Thursday, March 31, 2011

About those goals of mine...

I'm not sure if any of your read E's blog, but recently she had a post regarding goals.  It's been hovering on my mind ever since I read her quote:

"If a goal does not have a timeline on it, it's not a goal, it's a dream."

I've had plenty of goals that I've mentioned over the past few months:
  • Lose the last 20 lbs
  • Start a weight-lifting program
  • Drink more water
  • etc.
These have been goals that I've really wanted to achieve.  The first one in particular absorbs way more thoughts per day than anything else.  I think about those last 20 lbs all day every day.  I think about them when I look in the mirror, when I'm on a run and can feel the extra fat jiggling (fat jiggles hurt ya'll), when I'm trying on my work pants in the morning (and when I split them!!), when I look at new clothes in magazines and think about updating my wardrobe and realize I don't want to do that until I'm at goal weight because that's just a waste of money...and on and on.

So much thought process put into that one goal.  So much time consumed obsessing about that one goal.  But what do I have to show for it?

I've been at the same weight (give or take a couple of pounds) since October.  OCTOBER!!!  That is HALF A YEAR without any progress.  I've been running and watching my weight, so what gives?  What changed?

First, I've stopped giving my goals a time limit thus relegating them to nothing more than dreams.  Sure, I can think about losing those last few pounds every hour of the day but that doesn't equate to putting in the effort required to achieve the task.  My success in the past was specifically related to goals.

I will lose 2 lbs by my family reunion...I will lose another 2 lbs by this date...etc.

It is time to go back to my roots and FORCE myself into really digging in and getting back on track.  I've been involved in this journey, but only halfway.  Somehow I thought that running and tracking(ish) would get me all the way to the finish line.  Well, turns out that my halfway attempt at doing this has left me stuck at only halfway--I've lost 25-something pounds and I have exactly that to go.

I want those 25ish pounds off my frame more than you can believe.  I want to be smoking hot in a bikini by the time 4th of July comes around and it is so hot outside that I have no choice but to be in shorts and swimwear.

So, let's put a timeline on this bad boy.  April goals are as follows:

  • Lose 4 lbs by April 30th (this would put me at around 148)
  • Run 80 miles
  • Rock my first HALF MARATHON!!
  • Fit comfortably in my size 30 jeans from Buckle (they used to fit and are now back to being dangerously tight, especially given my history...
I'm going to have to incorporate a closer watch on my food intake as well as mix up my routine a little bit. Michelle really inspired me this morning with her review of her progress this March.  She's done a great job of cross-training and mixing it up a bit.  I am almost positive she will see the results of that switch soon--whether on the scale or with the way her clothes fit.  I cannot wait to see the change for me as well.  April is going to treat me well!

What plans do you have for the month of April?  What goals (not dreams!) are you committing to?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Caramel Karma

Let me tell you a little story.  It starts out with a birthday filled with fun and food.  Cake and caramels were in ample supply and were eaten joyously.  It was a day of freedom and a carefree attitude towards the sweeter things in life.  It was only one day--what harm could it do?

Flash forward one day.  Everything is fine and dandy.  There are minimal regrets on the once a year binge (though there is a small bit of guilt which is to be expected).  Overall, I was feeling pretty good about my birthday and about moving forward from the bad eating of the day and starting fresh.  I was tracking my calories, drinking my water, and participating in general good health.  I figured this would override any harm I may have done to myself the day before.  I even went for a 4.5 mile run.

The run started out well--I found that I was running a big faster than I wanted to but couldn't seem to slow my pace.  I blame the song (Rollin' in the Deep--Adele).  It just urged me to run faster.  My heart beat quickened and I was in the zone.  It felt good to be running.  

As the miles added up, I found myself finally slipping back into my regular rhythm.  No longer was I focusing on everything and anything that I could possibly focus on.  My brain finally settled down and just...was.  I wasn't focusing on the pain of the run, or the shortness of breath, or anything else related to the act of running.  My body finally just let me run and let me escape.  Most of the time I didn't even realize I was running; I was just lost in enjoying the music.  I had lost this ability after taking a break due to the injury, and I've been very eager to get it back.  Runs are awful when you have to actively participate in them!

Anyway, around mile 3 it became clear that my poor nutrition from the day before was not providing me a good base of energy.  I felt sluggish and yucky.  Then the dreaded happened.  The runner's nightmare--urgent need to use the bathroom and no bathroom nearby.  I've never had that problem on short runs!  Luckily, it was only half a mile (longest half mile of my life!) to my house so I made a quick route change and headed that way.  Not to go into details, but apparently my body decided it would be a good idea to enact a swift revenge on me for treating it so poorly on my birthday.  Clearly, my food choices did not agree with my body.  I paid for it during the run, and through the rest of the evening and morning.  Caramel Karma struck with a vengeance.

I wasn't about to let that deter me though; I had set out to run 4.5 miles and I was going to get it done no matter what.  After paying my debt to Caramel Karma, I quickly ran back outside and finished the last mile of my run.  I chose to ran the last section around the park near my house, and it felt wonderful.  The air was crisp and clean, the kids were out playing baseball, and families were starting to brave the chill temperatures and try to force Spring out of hiding.  I can feel warm weather coming, and cannot wait!

Overall, my pace for this run was much improved over the last couple of runs I've done.  Here is a quick look at my splits:
I have been running at a 12 minute mile plus pace since coming back from my injury, and since before the injury I was around a 10 minute mile I am anxious to get back to where I was.  I hate losing that hard earned pace!  Hopefully my body will remember and I can get back to 100% shortly.  Either way, I was very pleased with how this run went (I am choosing to ignore the potty break).  And consider this a lesson learned--I am going to be a LOT better about how I choose to feed my body and make sure I give it the energy it needs to perform like I want it to.  Thankfully yesterday my eating was completely on program.  Wahoo!

So...learn from my mistakes.  Don't binge on sugary foods for your birthday.  You won't like the present that your body decides to give you a day later.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Birthday Calories Don't Count

That was the motto yesterday, and it's a darn good thing too because I REALLY don't want to know how damaging the food I ate was.  Surprisingly, I have no guilt because it was nice to take a day off from stressing and relax.

Hubster made the day special by always trying to think of things that would make me happy.  He went way out of his way on the hunt for the perfect birthday cake.  In the end (with a little help from me) we discovered the most delicious creation in the world.  Normally I try not to post these delicious food items because whenever I stumble on food blogs I end up craving the foods they show something ridiculous and I don't want that to happen to my readers, but this cake was so good it nearly deserves its own post.

Enter-- the Coldstone Creamery Cake Batter Ice Cream Cake:

Becky's Birthday 001

Holy deliciousness.

Becky's Birthday 007

This thing has layers of delicious cake, then cake batter ice cream (my FAVORITE--don't knock it till you try it), then a layer of cookie dough, and then the layers repeat.  Ummm...that's pretty much all my favorite things wrapped into one delicious package.  Remember this for your next calorie free birthday.

In addition to eating some of the caramel my friend made for me (not as much as I would've in the past--I tried to keep it reasonable) I also had a dinner of Little Caesar's breadsticks.  You might remember that they are one of my all-time favorite guilty pleasures.  I normally do not eat them (because they are SO BAD for you!) but we did opt to eat them for dinner when our actual dinner plans fell through due to the restaurant being closed on Mondays.  Boooo.  Dinner at that restaurant is scheduled for another date.

My mother-in-law also brought me some beautiful flowers at work:
Birthday Flowers 007

Birthday Flowers 010

I love them!  Gerber daisies are my favorite and the color on these is so intense!  The pictures don't do it justice.

All in all, it was a great day and that doesn't even include the fun I had on the weekend with Running Roommate!  Hubster and I drove up to her locale and had dinner as saw The Adjustment Bureau.  It's a good flick!

I really enjoyed the chemistry between the two actors.  I'm glad we went to see it!

Today the plan is to run 4.5 miles.  Wish me luck!  I've got some excess calories to burn off!  :)

Monday, March 28, 2011

It's my berfday, ya'll!

Berfday = birthday.


I'm 27 years young today.  I had someone ask if it was my 29th birthday followed directly after by someone asking me if I was 23.  I feel like these balance out.  Apparently my age is hard to peg.  So far I have had someone bring me an entire plate (12" wide x 18"l) of caramel.  Someone save me from myself!  I'm in troubbble.

The good news is that I am BACK.  I am back in the running game.  I ran a whopping TEN MILES this weekend.  Let me just say that again--TEN MILES!!  Holy.  Crap.  It hurt so much.  So very very much.  But it was awesome.  I am very happy to finally be in the double-digits.  I earned those miles and my muscles continue to remind me of the accomplishment throughout the last few days.  They are quite sore, but in a good way.  No injuries!  HOORAH!

The walking like a gimp is a badge of honor.  I wear it with pride.  I'm hoping to run 4-5 miles today or tomorrow.  It depends on my birthday activities.  I'll let you know how it goes!

Have a great Monday!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Let this be a Lesson...

Excessive eating of these:

I ate this many x1000
results in this very mortifying event:

Jason's Birthday and Milwaukee 032

That's right...I totally split a huge 6 inch rip into my pants as I was leaving for the airport on Wednesday.  Awesome.  It is a DARN good thing it happened when I was making my move to sit down in my car and not while in the office.  It is also a good thing I happened to be traveling somewhere where I had packed more than one set of pants (even though I was only going to be gone for one day) and I could promptly change my outfit in the car.  No one (but my loyal readers) had to witness my shame.

Holy crap. 

Let's talk about that being the extra motivation to get my butt in gear!  I had also stepped on that scale that morning to a horrifying 4 pound gain which made me up 7 lbs from my last weigh in on this blog.  Umm...that ain't good, folks.  Anyone want to fly out to Salt Lake City and become my personal trainer (for free, of course) and whip my butt into gear?  Cuz someone needs to...

The good news is that I had already realized the poundage was an issue.  The day before I had woken up and while getting ready for work thought to myself that my pants were fitting tighter than they usually do (hmmm...foreshadowing for the next day's event?) and that something needed to be done to prevent me moving up a size.  So Hubster and I went for a 3.16 mile run.  I'm not gonna lie--it really sucks coming back from an injury and seeing so much progress lost.  I am so much slower than I was before the injury.  I'm back up to an 11:30 minute mile.  I'm hoping that will only last a month or so, because it does not please me!!

Speaking of cute is he?

Jason's Birthday and Milwaukee 002

Jason's Birthday and Milwaukee 009

Don't judge me on the's the first one I've ever decorated and I was in one helluva hurry.  I only have a very short period of time after work before the hubby got home!  It was a mad rush involving no less than 3 trips to the grocery store.  Boooo!

Jason's Birthday and Milwaukee 020
Hotel in Milwaukee was totally sweet...
 Also, I went to Milwaukee for a day.  It was a short and rushed trip.  We got in at 11 pm, had a meeting at 8 am till 2 pm, got to the airport at 2:30 and were in the air shortly afterwards.  Gotta love those short trips.  I did think it was cool that you could see the reflection of the plane in the engine though:

Jason's Birthday and Milwaukee 030

It is surprisingly difficult to get a good picture through an airplane window when you are using a ginormous camera.  Also, people may or may not look at you reallllly weird.  Sometimes I think they think the camera might be a bomb or something.  How is it that familiar items suddenly become unfamiliar and scary while 36,000 feet in the air?

Also, this is currently happening in Utah:

This means that my beautiful trip to Zion National Park has been postponed a week.  Double Boooo.  Oh well.  I will curl up, take a hot bath, and relax this weekend.  I will also go for a run.  This brings me to my next topic...

As you know, I was planning on running one race (at a minimum) per month.  Well, something I definitely didn't factor into my plan was the risk of injury.  Not being able to run very much as well as a severe shortage of races in the region during the month of March has put me in a pretty sad situation--I don't have a race for March.  I am 100% sure that there will be no chance for me to run a race this month.  So...I guess I will have to make up for it another month and run two races in a month.  Don't judge me!!  I really wanted to meet this goal.  Unfortunately, my only option is to run a non-official solo race.  Technically we call that a "run" and these occur all the time.  Somehow it doesn't have the same feel.  Sad face.

Anyway, it's Friday.  Tomorrow is Saturday.  Sunday comes afterwards.  I'm looking forward to the weekend.  :)

Forgive me for linking that monstrosity.  And good luck getting it out of your head.  :)

Monday, March 21, 2011

Big Birthday!!

Today is Hubster's 30th birthday!!

Fun fact:  Hubster's birthday is exactly one week before mine.  Another fun fact--my hubby is a twin.  It's a month of birthdays for us!

We are celebrating by going to southern Utah this weekend for hiking/biking around Zion National Park. If you haven't been there before, you should go RIGHT NOW. It's beautiful. Nature really outdid herself there. Can't wait!

Also, this week marks the beginning of full time training for my half marathon next month. Injury be darned--it's time to get this show on the road. So--3 miles today. I also finally finished reading this book and am ready to begin a weight-training program.  I'm nervous but excited.  The book does mention it isn't the best plan to do weight-lifting when training for a marathon, but I've also read that it is super important to have a strength training program for running big races.  Anyone have an opinion on the matter?  I favor the idea that having stronger muscles = less injuries and longer endurance.

Do you strength train when preparing for a big race?

(And a side note--my apologies for not posting much last week.  The stresses of the unexpected passing of my cousin Danny resulted in an unusual lack of motivation to write anything.  The funeral was last week and it was beautiful in a painful way. Thank you all for your kind words; they meant a lot to me!)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Perfect Day

Yesterday was a perfect day.  I ate right, tracked my calories, and GOT A RUN IN!!!  And the weather was absolutely perfect for a run.  I was in heaven!

I convinced my friend to join me for the run--I needed backup in case I had to be carried home!  It was nice to run at a slow pace and get outdoors.  I can't believe how good it felt to be outside and be running.  I missed it more than I thought!  We ended up doing 1.55 miles in 19 minutes (just over a 12:00 minute mile) which is a lot slower than I was running before my injury, but I really wanted to start out slow and make sure I didn't hurt myself worse.  I think it paid off--my calf felt great!  I could've ran longer, but my friend doesn't normally run so she was a bit worn out after our second loop around the park by my house.  She wanted to stop, so we decided to call it a day.  I was tempted to go for another mile after she left my house, but decided to play it safe and stop.  I think that was probably wise.
My bestie from high school--she was ready to call 911 if necessary!

Today my calf feels fine--no pain.  I'm going to go for a bike ride with my husband after work.  I want to be outside and enjoy the beautiful weather, but I don't think it's smart to run two days in a row just yet.  Hopefully the biking won't hurt either!

How's the weather in your neck of the woods?  If nice, what are your plans for enjoying it?

Monday, March 14, 2011

Time for some life spring cleaning...

I've been reinvigorated by the beautiful spring weather that has finally shown up.  It is time to do some spring cleaning, and that includes cleaning up bad habits that formed over the winter season.  I'm not talking about bad habits with housework (I've actually been really good there lately!); I'm talking about bad life habits.  

Confession #1:  I haven't counted calories with consistency for over 3 months.

Confession #2:  I binge-ate like it was going out of style this last weekend.  I ate myself sick...seriously.  The sugar I consumed made me feel AWFUL not to mention the guilt that came with it.

Confession #3:  Being injured has resulted in some really bad behaviors returning.  I no longer feel the drive to exercise.

Confession #4:  I am scared to death that I'm about to become my own worst enemy.  I've come so far to get in my own way now.

It is my birthday in two weeks, and I had always imagined that I would be at my goal weight by this date.  I started working out back in August and had about 40 lbs to lose.  I didn't think it would take me longer than 5 months to lose that weight.  However, I didn't account for the plateau of death I've been experiencing for the last few months.  I didn't account for the slip ups and injuries that would occur.  Instead of celebrating my birthday and spending some birthday cash on a new wardrobe, I find myself reevaluating my priorities and realizing that the plateau can only be blamed on myself.  

I got complacent.

I am SO close to being at a "happy" weight.  I have about 15-20 pounds to lose to get there.  I REALLY want to be at that weight by the time summer starts.  More importantly, I want to feel healthy.  I want to know I can run several miles at a time without tiring.  I want to know that I could arm wrestle a girl friend and beat them.  I want to know that I can defend myself if something awful were to happen to me.  

In the past week, I've felt health issues creeping back that I had effectively eliminated through my active lifestyle. Twice last week I found myself short of breath doing simple tasks.  Has my asthma already returned?  I believe it is starting to.  

So, I am recommitting (for the umpteenth time).  Time to start running again (and if it hurts too bad, time to learn a new cardio workout), time to start lifting weights, and time to start tracking those calories.  It's hard because it is worth it.  And eventually it isn't so hard.

Did any of you catch Elle's post about 10 things?  (I can't link it right now...PriorFatGirl website is down for some reason)  Basically, she said that anytime she is tempted by sweets or by the comfy couch she makes a list of 10 things she wants more than the sweets or the couch.  If she can't name 10 things she wants more than that particular temptation, then she can have it.  Here's my 10 Things list for the moment:
  1. I want to look good in my bikini this summer
  2. I want to not have to worry about a muffin top
  3. I want to buy new jeans that fit in a small size
  4. I want to finally be at my goal size so that I can buy a larger wardrobe and stop having to wear the same pair of pants/slacks every day (I'm too cheap to buy more than one pair because I KNOW I will lose more weight!)
  5. I want to have a flat stomach
  6. I want to feel that I am a sexy woman
  7. I want to stop being self conscious about my butt/thighs
  8. I want to be a healthy size so my family will back off about my weight gain and stop gossiping about it behind my back
  9. I want to no longer be afraid to step on the scale in front of my husband
  10. I want to feel strong
I definitely want ALL of those things more than a cookie or a brownie.  I need to start remembering why I started this journey and why it is important that I eat healthy.  I challenge you to make a top 10 list for yourself to help get you through your temptations.  It is certainly a great way to put yourself back on track.

I'm going to go for a run tonight.  I don't know how many miles; it will depend on my injury.  The important thing is to get started and get moving.  Wish me luck!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Drifting Along

Being injured has resulted in some bad habits.  I find myself not as invested in watching my calories and staying active.  In my head it's like "if I can't run, then I don't want to do ANYTHING..."  That's a bad bad mantra right there.  I did buy a weightlifting book for women and I am excited at the concept of lifting weights.  I've lifted in the past and find that I prefer it to cardio usually, but somehow this hasn't been enough to actually get me to use my gym membership.  I need to finish the book so I can begin the program.  I think it will be critical to breaking through my plateau.  Plus, I really just like the look that lifting weights gives to a body.  I just want to be nice and toned.

I am so glad it is Friday.  I feel like this week was far too busy and hectic for its own good, and I am ready for a weekend where I can just unwind.  I plan on trying to run a mile on my leg and see if it is healed up enough to get back into the running groove.  If not, I'll make an appointment with a PT straight away.  I'm just really hoping that I can get back up to my level of running soon.  I miss the big mileage runs!

What plans do you have for the weekend?

Thursday, March 10, 2011

An Update on the Plane Crash

Thank you all so much for your kind words yesterday. Unfortunately, our worst fears were confirmed yesterday and my cousin and his fiance did not survive the crash. You can read an update on the article here. I will be headed up to Idaho in the next few days for the funeral. He was a great man who died doing what he loved!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

If you are the praying kind...

...please send thoughts my family's way. This is my cousin's plane and he was on board.  We are hoping for a happy ending.

What the heck?

Apparently my blog updating disappears when I cannot work out due to injury.  I'll have to fix that and soon!

I'm short on time, but here's what has been going on:

  • I got my hair cut!  Just a trim.  I told my hairstylist to "do what you want" and he said "I love it stays long."  So there you go.  
  • I went up to Idaho to spend time with my family and did a Zumba class while I was there.  It was so much fun and it was easier to do than the first time I tried it.  I am in much better shape than I was last year when I attempted it, so kudos to that!  
  • However, my calf did NOT appreciate Zumba and even though it's been 2 1/2 weeks since I did any activity on it it rebelled and was angry.  There is clearly something wrong. 
  • SO...I went to the doctor.  I'll have an update soon I hope.
I hope this last week has been good for you!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

2 am makes people do crazy things... sign up for the Top of Utah Marathon.

Holy. crap.

Admittedly, it wasn't a last minute decision and I've been planning on running this race for the past few months but actually registering for it has made it concrete and real and so scary and so awesome and so exciting.  Even better--Running Roommate has signed up to run it with me.  I never thought that I would be crazy enough to sign up for a marathon, let alone actually be excited about one.  For me this is the ultimate challenge; it isn't something you can just walk into and survive.  My body will be pushed and my willpower will be tested and I will come out a better person for having done this.

One of my coworkers was panicking a little about signing up and asked me if I really thought I could do it.  I told him without question that yes, I can.  It will be the hardest thing I've ever done, but our bodies are capable of great things.  I showed him the following video to illustrate my point:

What inspires you today?