There’s Always Gonna be Another Mountain

I’m finally getting excited about this fitness thing, and I feel like I’m settling into a routine.  Yay me!

In preparation for a quick hiking trip at the end of this month, I’ve been hiking a local “mountain” after school.  It’s a quick up and back with an elevation gain of a little under 400 feet.  It’s a good workout, but it’s definitely no Mt. LeConte!  On May 31 we will be doing the Alum Cave Bluff Trail up to LeConte Lodge for lunch–an elevation gain of about 2700 feet.  I am SO excited, and this time, we are taking my hubby’s boys, Zach and Tucker, along with Zach’s gorgeous and super fun fiance.  This will be her first trip and I’m happy to get to be the one to take her.

When I arrived home, I did the bodyweight exercises I had planned for myself.  I did three rounds of 10 kettle bell swings, 15 squats, and 10 lunges per leg.  I thought about going for a run, but a shower sounded better.

I have about 27 days to get in shape for this trip.  I love setting goals for myself, planning an attack and executing that mother-lover!  I know I won’t be in the shape I was in when we went in October, but I know I’ll be 27 days fitter than I am today.

Here are some pics you’ve probably already seen from my October trip.

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Happy trails! 🙂

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(Not so) Fit-versary: Two Years (Before, During, After, and back to During Pics)

April 30th was my two year anniversary of the day I decided to get fit.  I had big plans for the month of April:

  • I was going to weigh 150lbs.
  • I was going to be in the best shape of my life.
  • I was going to run a marathon.

None of these things happened because little did I know, I was no longer going to have a mother.  Just four short days after my half-marathon on October 4th, my mother became ill.  She was already ill–heart disease, kidney failure, dialysis, but she became hospital-ill.  In January, she became gravely ill.  A month later, she passed away.  And it was awful.  All of it.

I am a binge eater.  A stress eater.  An emotional eater.  A drinker. Bad, bad combo.  From October-January, I ate a little extra.  When I came to visit my mother at least once a week, I would also visit my favorite restaurant and order a burger and booze.  On occasion.  Infrequently.  Once in a while.  I put on a few pounds, but no big deal.

In February, my world blew up.  I dealt with her death well.  I stayed composed when everyone else crumbled.  I made arrangements.  I printed pictures for the tribute table.  I made a video slide show.  I composed a beautiful obituary.  I contacted family members.  I lovingly chose the last outfit my mother would ever wear.  I sifted through jewelry, found her dentures, located her glasses.  I chose flowers, signed papers, wrote thank you cards, and closed bank accounts.

I barely got to say goodbye.

There was no still, quiet moment with a single streaming tear in a solemn room alone with the woman who gave me life.

There was just busyness followed by emptiness.

To ease the pain, I drank.  A lot.  And I ate.  A lot.  I binge-ate, binge-drank, and binge-watched Grey’s Anatomy reruns. As a result, I don’t feel any better and I certainly don’t look any better.  I have gained about 40lbs (I’m TOTALLY guessing because I refuse to get on the scale).  I’ve been getting back into the swing of things.  Running or hiking a local trail after school, body-weight strength training, and eating the proper amount of calories.

So far, it’s been hit or miss.  I’m on the wagon a few days or a few weeks, and then I tumble off that sucker for a week or so and go hog wild (emphasis on the “hog”).

I did take measurements about 2 weeks ago, and I have lost inches, so that’s good.  That’s motivating.  Writing about this is also motivating, not to mention therapeutic.  Once I work up the nerve to get on the scale, I’m sure watching those numbers go down will be motivating as well.

I have set new goals for the summer and fall of 2015:

  • Run a 10k
  • Run a 13.1
  • Run a marathon in October.

Goals are good.  Goals keep a person going.  Goals give me something to focus on.  School will be out soon, and I plan to spend my summer running and getting back into the best shape of my life! 🙂

Where I was two years ago:

I like-a-da foods.

I like-a-da foods.

No chins were harmed in the losing of this weight...

No chins were harmed in the losing of this weight…

I had gained from the 2012 pic, and then started losing again in Apr 2013.  This pic is probably about 245-250.

Approximately where I am now:

Weighing in at about 190 here on April 9, 2014.

Jay Sheets and Marie Pearl…and ME!

Where I want to be:

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Baby Boomers 12 2014 017

Selfie-alert!

Selfie-alert!

A New Lesson

Just a quick update:

I’m still hitting bumps in the road, but I am not giving up.  I’m getting some decent runs in in the process.  Today I stayed after school–not to tutor–but to run with a student.  Things like this are part of what makes me a great teacher.  She’s a junior and wants to get into better shape the right way, so she came to me!  (Me!?  Really!?  It’s still hard to picture myself as a healthy person!)

In everything you do!

In everything you do!

We ran for 30 minutes after school, and she said she plans to run with me any day I am willing to stay.  We ran and talked (and walked in between!).  I helped her set some goals.  She wants to run a full mile (without stopping–no intervals) for her P.E. final in May.  I assured her that would be a piece of cake!  I convinced her to do a 5k with me in May as well.  That one, she’ll have to work for! 🙂

I’m excited, and so is she.  This may be the motivation I’ve been looking for–to BE someone’s motivation.

T-33 Hours to My First Half Marathon!

I am beyond excited.  And scared!  I have worked so hard for this race, and it is finally here.  Long runs, short runs, painful runs, hot, cold, never-ending, euphoric runs.  They will culminate in 13.1 miles of kick-a** racery on Sunday, October 5th.

I did my last training run this evening.  I have been so busy this week that I truly did not have time to run.  I felt a little…off…so I put in 3 miles tonight.  They were okay.  Cold.  I got a side stitch.  My knees hurt a little. But all in all, I feel very prepared and oh-so-ready for my race on Sunday.

The kids and I made signs tonight.  It was therapeutic after the week from hell I had.  The signs turned out nice!  Can’t wait to see them on the course! 🙂

I'm sure hubby was thinking two out of the three signs here the whole time we were making them.

I’m sure hubby was thinking two out of the three signs here the whole time we were making them.

Yes, I know they are cheesy, but a little cheese might be all I need to push me through the last few miles.

Thanks to all who have rooted for me, encouraged me, or gave this newbie some seasoned advice.  It is all so very appreciated.  Send me good running vibes on Sunday morning!

Keep running.  I know I will.

The Old Me

She came back.  After a year and a half of hard work, determination, and dedication to a true lifestyle change, somehow, someway, she found her way back.

I like-a-da foods.

I like-a-da foods.

She started creeping her way back in about two weeks ago.  It started innocently enough: I ran 9 miles today, so I can have a slice of pizza tonight.  I ran 10 miles this morning, so I can have some cake. And beer. No…beers…plural.  I  thought I could handle a few treats here and there.  The truth is, I can handle a few treats here and there.  Unfortunatlely that’s not what I was doing.  She came back and tried to eat the world.  Instead of a slice of wedding cake for a special occasion, she took me to the store for a bag of chocolate covered mini-donuts.  I had run 12 miles.  I could eat donuts if I wanted. At least, that’s what I thought…

I ate the whole damn bag.  Every last one. Over a thousand calories and a belly ache later, I couldn’t fathom what I had just done.

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Yep. That happened.

This week at work was a nightmare.  I was feeling busy, overwhelmed, under appreciated, and exhausted.  So exhausted that I thought I surely must be sick. Nope.  No fever, no cough, no symptoms….just t-i-r-e-d, tired! I only ran two nights last week, and only a few miles at a time.  😦  I also ate well during the day, but pigged out at night (in addition to the whole not running thing).

I was feeling a little lousy–emotionally and physically because of the week I had, and as a result, I spiraled out of control this weekend.

On Friday, I ate well during the day and then had junk all night.  Junk-junk.  Like, not even real food-junk.

On Saturday, we went to a Civil War Reenactment.

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(Photo cred to my awesomely talented friend Rheanna Wolk)

It was a lot of fun, but really hot.  We stopped in the little town nearby and ate.  Instead of a healthy salad, I had the catfish platter, fries, slaw, and an appetizer of jalapeno poppers.  Later that night, we went out for frozen custard, and then came home and had creamy chicken enchiladas.  We did a lot of walking, and I had run 1.5 miles that morning, but still…how disappointing.

Today, I got up knowing I was going to overeat.  Not just overeat…overeat bad food.  Stuff I normally wouldn’t touch.  I had Fruity Pebbles for breakfast (what a waste of calories).  We needed to run to the mall, so I had a huge pretzel there…with cheese sauce. On the way home, we stopped for custard again.  Her idea.  It was sooo good, but sooo out of my calorie allowance for the day.

While at the mall I got measured (34-friggin’DDD) and tried on a BRAzillion bras at Victoria’s Secret.  I bought two that kinda-sorta worked, came home to try them on again, and decided they weren’t for me.  They just weren’t supportive, and I need that in my life.  I took them off, told my husband, “I hate……….my body!”, and sobbed while hiding under my covers.  Poor guy came in to console me (I’m usually super level headed, not crazy hormonal, and pretty confident in my awesomeness these days, but today was…off).

I told him that it wasn’t fair that I worked so hard for so long, and I STILL can’t shop at a normal store.  I shouldn’t have to go to a specialty bra shop.  I should just be able to walk in and shop off the rack. But I can’t.  The sad thing is that even though I measure at a 34DDD at VS or a 32FF at Ann’s Bra Shop, my chest looks small.  My husband says so. My co-workers say so.  I just don’t understand.  I continued to cry and tell him that I was ugly. Fat.  Deformed.  It was a regular hatefest.

While I sobbed and whined about how disgusting I felt and how it just wasn’t fair…boo hoo…what I think I was really saying was I can’t believe I ate all that, why didn’t I run more this week, why didn’t I log my food, how could I have worked so hard for so long, just to let her come back again.  

I had my binge.  I had my cry.  I had my feel-sorry-for-myself moment.  Tomorrow is a new day, and it’s time to pick up the pieces and move on.  I am NOT ugly. I am NOT deformed. I am most certainly NOT fat.  I had a moment…and that’s all.  An ugly moment, and it’s over now.

This is who I really am:

Happy, healthy, beautiful momma!

Happy, healthy, beautiful momma!

I’m gorgeous.  I’m strong.  I’m happy and healthy.  I ran 12 freaking miles last weekend, and I’m running 13 point freaking 1 miles next weekend.  I’m a rockstar…to myself…to my husband…to my kids…to others around me!

In fact, an old acquaintance reached out to me via facebook just yesterday.  She had lap band surgery 2 years ago.  It failed. She recently had it drained and is looking into a healthier lifestyle…and contacted….ME!  Said I was an inspiration.  Wow, okay.  Me?  Wow.

My son told me on Friday that I was “kinda like a teen”.  I asked how, and he said “because teens are just a little bit smaller than a real adult, and usually in really good fit (shape/fitness).”  I look good, I feel good, and I love that people notice.  I had a moment of weakness….don’t we all…and now that moment is over, and I will be my strong, courageous, and inspirational self again tomorrow morning!

I can’t wait to be me!  See ya on the flip side!

Back in the Saddle Again

 

Okay, so I’m mostly only posting this so I don’t eat the rest of the brownies that my daughter made…that my husband was supposed to take to work today so his wife wouldn’t eat them.  If I tell you all how well I’ve done today, I will feel too guilty to eat said pan of brownies.  I hope.

I did great with my food choices today, and I kept my carb intake to a minimum.  Go me!   Tonight, I have a sweet tooth (only because there is 1/2 a pan of brownies begging me to devour them!), so to stave it off, I ate some frozen blueberries. Yum!  They were good, but now I have my eye on the strawberries!

I ran 6.2 miles today.  I did three of them on the treadmill, changed the laundry around, and ran the rest outside.  It’s funny how miserable I am on the treadmill, but when I get outside I’m free!

On the treadmill, all I could think about was watching the lap graphic slowly grow into a quarter mile circle or how sweaty I was or how the pull up rings in my basement are out of alignment with the basement door, and my OCD self just couldn’t handle its askew-ed-ness.  

Once outside, my mind was free. I felt so good.  I was able to envision my half marathon.  I thought about my family cheering me on.  I even began dreaming of a full marathon.  I’m not gonna lie…I’ve had my eye on the Go! St. Louis Marathon in April 2015 almost as long as I’ve had my eye on the half marathon for which I’ve been training most of the summer.

My 9 year old daughter signed up for an after school fitness club, and they will be running one mile of that marathon.  How cool would it be to run alongside my daughter and her classmates for 5,280 feet.  It made me tear up as a ran my way back to the hizzy.  I even came up with clever sign ideas for my family to hold.  Signs I would no doubt have to make myself!

 

marathon-sign-2010-cropped

 

I truly love running outside.  It makes me happy, and happiness is what I’m all about these days.

 

Happy running, folks.  Get out there and own it!

 

 

Half Marathon Training Week 5, Day 3

 

During the week on my shorter runs, and by the way, I NEVER dreamed I’d refer to four miles as a “shorter run”, I have been doing speedwork.  I’m a slow-as-molasses kinda gal, so I thought I’d try to step it up for my half in October.

 

Today was a crosstraining or 2 mile run day.  I chose the run.  It’s weird how I only feel like I’ve worked out after a run these days.  I did what I’m guessing was a tempo run.  I ran much faster than I normally would.  When I say “faster”, please remember that it’s all relative, baby!  I averaged 10:50 per mile, much faster than my comfy ol’ 12 minute jogs.  I ate and hydrated well today, but this run was not enjoyable.  I didn’t feel like I had much energy, so it made my worry what my four miles will bring tomorrow.  Since I pushed speed on yesterday’s four miler and today’s two miler, I think I’ll be “lazy” and jog an easy 12 minute mile tomorrow.  Heck, I’m just happy I can run at all!  Never, ever in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that I would absolutely LOVE running.

 

One other thing I’m mildly concerned about is my left heel.  I broke some bones and hurt the tendon/ligament a few years ago.  It’s been aching lately, so I’ve been on the hunt for my ankle brace in the hopes that that will shut it up.  I’ve looked everywhere!  It’s not in my bed, or in the fridge…sooooooo….

 

Anyway, tomorrow’s a four miler and strength training.  I’m hoping I have more energy by slowing down my run.  Looking forward to seeing what I can do with six miles on Sunday!

 

Happy running!