Category Archives: Health

Springfield 5k!

I’ve successfully completed my first* 5k race (*at which I didn’t have a sprained ankle)! This morning I ran the Springfield 5k. Springfield is technically one town over, but we pretty much live on the line, so as good as a hometown race for me! The race was at a lovely park that I didn’t even know existed, yet is a mere 15 minutes away, nestled behind a few neighborhoods, away from the suburban hubbub. It was so serene, you’d never know that you were only a mile from the Beltway. There’s a big lake, where you can rent canoes, and an old-style carousel!

The race started at 7:30 am, so I picked up my race day packet yesterday to maximize sleep time this morning. I conveniently woke up just a few minutes before my alarm, put on my race gear (which I laid out last night – sometimes I have good ideas!) and chugged a few glasses of water. Even before 7am, it was already warm and so humid – I started sweating pretty much as soon as I stepped out of the house. Fortunately, as I realized when I got to the park, much of the course was under heavy shade. While not much help with the humidity, at least the sun wasn’t beating down on me the whole time!

Last night I made a “Summer Workout” playlist to listen to on the run… I was getting really tired of most of the songs on my list from February! Unfortunately I didn’t realize until I was standing at the starting line, my Nike+ sensor seems to have died! I started (and restarted) the App on my iPhone but every time it told me to “walk around to activate sensor”, it couldn’t find the sensor! I know that the sensors have batteries in them, but I expected it to last for at least a little bit longer. I’ve only had it since… April, I think? So I ended up just listening to the playlist, sans Nike+.

I took off at a pretty fast clip, one that I definitely could not have kept up for the whole 5k, so I made myself slow down after about half a mile (damn adrenaline!) The first 2k was up the long road that leads into the park, which runs through a heavily wooded area, which was nice. Then we turned into a neighborhood and looped around a block before heading back down the road into the park. The worst part was the first 1/2 of the loop around the neighborhood – it was an arse-kicking, really steep hill! Steeper than any of the ones I’ve run around where we live, that’s for sure. As soon as I turned the corner to it, I saw that everyone was walking. I kept up the jog for about 10 meters, but then I ended up slowing to a walk, as well. It was like running through molasses! Thankfully, as we all know, what goes up… must come down.  And there was a terrific downhill back to the road into the park.

I ran the rest of the way back, but on about kilometer 4 my pace was down quite a bit. Then I rounded the corner and heard a Mariachi band playing at the finish line – so you better believe I sprinted that last quarter mile! (You cannot move slowly to Mariachi music. It’s physically impossible. I challenge you.)

Here’s a lovely self-portrait of my sweaty mug immediately post-race:

I hope you enjoy my slightly askew tiara-motif Bondi Band (those things are life savers!) One of the sponsors was handing out free t-shirts… not gonna lie, I took one just to wipe the copious amounts of sweat off my body. Yuck!

I bested my time by a whopping 12 minutes! Bearing in mind that I had a sprained ankle at the one other 5k I’ve participated in, of course… I came in 165/220 overall, and 16/26 in my age group. Not too shabby!

This is the Mariachi band that welcomed us into the finish line. You haven’t lived until you’ve run a race with a Mariachi band playing you in.

The post-race refreshment tent was easily the best I’ve ever seen. Not only did they have the standard water/bananas/granola bars, but Trader Joe’s was there giving out cups of Blueberry Pomegranite Sorbet (yes please!) and Panera had fresh bread and coffee!

Free sorbet? Don’t mind if I do!

After refreshing myself, I headed to the “First Aid Tent”, also known as the “Free massages and chiropractic adjustments Tent”.  I had my regular weekly chiro appointment on Friday, and my doctor said she was going to be at the 5k and to stop by for a free adjustment! I was a little nervous since I was all sweaty and gross, but she was fabulous and professional as always. And she had her adorable chihuahua Lily with her, too! No picture of the pup, unfortunately… 🙂

Overall, the race was a HUGE hit. It was the first annual, and I am already looking forward to next year’s. And I will definitely be back to the park before then! I gotta get out on that lake!

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Get out the wet noodle. And a peace offering. ANNND some big news!

I’m a bad, bad blogger! I don’t even know the date of my last post. I don’t want to know. It’s been much too long. All my online time has been spent keeping up with all the other AWESOME weight loss/health bloggers out there… seriously, I couldn’t do it without them. So many inspiring people… Roni (who has a FABulous new haircut!), Jen, Tony, Jack Sh*t, Mary, Steve, Brandi, Jenna, Rachel, Sheryl, Tricia, TJ… I KNOW I’m forgetting people… but seriously, I could not do this on my own. The health/weight loss blogosphere is so powerful and amazing. I feel bad that I can’t even keep my little sliver up!

(Oh, and can I tell you how much I LOVE LOVE LOVE Jack Sh*t’s W.I.D.T.H. posts?? I promise I’ll send a card in soon!)

I’ll be honest, the last few weeks have been a serious battle. By the grace of whatever deity you believe in, I’ve managed to keep losing, but barely. I’ve been dealing with some chronic injuries, so my workouts haven’t been ideal, plus dealing with some other health stuff, project changes at work, tons of work around the house, and everyone I’ve ever met having a baby. I’ve been exhausted, which has all but killed my motivation, and I am literally fighting off the urge to binge every. single. day.

Excuses, excuses. I know! But, I’ve managed to cling to my program by the barest of threads, which unfortunately meant letting the blot posts go by the wayside for awhile. I hope you won’t hold it against me – I need your support now more than ever! As a peace offering, I’ve posted some Comparison Photos for your viewing… pleasure? I’ve also registered for another 5k on June 6. After the sprained ankle debacle, I figure I can’t do much worse… and I’ve made a super-short term goal of getting to 50 lbs lost by my cousin’s wedding on June 18. 6.7 lbs to go, in just under 4 weeks. Might be a stretch, but I’m hoping it’ll keep me on track.

ANNNNNND (this is the last AND, really) I registered for a 10k! In October! It’s the Marine Corps Marathon 10k… the route is partially along the marathon route. It’s a HUGE deal here in DC, the biggest local marathon, so there will be a ton of people cheering and swag and a gorgeous course and ME! RUNNING! A 10K! So… I really gotta figure out some of these aches and pains and get on the training. Calling the orthopedist tomorrow!

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Having a Skinny Day!

I walked into the bathroom at work today and literally stopped in my tracks when I saw myself in the mirror. I looked SKINNY! There was a waist, or the beginnings of one. The rolls didn’t seem enormous. I had on a dress that I hadn’t worn in years – size 14. Yesterday I bought a new pair of jeans at Old Navy – also a size 14! AND on top of all that… it was a good hair day 🙂

I don’t remember the last time I had a “skinny” day. I have lots of “fat” days. And the rest are just kind of average. I know, I know, fat is not a feeling. But you know I’d be lying if I said I didn’t feel it sometimes. After seeing my reflection, I noticed that I walked a little taller, spoke with a little more force, was overall more confident. It was great, but at the same time, I couldn’t help but think, shouldn’t I be able to be that confident ALL the time? Should my confidence be so affected by whether I FEEL skinny? I think that means I still have some work to do, emotionally.

But, not gonna lie. Skinny felt good. I took a quick photo with my phone in the mirror at the gym to commemorate. And then I went and swam for 45 minutes! (Don’t mind the wrap on the bum ankle…)

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My First 5k!

Some photos from my first 5k – the Race for Hope DC! It was so well organized, there were a TON of people there! Before the race, they had all of the survivors of brain cancer/brain tumors walk past all the runners to the starting line, it was really touching. I am sure that some day Jackson will be among those survivors!

Here’s a view of the crowd from the starting line. If you squint, you can see the Capital building!

Here I am! It was so humid that my hair was frizzy before we even started running.

With my friend Mary who was nice enough to get up early and run with me! Mary’s been running a bit longer than I have, she just ran the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler last month. She was also nice enough to go slooooowly and stay with me and my bum ankle!

I managed to run about half of the race, but after that my ankle hurt way too much, and I kind of hobbled the rest of the way. But, I made it across the finish line!  I won’t embarass myself by disclosing my time… suffice it to say that it was much slower than I’ve been running 5ks around the neighborhood recently. Oh well! Hopefully my ankle will heal quickly and I can run another race soon. There’s one right down the street on June 6! 🙂

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SO SAD!

As you may know, on Sunday I am supposed to run in my FIRST EVER 5k race! That I’ve been training for since JANUARY!

But.

It is not to be.

I fell and sprained my ankle while gardening this afternoon. The same ankle I sprained (much worse) last May that had me laid up all summer.

Now I feel like this:

I am a sad, sad, sad blogger. Not only can I not run in my 5k on Sunday, but I can’t exercise at ALL. Well, I guess I can do sit-ups. How fast do I have to do sit-ups to get a good cardio workout?

The only plus that has come of this is that I realized in the past I would have turned RIGHT to the pantry to soothe my sorrows… and I have NO desire to do that! (Though I did weep into a glass of red wine. Just one though.)

So, maybe some of my new habits are sticking! I just hope my ankle heals before I get completely out of running shape and I have to start ALL OVER again. That would make me an even sadder blogger.

At least my wonderful hubby made some delicious black bean and salmon tostadas for us for dinner! And now he has gone to retrieve us a movie from the Red Box. So the weekend isn’t a total wash.

I’m going to the chiropractor tomorrow (previously scheduled appointment). I wonder if they treat ankle sprains?

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Finally figured it out

The NikePlus, that is. I had two runs disappear into the ether before I could get one on my NikePlus account to stick! But, here’s the big winner, from this morning:

I ran a 5k in under 35 minutes! I felt really good until about the last 1/2 mile, which was this long steady incline and just killed me. Luckily there’d been some downhill parts earlier in the run, so I think my pace averaged out pretty well. I hope I can match that pace at the race next week. I’ve never had to run in a crowd, so I don’t know how that’ll go… for those of you that run races, do you find that slows you down? I also know that I’m not going to be anywhere near the front of the pack off the start, so that’ll add some time/distance to the total. We’ll see. At least I know I can do it!

If I can just rant for a moment. I know that lots of us with weight issues have complicated relationships with family members about our weight. For me it’s my mom. She has a naturally slender build and just never ate a lot while I was growing up (I think she had a disordered relationship with food, which I’m sure had an effect but I don’t fully grasp it). She had 4 kids in 10 years and is to this day a size 4/6. She was never able to understand why losing weight was difficult for my father (whose build I got) and me. She would say things like “it’s just calories in versus calories out, eat less, what’s so hard about that?”

I remember her making comments about my size when I was in junior high and high school – when I never weighed more than about 155 lbs.  I was always on the high end of healthy weight for my height, but not overweight. I have my Dad’s Italian genes – very curvy/filled out and voluptuous. For a long time I thought I was fat all those years. Only recently looking at photos from then have I realized that I wasn’t.  However, I constantly heard things like, “that dress would look much better if you just lost 5 lbs” or “do you really need all that food on your plate?” Eventually, you start to believe it.  I think the main reason I gained a lot of weight in college and after is that my fat was a self-fulfilling prophecy. I believed I was fat, so I acted like I was fat, so I became fat. There were definitely other family dynamics at work, as well, which are for another post/therapy session. Suffice it to say, I didn’t feel like I could get attention any other way than by having a weight issue. I felt like I wasn’t good enough at anything to get positive attention, so my weight was my way of “acting out”, just like some kids get into drinking or drugs or sex for attention. I got into food.

This is all a VERY long introduction to my current beef with my mother. You’d think, after all these years, she’d be ecstatic that I’m finally losing weight and getting in shape. So last weekend I was telling her about my 5k, and giving her the pertinent info (when, where) and she says “Oh, that’s pretty early on a Sunday morning, I don’t think I’m going to make it.” ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Every time I think I’ve come around from needing her approval she proves me wrong. I can’t even begin to count the times she went somewhere at an inconvenient time for my brother’s baseball tournaments. It’s like nothing I ever do is enough. She’ll never be proud of me for just doing my best. I spent four years in therapy during college trying to come to terms with it and learning how to not require her approval to live my life. And I’ve gotten a lot better, I have a handle on it in every area but this one. I have to get over it. But I can’t.

So that’s that.

End rant.

In related news, I have an appointment with a new shrink on Monday.

Wish me luck at WI tomorrow morning!

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T-2 Weeks!

I’m running my first 5k in exactly TWO WEEKS from today! Ahhh! I’ve run the full distance about three times now, so I know I CAN do it, I just have no idea how the variables will affect me… what if it’s pouring rain or blisteringly hot? How well will I run in an enormous pack of people? What if I’m having an “off” running day? What if my allergies flare up? I guess I just have to trust that I can run the distance and try to let everything else sort itself out. A friend of mine who has been running for a few years now (she just ran the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler!) is going to run with me, so I think having the encouragement will be good. I’m hoping to get 2 or 3 more practice 5ks in before the big day. I really have to work on weaning myself from the treadmill, too!

In OTHER news, today is weigh in day and I was down… 4.6 lbs! That’s my biggest loss since my first week on plan! I think most of it has to do with the fact that I was sick all week (two days I didn’t eat all my points) but I’ll take it! Hopefully it’ll stick. It ALSO means that I am just shy of 10 lbs from not being obese anymore! 9.9 to be exact… And even better, only 5lbs to go to weigh less than my hubby 😉

Off to have some breakfast and then go for a run! Hope everyone else is having a good Sunday. I’ll try to be better about posting this week

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