a little hike and did a little GeoCaching. I was disappointed though in my child because he started whining that his legs were tired and we wanted to go home. It was hot outside but it saddens me that he couldn't suck it up. It's beautiful where we were hiking and he always says he wants to hike with me. But when it came down to it, he just wanted to go back to play with his friends. To make up for it, my hubs and I went out to finish the hike on Sunday. It's a loop up into wilderness and then back around to more meadowy swamp lands. It should take about 7 miles to do the whole loop. You climb up to 2900 feet in elevation! Well we got to a fork in our path and decided to take the "high" road. Well this got up way off track and we ended up walking over 8 miles. And we forgot to put on bug spray, so I'm covered with 7 bug bites! It's such a pretty hike though. Here are some pics for you to enjoy too!





I'm still super sore from the hike, my yesterdays workout, and then today I did hill practice! My hubs and I were talking on our hike about we are both whining about working out and not losing weight. We decided that it's our POWER and our CHOICES about our weight. We both no this but it's so easy to give up or make excuses. No excuses here. I know what my problem has been:
  • too much munching on nonhealthy food
  • not enough sleep
  • bad eating on the weekend

These are my things to work on! Here are my workouts from the long weekend:

Workouts-

Friday- 3.5 mile hike

Saturday- 7 mile run in 71 minutes

Sunday- 3 mile run in 31 minutes + 8 mile hike

Monday- No More Trouble zones video + 35 minutes Wii Active

Tuesday- 5 mile run with hill intervals

Thursday, July 2, 2009

When will I learn?

Yesterday I was awoken by two little curly hair blond boys at 7:30 AM. "Mommy, I need bwreakfiss!" Don't they realize their older brother had me up until midnight? My sons friend was too cute though. As I was lying out their blankets on the air mattress they were going to sleep on, he says to me, "You ARE the woman of the house aren't you? You work the hardest huh?" I now love this boy. My son tried to pipe up by saying, "I work too." And his friend replied, "Not like she does." He lives mostly with his single mother and she obviously is teaching him right!
Since I was up, I starting packing lunches for the day. I decided to take the older boys to a water park and take my twinsies to visit with grandma. At around 9:30 they came rolling out of bed to also ask for breakfast. I made it but also made them a deal....eat your breakfast upstairs and leave me alone to workout and THEN I'll take you to the water park. They were surprised and very happy to oblige. Until they needed me to get something. I must say though my kids only interrupted me two times yesterday. Much better than the day before! I haven't been to this water park since I was a teenager. It brought back lots of memories. I rode on all but one of the slides. Nice and refreshing on such a hot day. Plus, it was good exercise walking up the big hill to get to the slides. I did my part to relax by the pool also. A mama needs some down time.

Today though was another my muscles are so sore I don't want to move days. I idiotically started researching vacation places BEFORE running. Well then I was getting hungry but I don't like to eat before I run. Then the children came along and finally when it was time to run it was almost noon! No food and hardly any water...NOT GOOD WOMAN!!! I ate a bag of 100 calorie Emerald almonds and several handfuls of caramel rice cakes. After my 5 minute warm up, I could feel the belly ache. Why do I do these things to myself? Again it took me awhile to get it done, but I got my 4 mile tempo run in today. I was so sore it even hurt in my triceps today as I was running!

Workouts:
Wednesday- 3 mile easy run + Level 2 Jillian Michaels 30 day Shred
Thursday- 4 mile tempo run

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Featured Post

I have to give a big shout out to Lisa over at Workout Mommy. She did a featured post about me finding fitness while also being the mom of 3 crazy boys. It's always flattering when someone wants to talk about my efforts. Thank you Lisa and if you don't read her blog it's great!

Being a mommy, I had a hard time today. I was up late and was woken up early. Finally around 10:30 I dragged my tush on the treadmill. Today I had a choice menu of things to run as long as it was between 4-5 miles. I decided to do intervals. At first, I warmed up for an easy mile. After that I started with a 30 second sprint, recovered for 2 minutes, then upped it to 45 sec. sprint, 2 minute recover. I alternated between speeds 5.7-6 on the recovery and 8 for the sprints. I shouldn't even call them sprints, but it's pushing my limits for a period of time. I ended with about a half a mile cool down. What my treadmill said took 49 minutes to run in mommy time took almost 3 hours off and on. Normally my kids are better about bugging me. Next time I either need to :
A) Not be up so late so I can run earlier
B) Try to run at the gym where hopefully they won't interrupt me
C) Wait until they nap to run
D) Beat them ;)

All but D are all viable options. Tomorrow is a light run day, so I'll probably run and then do some Jillian and Wii Active. Getting to bed early may be an issue though since my oldest son is having a sleepover tonight! Ugh.

Workout: 5 mile interval running 49:20 under the Fartlek method on my Runner's World Training Plan

Monday, June 29, 2009

Wii Active

So you know how you get those gifts sometime that make you think, "This gift isn't really for ME?" I feel that way many times when I get a "gift"from my hubs that I know I'll never use but he will. For example, one Christmas he gave me a Family Tree Maker CD. Now there's nothing wrong with family or anything, but I am not a genealogy nut like he is. I think that was the first thing he opened and he rushed to the computer right away to you know...install it for me. He's so sweet. Well, I have to admit, for Father's Day I kind of did the same thing. I bought my hubs new lighter hand weights (since Jillian Michaels is a crazy woman and is trying to kill us). I also bought him a Wii Active program. Do I think he will use it? Yes. Do I also think I will use it? I tried it out just today (before he has) and I like it. We already have Wii Sports and Wii Fit so I knew I liked the idea. I'd read about it in my various Fitness and Weight loss magazines and I kept toying with the idea of buying it. I was on the fence though because I liked my Wii Fit, in fact I was obsessed with it for awhile. But I am a busy working mom and the Wii Fit can take forever. There's a lot of talking in between and I just want to workout and not listen to a computer generated trainer give me the same advice, "You're strong but you need to work on your stability." My hubs and I both used the Wii Fit a lot this winter but have been on our running and Jillian kick lately. But I went ahead and bought it since it's supposed to individualize a program just for you.
Today I entered my weight loss and fitness goals. I also took a food survey to see what it said. Then it came up with 12 different exercises for me that I am supposed to be able to finish in 20 minutes. It also gave me the option of low impact, medium, or high impact exercises. I had choices that I could select or remove and it gave the estimated finish time and calories I would burn. I only selected 5 exercises since I had already gotten my butt kicked by Jillian, but when it said the estimated amount of calories I'd burn was 47 that was unacceptable! I did my 5 and then chose to do some more. I like that it gave both cardio and strength training choices. It was kind of like interval training. Tomorrow is supposed to be different exercises to keep it fresh. Also there was an option to watch a demo or not, so that could be a time saver. There didn't seem to be a lot of talking and button pushing between exercises either like in Wii Fit. I'll keep you posted on how I like it. I just want to keep doing strength training and running. I usually just run and I know that I need to strength train. Unfortunately, since I'm usually short on time I choose to get my running in and then don't have any strength training time. I'm working on it since I know it's important to my health AND should make me a better runner.

Workouts- Monday Jillian Michaels No More Trouble Zones DVD and 15 minutes on Wii Active

Sunday, June 28, 2009

New Experiences

I have only been off of work a week and a half and I have been working out like crazy! My hubs had a three day weekend and we did a lot together as a family.

Friday was supposed to be a rest day. I didn't run, but I did workout HARD. We went on a 5 mile bike ride which doesn't sound like a big deal. But when you're pulling 70 lbs. of dead weight behind you, it definitely burns the legs. My husband just discovered a new activity, well for us anyway. From what I've read they call it a "sport" but it doesn't seem like one to me. It's just really fun. It's called GeoCaching. To those of you muggles (nongeocachers), GeoCaching is where you get Satellite coordinates to a location. You can also get clues and information online before going in search for the cache. It's like a secret society/scavenger hunt/hide and seek. You find the secret spot with a compass or GPS device (my Garmin works). Once you get to the spot you have to find where the cache is hidden. Sometimes we find it, sometimes we don't. In a regular sized cache there's usually a notepad and pencil to write your name and date to kind of "claim" that you found it. Then there could be other things inside that if you like you can take, but you have to leave something in it's place. It's hard to explain, but our family had a lot of fun just trying to find these things hidden all near our own house! It made bike riding and hiking like a little adventure. We were out on our biking caching for over 4 hours! Our 8 year old is in to it! I was very proud of my hubs and I today because we were at a toga party last night. I've never been to a toga party and it was so much fun! But I have to admit, we were both really hungover. Despite our hangovers, we both ran 3 miles today PLUS the bike riding that was almost 8 miles plus all of our off trail hiking. We're trying very hard to be an active family!


Here's a pic from the toga party:


Workouts:

Thursday- Run 4.5 miles Friday- 6 mile bike ride Saturday- 5 miles long run

Sunday- 3 miles run + 7.8 miles bike ride

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Trying to break some new habits

I remember over a year ago being at a Weight Watchers meeting. There was a guest Leader that day. I remember her saying that she counted every BLT: bites, licks, and tastes. I remember thinking that was weird. Why would anyone need to count one little bite here and there. Besides, at the time I wasn't tempted to do that because I had stronger self control. But as I have become more complacent in my eating, I find I do nibble. A LOT! And it's usually off of what most mommies do...my children's plates. I'm only lying to myself thinking I can nibble and not count it. It's not a full meal and nobody saw me so it doesn't count. Really? You know better!
I have been working REALLY hard this week to not do that. I am still trying to fully potty train my strong willed twinsies. To bribe them, we offer sugar cookies with the frosting on them or KitKats or other cookies...basically we're desperate to get them pooping in the potty OK. Please don't' judge...they're 3 1/2 for crying out loud! (I also take them to the pet store too which is a cheaper healthier treat for them) Anyway, we give them the cookies and they love that the earn them, but they never eat them all the way. They leave about half left over. Now the last 2 nights I had those cookies sitting next to me. Staring at me! Calling for me to eat them. I was trying to to look at them. In my mind I was plugging my ears saying, "La la la I cannot hear you." I'd glance at them from my peripheral vision but then quickly break eye contact. Finally, I just got up and put them down the garbage disposal. That way I couldn't you know, maybe get them back out of the trash if they didn't really touch anything dirty. Not that I've ever done that or anything! I think what helped me was tracking. After each meal I immediately wrote it down so I wouldn't forget something. Since I did not have the 2 points needed to have that cookie, I did not eat it. Plus for me once I bit into that sugary naughtiness, I can't stop with just a bite, or two, or half of the cookie. I'd probably grab the other half and then find something else and then I've worked my way into a guild ridden sugar comatose! Not worth it! My hubs and I have said to each other this summer we want to get into the best shape of our lives. I can't get there with eating the BLT's and not counting them. Those little nibbles add up. And where they add up are right on my love handles. I don't need any new additions there. That space is already at full occupancy to me! I want some vacancies to open very soon if you know what I mean!
Today was day 3 of marathon training. My muscles are still sore! I will be doing a lot of stretching and rolling out the muscles. This is the first time I have worked on strength training with my running. I hope to not be this sore everyday!

Today's Workout: 3 easy miles in 33 minutes and 40 minutes doing Levels 1 & 2 of Jillian's 30 Day Shred. Earned 5 activity points

Daily points allowance 20 + 4 activity points

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Soreness

The day after I do a Jillian Michaels video I am sore for days. You know it was a hard workout when you are sore throughout the day. I used my marathon stick to try to roll out the muscles. My sons crack me up. They will pick up my stick and start to roll it on their legs like mommy. They also will find my weights, pick them up, and start moving like they're doing a squat! They are 3! It's too cute! It was good that I had an easy run day today because I am stiff. It helps when you have stiff muscles though to get them moving. The more I sit, the more stiff the legs get.
Today is the first days I've run for about a month. I always tell myself to not take a long time off because my stamina disappears quickly, but I took a month off! I ran VERY easy (slowly more like it) today. I ran 4 miles in 43 minutes. Ugh! But I was sweating so I got a good workout in. I love staying home in the summer with my guys, but I didn't run for 43 minutes straight. I have little men coming to me and saying, "Mommy can I puffs!" "Mommy Jacky hit my eye." "MORE JUICE!!" etc. They always want me to pick them up and then I hear, "Mommy you're wet." Yes I do get a bit sweaty wet...live with it dudes! It's so nice outside and it kills me to run on the treadmill. Right now I don't have a choice unless I wish to run pushing the two of them in a trailer. They aren't able to ride bikes yet. My only other choices would be to wake up at 5 am to run (hello I'm on vacation) or wait until the kids are down for bed (then I won't be able to go to sleep). So the treadmill it is. I may have to run on the treadmill at the gym though. Maybe I wouldn't get interrupted so much. Then again, when I took them last year they always kicked me out since the twinsies wouldn't stop crying!
It's feeling good to get back to training. Another thing I got back to was tracking! I haven't tracked for about a year. Maybe this is my problem with these 13 extra pounds. I wrote everything down yesterday, stay on points, earned 4 actitivy point for my video and what did I get for all my good work? I was up .8 on the scale today. I won't let it get me down though since it could be the cookies and ice cream I ate on Father's Day catching up to me. Well I'm off to take the maniacs outside!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Marathon Training Day 1

What I find funny about my 1st day of training for a marathon is that I didn't run at all. I am following The Rookie Marathon Training Plan by Runner's World. Mondays will be cross training days. On these days, I plan on doing any of my Jillian Michaels DVDs, riding my bike with the kids in the trailer in the back, or the StairMaster. I did Jillian's No More Trouble Zones DVD today. I've done this DVD 4-5 times now and it never gets easier. It's a killer and that's why I love it.

On a completely different subject, my 8 year old son had a sleep over on Saturday night. Unfortunately, many things happened at this sleepover that I don't necessarily approve of. For example, they had a scavenger hunt where they went door to door to strangers houses asking for obscure things. Also, the mom took a mini van full of them to tee pee peoples houses until 2 am. When I picked him up I could see he had stuff on his face. I asked what it was. He said, "We had smores for breakfast." Ugh, really? Are you kidding me? So it made me feel really good when we got home that he and I made a really healthy brunch for the family. We made flax pancakes, eggs, turkey sausage, and fresh fruit on the side. Both the hubs and child are very picky eaters, so I was nervous about the pancakes. It was the first time I made them. Both of them loved the pancakes! I got the recipe from the back of my Milled Flax that I buy in a big tub at Costco. Also, I have never had a meal sustain me for as long of a time as this one did. We ate brunch at around 11 and I didn't want to eat again until 5:30! My boy definitely needed some fiber and protein. In fact, it's 10:30 where I love and the poor kid is still sleeping! That's not like him at all. Good thing we're off for summer break!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Scared but Willing to Try

It's not quite official, but I printed out a new training guide for a marathon. A MARATHON!!! This from a girl who said she'd never run. This from a girl who used to say she'd rather get stabbed in the eye with an ice pick than run. This from a girl who said she NEVER had the notion to do a marathon. A marathon was beyond my scope of comprehension. Well, since I've done 2 half marathons I started thinking, "Maybe I actually CAN do this." Never say never right? I am completely terrified. Even though I've been running for about 2 years, I still feel like a newbie that knows nothing.
I have had several people message me about how I started running. I had lost all but 10 pounds of my weight when I really took to the gym. I started with the elliptical, then the ArcTrainer, and the rowing machine. The ArcTrainer and Rowing machine really got my heart rate up and made me sweat (which I like in a workout). I never really got sweaty or out of breath on the elliptical unless I had the resistance up full blast. I started reading my Weight Watchers books about how long it would take me to earn 4 daily activity points. If I did a moderate exercise, I would need to do it for 90 minutes to earn 4 pts. Now I am a mother of 3, 2 of which are twin toddlers. I don't usually have 90 minutes a day for cardio. Then I looked up what Weight Watchers considers High activity. This included jogging and running and to earn 4 activity points I'd only need to do it for 35 minutes. That I can handle. So my sister-in-law, who also used to be overweight, took up jogging and it really slimmed her down. Plus I watched Biggest Loser contestants running so I finally thought I'd try it. I started at a really slow pace, probably 4.8 and would try to run for 5, walk for 5. Then I'd bump it up the next time to maybe 7 minutes running, 5 minutes walking. Eventually I was up to 35 minutes. Once I could handle that time for awhile without feeling like I was going to die, I gradually increased my speed. I ran at the gym at first one summer. Then of course school started and I quit running because I let that be my last priority. Not healthy I know. Then for Christmas I bought a Treadmill. That was money well spent. My hubs and I run and it still to this day. Now that I've run outside though, I definitely like it better. I don't stop running when I'm outside. I seem to find excuses to stop and start a lot when I run on the Treadmill.
My hubs, who I love but is cheap, cheap, cheap, told me that a friend of his whom has run several marathons loved the Portland marathon. He said it's not too hilly and the crowd is fantastic. I like the fact that you can run with your Ipod. I can't believe some races will disqualify you for running with music. I couldn't do it! I need my tunes for motivation. So that's the marathon I am going to train for. I have 15 weeks which makes me a bit nervous because they recommend 18 weeks. I haven't really been doing much exercise since my half. I will officially start on Monday. I hope to truly make a commitment but next month!
Any of you runners out there have advice for me on training for my 1st half? I printed out Runner's World Marathon guide for beginners. Any one try that plan? How often do you eat during your long over 13 mile runs?