Monday, December 27, 2010

Bad idea of the day...

Half marathon training began this morning.   That means I have to actually run on weekdays again.  I decided that since hubby is home for another week, I would go a bit later and take the girl dog with us.  Cali is a lab basset-corgi cross.  She has hyper terrier energy in a short but labby package.  I figured she'd be happy running at my happy pace.  Boy, I could not have been more wrong.

Turns out her happy pace is about 3 mins faster a kilometre than mine is.  By the end of 3 blocks, I was huffing and puffing and being hauled along much too fast on the icy streets of Langdon.   I had worn my traction guards for the first time as well and HATED THEM!   I decided to turn around and take Cali home and throw the guards in the basket by the door while I was there. 

I headed out again as soon as I had caught my breath and had a lovely little run around town.  It is chinooking here (for those of you who aren't from here and don't know what a chinook is - think warm winds coming over the mountains and making winter much more pleasant as long as the pressure changes don't give you migraines).   So running in 0*C was quite nice and I was pleasantly surprised to see how much of the public pathway is actually being shoveled this winter.   I thought I was going to be stuck on the unshoveled sidewalks or running up the middle of the street but, for now at least, that doesn't seem like it will be the case.

My Garmin tells me I burned 400 calories in the 4.61K I ran.   That makes me happy.  Not as happy as my scale telling me I am 4lbs lighter today than I was Christmas day, but still pretty happy.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

SCORE! New Running Shoes for MEEEEEEEE!

I'm so happy!  I just scored a new pair of running shoes for $30!   Anyone who knows me, knows that I am always trying to outfit my running gear in a really budget-friendly way (being a stay at home mom and trying to manage on one income makes me hyper-aware that $200 for running shoes will either mean I go without or that I wear one pair long long long after they should have been retired).  So I tend to check ebay all the time for shoes.  I'm lucky that I wear clown really big shoes so there is less competition when I find a deal on a brand new pair.  There are loads of shoes on there, though they may be a discontinued model, but they are still perfect for me :)  So far, since I started running, I haven't had to pay more than $35 for a pair of brand new Nikes (usually brings it to $50 with shipping).  Sure, I have to wait a week to get them, but the savings is worth the wait...and the cheapness means I can have a couple of pairs to rotate.

Christmas Hangover and living in reality

Ok - it's not what you think.  I didn't have a drop to drink this Christmas.  I am just feeling the after effects of too much sugar and salt.  It was a year ago that I weighed in and saw the reality of my post-baby slacking and, when I stood on the scale yesterday, I was suddenly up almost 8lbs from the week before!  I also took my progress pics since my food journal runs out today and I look like I am HUGE with a giant gut. I KNOW it isn't real.  I am likely retaining water from all of the salt and not enough water intake.   Add to that a bit of raging monthly hormones and the number and pictures are just wrong.   When I thought about it a minute or two, I decided that I am not counting this weeks weigh in or photo.  Next week, when I start my new journal with the new year, I will take fresh new pictures (Might be a good time to pick a better background too lol) and will go from the weight that day.  

As for this week, it's time to start some half marathon training.  It will be my first weekday run since San Fran and I am looking forward to getting out there.   My brain needs a good cleaning and nothing does that like a quick 5K :)  I'm also looking forward to running in the mountains this week when we are in Canmore to meet up with my family for a little holiday get together.   Since we'll have onsite babysitting, I think my hubby is looking forward to going for a run with me - his first since he started :)  It'll be nice to have the company.  

Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Christmas!

I just wanted to write a quick note to wish you all a very happy Christmas.  I am eating far too much and enjoying the heck out of it. :)  No fear, though - on Monday I ramp it up and start getting serious about training and eating right again.   Even though I am loving the fancy foods now...I am really looking forward to better things :)

Hope you are enjoying all of your special holiday foods too!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Let the Half Training Begin

Ok - here is the training plan that I am following to prepare for my half at the end of March.   I wanted a 12 or 13 week program so have modified the 12 wk Novice plan on www.halhigdon.com

 
Week
Mon
Tue
Wed
Thu
Fri
Sat
Sun
1
(Dec 27-Jan2)
5K run Cross train 40 mins 5K run
Cross train 40 mins
5K Run (Resolution Run)
Rest
6.5K Run
2
(Jan 3-9)
Cross train 40 mins
5K run
Cross train 40 mins
5K run
Cross train 40 mins
6.5K run
Rest
3
(Jan 10-16)
Cross train 40 mins
5.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
5.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
8K run
Rest
4
(Jan 17-23)
Cross train 40 mins
5.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
5.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
8K run
Rest
5
(Jan 24-30)
Cross train 40 mins
6.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
6.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
10K run
Rest
6
(Jan 31- Feb 6)
Cross train 40 mins
6.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
6.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
5K run
Rest
7
(Feb 7-13)
Cross train 40 mins
7K run
Cross train 40 mins
7K run
Cross train 40 mins
11K run
Rest
8
(Feb 14-20)
Cross train 40 mins
7K run
Cross train 40 mins
7K run
Cross train 40 mins
13K run
Rest
9
(Feb 21-27)
Cross train 40 mins
8Krun
Cross train 40 mins
8Krun
Cross train 40 mins
10K run
Rest
10
(Feb 28-Mar 6)
Cross train 40 mins
8K run
Cross train 40 mins
8K run
Cross train 40 mins
14.5K run
Rest
11
(Mar 7-13)
Cross train 40 mins
8K run
Cross train 40 mins
8K run
Cross train 40 mins
16K run
Rest
12
(Mar 14-20)
Cross train 40 mins
5K run
Cross train 40 mins
5K run
Cross train 40 mins
10K run
Rest
13
(Mar 21-27)
Cross train 40 mins
6.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
3.5K run
Cross train 40 mins
Half Marathon
Rest



Now I just have to figure out some sort of eating plan to go along with it so I can start blasting off the last 25lbs while I do this.  Oh - and I decided that this half is just to keep me motivated to run through the winter.   So I will not be doing speed or hills (besides - the ice over the winter would make both borderline dangerous).  I am going into this with no time goal.  My goal is to finish and to run consistently throughout the entire race.

Oy with the poodles already...

Ok...I was going to write "holidays" up there, but decided on a gem from Gilmore Girls instead...My December goals are not going great.   I've been working out 5-6 days a week, but beyond that everything else has gone all to hell.  The holiday treats have become something to do throughout the day - either baking them or eating them.   If I am into the treats, my water consumption seems to fail and I am dehydrated most of the time now.   So, with a little over a week to go on this month, I am aiming to just keep up the workouts and try my best with the water.  I think a little weight gain is inevitable but I can hopefully keep it low and then when the motivation of the new year kicks in, I can concentrate on blasting it off.

It's hard to admit that I have no willpower.  I'm usually a pretty resolute gal and this has been really hard.  I feel like I am constantly failing.  So, in an effort to save my sanity and happiness, I am just going to let myself have a week or two of bad eating but I promise I will be back on the diet wagon Jan 1.

In other news...my half marathon training plan starts next week.  I need to type up my schedule, but I will post it as soon as I do so you can see what I'll be up to.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Very Vegetarian Christmas

Let me just come right out and say it…it's not about the turkey.   Not in our house, anyway.   We are a house full of vegetarians and while we've tried the Tofurky thing a few times, it's quite disgusting.  And then there is the joy of being the only vegetarians while visiting family.  I have to give our families A LOT of credit here…they have tried to make us special vegetarian foods so we don't feel left out, but often the results are not what we could consider something we'd want to eat for our "special" holiday meal.  After all, how many people want their special meals to be someone elses experiment?  It would really just be much easier if we could just bring our own tried and tested meals with us and have no one be offended.

A few years ago, we decided to try something new.  Instead of trying to fit our vegetarian lifestyle into the turkey-centric mindset of the masses, we decided to forge our own path.  And, if I should say so myself, it's a pretty good path and has given us a pretty neat tradition.   Every year, we choose a different country and prepare special vegetarian foods from that country/culture.   The beauty of the tradition is that the country doesn't even have to be real.  One year we did a middle-earth Christmas - hobbit style.  Lemme tell ya, by Elevenses, we were STUFFED!  Lots of mushrooms that year and a whole day spent watching the extended versions of the Lord of the Rings movies.   So much fun.

This year, we haven't chosen our country yet, but I am sure it will be fabulous.   From researching the foods, sourcing recipes and shopping for unique ingredients - it is sure to be an adventure.  Something to remember for years to come.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Week 3 Check In

I'm not so great at the blog upkeep thing.  I'm trying, though :)

Another pound down this week (surprising since the holiday chocolates seem to suddenly be appearing in the house and family celebrations have started).  I haven't done the measuring yet but I am probably down another inch or two.

The pushups are starting to work...I noticed some new definition in my arms this week.  GOOD - it makes it worth the pain of doing the program.   I am now up to 88 pushups.   As for the plank challenge I issued myself, I can now hold one for 1:36.  Amazing, considering only a couple of weeks ago I could barely hold one for 30 seconds.   I had to switch the planks to the opposite days of when I do pushups...my body is just toast after I do them and it was feeling really had to hold the plank.

If I stick my fingers in my ears and yell "la la la la la" then perhaps I can drown out the metal chastising I've been giving myself for my rotten eating all week.   I've pretty much negated my workouts in overages.   But I still lost a pound so I am doing ok.  I am still on track to be down to my pre-San Fran weight by xmas.  I just have to be more careful and concentrate on eating more real food instead of holiday crap.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

My Story

Ok - I realize that many of my run posts have been centered on my diet struggles.  I just noticed that I haven't really touched on what 2010 has been for me.   In January 2010, I weighed in at my heaviest, non-pregnancy weight ever.  208lbs.  On my 5'9" frame, I didn't look like what people typically think of as FAT, but fat I most certainly was.  I had two, 7 month old babies and had given myself a bit too much permission to eat freely while I was breastfeeding (well, I was technically exclusively pumping but the principle is the same on the mommy-front).   As a result, the pounds kept packing on. 

When I stood on the scale on Christmas day 2009, I cried.  It was time to change, but I had no clue how.  I had been through the yo-yo cycle a hundred times in the last 10 years and I knew it was time for a lifestyle change.   The motivation to get exercising came on Boxing Day, when I wandered into Walmart and saw all 4 seasons of Felicity on DVD for ridiculously cheap.  I had been wanting them for years and they had always been super expensive.  I decided that I would buy them, but I was only allowed to watch them if I was on my stationary bike and the pedals were moving.   It was exactly the motivation I needed.

2010 started with me sitting on the bike and watching one episode a day.  It quickly became the favourite part of my day.  Meanwhile, I was also reading "Secrets of a Former Fat Girl" by Lisa Delaney and liked the sound of it.  I wanted to be a "Former Fat Girl", but I didn't want to follow any prescribed diet plan.  From my history, I knew that if I strapped my ovo-lacto vegetarian self into any particular diet plan, I was doomed to fail.  Instead, I decided that I would give myself an allowance.  While I was providing milk to my babies - I would eat in the neighbourhood of 2000 calories a day.   I figured this would give my body enough to nourish itself and the twinners.   Using my DietMinder journal, I wrote everything down.  Diet, workouts, water intake, vitamins.  If it went into me, it was written down.   It wasn't long before the weight started to melt off.

Late in January, a dear friend of mine told me that she had been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin Lymphoma.   Anna was a marathoner and had been trying to get me to run for years, but I had the usual excuses (bad knees, asthma etc etc) so i managed to avoid it at all costs.  That all changed when she told me her diagnosis.  The first thought through my head was "I need to find a run for lymphoma and do it".  When I told my hubby, he said "But you're not a runner" and my response was "I guess I'm gonna become one". 

I spent the next month looking for lymphoma runs and, finally, stumbled upon Team in Training.  The icing on the cake was that one of the events they offered was Nike Women's.  This was a race Anna had done in 2007 and it felt like the perfect fit for me.   I needed to learn to run before I could register for it, though.  So, in Late February, I started Couch-to-5k (a learn to run program that I had read a lot about).  It was 8 weeks long, but promised that I would be a runner when it finished, as long as I trusted the program.  On May 8, 2010, I started training with Team in Training and on May 9, I ran my first 5K - the mothers day run in Calgary.   By this point, I was 30lbs lighter than I had been when the year began. 

I was no longer breastfeeding and my weight had plateaued so I re-evaluated my calorie allowance and decided to drop it down to in the neighbourhood of 1500 calories.  That gave me enough energy to keep going with my half marathon training and with chasing after two - 1 year olds.   Almost instantly, I lost another 10lbs! 

Ok - here's some picture proof...I really wish I'd had a better backdrop but this still works:


The rest of my summer consisted of another 5K, two 10Ks and wrapped up in October with my TNT half marathon in San Francisco.   Just for kicks, I did another half in November with a team mate (and another 5K in December with yet another on the calendar for the end of the month).   My weight went up after returning from San Fran because I totally slacked off.   But now I am back on the wagon.  I only want to lose another 23lbs and I am giving myself until the start of April to do so.   I am back on the bike every morning (this time, I'm watching "Sliders" - brings back my college days of sitting in my dorm room, watching on an 8inch B&W TV). 

I have also decided that if I am going to look good in a swimsuit in April, as a lounge on the beach in Mexico, I am going to need to do some strength training.  Usually, I am totally into fitness videos for my strength training, but I really couldn't be bothered so I started the 100 pushups program and am working on improving areas I am weak.  I figure right now I can only do pushups using a stability ball...so I will start by doing the program that way.  Then I will do it again, graduating to knee pushups.  THEN, I will do it AGAIN but as a big girl - up on my toes.  Taking 18 weeks to do it will hopefully help me do something I've never been able to do before.   A good goal to work towards.

Nowadays, I am finding inspiration in unlikely places.   I discovered BenDoesLife and I love his philosophy of "Doing Life".   I have also taken to following the blogs and twitter feeds of other running moms.   The Run Like a Mother book has helped me to put my running into perspective and to help me know that I am not alone out there with my time constraints and my wanting to better myself to make me a better mom for my kids.

As for what the future holds, who knows.  All I do know is that my kids deserve to grow up with a mommy who is fit and energetic.  I don't want them to have a fat mom.   I know that the things i am doing right now to better myself and my health with be the things that they grow up knowing and it will make life so much easier on them when they grow up.  Maybe I can help them avoid being fat girls themselves.  Guess only time will tell.

Diet Stupid

Today is the day I stop being "diet stupid".  

It's a classic scenario in CoriWorld.   I start the day strong with an intense workout and then a really healthy breakfast that balances everything I need to have balanced.   Lunch starts to show a little fraying around the edges as I make myself something good and healthy and then I nibble at whatever I am making the girlies.  Usually not alot of nibbling, but a piece of rotini here or a hunk of cheese there.   Usually so small that I fool myself into believing that it doesn't need to be written down because I probably wore it off serving lunch.   When I sit down to watch my stupid soap TV show in the afternoon, I usually have a little nibbly snack and, if we don't have junk food in the house, it is usually a healthy one (I am still pretty good about measuring and recording the junk food, though).  Dinner has potential to be either really good or really bad.  Watching the portions my hubby takes usually makes me want more and I usually deny myself hold back so I can have an evening snack while watching TV.

This is where it all falls apart.  The lights go down and the willpower makes it an early night and leaves me defenseless against the pantry.   The pantry light comes on (automatically, I swear) and the door waves me inside.   Next thing I know, I'm climbing the shelves to see what goodies might be laying in wait at the back of the top shelf (our designated "junk" shelf). Because I know I'm a "to the bottom of the bag" snacker -  I start off okay, measuring out exactly what the package says is a serving.  And then the bag or box gets a little unintentional bump and a few more pieces fall into the bowl.   And then I eat.   And,since that rarely satisfies what I want...and I've been so good all day...I go back for another handful.   And another 200-500 calories makes its way onto my food list for the day.

When I take the time to figure out what I've done and do the math - my morning workout usually cancels out more than my evening diet stupidity.  I can justify it that way until Sunday, when I step on the scale and the number hasn't budged.   I've worked out all week and eaten relatively healthy, but that little slice of diet stupidity I have in the evening has kept me standing still for another week.  

So, today, the diet stupidity stops.   Even if I need to only eat pre-packaged, calorie restricted snackies, I will keep my evening chow-fests to no more than 200 calories.   It gives me a little wiggle room and should help me stay on track as long as I have an allowance.  

Here's hoping.    So, tell me - what is your diet stupidity?  The thing you recognize as hurting your efforts but you do it anyway....

Sunday, December 5, 2010

2nd week - not so great

Well, week 2 is where I usually get sloppy and this one was no exception.  I did GREAT on the workout front.  5 days on the bike and then a run on the 6th.   But holiday goodies and cold winter nights did in my good intentions for eating well.   Luckily, the workouts seem to have balanced out my dietary indiscretions and I stayed the same for the week weight wise (lost 1.5 inches, apparently).  An up note for the diet crap...I did write everything down.  So at least I wasn't pretending to be in denial about what I was doing LOL.  

Now the junk food is out of the house so I can concentrate on being good again.   Week 3, I get the eating back on track.  If I can stick to my calorie allowance and keep up the workouts...I should see a big loss by the end of next week.  Here's hoping.

Off to bed now.  I have a super early appointment in the morning so I need to get up extra early to get that workout in.  As my little Doodle would say "Nuh-Nite"

Santa Shuffle - Dec 4/10

The day dawned super cold (like -20*C cold), though it warmed up to about -10 by the time the race started.   I had planned out my super cute ensemble for the fun run and then, at the last moment, decided to add a layer (it ended up being overkill).

This was the original plan:
  • My arm warmers under my Old Navy Running Shirt
  • red Mountain Equipment Co-op t-shirt over top
  • MEC leggings
  • Moving Comfort wrap skirt
  • and then the holiday touches of red cable knit leg warmers, santa hat, and my houndstooth scarf.  
  • red fleece gloves

When the thermometer seemed so sold, I decided to kill the arm warmers and wear my Avia running jacket under the t-shirt - a move I lived to regret because I got very steamy hot fairly quickly.

Here's me and J right before the race, dressed all super cute :)


We took it at a pretty easy pace - it was a family fun run so there were tons of kiddos there and A LOT of people just meandering.   The route ran out of Eau Claire Market and then along 3rd ave to connect with the running path again about a block west.   Then out to 14th street, across the bridge and back again - finishing up by running across Princes Island and then back to the Market.  

I did end up taking walk breaks at the half way point and then just before the finish.   I think I am a cold weather cramper.   I've been getting really bad cramps at my normal pace lately and they worsen when I get up to race pace.  This was disappointing, because I know that J and I ran the first 8K of our half, just 3 weeks ago, at much faster than we went yesterday.  Of course, we weren't battling ice.

In the end, we finished in 34:37 by my Garmin. Defintiely not my fastest 5K ever, but given the fact that it was really icy and they we were caught behind a delivery truck on the path on the island (!!!) I think we did great.  And it was a lot of fun to see the different costumes people were wearing and the general festiveness in the air.

The things I learned:

    •    Santa hats just don't breathe!  Must buy a wicking santa hat if I plan to do these in future years.
    •    To just trust my instincts on what to wear.  I would have been quite comfortable in my original planned outfit
    •    I'm not sure I like the 5K distance except for short training runs
    •    I should learn to enjoy a 5K for the fun run aspect of it.  If it isn't timed, I shouldn't sweat it.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

NaNoEdMo

I've been trying to think of a plan of attack for editing my NaNo novel.   Write now I am so burnt out from writing it so quickly that I can't even begin to focus on making it something better than the flaming ball of crap it is (I'm reading it right now - I have no disillusions). 

As though the great void of the internet heard my pleas for help, I found out about National Novel Editing Month (NaNoEdMo) today.  NaNoEdMo falls in the month of March and provides the same kind of structure as NaNoWriMo, but from an editing standpoint.   Even though March 2011 is going ot be insane around here (I run another Half Marathon AND I need to prepare for our trip to Mexico) I think it'll all work out and bring me a little further along in turning out a decent novel.   Guess we'll see, but I'll never know if I don't try.  Since I took the time to write the novel, I don't want to see it live in a dark computer folder for the rest of eternity.  I owe it to both it and myself to see what it can become :)

December Goals

Well, here we are - it's already December.  Where did this year go?   December is usually the month I let everything go to hell with my eating and exercising (actually, I'm not sure I've ever made it to December with exercising before so I am already ahead there). In an effort to keep myself on the wagon, I am going to set some monthly goals going forward and see if I can't stay on track with them.

1) Work out at least 5 days a week, preferably 6
I am going to just stick to my biking and running and wrapping up the 100 pushups program and continuing with my mini-goal of being able to hold a plank for 3 mins.

2) Keep my food journal up to date

If I don't write it down, I will gain. With only 118 days til Mexico, I can't afford to gain

3) Drink more water.  and then drink some more.
In the winter, I am so bad at keeping myself hydrated.  So I am going to aim for 4 full bottles a day (I have a large water bottle I carry with me everywhere)

4) Don't sweat the small stuff
It's the holidays and dealing with everything that entails is pretty stressful.  I am determined to NOT get stressed out this year and to just enjoy it. 

That should be enough to get me through the month.   Next month, I guess it'll be time to look at new years resolutions and to start training for my Half in March!