Thursday, May 27, 2010
When my kids (usually Charlie) has a medical scare I realize that I take them for granted too. If I can't reach Chuck and start to worry that maybe he got in a wreck or something, I realize that I take him for granted.
I wake up each morning. I expect to wake up each morning as healthy (or better) than when I went to sleep. Then sometimes something happens to remind us of how precious each day really is. It reminds us how fortunate we are to have our families. Yesterday, I had one of those reminders.
Wednesday promised to be another packed day of activities. I planned to run early but by the time I got myself awake and together it was already reaching the temperature of Hades. I got the kids fed and started school. Almost as soon as we started it was time to go to a special 4H meeting where we would learn about chickens. I love chickens. :)
On the way to the chicken place, we passed through a neighborhood where a lady lived who had taught me about raw foods. Can we have a little flashback here? *cue foggy flashback memories*
As a fluffy girl, I've tried just about all of the weight loss gimmicks out there. One that I was introduced to a few years ago was raw foods. The idea is that you eat fruits and veggies and nuts and seeds in their raw form so that you get their enzymes which heat destroys. You will lose weight, feel great, and look years younger. Right?
A sweet lady named Anna Tipps taught a class for us and some friends and showed us how to do this. I got to know Anna through emails, phone calls, and talking to her in person. She was a busy mom of 4 and lived at a beautiful home in the country. Eventually she started a raw foods magazine called Purely Delicious. Not only did she do all of this but she was a photographer. Anna is just someone you love. She always has a smile. Unfortunately, raw foods did not help me lose weight and I craved cooked foods all of the time. But I did feel pretty fabulous eating raw foods! And I collected a variety of gadgets for preparing raw goodies. Eventually Anna and I lost contact.
*Flash forward to yesterday* While driving near Anna's neighborhood I thought about her. We hadn't talked in about 3 or 4 years so I decided to check in on her web site and see what she was up to. That's when I got the big reminder that life is so precious. Anna had passed away January 31, 2010 after a battle with breast cancer. I had no idea. It hit me pretty hard. She left behind a hudband and four young children. She tried so hard to eat only organic, raw foods and tried to make the healthiest choices but in the end she still got breast cancer. It sucks!
I did take it pretty hard last night. If any good can come out of something so tragic it's that I look at my family and my own life in a different light. Every single day is so precious and a chance to learn more and experience more. And each day I get to hug my kids and my sweet hubby and tell them how much I love them.
Anna was such a sweet, loving lady. I wish you could have met her.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
My mom came for a visit on May 14th. While we were talking she told me that while she was cutting my grandmother's hair (her MIL), the old coot reached over with a finger and poked her belly fat then shook her head in disgust. Then she asked my mom if I had gained weight too. My mom said, "No. She runs a lot and runs 5Ks." Then my grandmother says, "But is she fat?"
I haven't seen my grandmother in years. She has never been my biggest fan and it used to bother me as a kid. She would do things to make sure I knew that she didn't like me. For instance, at Christmas she would give all of the grandkids some money but leave me out. On purpose! She would also make comments from time to time. And it hurt.
What's weird is that her other granddaughter (my half sister) is overweight but that's ok. She likes her.
Mean people suck!!!
The whole thing messed with my head a little and brought back a grab bag of emotions and insecurities. I stopped wearing my bodybugg, stopped counting calories, stopped running and stopped caring for about a week. I was in my own little depression.
Chuck, my biggest support, made a comment before we went to sleep one night and it really brought me back around: "Please don't give up." Something about the way he said it. It kind of snapped me out of my little funk and helped me come back to myself.
I'm glad I took that time off from running now because the back of my knee is no longer hurting. Yeah! At least some good did come out of it. :)
I'm back to wearing the bodybugg and running now. Sorry for the little disappearing act and little pity party episode. Why are relatives so good at messing with our minds?
Here are a few things that have happened since I last posted:
*Mother and niece and nephew came for a weekend visit
*Rachel baked a birthday cake for niece with a shih tzu on it
*started the Houston Nature Challenge at the kickoff at Discovery Green on a rainy Saturday
Thursday, May 13, 2010
It's so much fun finding free food within walking distance of your home. My minions working for me. Pick faster!Not only did we find blackberries but pretty flowers and:It was a hot day so on the way back home we stopped by the "lake" to rest.While resting we had a ladybug visitor.The bounty:
The results:So delicious! Served with a little Blue Bell Vanilla Bean ice cream while it's still warm from the oven. mmmmm. Can't be beat.
This is a great cobbler. You can get the recipe here. I only used 3 Tbs. of melted light stick butter. Also added a sprinkle or two of cinnamon and a little vanilla.
Today is my "off" day from running but I am still supposed to take a walk per my schedule. The kids had a class at the Museum of Natural Science in Houston so while they were busy in there I took a walk around Hermann Park. Enjoyed the day and watched families have picnics while squirrels and birds tried to steal their food. Also found a couple of geocaches hidden in the park.
Pretty views.Setting up for some fancy shmancy affair complete with elegantly set tables, a stage, fans, and a full bar. Why wasn't I invited?!Time to head back to the museum to get the kids. It was so nice that I hated to leave.
Picked up the kiddos from class and headed to the ticket booth to get our parking pass. Members only pay $5 but when I reached for my wallet it was gone!! I must have left it at home. I found a credit card in my purse. What do you mean it's declined???!!! Expired. Crap!
Went to the van and scraped up all of the loose change I could find. Just barely over $3. Where would I get the extra money?! No money. No ID. No debit card.
We were about to start searching through water fountains and/or begging for money when I found an old gift debit card from our utility company. I quickly got on my phone and found that the balance was $2.05. Disaster averted! Whew!
After paying for parking and making our way home, we had some lunch. Sure, I had gotten my exercise in for the day but the kids hadn't so off we went to a nearby nature park for a walk.
Got a couple of geocaches while out there (found one with a geocoin from Belgium!)and made some new friends: (wooly bear caterpillar) Charlie got to see a dragonfly up close and a wooly bear. Other than the drama, it was a good day.
The calorie burns have been fantastic. Despite keeping a deficit my stupid (*#$*&@^ scale said I was up 3 pounds this morning. I refuse to believe that. I'm exercising, eating about 1500 calories, burning up a LOT of calories, drinking my water. Sodium perhaps? I'm going to try to avoid that terrible machine until Sunday. Then I'll check the weight again. The good thing is that my clothes are fitting better (actually falling off) and Chuck thinks I look great. :) Plus I'm having a blast getting the kids involved in a healthy, active lifestyle.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Tuesday Rachel had her last chemistry class which lasts 2 hours. I needed to get some exercise so I took Charlie walking through the neighborhood by the class. There were geocaches all along the route and he had a great time spotting them. We laughed and talked and the time flew by. At our 9th cache I looked at my watch and realized I only had 30 minutes before I had to get Rachel. Oh no!!!
We walked really fast on the way back and that's when the whining started. Exercise isn't exercise when you're having fun but as soon as the fun ends the whining starts. Charlie acted like he was about to die but as soon as we got within sight of the van he miraculously was alive again and started running towards the car. Kids. :-/
In all we did 3.78 miles in 1 hour 43 minutes. The best part is that I got to take a lovely walk with my son.
I had a great calorie burn for the day: 2565 My deficit was -1310!! And my weight is down to 187. It feels good to be dropping this weight.
Wednesday is my run day according to my handy dandy notebook. I once again dragged Rachel along for the fun. During our warm up walk we were talking about her goal race (the Galveston Seawall 10K) and I was trying to get her excited about it. She shared that she is afraid of the race. I understand completely. I'm pretty scared of the half marathon. But that's why we train now. Our training will prepare us for our goals. Right now we'd have a tough time finishing either race. I'm not saying it would be impossible but it would be difficult, to say the least.
Monday we ran a 2:1 ratio (2 minutes running, 1 minute walking) for 30 minutes. There was weeping and gnashing of teeth. Today I thought we would try a 30:30 ratio (run 30 seconds, walk 30 seconds) for 30 minutes to see how it went. There was still general complaining but I did not hear "I can't" once from her. Yeah! Small victories. There was a little drama when a side stitch decided to show up on the scene but we discussed that side stitches are really harmless though painful. Deep breaths should be taken, not shallow little gasps. And we worked through it.
The last 30 second interval I asked her to give it all she had and I was going to do the same. It's ok if we have different ideas of what that might be. Just run your butt off for those 30 seconds. We both did it! 2.16 miles in 31.20 minutes
I got another high five and "I did it" from her. Want to end the runs on an encouraging note. :)
I must say that I felt freakin' terrific after those intervals. I could have kept going and going. I still had energy after it was all over. And I'm so thankful for my Garmin Forerunner so I don't have to watch the time. It beeps when it's time to run and when it's time to walk and does a little digital victory "song" when the whole thing is over. Love me some gadgets.
I don't mean to sound impatient but I'm so ready to be out of this whole weight loss mindset and into maintenance. I'm ready to be at goal and wearing the cutest of clothes. I'm ready for this huge belly roll to be history. It takes time, I know, but sometimes I get a little bit sick of the day to day struggles.
It can take me an hour to burn 400 calories but only 5 minutes to take in 400 calories. It can take a week for me to burn off 3500 calories but only a meal or two to take in 3500 calories. That's why it's so difficult to lose this stuff but so easy to gain weight.
The struggle continues. I am happy to say that I've been enjoying the journey to fit. There have been so many new experiences and more in the plans. I'd like to make it as much like my walk with Charlie as possible: I'm having so much fun along the way that I don't even realize that I'm working towards my goal.
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Monday: run 30 minutes at whatever pace
Wednesday: run 30 minutes at whatever pace
Saturday: long run
I try to stay pretty active on the weekends so even my off days have a decent calorie burn.
It's great that I'm working so hard to get in shape but what about my kids? Even though I may be setting a good example for them they haven't wanted to jump on the exercise bandwagon. What's a mom to do?
Here's how you go from being a great mom to worst mom in the world in less than 30 minutes: tell your 14 year old daughter that she is going to start running with you. I tell her it's part of her PE credit. She has to do it.
6 pm Monday
We start off with a gentle 5 minute walk to warm up the muscles. Then it's time to run. I don't expect her to go fast and I don't expect this to be easy so I go at even slower pace. It actually felt quite good! I didn't even get winded. Rachel, on the other hand, thought for sure that she was going to die. I kept asking her if she could talk and if she couldn't we would slow it down even more. Then she decided (less than a mile into this) that she couldn't do it.
Rachel: I can't do it. I can't do it!
Me: But you are doing it. Look at you go.
Rachel: It's too hard. I can't do it.
Me: If it were easy you would see everyone in this neighborhood out doing it. But you don't. You are doing it though.
Rachel: How is that supposed to help me?
(continue with run 2 minutes walk 1 minute a couple of times)
Rachel: I think my shoes are too tight. I can't do it.
Me: Really? Sorry, sweety. We're too far away from the house for me to do anything about it now. Besides, I haven't heard you complain about those shoes before.
(continue run/walk/run intervals a couple of times)
Rachel: I can't breathe. *gasp* I can't breathe.
Me: Then slow the pace until you can breathe. It can be your walking pace if you need it to be. Just don't stop. Barely lift those feet. You can do it.
Rachel: I can't breathe.
Me: But you are breathing!
(run a little more)
Rachel: I can't feel my ankles!
Me: OK. Enough excuses. You're going to finish this.
Rachel: But I hate running!
Me: Join the club.
My favorite is when she'd slow the pace so much that she would get behind me and just walk. Like I didn't know what she was doing! So I had to force her to stay beside me.
Seriously, it was like taking a dog on its first walk on the leash. You know how they flip around and twist and flop on the ground? Then you end up dragging them sometimes. That was Rachel.
In 30 minutes we covered 2.11 miles at the lightning pace of 14:13 pace. LOL
At the end we gave each other a high five and she said, "I did it!!!" She did do it. I think I worked just as hard at running as I did trying to make her run.
Before I'm handed Meanest Mom Blogger in the World award, let me share something. Rachel wants to do 5K races. She wants the shirts. She wants the swag. But she doesn't want to work for it. She feels like she is going to die every time she goes to a race (which isn't often) and then feels bad that her time is so slow. I want to help her feel better. I want to help her get in great shape and reach her potential. She complains that she isn't in good shape (I won't let her use words like fat...working on positive self image) but just doesn't want to do the work. Not any more. She'll be able to run any race she wants and feel terrific. I'm trying to give her wings to fly.
I'm going to have her do the two 30 minute runs with me during the week and I'll stay at her pace to
make sure she is actually running encourage her along the way. On the longer weekend runs she can continue her 30 minute runs until she feels stronger and can go further. Don't want to push her too much.
Time to officially announce my training goal. I'm training for the Galveston Seawall Half Marathon on November 20th!
It sounds like a lot of fun and a great race for a first half marathon. Being the detail freak that I am, I emailed the race director with a few questions and told him that this would be my first race and I'm nervous and want all of the details. He reminded me that this is supposed to be fun. In other words, chillax.
I have 190 days to train before the race. If I can stay injury free it should not be a problem. I'm hoping that Rachel will be ready to do the 10K and earn a medal. I think it would be great for her self confidence.
This weekend will be my first "long" run at 4 miles. I also need to start working to find my pace for the half. It was suggested in the Galloway book that I run my marathon pace for the first 10 miles and then I can go at whatever pace I want during the last 3 miles. I can run the whole thing at the end or just crawl. ;-)
Yesterday I mentioned that I had gone geocaching and a couple of you wanted to know what that was.
Geocaching is like a high tech treasure hunt. You use GPS to locate hidden caches all over the world. I bet there are some right down the road from you that you've passed a bunch of times and never knew it. I had one in my own neighborhood!
People hide a small container (like a film canister or toothpick holder) or larger container (like a locking side type tupperware or ammo can) and place a log book and some trinkets inside (like costume jewelry, little toys, etc). The caches are logged in a database at geocaching.com where you can search for caches anywhere in the world. You do need an account at the web site but they are free unless you want a premium membership (which you certainly don't need to find caches).
After you find a cache near you on the web site, use your GPS to help you locate it. Then sign the log. You can also exchange trinkets. Later, log your visit at the web site.
Droid and iphone have apps for it so it's really easy to find the caches. I have a droid and Chuck has the iphone. The free app for the Droid is much better than the free app for the iphone, in my opinion.
It's a lot of fun and the caches often take you to locations that you never knew existed. Go to the web site to see a short video about what geocaching is and how to get started.
That's it for today folks. It's going to be a busy day so I have to get this party started.
Monday, May 10, 2010
Chuck was supposed to race with Rachel and I but he was too sick. I hated leaving him at home. This is the first time he was not able to go to one of the races as my pit crew.
We left the house that morning at 6:30am which is waaaay too early for a night owl like me. I put on my beautiful necklace that Shelley had given to me. (Thanks, Shelley. I love it!!!) It was so sweet of her to send this. I really needed that little boost.
We arrived at the race shortly after they started handing out packets. Even though there were so many people here they were efficient and we didn't have to wait in line at all.
Charlie's race was first at 7:30am. I only had my cell phone so the pics are not great. Look at all of those kids!!!
What a great day! Chuck got up and made us breakfast. He's feeling better. He and the kids had signed a beautiful card for me. Charlie gave me a couple of erasers, a card and a butterfly. Rachel made a cute bracelet with glass chili peppers and beads. I love my family. :)
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Monday: Took the kids to San Jacinto Battleground to do some geocaching. Texas Parks & Wildlife is having a geocache challenge and has hidden caches at 10 "area" Houston state parks. I guess the Houston area now includes drives 3-4 hours away.
Got to the park and were told we couldn't access the trail we needed because there were a gazillion school kids on a field trip. We were told of a trail that goes around the back of the park but to beware because wild hogs are out there and can be dangerous. Even though I am a pistol packing momma, I don't want to deal with wild anythings today.
We wait until most of the school groups leave and hit our trail. We find the cache in the woods but we also found a swarm of mosquitoes. You had to be careful breathing because you might inhale some. I haven't seen them that thick in a while. I simply can not begin to imagine how terrible it must have been for Sam Houston and his army camping out there.
Rode the very tiny Lynchburg Ferry across the water and headed to Sheldon Lake State Park. It was quite a hike across a prairie to the cache location. Rachel found it without any trouble.
We did notice a small pond nearby that had a young alligator watching us. Creepy.
Tuesday: Mother Nature can be a real beach. That's all I want to say on that topic. I took a rest day.
Wednesday: I haven't mentioned this but ever since the last Saturday of April I have had knee pain on my left leg. It runs from behind my knee down the side of my leg to my ankle. I tried running on the beach last week but it hurt so badly that I was mostly limping. Today I decided to give it a test run.
I got my gear on (Garmin and bodybugg) and headed out the door. I really need to find some other places to run nearby. I'm getting bored with my neighborhood. I need excitement! Adventure!
After a 5 minute walking warm up I started my run at 8:40am. Felt ok on the knee. I was going to go extra slow (if it's possible to go slower than my usual pace) and not overdo it. After a mile I took a 1 minute walk break then started up again. Let me tell you: it is HOT at 9am now! I was sweating like crazy and was sure that any moment I would drop from a heat stroke. Ah, a little drama in the morning. :)
All in all, I did 2.55 miles in 35 minutes. I did have to take a few walk breaks for the sake of my knee.
I love having a log book where I can write about my runs and walks. Do you have a log book? Do you record your exercise anywhere?
Saturday, May 1, 2010
The Houston Museum of Natural Science is having an archaeopteryx exhibit. Last night they had a members' event that had refreshments and a special viewing of the exhibit. There were also paleontologist and geologists throughout the exhibit to explain the significance of the fossils. The kids were enthralled. I think I had my mouth hanging open most of the time too. When I grow up, I definitely want to be a paleontologist!
A few of the fossils we saw: (there are so many more pics of turtles, marine lizards, insects, saltwater crocodiles, etc but I couldn't post them all)
- run 3x a week
- reach 5 mile goal
- track all food
- keep a deficit each and every day (even my birthday)
- cross train at least twice a week (swim, strength, spin, walk, etc)
- lose 5 pounds (more would be wonderful)
- drink my water every day
- look for one new experience
Last month I did not achieve my goals. I got a little lazy. I did have new experiences though: camped at a new campground and did a 6k with my family.
For some motivation I bought a training journal and a daily motivational book:
Please join me this month in sticking to goals. Misery loves company and I'd love to know that I'm not the only one out here getting down and dirty in the fitness department. :)
I've got my bodybugg on and I'm ready to hit the trails and burn up some calories. I should mention that I now have a lovely striped tan around my arm where the bodybugg sits. LOL I'll have to share a photo in a future post.
Have a lovely weekend.
*EDIT: If you saw Biggest Loser and the 5K last week then you may be interested to read the blog of someone who ran in it.*