Friday, January 1, 2016

2016 Streaking & Goals

Here we are at the first day of 2016 and I haven't blogged here in two years. My exercising and health have been on the back burner for just as long. No more! I have a clear plan now and am determined to succeed this time-for good. It may seem like a big change in lifestyle, but I am the type that needs to go all or nothing. I cannot just "sample" and trust myself to not binge-I have to create rules for myself and stick to them. I plan on streaking this year.

Run at least one mile every day in 2016.
No more junk food-no chips, sweets, etc. My only exception is hot chocolate because my house is cold and I don't like coffee!

Do something creative twice a week.
Start (and finish!) a Bible study.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Love Run & Shamrock Shuffle

I haven't been running very much. The combination of a nasty cold that just won't quit and the intense cold of this winter has made it nearly impossible to breathe while running outside (I hate my treadmill). I have been trying to get back into it though. In February I participated in the New Richmond Racing Series' Love Run. I hadn't run in over a month and didn't have big expectations for the race. I think I was one of the last ones in, and finished at 36:49. I would have been really upset with myself if I had finished at that time last year, but I am so out of running shape that I was just happy that I didn't walk at all, I finished, and even finished faster than my first few races despite the lack of training. 

Last weekend I ran in the NR Racing Series' Shamrock Shuffle. Again, I didn't get out nearly as much as I would have liked and with so much ice, I didn't go far the few times I did go out. I felt better during the run. There were more people, and I was happy that I was able to keep someone in view the whole race-and even saw several people and there were actually 4-5 behind me as well. I thought I must have really improved since the previous month and finished at 36:48. Yes, you read that right, I took off a whooping one second from last month's time. sigh. 

Now that the weather is starting to get nicer during the day, I am dealing with a lot of ice from the refreeze overnight. I have a course I like to run, but it is along busy streets and requires me to stick to the sidewalks-which have the worst ice. I have modified my route to just run around my neighborhood, but I don't enjoy that. A mile feels so much longer when I'm running  in the 'hood, but at least I can run in the street without worry that I'll get hit by a car. It's so dark in those areas that I use a flashlight and the headlights are extremely obvious. It beats waddling along on ice and I'll resume my preferred route once the weather stops refreezing nightly. I have one more 5K that I am already signed up for in July and am looking for cheap local races. I heard about a 5K/10K in May and might sign up for the 10K to get motivated to log more miles. I need to do a bit more research about the race and course before I decide for sure. 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

PAD #5: Meal Planning

The photo above pinpoints how I feel about meal planning. I think a large part of my problem is that my family won't eat what I cook, especially when I'm eating healthy. I end up cooking a meal for me, another for my kids, and then my husband will throw something together for himself, stating that he "likes food with flavor." He hates chicken, and that is one of my staples. I feel like we waste so much money on food! 

PAD #4: Fitness Gadget

I have been trying to decide whether or not to buy a fitness tracker. I've wanted a FitBit Flex for years and even posted on Facebook asking if any friends had one they were looking to get rid of. A friend turned me on to the Misfit Shine, which is the round one in the photo. I also looked in to the Jawbone Up a little bit, but wasn't as impressed with the features of that one for the money. Looks and flexibility wise, I love the Shine. It can be worn on a clip on clothing, on a bracelet, or as a necklace. It is also a clock. I am concerned that all three of the reviews I read mentioned the tapping process of working the device to be touchy and frustrating. I also wish it could sync to more systems. I would have to use one of my work iPads for syncing, as it only works with iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch devices. It also syncs into it's own "Shine Points," which I think would be annoying to get used to and transfer into calories and whatnot for my own tracking purposes. I like the functionality of the Flex better, but let's face it, it's ugly. I'd love the automatic syncing to Lose It! and it's own website, but I'd also have to charge it (the Shine uses a button cell battery that lasts 4-6 months), and I'd have to wear that ugly thing on my wrist every day. I got as far as the check out on the Misfit site and had second thoughts. I've also been bidding on both the Shine and Flex on eBay. So far no luck striking a great deal there. If anyone reading this has any experience with any of these devices, I'd love feedback before buying! I am extremely poor, so this is a huge decision for me!

PAD #3: New Challenge

I challenge myself to think of this every time I am having a craving and to make the right decision. 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Photo a Day #2: GOALS

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Today was full of victories, which I am choosing to focus on and be happy about. It's nice to remember how good it feels to make great choices for myself! 

1. Despite not getting to bed as early as I wanted to, I got up and ran this morning. This is awesome for many reasons; it was the first time in a month, the high today was -11, and it felt good. I was planning on doing 2 miles, but only lasted 1.8. Good enough for me, for now. 

2. When I got to work, there was a chocolate truffle on my desk from a student. I put the offending sweet in my purse, brought it home, and gave it to my husband. 
3. My lunch was mostly fruits and veggies (see above), and I managed to resist the gravy for the mashed potatoes AND the sugar cookie-which I know from experience is delicious. Upon getting into the teacher's lounge, I discovered a large plate of cookies someone brought in, but managed to not even sample a speck! 
4. I have gotten my Running AHEAD training program up and running, and plan on using it for the whole year to keep my exercising on track. 
5. Evening is my hardest time; kid food everywhere and my desire not to waste it, my hubs is not on board with eating healthy, so I have to avoid his purchases as well. I came home, ate a French Dip for lunch and two clementines for a snack. That's it. NO SODA!! 

These may not seem like huge victories for some, but they are big to me and I plan on making a big deal about them to help keep me motivated to continue. I also joined the Panera Challenge on Lose It! which will get me eligible for prizes along my journey for the next six weeks. Finally, I am bidding on a FitBit Flex on eBay. I keep getting outbid, because I'm cheap but maybe one will come through eventually. 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


Well, here we are at the beginning of another new year, and I am not so happy with where my health is. I am frustrated with myself, as when I was at the height of my weight loss I thought it was so easy, why hadn't I been doing it all along? And now, I'm paying for those thoughts with laziness and lack of motivation. However, with renewed motivation thanks to the new year, the Sisterhood of the Shrinking Jeans, and friends also restarting their Lose It! accounts, I am hopeful that this year will be MY year. I decided to start small, with short term and long term goals, so that I have things I can check off the list as I go, instead of just looking for the end prize like I did last time I lost weight. I got down to 158 last time, and am saddened that I am back up to 180. It is certainly my own fault, with horrible eating and lack of exercise. I haven't ran in a month! That's crazy for me, who was running 5-6 days a week for about a year. I am also rededicating myself to publicly posting what I've been up to here. I know not many people read this, but maybe my readership will increase and everyone can help me be accountable for my goals. 

I did day 1 of the Sisterhood's January fitness calendar; Squats & Pushups, and also their day 1 photo challenge, which I hope to keep up and post here. Here are their calendars for these two challenges. 

In addition to these motivators, I will be starting to use RunningAHEAD again. I love this site. It is not just for running, despite the name. I put in my training plan for all my exercises, and it will email me what I need to do the next day and what I was supposed to do that day. I get my email on my phone, which makes it very easy to remind me what to do. I reference the email as I am working out to see if I have done everything I told myself to do. I don't know why, but seeing it in print makes me more motivated to actually do it. Once the exercises are completed, I can log into the site and mark them completed. If I feel like it, I can even record things like how I felt, the temp, wind, etc to manage how well I push myself in different situations. 

With all of this in mind, here are my short and long term goals, starting NOW-because tomorrow never comes.

Short term;
  • Stop drinking soda. My husband is solidly addicted to soda, and lately I have been noticing myself grabbing a can out of convenience instead of going to get water. How hard is it really to go to the sink? I will stop. NOW. 
  • Stop eating sweets. I know, many of you are thinking just use portion control, don't deprive yourself! However, I have no portion control. I'll tell myself "I'll just have one Oreo" and the next thing I know a whole row is gone and I have a gut ache. So. NO. More. 
  • Find [and use!] more healthy Crock Pot meals. Let's face it, with a full time job, three kids between the ages of two and five, dance class, gymnastics, Awana...the Crock Pot is my BFF. So many of those recipes are in fact a disaster for my healthy goals. I have one cookbook that is healthy Crock Pot meals, but most of them are very high in calories. 
Long term;
  • Meet my 2014 running goals; Let's face it, this is how I will stay motivated to exercise. I have to stay the course this year, and not accept laziness like I did in 2013. 
  • Get a good night's sleep every night. Now, this is not totally up to me. Like I mentioned above, I have three young kids. There are simply nights that they are sick or needy and I will end up with them. However, I will no longer stay up late to read or watch Netflix when I should be working on my solid eight hours of rest. I hope to be in bed-lights out by 9:30-10:00 on weekdays and 11:00 on weekends. 
  • Run 313 days this year. Yep, I just added that. It's a lofty goal, and one that I'm not positive I can reach, but if I do, it will mean I averaged one rest day per week and ran six days a week. I did that once. I can do it again. I can also see life getting in the way of this one. 
  • Exercise e.v.e.r.y. single. day. Today I did the Squat/Push up challenge and planked for one minute. Not huge, but it felt good, and remembering how good it feels will be a key to my success and ultimate victory over laziness. 
I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed with some of these goals, but I feel that goals are meant to stretch us and if I'm certain I can easily attain them all they won't me making me work for them. So, here goes nothing, bring it on, 2014!