Setbacks

I’ve been a little MIA… what can I say. After Christmas and the New Year, getting back into the swing of “normal” daily life has been tough. You’d think with the slow down of job 2, I would feel better, have more energy. But instead, I feel like I’m dragging all the time! Anyway, onward and upward, right?

So today, I got an e-mail at work that had the following quote at the bottom.

Little things make the difference. Everyone is well prepared in the big things, but only the winners perfect the little things. ~Paul “Bear” Bryant

Yes, I’m spinning this back to running. You see, since I’ve added more runs to my week again, even though I’m keeping the mileage low, my foot has been bothering me again. I’m seriously at such a loss, I don’t even know how to proceed. I’ve been keeping up with strengthening and stretching. Foam rolling as much as possible. I don’t really want to take another break, but I also want to be sure I make it to and through my Half in June. I want to be back to where I was last August. Enjoying my runs… logging miles… without worry of pain or injury. I want to do this right.

I had decided after my knee fiasco I had to focus on strength training and cross training. I even joined the gym on New Year’s (haven’t been yet tho… shhhhh! maybe that’s part of my problem?). But seeing this quote just made me face a hard reality. Maybe I just haven’t been doing enough. Maybe I just need to do more.

So those little things… I’m going to work on perfecting those. I know I can get through a 9+ mile run. 13.2 isn’t that much farther, right? If I take the time to perfect those little things now, maybe, just maybe, I’ll be better off in the long run. Even if that means less time to focus on the actual run.

Wish me luck!

A New Year

A new year means new beginnings, right? I really don’t feel the need to establish 2016 as a year to start over, but more to continue what I’ve already started.

I started off on the right foot today. Figuratively and literally. I really wanted to find a race to run today, to establish myself in 2016. So I found a New Year’s 5k in the city, run at Lincoln Park Zoo. And off I went.


The path was pretty icy, so when I say there was a lot of fancy footwork involved, I’m not kidding! I really need to work on taking more pictures. Maybe that should be a goal for the new year. Anyway, because of the rough footing, it was also a little more taxing on the knee than I would like, but I finished. Running. And running strong! And I’m still standing! I only had to walk a couple times to let the knee chill, then it was fine. So I’m happy and I’ll take it!

I’d also like to add, Nike Pro rocks! When I was back in Iowa for Christmas, we went shopping and hit up the Nike Outlet store in Des Moines. I got a couple Nike Pro Hyperwarm base layer tops. They are so warm! I layered one under my Under Armor Cold Gear half-zip, and was perfectly comfortable. I wore one under a standard issue Nike running top the other day, and that kept me plenty warm as well. Now I’m on a mission for a pair of their tights!

My daughter and I joined a gym yesterday also. Have been thinking of that for a number of reasons. I kept telling myself I could just do body workouts at home, but I know I’m not doing all I should be doing. I know I’ll utilize the gym more and get more strength training in, which I really need. We joined a full service gym, complete with indoor pool, so she’s going to help me with swimming and maybe, just maybe, I’ll participate in a mini tri this year as well. We’ll see. It’s a long term goal, so if not this year, that’ll definitely be on the calendar next year at some point.

I realize we are only on day 1, but I feel great about where I am. Physically and mentally. I’m maintaining my focus, and staying positive. Life sure is good!

Be content with what you have. Rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you. ~Lao Tzu

Bring on 2016!

As I mentioned in recent posts, 2015 brought a lot of changes and awareness on a personal level. Most importantly, learning to accept myself, and accepting the fact that I had never truly grieved and moved beyond my past.

I’ve made a lot of decisions this past year. Accepting who I am today, but also realizing the need to keep pushing myself. To never settle. To always strive for the best.

As I started my workout this morning, the first song to come on Pandora was “I Lived” by One Republic. I’m not sure if I’ve heard the song before, but if I did I never paid attention to the lyrics.

Hope when you take that jump, you don’t fear the fall

Hope when the water rises, you built a wall

Hope when the crowd screams out, they’re screaming your name

Hope if everybody runs, you choose to stay
Hope that you fall in love, and it hurts so bad

The only way you can know is give it all you have

And I hope that you don’t suffer but take the pain

Hope when the moment comes, you’ll say
I, I did it all

I, I did it all

I owned every second that this world could give

I saw so many places, the things that I did

With every broken bone, I swear I lived
Hope that you spend your days, but they all add up

And when that sun goes down, hope you raise your cup

Oh, I wish that I could witness all your joy and all your pain

But until my moment comes, I’ll say

I, I did it all

I, I did it all

 

This. This is what I’m striving for. To live. Fully. To explore. To learn. To grow. And to love everything and every one along the way.

I’m not one for resolutions. But it’s that time of year, and I’ve come to the realization that there are things holding me back. So I have a goal for this week. I have so much “stuff” cluttering my life. Physical stuff. Things I’ve been holding onto because I can’t let it go. Stuff from my past. I used to enjoy scrapbooking, but I can’t bring myself to go through all the memories of the past. And holding onto all the “stuff”, the supplies, is just a reminder to me that I never finished what I started.

I promised to at least complete my daughters baby book, so I’m hoping with my week off work this week, I can finish what I started. Then the stuff goes. And all the things I’ve been holding onto to sell on eBay. It just needs to be gone. I’m looking forward to the freeing feeling so I can stop seeing the reminders. So I can focus on what’s important in my life now. Focusing on running. And school. And the goals I have set for myself. Without the weight of the past.

Progress and Goals

So today I made it through my run. For the first time since my Hot Chocolate fiasco. And can I just say, 50+ degrees in December? Yes, please!

It felt great. And I realized something yet again. As long as I take my time, and let my body go slow, I can do it. I tend to push my body too much too fast at the beginning because I feel no pain, but then it starts to hurt to the point of not being able to run at all. 

As long as I stick to the intervals, regardless of how fantastic I feel at the beginning, I can make it all the way through. Yes, my knee was hurting a little bit during the running intervals in the last half, but it’s minor enough to be able to run through it. Again I must be patient. But I will be back to myself soon enough. 

Which brings me to my goals. I think I’m to the point where taking more time off is going to do more harm than good. And mentally, I just need it. To be back out there. To get that joy back. 

I need to start getting back to my groove of running more regularly. I’m not sure twice a week is enough, so I’m aiming to run 3 times per week. I should be able to fit that in, even with my crazy work schedule. It will probably mean a couple lunch runs during the week, but it’s possible. And I’m ready!

Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go; they merely determine where you start. ~Nido Qubein

Thoughts on Weight Loss vs. Healthy Habits

I haven’t talked too much about my weight issues and weight loss journey here yet. I know I’ve mentioned it a few times but that’s about it. Eventually, I would like to write about it a little more in depth. But for now, I have this one thought.

I don’t think I’ve ever really discussed actual numbers with anyone. And now, I will throw it all out there for anyone and everyone to see. Talk about feeling vulnerable. At my highest high, I was over 250 lbs. Yes, I’m close to 5’10”, but that number should not have ever been reflected on my scale. I don’t know the exact number, after you reach a certain point you kind of stop paying attention to the exact figures. Out of embarrassment. Or maybe denial.  I can tell you the very first time I joined Weight Watchers, I was 241 lbs. and had lost approximately 10 on my own before I joined. (actually that wasn’t the first time I joined, but the first time I really committed to it)

When I was on that journey, I had an ultimate goal of 150 lbs. I plugged along and got down to about 165, give or take. I felt great! Once I got there, I had decided I was perfectly happy with myself and my weight at that point, that I decided I didn’t need to be 150. And I didn’t.

And that’s when I stopped trying. And that’s when I started gaining again. I tried getting back to Weight Watchers. I knew the program worked, if you worked with the program. But I wasn’t in it. My heart wasn’t there. I was spending money, going to meetings, just to step on their scale. But I wasn’t trying.

I had some ups and downs after that. Stress mostly. Ok, it was all stress. And anxiety. Not a recommended way to lose weight, by the way. And certainly not long term. At least I would hope your stress level isn’t such that it would be long term.

And this takes me to the beginning of this year. I had finally decided to grab the bull by the horns, so to speak. But it was different this time. Instead of focusing on eating whatever I want, within a set number of points, I focused on WHAT I was eating. I started focusing on the health and nutrition and everything I put in my body. I got back to running. And I was in it for the overall health and fitness. And I was in it for the long haul. And I was doing it for me.

I counted calories for just the first couple months until I got my bearings. I needed some sort of concrete goal to strive for, to get the ball rolling. I was looking at calories, while also focusing on what those calories were in. 250 calories of fish and salad instead of 250 calories of pizza. You get the idea. And I started avoiding those things that cause me problems, abdominal pain mostly. It’s so incredibly amazing how satisfied our bodies feel when we are putting in the right ingredients. I found myself not needing as much when I was eating just what I needed. I wasn’t even hungry. And it made all the difference.

Again, when I started, I set my goal at 165, since I had been there before, and I knew I would be perfectly happy and ok with that number. And it’s just a number anyway. Just one part of an overall equation. Health is about so much more than the number on the scale, but it gives a good guideline.

I accomplished that goal. I continued to eat healthy, and run. I was just continuing what I had started, and focused on making good choices every day. I wasn’t depriving myself of anything, just listening to my body. This morning, I stepped on the scale, and for the first time since I graduated High School, I saw 1-5-0.

Let me take you back a few years. I don’t know how I remember this, but I do. I guess it just goes to show how I’ve always been slightly obsessed with my weight. But all through high school I was 147 lbs. I don’t know why. But it seemed every year when we had to weigh in the Spring and Fall, I was 147. Maybe that’s just the number I remember because that’s where I was most, but that’s always stuck in my head. So I probably hit 150 shortly after graduation, and kept on going.

If you haven’t figured out yet the point of this post, I’ll spell it out. 🙂 Health is all encompassing. There is so much to it, and more than just a number on the scale. But the most important thing to remember, is to do the right things for your body. Eating healthy, and moving more, is what’s most important. Losing weight is great. But doing it just to aim for a number on the scale will often set you up for failure. It’s so much more important and successful if you enter with the mindset of being healthy. Make good choices, and do what your body needs. And your body will give you what you want.

lifestyle

What was I thinking?

That very thought just keeps running through my head.

I look at this:


And all I can think is, “What WAS I thinking?”

One month from today, I’ll be running that nice red line, God willing. And I do hope He’s willing! It’s not the biggest race I’ve been preparing for, but it’s the next hurdle I was hoping to jump, just to prove to myself I could handle a greater distance.

It’s just that I see that line, and all the streets I’ll be crossing. And even though I know I can manage 9+ miles, it just seems like so much more displayed on a map like that! Not to mention, trying to work back up from nothing.

But I’m up for the challenge! And I can do it!

Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do. ~John Wooden