Posts from the ‘goals’ Category

It’s been a long time…

….but it’s finally happened……

My body fat percentage has fallen below 30%.  Now granted, if you read Rita’s blog, you’ll have noticed a post about body fat percentage scales but today…. I say to that “pffffft”.

From nearly moment one, when Ms. Size Zero at Curves said my body fat percentage read 42, I knew I wanted to have my body fat in the 20’s.  It’s been a long, slow process but I’m at 29.4% as of my weigh-in this morning.

So… please allow me to show ya a lil somethin-somethin….

You see that?  You see that right there?

Moderately Lean.

I totally love the sound of that.

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I Scream… You Scream….We All…Say Goodbye?

I knew this day would come.

My love affair with ice cream has lasted a long time.  My first day at Curves, when asked what food I couldn’t live without… my answer, immediate and decisive was “ice cream.”

And the look on Ms. Size Zero’s face when she peered over her chart at me said “Hmm I hope you don’t wonder why you’re overweight.”

Ice cream and I go way back.  I remember college pity parties spent with a friend and a couple of pints of Ben & Jerry’s.  I remember celebrating fantastic events with blizzards or sundaes from Dairy Queen.

What’s not to like about ice cream?  It’s been so controlled during my diet.  My 150 calories of ice cream a day… the thing I claimed “kept me sane” and on the straight and narrow.  I eat my ice cream every day and then I don’t have the urge to binge on it.  (You know, like I did after Atkins when all I wanted in the world were some sugary goodness carbs?)

Only… ice cream is currently betraying me.  My little cone after dinner?  My 150 calories of super yummy goodness?  It’s begun to turn on me.  What once satiated my need for the creamy goodness now causes something a bit more sinister to occur.  Lately, I’ve been having my ice cream and then feeling something like this: omgomgIwantmore!  MORE!  Iwantanother!  Gimme Another!  I need more!  I deserve more!  I. Must. Have. More!

And, you see, I’ve given in a couple of times.  And, well, I know that’s not right.  And so, I’m beginning to wonder if maybe my ice cream isn’t triggering some sort of over-eating mechanism inside of me.  Or perhaps it’s making me crave stupid stuff (like more ice cream).

I don’t know precisely what it is.

I just know it’s got to stop.

And so I’m saying it right now… the words I never thought I’d utter (willingly, anyway).

I think I’m going to try to take a month off ice cream.

I just can’t justify eating something which makes me go so crazy.  There are alternatives.  I’ve got mango sorbet which makes me squeal with delight and which I seem to have self control around.  There’s chocolate, of which I have gobs in my freezer and seem to go days without thinking of touching.

And then of course, there’s the notion of having no sweets after dinner and breaking that stupid habit.

Whatever the case, there are alternatives and I know it.

I feel a bit like I did when I decided to quit smoking.  Something about it was making me feel dissatisfied and so I went with the feeling and maneuvered myself into quitting.  I may be far more addicted to ice cream than I ever was to cigarettes, but I think the concept is the same.  I need to run with this feeling of “woah, this isn’t right and I should do something about it” while I still can.

Besides, it’s just a month.  It’s not forever.  It’s a month.  If after a month I decide to eat ice cream again, that’s fine.  Hopefully I’ll be a less frequent ice cream connoisseur but if it’s daily again, well I hope I’ll at least have freed myself of the crazy craving for more which suddenly seems to be coming with it.

I can do this.

I can do this.

I can do this.

I can do this.

Screw you ice cream!

I suspect you’ll be seeing this a lot…

It’s my latest read.

My latest quest to feel as though I fit in with this thing called running.

Oh yes, I’ll admit to having doubts.  I even voice them occasionally (read: often) on this blog.  I whine sometimes about how slow I am.  I whine about how fast others are.  Sometimes I remember to mention how much I’m loving the running.

And I really am loving it.  I swear.

Days when I run I find myself excited about it.  I don’t necessarily look forward to it all day long, but when I do think about it, it’s not with dread… it’s with a small smile on my face.

Thing is though, I’m not actually doing much in the line of training to improve.  I’m really just treading water.  And I’ve come to the conclusion lately that what I really want to do is run a marathon some day.

This book?  This book seems to hate the term some day.  I’ve got a schedule in my head though.  This year was the year of the 5k.  Next year will be the year of the 10k.  Then the year of the half.  Then the full.  I’ve got it all planned out, see?

I’m not sure this book will change that…. but it might.  What I’m really looking for here is to feel a part of something.  I’ve been doing all this running and so far it’s been mostly a solitary thing (you know, aside from that Reagan Run 5k)… and while this isn’t bad necessarily… It does make me wish for a group at times.  You know, camaraderie  and friendship and a good ol’ pat on the back and a heckovajob brownie.  Or at least something.

I’m tired of feeling ashamed of my speed, but I still am.  I’m tired of seeming to make no improvements, but I might be and just won’t know it.  I’m just tired of feeling like the running misfit.

So anyway, this book is already speaking to me.  Page 3 and it’s already offering me hope and I do desperately need some hope that I won’t always be a slow 3-miler.

“It doesn’t matter where you’re coming from.  It doesn’t matter how un-divine your running skills are.  It doesn’t matter how low you feel you rank among the ranks of mortals.  You can and will become a long-distance athlete.  We promise.  We’ve seen it happen.  We’ve seen mortals of every shape and size, of every type of fitness background, of every sort of lifestyle cross the marathon finish line.
You can be one of them.”

You know, sometimes you just need to hear someone say it.

I am Shrinking Girl (sometimes Incredible, often times a mere mortal).

The idea of anyone referring to me as an athlete, let alone a long distance one makes me giggle.  I do not feel like an athlete.  I have never been an athlete.  No one in the past would have ever called me an athlete.

I always sorta liked how the word looked though and I wouldn’t mind being one… and so I’m glad it doesn’t matter what size or shape I am (size: getting smaller all the time,  shape: relatively humanoid).  I’m glad my fitness background doesn’t matter (I’ve been exercising for a year now, does that make me a novice?).  I’m glad my lifestyle doesn’t matter either (computer junkies can run marathons too??).

So, as the post title suggest… you might be hearing a lot about this book in the near future. Maybe it’ll strike a chord with one of you as well.

Sad News

Well folks, it’s time for me to put on my sad face and tell you some news.

I won’t be participating in a duathlon this year.

My back injury from February has made any bike ride over 7-10 miles rather unpleasant.  Actually.  Rather painful.

When I first noticed the problem, I scaled back my training to build up mileage on the bike a bit more slowly thinking perhaps I just went too quickly.  I mean, the bike and I are old friends and jumping in seemed to be the thing to do.

Unfortunately, after scaling back the bike and building up mileage very slowly, I’m still having the same issue.  It starts in at about mile 4, it’s painful by mile 7 and by mile 10 I’m heading for home ASAP.

I talked to my chiropractor and he suggested moving the handle bars.  I did that.  I move them again.  I moved them yet again.

No improvement.

Soooo, I talked it over with my sister and she reminded me to listen to my body.  And, after trying one more handle bar adjustment yesterday I’m sad to say my back just isn’t well enough to handle running AND biking… and while running alone hasn’t made my back hurt in months, I suspect there’s only so much an injured spot can take before it’s fully recovered.

So yeah.  Not this year.  Possibly next year.

I’ve cried a bit because I REALLY wanted this.  Like, really really really wanted this and having worked at it for this long already… well, I’m pretty disappointed.  I also feel as though I’ve let my sister down and that hurts quite a bit too.

Sucky.

Monday Monday

This morning I had the best Monday run I can ever remember having.

Mondays, typically, are days when I perform my worst.  It seems every Monday morning I head out, struggle through the first two miles of my run and wimp out somewhere on the third mile (back in 5k training).  There were days when I didn’t even make two miles on Monday but would finish 3 miles on Wednesday (through some miracle).

Today, I felt strong.  I really wish I had a watch or something to keep track of how much time I’m taking to run because I’m pretty sure I went faster than usual today.  I also felt superb at the end of my run, went into the bike portion of today’s workout with gusto and generally I feel fantastic.  Don’t get me wrong – my muscles are tired and I didn’t do any more than I had planned on doing…. but I really felt strong today.  It’s definitely a cool feeling and one I could get used to.

Some of the thoughts I had during my run today centered around what’s going to happen AFTER my duathlon in September.  School will be in session so I’ll be back at work (bummer).  I imagine I’ll be relieved to cut back on the length of my workouts a bit due to time constraints, but other than that….. are you ready for this???….. other than that, I think I’ll miss this crazy must-train attitude I’ve had all summer long.  There’s been such an evolution in my exercise habits and mentality and I’m really beginning to enjoy it.

Lucky for me, I can look forward to next season.  Maybe after a winter of focusing more on strength training, perhaps one last 5k on Thanksgiving Day (who can resist a 5k called the Turkey Trot – seriously) maybe I’ll emerge for another round of 5k runs, perhaps another duathlon, and who knows…. maybe even some other crazy adventure I throw into the mix like a 10k.  And while there is a serious urge for me to “get really good at the 5k runs” before moving on to the 10k, I honestly think striving for that 10k is HOW I’ll get really good at those 5ks.

I’m not looking to become a seriously competitive person by any means, I’m just looking to become a person who, most of the time, feels as strong as I did this morning.

Naturally, I pick the worst one first (and other stuff)

Behold:  My first salad out of my new book of salads!

I don’t know if words can properly express how yummy this was.  It’s called something like Warm Fingerling Potato Salad… I’ve nicknamed it Sinfully Good Salad.

It has homemade croutons (yes), warm potatoes and bacon on a bed of field greens all topped with a homemade garlic vinaigrette (thank you spell check, I’ll have to learn to spell that word for real one day).  I’ll admit I had my doubts about the vinaigrette, it contained mustard of which I am not a fan – but then I tasted it and OMG…. soooo yummy.  The only other dubious part of this recipe was the making of the croutons.  The recipe called for 8 oz of baguette in 3 Tbs of olive oil.  I couldn’t.  I absolutely couldn’t do it.  I left a bit of oil in the pan and thought about toasting them next time.  I also added some of the Garlic and White Wine seasoning to the croutons (thank you Melting Pot!) and they turned out oh-so-yummy!

I gobbled this down.  When I say gobble, I mean I couldn’t get it in my mouth fast enough.  Seriously.

As the title of the post says, I’m almost certain this is one of the less-healthy salads in the book (um… bacon… um…and I used real bacon too), but it was super super yummy!

Yesterday was the first day I rode my bike immediately after running.  I can say this is definitely the order I prefer to do these two activities in.  I cannot imagine how hard it is to run after riding a bike – yikes!  I was able to crank out about 8 easy miles before having to head home to get ready for my allergist appointment.

This morning was my “big ride” for the week.  I’ve been falling a bit short of my mileage goals for the bike which doesn’t surprise me seeing as my legs are working more right now than ever before in my life and I haven’t wanted to try to do too much too quickly.  Last week I could feel my legs weren’t up to anything much by Saturday and so I haven’t actually gone out in the country to ride my bike.  I’ve stuck to riding around my subdivision, around the bike path, or to the next town (which is like 2.5 miles away) and back.  It’s been pretty boring and while there are a few smaller hills, there isn’t anything which is too big of a challenge.

Today I set out to conquer some hills – some serious hills.  Venture too far out of town around here and there are some colossal hills to contend with – and not just one, one after another after another.  My goal for today was to complete 12-15 miles but to make them hilly miles.  I did 14.5 miles and took a loop I knew to be ridiculously hilly.  It took me an hour and twenty minutes but I’m not sure of my actual average speed because I spent a good 5-10 minutes messing with my saddle bag (apparently my ass is so big it weighs my bike seat down enough so it drags on the tire and makes an awful noise).  I had to move it to 3 locations before I found one which would work for right now.  I’ve got a fix in mind for mounting it to the seat but it’s not like I had the necessary items to do that out on the road.   I also did stop a few times to take drinks and cry a little on the inside about how my glutes were on FIRE.  (I mean, I like this feeling, don’t get me wrong.. it’s just that it’s also disconcerting to be biking down the road thinking “my ass is burning!”)

I will admit to being moving at ridiculously slow speeds at the top of some of these monster hills but – I didn’t walk up any.  I did get up to some really cool speeds going DOWN those hills which was pretty cool.  All in all I feel really good about my ride today and I figure if I train on hills like these – those “rolling hills” in the actual event will be child’s play.  Yes?  (Someone better say yes.  I am NOT going to be surprised by hills again!)

Cats, Curves and Training

I woke up this morning and noticed one of my cats, Moe, trying to bury my purse which I had left on the floor (which is highly unusual) last night.  Immediately I think “now why would my purse smell so badly Moe would want to bury it?”  And then I freeze right in my tracks.  One of my other cats (I only have 3, lay off) Tommy has litterbox issues.  Meaning:  It has to be very clean or Tommy finds elsewhere to go.  And I hadn’t cleaned the litterbox in a couple of days (ok ok, so I forgot and it’s a week).  I walk over, pick up  my purse, peer inside and UGH!  Yes, my cat peed in my purse.

On one hand, it’s a genius method for figuring out what of the crap you keep in your purse that you actually need.  (Read: What are you willing to fish out of the nasty cat pee and wash off?)

On a side note, I have officially washed money now…. by hand, not in a jeans pocket.

Aside from being a bad pet owner and cleaning out  my purse, this morning has been ripe with other things also.  First up?  Curves.  I haven’t been to Curves in nearly two weeks now.  Unless I want to do two workouts a day and put my legs under even more stress, there just isn’t time in my week for Curves.  I miss it just a little.  I mean, socializing is nice but I never really socialized during my workouts, I just listened.  Also, it’s nice not having to think about your work out… you can just zone out, do the circuit and before you know it… you’re done!  However, I don’t have time for that crap right now.  I’ve somehow become super serious about this Duathlon in September and I must train my little heart out for that.

My decision on Curves?  I’m going to talk to the owner (you remember Ms. Size Zero?) and tell her that if I can quit for a few months and come back in the winter without having to sign another one year contract when I do come back, then I’ll come back.  If not… it was nice knowing ya Curves.

Next decision:  My training schedule for the duathlon.  My sister has sent me her schedule and I think I”m going to do what she’s doing.  The main reason being that, by Saturday of last week, my legs were dying.  I think I need another rest day in the week.

Her schedule is progressive, meaning she’s adding time to her runs and her biking each week but the starting schedule is as follows:

Monday: 24 minute run/ 10  mile bike

Tuesday: off

Wednesday: 46 minute run

Thursday: off

Friday: 24 minute run/ 10 mile bike

Saturday or Sunday: 2o mile bike

It makes sense to me AND gives me some days off.  Now, on Tuesday and Thursday I’m highly likely to walk 2-3 miles and do an arm/chest/back workout but that means I’ll still be taking one day a week completely off exercise…. AND AND AND I will no longer be neglecting my upper body.

Sounds good, yes?