A Running Journal

     One day, my sweet husband said…  “Honey, I’m just waiting for you to break out. What are you waiting for?”  It’s one of the most encouraging things anyone’s ever said to  me.  On May 18, 2011, I decided that was the day. 

So, this is my on-line diary of my journey to break out.  It’s for me, but I’m willing to share.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Yes, I’ve fast-forwarded it seems; I’ve been putting most of my random workout thoughts of recent on my Facebook page:  A Running Journal.  Probably because I was only cleared from my pleurisy after a 6-day round of steroids to start working out again and don’t have a lot to report.  (Thank you, Dr. S.)

Except, it appears I’ve gained (literally, but this isn’t really funny) some bad habits; like not working out with a vengeance, and eating whatever I feel like whenever I feel like it.  I’m trying to get over it and have enrolled in a running group that meets weekly with the goal of running a 4 mile race at the beginning of May.

I’m swimming again, but cringe every time I squeeze into my swimsuit and hear it popping at the seams.

Did I mention I’m up about 20 lbs?  I’m very slowly and painfully working my way back down.

On New Year’s Day as part of my resolutions, I chose the word VIBRANCY as my mantra for the year.  I’ve forgotten this today, but am going to turn up the music and get busy.   Dancing, moving, activity.

In case you need a little shot, here’s a great link:  Dancing Nana  (I remember playing this 45 when I was a kid! )

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Not listing my weight.  I think we all know where this is going.

After my Olympic triathlon triumph in July, I caught a really bad cold.  Then I got pleurisy.

I still have pleurisy.  Yes, I’ve been to the doctor; been tested for all sorts of stuff.

It’s pleurisy.  If you don’t know what that is… here’s a quick link.

It’s painful and anything I do to increase my breathing or raise my heart rate aggravates it.  It can last for months.

My body has to get over it on its own… There must be something my body is waiting for me to do, but I don’t know what it is

So, I can’t do much in the way of physical activity.  I can, however, still eat.  Not that I should, but I can.  I am a CHAMPION eater, in fact.

First I noticed my pants were getting a little tighter.  Then my bra.  So… I started wearing sweat pants a lot (and forgot about the bra).  I’m an athlete and a free spirit, right?

Well, a situation arose that would not allow sweat pants, or an expandable elastic waist skirt, so I bought new pants.  Bigger pants.

Which made me feel better, so I ate more…

I miss exercising, I really do.  Every time I’ve made up my mind to tough it out and exercise, my pleurisy’s regressed.  The Cosmos has me in a vice.

So, what do I do?  I told you, I’m a CHAMPION eater.  I eat when I feel sad, glad, or bored.

The vicious cycle.

Until… I saw a picture of myself at a social event last night… proof of my added weight is already plastered all over Facebook.  Last year on this very day, I was running a 5K.

That’s it.

To big time paraphrase Scarlett O’Hara… “As God as my witness, I will never get fat again.” (Ironic what she really said, huh?)

Sooner or later the pleurisy will release me.

So, stay tuned and I will report back soon.  Tomorrow I will weigh in.

DAY ???, Tuesday, July 17, 20

Weight:  118.8

Wow, I’ve been writing blog posts, but not updating this page.  When I got more serious about my training, and got a coach, I started working out even more than I thought I was already doing, if that makes sense…

Yes, I’ve also lost weight.  I’m actually up a little bit from the aftermath of eating following my first Olympic distance triathlon!  Yes, I did it.

Here’s the story and I hope to add a bit more soon!

Day 136, Friday, September 30, 2011

Weight:  127.5

New territory for this round!  Woohoo.  It’s starting to show, I think.

Day 133, Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Weight:  128.2

It’s been quite awhile since I’ve kept up my journal here, although I’ve been entering the data in an Excel log because… I have a coach now.  He’s got a different way of doing things and since he’s the expert, I’m listening to him.  I pretty much do things for that man I wouldn’t do for anyone else in the world, including myself.  

Trust me, there will be much more about the impact of my running and triathlon training in future entries.  I finally added a new post today, The Second Time Around:  Can It Ever Be as Good as the First? about my second triathlon before I compete in my third one on Sunday, October 2.  

The first month my coach had me working out a lot at my “perceived” levels of difficulty; then, he had me do tests in all three areas and then, as my husband noted, once he confirmed I was healthy, he’s been kicking my **** with more and harder workouts.  I told my coach I thought I’d set the bar too high on my tests and… he laughed. 

Ha. Ha.  But, maybe you noticed I have lost a few pounds! 

More later.  And, after this next triathlon, I’ll be in a different phase of training, so I plan to be writing more consistently.  🙂  ~ JD

Day 83, Monday, August 8, 2011

Weight:  133.5  Activity:

You’d think I’d learned nothing from the day before.  I drank 3 beers at a picnic yesterday and loaded my plate with picnic food.  Then, my husband and I finished off the chocolate ice cream.  Have a feeling I need to reprise the food diary, starting today.

Day 82, Sunday, August 7, 2011

Weight: 131.1  Activity:  Swim clinic for an hour +, Walk 3.80 miles

Okay, maybe eating at Chipotle’s, having a beer, and chocolate ice cream last night was a bit much to celebrate my weight loss yesterday.  Those running miles can only carry you so far…

Swim clinic was good; my coach noted I’ve improved and gave me new techniques to practice.  Yaay and back to the pool to practice.

Day 81, Saturday, August 6, 2011

Weight:  130.5  Activity:  Swam 40 lengths, Ran 3.5 miles, Total Mileage (walk + run) 7.01 miles

Finally, my weight dipped down to a new low (at least for this go round), and I’m feeling long and lean (as long as a  5′ 1″ body can).  The run after work seemed more grueling than usual; possibly due to the high humidity in even though the thermometer only said 83 degrees.  The swim after was the best. 

Day 80, Friday, August 5, 2011

Weight: 131.8  Activity:  Swam 40 lengths, walk 3.87 miles

Day 79, Thursday, August 4, 2011

Weight:  131.3  Activity: DAY OF REST, walk 5.35 miles

Yesterday I ran 5.25 miles without stopping, a new personal best record for me.  My hips did feel sore, but it was the part that will no longer be someday, so that’s good!

And, I ran it with our dog.  I’m her new best friend and I’ve noticed she pays particular attention to my movements when I near the door.  I also swam 40 lengths yesterday, which is over 1/2 mile, so… I was super tired today and with my work schedule, decided to take my day of rest today.  But, my dog is disappointed.

Ready to go again!

Day 78, Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Weight:  131.3  Activity:  Ran 5.25 miles (a personal lifetime record), swam 40 lengths, Total mileage (walk + run) 10.17 miles

I am determined to be in the 120’s (even if it’s 129.9) by my next triathlon; it’s just under 3 weeks away, so… it should be a piece of cake (pun intended)!

Doesn’t this look like fun?

Day 77, Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Weight:  131.7  Activity:  Biked 13.3 miles, Ran 1 mile, Swam 30 lengths, Total mileage (walk + run) 5.51 miles

Whew, it was like a mini-tri, but I had a glitch when a buzzing insect flew under my sunglasses and brushed my right eye.  Immediate stinging with visions of a trip to the emergency room hit me as I jumped off my bike and fished an ice cube from my water and put it in my eye.  I asked a guy walking by to take a peek, but he couldn’t see anything.  I was almost home, so I ran in, took out my contacts and flushed my eye with saline solution. 

It seemed to settle down, so I put on my glasses, grabbed the dog and took off for a mile run in 93 degrees.  It was a truly ugly run as my left calf started cramping (again, this is the second time), I started limping, and my dog spotted Bill, the mailman, her favorite person in the world after my husband.  She goes crazy when she sees him and I have a heck of a time not being dragged by her 55 pounds over to Bill.  Maybe it’s the treats he’s always given her since she was 8 weeks old, but the reason doesn’t matter.  It’s a major interruption to a run. 

My reward was a cup of chocolate milk; then a cooling swim before an appointment; truly, I wanted to do the whole 40 lengths, but ran out of time.  The new technique seemed to take longer today.

Day 76, Monday, August 1, 2011

Weight:  131.6  Activity:  Swam 40 lengths (over 1/2 mile), Walk 3.27+ miles

My coach suggested I try my new swimming technique for 30-40 lengths in the pool.  It’s hard to explain, but I’m positioning my arms differently and kind of rotating/torquing my body differently so it rises higher in the water.  The hardest thing for me is keeping the water out of my nose as I keep my head at surface level.  It wasn’t pretty or fast, but I think I did it.  And the amazing thing is that I felt less tired and out of breath after 40 lengths than I do after my normal 24 lengths.  I recognize I’m not flailing my arms as much or gasping for air as much, I think.

Day 75, Sunday, July 31, 2011

Weight:  132.3  Activity:  Walked 3.67, Swim Clinic lesson

No idea how far I swam during my 1.0+ hour session for swim clinic, but I definitely learned a few things.  Let’s put it this way; the coach said what we did was beginning to take the brakes off.  I guess I’ve been doing a number of things wrong.  So, I think the only direction I can go (like my running and biking) is faster.  It was an invigorating experience and I’m looking forward to learning how to swim better and faster.  Lots of practice to do.  Also considering engaging him as my personal coach to help in all three areas and overall better approach to triathlon training as YES, I’m doing another triathlon on Sunday, August 21, 2011.  I need goals.

Day 74, Saturday, July 30, 2011

Weight:  forgot to weigh in  Activity:  Ran 3.4 miles, Total mileage 7.71 (walk + run)

I was in such a rush to work at 7:30 AM, I forgot to weigh in.  After work, my husband and I went to a movie and I felt so full and lethargic (partly from my day of rest yesterday), I actually ran around 5:30 pm… in the 90 degree heat.  Crazy, I know, but I felt a lot better when I was done.  Also ran 4 short sprints to see if I could run any faster and… I could!  Not a speeding bullet, but I can run a bit faster.

Day 73, Friday, July 29, 2011

Weight:  132.3  Activity:  Day of Rest

Day 72, Thursday, July 28, 2011

Weight:   133.3  Activity:  Swam 24 lengths, Walked 6.19 miles

Why do all my best writing ideas come to me while I’m swimming or working?  Just tried to remember my thoughts in the pool and jot them down in the car on the way to work! 

Day 71, Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Weight:  133.3  Activity:  Ran 3.1 miles, Total mileage = 9.0 (walk + run)

See, I think there has to be a cap on how much chocolate milk one can drink to recover from a strenuous workout or… one will not lose weight. 

Today, I started off my day with a run with a very neat person I met via a friend on Facebook, and learned a lot from her.  She was kind enough to slow her pace so I could keep up (I mean, she did a 5K in 23 minutes or something, so she’s capable of 7+ minute miles!  As we know… my fastest time is over double that.) and I actually ran faster than I’ve been doing; noticeable to me;  maybe not to her. 

When I realized how early in the day it was, I spent another two hours in the garden pulling weeds.  Big, big pokeweeds among many other weeds.

Habits are like weeds…

As I was sweating and pulling and hacking, I realized that habits –good and bad–are like weeds (or vice versa); they sneak up slowly and before we know it… they’re big parts of our personal landscapes.  I just have to be aware of what I’m cultivating.

Like… too much chocolate milk is not the answer.  🙂

Day 70, Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Weight:  133.5  Activity:  Swam 32 lengths (longest ever) in 25 minutes, biked 9.2 miles, walked 5.59 miles

Have decided not to use those gel/gu packs again; at least not for awhile.  I used one yesterday twenty minutes before the end of my 4 mile run and I don’t think it helped me  and I suspect I am still feeling the unpleasant gastro-intestinal effects.  Ergo, I will research what people did before these packs were invented.  I used Hammer’s Tropical flavor which tasted like concentrated cough syrup and I drank it with plenty of water.  I know other people like it,but… for me, so far, not a fan.

Day 69:  Monday, July 25, 2011

Weight:  132.3  Activity:  Ran 4.0 miles (ran .5, walked, ran 3.5), Total mileage (run + walk) = 8.43

One thing I realize… I have to have a goal.  My husband and I finished off a container of mint ice cream with moose tracks yesterday afternoon as soon as we got home from the last Harry Potter movie (We denied ourselves popcorn, what can I say?).  At this rate, I’m never going to lose any weight.  We did go on a bike ride and walk the dog, but then… had more to eat.

My current goals:  lose 5 pounds (really break that 129 pound barrier) for now; train for my next (yes, I’ve said it) triathlon.

I think I’ve talked my husband into a specific triathlon (HUGE SMILE).  It’s a month away on a Sunday about two hours from home.  This time, my goal is to do better than finish.  It’s a bit shorter in the swim and bike, so I’m going to work on improving my times in all three areas. 

One thing I learned from my BQS (business quantitative studies, i.e., statistics) class years ago (which I hated and dropped as many times as I could before I had to take it to graduate)… was that percentages can be skewed in many ways. 

We all know I finished LAST (3 of 3) in my age group.  We all know I beat 3 people in the overall race results.  Here’s what I didn’t know until I double-checked some of my times to see where I needed the most improvement (to prepare for the next event):

I beat 20 (6 women) people over all in the swim!  WOW!

I beat 23 (including my husband (!) and 6 women) in T1.

I beat 4 people (2 women)  in the bike.

I beat 8 people (4 women) in T2.

I beat 3 people (1 woman) in the run.  This is what killed me.  And this is where I’m going to concentrate today!

So… after the run, I called my veteran running friend and asked her how I could make myself faster (not the ultimate speed demon, just faster).  We talked about long runs, tempo runs, and long “licks”… I think she said.  I might have to Google the terms. 

After experiencing my first real calf cramp or Charlie Horse, which started before I even began my run, I did do a Google search and this is what I found: 

Eat more potassium; yes a banana, I always try to eat one a day.                                                 Keep hydrated; okay, more water.                                                                                                   Eat more carbs; with pleasure.                                                                                                 Massage the muscle; darn, the one night my guy is traveling on business. 

Instead I took a long hot bath and tried to massage it; my friend also told me about a kind of “stick” to roll under (and over) the legs to help with muscle cramps.  This is the article about “The Stick”.  However, of course… the one she prefers is an older one, but I think I found what she’s talking about from Dick’s Sporting Goods

Who knew?

All sorts of new stuff to check out! 

Day 68:  Sunday, July 24, 2011

Weight:  131.3  Activity:  Biked 10 miles, walked 4.75 miles

There’s a break in the excessive heat; it’s raining like crazy, which is good, but will necessitate a change in work out plans.  I’ve been given a reprieve on the scales; considering what I ate last night I am humbly thankful.  A friend made a feast of Indian food, and I partook!

Some good news, though for my next workout.  I do not have to feel guilty about chocolate milk anymore!  After I ran the other day, I was talking on the phone to my hardest-core running friend at the same time I was scouring the fridge for a quick pick-me-up and discovered a half-empty gallon of chocolate 2% milk “hidden” way in the back.  I say “hidden” because my husband never mentioned he bought this dietary delight, drank half of it himself, and placed it behind such things as a monster jar of pickles and the gallon of regular milk.  Hmmm.  (He denied it, of course.)

As I chugged down a tall glass, my friend informed me chocolate milk is a wonderful way of replenishing one’s system after a gruelling workout, with maximum benefits within 40 minutes of one’s workout.  Well, I missed that window, but I’m sure I received some benefit!  I mentioned it to my husband, who said that’s why he bought it in the first place…  I guess I missed that memo, so I did my own research!

Well, if I must…

Here is an excellent resource on the benefits of chocolate milk if you’d like more than my word…  ChocolateMilk.Com

Day 67, Saturday, July 23, 2011

Weight:  131.0  Activity:  Not much; gotta get out of not doing a workout even if I am at work.  Walked 3.94 miles

Day 66, Friday, July 22, 2011

Weight:  131.5  Activity:  Walked 3.37 miles

A silent mantra for the day at work:  I will avoid the triple-flavored Danish a vendor brought into work yesterday afternoon.  It is a combo of cream cheese, apple, and cherry.  And yes, I’ve tasted all three.  Hence, the increase of .3?  Methinks so!

Day 65, Thursday, July 21, 2011

Weight:  131.2  Activity:  Biked 3.5 miles, Walked 4.5 miles

Peeked at the scales first thing and woohoo; I’m back on track.  Today is smoothie day! 

It was a hot smoothie day; worked all day and when I got home at 6, it was still in the nineties.  My workout partner was unavailable and my husband had already worked out, so… I was unmotivated.  But, I finally grabbed my bike and set off about an hour before dusk; ran into a lot of detours on the trail because of road construction and then started feeling strange vibes as the trail darkened (vulnerable or something), so I turned around and came home, grabbed the dog and took her out for a sweaty power walk.  The shower was grand. 

Day 64, Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Weight:  133.2  Activity:  Ran 3.1 miles (in 93 degree heat), Total mileage 8+ miles (walk + run)

Yes, I ate a LOT the night before which probably spurred me on to run today!  I wanted to see if I could do it again, that the race was not a fluke.  I even took the dog and because of the heat (I think), she was pretty complacent.  Rewarded myself with a dip in our neighbor’s pool a bit later.  And, a bite of a chocolate brownie…  🙂

Day 63, Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Weight:  132.4  Activity: Swam 26 lengths, walked 3+ miles

Time for a reality check; must stop eating everything in sight.  Today is a new day and I’m going back to my morning smoothies.

Day 62, Monday, July 18, 2011                                                           

Weight:  131.8  Activity:  Swam .31 miles, walked 3.5+ miles. 

My personal new goal is to lose 10 pounds and see where I’m at; also start lifting weights and keep exercising.  Today there is a high heat index; it’s so hot you can hardly breathe in the air. 

I’m proud of what I accomplished on Saturday, but I think I can do better if I am fitter. Still a bit tired, but I did go swimming and it felt really good!  🙂

Day 61, Sunday, July 17, 2011 

Weight:  132.1  Activity:  Nothing scheduled, still managed to walk 5.5 miles.

We need to find a new goal.  My husband is starting to suffer depression; post-event let down syndrome, I call it.  I’m ready to find a new event and start training; I think I need a swimming coach to at least give me a few pointers and ramp up my biking and running efforts.  I would’ve guessed biking to be my strongest suit, but I think it’s my weakest.  Ouch.

But for today, I won’t think about it.  All I want to do is nap and eat–carbs.  Lots and lots of carbs.  Maybe it’s my wily self trying to get extra carbs… who knows?  But, for today, I’m playing along.

Day 60, Saturday, July 16, 2011:  RACE DAY!!!!!                               

Weight:  131.7  Activity:  Swam:  .31 miles; Biked:  24.9 miles; Ran:  3.1 miles; Total mileage:  8.1+ (walk and run)    

This says it all:  Can’t Wipe This Smile Off My Face:  Confessions of a First Time Triathlete                  

After the race…

Day 59, Friday, July 15, 2011 Weight: 131.9                                                                                                                                            Activity:  Day of Rest                                                                                                  Total mileage:  Still managed to walk 5+ miles and did a practice swim in the Bryan Rhodes’ swim clinic.

Race day is tomorrow and I am anything but relaxed.  Again, good thing I’m going into work where I can put my mind on other subjects and not worry about last minute details.  Although, I do have to worry about them sometime; like at lunch…  I think I need a new water bottle, power bars, and maybe a pair of throw away flipflops for the swim area as I might need them to walk across gravel… and experienced people say sometimes in the rush, my flipflops might not be waiting.  Oh, the pressure.

Time marches on.

Okay, after the swim clinic I felt so much better.  Bryan Rhodes is not the guy who swam next to me the other day, but… he has a very nice New Zealand accent and was super helpful.  Of all the people who practiced the swim, I was the slowest.

Day 58, Thursday, July 14, 2011

Weight: 131.2                                                                                                                                  Activity:                                                                                                                                         Swam:  24 lengths                                                                                                                                     Total mileage:  4.62 (walk)

It’s a good thing I’m going to be at work today after I swim.  It will be an imposed rest from working out; otherwise, I can already tell… I feel like I need to do something MORE to get ready for Saturday.  The nerves have begun. 

And they lasted all day.  Yikes.  Already nervous about the to do list; should I put on sunscreen before or after the swim or at all?  I think the underlying cause of my nerves is fear of the unknown and looking like an idiot at any point.

Also pretty sure after some Internet research, the guy in the lane next to me yesterday was the guy who will be leading our swim clinic tomorrow night.  I knew he was all business in the pool.

Day 57, Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Weight:  131.9                                                                                                                                          Activity:                                                                                                                                                     Ran: 3.4 miles (3.1 at once) and .3 more in sprints; the fastest I’ve ever run.                                                                                                                                                       Swam: 26 lengths                                                                                                                               Total mileage: 10.47 miles (walk + run)

There’s a reason the body needs to rest; recovery.  I’m quite stiff and sore today from the long ride yesterday.  Looking forward to a relaxing swim today and a possible last chance run.  Tomorrow and Friday are definite ramp down, relax, and rest days.

I tried a few sprints today to ramp up my speed and surprisingly found I could go a bit faster.  When I told my husband however… he made me promise not to try anything new before the event; he’s worried I’ll hurt myself; likewise I’m not supposed to run with the dog (that I understand…).  But I did promise.

Tonight we sat down and started planning our final approach.  Have you ever heard of Gu or other nutrition gels?  Neither had I, but it came up three times in the past two days from experienced running/triathlon friends.  Click here for more information to understand this nutritional supplement/aid during running.  I really want to try it, but without any real practice workouts scheduled before the BIG event, I don’t want to take a chance my body will react abnormally.  And, I have so advised my husband to do the same.  Maybe next time.  (Did you catch that… next time?)

We also started discussing our night before dinner and breakfast on the “day of”.  So many possibilities; we finally made the start of a checklist and are headed to bed.

One last thing; to the guy who swam in the lane next to me this afternoon; yes, you with the very buff body and the red cap sporting “IRONMAN” and “K-Swiss” and “Kansas”… I peeked at what you were doing.  I mean, I knew you were a real athlete (nice muscles…) when you strapped on that triangled weight thing that trailed behind you in the water; creating drag, I get it.  I mean did you notice I was wearing two swimsuits to do the same thing?  Yes, they were baggy and didn’t fit right, but I think I was wearing them for the same purpose as your trailing weight.

Anyway, I dipped underwater to observe (purely for training purposes) your strokes and how your body moved in the water, i.e. technique.  Did I mention my 26 lengths today took slightly longer than usual as I stayed a bit longer for educational purposes?  So, thank you, man in the red “IRONMAN” cap.  I learned a lot.  Swimming lengths does have its perks at times.  🙂

56, Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Weight:  132.2                                                                                                                                         Activity: (Whew!)                                                                                                                                 Biked:  25.4 miles in 2 hours, 14 minutes; average speed 11.1 mph                                       Ran: .5 miles                                                                                                                                      Swam:  26 lengths                                                                                                                           Total mileage:  4.5 (run + walk)

Four days to go.   The plan is to stay on target with my workouts.  Today, I’m going on a LONG bike ride, then run, then swim to cool off.  Tomorrow will be another regular work out, and then I’m going to force myself to rest for two days before the event.

Everyone says doing triathlons are addictive.  I do find myself wondering what’s next on the horizon.

I did a LOT of exercise today, and had so many random thoughts, decided to write my next blog post about it.  Here it is:  Just When I Was Feeling So Good (Translate Cocky) About The Triathlon…  And, you can hear a really cool song.

Seriously, I did a short “brick” today of trying to run as soon as I finished my 25 miles on the bike.  My legs didn’t hurt or feel like jelly, but I was a bit dizzy and I only ran .5 miles before I changed to a power walk.  I think it was due to not enough breakfast before riding.  Last week, at the in-laws, I had waffles, sausage, orange juice, and more every morning before my workouts and I felt great.

Several thoughts:  First, I’m going to enjoy planning my high-carb night-before-the-event-dinner.  Second, power bars.  Third, it’s true.  I do power walk faster than I jog.

Day 55, Monday, July 11, 2011

Weight:  132.5  (I must be on a plateau; I about killed myself with exercise yesterday in the 90+ degrees; of course, I ate a LOT, and I drank so much water I had to get up 4x in the night…)

Activity:                                                                                                                                                                                  ~Swam 1/2 mile (36 lengths for sure… or maybe 38; I lost count & added 2 more) 🙂 ~Biked 1+ mile (rode home from bike shop with a new side mirror (love it) and a re-calibrated computer) 🙂                                                                                                                 ~Walked 6.42 miles

Today was so hot; it was all I could do to walk the dog and get her back inside before she overheated.  So, I swam.  It was great!  Practiced some new techniques and got scared by horror stories of goggles being ripped off in the water during the lake swim.  I think that’s my worst case scenario.

Day 54, Sunday, July 10, 2011

Weight:  132.5                                                                                                                                          Activity:                                                                                                                                                         Biked 13.7 miles                                                                                                                                  Ran 1 mile (brick workout)                                                                                                            Swam 30 lengths.                                                                                                                              Total mileage (walk + run):  3.83+

Only 6 more days until the event.  I do have a few butterflies forming.  Mainly about getting run over in the swim, wrecking my bike, and being able to creep across the finish line four hours after everyone else!

But, I’m going to keep plugging away, following my training plan and I’m not going to stress over losing weight until after the triathlon.

Nor am I going to try to bulk up, but to be clear, the original reason I started running was to lose about fifteen pounds.  I no longer care about the specific number so much, as I’m seeing muscles beginning to form, but I do care about my clothes getting looser, and feeling and looking more fit.  But, there’s no point in depleting my reserves before the triathlon as I feel I’ll need them especially if this heat keeps up.  Yesterday when I ran, the temperature was in the 90’s at 5:30 pm.  Today, the projected heat index is even higher.

Oh, to be back swimming in a Michigan lake!

Here’s a couple of pictures of my practice route in the lake which equaled exactly .31 miles from the shore, around the buoy, and back.  Different views can make it look longer or shorter!  It felt pretty long, but only took me 15-16 minutes to swim.

The buoy’s right there, that little white dot way across the lake!

My route was from the house on the left across to the beach and back.

Day 53, Saturday, July 9, 2011

Weight:  132.7  Activity:                                                                                                                                                                 Ran 3.4 miles                                                                                                                                    Swam 26 lengths                                                                                                                               Total mileage 9.53+ (walk + run)

One week until T-day!  Triathlon day!

Day 52, Friday, July 8, 2011

Weight:  132.4  (Thank you, a bit of breathing room!)                                                               Activity:  This was my day of rest.                                                                                                  Total mileage 5+

Day 51, Thursday, July 7, 2011  Starting weight:  Drum roll please…..  and hold your breath (although that doesn’t work to weigh less)…  133.9. (a gain of several pounds…) Yes, it’s true.  And so hard not to believe… (see below)  Ending Activity:  Swam 26 lengths; walked 5.36 + miles.

7:17 AM:  Okay, I had a great vacation.  We stayed in a hotel where I made my own waffles every morning (I was fascinated with the waffle maker), and slathered them with butter and syrup (not the lite version for me!), had sausage and orange juice, then spent the rest of the day at my in-laws who are known food pushers!  More on this later as I am finally paying attention to the clock and better get moving so I can swim before work.

Day 50, Wednesday, July 6, 2011  Starting weight:  n/a (kind of liking not weighing in); Ending Activity:  biked 13.5 miles, ran 1.1 mile of total mileage of 4.1+.

What can I say; I’ve been forgetting to wear my pedometer on vacation because when I put it on while bike riding, I get a false reading from the motion of pedaling; also cannot find a place to put it on my tri-suit…

We got back from vacation today and I took a nap and then ate way too much; so glad my training partner was available; we biked to the end of the trail and just for a bit more torture in the 93 degree and very humid weather, I ran a mile.  My husband caught the tail end of my run and (so glad he noticed) thought I was running a little faster.  He said he thought just a few tweaks in my posture or something could improve my speed and lessen my difficulty.  Well, now’s the time, honey; less than two weeks to the event, I’ll take all the help I can get!  On the plus side, I did do a single brick of training.

Day 49, Tuesday, July 5, 2011  Starting weight:  Still not available 🙂 , Ending Activity:  Swam .31 miles in 16+ minutes, biked 9+ miles, ran 2.2 miles, which is included in total mileage walked of 6+ miles.  Another double-brick day!

The wind made the water a little choppy today, which was good experience for swimming in less than perfectly calm waters.  I got a lot of lake water in my mouth, but I’m getting really good at spitting it out!

Day 48, Monday, July 4, 2011  Starting weight:  Not available since I’m on vacation…  Ending Activity:  Swam .31 miles in 15.3 minutes (another new world land (water) speed record), biked 5+ miles, walked 5.05+ miles.

Day 47, Sunday, July 3, 2011  Starting weight:  Not available.  Ending Activity:  Woohoo; I swam .3 miles in 16 minutes and some odd seconds in the lake!  And I liked it!  Biked 9.4 miles (at least).  Ran 4.4 miles at one time (that’s two times around the lake), a new world land record, which is included in my total mileage of 10.02 for the day.

Today, I did all three exercises in my new tri-suit and it went well.  I swam the full distance, then quickly dried my feet off and thrust them into my pre-baby powdered VFF’s (barefoot running shoes) and hopped on a bike (not my bike, but it worked) and rode twice around the lake, 4.4 miles, took off my bike helmet and took off on foot.  I guess that makes it a double brick day!  (Later I coaxed my husband into another bike ride and a walk around the lake again.)

On my second lap, my husband biked over to let me know it took me 55 minutes to run 3.1 miles which also might be a new world land record for my slowest time… so I need to work on that.  As I finished running around the lake for the second lap, I had a funny thought; what if I ran another lap?  That would be 6.6 miles at one time!  Wow.  Maybe I could do a 10K (6.2 miles) someday?  Shivers.

Timing is the issue, but maybe that will come as I try to improve my posture or lengthen my stride.  I do plod along.  When my husband informed me of my time, he half-jokingly said my run was kind of like a walk.  So I slowed down (yes, it was possible) to show him my walk as I got tears in my eyes and informed him I was trying my hardest.

He immediately backed off and offered support and told me how proud he was of me and later offered to show me some different postures for running because I apparently run all bent forward.  I’m open because, yes, I’d love to run like the wind.  I say that with my legs propped up on pillows, totally rested as I write this.  The next time I do a long run might be another story; I think if I ran faster than molasses I’d be happy!

On a side note, after my husband made his errant comment, he high-tailed it home on his bike and rounded up the family so they were all waiting as I ran into home base; there they were cheering for me!  It was sweet, warm, and almost embarrassing, but I loved it!

I’m going to try a new technique for swimming freestyle.  Not having formal lessons (unless making it to “tadpole” level in kindergarten counts), I’m quick to try something new.  As I listened to the family dissect my (lack of) technique, one of my nephews mentioned “picking the apple and putting it in your pocket”.  (I think everyone in Michigan must have to learn to swim before they get out of school; there’s so many lakes around here.)

So, today when we swim the lake, I’m going to try to keep my face in the water more, and reach out with each arm and try to pick the apple and bring it back to put in my pocket.  We’ll see. The real test will be swimming with tons of people all jostling for position at the same time.  More shivers!

And, yes, I had a big bowl of chocolate ice cream tonight.  🙂

Day 46, Saturday, July 2, 2011  Starting weight:  For some reason, I didn’t weigh in; perhaps it was the pizza I ate the night before…  Ending activity:  Swam 24 lengths in 18 minutes; walked 5.76 miles.

Day 45, Friday, July 1, 2011  Starting weight:  131.5  Ending activity:  Fridays are my days of rest until the triathlon, but I wish I’d swam anyway; exercise just makes the whole day go smoother.  I managed to walk 3.4+ miles at work anyway.

Did I mention July is National Ice Cream Month?  Thank you, Ronald Reagan!  I will try to honor your proclamation!

Day 44, Thursday, June 30, 2011  Starting weight:  131.8  Ending Activity:  Swim 26 lengths, Biked 13.5 miles, walked 4+ miles.

Day 43, Wednesday, June 29, 2011  Starting weight:  130.7  Ending activity:  Ran 3.12 miles included in total mileage of 7.56 miles.

Honestly without my running partner, today I would not have run.  Thank you, JS!  I will say this though… even her 12 pound little dog runs faster than me.  🙂

Day 42, Tuesday, June 28, 2011  Starting weight:  132.0 (????)  Ending activity:  Swam 30 lengths, Biked 9.09 miles, Ran 1.01 mile (to do a brick) included in total mileage of 5.72 miles.

And I learned something new today about creating drag  (resistance) during practice sessions.  I’ve already been practicing drag when riding my bike at least half of the time on my mountain bike, anticipating during the race ride, I’ll go faster on a lighter bike.

But I also read about wearing several old swimsuits to create drag from air pockets.  Since I forgot to take my regular swimsuit out of the dryer and didn’t feel like putting it on wet, I tried one of my older (used to be tighter) suit and found it so stretched out, the plastic was falling out of the legs in little pieces…  So, I found another old suit and put it on over the first one.  Neon purple and neon teal green.  Oh, how I felt like a pro when I got in the pool today!  I know training secrets, too!

Day 41, Monday, June 27, 2011  Starting weight: 130.5  Ending activity:  Swam 30 lengths, Walked 6.08

Finally, a new low to wake up to.  Barely a new low, but it counts!  Woohoo!  Just waiting to get into those elusive 129’s.

Day 40, Sunday, June 26, 2011  Starting weight:  131.3; not so bad; I’m picking up right where I left off the day before my birthday!  Ending activity:  Wow, I’m tired…  Ran 3.7 miles (a new record), 3.2 of it without stopping; swam 28 lengths (24 in 20 minutes); biked 9+ miles; total walking mileage including run = 7.70.

This was a big day.  Three weeks from yesterday is the event, so while I don’t overdo my training, I must push myself as hard as I can so I’m not unprepared.

We drove out to the lake today to survey all the event routes.  If you look really close, way off in the distance, you can see a boat.  I’m pretty sure that is about where I have to swim out to and back for the first leg.

Allegedly… out and back is .3 miles!

Received disappointing news from the triathlon authorities that there will be no practice swims allowed as the fishermen get very upset if they are interrupted.  I mean, do you see many fishermen in this picture?  Had to ask, but will still try to swim in open water before the race.

Yesterday, I found a tri-suit for the event and bought it, although I’m not so sure red and orange are my colors… But, it fit, I think.  I’m not so experienced in this stuff yet.  🙂

Day 39, Saturday, June 25, 2011  Okay, so I did not weigh in the day after my birthday.  Can you blame me?  But, I did work out.  Ending activity:  Swam 24 lengths in 20 minutes and walked 3.46 miles.

Day 38, Friday, June 24, 2011  My birthday; the day I’m not reporting my weight.  Oh, I did weigh in…, but I’m not telling.  Let’s just say I forgot my boss bought me an early birthday lunch from Chipotle’s yesterday (I ate healthy, really.) and my husband surprised me with pizza last night, so… I jumped on the scale and jumped off again like I got burned!

And, it works out to be my day of rest in preparing for the triathlon.  So, it’s off to work I go with a pan of dark chocolate brownies.  Tomorrow might be the day I don’t actually weigh in!  Just kidding.  Maybe.

Or not.  I did eat more than usual today and since it’s my day of rest… I only walked 3.24 miles.  Let’s see; I started off well with a cup of java and almond milk, my daily smoothie made with 1/2 grapefruit, 1 orange, 1 tomato, whey protein powder, wheatgrass, and Cajun hot sauce.  About mid-morning I had to try one of my brownies made with coconut oil.  It was so good I had another.

My running partner surprised me by taking me out for lunch; I had a delish (and healthy) Thai salad of beef, onions, tomatoes, lettuce in a lime/cilantro marinade.  I ate a banana at work and then came home, had a beer with my husband, ate the rest of the brownie crust I left him (almost forgot about that); then we went to Moe’s and split a Mexican beef salad, chips and salsa.  Oh, and had another beer.  Not so horrible after all.

But I missed exercising today.  It was like going out without  armor, minor irritations burrowed under my skin.  Somehow working out relaxes my perspective.

So tomorrow is another day and I’m back into training.  Can’t wait!

Day 37, Thursday, June 23, 2011  Starting weight:  131.3… (Some mornings I contemplate throwing the scale across the room.)  Ending activity:  Oh my, I did it.  I swam 24 lengths in 20 minutes (my goal from the beginning), thanks partly to a pair of goggles that didn’t leak today, plus 2 extra lengths just for the heck of it!  Also walked 3.56 miles.

Sometimes when I work for ten hours, I don’t get all my mileage in.  But, I did feel like I got a true workout swimming.  I tried to go as fast as possible and be a machine; I was breathing heavy the whole time.  Since I started running not that long ago and adding extra exercises, my lungs and heart must wonder what kind of roller coaster ride they’re on!  I did experience a big wave from a neighboring lapster hit my mouth full throttle and had to (literally) choke through it.  Something to remember for the big day.

Also spent some time looking at tri-suits.  So far this is my favorite:

My legs aren’t quite this long.

Okay, time for bed.  Tomorrow is a big day (it’s my birthday) and the dark chocolate brownies I’m taking for work tomorrow just came out of the oven.  I might even start lifting weights.

Day 36, Wednesday, June 22, 2011  Starting weight:  131.9 (Now I’m getting a little annoyed with the scale; I did really good yesterday and sweat like a banshee!)  Ending Activity:  Started the day out with a bang; riding 4.31 miles to the health club, swimming 24 lengths in around 25 minutes (still having issues with the goggles), and riding 4.31 miles back for a total of  8.62 miles, gardened 4  hours.  So far.  Total walking mileage was 8+ miles.

Today was important in that I learned to swim without using noseplugs.  They kept falling off and there’s no way I can have that in the middle of a lake on race day.  So… I mustered on.  After changing as quick as I could into my riding clothes after swimming, I’m thinking yes, tri-suit.  It took me a good 10 minutes to get dried off and squeeze back into my clothes.

I ran into a neighbor at the grocery store and she said she’d seem me out “power walking”.  I said, no… that was me jogging.  Sigh.  I told you I was slow!

Also found a cool new tool to track mileage at MapMyRun.  It’s very precise.  Now I’m just yawning and waiting for the washing machine to finish so I can hang up my swimsuit to dry.

Day 35, Tuesday, June 21, 2011  Summer Solstice; the longest day of summer!  Starting weight:  130.9  Ending activity:  ran 3.51 miles without stopping; a personal high for total distance (note the 3.51…) and distance without stopping.  It took me an hour, so another area to try to improve my time.  I’ve been home 20 minutes and I haven’t stopped sweating; that might be a record, too.  I had to run at high noon, though, didn’t I?  Total distance walk and run:  7.35 miles.

This is the longest day of the year and I’m going to make it count!   

What I’ve learned by noon today:

  • It’s okay to run at the hottest time of the day; it’s good conditioning for all kinds of weather in the actual event.  Anything cooler will be a bonus.
  • Drink lots of water before and after running.  I was so nice and cool in the air conditioning before I left, I forgot to drink much; it might have helped my speed… (?)  And, it’s healthy.
  • Don’t sit hunched over your computer for hours before you run; it might contribute to back stiffness.  At least that’s where I think it came from.  Stretches would have helped, too.  (That might also have improved my speed…)
  • Maybe it’s not the running causing some discomfort to my knee, but the biking…

What I learned by 9:40 tonight:

  •  It doesn’t matter if it’s the longest day in the year if you can’t keep your eyes open.  Running in the sun takes a lot out of me.
  • I now know the times I have to work on improving for the triathlon:  1 hour run, 2 hour 40 minute bike ride, 30 minute swim.  Right now I’m at 4 hours and 10 minutes (04:10:00:0).  This is not counting transition times.  Of 176 entries last year, last place #176’s time was:  03:32:53.2.  I have some work to do.

Day 34, Monday, June 20, 2011  Starting weight:  131.8  Ending Activity:  Swam 24 lengths, biked 7 miles, walked 7.10 miles.  Pulled some weeds in the garden.  🙂

Clearly there is a repeating pattern.  I reach a new weight low; then bounce back up, just a bit.  Then, my weight goes back down.  Truly the two steps forward, one step back approach, although I think if I tighten my belt (literally), I can make only steps forward.  Of course, I can also not help myself to ten servings of cheese when it’s offered at a friend’s barbecue.  Last night I did really well resisting everything but the smoked Gouda…

7:50 AM:  My husband and I did not get up and go to the gym as planned.  It was simply too nice to stay in bed as thundering storms shook the house and pummeled the roof from 5 – 6.  Especially when all the pets were dug in, too.  Then, he made Café au lait and here I am.

A girl could get used to this.

Working on a new blog and planning my re-routed exercise workout.

9:38 PM:  Good thing I didn’t plan too much; my husband decided he couldn’t go in the  morning; I was going to do it and then storms threatened and then he said he’d go with  me later… then changed his mind.  So I reorganized my day and went by myself to swim, but got so frustrated with my brand new goggles leaking (it must be me…), I did my 24 lengths, showered and went home.

Then my guy asked if I wanted to go for a bike ride at 5:30, so I did.  I think the humidity is so high the air is dripping.   A second shower was in order and now I can hardly keep my eyes open.

But, I made it official today!  I signed up (and paid) for a spot in the triathlon.

Day 33, Sunday, June 19, 2011  Father’s Day  Starting weight:  130.7 (new low)  Ending activity:  Not sure yet; woke up with a stiff calf so am stepping back from an early morning bike ride.  Walked 6.97 miles

The walking was without intent, consisting of normal household stairs, errands, and walking the dog.  I decided to baby my ache as it was a bit more intense than usual and I do not want to be sidelined through anything, but especially something I can control like over-training.

Day 32, Saturday, June 18, 2011  Starting weight:  132.0 (You play, you pay… but it was worth it!)  Ending activity:  Bike 8-9 miles, Run 1.4 miles of 7.18 total mileage, Swim 24 lengths.

Again, don’t know what got into me!  After a long half-day at work, my running partner and I did a “brick”; we biked 8-9 miles (yes, it’s time to find my bike odometer), then ran a short circuit of .4 miles.  To my surprise, when I returned home, I talked my husband into a late afternoon swim, so we went to the health club and still in my workout clothes, I got on the track where 9 laps make a mile.  I ran 1 lap in my tennis shoes, noted the shooting pains in my kneecaps and took off my shoes and socks and ran barefoot for the other 8 laps.  I was shocked to find I wasn’t having problems running, so stretched out my stride a bit and tried to go faster.  Shocking, I tell you, shocking!

And, I was thrilled to confirm my pedometer is exactly on point.  Yaay!

Then, still not finished, we swam.  I worked on my freestyle and breaststroke and shaved my time from 40 minutes to 30.

We finished when the place closed around 8 pm and I got to shower and get dressed amidst about 20 adolescent girls on a birthday outing.  I enjoyed listening to them chortle and giggle and squeal and then caught the eye of one of the mothers trying to round them all up.  I think she had quite a night in store.

Day 31, Friday, June 17, 2011  Starting weight:  131.1; Ending activity:  Dr. Oz 20 minute workout, walked 3+ miles.

Woohoo, finally, some movement!  Another milestone; my lowest weight since starting to run.  Must remind myself not to over-indulge as a reward.  There is a party tonight.  I’m taking my watermelon salad so I have something to eat!  Plus, it’s really good.  (See Day 18.)

While training for the triathlon (which will be on a Saturday), I’m making Friday my day of rest.  If I can pry my fingers from these keys in the next 15 minutes, I intend to do my Dr. Oz 20 minute workout tape though, mainly as a stretching/limbering prelude to a 10 hour work day.

On a side note, my sweet husband, who now remembers teaching swimming to younger kids (and was a lifeguard…), is giving me some tips on my swimming form.  I made it to the “tadpole” level in kindergarten, but that was the extent of my formal lessons.   It all sounds great in theory; we’ll see how it goes in the pool tomorrow.

Yep, went to that party; ate my watermelon salad, the host’s “Surprisingly Good Salad” made with celery, blue cheese, and walnuts which is surprisingly good especially if you don’t care for celery, some kind of garlic potatoes, grilled pork (?–not actually sure), a piece of bruschetta, a very small piece of wheat bread with a yogurt/curry/lime dip, lots of carrots and cherry tomatoes and pea pods with another dip, a teeny slice of Texas cake, two small pieces of pizza, and had four (small) sangrias with orange slices and yes I ate the orange slices!  I can’t remember anything else but when I came home, saw my husband’s leftover pizza and ate a piece of that!  Hey, I was proud I didn’t have a second piece of Texas cake, but I should probably start keeping a food diary again.

I only had one.

But… I did have 4 of these.

Day 30, Thursday, June 16, 2011  Starting weight:  133.0 Ending activity:  Swam 22 or 24 lengths and kickboarded 2 lengths, ran 3.5 miles (1.5, then 2.0) of a total of 8.4 miles walked.  The running was a personal best; next time I’m going to try it in one effort.

Today is the one month recap day for my new running program and… the added triathlon training.  It is fitting that today I donned a swimming cap, goggles (boy are they cooler than the ones I had 10 years ago), and yes, dorky is as dorky does, noseplugs.  And I actually put my face in the water and swam.  I could SEE under the water; it was amazing!

And, what a workout.  Mainly I swam because when I switched to kickboarding, it was so slooooow.  I mean, I’ve been swimming (loosely defined) all along, but I never put my face in the water, so it was about the same speed as kickboarding.  And I’m no speed demon now; I forgot to look at the clock to see how long it took me, but… it seemed like I was going faster.  I had to have been.  My husband also gave me a couple of pointers on how not to churn my arms uselessly like windmills, so as unnatural as it seemed, I tried his suggestions.

So, when I started on May 18 (and yes it has been 30 days… I just re-counted; there were 31 days in May, so…), I was at 136.5, so…   I’m glad to say I’ve lost 3.5 pounds and probably gained some muscle.  Somewhere.

About the running; it was hot, it was sweaty, and I never thought about giving up.  Thank you, my running partner who’s keeping me going.

And, it’s official.  My shoes stink.

Day 29, Wednesday, June 15, 2011  Starting weight:  133.1  (I have to be building muscles; I just have to.)  Ending activities:  Swam/kickboarded 24 lengths (.3 miles), Walked 7.09 miles

Would you like to know what it’s really like to bike over 27 miles in one go-round?  The first 12-13 were ok; ran into a couple of hills and had to “pump it up.”  It took me 1 hour (and part of that was on the trail where I had to stop for cross traffic; the rest of it was in open country).

Got to the lake (the 1/2 point) and felt so triumphant; called my husband; oh, how I love shocking him.  He didn’t really think I could go that far.  But then… I turned around and ran into a wall of wind.  (Later, he told me the wind was 18 mph gusts; it was pretty steady where I was at.)  But as a matter of pride, there was no calling home for a ride; I was determined to ride back, all 13 miles.  As I battled to stay pedaling (and I was in a very low gear), I realized even with the up and down hills on the final stretch to the lake, it had all been a slow, gradual, downward slope, which meant it was all a slow, gradual, upward slope on the way back.

I found myself chanting in rhythm to the rotations; you can do it, you can do it, YOU CAN DO IT.  Then, thank you Tony Robbins, I have what it takes within me now over and over and over.  Then… I broke into song.  Any song I could think of; knew the little country church spire should be coming into view at any mile and this brought on songs from Jesus Christ Superstar: Hosanna, Hey-sanna, sanna-sanna, ho, sanna hey, sanna, hoeooo-sannnna.  Pretty soon, I switched over to screaming across the small little corn plants blowing in the fields; GO-GO-GO-GO-GO!  Anything not to think about pedaling.  My legs were screaming, too.  It took me 1 hour, 40 minutes on the return.  I blame the wind.

Then, I did my first “brick” by running .5 miles when I got off the bike.  Kept on my tennis shoes instead of my VFF’s (won’t do that again).  If you want to know about the brick training, I explained it yesterday:  What?  You’ve Never Heard of Brick Training?  Join the Club.

I slept like a log and woke up with very sore legs.  But, I made it to the pool and traveled 24 lengths in the pool.  I say “traveled” because it was a combo of swimming, kick-boarding, and a couple of water walks.  This is my weakest link, so I will work on it.  Time to buy a pair of goggles as I think I have no choice but to put my face in the water!

Hey, where’s his goggles?

Day 28, Tuesday, June 14, 2011  Starting weight:  132.2  Okay, I think if my mother was here, she would tell me I’m building muscle.  🙂  Ending activity:  I did it; I rode 27+ miles on my bike and then “transitioned” into a run of .5 miles.  That would technically be a “brick”.  I was going to try for a double brick by adding on a few laps of swimming, but once I got home, sat down, drank a glass of water and ate a hard-boiled egg, hummus, red peppers and carrots, I felt a little tired.  Plus my husband promised to go with me very early tomorrow morning to swim.  Walked close to 5 miles total, but somewhere forgot where I wrote it down…

Yesterday, I got a new bike.  And wrecked it when I was trying to figure out the new gear-shifting system.  It’s actually very slick, I just couldn’t remember which was slow and which was fast.  Sigh.  It was a mini-wreck; I ran into a pylon then couldn’t keep myself upright, so we (me and my new bike) went down; there was no damage and I’m uninjured.

For the rest of today’s entry, I thought it deserved a longer examination now that my research is unearthing words/phrases/theories I never heard of before…  So, here’s my new post:  What?  You’ve Never Heard of Brick Training?  Join the Club.

Day 27, Monday, June 13, 2011  Starting weight:  133.8  Ending Activity:  Swam/kickboarded 30 lengths = over 1/3 mile (I think 24 is 1/3).  Walked:  Over 6 miles and biked around 1.0 from test-riding bikes (yes, I got an early birthday present!).

Wow, I didn’t get up at 5 and swim, but I did make it by 7:20.  I have my work cut out for me.

Having done more research on training for Sprint Triathlons (and the one I’m doing, by the way is non-traditional as the biking is the Olympic–longer–distance), I am going to make a schedule for my workouts.  The one little step I took 26 days ago has brought me somewhere I didn’t expect to go, but… I’m going!

Day 26, Sunday, June 12, 2011  Starting weight:  134.4  Ending Activity:  Ran 3.2 miles (in 3 segments); part of 8.56 miles total.

7 AM:  I’m not upset at all with this temporary gain because I ate a taco salad with part of the shell, a Thai entrée (Mango Curry Chicken) with rice, plus two beers, a bunch of Hershey’s chocolate nugget things one of my roommates offered and I could not resist, a huge breakfast buffet yesterday with scrambled cheesy eggs, a biscuit with gravy, bacon and sausage (let’s not forget the delightful fresh fruit plate), coffee with cream, and to top it all off a DQ cheeseburger, fries, and Heath Blizzard made with chocolate ice cream on the drive home.

However, it does sound rather decadent when I list it all out like that.  I don’t think I’m forgetting much else, though…

Had a great time at the B&B and walked a LOT, but am glad to be back and getting into my workout routine, which will be stepped up as I am now in the five week countdown to the triathlon.  Yikes!

End-of-day recap:  I didn’t start the day out thinking I would beat all previous running records, but once I got started, I felt good and I knew I was well-rested (and well-fed), so… I ran with my dog over to my running partner’s house which is almost exactly 1 mile.  From there I ran another mile and even though I ran into a friend on the trail, I kept running while she turned her bike around and walked it with me and gave me encouragement.  Then, I walked a few minutes and finished with 1.2 miles, completing a circuit my husband had laid out.

Five weeks to go and I’m starting to research how to train for a triathlon.  Duh.  I think I mentioned my plan of doing just a bit more than required and polishing those abilities.  On my first foray into advice, I found this site:  100 Tips for Triathletes and…  one of the tips was to train just enough.  Sigh of relief.  The next running step, I think, is to run two 1.5 mile segments in the same session in a couple of days; then run the whole shebang the next time.

Tomorrow I start swimming at 5 AM, with husband in tow.  We’re rejoining a health club we’d previously used for years.

But, it’s going to be hard for me to fall asleep; we watched my TV show tonight, Game of Thrones, and it kept me on the edge of my seat the whole hour, only to conclude with a very disturbing ending.   Pooh.

Day 25, Saturday, June 11, 2011  No weigh-in.  Ending Activity:  Over 6 miles walked (and recorded 8+ miles for Friday, the 10th)

Day 24, Friday, June 10, 2011  Starting Weight: Forgot to weigh in with all the excitement of leaving for the Bead&Button Show in Milwaukee; looking forward to some girlfriend and shopping time!  So, will probably not be checking back in until Sunday or Monday, although I will be tracking my mileage (oh, thank you, handy pedometer) and will be strong about food choices; after all, I am in training!  🙂  And, I’m boldly taking my swimsuit to finally tryout the hotel pool (after all these years)!

Day 23, Thursday, June 9, 2011  Starting Weight:  132.1  Finally, the scales are moving a little.  Ending activity:  6.86 total mileage; of that ran over 1 mile in three parts.

5:45 AM:  One last day of work this week and I’m off to an annual treat for me; two days with some girlfriends and a football field of jewelry:  The Bead & Button Show.  There’s also a football field of food, so I’m looking forward to saying no (to most things) with the phrase, “I’m in training” for a triathlon!  I wrote a new post about what’s going on in that sphere and hope you’ll read it:  Stand Back (Get Out of My Way) or… Who Says There’s Limits?

I noticed a funny thing last night when I went for a walk with my husband and our dog.  I broke into a slight jog.  That’s right, me!  I fear my friend PM might be right; could I becoming addicted to running?  I don’t really think so; I stopped right away.  But, I was wearing tennis shoes and without my VFF’s, honestly, the way my feet hit the ground felt really funny.  Interesting that I’m even noticing this stuff.

Day 22, Wednesday, June 8, 2011  Starting Weight:  132.3  (Woohoo–new low for this weight loss excursion)  Ending Activity:  Walked 4.4, Biked about 1.5 hours–got off our mapped route, so not sure about the distance, although I did discover if I leave my pedometer on while I biked, it counts my movements as steps, so yes, I detracted those steps!

As hot and humid as it’s been; almost a full week in the nineties, the heat doesn’t seem to bother me as much as in years past.  Maybe because I’m sweating so much, the moisture in the air has become as one.  Or maybe I’ve just accepted being hot and sweaty.  My husband thinks it’s sexy…

I used to not like taking two showers a day; Oh, no, honey, I can’t exercise this late in the day; I’ve already showered.  But all that went out the window when I have to wait to exercise (train) after work.

Day 21, Tuesday, June 7, 2011  Starting Weight:  132.7…  (and I was really good yesterday….)  Ending Activity:  We’ll see, the pedometer is back in action!  Yowza!  12 hours later; this is what I’ve done:  Ran 1.5 miles without stopping, walked a bit, then ran another 1.0 mile for a total of 2.5 miles.  Wow; two new records; total distance and distance ran without stopping!  Total mileage today on foot = 7.53 miles.

6 AM:  So many thoughts race through my mind especially when I must be at work in less than an hour. (This is a week of 10 hour days, so… I’m not doing much else besides working and exercising.)  First and foremost; I need a place to swim.

So, for future discussion… on Day 19, I made a decision to participate in a Triathlon; yes, big news.  On Day 20, I realized my Trek mountain bike of almost 25 years might need to be upgraded; did I mention I have a birthday coming up?  Also, want to discuss addiction (me?) and endorphins.

Just read a post from a friend who is discouraged about her exercise program, so this is for her:  I don’t know exactly what got into me; there was no big momentous decision, but when it happened, something clicked and I thought enough is enough.  I just took that first step and moved.  It doesn’t have to be a big change all at once.  Just one step.

Day 20, Monday, June 6, 2011  Starting weight:  132.5  Ending Activity:  I pulled out my Dr. Oz workout tape and did it at 5 AM; then worked; then rode at least 7 miles with my RP (running partner) also interchangeable with JS.  Oh, and I got a new battery for my pedometer, but have no idea how long my stride is…. arrg.

Day 19, Sunday, June 5, 2011  Starting weight:  132.8  Ending Activity:  Remains to be seen; woke up to find my pedometer is dead; what’s up with that?  OK; I think I ran over two miles in over one mile segments because I ran to my running partner’s house without stopping (need to do a MapQuest, I guess) and then we ran back to my house without stopping.  A friend at my facebook page, A Running Journal, suggested I look into the Garmin 110 watch.  It does look slick.  I do have a birthday coming up later this month?

Then my running partner disappeared in her house for a moment and reappeared wearing Kanga Boots.  If we don’t make a pair, I don’t know who does!  Yes, these are them (that does not sound like good English); I will try to find a better picture soon, but I’m off to work in a few minutes.

Finally, some downward movement in my weight.  Wishing I hadn’t gotten up in the middle of the night and eaten a piece of flatbread (100 cal.), but I was so hungry I couldn’t sleep.  The watermelon is delicious, but… the full feeling fades fast!

Oh, well.  I’m just happy and encouraged to see some results.  When I entered my weight at MyFitnessPal, my jubilation was short-lived when I noticed I was down to 131 way back at the end of January.  Sigh… But I will get back there soon enough!

Another thing that is eye-opening is tracking my days; today is Day 19, which is almost three weeks.  I started at 136.5, so overall this is a good drop, but very slow and I can easily see my food indulgences.  Time to tighten the belt, literally!  Also, am feeling the desire (surprisingly) to lift weights and find a place to swim.

Day 18, Saturday, June 4, 2011  Starting weight:  134.5  Ending Activity:  Ran 2.3 miles (in .5 increments), a new high for me; included in total miles walked = 9 miles

A very hot day, again an early morning at work at 7:30 ’til 1:30-ish, then helped with a garden tour (as a Master Gardener intern), in the 93 degree temperatures; decided I need a new garden hat…; after I got home around 5, realized storms were on the horizon, I called my running partner and still cannot believe it, but we ran in 90 degrees!  I can’t imagine what’s gotten into me; this is so unlike me to embrace sweating.  Still loving my shoes and hoping the weight loss will kick in soon.

We celebrated our run with an unbelievable refreshing salad and so simple to make (especially if your husband–who’s still very impressed you’re running–makes it…):

I don’t think you can eat too much!

Here’s the recipe:  Watermelon chunks, feta cheese, basil strips, apple cider vinegar.  Variations include:  salt & pepper to taste, lime juice, olive oil.

Day 17, Friday, June 3, 2011  Starting weight:  134.7  Ending Activity:  6.0 miles walking, 45 minutes bike riding (not sure of mileage)

Oh my gosh, I was actually on my bike and riding at 5:30 AM with my running partner.  We had an hour before I needed to get ready for work and it was great!  Very humid and sweating = hopeful weight loss!  We stopped and talked for about 15 minutes, and that was great, too.  Worked 10 hours and managed to put in a little over 5 miles there (I try to get out of my chair as much as possible), and took a late walk with the hubby and dog before bed.

Day 16 ~ Thursday, June 2, 2011  Starting weight:  135.3  Ending Activity:  7.6 miles walked

A bit of a drop, but we’re covering old territory, aren’t we?  Today is a clean slate and I’m going to very carefully choose what I eat!

Lots of gardening; not as much food…

Day 15 ~ Wednesday, June 1, 2011  Starting weight: 136.4  Ending activity:  Ran 1.1 mile, included in total miles walked 12.81, and biked 6.0 miles.

But I am not philosophical about gaining almost 2 pounds (bid difference from .2 lbs)…  There’s a reason:  I take full responsibility for eating all those chips a few days ago; I know it takes a while to show up and think about all the water retention.  Yikes!

It’s back to the food diary for me.  I have to write it down and keep it close at hand (and if I have time transfer to the online system because it is really cool) and look at everything I eat and think about the impact. 

I cannot buy into the “look how much I’ve exercised, therefore I can eat anything I want” belief system.  Maybe when I reach my goal weight I can ease up but not now; at least in the big picture.

As soon as I saw my weight, my feet started “itching” to run.  I looked at the clock, calculated the time it would take against my 9 o’clock appointment, and decided to go for it.  The dog looked at me so pathetically, I decided to let her come as well.  A rather dangerous proposition if things didn’t go well, but… I knew she’d been running with my husband, and as it turned out… she heeled better when I was running than when we’re walking!  So, I did it and beat my old 1.0 record by .1…  Every bit counts!

And, it made me a bit more conscious the rest of the day.

Day 14 ~ Tuesday, May 31, 2011  Starting weight:  134.8  Ending activity: 10.38 miles walked

6:12 am:  I’m philosophical about gaining .2 lbs… I have to pay for all those potato chips sometime and… just read an article that goes hand-in-hand with making eating mistakes that squash results when you start to run/workout.  Here’s the link.

Day 13 ~ Monday, May 30, 2011:  Memorial Day Starting weight:  Unavailable due to being out of town; Ending activity:  Ran a whole mile without stopping!  6.86 total distance for walk and run.

At 4:45 pm, it’s still 89 degrees and my running partner is going to call me when she gets out of her sweetly air-conditioned movie theater!  In the meantime, as I was waiting for our run with a bit of time on my hands, (just got back from my lovely niece’s high school graduation where the dangerous bits of chocolate cake, Blimpies subs, and chips–oh, those chips–did find their way to my mouth) I decided to check my social media outlets, namely e-mail and Facebook.

I thought I would catch up with all my friends and spend my time writing sassy comments about how I was struggling, how I was feeling, and how I intended to overcome, when I came across one (and then more and more threads of that) status in particular that stopped me cold.  A dear friend’s husband went in for a routine colonoscopy last week and was told he has colon cancer. 

First, my heart skipped a bit and now I find myself in a state of shock.  Then a little whisper starts in my mind…  I should be more grateful for what I have, what I am capable of, and enjoy these moments to their fullest.  My husband is due home any minute and I am going to greet him with a BIG hug. 

Then I had no other choice; I went out and ran 1 mile without stopping, a new first for me.

Day 12 ~ Sunday, May 29, 2011  Starting weight:  134.6  Ending activity:  Ran 2 miles in .5 sections (walking a block in between); total miles combined with walking:  11.52

At 6:29 AM after all the gardening yesterday, I woke a little sore.  Am debating an early morning run as… I’m off to a niece’s graduation in a few hours and am feeling the need (and surprisingly the want) for running! 

Despite finishing the chips yesterday (Was there any doubt when they were sitting on the counter, calling my name?) in handfuls grabbed when I came in and out the door for drinks of water, also noticing my husband was going in and out the door for excessive drinks of water, too and the pile of chips was decreasing rapidly, although he left the last few for me… I still lost 6/10 of a pound.  Maybe because I didn’t eat much else? 

But, I’ll have to be on my guard today at the graduation festivities; party smorgasbords are always an Achilles Heel for me; I feel good, I like to sample things and sometimes my hand becomes an automatic feeder.

I’ve just convinced myself I need to run this morning!

Day 11 ~ Saturday, May 28, 2011  Starting weight:  135.2  Ending activity: walked 8+ miles.  Also transplanted gardened 3+ hours; digging holes, transplanting, and planting.  (Observed husband’s annual ritual of pulling up the poison ivy; an event almost worth selling tickets for as he decked himself out in “HAZMAT” gear due to an unfortunate encounter several years ago.)

How my day went:  At 6 AM, after weighing in, all I can say is…  enough fun and games; if I’m going to run and sweat, I want to see some real results.  135.2 is old territory; I was less than this a week ago.  There’s about half a tin left of the potato chips; starting volume was 1.5 lbs. and I can safely say I ate over half of what’s gone, so… I’ve had my share and I’m moving on.  I’ve also revisited MyFitnessPal for the first time since 02-11-11 when I weighed 131.  Arg–obviously I’ve been having a “good ole time”. 

I’m also reminded I have a fascination with footwear (No, I don’t own hundreds of pairs of shoes–I’m a jacket/coat girl).  This is my profile pic at MyFitnessPal and is what I’ve promised myself when I reach 120 lbs.  Cute, huh?

They are cute!

I’m re-motivated and back in the saddle.  There’ll be no fighting over the rest of those chips. 

Ready to grab the pedometer and start my day!  (I even clip it on my bathrobe so I don’t miss a step.)  🙂

Day 10 ~ Friday, May 27, 2011  Starting weight:  135.8  Ending activity:  7.09 miles, including 1.8 miles running!  Level of soreness:  None.  (Even my poor feet, which have ached since I started walking ten miles a day during the last two weeks of April on the beach, felt normal.)

I knew as soon as I weighed in this morning why my weight shot up.  It was that piece of Cheesecake Factory cheesecake covered in a strawberry purée (Which begs the question why did I think the chips, dips and creamy potato salad didn’t contribute?…).

 I didn’t split my piece the way the thin elegant ladies at the garden party did.  Why?  Because I’m a runner and I felt like it didn’t matter what I ate.  I was running it off, right?  Of course that was yesterday,  and… I didn’t quite make it to the running part.  I stayed at the party too late to run as I’d planned.  Hmmm.  Maybe I should have run before I ate.

Yet, the scales going up for some strange reason didn’t alarm me or dishearten me the way it often does.  I knew why and I took full responsibility.  It also helped that when I put on my work trousers they were only snug; not painful.  (I’m always in a foul mood if my clothes are so tight they hurt.)

After putting in a ten-hour work day today, and not connecting with my running partner, Aimey, when I got home, I had a decision to make tonight.  I could blow off running and do something else (not TV…); garden, eat, go on-line and whine about why I didn’t run two days in a row or… I could go running by myself.  My husband had already run with the dog, so he wasn’t interested in accompanying me (which would have been a walk for him).

And, the weather channel showed a wide band of showers heading our way within the hour.  It would have been so easy NOT to run because it was also unseasonably cold; I mean, I had two cats begging to curl up with me.

But, it would have been so hard not to run when I’ve made a committment to my body, my running partner, and my husband; I’m frankly tired of making excuses for why I don’t do something.

So, I found my sweats, added an extra shirt, and put on my pretty pink five-toed running shoes.  I’m sort of getting used to the shocking neon. 

Now the running part.  No one except maybe everybody in a 3/4 mile stretch of the neighborhood was watching me as I started out determined to repeat my 1/2 mile miracle.  I ran a half mile, walked a bit, turned around and ran another 1/2 mile.  Walked a bit more, turned around and ran another 1/2 mile.  (This is big stuff for me.)  I’d equalled my longest distance so far.   I also tried to overtake a walking couple, but with eight car lengths to go, they turned down a different block.  Sigh…

So, it was a big moment when I realized I’d run three 1/2 mile segments and… I felt pretty good.  So, I decided it was time to up the ante and break my record–just a little.  I ran .2 miles more before a bicycling Aimey  found me.  I bragged and she was happy for me.  We made plans for tomorrow and I ran another tenth before reaching home. 

Woohoo for me!  I did it and I felt good.  So good, I had a beer and several helpings of a thank you gift from our neighbors for watching their house and cats for a week; a huge tin of very good, very greasy potato chips from a UTZ Potato Chip Factory

And no, I don’t feel bad.  But, it might be time to start keeping a daily food journal again.  I found a great (free) one at http://www.myfitnesspal.com/.

I’m actually looking forward to seeing what I can do tomorrow.

Day 9 ~ Thursday, May 26, 2011   Starting weight:  134.7  Ending activity: Walked 6.44 miles

Another dip!  But, wait… it’s raining cats and dogs outside; when/how will I get in my run?  Noticed for the first time some definite soreness in my thighs.  Can it be?  Things are starting to tighten; oh, I should take measurements today.

Day 8 ~ Wednesday, May 25, 2011  Starting weight:  135.7  Ending activity:  Walked 8.63; biked 6 miles

Finally, a bit of a dip.  The bike ride was a pleasant change of pace.   No beer tonight. 

Caught my husband watching TV tonight when I came home from Bead Therapy.  American Idol finale.  We did kind of stop before the big night, but he knew that when we went cold turkey.  His excuse?  The tornado sirens went off and he had to turn on the TV in the basement.  I let it slide—this time.

And, my beading friend, DF, is back-peddling on the running.

I looked in the mirror tonight and was surprised to see a not-so-tired face looking back.  There’s hope.

Day 7 ~ Tuesday, May 24, 2011   Starting weight:  136.8  Ending activity:  Ran 1.5 miles, part of 13.7 walked

 So, I did weigh in and thought for sure I’d have dropped even after another ½ pizza and 2 beers on Monday but… no.  Sigh.

Had tea with my friend from Bead Therapy and she’s pondering run/walking with me.  I knew she’d come around.

On the plus side, I ran 1.5 miles which contributed to the total of 13.07 miles walked.  My running partner, JS, is 21 years younger than me… she seemed to glide over the trail, while even in my VFF’s each step was a heavy plop.  Then I heard a new noise; it was my arms flapping against my… armpits… I know this paints a very bad picture of me, but now I realize I need to do arm exercises…

JS is a task master; I thought we were only going to do .5 or maybe a bit over…

The conversation went something like this:

Me:  (out of breath) Okay, that was ½ mile.  Want to walk back?

Her:  Sure.  Want to do it again when we get back?

Me:  Huh?  You mean run?  Again?

Her:  You can do it.

Me:  Okay, I’ll try.

Then, repeat… Arrgh!

At one point, I wondered if my husband had offered to pay her.  Sent an emergency e-mail to my beading friend; I need someone in the same boat as me…

On the plus side, my husband said I looked “healthier” and seemed happier.  He’s amazed with the amount of activity I’m “suddenly” doing.  Even though we used to play racquetball and tennis and played on a softball league together, it has been a long time since regular athletic outings.  Too easy to let the patterns slip away.

 Day 6 ~ Monday, May 23, 2011   Starting weight:  no weigh in  Ending activity:  ran .75; walked 18+ miles (yes, this is a new world, land distance record for me)

Did not weight in; afraid to after pizza and 2 beers last night…  walked over 18 miles today (ran .75 in two spurts); over 8 miles by 10 AM; the rest due to gardening.  My feet ache.

Day 5 ~ Sunday, May 22, 2011   Starting weight:   134.9   Ending activity:  Ack ~ my anal self is screaming; why didn’t I write today’s mileage down…

 Wow, I’m down.  Despite the fact I wasn’t really trying to diet yesterday.  Now I wish I hadn’t had that 1 and ½ beers!  Went to bed at 9:30 and slept until now, 6: 15.  Woke up with a throbbing knee off and on from 2 am on.  Finally wondered if it’s related to twisting my foot—same side.  Am going to try to run today.

Did NOT run.  Did a lot of yard work and walked.

Day 4 ~Saturday, May 21, 2011  Starting weight:  135.0  Ending activity:  walked 8+ miles

Woohoo.  I am losing! 

Worked ½ day; then walked with my husband, then pruned trees with him and carried bricks around all afternoon.  Walked 8+ miles and twisted my foot on the last dog-walk of the night.  Didn’t run; forgot about it in the rush of getting ready for work (start time 7:30 am); after got involved in yard work to the point of being almost exhausted.

Day 3 ~ Friday, May 20, 2011  Starting weight:  136.2   Ending activity:  walked 7.4 miles

Last night as I was scarfing down popcorn and beer (because I did run you know on Wednesday), my husband reminded me (tongue-in-cheek, I hope) the world is supposed to end on Sunday.  Not sure what he meant.

Today is a work day for me; I’m due in at 7:30.  This is my golden hour of time to myself, but my feet ache too bad to even consider running/walking right now.  I did go to bed at 10:11 (getting early for me).

We also made a vow to stop the TV on the day I started running, but failed last night.  We collapsed around 6:30 and didn’t get out of our chairs until 10…  What can I say; I had a cat on my lap.  No, seriously… we have to just do it.  We each picked one TV show  we can watch and are negotiating for the rest; i.e., he wants to watch ½ hour of evening news; I want to be able to watch a movie now and then.  I mean, I am a screenwriter for crying out loud.

We’ll see how many steps I get in at work today! 

PS:  I’m 55.

Friday night: It was a bruising day at work because something got under my skin.  I look forward to running away my issues.  I walked 7+ miles and did pretty good on the diet.  We’ll see what the scales say in the am.

Had a chance to visit a couple of running websites KS sent me and took heart from Jess Galloway’s website on beginning runners where he talks about resistance from some friends to accept the new me(see Day 1 below)

Day 2 ~ Thursday, May 19, 2011   Starting weight:  No weigh-in  Ending activity:  Walked 12+ miles

I really wanted to run today; I really did.  Instead, I walked 12+ miles, worked 2.0+ volunteer hours as a master gardener trainee setting out annuals, and dug up/carried 400 bricks from a neighbor’s patio with my husband.   A Maddox is a wonderful tool.  I couldn’t even push the wheelbarrow more than ½ way down the alley.  (Thank goodness my husband said he’d do the rest by himself when I’m at work–I think I slow him down.)

Finally stopped the telephone tag with one of my dear running friends (who tried to nudge me into running  five years ago, bless her heart).  To my surprise Mandi did not fully support the type of shoes I bought (believes her husband had a major injury because of running barefoot), but did enlighten me with several resources…  Jess Galloway, Couchto5K, and more (which I’ll share as I explore).  And yes, I’m entertaining some sort of formal goal, but not quite sure what it will be.

Also ate leftover pizza, popcorn (serving size that of a large salad bowl), had 2 beers and didn’t weigh in. 

Another dilemma; setting up the schedule.  My friend JS, who at 34, wants to run, used to run, but has to be very careful because of her newly diagnosed IBS.  It’s better for her to run in the pm.  Another friend JO, who is almost 62, who wants to walk, or maybe run very early in the am—maybe.  I prefer running in the AM and being done.  That being said, I am more relaxed in the pm, but it will be getting hotter.

Day 1 ~ Wednesday,  May 18, 2011   Starting weight:  136.5  Ending activity:  Ran .5 miles (walked 10+)

I just did it; my husband and I had a big debate over the pros and cons of VFF shoes…  So, I polled my FB friends sparking the biggest set of comments I think I’ve ever had.  In the end, I decided to take the chance running in VFF “barefoot” shoes might not be the best thing for me, but they’re the only things that didn’t make me feel like my feet were being dragged down in quicksand. 

So, with my husband and my dog as witness, we went out at 5 p.m. and ran up the street.  I’m pretty slow and at one point, my husband questioned my speed, so I stopped and walked, giving him a pretty good look at how slow I walk.  He didn’t say another word, but the dog knew.  She was amazed.  And, my husband was very proud of me.  He said he’d never seen me run so far at one time since he’d known me (i.e., in his life).

Not everyone was so supportive.  It’s called breaking the mold.  Later that evening, in the company of a set of women (the majority of whom are in a similar boat as me–in or close to menopause, battling slower metabolism, fatigue, and perhaps lack of motivation) who meet every week for “bead therapy,” I unveiled my new running plan. 

One of my best friends (the one who asked me to join WW with her… go figure) rather sharply asked why I couldn’t be happy with myself the way I was?  I was stunned by her comment and told her it was because I didn’t like the way I looked in the mirror and I didn’t want to keep buying bigger and bigger clothes every year.  And honestly, I’m not at all fond of the little jelly roll/muffin top that seemed to appear out of nowhere.

I know I’ll never look like I’m 20 or 30 again, and I’m truly not aspiring to get back into that string bikini, but… I want to look the best I can and feel good.  I also want to keep my balance, strength, and independence when I get older.  But, I didn’t tell her all that—yet.

Health tips predating my running journal (I still like them!)

Tip #1:  What you eat in private shows up in public.

Tip #2:  Walk the length of a football field to walk off 1 (that’s one) M&M.

Tip #3:  Observation at a Weight Watchers meeting by a husband accompanying his wife:

“If you spent as much time and energy following the system instead of trying to figure out how the beat the system, wouldn’t you be further ahead?”

Tip #4:  A simple recipe for really good black bean brownies:

*Puree one can of black beans (do not rinse off)  *Add a package of brownie mix  *Bake per package instructions  *Enjoy!

If baked in mini-muffin cups, yield should be around 34 brownies.  Each brownie is approximately 46 calories (based on a brownie mix of 120 calories per serving of dry mix only) and equals 1 point for Weight Watchers.  The black beans take the place of any eggs and/or oil.

5 Responses to A Running Journal

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