Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Week in Review

Wow. I've been gone for a while. I got really busy trying to finish up my thesis (it's due next Wednesday) and my dad came to visit. He's still here but entertained with some poker so I have a few minutes to catch up. So much has gone on this week! I figure best way to review is to just go through day by day.

Wednesday: Weighed in. Result - down 2 pounds to 189 and 1 inch. Woot!

I was so excited to say "hellooooo 180's" (this picture is old). My dad also arrived on this day and we went out. I was craving a burger (veggie) so I had one, but only a couple of fries. Of course I had some mandatory beers as well.

Thursday: Following my night of beering it up with the dadsies I had a conference that I was staffing a booth at all day. I didn't get to drink much water (just one water bottle) all day and I was super thirsty. I went to the gym this night (to train for my 5k) and it was the worst run I have had since I started. I realized part way through it that my calves were probably screaming because I was dehydrated. Word of advice? Drink your water! It makes things so much better!

Friday: Another day at the conference and picked up my race kit (which was actually just my bib number and a pair of free gloves. I thought it would be more official). The rest of the night I just laid low.

Saturday: Race day! My personal trainer friend ended up doing it with me, and it was AWESOME! I finished in 38:46, which is the exact same time as my fastest time on the treadmill. This made me really excited because there are A LOT of uphills on the race, and it usually doesn't rain or have huge wind gusts on the treadmill, so the race was actually a lot harder than it would be just running on the treadmill. I also ran about 600 metres on the track before the race (this is a great way to start a race - your body is already primed for running. Just keep your heart rate up and you're good to go!). I also went to visit my relatives with my dad who live on Vancouver Island. We went to a concert and I did a tonne of dancing, which definitely burned some calories (needed given that I had a few beers).

Sunday: A relaxing day on the Island with my family. Didn't work out (I was pretty sore). I also didn't drink any beer this day, which is pretty big for me. I love beer, but I just had some nice lemon water and I was totally satisfied all day (probably helps that I was recovering from the night before).

Monday: Came home from the Island and did a lot of walking this day. Fun times with dad & the bf. Also had some thesis meetings which went pretty well.

Today: Again lots of walking. Haven't been to the gym since Thursday but it's hard to make it there when you have visitors. I might try to revisit a stair workout tomorrow. I'm also pretty worried about my weigh in tomorrow (mostly because I've taken a couple of peeks at the scale). If I gain I'll be disappointed, but as I said I did partake in a few beers over the week so I can't REALLY complain. But, seriously, I ran a 5k. And did lots of walking and even other running earlier in the week. I've also been eating awesome. Even better than when my sis was here earlier in the month. Hopefully tomorrow won't be that bad.

That's all for now! I'll be back tomorrow to post about the damage (or hopefully lack thereof).

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

One Foot in Front of the Other

I never thought I would be a runner. I've never had any desire to run. Even when I was fit before running didn't cross my mind. I've had bad knees and a bad back and I really just thought that everything would hurt if I ran. How wrong I was! I am really starting to enjoy running (I wouldn't say love yet...we're dating). I feel like it's the easiest way to see how much your health is improving over short amounts of time. The first time I ran it was for 5 minutes at 4.5 (and I thought I might die). Today I finished a 5k in under 40 minutes (and I thought I might die). To know that my body is really getting that much better in only a few weeks is amazing. I can't wait to see how much stronger I get. I told my friend that I would run one of her runs (45-60 mins) with her before the end of May. Setting fitness goals for me is the most motivating way to stay active.

Speaking of running... The way I see it, there are 3 main ways that it can go down on Saturday:

1) I run the 5k somewhere between 38 and 44 minutes like I have in training
2) I get freaked out by all the people and end up walking it in 75 minutes
3) I feed off of other people's adrenaline and finish in 33 minutes

I'm aiming for #1, but I won't be disappointed with #3. No matter what, #2 will not happen. I have a plan to run for 2 songs on my running playlist (about 9 minutes) and walk for a minute. I think it's pretty solid, but we shall find out! I'm struggling a little with taking days off because I want to train as much as I can, but after running 2 days in a row this weekend, I realize that the day off is there for a reason. So, tomorrow is a day off and Thursday is my 'last chance workout' before the race. I'm ready for it!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Sour Cream, Anyone?

I don't have much time to write today - lots of work to do on my thesis. But I thought I'd share an ongoing breakfast struggle I've been having. It seems like every day something goes wrong with my planned breakfast - my bread has gone moldy, the bf ate the last of the fruit, the egg I intended to cook was broken. Today, however, I got a surprise that was completely within my control. Apparently I wasn't paying attention while I shopped yesterday, because when I pulled out the cottage cheese that I bought as part of my breakfast, I realized that it was actually sour cream. Awesome. If you have a good, healthy recipe that involves sour cream, please pass it along!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

She's Like the Wind

Holy moly, I just ran for 35 minutes. 25 minutes straight, then about 2.5 minutes off and another 10 minutes. I also did a 2.5 minute warm up, and went a grand total of 3.1 miles (that's a 5k). I ran 2 miles straight without stopping. And I'm pretty confident that I can get close to running the full 5k by the end of the week, judging by the fact that I didn't die tonight. I am really worried about doing it outside rather than on the treadmill, though. Tomorrow I'm meeting up with a friend and we're going to do some outdoor running together.

I may or may not have mentioned this before, but I work at a recreation and parks organization. We certify fitness leaders and personal trainers in the province. I work with a lot of people who are really fit, and who teach other people to be really fit. Gaining 50 pounds while I've been working there has been pretty embarrassing. I would say I'm without a doubt the least healthy staff person there, but not for long! The friend that I'm going running with tomorrow works with me, and is a personal trainer and fitness leader, as well as being an avid runner. I'm pretty lucky that she's willing to help me get ready for the race.

On a complete side note, the past couple of days it's been absolutely treacherous to meet my minimum calories (1200). I've been eating lots - 3 meals and 3 snacks (I usually only have two snacks), and I still have to have a 4th snack to get me to the minimum. Right now I'm about to go down to the store to get something that'll give me about 150 calories to reach 1200 for the day. I know it could be worse, but who really has to stuff themselves to eat that much? I'm not hungry!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Cool Runnings

Running outside, it's way different from a treadmill. I did it for the first time this morning. My runner friends told me that I should run outside a few times before the 5k next weekend (next weekend! eek!). So I did. I had mapped out my route last week before my sister came, and today was the first chance I had to try it out. I got a little lost. I'm not too worried about that happening at the race, because I can follow people pretty well, but my own little route ended up being about 3k instead.

There were two main differences I found with running outside. The first was that you didn't have the treadmill to pace you. I think I always ran too fast at first then found my groove. But I always started walking fairly quickly after. It was partly not knowing my route, partly because I hadn't run for a few days, and partly mental. The second thing that was weird? People actually do look at you. Unlike at the gym where everyone is in their own zone and most of the time no one is facing you, when you're running outside (in a major city on a main route) there are always people walking opposite you, people hanging out in the grass with their dogs, people sitting on benches. Lots of people. For me, it was a bit of stage fright that I'm going to have to get over.

There are some things that I know I'll love about running outside too, though. It's not all bad. Like the wind; my gym has fans on it's treadmills, but they're nothing like actually feeling the wind blow. The scenery is also great. It's fun to see things change as you go. And then there's actually getting somewhere. There's something to be said for a destination.

Overall, I may not be willing to give up the treadmill just yet, but I definitely want to spend a lot more time running outside.

Thursday, March 4, 2010


When I leave work I have to walk up this mini-hill (mini in Vancouver, the most massive hill ever in southwestern Ontario). The hill used to be a bit of a problem, but lately I've forgotten about it and I don't even break pace when I'm walking up it. But today, I broke a sweat. I huffed and puffed. I felt awful. I was carrying some stuff home that I don't usually carry. As I was having such a hard time, I started wondering..."hmm...I wonder how much all of this stuff weighs? I wonder if I'm close to my former weight right now". So I came home and weighed myself. And I was. I was 210 pounds with the stuff in my hands. This means that me + all the stuff was a measly 4 pounds heavier than my heaviest weight. At the rate I was going I could have easily gained that in a month if I hadn't turned things around. And then I started imagining what it would have been like to have carried the almost 20 pounds of stuff at 206 pounds when I was super unhealthy and my cardiovascular system was shot. Probably wouldn't have been anywhere near the walk in the park it was today.

It's things like these - 5 minutes of my day - that make me see the changes. They open my eyes to the countless benefits that being a healthy weight can offer. Carrying that stuff was brutal today, but it was so much easier than it would have been 2 months ago. This isn't about lifting weights or pushing myself to run a little farther, it's about being able to live a normal life without having to worry about whether or not my body can handle it.

The experience today really made me see how far I've come. But knowing that one day carrying 20 pounds up a mini-hill will be easy? That makes me realize how far I still have to go.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Guess What I Am (not)

I'm not obese! I'm not obese, yeah!

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Woo! This morning was really exciting. I decided today that I want to change my weigh ins to Wednesdays permanently. I changed it last week because my sister was coming into town, but I found that I got to enjoy the results more because I'm not rushing off to work like I am on Thursdays. I also always feel like I'm sabotaging myself on weigh-in days because I'm tired after work and usually don't work out aside from walking home from the skytrain. By weighing in on Wednesday's I'll combat this feeling because I have all day to work out.

So, I stepped on the scale this morning and weighed in at 191 pounds. I couldn't be happier. I also decided, why not marry my measurement day and weigh in day now? I have always been measuring myself the day after my weigh in because when I originally started my weigh ins I didn't have a measuring tape. Today I measured myself, and I'm down 1 inch from last week, which brings me to 20.5 inches lost in 8 weeks!

In honour of my 8 week weight loss-iversary, no longer being obese AND losing 20(.5) inches, I figured I'd post some progress pics.

 Happy Wednesday everyone!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Making Good Choices

I think that was the theme of my week with my sister visiting. I can't say I made perfect choices, I can't even say I made awesome or great choices, but I can, without a doubt, say that I made good choices. I said no to eating when I wasn't hungry. I ordered salads as sides instead of something fried. I always ate the salad first, so that if I got full it was on good stuff and when I chose to stop eating (which I did, almost every meal there was food left on my plate), it was after I had consumed the healthiest things that make my body run better.

Speaking of running, I haven't done any of it. I've been walking quite a bit still, it seems like it's just a lifestyle habit now to walk places more often than taking the bus. Even up the deadly hill that starts at my house - I think I have an easier time walking up that now than I did when I moved here and was 40 pounds lighter. Nevertheless, I see my ticker counting down to my first 5k, and I feel a little tinge of nervousness in the back of my mind. I scouted out a 5k route around my house, and I've walked it but haven't run it yet. I now have 10 days to train for this run...wish me luck!!