Tuesday, November 30, 2010

FYI: Oxygen Magazine and Clean Eating Magazine

I just saw that Best Deals magazines has Oxygen magazine subscriptions for $5.95 and Clean Eating for $12.95.

Not sure if the Clean Eating deal is the cheapest out there but that's a great deal for Oxygen. 

I've ordered from this web site before and have never had any trouble.

Always looking for good deals.  If you've found any good deals please share. :)

Three Weeks Down!

5K #21 was completed yesterday.  I can't believe it.  I must admit that I am kind of ready for this to be over.  I get bored with the same routine day in and day out.  I like to mix things up with some paddling, swimming, dancing (though I have the rhythm of Steve Martin in the Jerk), perhaps some spinning and/or Zumba.

I do think this self challenge of completing 30 days of 5Ks was one of the best things I could have done for myself.  It has helped me develop some endurance and the exercise habit.  Both were areas that I was sadly lacking after this summer.

Now check out the mileage:
Don't adjust your monitor.  It really is that blurry.
5.13 miles.   Hold the applause. It gets better: it started raining on me at mile .85.  Exercising in the rain makes me feel like such a bad ass.  It's true.  Here is the only other known time that I have exercised in the rain but it still makes me stick my chest out in pride.

I had quite an eclectic playlist on the mp3 jamming:
Apache (Jump on it) by Sugarhill Gang (Will Smith cracked me up dancing to this)
Bust a Move
Come Dancing by the Kinks (such a happy tune)
Dancing Queen from Mamma Mia (made me feel like skipping. How awesome would it have been if I actually skipped in the rain while listening to this?)
Get Ready for This
Gimme!Gimme!Gimme! from Mamma Mia
Iko Iko from Rain Man
Intuition by Jewel
Jump in the Line by Harry Belafonte (Remember that scene from Beetlejuice?)
Kernkraft 400
Lay all Your Love on Me from Mamma Mia
Margaritaville by Jimmy Buffet (puts me in my summer happy place)
Money, Money, Money from Mamma Mia
Naughty Girl by Beyonce (oh my!)
Pa' La Discoteka a Bailar (great Zumba song)
Road to Nowhere by Talking Heads (such an appropriate song for someone walking in circles in a neighborhood in the rain)
Samba Groove  (another Zumba song)
South Side by Moby
Stayin' Alive by the BeeGees (got my John Travolta strut going on)
Superstition by Stevie Wonder
Voulez-vous from Mamma Mia

It was nice to get the miles in but even better to have fun while doing it.  It's amazing what the right music can do for an otherwise boring routine.  Add in some rain and it's a party!

For dinner I made a tasty taco salad: taco meat, a couple of crushed taco shells, rinsed canned pinto beans, lettuce, salsa, cheese and light Ranch dressing.  So yum and not too bad on calories or carbs.

Hope your day is wonderful.

Monday, November 29, 2010

5K a Day #20: Confession Edition

Sunday Chuck joined me in 5K #20.  It has been so nice having a walking buddy.  We can walk without talking and it doesn't feel awkward.  Just having someone there with you makes the whole experience more enjoyable.

We were both experiencing some aches and pains so we walked rather slowly.  His chronic neck pain was really giving him trouble and my right hip and ankle were making themselves known.  I think running on the treadmill the night before might be to blame.  I have trouble running on those things.  I always feel a little off balance and sometimes the belt slips on mine almost causing my knee to bend the wrong way.

After the walk the endorphins were flowing and I felt great. My hip and ankle started feeling better around mile 2.

I felt so good that I fertilized the lawn and spread a few more rye grass seeds. 

I had some energy to spare so I walked for a little more than a quarter mile at a brisk pace then jogged (it's hard for me to call it running when I'm so slow) back plus a little further down another street.  I felt like I could have gone further but Chuck and I were heading to the shooting range for him to practice.

Confession 1: I've been having half marathon medal images dancing in my head since Shelley's race.  I know it was a difficult run but meeting her throughout the course and seeing her cross that finish line got me so into the moment that I felt like I was participating in the race as well.  And I want some bling!

So yesterday I picked up a copy of Marathoning for Mortals.  It has plans for people of any physical shape.  Walk, Walk/Run (where you walk mostly but run some too), Run/Walk (you run more than walk), and Run.  There are training schedules for half and full marathons.

I'm not saying that I am going to run one but I would like to train towards one.  The book is very encouraging and gives you the hope that you can complete one too. 

After I picked up the book Chuck and I were starving.
Confession 2:  I haven't been so hungry that I could eat an entire buffet on my own in a long time.  Last night I was.  I felt like a bottomless pit.  Food was not safe near me. 

What's the reasonable thing to do when you feel like this?  Go home and make a healthy dinner, you say? Oh noooooo.  We decide to head to our favorite Mexican food restaurant.

Chips, salsa, queso, flauta, 1/2 chicken enchilada, 1/2 chicken al carbon rolled in flour tortilla, and a small chocolate ice cream cone.  Yeah, that finally soothed the beast.  I can't bring myself to even think about the carbs and calories.

Seriously, I haven't felt like a bottomless pit in a while.  It wasn't emotional eating or anything like that. I was just hungry.  Not even hungry, I was hawngry.

Could all the exercising be causing it? Definitely going to eat small meals throughout the day to keep the beast at bay.

I'm pretty sure there was a calorie surplus yesterday.  Time to work it off.  5K #21, here I come.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

5K a Day: Still Happening

Hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and were able to avoid the Black Friday madness.  I was about to pull my hair out if I even heard the words "Black Friday" again. 

I am happy to announce that I began and finished all of my holiday shopping last night on the computer.  No lines. No stress. Woohoo!  I think the kids are going to be excited but I can't share details just yet. Don't want them to find out. :)

A quick recap of Weds-Sat:

Took the kids to a super cool pizza place called IT'Z because I had some Groupons that were expiring the next day.
It was so cool!  Great buffet and so many indoor rides. We had a great time.

Bumper Cars

 That evening we went for a walk to complete 5K #16.
 We saw a small snake on the sidewalk.  I'm not exactly sure what kind it was but I could tell it wasn't venomous so Charlie picked it up and it didn't try to bite at all.  In my area (southeast Texas) all snakes with round pupils are non-venomous. Corn snake? Juvenile rat snake? Dunno.
 Thursday: Turkey Day
I knew I wasn't going to feel like walking that evening plus a cold front was coming so Chuck and I got the 5K #17 out of the way.
 We then went to Chuck's parents' house to eat.  Even though there were so many goodies to eat, I behaved myself and only had small samplings of my favorites.  Rachel made a sugar free pumpkin pie and I had a small slice but left the crust behind. Yeah!

It was cold Friday morning.  Chuck and I waited for it to heat up a little then got 5K #18 completed. Brrr.

That's Lake Conroe in the background.
Time to pack up to go home.  It's bittersweet: I don't want vacation to end but I also look forward to sleeping in my own bed.

I wasn't feeling too great.  Achy bones, sneezing, tickle in my throat. I can't get a cold. Can.not.get.sick.

Got home, unpacked, washed and folded clothes, and stayed in bed.  I could not miss doing one of my 5Ks after I'd come so far but I wasn't feeling so great.  I planned to make up for it by doing two 5Ks the next day.

Around 9pm I was feeling slightly better but guilty so I hopped on the treadmill and finished up 5K #19.  Woohoo!  Getting close to #30!  For a reward: a bike? :)

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

5k a Day #15: Swirll Rewards

Remember a while back I told the family if each person walked/ran/crawled 10th miles we would go to Swirll frozen yogurt? We all got our 10th miles done. I was up to nearly 50 miles. And we finally got to go. I'm not a big fan of food rewards (isn't that how I got in this shape?) but Swirll is a place we visit anyway so why not make it special by earning it?

Chuck enjoyed his.

Congratulations, Charlie.

You did it, Rachel!

Mine: cake batter flavored with strawberries, nuts, and a very small amount of dark chocolate mini chips. Sweet.

That night the whole family went for a 5k walk. We had a great time walking and laughing by the lake. I never thought I'd be doing a 5k every day while on vacation. LOL

Charlie and I raced to street lights. The kids saved toads from a certain death on the roads. Chuck made us laugh. We heard a gun shot nearby. Saw fish swimming under the lights of the boat dock. Watched the moon play peekaboo behind the moving clouds. It was a good walk. We weren't fast but we had a lot of fun. Another 5k down.

PS I think it's amazing that I can sit in bed on vacation and blog from my Droid phone. Cool!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

5ks a Day #14: walking & swimming

Monday I was so sore from pushing myself a little too hard. Or maybe I had sympathy soreness from watching the runners at the half marathon. I tell you I saw one girl stop running and grab her knee and I felt a twinge of pain in my knee too! sympathy pain.

I had to force myself to go walk. I'd say it was more of a waddle than a walk. Picture a duck going for a walk...that's me. My rear was sore and walking uphill and down was killer.

It took longer than usual but I completed 5ks #14. Two weeks! And I haven't missed one single day. I'm a little proud of that achievement. :)

After the walk I put on my swimsuit and headed for the hot tub. I hoped it might sooth my aching muscles. I don't really feel comfortable wearing a swimsuit in public so I wear a shirt over it. Let me tell ya, shirts are fun in a hot tub. They fill up with air and puff up. Some moments I looked like Dolly Parton and sometimes I looked pregnant. LOL

After the hot tub I jumped into the indoor pool for some swimming. Way to burn up those calories.

I guess it all helped out because I'm not nearly as sore today.

Hope your week is going great. Time to start thinking how to handle Thanksgiving temptations.

Monday, November 22, 2010

5K a Day #13

Just a short post.
I hit the treadmill last night while the kids played games at the activity center.

First I walked for a while then I started slogging at a nice, slow 4 mph. I've been sore for the past few days and I don't know why so jogging was a little uncomfortable.

I made it to 1.66 miles and then the treadmill shut off. darn it!
Got it started back up and jogged a while longer and added 1.56 to finish up with 3.2 miles. 5ks #13 done!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

5K a Day #12

I'm in Conroe right now and my only internet connection is at an activity center so I won't be here to post or read blogs as much as I'd like.  Well, I'll probably be reading them from my droid but not commenting a lot since typing is kind of a pain on a phone.

It was so much fun cheering for Shelley and all the other runners yesterday.  Chuck and I woke up at 5:30am and got to Galveston a little after 7. 

We parked and waited for the runners to come by.  I had a poster for Shelley and a cow bell.  Gotta have more cowbell! I rang that cow bell like there was no tomorrow.

I was so happy to see Shelley's smiling face as she came running up.  It got way too hot but she is a strong woman and I knew she'd finish.

Chuck took a lot of pictures.  I'm sure Shelley will post some at her blog

Watching her and the other runners was so inspiring.  It really gave me the running fever. I got to talking with another runner while we were waiting at the finish line. She was on her second beer and having a good ole time.  She said she has a shirt that says "Will run for beer."  That alone is good incentive.

After the race we rushed home, packed, drove to Conroe, got checked in, then rushed Rachel to her birthday party an hour away.  Her cake was a big hit.  Most folks thought it was from a bakery.  I'm proud of my girl.

While she was at her party I went to Academy and got my new wardrobe off the clearance rack.  I even got some Nike dry fits for only $9! They're usually $40.  I got a ton of new shirts, socks, pants and visors and the most expensive thing was those pants. Score!

We got back to the condo late but I was determined to go for my walk.  I was able to hit the treadmill at the activity center for a few minutes before they closed at 10pm.
That's 1.57 miles.  Then Chuck and I went outside and finished up 1.66 miles under the moonlight at 10:03pm.  Even though we were both tired and didn't want to walk, I am so glad we did.  Slept like a rock that night.

5K a Day #12 completed.  38 miles in 12 days.

Hope y'all had a great weekend.  Hugs.

Friday, November 19, 2010

5K a Day #11: A VERY Happy Texan

I am the happiest of campers tonight.  Went to Target's customer service and asked about my lost wallet again.  This time they had it!  I almost cried and told them that I love them.  So no ugly driver's license mug shot.  Yeah!

And Rachel finished an iphone cake for a friend's birthday for tomorrow.  He really loves Apple products. :) 
It says "Appy Birfday"
 I was busy all day so I didn't get my walk in until dark.  So I walked under the light of the moon.
I found that music is great for helping me keep a good pace.  I usually walk/run without music.  I was jamming tonight.

Some songs that helped me keep a good pace:
Let it Rock
Brand New Lover
You Know You Want Me   (helps get your Zumba groove on)
Hung Up
Route 66 (Depeche Mode)  Great beat
Get the Party Started  (really felt like strutting down the street with this one)
I Feel Love

What are some of your favorite songs to work out to?

Shelley is running her first half marathon tomorrow.  I get to go cheer for her.  Can't wait.  Stop by her blog to cheer for her virtually.  Her run begins at 7:30am Saturday.

And Marisa will be running her half this Sunday!

Run, ladies, run.  I'm so happy for y'all. :)

Busy day tomorrow.  I'm not going to post about Shelley's race tomorrow.  I want her to be the one to share.  I know she'll do great.

Have a happy weekend.  Make the most of each day. 

Thursday, November 18, 2010

5K a Day #10

Woop!  "Only" 20 more 5Ks to go.  Then who knows what crazy thing I'll do next? :P

I felt better when I woke up this morning.  No more glucophage.  I was even hungry.  So I made up some of Lori's pumpkin custard oats.  Guys, the smell of this cooking makes the whole house smell edible.  My stomach started growling and as soon as it was ready I dove in.  I totally forgot to take a picture of it.

It was very good and very filling.  I could not finish all of mine.  I added some sweetener because I like my oatmeal sweet.  If you like pumpkin, I think you'll like this.  Good carb/protein ratio too....if you worry about that sort of thing.

Before I talk about my walk I have to tell you about my trip to Academy last night.  Shelley had mentioned some great deals she found so I went to look for some myself.

I found one white visor marked down to $1.98.  Snagged that.  Also found a shirt for $5.  I grabbed a stick of Bodyglide because walking 3 miles every day tends to cause some of my plumper areas to chafe.

Got home and opened the Bodyglide and saw that it had been used!  There were coarse dark hairs on it. Ewwwwww! Gross.  So I took it back and got a new one.

So back to today.  Charlie and I went to a park while Rachel had Gavel Club meeting.
 The park has great asphalt trails with mileage markers.
 I set the Garmin to do some interval runs and got another 5K knocked out.
I think my blood sugar got too low so I stopped by a Sonic and got a corndog. Only 215 calories so not too bad.

A good day.  I already feel so much better.  And some more good news: even though I'm avoiding the scale I think I really have lost a little weight. Woohoo!

Now off to make taco soup and chill with the family.

Hope you had a terrific Thursday.  Hang in there.  Friday's almost here.

Wicked Texans

Wouldn't it be so much fun to get together and have some coffee and go see Wicked together in San Antonio?  I think so!

I'm going to send you straight over to Anne's blog (Carb Tripper) for the details.

So, do you wanna go?  Come on!  It'll be fun.  Even if you don't want to see Wicked you can still come for some coffee. :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

5K a Day #9

Do you mind if I whine a little?  Just a little.

OK.  The glucophage is making me feel terrible. Spaced out. Muscle weakness.  Headache.  Stomach problems.  Tired. Trouble concentrating.  Nausea. Chest tightness. I'm not me.

Today I felt terrible but I kept my commitment to complete the 5K.  I had planned to run a mile of it but with all of the issues I'm having at the moment I decided to just walk. 

I hate complaining but it was not fun.  I started feeling extremely weak and lightheaded then sweating profusely around 1.5 miles.  Fortunately I was able to finish and make it back home before my stomach went bad on me again.
Even then I was able to walk faster than I ran my first 5K.  How about that?! :)

As far as the medicine goes, I'm not going to take it anymore.  I'm going to try to control this insulin resistance with diet and exercise.  Don't worry. I called and left a message with my doctor.  I just can't go on feeling like this especially when I was feeling so good before.  The thyroid meds have definitely helped though.

Yeah, I'm not feeling like myself but I'm confident that:
  • I'll be running again
  • I'll lose this weight
  • I'll have energy
  • I'll hike the Grand Canyon
It's all good. :)

PS My mom said it looked like I had lost a little weight.  Then I showed her my new license and she said that it didn't even look like me. LOL

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tidbits: Good Stuff and Frustrating Stuff

Did you know that Red Robin will wrap any burger in lettuce instead of a bun to make it low carb/calorie?
I had the Bleu Ribbon burger with a Boca patty.  Not a big fan of the ground beef.  Instead of fries I had a salad.

It was good but very messy.  Do you know any other places that do that?

And, just to keep life interesting, my wallet has vanished. *Poof* Gone.  Did not leave a forwarding address.  Did not say goodbye.

Frantically I searched the house.  I actually burned quite a few calories in my search.  No wallet.

So much gone all at once.  I think I squirted a tear or two.  I may have even been irritable with the kids.

Went to the DMV. Got there 30 minutes before closing.  They would replace my license but they were going to have to take a new picture.  WHAT?!

Oh.my.dear.god.  I had not showered since my walk. Hair messed up. No makeup.  Puffy eyes because my medicine is making me feel like crap.  3 years I have to live with this.  Chuck suggested I pay the $11 and go get a different one made.

I didn't know I'd need a new picture.  I thought they had the old one on file.  $*(&$%!!

Tomorrow is a new day. :)

5K a Day #8

Walked the whole thing with the kids.  I'm glad today was not a run day because the wind was blowing hard.

Glad it's done.  Still having tummy issues so today was a little bit of a challenge.  It's worth it.

Thanks to Helen for teaching me news tricks for my Garmin. In case you did not know, she is the local guru in Bloggersville when it comes to Garmin knowledge. She programmed hers to make coffee for her.  Hers gets up in the morning, goes for a run, and tells her how she did.  That's how good she can work a Garmin.  True.

Tales from the Scale: I've decided not to weigh myself until I've finished my 30 Days of 5Ks Challenge.
My mother, on the other hand, has lost 12 pounds by walking 1 mile each day and following the guidelines in the Insulin Resistance Diet book.  It's easy to follow (pair carbs with protein, no more than 30g of carbs per meal, some carbs don't count, etc)  I'm starting to seriously follow it. Especially since my doctor says it works so well.
Go, Mom!

Don't Wanna

Going for my 5K walk now.  I really don't want to but you know....you make a promise to yourself in front of witnesses and Guilt shows up to the party if you even think of backing out.

Vaseline for chafed spot from yesterday...check
grumpy attitude.....check check check

Monday, November 15, 2010

5K a Day #7: It's Kind of a Big Deal for Me

The morning was overcast and kind of cool.  Day 7 of the 5K challenge was waiting patiently for me to strap on my Bodybugg, Bodybugg display, and Garmin.

I walked for a while then the Garmin scared the hell out of me by ringing bells to let me know that I had reached mile 1.  Come on, Garmigon. I was in deep thought.

I decided to run that next mile without stopping.  I could immediately feel my muscles tense and thoughts started going through my mind: can I do this?  When's the last time you ran a mile?  How about a half mile and just build up to the mile later?

I took a deep breath and told myself: this is not a race.  There are no time goals.  No one is watching you.  It's just you and the track. Take your time and enjoy it.  No worries.  You can do this.

The mind games started pretty quickly. "I won't look at Garmigon until I get to the next fence."  "I won't look at Garmigon until I pass the fountain."  This went on for quite a while until I couldn't stand it any longer. I had to look.  .6 of a mile.

More mind games: You're passed the halfway mark. Only .4 to go.  .3  .2  .1  *dingle dingle ding* (Garmin signalling another mile done) DONE!

Yes, I've run a mile before.  I've run more than that.  But I had a rough summer. Hip pains. Depression.  Lack of motivation and energy.  I hurt every time I tried to run.  I seriously thought that I'd never run again.

I got some tests done and my problems were diagnosed (insulin resistance, PCOS, and a few other fun things) and I'm on the road to get those fixed.  Now I have hope that I'll be able to run some more 5Ks.  Maybe a half marathon?

I'm not going to get all Pollyanna on you.  It did have a degree of suckiness.  I had trouble breathing and was almost down to a walking pace at the end.  But I did it. Go me!  1 mile in the super sonic speed of 13:42.
And just to prove that I'm still somewhat of a running bad a$$, check this out: I started taking Glucophage instead of metformin yesterday.  I woke up with an upset stomach and a monthly visitor.  Still, I made a commitment to myself so I put on my big girl panties (quite literally) and got outside.  After I was finished with my 3 miles I had more stomach issues (it's been a rough day) but I did fine while walking/running.  I was so afraid that something like this would happen to me. But I made it!

To reward myself for a week of 5Ks (23 days to go) I got two new pairs of running socks.  Aren't they cute?

Hope you had a wonderful Monday.  Take it one step at a time.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

5K a Day: The Zen and Not-So-Zen

Saturday had us on the road most the day. Again.  I'm not complaining.  Just saying that finding walking time was a little bit of an issue.

This time the whole family went for a walk in the neighborhood. Everyone is trying hard to get to that 10 mile mark so we can go to Swirll.

We had fun walking, talking and laughing.  We stopped when we wanted to look in the windows of the new construction homes or saw something interesting (sorry squished turtle).

I remember when I was a kid. Doesn't seem that long ago. I didn't have a book that taught me how to play and have fun.  There were no instructions on how to begin to run and chase each other.  We just did it. No goals. No intervals.  Just play.

Today I decided to tap back into the Zen of running for fun.  I ran when I felt like it; stopped when I wanted to stop.  Probably not the way to train for a marathon but it was a fun way to run.  The kids (who usually complain about running) got in on the fun.  We picked out landmarks to run to and just did it.  And you know what?  We all enjoyed it.  Time didn't matter. We just had to get to 3.1 miles.

Sunday: Some days you don't feel like doing it but you do it anyway and afterwards you are glad you did.
Funny thing.  Chuck and I walked this one together and did not run one time. We only stopped one time when a dog wearing a sweater with "Diva" on the back came running into the street to greet us.  The time it took us to walk this 5K is only 2 minutes slower than it took me to run my first 5K!

6 days of 5K completed.  Yeah!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Inspiration When You Need It: The 120 Pound Journey

5K a Day: #4

Nothing interesting to report today. I did walk (no running this time) my 5K with Chuck and Charlie while Rachel was at a career development class. That girl is too busy.  But she seems to be having fun.

Before walking I grabbed a 6 piece nuggets from McDs because I felt my blood sugar was a little low and walking would only make it lower. The nuggets have a good ratio of carbs to protein if I only get 6.

Started walking in the absolutely gorgeous weather.  We grabbed the last geocaches in a series of 22 that we had been working on.  That's always fun.  But I was only able to get 2.5 miles in before we had to get Rachel.

Then we had to pick up the miniature van (Vincent Van Go) at the dealership for a computer plug repair and some recall work. Of course it was on the other side of town. On a Friday. Rush hour traffic.

Finally made it back home.  I didn't want to but I walked the rest of my .6 miles to complete my 5k.  Chuck even came along too.

As far as the Swirll mileage totals:
Chuck: 3
Kelly: 13
Rachel: 3
Charlie: 9

Chuck and Rachel are going to have to "step" it up.

I guess it's the exercise but I've been sleeping so soundly lately.  I go to sleep instantly and fall into a deep coma.  Though last night I had some weird ass dreams.  I dreamt I went to my mother-in-law's house but she wasn't there and people kept showing up to order breakfast so I was going to have to cook it but if I did a T-Rex that was hunting me would know I was there and try to eat me.  I made a noise and I could hear the footsteps outside of the dinosaur coming closer. I hid in a bathroom and could hear him outside the window trying to see me.  First time in my dream that Chuck did nothing.  Where's my hero?

I wake up then because Chuck is leaving to get his hair cut and gives me a kiss and hug before he walks out the door. He does that every morning before he leaves for work. :)

Weird dreams.

I also got to know my foam roller. That thing is wonderful.  There are a couple of videos that teach you how to use it on youtube:
here and here.
Guess who has made itself back into my life. My bodybugg!  Thought I would start watching those calories again and get this weight dropping off again.

Y'all have a fantastic weekend.

Friday, November 12, 2010

5K Day 3: Shock and Awe

Day 3 of 5k a Day for 30 Days was completed Thursday.

I decided to try adding in some easy running intervals.  Reading about other bloggers training and thinking about the upcoming Seawall Half Marathon that I was supposed to run gave me the bug to try a little running again.  Then "Shock and Awe" happened.

I set Garmigon for my intervals and also tried to set him to alert me at 1 mile increments.  He would only do one. Does anyone know if you can set the Garmin to time intervals and give 1 mile distance alerts at the same time?

With the intervals set, I began slogging down my street.

Shock: my body was shocked that I would attempt running again
Awe: My legs said, "Awe, hell. We're not doing this again, are we? Didn't you discover that runnning gives you all kinds of aches and pains? Seriously?"

It went pretty good.  Nothing spectacular happened.  I will admit that I skipped my run interval if I came upon a construction crew in the neighborhood.  Sorry. You have to buy a ticket if you want to see me jog past.  My jiggle doesn't come for free.

After 1 mile of easing back into running, my knee said, "I will literally tear your @$$ up if you even think about doing this for 1 more mile."  I heeded the advice of knee and walked for the next mile.

At mile 2 I was stopped by a man who was working on a yard.  He wanted me to hire him to care for my yard. Dude!  Sweating here, trying to get my exercise on. Not cool at all.  Then he wanted to know if I had a pen so I could write down his phone number. "No, I rarely carry pens while I exercise."  He proceeded to tell me how his grass seed is better than the seed they sell at Lowe's because when you mow his rye grass it doesn't get wet and pack down.  Instead of arguing with him about logic problems in his arguments, I said "OK" and walked away.  I'm sure his seed is nice but I'm not in the market and he only pushed me a little further over the edge in my "exercising in front of a work crew" phobia.

Here I wanted to go back to intervals again instead of distance alerts.  Thought maybe I'd try running again during the last mile plus there were dark storm clouds approaching. Somehow I reset everything on the Garmin and my distance and time were all back to 0.  Oh well.

I finished up my 1.1 miles to complete my 5k for the day.  3 days down, 26 more to go. Woohoo!

The kids each walked/jogged a mile on the treadmill.  It makes me happy to see them being active too.

And last night Rachel had a dance.  It was a celebration of music from the 1940s to present and the kids dressed up in garb of different decades.  Rachel was a hippie. :)

This is from Halloween but she wore the same outfit for the dance. Charlie is the grim reaper in front.

I was wondering how my hips would do with running.  Well, they are letting me know that they are not happy with the prospect of running again.  They hurt.  But I'm hard headed determined so I'll keep trying.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

5K A Day: Day 2

It's kind of like taking a vitamin: Try new Once a Day 5K for all your health needs. Most people suffer from low 5K and don't even know it. Some have 0 5K! *gasp*

Wednesday was one of the busiest days I've had in a long time.  Left the house around 10:45 and didn't get back home until 9pm.

Rachel had Biology class 45 minutes away but first we had to stop and get some lab supplies.  We fixed ourselves a quick lunch at Kroger. I'm trying to watch my carbs so I grabbed a bag of Hot n Spicy pork rinds.  Don't knock it.  They're low in calories and high in protein.  I like them anyway.  Also got some boneless wings for 25 cents each!

Normally I would not be buying lunch at this early hour but Rachel had to get there early to work on decorations for their dance Thursday night. Then her biology lab lasts until 3.  No other time for lunch.

Charlie and I used the time to get some miles walked and pick up a few geocaches.  I love going for walks where we have fun.  It doesn't seem like a chore at all.

Charlie was finding caches all over the place.  There is a free app for the Droid called c:geo that is excellent for finding caches. Just get a free account at geocaching.com first so you can log your finds.

Charlie and one of the geocaches.
My friend at My Bizzy Kitchen mentioned blood sugar dropping when you walk.  Since blood sugar is one of my concerns I grabbed a snack that nature provided along our trail. mmmmm. Sweet pecans right off the ground. Did you know the pecan tree is the state tree of Texas?  Did you know that pecan trees do terrible in hurricanes? Speaking from experience.
Protein packed and free.
We walked and walked and occasionally we would race to a bridge or a bench.  He won every time. :)  After 3 miles we got a drink then Charlie wanted to play on some playground equipment.  While he did that I walked on the circular sidewalk path until I reached 4 miles. Woohoo!
Garmigon was very impressed.
Literally as soon as I finished it started raining.

The Swirll frozen yogurt tallies so far:
Chuck: 0 miles (he goes to work when it's dark and gets home when it's dark)
Kelly: 7 miles (only 3 miles to go)
Rachel: 2 miles (poor kid has been so busy)
Charlie: 5 miles (halfway there!)

After we all walk/run 10 miles and earn our Swirll, the kids want a half marathon challenge.  They don't have to do it all at once.  Once they reach 13.1 miles they'll get a medal.  Pretty cool!  I love doing this.  It's great to see the family active.  And the half marathon was their idea.

Back to my story.  I picked Rachel up at 3 and raced home to get their art supplies and head to art class.  That lasted an hour.  Then it started to pour outside.  Did you know that everyone in Houston gets in their cars when it rains, gets on the road, then forgets how to drive?  It's true.  All of a sudden the roads were packed and no one remembered how to drive.  I think a few of them actually tried to get into a wreck with me. 

I had to stop by Kroger so we could all make up our own salad for dinner.  There was no way I'd have time to cook because I had to go home, pick up Chuck, then quickly drive Rachel to the dance hall 45 minutes away so she could help hang decorations for the dance.

We get our salads made. I went to the self checkout because all of the other lines were so long.  Then something went terribly wrong. The machine freaked out and tried to process my debit card several times then it wouldn't work at all.  I took my salads, waited in line for a cashier and by that time the bank had shut down my card because of the suspicious activity.  I just needed $11.88.  That's it.  I had to leave my salads and go home.  My stress level is pretty high at this point.

I tried to call the bank but they were already closed.  No money for me.

Grab Chuck and we get Rachel to her dance location by 7pm.  Chuck's card works just fine so we grab some unhealthy food, pick Rachel up, dodge a few more drivers with death wishes and go home. 

By the time we got home I was deliriously tired.  I tried typing an email to Shelley.  I hope it made sense because my brain had shut down at that point.

Last night I did fall into a nice coma though. :)

This morning I tried to call the bank so I could have my card released from the hold.  It's Veteran's Day.  They're not open. LOL!!  Oh well.

Thanks to all of the men and women who have served (or are serving) to keep our country safe and free.  Happy Veterans Day.

Hope you have a wonderful low stress day.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Take a Hike Tuesday

My body may be back home but my mind is still at Garner State Park.  So beautiful there.  It's not that I'm not happy to be home; I just wish we could have a home there too.  You know, my cake and eat it too.  Sugar free, low carb cake, of course.
A long time ago I used to have "Take a Hike Tuesdays" with the kids.  We stopped because of busy schedules.  Well, I've decided to reinstate it.  They need PE too.

For our Tuesday hike we went to a nature trail not too far away.  It's nothing spectacular but we always have fun and see interesting things.
Charlie picked up a very large jumping spider while I almost had a heart attack.  He said, "Mom, they're harmless to humans. I read it in a book."  Me:"Stop reading books.  They're dangerous."  The unamused spider crawled off his hand and nobody was hurt. Including the spider.
We headed off to an undeveloped part of the park that runs near a creek.  There were fish swimming in the water.  We saw a couple of caterpillars looking for a home.  It was in the 70s with blue skies and a strong breeze.  Perfect day for a hike.
Then we arrived at the section that runs right by the creek.  I have never seen so many hog tracks in one place. Ever.  And there were some big ones out there. That's Charlie's hand beside one of the tracks.
Since I didn't have my gun on me and hogs can attack we decided to make our way back.

Plus Rachel's dog Rusty had come along for the hike and he is not the active outdoorsy type.  Charlie had to carry him some of the way back.  Lazy dog. :)
On the ride back home I came up with a plan and the kids thought it sounded great: when we all walk 10 miles we'll go to Swirll frozen yogurt for a treat.  They love going there.  You pour whichever flavor you like and whatever amount you want then add your own toppings.  The results are weighed and you pay by the ounce.

Charlie was all over this idea.  He figured we'd be going maybe twice a week until I explained that each person is responsible for his/her own 10 miles and we don't go until each person in the family has walked/jogged/run/crawled those 10 miles. 

Our little excursion to the nature trail put the kids and I at 2 miles each.  Then I walked another mile when I got home and got to see this beautiful sunset.
In all I walked 3.2 miles yesterday.  My hips seem to be tolerating everything just fine.  It gives me hope that I might be able to take up running (or slogging= slow jogging) again.

I'm also issuing myself a challenge.  The 5k a Day for 30 Days challenge. I feel bad that I won't get to do the Galveston Seawall Half Marathon with Shelley this year.  I wanted to so badly but my hips were killing me and I felt terrible and just didn't train.  With my medicines and new way of eating I am doing so much better.

So I am going to complete my own half marathon (and more).  Just in small bites instead of all at once.  If I walk/jog/crawl a 5k every day for 30 days then I'll complete 93 miles in a month!  It's worth a shot.  I have to walk every day anyway according to my doctor.

Tuesday marked my first day of the challenge.  Only 29 days to go. :)  I need to figure out some sort of reward for doing this.  Any ideas?

In other news, while we were out grabbing a geocache on Monday in a secluded area, we came across this ranch.  What a name!
I guess "Kickass Ranch" was already taken.
And (I'm very excited about this) the kids and I completed the Texas Parks and Wildlife Geocache Challenge over the summer.  Medals were only given out to a few (I think the first 25) finishers.  In the mail yesterday was our geocoin award, a sticker and a congratulations letter.  The kids each got one as well.  We're very proud of this.  Looking forward to the 2011 challenge.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Camping Trip: Fun and Tragedy

I'm home!!  But just barely.  I have some stories to share with you.
Thursday we took things slow and packed up for the trip to Garner State Park.  This is one of our favorite places to visit no matter the time of year.  It's apparently the favorite of a few other folks because it's the numero uno state park of Texas.  During the summer it can be so full that people will wait in the parking lot for up to four hours just to get in.  Yeah.

The forecast on Thursday called for blue skies and high winds with a wind advisory for people in high profile vehicles. Hey!  That's us!  Gusts of up to 35 mph.  Let me tell you what a 37' long travel trailer does in high winds: it becomes a sail.  It was a white knuckle trip the entire way.  Oh and Interstate 10 runs east/west.  The sun became blinding at sunset as it scorched our retinas as we came into San Antonio.  Blind and pulling a sail in high winds.  We arrived at the park around 8pm.

Found a perfect spot.  Unloaded the trailer and went to the front to get a map just to make sure we were in the right spot. On the way back to the trailer we saw 7 skunks!  I've never seen so many of the stinkers.  At least not alive.  I've seen that many as road pancakes but that's different.  One of the skunks moved different than the others and was a lighter color.  We figured he was just old.

Exhausted, we had some sandwiches and went to bed.  And it got cold that night!  The ranger told us the next morning that it got down to 28 degrees.  I am so glad we have a furnace in the trailer.

Friday was cold when we got up but it warmed to a nice 70-something during the day.  I had to go check in since we arrived after the park had closed the night before.  On the way back from signing in I saw a porcupine in the middle of the road!  I've never seen one in the wild before.  That's the weird looking "skunk" we saw the night before.  It was actually a porcupine.  Very cool.

We started the day with eggs, bacon and toast (thanks to Chef Chuck for cooking) and a sugar free Rock Star.  Then it was off to see the beautiful Frio River.
Charlie (10 years old) at the river.  You can see all the way to the bottom even in the deepest parts.

Charlie and Rachel (15 years old) exploring.
One of the first things Rachel did was set up her hammock for some R&R.

My pretty girl by the pretty Frio.

It's so beautiful here.  I would live here if I could.

Some of the cypress trees are so old and HUGE!
I tried to talk this bass into coming back home with me for dinner but he was suspicious and swam away.

We could see the schools of fish swimming in the cold, blue water.

Time to go for a hike.  I waited on the dam for the family to get ready.  Looks like I'm sitting on the water.  There was no way I was getting in that ice water!
Sitting on the dam.
 We chose the Bird Trail to White Rock Cave for our Friday adventure.

There were beautiful views along the way.  More than once we had to sit down on a rocks to catch our breaths.  Climbing uphill is tiring!  This flatlander was struggling.
I'm usually the one who carries the backpack but Charlie offered to take over pack mule duty.  Thanks, Charlie!

More beautiful views

The lovebirds. Smile, Chuck!
We made it to the top!! 1864 feet.  Notice the hill in the background.  That's Old Baldy.  That will mean something later.  Just notice it for right now.
You know, I just assume that the kids enjoy hiking as much as I do.  I've never really asked.  They just grumble from time to time but they also have a lot of laughs.  I think when they get to the point when they feel like they are not going to survive that maybe (just maybe) I've pushed them a little too far.  We always feel a great sense of accomplishment after finishing one of these challenging hikes.
There were no survivors on this hike. (Drama queens)
Made it to the cave!!  Charlie was ready to do some exploring but only if someone went in with him.  I looked inside but that's enough for me.
Then came the fun part: the hike down.  There were still some loose rocks and I did a lovely split on some rocks on the way down.  It was like I was in slow motion but there was nothing I could do to stop myself.  The only thing bruised was my pride.
You can see by the tilt of the trees that we are on the side of a hill.  I keep wanting to call it a mountain but I know I would be corrected.  It's a mountain when you live in Houston!
And here is the mountain hill that we climbed from ground level.  The best kind of exercise is the kind that is fun.  I know we burned up the calories but it was so much fun that we didn't even realize that we were getting our exercise.  OK, there were a few times we felt the burn.  Those steep climbs up did a number on my legs.  The steep climbs down were killing my toes as they hit the fronts of my shoes.  And my hips let me know that they were doing their fair share to keep me upright.

To reward our valiant quest of hiking to Painted Rock, we went out for dinner at a place called The Leakey Feed Lot. (pronounced Lake-ee)  Boy was this place a dive.  The window behind us was a piece of plastic screwed into the wall with Great Stuff squeezed around the edges.
And what kind of food would you expect to be on the menu?  How about chicken fried bacon?  I kid you not.  Well, yes, we ordered some.  And let me just say that what was eaten can not be un-eaten.  We all felt terrible that night.  Except for Charlie, the Iron Gut.  The bacon seemed raw.  Never again. 
That night we made a campfire and sat around watching the stars.  We also had some visitors: skunks!  It only took one to raise its tail in a threatening gesture for us to scramble to safety.  We also got to hear some coyotes yipping in the distance.

Saturday we had breakfast then headed out for a hike.  Stopped by the pavilion where they were setting up for a wedding.

Then we found a geocache on the side of a "hill."  It took some effort to get there but we did it.  The climb to the cache reminded us that our legs were a little sore from the hiking the previous day.  So we walked back to the river. 

Charlie decided to try to make a bridge of rocks across the river.  He gave up when he was giving it a test and fell in the cold water. (Old Baldy in the background)

The kids then swam across that freezing cold river on a dare.  I can't believe they did it.  This water is cold in the summer.  Today it was like ice water. They made it across and back while gasping for air.

Chuck and I decided to explore around the base of Old Baldy while Rachel chilled in her hammock (yo) and Charlie played with some British girls he met.  They were moving tadpoles and minnows from a small puddle to a larger one so they wouldn't die.

While exploring around Old Baldy, we heard some pebbles falling and heard some people yelling for "Dale."  We figured there were some kids goofing off up there.  Chuck and I talked about how we want to hike that hill next time we come for a visit.

We walked to the park boundary and started making our way back around the large boulders.  A guy stopped us and asked us if we had seen a guy in a pink shirt.  "No," we said.  He told us that he had fallen from the top of Old Baldy and they were trying to find him.  Holy crap!  That's 1700 feet up!  And right before the guy had stopped us I had just told Chuck that I wondered how many accidents happen at this park each year.

We were trying to figure out what we could do to help when we heard someone yell that they had found him.  Good!  Except we didn't hear "Dale" answering back.

Then emergency vehicles started to arrive.  Then a helicopter landed.  Then the helicopter left with no Dale inside.
Then a girl fell to the ground and started screaming and crying.  Dale had been found but he was not alive.  My heart broke for that poor girl.  The crowd began to disperse.  We wanted to do something (anything!) to help but what do you do?  I went back to the camper and got some washcloths and put hot water on them and brought it back to the crying girl and Dale's friend.  Dale's friend had seen him fall off the cliff and was in shock.  He was unresponsive and just sat there with his arms crossed. Apparently they had been standing too close to the edge.  Boys.  The girl said that Dale had asked her to marry him the night before (or said he wanted to be with her forever or something like that).  I just felt so helpless.  Those poor kids.  Dale was 18 years old according to the papers.

Emergency personnel were finally able to get to Dale (who had fallen 300 feet) and bring him down where they loaded him in a hearse.  It was a very sad way to end a beautiful day.  The kids who were camping had family from Houston driving there to pick them up.  There was no way they could drive after that.  Friendly campers worked together to take down their tent and camping gear and load it in their car.

By the time the drama was over it was cold and dark.  We went back to the camper to talk with the kids and give them a hug.  We were all a little shaken up. 

We got a fire going and cooked up some hamburgers and hotdogs.  Chuck and I shared a much needed bottle of Happy Camper wine.

We went to bed in a somber mood.

Sunday it was time to pack for the long trip back home. None of us were ready to leave.  I did get to find a clam fossil while there! How cool is that?
Time to leave.  Every time it gets more difficult to leave this place.  I love this area so much. 

On the way home we had trouble with the electric brakes on the trailer seizing up. If Chuck even touched the brakes the wheels on the trailer would seize.  Once he turned on the "blinker" on the truck and the trailer jolted every time the blinker light came on.  So it was another white knuckler on the way home. 

I think that was the tensest camping trip we've ever been on.  Well, maybe when we evacuated for Hurricane Rita was a little more tense.  It took us 36 hours to get to Garner State Park on that trip.  But this was a close runner up.

I think I'm ready for a hotel trip next time.  We have some maintenance issues to work on with the trailer before we go camping again.  There's a leak that we can't trace that is getting part of the carpet damp.  The brakes are seizing up.  Other than that it's fine.

Friday was wonderful.  Hiking and relaxing by the river.  There's nothing like it.  But it's always good to get home and sleep in your own bed. :)

Life: Always an Adventure.