Category Archives: Busy Schedule

Couch 2 5K: A Return and a Rethinking

Sup, readers?

 

As those of you who have been long-term readers of this blog will remember, my entire life changed when I took up Couch 2 5K. At the time, it was the hardest thing I’d ever done for myself. Now, I look back and can only sort of remember the time before I could run the way I run now — it seems like so long ago. So much has changed.

Continue reading Couch 2 5K: A Return and a Rethinking

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Weekend Roundup

Time for a weekend roundup/update!

 

This weekend was a very busy but very joyful one; I’ve got no complaints, except that I don’t know how Monday is here already! The weekend, when observed in retrospect, is a good example of ways in which I’ve learned to turn down temptations and/or pre-plan all my food. I agree wholeheartedly with the “Fail to plan? PLAN TO FAIL” mentality – so much of weight loss success is preemptively making sure your food NEEDS are met, so your food WANTS don’t get in the way. Also a tip: I pre-track everything. When I wake up in the morning I plan out, in my tracker, as much of my day as I can. And then, I just refuse to let myself derail from the things I’ve tracked. It’s helpful because I always know what is left over for snacks or a special food.

I’ll go down the list of the weekend’s events!

 

  1. Saturday: In the morning, I helped out at my parent’s annual neighborhood yard sale. Made about $20.00 selling old stuff from our kitchen and the depths of our basement, since our bridal shower(s) have equipped us well for forward motion! Usually, around lunch time on yard sale day, my mom will send me to Dunkin to pick up coffees and sandwiches for our family. And mind you, as someone who worked for Dunkin from ages 17-23, I am extremely fond of DD sandwiches. However, because we had a bridal shower (!!!!) later in the day, I told my mom I thought I’d have a Greek yogurt instead. And that is what I did.

 

  1. Saturday, Part 2: One of my very favorite people in the ENTIRE WORLD, Lauren, threw Chelsea and I a Bridal Shower for our friends who are local to the area to attend. It was such a beautiful afternoon! She put such care into every little detail – it was perfect; we loved every minute. We loved also the delicious food she prepared! Chicken and vegetable kabobs, grilled tenderloin, a really fabulous corn salad, greens, fruit salad – the works! It was all delicious and all very WW-friendly, which I so, so deeply appreciated. I did eat a cupcake – but it was a DELICIOUS cupcake, and I REGRET NOTHING. It was so lovely to gather up our NY friends and spend the afternoon laughing, eating, being together, etc. My mom drove out for the Shower, too, so she got to meet a few of our friends from the area which was a particularly great thing. All in all, it was marvelous.

 

 

  1. Saturday, Part 3: My best friend and roomie from college, Kim, came too! And she stayed over! And she is one of the only other people that Tag likes! We got hungry late at night and decided to go to Tully’s, where I ordered – wait for it – the same salad that I always order. Not too long ago, I would’ve ordered an intense amount of chicken tenders. But no longer!

 

  1. Sunday: Got up early and went on my piddly little 1 mile run. I hate only running 1 mile – it’s short and boring! It does, however, get me out there every single day. Which is the point of the GRO challenge. Afterward, I showered and got ready to head to Claudia’s house so we could drive up to Syracuse for our work picnic. Now, consider that I was out of the house from 10 AM to 6 PM. At a picnic. With no way to get “other” food aside from what had been brought. WELL GOOD THING I AM THE QUEEN OF PREPACKED LUNCHES because I brought a lunchbox full of smart, WW-friendly foods and ate them slowly throughout the day. I even brought hot tea in my new thermos (sexy thermos that it is) because hot beverages tend to make a person feel fuller than they are and so I drank my green tea before lunch. All in all, I was extremely proud that I only ate ONE. SINGLE. CORN CHIP. From the buffet of options available. Elsewise, my yogurt and I were happily separate, foodwise. When I got home, I ate a healthy dinner (zucchini-stuffed lasagna, from SkinnyTaste recipe, made by my momma! And also steamed broccoli) and had some blueberries and relaxed.

Packed my lunch for Monday, got my clothes, etc. together, and a new week begins. Hmph.

 

 

Gotta Run One: Day 5

Well, Sunday was not an optimal running day. I had to leave for a work event by 10 AM, and felt guilty/like a bad hostess to leave my best friend and college roomie, Kim, perched on my couch as I headed out the door. All the same, I only got a single mile in. Very disappointing, but very expected — I knew I wouldn’t have much time this weekend and ANY miles, even single ones, are better than none!

Check out my ridiculous bedhead before I put on my running hat!

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Gotta Run One: Day 3

This morning, I reaaaally wanted to sleep in. It’s going to be such a busy weekend and Friday is usually my day to recharge before Saturday and Sunday (which, in our family, are always as busy as the weekdays!).

However: I made a promise to you and to me and to the Universe. I said I would get out there and run each day for at least one month.

Today is exceptionally busy: I have a staff meeting at 12 noon for which I need to leave by 11:30 and I am teaching at 3:30. So it’s a bit of a bumpy ride today. That made fitting in a run kind of tricky. Don’t want to have to shower twice, etc.

So I got out of bed by 9, and woke up a little and had a banana and water.

Then off I went!

I forgot to check my watch to see when I had hit 0.5 and by the time I realized, I was at 0.8 and near a familiar turnaround point. So I forged on, and clocked about 2.1 total.

The course was entirely flat, all sidewalk. The morning was cool, if a bit humid. I ran strong and steady, kept an easy pace.

The picture of me for today is supremely disheveled and sleepy looking. I was hoping to convey JUST HOW LITTLE I FELT LIKE IT today. The second, of course, is my Garmin shot.

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Gotta Run One: Day 2

I have decided to embark upon a project where, for at least one month, I run at least one mile every day.

The project could ultimately end up running (Ha! Pun not even intended!) for much longer, depending on how much of a pain in the butt it turns out to be.

And so, though they’ll be boring (since I often wear the same/similar running clothes and hat) I think I will take a picture each day. I have grand ambitions of making one of those YouTube videos set to motivational music where it’s just a collage of me takin selfies every day for a year…

In any case: today’s run was originally going to be a single mile — and ended up being 5K. I went the opposite direction that I usually go, intending to explore that half of the neighborhood. Almost immediately, I remembered why I never go that way: HOLY HILLS BATMAN. Ugh. Anyway, once I was out there, I just decided to stay out there. So 5K it was — my legs were tired from yesterday, but I still stayed steady. All miles under 11:30, 3.27 miles in 36:18:02.

As promised, here are pictures of me rocking my new running shirt (THANKS MOM!!!) and of my Garmin showing the day’s work.

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Weekly Weigh-In #29

It’s been awhile since I’ve posted a weekly weight on here! Granted, it’s becoming harder to weigh in on exactly the same day since I prefer a particular set of conditions for weigh-in day (post-run, etc.) and my schedule keeps changing. But have no fear: I will post a weekly weight, but the date might change here and there depending on when I’ve run and all that.

Of course, I do know that some of the post-run weight-loss is water weight, but I figure, as long as the number continues to trend downward (and it does!), why not give myself the extra delight of clocking a slightly lower weight? It’s not like I’m not losing weight aside from the sweat!

That all being said, before yesterday I hadn’t weighed in for a little over two weeks because of some very persistent PMS bloating. I knew I was following my program, staying within my points, and working out regularly as per usual — so I knew in the end I’d be fine, but didn’t want to see those ugly bloating numbers.
Here are yesterday’s results:

Last Week(ish): 153.9
This Week: 149.6
Loss Since Last Week: 4.3 lbs
Loss Since January: 33.7YOWZA. That’s a lot of milestones at once!

1. I have officially lost over 30 lbs since January!
2. I am OUT OF THE 150’s. May this moment live on forever!
3. This weigh-in occurred after my longest run of all time, but the run was NOT a sweaty one since it was cold outside. I am VERY pleased! I weighed myself no fewer than 6 times, allowing the scale to re-set between weigh-ins, before I decided it was not a fluke. I am still semi-skeptical since that’s a big loss for 2.5 weeks, but I’m also excited. At the very least, I’ve no doubt that I am continuing to lose. By how much remains to be seen. I suppose such a weigh-in is proof that if I stick with the plan, even if I am up TEN WHOLE LBS during my period, all that weight does always go away, and then some. I’ve been “feeling” skinnier lately as the bloating has gone down. That feeling of being a bit smaller makes me inclined to trust the scale.Must try to remember this glorious feeling next time I’m stressed about PMS weight.

Back in the Blogging Saddle!

Howdy, ya’ll!

Sorry I’ve been away the past two weeks. Two weeks ago was my birthday week, and last week was the final week of the semester — so writing papers, grading papers, all that. It’s been CRAZY. So I’ve not been blogging. I do hope you’ll forgive me.

I’m still being healthy — I know sometimes when people who are open about their health journeys fall off the radar, others assume they’ve fallen off the wagon. Not in this case! I am still on the wagon. Just haven’t had time to blog.

So what’ve I been up to? Well, the short version: My birthday and Mother’s Day were the same weekend. Both days, I ate my usual. Both evenings, we cooked WW-friendly delicious dinners with my family. I had DELICIOUS ICE CREAM CAKE BOTH DAYS, and I regret nothing.

This week is that annoying time of the month, and I am up about half a pound but I know it’ll go away. Always does.

Otherwise, last week I was down to 161.7. CLOSING IN ON THOSE 150’s, MAN. CLOSING RIGHT IN.

In the world of running: Ran every single day of birthday week but only 3 days last week. Had one AWFUL run outside at the Vestal Rail Trail — I’m still learning to pace myself when not on a treadmill, and at 85 degrees and too fast a clip, I was donezo — but two GLORIOUS neighborhood runs. I’ll post about those later.

Healthwise, though, all really is well. This post isn’t too interesting, I know; it’s just me popping in to say that I’ve only fallen off the blogging radar, not the health radar! I’ll probably post two or three times a week now that it’s summer and I’m trying to relax AND get ready for field exams all at once. I’ll be around though.

Don’t miss me too much. :-p

Week 15: A Love Story in Two Parts (Part 2)

This post is for you.

If you’re reading this — I mean it — this post is for you.

You inspire me. You motivate me. You remind me of my worth. You have celebrated me. You have validated me. You have made me feel as though I am being cheered on and loved and supported. You made every single step of my journey so far possible.

I owe so much to you.

When I first started this blog, and indeed, started my wellness journey, I was so embarrassed that the journey even needed to happen. If you read the “Who Am I?” section of this blog, that shame is plastered all over it. I didn’t want the bitchy girls from high school to know I had gained weight. I didn’t want my exes to know. I didn’t want… myself to know, really. It was hard to admit to myself, and even harder to admit publicly.

And so starting this blog was both an act of penance and a leap of faith. By sharing that pain and that shame, I was trying to free myself from it — or at least admit that it was happening. I didn’t really expect anyone aside from my closest friends to read along. I certainly didn’t expect feedback. I just wrote, and put it out there, and did so not because I was self-promoting (I’m embarrassed by this journey, remember?) but because I had promised to myself that I would remain accountable.

But then you found me, reader. And you sent text messages. And you called me. And you messaged me on Facebook. You submitted recipes. You liked posts, commented on pictures, and told me when you ran into me on a random Saturday that you made one of my recipes and now, it’s a staple at your house. You asked me questions. You actually wanted MY advice. You came out of the woodwork after years of our not speaking for whatever reason. You admitted to me that you’re struggling, too. You talked to me about running. You told me new power foods to try. You cheered for me. You read along. You proved to me what I always suspected: That more people feel the way I feel than they care to admit.

The affirmation has been life-changing.

I am all about body positivity, yes, but my blog isn’t about loving where you’re at — at least, not specifically. It’s about finding the motivation to keep going and become better. I think finding that motivation can be just as hard — harder, maybe — than loving who you already are. The discipline and commitment required are no joke. And your support and validation helped keep me on track: knowing you looked forward to posts and knowing you were rooting for me helped me focus on just how much I wanted to really get this right.

I hate to indulge in the cliche, but here it is: You believed in me. And it makes me believe in me.

The best thing I ever, ever did was swallow my shame and write this blog. Becoming open and honest about my struggle with my weight was a huge risk/vulnerability, but in taking those steps, I opened myself up to such wonderful friendships and such genuine support. When I “came clean” about the things that were hard, they became easier. When you all showed me through your love and empathy that I didn’t need to be ashamed, I stopped feeling ashamed. And when you kept coming back to read, I kept writing.

On WordPress, we’ve got over 100 followers. On FB, we’re closing in on 150. And for the record: almost none of those numbers overlap, since my WP readers are people I’ve never met before and about 70 of my FB readers are people I know.

The very best advice I could ever give to anyone who is considering beginning a weight loss or wellness journey? Aside from the obvious — commitment, discipline, etc.? Tell the truth. Tell your story. Be honest about who you are, and what you want, and what you need. And you will be amazed by how many people who know you and love you will support you on this journey.

Week 15 has come, and with it, a new me is popping up out of the dirt and grime like a spring flower, dammit.

I changed my life.

And you helped me.

Thank you.

Week 15, A Love Story in 2 Parts (Part 1)

This post has been a long time coming.

Together, we have finally arrived at Week 15. Well, it’s Week 16 now, but we’ve reached/passed Week 15, and to me, that’s a big and special week. Long, long ago when this blog first began, I was struggling to keep up my motivation. In one of my posts, I wrote:

“One pound could be anything.

And so, it’s hard to celebrate 1.5 lbs.

It almost feels like the road to weight loss hasn’t started at all yet — it would be so easy to flail and give up now and go back to the world of non-obsessive eating habits. If a pound can fluctuate on any given day, how do I even know I can attribute its loss to my efforts? It’s so tempting to just “start next week,” or have a massive brownie “just this once,” and plan (and then re-plan, and re-plan) on starting tomorrow or next week.

But I suppose I’d never see week 15 then.

And I really want to see week 15. And week 30, week 54.”

In my head, I had a budding romance with Week 15 the way little girls dream of their Prince (or Princess!) Charming. I waited for it. I worked for it. I wondered what it would be like. I imagined myself squeezing into old clothes with ease. I imagined myself running MARATHONS. Actually, I’m kidding about the marathons. Back when I wrote that post, I really hoped in the depth of my heart that I would be able to run a mile or two at once. That was all I wanted. Week 15 became the Camelot, the Promised Land, blah blah blah. Week 15 would not be one ambiguous pound, I thought to myself, Week 15 won’t be able to be denied.

I wanted to see Week 15.

I wanted to see it so badly.

Knowing that if I hung in there long enough, Week 15 would roll around, I realized I had to continually put in the work if I wanted this little waystation/weighstation (har har har) to be what I imagined. So I did. And you helped me. And here’s where we are today.

Today is just past Week 15. We’re on Week 16 now.

And as of a midweek weigh-in, it’s looking pretty definite that I will have lost over 20 lbs by this Friday’s weigh-in, and I’m closing in on the 160’s after beginning this January in the mid-180’s, and beginning WW in general years ago at 198 before finally getting my act together. So that one ambiguous pound has turned into twenty. It cannot be denied.

As of today, I am sitting at my desk and wearing my very favorite shorts. They’re khaki shorts from Loft and they’re comfy and cute and can be worn to look classy or slouchy, depending on whether I feel like a preppy lady or a hipster Q. I love them dearly — and for the PAST THREE YEARS (well, since two full summers and a winter ago) they have not been able to even be buttoned. Today, I’m wearing them slouchily with a flannel and a knit cap, and I’m wearing them with a belt, and I look adorable, and this is the first time I have worn these shorts outside my house (or at all) in THREE YEARS, and it cannot be denied.

When I first began runnning, a “long run” was anything more than a mile. The 30 minutes of Couch to 5K left me beat, every time. The only way I was able to convince myself to keep doing it was to say “It’s only 30 minutes,” and then think of all the other things I could do in 30 minutes and how short it seemed. 30 minutes for Family Guy episodes, a phone game, petting Tag, scrolling through FB… So I convinced myself I could spend the 30 minutes another way. Time went by; I graduated Couch to 5K; I kept running. Now, my shortest runs are 4 miles; my medium runs at 5-6 miles, and my longest runs are 6.5 miles and up. I’ve also cut my per-mile time from 12 to 10. When I first started running, my weight loss was stubborn and I didn’t see immediate changes — and that made it so hard to stick with it. Now, I am losing (on average) 1.7 lbs a week. Now, I look forward to my run each day (well, 5-6 days a week). Now, I do with the treadmill what I used to do with TV: “Oh, five more minutes, please!” I am running, and loving it, and have breezed through most of the 160’s weight-wise with such speed that all I can do is wonder why I didn’t start running sooner. I am a RUNNER, now. It cannot be denied.

Back when I first began my WW-hustle, I used to say to Chelsea pretty much every day: WHEN WILL I GET TO EAT LIKE EVERYONE ELSE AGAIN? WHEN WILL I STOP WANTING SHITTY FOOD? These days, I love everything I eat. I don’t WANT to go back to eating crappy food — the thought makes me queasy. So if that’s how “Everyone Else” eats, well, too bad/so sad. As for wanting shitty food: I don’t, anymore. Aside from the occasional NEED for chocolate, I don’t crave bad foods or large portions anymore. To me, this is perhaps the most shocking victory of all.  I used to get frustrated by smaller portion sizes, by the need to sub ingredients, by the thought that I could never have my “favorite” foods again. Now, I feel as though I eat like a queen. And I feel happier and healthier than I’ve ever been. It cannot be denied.

And so Part 1 of this “Love Story” is the story of all the things I’ve just shared — the weeks we’ve muscled through together, my body and I, and emerged victories. The one pound that has become twenty. The “changes” that became “habits.” The “running goal” that became the best part of my day. Wellness is the slow and beautiful journey of falling in love with yourself. I’m not quite there yet, but I do see more strength and conviction in me than I’ve ever seen before. Finally, my outsides are matching my insides: determined, proud, nuanced and hard-won.

It cannot be denied.

Wonderful Weekend Wrap-Up

Oh, just call me the Alliteration All-Star.

I’m joking.

I might be joking.

Am I joking?

Anyway, I gained a wee bit of weight this weekend, but I expect it’ll be gone as I plow through my workouts this week.

How did I gain the weight? And do I regret it?

Here are your answers.

1) This weekend, Chelsea’s mom & her boyfriend and my parents all came into town for our cake tasting and to go out to dinner at the Binghamton Club, where our wedding reception will be held. Lots of food. I planned to enjoy myself and I DID enjoy myself. I didn’t do anything dramatically bad — but I definitely did NOT drink enough water, and I think that’s a large part of the culprit. My stomach refuses to work like a normal stomach when I don’t drink half an ocean a day.

2) Despite the fact that I ate more than usual, I did stay within my points and am not bothered by the momentary gain. And even if I do gain, it’s a lesson learned. And I’m not worried about it. And I don’t regret it. Because life is for the living, I say! Enjoying the occasional really big treat is never a bad thing. I made pretty healthy choices all weekend despite eating a larger quantity than normal; these occasions are what life is. Can’t be stressing about it. I bet by the end of the week I’ve still gone down a bit and lost.

I’m back on the wagon as of today (Monday) though, and ran 6.8 miles to make up for taking Saturday and Sunday off.

Back to the grind, man.