Friday, March 16, 2012

Beginning to Feel Like a Runner

Perhaps I should say jogger, because I don't really think I run...but really who cares. The point is something has changed for me. On Monday (3/12/12) I jogged for 30 minutes nonstop! I just went out and said I am going to do this. I warmed up for 5 minutes jogged for 30 and had a super super slow walking cool down. I was really excited! Then on Wednesday (3/14/12) I wanted to prove to myself that Monday wasn't some freak accident. First, nerves got the best of me. I kept thinking what if I can't do it again, which almost made me stay home. Then I realized my ipod was in my mom's car (she live 20 minutes away from me). Then I went to the place I normally jog and there was a couple of dogs loose. Technically, they were with their owners chasing something, but they were not on a leash and I'm afraid of dogs. At this point I got back in my car and left. Then I turned around and said I'm going to do it anyway. I'm so glad I did. I did my normal 5 minute warmup and told myself that I would not look at my watch. I just kept jogging. When I did look at my watch it said 33 minutes. At that point I thought well, I would like to be able to jog a 5k in under 40 minutes, so let's just see if I can jog for 40 minutes and where I'll be at that point. I'm happy to say I jogged 2.9 miles in 40 minutes. Whoo Hoo!

When I finished my legs felt funny. Have you ever been on the treadmill or the elliptical FOREVER and when you finally get off it feels weird to walk on the non moving ground? This is how my legs felt after the 40 minute jog. I was tired, but not wiped out. For the first time I thought, "Wow, I'm a runner." I know different people have different ideas of what constitutes a runner, but in my mind if I say I'm a runner then I am one lol! I don't have the fastest pace in the world, but I can remember when I was struggling to jog 30 seconds. So, this is a HUGE accomplishment for me. I have a 5k towards the end of April (Mayor's Cup). I'm really confident now that if I continue jogging 3 days a week I can finish in under 40 minutes. Today was my rest day, so I'm going to shoot for 40 minutes again Saturday.

It is amazing to me how my thought process has shifted. When I first began trying to jog I hated it. I hated it mostly because my shins hurt all the time, and I would become so disappointed with the very short time span I could actually jog. I had no confidence and I thought I looked like a complete idiot. I was embarrassed to run in public. Eventually, I just had to suck it up. Over time my shins stopped hurting and it felt great getting to know people who are at the park around the same time. I began to get a thumbs up, a smile, or a great job from familiar faces as they passed by. I started to get to know the guys who work at the local running store and they get just as excited as I do when I talk about a new distance. I began to reward myself with running stuff for a job well done (I got new, really cute Sweaty Bands for finally reaching 30 minutes). I began to realize that the only person judging me when I jogged was me. Everyone else just wanted to support me. Now I love it. I love being outdoors and admiring everything around me as I jog. I still have major issues with the treadmill. If the treadmill is my only option I am likely to skip running and do something else (I hate the treadmill that much). I guess the point of all this is that I feel like a new person. I'm so happy I stuck with jogging.

I started with the couch to 5k plan on After a point I stopped using it though. I would get really upset with myself if I had to repeat a week or if the next week was too hard. So, I just decided to do what I could do everyday. I know this isn't a real plan, but it's honestly what I did. I would set my watch and go. By not worrying so much about the plan I was doing that day I was able to just go out and enjoy my jog. By no means am I knocking the couch to 5k plan. It got me up to the 20 minute jog. So, I think it's great. I just had to do something different because of my all or nothing attitude. Anyway, running is great and for the first time I feel like I really can accomplish a half marathon this year. It was on my list of goals for the year, but I did not honestly believe I could do it until now. I am super pleased with myself right now.

On a side note, I have a dry erase board on the door of one of my rooms. I use it for motivation. My sister visited me earlier in the week and this is what she left on my motivation board while I was at work.

Haha! She's so funny. It really made my day, and I'm going to keep it up for awhile. I hope you all have a fantastic day! Remember to reach for the stars, because the only person setting limitations on what you can do is you!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Results of Eating Better

A little over 3 weeks ago I decided that I wanted to try eating better and see what it would get me. I know how I love food and how I'm used to eating, so I did not want to commit to this for too long. Spring Break was coming up, so I decided I would do it until Spring Break started. The hope was that I would get decent results in 3 weeks and it would be enough to motivate me to continue to make better choices. Surely I could do this for 3 weeks right???

Well, kinda lol! For the most part I did extremely well (I think so anyway). I probably had 2-3 bad meals a week, compared to every meal being a bad meal. Let me say I was not trying to eat clean. I tried eating clean one day, and it was just too hard for me to go from eating junk all day to eating clean. So, I just aimed to eat better. I went to the grocery store and I only shopped the exterior of the store (except for my Fiber One cereal and whole grain spaghetti and spaghetti sauce). I pretty much grilled/baked chicken and fish and shrimp. I ate tons of veggies and fruit, and I only drank water. I cooked at home a lot! Frozen veggies was a life saver for me, because I'm normally really short on time. I also decided I did not want to do any microwave meals because of the sodium.

I'm not the best at picking healthy foods when I eat out. So, when I got off track it was usually because I went out to eat with friends and family. I know I know...look at the menu ahead of time and decide what you're going to have. The problem is that when I get there everything looks so good! Oh gosh, let's not even talk about rolls at some of these places geesh! Anyway, I didn't do too bad. I also continued working out with Sam twice a week and on my own at least twice a week.

So, enough's what you all really want to see...results:

I lost 8.2 lbs and 4.5 inches in 3 weeks and a couple of days! I'm super excited about that!!!!! Go me!!! In the past it has taken me 6-9 weeks to do that! To me this proves what everyone has always said...your diet/nutrition is sooooo important.

On another note, I want to talk about a killer workout Sam made me do last Thursday. I had to workout with a deck of cards. The four exercises were squats, push ups, v-ups, and burpees. They each corresponded to a certain suit. Face cards counted as 10, aces were 20, and a joker would double whatever the next card was. By the end I had done 104 push ups, 104 v ups, 106 burpees, and 113 squats. It was so hard, but I felt like super woman when I was done!

Also my co-worker has gone out of the country for 3 weeks and he let me borrow his Insanity dvds. He didn't give me the schedule, so I just picked one to do yesterday. I chose the dvd that says Pure Cardio. Oh my gosh! Since when did a warm-up become so much work? lol! I made it through the dvd and only took 3 breaks, so I was proud of myself.

So, in summary my little experiment worked and I am definitely motivated enough to continue to make better food choices. emoticon emoticon emoticon

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Long Time No See

Sorry I've been away.  I've been so so so busy (5 classes and a full time job).  I've been working out with Sam twice a week, as usual.  I normally get in 1-2 other days a week by myself.  That has really been hit and miss. 

I have not really gone jogging since I did the 20 minute jog almost a month ago.  I do sprints with Sam from time to time, but no real jogging with any true distance.  That stinks, because I was really excited about finally being able to jog for 20 minutes and I just let it go.  I'll have to work back up to it, but I'm determined to do it.  I want to do a half marathon this year.  I'm planning to do the Rock n Roll either in Vegas or the one in Miami.  I'm going to consider it my 30th birthday gift to myself.  I wanted to take a nice trip for my 30th (in July) and I also wanted to do a half.  I probably can't afford a separate trip for each the way I would want to,so I'm planning to postpone the July trip and roll it into a half marathon trip (Sept or Dec).  So, I'll still be celebrating my 30th (just months later lol) and I'll get to check off a major item on my list of things to do for year.

Today Sam said I might have a "come to Jesus" moment, and he was not joking.  Here's the list of what I did:
100 Push-ups
60 Burpees
100 Deep Squats
800m on Rowing Machine
12 Shuttle runs
36 Lat Pulldowns (80 lbs)
60 Leg Lifts
45 Lying Tricep Extensions (10 lb dumbbells)
300m on Rowing Machine
0.5 mile walk to class to cool down

I asked him if I was being punished because I had to cancel my session on Tuesday.  He laughed and said no.  I'm not so sure lol!  It was really really hard.  I did all of this over an hour.  The lat pulldowns, leg lifts, and tricep extensions were done in sets of 3.  The burpees, push-ups, and squats are a little difficult to explain.  Basically, I would do as many push-ups as possible in 1 min.  At the top of each minute I had to stop and do 4 burpees, then immediately into the push-ups.  At the top of that next minute I would do 4 burpees again.  I continued this until I had reached 100 push-ups.  This same cycle happened for the deep squats.  I hope the way I explained it makes sense. 

I felt like this was a completely ridiculous workout and I asked him several times if he was serious.  This was only me 2nd time on the rowing machine.  Oh my gosh, it works EVERYTHING!!!  I was shaking and fell like a combination of jello and dead weight by the time my our was up.  My shirt was completely soaked.  It was weird though, because although it was hard, I wanted to do it again this weekend.  This was one of those workouts that made me feel like I had instantly lost weight.  I'll probably do the push-ups, burpees, squats, leg lifts, and tricep extensions on my own at home this weekend.  It's good to leave a workout and know that I gave it my all and that I completely rocked it!

Oh, I purchased a 65cm stability ball and a 10 lb medicine ball to add to my home gym (which doesn't include much...dumbbells, adjustable weight bench, sit up rack, and tons of Oxygen magazines).  I would like to buy some cardio equipment (treadmill or bike), but we'll see.  I know plenty of things I can do for cardio without having the machines, so I'm in no rush to buy anything.

I've also been making an effort to eat better the past two weeks.  I made the pledge to do this until spring break (which is in less than two weeks) and then take a look at my results.  I'm hoping it will be motivation to make me continue to eat better.  I can already say that I feel better though.  So, it might be a a week or two before I'm on here to blog again, but I should have some measurements to post by then.  Have a great day!

Chris Brown - Turn Up the Music