Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Weigh-In Wednesday: this sh*t is hard

For the past 5 weeks or so, I've been following Weight Watchers, going to the meetings, and trying to up my workout game.  It worked for awhile.  You can't even see the starting weight but from highest to lowest it was 11.8 pounds.  Before I started to screw up.

This is after my weigh-in on Saturday at WW (yes, I covered the weights because I hate the numbers).  I gained .6 pounds last week and I weigh in at home on Wednesdays so I know I'm up another pound from here.  It pisses me off because no matter how perfect I am in the next 3 days, I will not be able to show a loss.  What's the point of going if you are going to show you failed?  For 2 weeks in a row.

This worked for about 4 weeks.  Then I started sabotaging myself by going into the teacher's lounge, eating treats, and being frustrated by the changes to the points system this past week.  Before I felt like I could go out, have a beer, eat a cookie, etc because I had enough flex points each week to do that.  Now? Not even close.  It's stupid because for the first 4 weeks, I was allowed 26 points and only one week did I go into the 49 flex points.  Now I get 30 points and every day I'm into the flex points and I'm gaining weight.

It makes me want to give up because it's too hard.  It's hard being around all the tempting holiday treats and it's hard to re-figure everything I was eating before.  Obviously, the first 4 weeks I did fantastic, losing almost 12 pounds.  Now the scale is going back up again.  I feel like I've blown 4 weeks of hard work.  I can't even eat the exact same meals as I did the past 4 weeks because the point values changed on some of them.  My "allowed" points only went up by 4 a day but my weekly flex points dropped from 49 to 28.  That's almost cut in half.  I'm now being penalized because I don't want to use fake shit - like margarine, gross fat free dressings, fake cheese, or "diet" bread.  Before the values of the foods I was eating were low enough that I could still stay within my points and I had enough flex points to put a little real butter on my decent tasting piece of toast in the morning if I wanted to but now I can't do that. My breakfast jumped from 9 points to 12 because of the changes.  My lunch went up too because my salad dressing changed. Today I used a tiny but of jam instead of butter but it wasn't the same.  I've also cut myself from 2 eggs to 1 egg plus those liquid egg white things to go from 4 points down to 2.  One day for breakfast I did just yogurt and fruit and I was starving by 11:00.  I don't know what to eat anymore.

I really don't know if I'm going to stick with this.  Someone in a FB group I belong to suggested I go back to using the Points+ tracking but since I track 100% through the app, I can't even do that because everything in the app is converted to Smart Points.  If I have to carry a paper tracker around with me and all the books, I know I won't track a single thing.  Another thing that's flawed with that suggestions.  What's the point of paying for all the e-tools if you can't even use them?

So yes, I've made progress since I decided to get back on track but the past week I feel like I've done nothing but screw up.  Someone even noticed last night that I looked thinner when I feel like it doesn't show at all.  That's cool but it's hard to be happy knowing it isn't going to last.  Sadly, I feel like I'm going to end up right back where I started because I can't seem to figure this out and I'm too much of a failure to have the self control to stay out of the lounge and away from the treats.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Three Things Thursday: Thankful Edition

Short and sweet because I only have a few minutes:

1.  I'm thankful for friends who send awesome surprise packages my way.  My friend and fellow Michigan BAMR Betsy saw something at Disney when she was there for Wine and Dine and thought of me (how incredible sweet is that?).  She said she'd send it to me and then yesterday a whole package of awesome stuff showed up at my door!  She sent me this little Disney trinket (which will be very loved by someone SHHH it's a gift) but also included some cool makeup and a bunch of Picky Bars!  Betsy is definitely one of a kind and I love that she did this.  It made my night when I was otherwise not having a great evening.

2.  I'm thankful for PT.  Yesterday I ran 3 nearly pain-free miles on the TM before my PT session and then Terence cut me loose!  I'm not officially cleared to train for the DONNA :)  I'm planning a 4 mile run for Saturday morning - wish me luck!

3.  I'm thankful for dear friends who invited me out for a girls' night tonight.  We are going to the Uptown Holiday Shop Hop - a walking/trolly/shopping extravaganza.  If you are local to Grand Rapids, MI, you should definitely check it out.  I've never gone so I'm excited to see what it's all about. Let's just hope I don't blow 4 weeks of Weight Watchers in one night because I also hear there are snacks and boozy specials.  The best part will be hanging with Jenn, Andi and Susan.

What are you thankful for today?

Monday, November 30, 2015

Weight Loss Over The Holidays?

How many of you saw some version of this image pop up in your FB or Twitter feeds over the past week?
How about we just focus on healthy eating and making good choices?  You know, it is possible to experience weight loss over the holidays.  I'm not saying it will be easy but it IS possible.

How do I know?  I lost 1.2 pounds last week, weighing in the Saturday after Thanksgiving and the day after I was out of town and eating every meal out.  I think if I hadn't been stuck eating fast food (hello, sodium), the loss may have been even better.

Last week I wrote about how success breeds motivation and that's definitely the case now.  I want to keep seeing those numbers drop and don't plan to blow it between now and New Years.  I mean, seriously, how awesome would it be to be back in the 140s by New Years Day and then maybe even the 130s by Valentines?  I only need 5 more pounds gone to make that first goal happen.

I hope you had a great Thanksgiving and if Black Friday shopping was your thing that you got some great deals.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Motivation Monday: progress IS motivating

First off - a little bit of business to take care of!  Thank you to everyone who entered my JournalMenu giveaway last week.  I love being the bearer of good news so CONGRATULATIONS to Kay Lynn A! I hope you love your workout journal!

Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming....

I don't think I've talked much about my decision to re-join Weight Watchers - at least not here on this blog probably because I rarely blog anymore.  Long story short, I got very fed up at my clothes not fitting and the awful numbers I was seeing on the scale and measuring tape.  I've tried going it on my own and it really wasn't working.  On November 7th, I hung my head in shame and walked into a Weight Watchers meeting and handed them my Visa card.  Admitting I'd gained about 25 pounds over my "happy" weight was very defeating.  So was needing to pay for meetings again (I had thankfully acheived Lifetime status back in the early 90s so I will never have to pay a joining fee.) Hopefully, I thought, the structure of WW would get me back on track.
Turns out it has.  Move ahead 2 weeks and I'm down 9 pounds and some of my clothes are starting to fit better.  I think the leader was really shocked that I wasn't more excited about getting my 5% loss charm on Saturday or the big losses I posted in my first 2 weeks, but the bottom line is I still have so far to go that it's hard to celebrate yet.

As we go into the Thanksgiving week and knowing all the travel and meals that will be included, I'm just striving to continue forward progress this week.  I won't be perfect.  I know I will not be able to stay within 26 points a day when I'm eating out while out of town or going to my MIL's for 2nd Thanksgiving (her foods will most definitely NOT be WW compliant in any way shape or form).  As for the Thanksgiving dinner I'm making, I can have a bit more control there.  All I can do is my best.

Seeing results over the past two weeks has been very motivating for me.  I've even had a couple short runs that give me hope that my running ability may be returning.  Again, I'm trying not to get my hopes up too much because I don't want to be disappointed, but a little hope is better than none.

Are you staying close to home for Thanksgiving or traveling?  What are your best tips for dealing with events such as this while trying to reduce your calorie intake?

Monday, November 16, 2015

Motivation Monday: @journalmenu #giveaway

Sometimes motivation can come from the strangest places - maybe it's a quote on a friend's FB wall, maybe it's seeing some progress on the scale, and maybe it's someone reaching out to you about new gear that gets your butt in gear.

It's not much of a secret - the "run" aspect of my blog title and life has been pretty minimal lately thanks to some pesky, nagging injuries.  Luckily, that is beginning to change and thanks to the folks at JournalMenu, I have a great place to start logging my return to running.

What is JournalMenu?  JournalMenu is a personalized fitness journal designed to match your goals, your activities and your personality.  With the ability to create your own cover and journal contents, the journals are truly unique.  Whether you are into running, weightlifting, yoga, food tracking or (fill in your favorite activity here), the creators of JournalMenu will assist you in finding the journal that is best for you.

I am loving the journal Erica at JournalMenu put together for me.  With sections for goals, training plans, PRs and race recaps, plus weekly logs, it has everything I need to get back on track.  Lucky for one of my readers, JournalMenu wants to help one of you reach your goals through a personalize journal of your choice!  Take a look at the journals available here and let me know what you would choose! This would be a great gift for yourself or one of your favorite workout buddies.  Enter through Rafflecopter below for a chance to win $25 to spend at JournalMenu on the customized fitness journal of your choice.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

fine print: JournalMenu provided a journal to me at no cost.  The opinions, as always, are my own.  Contest will run from 11/16/15 to 11/22/16 with winner announced by 11/24/16.  Winner must provide a way for me to reach them to send the gift card code and if they do not respond by 11/26/15, another winner will be chosen.  Winner is responsible for any costs above the $25 gift card amount and I (LLRB) am not responsible for anything related to the prize once I give winner the gift code.  

Monday, October 26, 2015

I'm a bad blogger

Forgive me, readers (if I still have any), for I have sinned.  It's been nearly 6 weeks since I last posted. I'd like to say that life just got away from me but that's not really it.

I haven't posted because I haven't had anything to talk about.  At least not anything that you all would want to read about.  My life lately has been pretty boring. I did run a 5k during my alma mater's homecoming festivities at the beginning of October but since then it's just been PT exercises and no running. PT sucks, by the way, especially during marathon season and you are watching all your running friends tear it up at races all over the country. I am starting to like the TENS unit jolting me on a regular basis since I feel like that's the only exercise I get these days, but otherwise it seems like a colossal waste of time. The crap with the bands? Forget about it.

My PT wants me to run a test 5k this weekend and I'm hoping doing it in sunny Florida makes all the difference in the world.  I'll be down there to visit my girl for the weekend so even if the run goes crappy, the rest of the weekend will be great. If you are in the Tampa area and available on Thursday (10/29)around 7:30 I'll be at Bahama Breeze on N. Rocky Point for dinner & drinks. Come say "hi"!

What's happening in your life lately?

Monday, September 14, 2015

All Aboard!

Well, would you look at that.  I haven't posted here in over a month.  Do I even have any readers left? Here's a quick look at how the past 6 weeks or so have gone in case anyone out there is wondering:

  • Moved 2 kids to college - one of them over 1200 miles away.  Thank God for FaceTime.
  • Made multiple trips to closer child's college for football games (actually to watch him in the marching band).
  • Blew all weight loss success from last year as reminded by yesterday's TimeHop.  The failure hasn't happened just in the last 6 weeks but more an accumulation over the past year with the summer being the nail in the coffin.  Last year yesterday, I got back into my favorite $100 jeans.  Yesterday I couldn't even get them up over my fat thighs and ass.  The number on the scale and the fat on my body is disgusting to me.  Yes, I know I should be kinder to myself but that isn't happening so long as I look and feel like I do.
  • Started back to work and took on an intern (luckily it looks like she will be awesome).  The start of the school year always stresses me out.  More so this year with my house very empty.  I'm hoping getting back into a routine will help with the third bullet point there.
  • Stopped running after my Labor Day Mackinac Bridge Run.  This was probably one of my slowest paced "runs" ever and barely even qualified as a run since I averaged just under a 12 minute mile pace.  (If you are this pace or slower, this is not a dig toward you - I can walk very fast so to "run" practically my walk pace is really frustrating, particularly when I should be able to average a 10 m/m pace most days.)  I'm hurt.  Injuries suck ass, especially when you really need the sweat therapy.  I haven't gone back to the podiatrist because I really don't think he would say anything other than, "you need a new pair of $500 orthotics".
There you have it.  I'm ready to get off the struggle bus and I've been logging my food and exercise old school style.  Sorta.  It's in a Google Doc.  I decided MFP also stressed me out because if I ate anything I didn't prepare, I couldn't log it correctly and the perfectionist in me thinks if I can't do something right then I shouldn't do it at all.  At least just writing stuff down is better than nothing.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Fitness Friday: LPGA Final Round #ForeHunger

Until last Sunday, I had no idea how much exercise one could get while watching 18 holes of golf.  As part of the Meijer LPGA Classic 5k, I was given 2 passes to Sunday's final round.  What I didn't realize is the VIP treatment my guest and I were going to receive. (disclaimer: I was given these passes in exchange for participating in the 5k and blogging about my experience)

The event is held in Belmont, Michigan with parking at Rockford High School.  My friend, Kitzie, and I got to the high school in time to pick up our passes and take what I thought would be school buses to Blythefield Country Club.  Nope - they had air conditioned charter buses for all the spectators.  So much nicer than a school bus!

We took the short ride to the course and had time to wander around for a bit before meeting up with my contacts, Annye and Katie.  Right after entering the grounds, we saw these beauties!  There was also a giant Kraft macaroni noodle :)
Kitzie and I made our way to the first hole and watched the first few rounds of golfers tee off.  This was the final round and we were assigned to the 9:10 group (the leaders wouldn't tee off until around 10:00).  I don't really follow women's golf (or men's for that matter) but I did recognize a few names.  It was cool to watch Christie Kerr tee off.
After we met up with Annye and Katie, we were given our special "inside the ropes" passes.  The only give out 3 or 4 pairs of these each day, usually to major sponsors, members of the country club, or contest winners, so we felt very honored to receive them.  What this allowed us to do was to walk the entire 18 holes with 3 of the professional golfers.
Me and Kitzie in front of the clubhouse.

We were assigned to Kim Kaufman from South Dakota, Xi Yu Lin from China, and Ju Young Park of South Korea.  As soon as we were escorted to the first tee, all three golfers came over and introduced themselves.  Even their caddies were extremely friendly and welcoming.  A professional photographer snapped pictures but I have no idea how to get copies of them.  We didn't take any pictures with the athletes (yes - they are very much athletes and so are their caddies!) because once the round started they were all business.
That's Kim in the front talking to Xi Yu and Ju Young is in front of the caddies.
Walking right now the middle of the fairway during the LPGA Classic final round was an incredible experience.  Watching their athleticism and power was a highlight.  We were able to listen to the caddies give their athletes suggestions and we even had access to their refreshments at some of the holes.  I know practically nothing about golf but Kitzie golfs on a regular basis so it was nice to have someone explain things to me.
We spent about 4 1/2 hours with the athletes.  Kitzie had her step counter running on her phone and by the end of the round, we had walked over 13,000 steps or a little over 6 miles!  Yes, with all the hills on the course my legs were TIRED, especially after running a fast 5k the day before.  It was an absolutely BEAUTIFUL day for golf and I feel very privileged I got to watch the final round from behind the ropes.

Thank you Meijer, Kraft and the LPGA for a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

LPGA 5k #ForeHunger #racereport

This past weekend, I participated in the 2nd annual LPGA Classic 5k affiliated with the Meijer LPGA Classic.  I was provided with a free entry to run the race for offering to join a team of Michigan bloggers, but after running I would pay next year.  It was a well organized and very fun event.  (Sadly, or not since we aren't fast, we didn't have enough bloggers to be an official team, but it was still super fun.)

Before the race started, I met up with my friend, Megan, who was also participating and we snapped a picture with Tony the Tiger.  Kellogg's is also a major sponsor and this was a fundraiser for their organization, Simply Give, which helps stock food pantries throughout the Midwest.
This race is very small (only about 500 people total) but was friendly towards any ability level.  There were the uber fast runners - the winner went 15:01 which is unreal to me - all the way to walkers with their kids.  Then there were the rest of us mortals :)  Your entry into the race got you a nice t-shirt, a sling-bag, and if you so desired 2 tickets to the LPGA Classic.

The race is held at Rockford High School, and having been there many times for sporting events, I knew the surrounding area could be VERY hilly.  Luckily, the course was great with a downhill first mile, only one hill in the 2nd mile, and a finish on the RHS track.  I haven't pushed a run in a long time and it felt great to really work this one.  Megan is super fast and finished several minutes before me and she snapped a picture of me on the track.

I finished in 31:02 - a 9:59 average pace!! I haven't done that in quite awhile, so I was very happy with my time.  My splits were 9:30, 10:53 (I really need to work on hills and drinking without walking), 10:02, and then an 8:30 pace on the track.  Who am I???

All of the mile markers featured Tony the Tiger so we had to snap a picture with a giant box of Frosted Flakes at the finish.  After the race was a huge breakfast for all the runners.  Many varieties of cereal, milk, juice, Pop Tarts, various granola bars, protein drinks and even some Gluten Free items were available.

Megan and I hung out with her hubby at the breakfast for awhile before we both took off to get cleaned up.  I needed to rest up before attending the LPGA Classic final round on Sunday!  More on that later this week.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Fitness Friday: #ForeHunger

Good morning, friends!

Just a quick heads up about a great event happening in my neck of the woods this weekend.

The Meijer LPGA Classic started yesterday at Blythefield Country Club north of Grand Rapids, MI.  Meijer, Kraft and Gazelle Sports have teamed together with Kellogg's to support food pantries in the Midwest through Simply Give.  This golf event is one of their major fundraisers.

There is a 5k tomorrow (July 25th) in Rockford, Michigan. Myself and fellow bloggers Mindy and Megan (as well as 7 other bloggers) are running as a team.  It should be a ton of fun.  Please come out and join us!

Sunday, I will be attending the final round where I will get to watch some incredible women golfers.  I'll be sharing my experience with you.  Watch for the hashtag #ForeHunger as I tweet and post throughout the weekend.

If you are local to the West Michigan area, I strongly encourage you to come out and support our community through this great event.  As a bonus, you will receive 2 tickets to the tournament if you sign up for the race.

disclaimer: I was offered a free entry into the 5k and tickets to Sunday's round in exchange for my thoughts on the event.  As always, the opinions are all my own.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Three Things Thursday: Currently

This week my friend, Carla, wrote a blog post imagining we could be sitting down with a cup of coffee and chatting about what is currently going on with our lives.  I only wish I could be as transparent and open as is.  Too many people I know read this blog and I've been burned in the past about stupid stuff like swearing (for real - someone from church told my husband he should talk to me about the language I use on MY blog, because a - like it was their fucking business and b - it's M's job to police my behavior), so I can't really open my heart like I'd like.

So here is my somewhat edited "currently" in TTT format.

1.  I went to yoga today and was so frustrated by my lack of ability that it took everything I had to not leave the studio 15 minutes into class.  I fought back tears but could not leave with my daughter on the mat next to me.  I sucked out loud and it only served to reinforce what I already feel. I'd been feeling pretty good about the yoga sessions but today really took me down.

2.  My daughter leaves for college in less than 3 weeks and my son in about 4 weeks. I'm not ready.  I keep putting on a brave face but I really fear for what fall is going to bring.  I know they are ready and I'm so blessed to have two strong, smart, independent young adults, but yes, I'm scared.

3.  Because money is tight (hello 2 kids starting college and a $700 repair on my POS van last week), I've been donating plasma twice a week since early June to earn my "play" money.  I haven't said much on social media but I'm treating it like a job - scheduled days/hours and I take it seriously.  I think I eat well (except the 161 fucking pounds currently showing on the scale may say otherwise) and I've done really well with it other than some nausea, up until this week.  I had a scare on Monday.  I went in not feeling 100% and when they took my temp, it was 99*.  Not high enough to deny me but high for me.  I still donated because they didn't say I couldn't, then I came home and 2 hours later almost passed out while getting ready to go to yoga.  Needless to say, I skipped yoga that day and didn't go to my group run the next day either.  I donated again on Wednesday (because it's my job) and my protein level was the lowest it can possibly be to donate.  Now I'm afraid I'm going to lose this source of income and I won't be able to plan any visits to friends anymore.  It really sucks.

There you go.  Three things currently on my mind.  Anything you'd like to share over a cup of coffee with me?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

#racereport Rock n Roll Chicago 10k

Photo-heavy post because that's how I feel like rolling on this one.  You're welcome.

After last year's very tough RnR Chicago Half Marathon (in which I ran 18 miles training for Detroit), I said I would never do another RnR event.  I wasn't impressed with the bands at all and I didn't feel like it was worth the cash.  However, the opportunity to see my friend, Renee (who now lives in the Netherlands), was a very good reason to never say never and sign up for the 10k
Renee and I met up at the expo. Decent expo and I drove a Toyota for a $10 gift card, which I used to buy a pint glass.

Love the shirt.
 After walking around the expo for a bit, Renee and I headed to our hotel and I set out Flat Bari.

 We stayed the the Congress Hotel, which I would highly recommend for any races starting or finishing at the north end of Grant Park.  Literally only a few blocks from the start/finish for the Half.  I had a mile walk to the 10k start line down Michigan Avenue.
Took the stairs because the elevator was "busy".
 Renee's friend, Becky, also came into town to run the half marathon and hang out with Renee.  She was a riot and we may have been a little slap-happy by the time we finally got ready for bed. (Note-I recommend packing your own breakfast for races like this.  The girls really wanted bagels and we had to hit about 4 or 5 places before we found any at 9pm at night.)

As usual, I slept very little before the race and was up extremely early.  The temps were already AWFUL with a dew point of 72*.
 We got up and got ready, then took an obligatory, pre-race blurry picture.  Renee and Becky needed to get to their start and I headed south to mine.
 The sunrise over Grant Park could not have been any more beautiful.  It almost made getting up at 4am worth it.
I'll be honest, seeing how tiny the starting corral was really shook me up.  I was very concerned that hardly any people were running and I was going to end up DFL.  Turns out it was really small but I did pretty well considering how hot it was.
 I was in a port-a-potty line 3 minutes before the start, so I jumped back out and self-seeded myself in the 2nd wave.  There were 3 waves and they went off about a minute apart.  Easy peasy.  Luckily, there was no line at the potties about 1/2 a mile in so I stopped to pee.
This was the only picture I took and it was around the 2.5 mile mark.  I was completely drenched in sweat and was stopping at every water station to drink and dump water on myself.  I couldn't even operate my phone so I kept it tucked away.
 I finished in 1:10:05.  I was hoping for 1:15 with how hot and humid it was, so I'm happy with this time.  The best part was finishing 46/167 in my age group.  I'm not sure I've ever finished that high, so clearly the heat really affected the runners.
One of the best parts of the day was the afterparty.  Last year, the band sucked and I didn't stick around.  This year they brought in Andy Grammar and he put on a great, hour-long show.  I was there early enough (thanks to running the 10k instead of the half) to get about 15-20 feet from the stage.  

Super fun weekend with lots of awesome girl time and a great concert.  Not too shabby.

Did you race this past weekend?

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Weigh-In Wednesday: a rough week

(*edited* Yes, It's Thursday. I realized after I published this TODAY that it isn't Wednesday. That's how this week has gone.)

This week has not been fun. I know I haven't eaten as well as I should and there may have been a night where more than a glass or two of wine was consumed.

I've had a nearly $800 van repair that didn't completely fix the problems.  On the plus side, there were two things that they fixed that were actually covered by that elusive "Lifetime Power Train Warranty".  I looked them up and they would have added at least another $400 to that bill, so there's that.  The sucky thing is it goes back in again next week.

Must be true.  I've made it this far.  :)

Somehow through this I managed to lose a pound from last week.  Brightside?

I've been really debating whether I should go to Chicago this weekend.  I'm broke and borderline injured but not to the point that I can't run, I just can't run well.  Luckily it's a large enough race that it's unlikely I'll be DFL.  Plus, I'm already over $150 in for this race so it would kill me to not show up and I really want to see Renee.  I'll just have to be extra careful with what I spend while I'm there since I'll probably be hit with more stupid car repair costs next week.  Since I have that 5k the following weekend, I need to come home not anymore injured than I already am, too.

Have I mentioned how much I hate my van?  And my achilles?

The yoga class I've been attending had a lesson yesterday on replacing negative thoughts with opposite positive ones.  So I guess the positives are that there was enough money in the checking account to cover this week's car repairs, I don't have a car payment on top of it, and I can still sorta run.  How's that?

Anyhoo...Until next week.  Maybe I'll write a race report when I get back.  I haven't done that in awhile.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Three Things Thursday: I said I wouldn't race...

Yep, awhile back I said I was taking time off from racing to get my twins off to college in the fall.  Well, best laid plans and all...

I somehow managed to get three races on my schedule for this summer.  Now, running in the summer can be frustrating at best and downright awful at worst, so I have no goals for these races other than to go have fun.

1.  Rock N Roll Chicago 10k - After last year's negative experience running the RnR Chicago Half Marathon, I decided I would never do another RnR race.  Too much hype, too much money, and not enough bang for the buck.  Plus, this one is in July in Chicago and it's like running on the surface of the sun.  That being said, when my friend Renee told me she was coming from the Netherlands to run, I couldn't let the opportunity pass by to see her.  I'm not in half marathon shape, so I registered for the 10k.  If you are going to be in Chicago July 18-19, let me know and we can try to get together!  Rumor has it, Meb will be there!!
2.  Meijer LPGA Classic 5k - A week or two ago, I was approached by the good folks at Meijer regarding joining a team of 10 bloggers to run the 5k associated with the Meijer LPGA Classic at Blythefield Country Club.  Meijer, Kraft and Gazelle Sports have teamed together with Kellogg's to support food pantries in the Midwest through Simply Give and this even is one of their major fundraisers.  The race is on July 25 in Rockford, Michigan as part of the LPGA Classic weekend (July 21-26, 2015).  As part of the event, I will also be attending the final round on Sunday, July 26th where I will get to watch some of the best women golfers in the world and then share my experience with all of you.  Maybe I'll even be inspired to take up golf!  If you are local to the West Michigan area, I strongly encourage you to come out and support our community through this great event.  As part of your race entry, you will also receive 2 tickets to the tournament.
3.  Labor Day Bridge Run - On September 7, I get to check off a major item on my bucket list.  I'll be running 5 miles across the Mackinac Bridge from St. Ignace to Mackinaw City.  This race is open by lottery and even though I said I'd never enter a lottery for a race, I threw my name in for this one.  Somehow I actually got in.  After confirmations were received, the race was opened for the general public and as of today, there were still spots available to run (they limit this to 500 people) so if you are interested, click the link and get registered.  If you need a place to stay, let me know and I'll see what I can do to help.  Following the run, there is a community walk across the bridge which is open to anyone so it would make a great family getaway if you can swing it.  If you are running or walking, please let me know!  I'd love to say "Hi".  I still can't believe I get to run over this beautiful bridge!
There you have it...a lesson learned to never say never.  Here I went into the summer saying I was taking time off from races and now I'm running three in the next couple months.

Are you racing this summer?  Any races on your bucket list?

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Not liking this trend

So I followed the advice of a few friends and put the scale away for a bit.  I went on vacation and while I was gone, I got in a few runs and ate whatever I felt like eating.  No low carb. No tracking. No counting calories.  I came back from vacation and waited a few days before I weighed in. Shockingly, I only gained about 1/2 a pound while I was gone.  

Flash forward another week where I've been more on track food-wise and exercising more, and now I'm up 2 more pounds.  What the actual fuck???

I decided to go back in MFP and see a graph for the last year.  11 pounds gained is NOT what I had in mind.  I can only imagine what my doctor is going to say when I'm in for my annual physical next month.

Because I'm some kind of masochist, I took a few pictures.  Because pictures don't lie.  I look as bad as I feel.  I am resembling a stuffed sausage in my clothes and that's really not a good look for me.


There once was a time I really liked my back.  Now? All I see is fat spilling over the sides of my way too tight sports bra and tank top.  There are no muscles left.

I was *thisclose* to joining Weight Watchers again this morning.  Why didn't I?  Because as a "Lifetime Member" I would have to pay again until I reached my previous goal weight - which was 141 from probably over 10 years ago.  There is no way that is a realistic goal anymore when I can't even get to 150.  

I'm kind of stuck.  I started tracking again today but that really hasn't worked for me.  I should probably go back to very low carb.  Honestly, I did lose a few pounds (it's that recent dip on the graph).  I need to get back to the gym and start lifting again.  I bought a 1-month unlimited yoga membership with my daughter to support her going (doctor's orders for her to see if they help her migraines).  We went on Monday and Tuesday's run was very painful and this morning's run turned into a walk because my Achilles and calves were so sore.  I thought yoga was supposed to help, not make you worse.  Going again today so we shall see.

I really don't want advice.  I don't want people suggesting this diet or that diet.  Chances are, I've already tried and failed at them.  If  Whole 30 or Paleo or 21 Day Fix or works for you, that's great.  I'm done thinking they will work for me.  I'm just putting this out there for some accountability to myself.

Back on the wagon I guess.  

Monday, June 29, 2015

A needed break

I know I haven't been around these parts much lately. I've got some stuff going on and while writing about it could be therapeutic, writing about it here would be quite the opposite.

Bear with me. I hope to be back at some point but I just don't know when. In the meantime, some good thoughts and mojo headed this way would be appreciated.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

I'm a pro at sabotage

It's weigh-in Wednesday but I'm so mixed up from dealing with other things that I didn't remember until after I ate breakfast. Today's weight is actually yesterday's, but it still sucks.  It also appears I suck at remembering to blog since it's been a couple weeks now.

It's been a solid month of low carb and I should be back into the 140s by now. Obviously I'm not. Not even close. It seems I fail at every diet/eating plan I attempt: Whole30, paleo, low carb, low fat. Doesn't matter what it is, I fail. I'm not strong enough to be perfect and my body clearly punishes me if I'm not perfect.  Since I'm heading into a week long road trip where all meals will be eaten out, I'm pretty much giving up on this.  Even the past week where I've traveled a bunch I've made what I thought were better choices - leaving out the breads, choosing salads or a side of vegetables over fries, passing on beer - it hasn't worked.  I still have a tortilla chip here and there.  I piece of dark chocolate.  I'm still up because I can't just eat boring meat and salads with no other vegetables besides lettuce.  After some good dips down, I'm almost back to where I started, which makes it very difficult to stay motivated.

I know I'm not eating perfectly and it pisses me off that I don't have the willpower.  I haven't been working out hard enough.  Excuses would be that I'm really tired and have no mental or physical energy.  I'm going to be traveling and don't know where I'll run.  I was planning to do a long run tomorrow while my dad is having surgery in downtown Chicago, but now that the weather is predicting storms all fucking day, I'll be spending 6 to 8 hours sitting on my fat ass instead of running along the lake in one of my favorite places to run on the planet.  I probably won't even bother to pack running clothes now.  Maybe I just need to learn to be happy being fat because that's obviously what my body wants at this point.

Yes, I'm whining.  I'm pissed at myself that I can't make this work.  Whatever the fuck "this" is. The good news?  If there is anyone who still reads this blog, you won't have to listen to me bitch for another couple of weeks because I also don't have the energy to post anymore.  Maybe I'll be back after vacation or maybe I won't.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Training Tuesday: when you just aren't training

I'm going to come right out and say it...I don't want to run.  I don't want to do much of anything to be perfectly honest.  I have nothing on the horizon except a mud run in about 3 weeks and I have no hope of completing it with any level of success.  I guess just getting through it and trying to have fun with my daughter is all I can hope for on that front since I can't even do 2 real pushups at this point.

I think not wanting to workout makes me lazy.  Am I just being lazy?

According to DailyMile, I had a "stellar" week last week.  By all accounts, it looks like I did, but to say "stellar" is a bit of a stretch.

Yes, I did *something* every day last week, but if you were to examine it a bit closer, you'd see that none of those workouts were longer than about 40 minutes and most were 30 minutes or less.  Shit, you can get pizza delivered in that amount of time.

Now I want pizza.  And the copious amounts of treats in the teacher's lounge today.  It's taking an enormous amount of willpower to not go in there.

I'm certainly not going to get into shape at this rate but I've lost all motivation to workout.  Even knowing I'm going to the Florida at the end of the month and will need to put on a bathing suit isn't enough motivation anymore.  I forced myself to lift for a whopping 15 minutes yesterday and then get on my bike for 30 more minutes, but it was half-assed at best.  I didn't even hook up my Garmin because Why? It just doesn't matter.

Do I run or do anything tonight before my girl's Varsity Letter Reception?  Even knowing I'd have to shower again makes it seem like too much hassle to get dressed to workout.  In fact, I have stuff every night this week and I've been too tired in the mornings to drag my lazy ass out of bed.  Between graduation last week, commitments this week, personal life shit, and trying to get ready for my twin's graduation party this weekend, I'm just done.

What do you do when you just don't want to do anything?

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Weigh-In Wednesday: I failed

Yep.  That would be a gain this week.  Did you know it's possible to gain weight on a very low carb diet?  Well, it really isn't, at least not this early into the plan.  The fact that I gained means I fucked up.

This past weekend included two graduation parties and a grown-ups party.  I thought I could handle it and make good choices, but obviously I was wrong.

make good choices

It sucks to have undone over half of what I managed to accomplish (for the record, I was 157 two days ago).  Yes, I know that the majority of this is water, as evidenced by my loss of two of these pounds yesterday, but it still sucks.  I failed and now I'm starting over again.  I know this is why I won't ever commit to strict Whole30 or something like that.  I know I can't do it and then every slip-up will send me into a self-hate spiral.  Proof positive this weekend.

I don't totally hate myself but I'm definitely not happy.

Back to square one.

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Weigh In Wednesday: downward trend

Whoa...I got so busy at work today that I totally forgot to post this.  Yep, I've managed to lose just over 5 pounds in the first week of low-carb.  I know it's all water at this point, but it's nice to see the downward trend and to be below 155 again.  Maybe eventually I'll even see the low 140s (although at this point I don't have a goal weight in mind).

I have to admit, what I've been eating the past week or so has been pretty boring.  I've made 2 different quiches to alternate for breakfasts because eating the same one every day last week got really old, and I'm having the same basic BLAT salad for lunch every day (bacon, lettuce, avocado, turkey, a tiny bit of tomato, and ranch dressing).  If I've had a few carbs and calories left at the end of the day, I've treated myself to a glass of red wine (3.5 carbs vs close to 20 in a beer).

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

WIAW: the first few days of low carb

After a weekend of running and binging on carbs, I started by low carb diet (I really hate that word but it is what it is) on Monday.  Aside from a little headache and tiredness, I'm doing ok.  The goal the first 2 weeks is to keep my carbs around 20 grams.  Monday I was almost double that and yesterday I was at about 25, so I'm getting better.  Calories have been around 1250-1300.  I'm also drinking a boat load of water and peeing about every 10 minutes. Joy.

I've found a couple really good recipes so far, so I thought I'd share them with you.  Breakfasts this week have been this incredible Spinach, Mushroom and Feta Crustless Quiche.  I made it Sunday night and I've been reheating a slice every morning.

Everything is better with bacon.
Lunches have been salads with a ton of protein.  This was Monday's salad and the carrots, peppers and tomatoes contributed to my too many carbs.   Also, who would have thought roast beef would have carbs??? Live and learn.  Yesterday I had turkey, bacon, lettuce, avocado and ranch and the carb count was much lower and it tasted even better.

Dinner the past 2 nights (because this made a lot and I didn't want to be tempted by the kids' tacos yesterday) was Low Carb Meatballs Parmesan.  I can't even begin to tell you how good this was.  Probably my new favorite meatball recipe.  I served mine with zoodles and the rest of the family had pasta.

For a snack Monday night, I went with cheese and pepperoni.  I need to find some better snacks because even though they say the fat count shouldn't matter, this was TOO MUCH. It was delicious though.  I'd forgotten how yummy cold pepperoni can be.

I think the hardest thing so far has been cravings for tortilla chips.  They are truly my Kryptonite.    On the plus side, I have already lost the 2.8 pounds I gained from my race and weekend carb fest, so my weight is back to where it was last Wednesday.

Do you have any favorite, low carb snacks?

Monday, May 11, 2015

2015 5/3 River Bank Run 25k

Saturday marked my 3rd running of the 5/3 River Bank Run 25k.  For those in West Michigan, this is THE spring race event and is the 25k national championship race.  This year, those uber fast folks could also attempt to make the half marathon Olympic Trials as part of the race.  I'm not sure how many attempted it, but what a cool opportunity for the elites.

I haven't been super healthy from a running standpoint and for the past couple weeks, I've been barely getting through my long runs and my weekly shorter runs have been more walks than anything else.  To say I had very low expectations for this race would be an understatement.  I was even debating whether to even show up Saturday morning but because I ran the Gazelle Girl Half a few weeks ago and paid all sorts of money to run this one (and get the Double Down medal), I knew I would at least make it to the start.  My goal was just one foot in front of the other until the finish line, no matter how long it took.

Not feeling confident about my ability to run, I set up Runmeter to intervals (2:30 run/:30 walk).  I wasn't using my Garmin for this race either because I haven't been timing my runs and it would have only stressed me out.

Saturday morning's weather was crappy as per RBR usual.  Some years it's freezing, others are roasting, most of the time it's raining.  Yesterday was humidity, warmth (mid-60s), and rain.  Lots and lots of rain.  I woke up at 4am to the downpour. Because this race is only about 15 minutes from my house, I figured I'd get downtown in plenty of time to park and get to the start.  Sadly, got a little bit of a late start but it ended up working out ok.  Our church is only a few blocks from the start and we were able to park there and wait inside where it was warm and dry.  We even watched a bunch of the 5k and 10k runners go by.

I wandered down to the start about 20 minutes before the gun and found a few friends in the crowd.  The crowd was significantly smaller than in previous years and I'd love to see how many DNS's there were because of the weather.  I had started my playlist before I walked down from church and tucked my phone into two ziplock bags in my fuelbelt.  The gun went off and I took off running with the 11 m/m mile pace group just a little bit ahead of me.

My achilles was squaking at me but it wasn't horrible so I just kept running nice and easy, with walks just to grab water at the aid stations about every 1.5 miles.  I made it through the little downtown area and into the trail system feeling pretty good.  It was around 3 or 4 miles in that my friend Tim tapped me on the shoulder and said "hi".  He and our friend Joe were right behind me.  I played rabbit for them until just after mile 8 when I ducked into a bathroom.  I was clearly well hydrated.

I hit the 1/2 way mark still feeling pretty good.  Much better than expected. I actually felt the strongest through the hills on Butterworth.  My playlist was outstanding and in this section I was singing outloud to Uptown Funk, Pour Some Sugar on Me, and Dear Future Husband.  The people around me were quite entertained.

Just after mile 11 or so I came across Lake Butterworth.  (Thank you to Pete for posting a picture and letting me steal it.) I had to laugh out loud as lines of runners went through mud and a giant briar patch to get around the massive puddle.  People who went through it said it was up to about mid-calf.  I debated for a few seconds about just running through since my feet were soaked anyway, but I decided to go around and ended up with mud soaking through my Newtons.  I needed new shoes anyway.

We came out of the hills and back into town around mile 12 and I still couldn't believe how good I felt.  I was getting tired but other than those water station walks and my mud trek, I'd been running the whole thing.

Then the wheels fell off.  Somewhere around mile 12.5 my legs just said NOPE and started cramping up.  My stomach started hurting and I felt like even when I was running that I wasn't moving.  I realized I hadn't taken any gels since mile 8 so I took another around the 13 mile mark.  I made it to the half marathon mat and then started paying attention to the intervals that had been talking to me the whole race.  I was pretty sure my unspoken sub-3 hour goal was gone at this point and I just wanted to get to the end.

from Wood TV via my daughter - I'm *almost* famous!
For the last 2.5 miles of the race, all I wanted to do was stop running but I made myself run those dang 2 1/2 minute intervals, even if the run wasn't much faster than the walks.  On Lake Michigan Drive, I was my friend, Tammie, cheering and I went over to get a much needed hug.  I think I told her I felt like shit and she said I looked better than shit so to keep running.  I wanted to run the last mile but even in that section I did my walks because mentally and physically I was done.  The last 1/4 mile or so is up a hill that feels like it's straight up but it really isn't.  My legs were toast but I ran that last section with all I had and even managed to chick a couple guys.  Go me!

I crossed the finish line and the clock read 3:06 something, so I was pretty sure I was over 3 hours. I didn't really care but I sorta did.  My legs were one giant pile of cramp and I was having a hard time walking and I was crying.  Interestingly, my sports med doc was working the finish line and he came over to me and put his arm around me.  I know he was just doing his job and making sure I wasn't going to fall over, but it was so nice to see a familiar face. We walked with him holding me up for a little bit until I said I was ok and he gave me a big hug.  I somehow made it the rest of the way through the finish shoot.

I was so happy to get those 2 medals.  I sat down on the steps of Calder Plaza and somehow my friends found me there.  Good thing.  I'd have never gotten back up without their help.

I LOVE the medal this year and getting the Double Down for also running Gazelle Girl was a great touch.  This is the first year (outside of the 35th Anniversary race that I spectated in my boot) that the RBR has had a new medal design.  It's beautiful!  The Gazelle one says Finish2 for Finished Squared and the logos for both races are on the back.

When I realized I could scan my bib to get my official results, I think I SQUEEE'd out loud in the car when I saw I just eeked out a sub-3 hour finish!  For running one of my worst races as far as pace goes, I'm happy with this one.  I fought for that finish starting about 2 weeks ago right up until I crossed that finish line.

Will I run the 25k here again?  I really don't know.  I think I need a serious running break from distance runs and even a break from running in general.  I hated the shirt this year.  I wore it for a couple hours after the race and it will probably never see the light of day again - it's WAY too big and even though I paid extra for a tech shirt, there were no exchanges for tech. So annoying.  The weather is always iffy for this one but at least I earned a little Michigan runner girl cred back for running in the soup after hardly running outside all winter long.  I figure I have until next January or so before I have to decide.

Happy New Year 2020

It looks like my M.O. is to open this blog when I get the notification the domain name renewed. LOL oh well. I hope everyone is having a n...