Saturday, March 30, 2013

Saturday Spin

I'm trying spin again today. I'm actually excited! I hope it's a little easier this time, but I know it will be a good workout either way. (Today I'm wearing Capri workout pants, a dry fit shirt and my Brooks PureFlow IIs.) Then, I'm off to pick up the middle one from a sleepover...and have a mimosa or two with a good friend!! (Best Saturday ever!!!!)

I did end up getting a run in yesterday. Husband started C25K and asked me to do it with him. He has never liked running but desperately wants/needs to get into shape. I agreed and figured I could use it as some speed work; I have way more endurance right now, but he is much faster. Day 1 ended up taking us about 1.5 miles. He went home at the end and I went on to do the rest of the 5K. I intended to just take it easy and not worry about speed and had a nice run. So, I was shocked to see that I did my third mile at 11:25...that's really fast for me. Maybe this cross training thing is working?

I don't believe I'll get a run in tomorrow since it's Easter, but hopefully I can get some yoga in and a run on Monday.

Happy Saturday! I hope you can enjoy some fun/drinks with your friends, too!

Friday, March 29, 2013

My Absence

It's Holy Week and my son made his First Communion last night. I've spent the last couple of days baking, cooking, cleaning, worshipping and celebrating. While it has been fun, there has been no working out. Husband and I are both home today, along with the kids, and it has been a great morning so far. I'm trying to convince myself to go for a run before our neighborhood frozen yogurt place opens at noon. (Spin is on the agenda for tomorrow.)

Anyone have any encouraging words for me???

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Tick Tock Tick Tock

Holy cow is time flying! I can't believe we're already at the end of March. We have a First Communion coming up, then Easter..and then it's April. We have a weekend trip to celebrate a birthday after that and then we'll be full into baseball and softball season. I need everything to slow down! (I also need to figure out how to get my schedule to mesh with all of the ball games. Whose idea was it to have 3 kids?)

It's been over a month since I recommitted myself to being the healthiest I can be. There are times that I think I won't be able to do it, but then I realize how long it has already been! If I can do it for a week, then I can do it for two. If I can do it for two, then I can do it for a month. At this point, why not hold out for two months? (If I have a vodka or two...can I still be healthy? That is really the important question.)

It will be summer soon. I'll need to start training for my September half marathon. Training then will be much easier if I continue good habits now. If I focus on my goal of a 36 minute 5K for June, that will also help my half marathon training. Of course, I did 2 miles after work last night and it almost killed me. That was hard. I'm sure some of it was because I hadn't eaten dinner and had a very sparse lunch, but I wanted to stop the entire time. Like, within a few houses I thought going back to my house would be much better than going on. I did it, though, and averaged a 11:54/mile average. Not too shabby...I'll take it!

(NOTE - I started this post a few days ago and have no idea where I was going with it. So, forgive the abrupt end!)

Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Just a Little Patience

I am not a patient person; I never have been! It doesn't matter if it's a big surprise or a small thing...I don't want to wait. I realize that being impatient isn't a good trait in any situation (although, I think it can sometimes be a motivator!), but I can't help it. I am who I am.

My impatience spreads to my body image and workouts. I'm working so hard right now, at both my actual work outs and the balance between fitness and regular life. I'm paying attention to my diet and ensuring that I'm eating what I need to eat, having occasional treats and being healthy overall. This should be enough!

But it's not.

I want to look better NOW. I want to be in smaller clothes NOW. I want the number on the scale to be lower NOW.

In my rational moments, I know this isn't going to happen. I recognize that I will see results over time and that I should count other victories instead - like the 5K I did yesterday! I can even hear the advice in my head that I would give any girlfriend who complains to me about this very subject. Somehow, though, I can't follow the advice myself.

There have been so many articles and blog posts about why we shouldn't be so hard on ourselves. I don't have any new thoughts or advice. This is a day by day journey for all of us. I'm trying to focus on the things I'm doing each day that I didn't do before. I did that 5K yesterday. I went to yoga this morning. I've improved my diet. This is all good stuff!

You're probably beginning to see that I have no point. I have no way to end this post, except to say that I'm working on it. I'm trying to exercise patience. The same patience I will preach to my kids and friends. I will try to bask in my accomplishments and not worry about my supposed shortcomings. I will try.

Do you struggle with this? How do you handle it?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Monday Stretching

I can't make it to pilates on Wednesday night because I have a meeting. So, I tried sunrise yoga at the gym this morning. I was pretty excited about it; I've always loved yoga and know that stretching is very important if I'm going to become a better runner. My big concern was timing. The class is from 6:05a - 6:50a. I need to be home and ready for work by 7:30 in time to wake the kids up for school and be at work by 8. I wasn't entirely sure I could make it happen. But, you never know unless you try, right?

I made it to the gym just before 6 and waited in my car until they unlocked the doors. There were quite a few people waiting to work out, but I'd say that there were not even 10 in my class. It was a nice, small group. I was a little nervous going into this, because my only yoga experience has been using Wii Fit or doing home DVDs/videos. However, it all worked out. The teacher was easy to understand and I was able to keep up. I was able to do a little more on some poses and never felt silly if I had to hold back on others. There was definitely many different levels of yoga practice in there. I definitely think I'll try to make the Wednesday class, too.

I didn't want to make the same clothing mistake I made at pilates (wearing pants that sit too low and a shirt that rides up too much). Instead, I wore stretchy capris and a longish warm-up jacket. I was hoping that I wouldn't get too hot and it ended up working out just fine.

The nice thing about working out in the morning is that I don't have to worry about it after work. The husband has his baseball team draft tonight, so I need to take middle child to swimming. My evening will go much more smoothly without having to fit a workout in. (We're getting ready for youngest child's First Communion - taking place on Thursday - also, which means major house cleaning needs to happen at night. I'm excited for the Communion, but not so much about the cleaning.)

When do you prefer to workout?

Sunday, March 24, 2013

And on Sunday, I Didn't Rest

If things had gone as planned this week, I would be resting today.  Because I didn't work out on Wednesday or Thursday, however, I'm going to run this afternoon.

We just got home from church and Sunday School a little while ago. The youngest is at baseball practice and the middle one was just picked up from a sleepover. The dishwasher has been unloaded and reloaded and some laundry was folded. I'm going to eat lunch and then, after waiting a little bit, will attempt a 5K at 36 minutes. I can do it...right?

I'm a little nervous about adding the mile in its entirety today. I've been doing 2 pretty consistently lately, so a whole mile added to that seems like a lot. But, I guess we'll just see what happens. I need to remember not to be disappointed if I can't do it. My actual deadline (meaning, the race I'm planning to attend) to do this is in June, so I certainly have time.

Late this afternoon we'll be coloring Easter eggs with our nephew and having family dinner.

Happy Sunday!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Small Victories and a New Goal

My workout plan this week didn't end up working. I did pilates on Wednesday and really wanted to get a run in on Thursday. But, I had a meeting that I knew would go very late on Thursday night and thought it wouldn't be wise to get up too early that morning. Then, because I was up so late, I couldn't myself out of bed on Friday. I intended to run after work yesterday, but we were invited to spend the evening with friends and that sounded more fun! (And it really, really was!)

Saturday morning arrived with a slight chardonnay-induced headache. 8:45 spin? It didn't happen. I sat with my coffee, thinking about running and also thinking that the gym didn't sound even remotely appealing. The 29 degree weather didn't really sound nice for an outdoor run, either, but I knew something had to happen. I would've been pretty annoyed with myself if I hadn't done anything. I talked myself into bundling up in my cold running gear and heading out the door. And, guess what?!?!?!?! My first mile was 11:40 and my second was 12:02 - and that was with stopping for three cars to pass!). Woo hoo!

(I meant to take a picture of what I wear when I run in the cold, but I got distracted by my neighbors and I forgot. I'll try to remember for next time!)

I'm so pleased that I managed to get going this morning and I'm beyond thrilled that I'm managing to get faster. Remember, it's all about personal victories. There are certainly bazillions of people in the world who are faster than me. But, I went faster today than I have in the past and that's what matters. Those bazillions of people don't care how fast - or slow - I run.

Even though I already planned out my races for the year, my great run this morning made me decide that I need to shoot for a 36 minute 5K in the spring. My husband mentioned an evening race that happens in our neighborhood in June - I think that will be it! It was a really hot one last year, though, so I'll need to be careful with that. However - it's a goal and I'm in!!!

Happy Saturday, everyone! Get your exercise in and then do something with your family and friends :-)

Friday, March 22, 2013

How much is right?

When I first did C25K, I ran every other morning before work. I rarely missed a run and had a great schedule. However, changing jobs changed my schedule. The kids have also gotten busier. My husband's job changed. The end result is that I stopped running.

Last summer I had the brilliant idea to do the Disney Princess Half Marathon. I roped my sisters and mother into going on the trip, too, and doing the 5K. I started training in the fall and did pretty well with it. But, around the holidays, my plan just fell apart. I had a really hard time getting back on the wagon, despite a lot of very positive people in my life. I did manage to finish the race (it was at the end of February), but I know I could've done better.

Since the beginning of the year, I've been working with a nutritionist through a program at work. With her help, I began modifying my eating habits and have lost a few pounds. I've also been running a couple miles at a time, focusing on increasing my speed. Now, I joined a gym where I can take classes to help round out my workouts. But, how much is right?

I think my plan, for now, is to run 3 times a week (possible doing C25K with my husband and one kid), spin 1 time a week and do pilates 1 time a week. I know I should strength train, too, but I'm going to hold off for now. It's almost baseball/softball season for two of my kids, which means that my schedule is going to fill up pretty quickly. I know that I need to take time for me, but I have to make sure my family's needs are met, too.

What I hope is that my plan is enough. Once we're fully into spring I'll need to focus on a half-marathon training program, so I'll need to reevaluate then, anyway.

Any of you training for anything? What's your workout schedule?

Thursday, March 21, 2013

My Race Schedule

So far in 2013, I plan to run the following:

The Color Run (5k with my daughter and some friends), August
Mighty Niagara Half Marathon (with a friend), September
Turkey Trot (8k, November)

You may notice that my first run isn't until August and I'm good with it, although I'm not positive I won't do anything before that. But, for now, I need to focus on getting faster. It's not that I'm particularly worried about being speedy, but I know that to improve I need to be faster and stop taking as many walk breaks. So, my goal is to run a consistent 12 minute mile. (I'd say that right now I span between 12:30 and 14.) My last run was a treadmill run set for 2 miles at 12. It was hard, but I did it. The one before that was outside and I averaged 12:06. (My first mile - courtesy of my pink Forerunner 10 - was 12:17 and my second mile was 11:54.)

I'm going to be helping to organize a run to help a school in Haiti. (Info on that to come as I have it.) So, that race will definitely be added to my list. Otherwise, I'm content with it as it stands. My plan to work on my speed and work on my cross-training. My husband and daughter will be doing C25K, so I know I'll be running with them. I have more endurance than both of them, but they're definitely faster. I think I'll be able to count those workouts as speed work.

What's on your race schedule? Do you do speed work?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

My Core is Weak

When I say that my core is weak, what I really mean is that it's non-existent. Is it possible for me to be functioning with no abs? I'm pretty sure I have been.

Ok. Maybe I'm being a bit dramatic. But the lady outsides of the pilates room who told me that it wasn't hard IS A LIAR. It was hard. Like, I'm pretty sure getting out of bed tomorrow will be a huge accomplishment. I hope my husband is prepared to carry me to work.

In all seriousness, the class wasn't terrible. I didn't bring a mat with me, so had to use a gym mat. (If you're considering a class, make sure mats are available if you don't own one.) The teacher, Shannon, dimmed the lights as we were putting our mats down and removing our shoes. She put very mellow music on and then asked if there were any new people. I was the only one! She told me to keep up the best I could and not to worry if I wasn't doing everything because no one actually does. (That may b a lie, but I'm choosing to believe it.)

For 60 minutes, we rolled, stretched, crunched and all kinds of other things like that. Our legs kicked and swayed, our arms waved and bent. We took a lot of deep breaths. If I didn't know how sore I would be, it would've been relaxing.

My one rookie mistake was my clothing. I didn't realize that my pants would seems so low and that my shirt would ride up. I was incredibly self-conscious while I was rolling around that I was mooning everyone behind me.

I believe I'll take another class. If I can get into the habit of once a week, that will be good. This one was in the evening, so I just made dinner for everyone and set mine aside until I got back home.

I really hope that all of this ridiculousness is helping!!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Spinning Away

A friend of mine recently convinced me to try spinning. There were many months (years?) that I thought it was a terrible idea. However, she caught me in a weak moment and I agreed.

I spent the few days leading up to my first class alternating between insane nervousness and complete terror. I HATE BIKES. I've actually never owned a new bicycle of my own. Growing up, I used my sisters old bikes until I realized I prefer to walk. Now I was putting myself into the position of willingly climbing a bike for exercise - not even for the ultimate prize of an ice cream cone!

The biggest reason I agreed to try spinning is because I've heard that cross-training is a big deal. Apparently I can become a better runner if I try other types of cardio. Since I finished my half in OVER THREE HOURS, it stands to reason I could use some improvement.

In order to try the class I had to register as a guest at a local gym. I arrived early, filled out my form and waited outside the spinning room for my friend to finish her early strength/cardio class (because she's slightly crazy and was doing two class in one day!). She had saved us two bikes in the back so I didn't have to worry about not finding one or feeling stupid walking into the room for the first time. (That was a total relief because I'm pretty insecure about things like being an adult and walking into a room.)

The instructor was really cool and helped me get fitted on my bike. (This is important - the first class anyone takes should have an instructor who helps newbies get situated.) She assured me I wouldn't fall off, even though I assured her I would. She ended up being right.

My first class was 45 minutes long. I rode (spun?) next to my friend, with my legs going the whole time. The music played (I actually really liked the music she chose - it wasn't all rap/hip/current), the people sweat and everyone moved up and down. I occasionally attempted to stand and sit when everyone else was, but I didn't always succeed. But, I swear, I NEVER STOPPED CYCLING. I felt self-conscious when my belly seemed to stick out. I was embarrassed that I was very rarely in sync with anyone else. I also know that no one was actually looking at me.

I left the class and joined the gym. I have every intention of going to spin again next Saturday. I figure I have to do better than I did last week. And? My friend will be out of town, so I'm going alone. Can any of you join me?

My legs felt ok later that day. My legs felt ok earlier today, too, until I ran two miles at a 12:00 minute per mile pace. Now my legs are mad at me and yell every time I go down stairs or try to stand up from a sitting a toilet. I think I'm trying pilates tomorrow to give them a break.

Here's what I wore to my first spinning class: my running sneakers (Brooks PureFlowIIs), spandex shorts (at least 10 years old) and a t-shirt. I also wore a sparkly head band that I bought at the Princess race expo. I love that headband with my whole self.

Stay tuned for more spinning adventures!

Monday, March 18, 2013

In the Beginning

I started C25K in early 2011. That winter (into spring), I lost 40 pounds. I had given up gluten, as well (more on that later),  and was generally healthier and more fit. I did my first 5K in May and was thrilled to cross that off my bucket list.

In July, I started a new job. I left a group of coworkers that I really enjoyed and a schedule that was conducive to working out. My new routine started earlier and went later. Many days, I was driving over an hour to and from work. Running and eating well took a back seat.

Until now.

I managed to complete the Princess Half Marathon in Walt Disney World this past February, despite not finishing my training program. I was disappointed in my finish, though, and have signed up for another half taking place in the fall. I'm determined to train smarter - and completely - for this one. Due to health issues, I've also resigned myself to life without gluten, rather than just a few months.

This blog will document my journey. I'm not a professional runner. I'm overweight. I'm a wife, mother, full-time employee, volunteer and countless other things. In other words, I'm very much like you. I hope you enjoy my story!