Happy Anniversary!

Wow, has it really been a year?  Technically my anniversary was yesterday, but I had a busy night and didn’t have time when I got home to write about this.  If you’re still not sure what I’m talking about, a year ago yesterday I wrote my first blog post.  So much has happened in the last year, but at the same time it went by too quickly.

The first six months I was on a roll!  Going to the gym three times a week, running twice a week, eating a balanced diet.  Then the inevitable happened, I went on vacation!  I wasn’t able to go to the gym for a few weeks and I wasn’t able to consistently go running.  But probably worst of all, I started treating myself.  I had worked so hard the last few months, I deserve to splurge a little bit!  Although that technically is true, it’s dangerous to start doing that without a plan.  One thing I, as well as most Americans, struggle with is moderation!  You can lose weight and eat ice cream.  You just can’t eat a pint of ice cream in one night.  Or eat an ice cream sandwich every other night for weeks on end and expect to maintain the same results you were making.

Before I realized how long it had been, I was going on three months of irregular exercise and junk food eating.  My reasoning: I’m still on “vacation”, I’ll go back to my routine next week.  Then it became a consistent next week promise for another month.  Around this time I started to truly realize I was in denial and couldn’t admit to what had happened.  I had not just fallen off the wagon but I was rolling down the hill towards the creek, where I started in the first place.  I held on to this hope that I could just pick up where I left off, now four months prior.  But if you talk to anyone who exercises on a regular basis, even just one week of not exercising will allow your body to lose it’s strength and endurance.  You won’t lose it completely in a week, you just might feel more sore than usual.  But after five months of this promising to start next week, who was I kidding?

So where am I today?  I could easily say I’m back at square one.  I’m back to where I was a year ago and act as if this last year didn’t even happen.  But fortunately for me it did happen.  I know now that I can do this.  It may start slow and fluctuate along the way but it is possible to consistently lose weight months on end.  In all reality I’m not at square one.  I do weigh less than I did a year ago, but more importantly I have a year’s worth of knowledge to build off of.  And there’s no taking that back!

Before I get into my current plan, I apologize for taking so long, but let me tell you about the Thanksgiving Turkey Trot 10K.  My goal for that 10K was to finish and finish within the two hour time limit.  I went for a few trial runs in the weeks leading up to the 10K, but I knew that I was no where close to what I had imagined nine months ago when I first signed up.  I wanted to finish without killing myself along the way.  The day arrived and it was time to face the music.  I am so entirely grateful that my sister was there with me every step of the way.  We started with a steady walking pace.  One thing I’ve learned is don’t go full throttle right away.  You have to warm up and build up to that pace you want.  The first two miles we walked, and I was feeling good, so we started jogging some intervals.  We used landmarks and feeling to determine each interval.  Although that’s a good visual incentive, I think I do better with timed intervals, at least at this point.  The next two miles I really used up my gas.  By mile four I didn’t have anything left.  I just wanted to finish!  We walked on and my fear of not finishing in time was growing.  Then we reached mile marker six and I knew it was almost over.  When we reached the end I saw the clock read 1:50 something, all I cared was it’s not over 2:00.

That day I was not prepared.  I actually thought I was in over my head.  In some ways I felt like I had wasted all that time the last few months.  But really it was humbling experience.  It gave me a good perspective of why routine is important and why training is most of the work.  This last Sunday two of my friends ran the full California International Marathon here in the Sacramento area.  They had been dreaming about this for twelve months and seriously training for at least nine months.  That’s nine months of early 5 am runs during the week and 6 am long runs on Sundays.  They didn’t just wake up last Sunday and say, “I think I’m going to run a marathon today.”  There was planning and preparation and consistency that brought them to that day.

With that said I have already signed up for the Shamrock’N Half Marathon in March. I don’t want to predict where I will be, but I have mapped out a schedule for myself and I know if I want to be serious about this, I must stick to this schedule!  That’s what I’m starting with.  I’m running outside when I can, or on rainy days like today, I will use my treadmill.  That’s why I have it, right?  I will make it back to the gym.  I’m waiting until after the New Year for that one, but I have exercise videos I can do in the meantime.

That’s my plan. Creating that groove again where I feel better after I exercise than before I exercise.  It’s not going to be easy, but it is possible, I’ve done it before!  As I’m finishing this post, I can’t help but think about the following text.  At face value it sounds very much like what I’m going through right now, but if you put it into context, there is a larger picture and spiritual awakening that it tries to tell us.

Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us. Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory.

We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.

~ Romans 5:1-5 (NLT)

Mind Over Matter

When it comes to depression, there really is no mind over matter.  The problem is with your mind so the matter is just a looming weight ready to crush you.  It’s been a particularly difficult couple months.  In October I began to admit my need for change in order to jumpstart my life again.  It was actually really difficult to come to terms with this.  I decided to start meeting with a new therapist, which has been really good so far.  At my monthly visit with my psychiatrist I knew I needed to make some kind of changes.  And having already reached the max dosage of Prozac, how do I move up?  We decided to add on an additional antidepressant, Wellbutrin.  Honestly I didn’t feel any difference for the four weeks I started taking it.  I even had a pretty severe episode where I didn’t leave my house for two days straight and cut off most communication with the outside world.  Not my brightest moment.

I started getting curious as to whether this is normal.  Can a medication like this just stop working?  Turns out this is a condition called antidepressant treatment (ADT) tachyphylaxis.  Or in layman’s terms, “Prozac Poop-out”.  Doctors don’t really understand why it happens, but it is common.  It’s not specific to Prozac, as it can occur with any antidepressant.  The solutions are to increase the dosage, switch to another antidepressant or add on a supplemental antidepressant, which is what I’m doing.  The problem I’m faced with now that I know this is rationalizing why I need to continue taking Prozac.  I mean if it’s not working I need something else.  But one thing my Psychiatrist mentioned is just because it doesn’t feel like it’s working, it is making a difference.

We’ve decided to increase the Wellbutrin to see if that starts to help.  It’s just been one day at the higher dose and I think I’m starting to feel a difference.  I only say that because I woke up this morning with a strong desire to go for a 5 mile walk and I actually did.  Taz loved it; I haven’t been walking him nearly enough lately and I’ve noticed.  I haven’t been doing any exercising for weeks now and every week I tell myself I’m going to get up early and go for a walk, but I never do.  What’s different about today?  For one thing the fact that I am going to “run” a Turkey Trot 10K on Thursday probably has something to do with it.  I’m not in the shape I wanted to be when this week arrived.  I won’t be able to run like I had dreamed of doing, so my goal is to finish!  There is a two hour time limit which I think is plenty of time finish in even if I’m walking most of it.  I will attempt to run a little, but I’m not going to push myself too hard.

I’m also realizing I need to clean up the way I’ve been eating.  I’ve been pigging out on too much candy and fast food and soda, it’s pretty disgusting.  I need to start bringing lunches to work again and purge the house of the delicious rich chocolates.  Munch on carrots again and apples and drink water!  I know what to do, I need to make a realistic plan and follow through.  Nothing too overwhelming or overly ambitious, but enough to be successful and find that groove again.  This is life and it’s not easy, but I’ve come this far, there is so much more to come!

I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving week!  My family is visiting me which can be stressful in hosting, but also reassuring in knowing they can help me and work with me for the next few days.  It’s going to be a good week, I can feel it in the air!  I will post pictures and an update regarding my Turkey Trot 10K, so stay tuned…

Before I depart, I want to leave you with my favorite Thanksgiving Bible passage.  May the words fill your heart with thanks and joy to God our Creator!

Shout with joy to the LORD, O earth!
Worship the LORD with gladness.
Come before him, singing with joy.
Acknowledge that the LORD is God!
He made us, and we are his.
We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
Go into his courts with praise.
Give thanks to him and bless his name.
For the LORD is good.
His unfailing love continues forever,
And his faithfulness continues to each generation.
~ Psalm 100 (NLT)

Where have you been?

I know, that’s what everyone has been wondering… Where have I been?  How am I doing?  When am I going to write another post?  I’ve gotten this question from so many people, I think it’s time to come out of my shell and speak up. I don’t exactly know what I’m going to say, but I do know this is the most difficult post I’ve written yet.  I’m so nervous about being honest but I need the accountability more than ever before.

So how have I been doing… not well.  I’m sure you could’ve guessed that.  When I become a recluse and cut off communication, I’m actually revealing my depression.  I eventually realize the state that I’m in and the decision I need to make: continue down the path I’m on, or make a change in my mindset and routine.  I mentioned in my last post that I’m in denial.  I was hoping that by being honest about my denial I could move on to acceptance and change, but as much as I wanted to, I wasn’t ready.  Honestly, I don’t know if I’m ready now.  I’m hoping this post can help me work out whatever I need to, or at least start the process.

What is the problem?  I don’t know for sure, but here are the facts. I haven’t been to a Weight Watchers meeting in over a month. I haven’t been running, or even walking, in weeks.  I am still going to my personal trainer sessions, sometimes, but not as often as I had planned to.  My weekends have been busy off and on for a number of weeks.  When I’m not busy, I’m trying to recharge at home.  But that’s where I find myself falling into old depressive habits.  Sitting down all day in front of the TV.  Mindless shopping on Amazon.  Binge eating on whatever sweets I can find in the house, and there’s a whole lot more than there should be.  Eating every meal at the drive thru, soda is a given.  Basically, I’m up at least 5-10 lbs and I’m sliding out of control.

The first question you must want to ask me is, Are you still taking your Prozac?  Yes!  Not at exactly the same time every day, but I am taking it every day.  Although it is a happy pill, a wonder drug, it’s not the be-all and end-all for me.  I know this is more psychological than physiological right now.  I’ve given up.  That’s it, that’s the honest truth.  I have given up trying to lose weight and become healthy.  I have lost my mojo, my drive, my reason for going down this road.  I’m not giving up on life, it hasn’t come to that yet, but I’ve put my mind on cruise control and steering just enough to stay on the road.

I need a jump start.  I need to wake up from this foggy dream.  I need something to change and I’m not exactly sure what.  All I know is I can’t do it alone, because that’s what I’ve been trying to do for weeks now and it hasn’t been working.  I need help in the form of prayers and encouragement.  It’s going to be rough getting going again, but God will give me the push that I need.  The words of David express so perfectly His consistent support to our cries for help…

I will praise the Lord at all times.
I will constantly speak his praises.

I will boast only in the Lord;
let all who are helpless take heart.

Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness;
let us exalt his name together.

I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me.
He freed me from all my fears.

Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy;
no shadow of shame will darken their faces.

In my desperation I prayed, and the Lord listened;
he saved me from all my troubles.

For the angel of the Lord is a guard;
he surrounds and defends all who fear him.

Taste and see that the Lord is good.
Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him!

Fear the Lord, you his godly people,
for those who fear him will have all they need.

Even strong young lions sometimes go hungry,
but those who trust in the Lord will lack no good thing.

Come, my children, and listen to me,
and I will teach you to fear the Lord.

Does anyone want to live a life
that is long and prosperous?

Then keep your tongue from speaking evil
and your lips from telling lies!

Turn away from evil and do good.
Search for peace, and work to maintain it.

The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right;
his ears are open to their cries for help.

But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil;
he will erase their memory from the earth.

The Lord hears his people when they call to him for help.
He rescues them from all their troubles.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted;
he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.

The righteous person faces many troubles,
but the Lord comes to the rescue each time.

For the Lord protects the bones of the righteous;
not one of them is broken!

Calamity will surely destroy the wicked,
and those who hate the righteous will be punished.

But the Lord will redeem those who serve him.
No one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.

~ Psalm 34 (NLT)

Never Forget!

Dear Friends,

I never intended to take this long to write my next post.  It’s been a most eventful summer and thinking about sharing all the details of what I’ve seen and done makes me a little overwhelmed.  The climax though was my most recent trip to New York City and Philadelphia.  Although I’ve visited both cities before, having grown up on the East Coast, this was a very different trip because I was depending on public and paid transportation and otherwise traveling on foot.  I have to admit, between the four days of visiting the two cities I got over 80K steps.  Although it was great cardio exercise, returning to my boot camp workouts was a rude awakening to the necessity of remaining consistent.  But back to my adventures…

My favorite location of New York City has become Ground Zero.  I will always remember my first visit to the City when I was eight years old.  Seeing the Twin Towers was so mesmerizing.  They stood so grand and majestic casting their shadow on Lower Manhattan.  The next time I was able to visit New York was in 2005.  The destruction at the site of where those great towers once stood was very sobering.  There was a make-shift memorial and display at the site commemorating those who lost their lives that sad day.  It was the first time that September 11 felt real to me.  It brought back memory of the heartache the whole country was feeling that day.  This most recent trip to New York gave me another opportunity to see the transformation that has taken place in the last nine years.  The beautiful Freedom Tower stands in memoriam of its parent towers.  The recessed pools that cascade down into the bottomless footprint drowns out the noise of the busy city life surrounding this hallowed ground.  The new 9/11 museum was open, but unfortunately the wait to buy tickets and to get in were not part of my sightseeing agenda.  I will go back some day, but I am grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to pay my respect to the innocent and brave lives that were taken that historic day.  Each year on this day, I pray for the survivors and remember the events from now 13 years ago and how America changed that day.  I will never forget!

Never Forget

So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.
– Deuteronomy 31:6 (NLT)

With the summer coming to an end, facing reality has been more challenging than I anticipated.  I knew I would need to get back to my normal routine, but being off of it for so many weeks has really messed with my mind.  I’ll start tomorrow… Sunday will be my fresh start… I meant Monday… Even getting up for my 6 am bootcamp workouts that I’ve already paid for each month has become optional in my mind.  I know each session I miss is just money down the toilet.  And the changes I’ve made up to this point didn’t happen over night, or even in one week.  It’s been the continuous progress I make each and every week.  I think one of the reasons I’ve been putting off this post for so long is because I’ve been in denial.  Denial that I’m still on this journey.  Denial that I’ve actually quit working for this. This blog keeps me honest with you as well as myself.  I don’t like reporting that I haven’t been doing well, but I need to get back to writing each week.  So next week I will have a better report.  For both you and myself!

Summer Lovin’

It’s already the half-way point of July and it’s been a great summer so far.  I’ve definitely kept busy but in a good and happy way.  First off though, I am sad to report I am very behind on my 100 miles goal for July.  But, I’m still running hard to get in as many miles as I can.  I was probably a little too ambitious, but even if I don’t reach 100 miles, I’m running a few times a week and that’s all that matters.

I hope everyone had a Happy Fourth of July a couple weeks ago.  I celebrated the day by running my second 5K.  I was not nearly as nervous as my first one, so that took the pressure off a lot.  I planned to run with Tammy and we were going to do our usual intervals.  We started with a 1 minute run, 1.5 minute walk and didn’t bother looking at any timers or clocks or anything.  Just went where our feet took us.  At the half-way point they had a water station and we took an extra walking break so by the time we were running again we had switched intervals.  We were now running 1.5 minutes, walking 1 minute.  I asked Tammy if she wanted to continue and she was up for the challenge so we kept going on the new interval.  In the last stretch we were feeling tired but we still had a lot of strength in us to keep going.  We finished strong with a final sprint to the end.

Tammy and I about to cross the finish line!

Tammy and I about to cross the finish line!

My next goal is the 10K on Thanksgiving Day.  I need to create some kind of running plan so I can slowly but effectively build up to that distance.  A few weeks before the 10K though I will be running another 5K and my dream is to run a sub-30 minute 5K, but the closer it gets, I’ll see if that will become a reality.  I’m also excited because the 5K is going to be the Biggest Loser Run/Walk at Six Flags Discovery Kingdom.  It gives me an excuse to enjoy a day at Six Flags.

Today has been a good day for me!  The last few weeks I’ve been pretty stuck in a rut with my weigh ins.  I’ve lost and gained the same two pounds for weeks now!  Well, this week when I stepped on the scale I was pleasantly surprised to see a massive dip in my weight.  I always weigh myself first thing in the morning just to make sure I haven’t gone off the rails, so I knew it would be a good week to weigh in.  It was the best week!  I FINALLY reached my 10% goal at Weight Watchers!!  I have lost a total of 24 lbs since the beginning of the year!  And I like to remind myself that doesn’t include the 7 lbs or so that I lost prior to joining Weight Watchers.  So my total at this point is over 30 lbs lost!!  You know, it’s not easy and it’s not always fun, but as long as I keep putting in 100% I will see progress.

I’ve got a pretty solid routine right now with bootcamp training three times a week and running twice a week.  I know there is always more I could be doing, but I look at it this way, I’m doing a lot more than I was a year ago.  I’m moving in the right direction and that’s all that matters.  I’m a little nervous about the next few weeks because starting Friday I will be on vacation through the end of the month.  I’m going to try to make it to weigh in once a week with Weight Watchers, but other than that I won’t really be keeping tabs on my progress.  I won’t be going to my bootcamp classes so I will have to really focus on eating right and getting as much walking/running in as I can.  Either way, the vacation will be nice.

Since I won’t be around next weekend or for the next two weeks after that, I probably won’t write another post until August.  I have a lot of momentum right now to keep working hard.  I’m truly loving this summer because for the first time I feel like I honestly love myself.  I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished so far this year and I’m ready to keep this year going strong.  This transformation hasn’t happened over night, and it wasn’t just a snap of the finger.  There has been a lot of blood, sweat, and tears, but it’s all been worth it.  If you want to make a change in your life, just keep moving forward!  It’s as much about the journey as the destination!

As a token to represent the love of myself that is growing within me, I want to share with you the true meaning of love.

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, NLT


This summer is just flying by.  Half the year is already history.  Every month I’ve felt inspired to set a goal for myself, but unless it’s something I’m already doing, I usually don’t make it a week.  This month I am setting a new challenge, but it’s more just tracking what I’m doing and motivating myself to do more.  My challenge is to run (or walk, or hike) a total of 100 miles this month.  I’ll be using the hashtag #July100Miles to track the distances with my RunKeeper app.

It’s day two and I’ve already completed two runs, a total of almost 6 miles!  Thankfully the 100 degree heat has started to subside so I could go out for a run yesterday evening and tonight.  My run yesterday though did not go as planned.  I’m still doing intervals, 1 minute run, 1-2 minute walk.  I decided to use the interval timer feature of my RunKeeper app but also wanted to listen to music at the same time.  Well, my iPhone couldn’t quite handle that and I soon realized that my 1 minute of running was a really LONG minute and my 2 minutes of walking were almost non-existent.  I hadn’t brought my regular interval timer, so I gave up listening for the beep and walked most of the time.  I also turned around earlier than I had planned to so I didn’t go quite as far. But in the end, I still went over 2.5 miles and I still did something.

Todays run was much better.  I ran with my neighbor and we tried a 1 minute run, 1.5 minute walk interval.  It wasn’t bad.  There was a nice breeze and it was late enough we could feel the temperature dropping.  So far I am on track for this month.  Friday, for the Fourth of July, I am running another 5K and my neighbor is going to run with me.  I originally wasn’t planning to really push myself and walk more than run, but maybe we will run.

My weight finally took a drop a couple weeks ago and I reached my 20 lb. weight lose with Weight Watchers.  It was a big milestone for me.  This last Sunday I went up 0.6 lbs, but I’m trying not to dwell on it.  I know I’m doing the right stuff.  I’m still going to my gym workout three days a week and I’m running at least two days a week (probably will be more with my new challenge), so I shouldn’t fret about the number on the scale.  I wore a pair of pants last week for the first time in probably five years.  And they were my really nice REI convertible hiking pants.  It was a great feeling.  I felt like a million bucks!

I have trouble with remembering that I am the one doing this.  I know, that doesn’t really make sense.  You see, I want to give credit to other people like my friend Jenni, who initially inspired me to start this journey and make a change in my life.  Or Lacy, who I met at my original Weight Watchers meeting and helped see that this is possible, as long as I’m moving in the right direction.  Or Tammy, who keeps me accountable twice a week to go running with her and helps the three miles go by so much more quickly than when I’m by myself.  Or so many other people I encounter along this journey and help me take that next step and keep moving forward.  If it weren’t for them, I wouldn’t have the motivation, but if it weren’t for me doing it… I wouldn’t be where I am today.

I was realizing that I’m scheduled to go see my doctor next month for my follow-up appointment.  I haven’t seen him since January so it’ll be interesting to get my results.  I still have a few weeks and I’m so close to reaching my 10% goal at Weight Watchers.  I know I can do it!  I’ve gotten this far. Why slow down now?

The Great Outdoors

Has it really been almost a week since my last post?  I guess life has been keeping me busy and I lost track of time.  It’s been a good week though, I have a lot to be proud of and thankful for.  My weekend consisted of camping in the great outdoors.  I went with a group of friends to the Tahoe National Forest and spent just over 36 hours disconnected from reality.  I love camping!  I have since I was young.  It’s so quiet and peaceful and beautiful.  It’s the perfect escape and a chance to reset.


North Fork North Fork American River, Tahoe National Forest, CA

The only stressful part about camping for me is eating.  That might sound crazy, but for someone who loathes cooking in a normal kitchen with access to all the ingredients I would ever need, the idea of having to pre-plan all the meals, make sure you bring all the required ingredients and utensils, then cook with a single burner or over a campfire, my heart races and my mind goes blank or foggy.  Thankfully I was with a group large enough that I didn’t have to stress about the food.  I had my required products to bring along and I just followed directions as necessary.

However quickly did I realize that food would still be a stress factor for me this weekend since cooking for a dozen people produces a LOT of food.  And when there is a lot of food to go around, seconds turn into thirds, and it’s easy for me to become a vacuum that just sucks up the crumbs.  All weekend I was reminding myself not to eat too much, to stop eating I didn’t really need to go back for more.  I may have been a broken record to my fellow campers, but I had to do that in order to stay in control of myself.  I was most proud of myself when it came to the campfire.  I love roasting marshmallows, but I promised myself I would only roast them and eat them the second night, not the first.  Then when I did, I kept a careful count of how many I was consuming.  I only ate 3 marshmallows!!  I roasted a few more for other people, but I made sure to enjoy every bite of the ones I ate.  It was hard, especially when the others got creative with adding Reese’s cups or Mr. Goodbars with Peanut Butter to their s’mores. I did taste a bite of theirs, but I made sure not to have my own.

It was a challenging weekend, and I didn’t deprive myself, but I also didn’t ignore this journey.  I’ve worked so hard the last six months and I’m finally seeing my weight go down again, I can’t sabotage myself.  Besides the decisions of eating, I also had to think about my exercise.  Just because I’m outside doesn’t mean I automatically get 20,000 steps in a day.  I woke up early Saturday morning and took a 4-5 mile walk with a friend.  I don’t know if it was more for me or for Taz, but it was fun.  Then in the afternoon we hiked to a beautiful water hole where a few people went swimming.  The water was too cold and the day wasn’t hot enough for me to go in.  In the end I got over 17,000 steps, so it was a successful day.


Taz hiked with me to this beautiful waterfall and swimming hole.

I was feeling really good about my tracking last week and my self-control over the weekend, I knew I needed a loss on the scale to validate my hard work.  To my relief, I got just that at my weigh-in this morning.  Another 2 lbs lost!  I am officially at 21 lbs total since beginning of January.  Just 3 lbs away from my 10% goal!  This is also in addition to my greater news last week when I took measurements with my trainer.  I’ve lost about 5% of my body fat in the two months since I’ve been going to the group workouts.  My weight has been fluctuating back and forth over this time, so body fat loss reminded me that there’s so much more to this journey than the number on the scale.

I feel energized for this week and have a plan for getting my exercise in.  Tonight’s run was hard.  I was having trouble breathing and feeling very stiff and almost sore.  It was still pretty hot outside, so I’m thinking that was the reason.  Nonetheless, we got our 3 miles in and the time wasn’t too bad considering!  But if I want to get through my 6 am workout tomorrow morning, I should probably wrap this up.  I close with one of my favorite Psalms.  This weekend reminded me of how Great and Wonderful is Our God!

The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Day to day pours out speech,
and night to night reveals knowledge.
There is no speech, nor are there words,
whose voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out through all the earth,
and their words to the end of the world.
– Psalm 19:1-4 (ESV)

Tracking Goal

I feel like I have a lot to talk about, but I don’t really know where to start.  I had a good WW meeting yesterday.  Well, the weigh-in part was only okay (I lost 0.2) but the actual meeting was very motivational.  The topic for this week is BLT.  No, not the sandwiches!  Bites, Licks, and Tastes.  We discussed the importance to tracking everything you put in your mouth, even if it’s simply a bite of this, lick of that, or taste of something else.  We decided to add an S for Sips, which has made me really pause and think before filling that cup of coffee (with cream and sugar, of course) or getting that can of soda from the vending machine.

At the end of the meeting there were a few of us who shared our cell phone numbers with each other in order to text and encourage to track during the week.  Tracking has been my biggest down fall on this journey.  But this week I am committing to tracking every day.  I’m even going to track by hand in the planner rather than using my iPhone app.  I still need the app to look up the points values, but I’ve always been told the accountability of writing it down is so powerful.  Yesterday I tracked everything, even the ice cream sandwich I had for dessert.  Today, I kept the momentum going and wrote down every bite.  I’ll Instagram my tracker pages for those interested.

Part of the success of tracking is planning ahead.  My best friend bought me an amazing vegetarian cookbook for my birthday, but I’ve been too nervous to try cooking out of it.  You see, I am NOT a chef or even a cook.  I find making food very intimidating.  I know I’ll eat it no matter if it’s not very good, but I still feel like it needs to be perfect or I’ve failed.  Well, I took the plunge tonight and made two dishes out of the book for dinner.  The first one was Hot and Sour Zucchini.  A coworker gave me a zucchini from her garden last week and I wanted to cook it up special.  The recipe called for a bunch of ingredients I hadn’t heard of and didn’t have so I had to go shopping.  The premise of the recipe was to heat up peanut oil with garlic, ginger, and peppers, then add the zucchini with soy sauce, rice vinegar, and a little sugar (I just realized I forgot to add the sugar).  Then simmer it for a few minutes.


Image from cookbook


My plate of zucchini

The best thing I can say is, it wasn’t bad.  Adding the sugar would’ve helped.  I love zucchini so even if they were completely burnt, I would’ve eaten it.

The second dish I made was much easier.  It’s called Tomato Rice.  Basically, you puree some plum tomatoes with onion and cook the rice in it with vegetable stock.  I was trying to be clever and used my rice cooker, but I think that wasn’t such a good idea.  In the end it didn’t cook right because it burnt on the bottom and rice turned to mush.  I have to say though, with a little extra salt, it tasted pretty good.

There was more I wanted to talk about in this post but I think I’ll save it for another time.  Before I go, I want to thank Katie from RunsforCookies.com for including me in her Motivational Monday post this week.  Seeing my picture and reading my story there reminds me I have so much to be proud of and I really am a motivation to others.

Sick and Tired

I feel literally sick and tired today. Of what?  Of everything at the moment.  It’s been a rough week.  Monday was actually a good day.  I started the day early with a 6 am bootcamp workout.  Got a pretty good day of work in then closed the day with a friend at dinner.  If every day had been like Monday, it would’ve been a good week.  But it wasn’t.  It’s hard to imagine a day getting worse than a Monday, but it’s true.

Tuesday I woke up with a sore throat.  I haven’t had a sore throat in a while, but I knew what my body was trying to tell me although I wanted to ignore it, “You are getting sick! You need to take care of yourself.”  I went to work but gradually felt worse during the day with heavy fatigue and a slight fever.  I thought about taking the afternoon off and in hind sight I really should have, but I didn’t and the day just got worse.  Finally I had a chance to go home and I collapsed at home. The next day I had a full on cold and called in sick.  I drugged myself up and rested all day in hopes to let it pass.  I couldn’t afford missing more work and I was feeling better although not 100% on Thursday, so I returned.

The work day was pretty average.  I still felt a little under the weather, but not like Tuesday or Wednesday.  There was some stress at work around an assignment I had worked on, but I left thinking it had been taken care of.  Unfortunately I was not correct.  Let’s just say, Thursday became a very long day and night.  I was responsible for resolving another issue, even if it took me all night.  Well, it took almost the whole night, and I was so wired by the situation I only got 2-3 hours of sleep.  My work is not normally like this, and I understood I was responsible for the result and was willing to do whatever it took.

So today, after less than three hours of sleep and still fighting the cold, I am feeling very sick and tired.  Thankfully it is Friday.  I’m really looking forward to this weekend.  My close friends are visiting and we’re going to go see Wicked on Broadway.  I saw it a few years ago and absolutely loved it, so I’m really excited about seeing it again.

Although it wasn’t the best week for exercising, I was trying to be better about tracking.  I know I didn’t post any pics, but I was tracking most days.  I also attended all three of my workout groups and went for a brisk walk with my neighbor.  I’m hoping for some kind of loss, even if it’s only 0.2 lbs.  It wasn’t a good week to say the least, but I survived.  I even was rewarded today with a free car wash.  With the week closing, I’m hoping to find rest and renewal I need.  It’s just one day at a time, and one week at a time, but I know I can do it.

Before I close this post, I did work on a new page for my blog that I’m ready to share with you.  I hate making goals and putting a lot of effort into a single result, but now that I’m seeing my hard work pay off, I wanted to capture a list of this I was to celebrate and reward myself with on this journey.  I call it my 30 Before 30!.  I have created a list of 30 accomplishments I want to reach before I turn 30.  Most of them I’m already on track to completing and I wrote down just so I can cross it off.  Others I will need to put more effort or planning into fulfilling, but I know I can do it.  I have two years!  How much has happened in just six months?  I can’t even imagine where I will be in two years, but hopefully this will be a guide for me to get there!

What kinds of things do you want to accomplish in the next year or two?  Be creative but be realistic as well!  You are more capable than you can even fathom!

Mission Accomplished!

Today I ran my first official 5K race at the Women’s Fitness Festival in downtown Sacramento!  I can’t believe it.  I’ve been thinking about this day since I first signed up in January.  Although I’m not as far along in my weight-loss journey as I had originally hoped, I’m still so proud of myself for getting as far as I have.  I set a goal of finishing in 45 minutes and my final time was… well, let me tell you how I got there.  I need to back up to Thursday, that’s when this story really started.

I’ve been running with my neighbor for quite a few weeks now.  We are doing the walk-run-walk method and have advanced to an interval of 1 minute run/2 minute walk.  On Thursday night we ran about 3 miles with this interval.  I knew from the beginning that the cheap running shoes I bought wouldn’t last me very long, but I was hoping at least to race day.  Well, they’ve been starting to hurt my feet after my runs and Thursday night was especially painful.  I felt like I had developed a bruise on the bottom of my right foot in the middle of the arch.  I knew it wasn’t normal and I began to become worried about continuing to run in those shoes.

Well, on Friday I had to go to the local Fleet Feet to pick-up my race packet so I thought since I’m there I might as well get a new pair of real running shoes.  Now, for my runner readers, I know what you’re thinking: Don’t buy a new pair of running shoes right before a race.  You have to break into them first!  I talked to the salesman as he was helping me pick out the right pair and he said that although it’s not advised to change shoes at this point before a race, since my current pair are actually hurting my feet, these will be better.  So we found the perfect pair and I invested into my new hobby.

My new running shoes.  Awesome laces, courtesy of Jenni!

My new running shoes. Awesome laces, courtesy of Jenni!

Although I had not even two days to break in my shoes, I decided to go for a run Saturday morning.  I wanted to try out my new shoes and I was feeling anxious about the race.  They were great!  A world of difference between my previous pair.  When I finished that run, I felt a lot better about the race on Sunday, but I also noticed I had started developing a blister on my right heel.  I tried not to think about it and continued with my day.  By Saturday night the nerves were getting to me.  I knew what I was going to wear.  I knew what time I needed to get up to leave.  I knew where I was going in the morning.  I was ready for bed before 9 and planned to get a good sleep.  My body decided otherwise and proceeded to wake me up at 2am, then 4am, then 5am, then 5:15 my alarm went off.  Ready or not, it was time to get up to go.

I went through my routine of getting ready and was out the door by 6am.  I arrived to the Capitol by 6:30, just when my running cheerleader, Jenni, also arrived.  An avid runner herself, Jenni agreed to run with me and help pace me for this first 5K.  Having a friend to run with me made all the difference.  We were plenty early so we watched the half-marathoners start, walked around warming up, took a few pics to remember the day, then joined the pack at the starting line.  I had set a goal of 45 minutes and knew I would need walking breaks, so we mainly relied on Jenni’s Garmin to know what our pace was and how we were doing.

Pre-Race Photo Op.  Nervously excited!

Pre-Race Photo Op. Nervously excited!

The actual race was really good.  We used the city blocks to determine when we’d start and stop running.  It made the whole thing go by a lot faster.  There was a lot of weaving in and out of people, especially since my pace wasn’t real consistent.  But everyone was so nice and polite, I never felt bad about passing them.  The one thing I learned from running with a more experienced runner is that I need to work on my breathing.  Every time we slowed to a walk, Jenni would need to remind me to breathe deeply.  Once I got the hang of taking deeper breaths, I did notice an improvement in my performance.  We finished strong at a solid time of 45:13, just meeting my goal of 45 minutes.  There were a lot of booths including a hearty breakfast and a free massages.  We took everything in and enjoyed ourselves along the way.   It was a morning I’ll never forget.

This is only just the beginning though.  My next race is another 5K on July 4th.  But I really need to start focusing on training for my 10K on Thanksgiving Day.  I’ll be running that with my sister, and we’re both really looking forward to it.  The whole experience today was very surreal for me, but definitely something I can’t wait to do again!


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 142 other followers