Bring it

Three mantra’s for 2018:

1) resiliency
2) mental toughness*
3) consistency beats intensity**

I’ve already signed up for 2 half marathons (May & September) and the 150 mile bike ride in August.

I predict that this will be one of my most active years ever. The past 2 weeks I’ve been working on balance and strengthening my Achilles tendon. For that reason I didn’t run the Frosty 5 at the end of the year, but have been doing more strength training routines. Mostly walking getting between 5-7 miles in per day.

Next week begins my training for the May 20 half. A goal is 2:30. B goal is under 3. C goal is finish strong and happy.

Started publishing a new fit/strength website/podcast with a friend of mine. Definitely ramping things up!

It really is going to be my best year yet! Whoa! Look out!

Number 2* mental toughness from the marathon training academy podcast. Number 3** from Transformation Planet/Daily diary of a winning loser.


Working the Plan

We are more than 1/2 way thru February and ski season is winding down for me.  My lessons concluded last week, but I went skiing twice this week with wonderful conditions.  The local ski area will probably close on March 12 but I will be busy from March 4th on, so I only have one or two weeks left. Definite improvement this year of skiing more on the front of my skis.

I signed up for the Akron Marathon Relay again. It was so motivational last August and September getting ready for it. Having a big goal after the MS150 bike ride was wonderful.  And the actual race was simply delightful. Probably one of the highlights of my year last year!

Hopefully I have a wonderful experience again this year. Although it’s difficult to duplicate wonderful weather, a great team and pretty strong training. I did the 5.7 at a sub 12 minute mile pace. I’m hoping to improve that for 2016.

I’ve been spinning twice a week fairly regularly since December so that I keep my seat until spring when outside riding really starts.

On black Friday, I signed up for 4 personal training half hours at my gym, but still am *shy* about actually scheduling the sessions. Now at least I know what I want to work on. Weightlifting. I have always been intimated to step into the weight area of my gym. Not because the people aren’t nice. But it’s all inside my head.

Last Saturday I talked to my trainer (I take group exercise HIIT classes with him all the time) and he acted like “NBD” – no big deal.

But when I got home, I decided to jot down why I am reluctant to sign up. It blew me away. I had 23 reasons. About 90% of them boil down to self conscious.

But I had no idea I was that weird about it. I decided to read a bunch about it on the internet, watch videos, try a little bit in the living room with the dumb bells watching a youtube video and build my nerve up.

I also listed one by one answers to myself for the 23 worries that I have. I wrote them as if I was chatting with a friend. It’s sooooo easy to dismiss someone else’s anxiety about trying something new. When I read the reasons as if I am an outsider, they are laughable. However I won’t share them on here because, on the inside, to me, they are very real.

During February I’ve been working out about 50% of the time – but I’m counting skiing as one of my workouts. Technically it is not, but I sure do feel exhausted afterwards because of all the concentration on the moves and trying to keep warm. After my 1 1/2 hour lesson each Weds night I’m wiped out. Also trying not to have the obligatory beer up in the bar afterwards. I’ve been bringing my bottle of flavored water and sipping that instead. Hate to wipe out every calorie burned (plus) with one lousy beer!

Also been counting my macros using a free app from Mike Vacanti. He’s a young guy in NYC who posted a really great video (with the exception of the swear words) about why it’s so important to exercise for 58 year old women. Here’s the video (ignore his bad language. I think he just hasn’t figured out if he’s going to talk to people like me, it’s a big turn-off.)

I’ve read thru his blog and watched a bunch of his videos. His style is a bit ADD, with quick cuts on his videos and a variety of mini-rants, but he is likable enough and very passionate about what he’s trying to accomplish.

Meanwhile I am continuing to try to combat the February dulldromms in NE Ohio.  Today is gorgeous. One of the 70/365 we get sunshine! Gotta love days like today!

Steps to Maintaining. So Simple. So Hard.

This PPT webinar talk about how values lead to thought patterns which lead to actions and actions lead to outcomes inspired me to figure out why I’ve been struggling for the months since I hit goal (149 pounds in July 2012) to not gain back  the weight on and off over the past 35 months.

I’m up 10% to 155.3 or 63 pounds lost, 6.3 gained.  I did get all the way down to 143 for a minute, but 147 to 149 is where I want to maintain.

So I spent a few minutes this morning analyzing what I do to keep if off and trying to figure out where my weakness is.

This statement is a “duh” obvious one, but is the fact of the matter:

Keeping weight off is a combination of eating healthy, exercise and enough sleep.

Each element is hard in it’s own way with internal struggles and external struggles. But just setting up some plain old habits and routines for keeping the actions and doing the actions without interruption will keep the end result.

1) Eating Healthy Actions:

  • meal planning
  • shopping
  • meal preparation
  • prep snacks, lunches and pre dinners
  • doing dishes
  • putting away

Feeling good, not feeling cravings. Not making a decision each time I eat.

Hard Part about Eating Healthy

  • going out with friends
  • attending a party/BBQ
  • restaurants
  • treats
  • 3 oclock duldrooms/bored at work

2) Doing Exercise Actions:

  • getting up earlier
  • putting on exercise clothes
  • go to gym
  • take a shower


My friends at gym. Endorphin hormones on the drive home. I actually really like to exercise.  Bike riding with friends is awesome. Hiking is good. Walking the dogs is good (except for the dog hair in my car.)

Hard Part about Exercising

  • Injuries have limited my habits (do my hip exercises every morning right away!)
  • Embarrassed that I can’t do what I used to do
  • Easier to hide at home

3) Getting Enough Sleep Actions:

  • Limit caffeine
  • Go to bed before 10
  • Evening routine
  • Melatonin

Positives: When I get enough sleep, everything in life is easier and happier. Definitely affects my mood.

Hard Part about Getting Enough Sleep

  • Watching TV at night
  • Not going to bed, but falling asleep on the couch
  • Netflixs
  • The “doing one more thing” syndrome
  • Waking up in the middle of the night 3 am ish and not being able to fall asleep again
  • Naps (are they good or bad?… they feel to good to be bad!)

Next post should be, what I’m going to do about the hard parts to make them easier, right? Anyone have any good suggestions for me?

Pain on the right side

Too much time researching the pain. Sciatica? hamstring? quads? MS? Cancer? Slipped/herniated disc? Feels like a charlie horse that moves around but doesn’t really go away.

Now the pain is further down on the right side of my right shin bone. and inside my hip. and around the outside of my thigh. Muscles are tight deep underneath. I think it’s a nerve because it started high on my glute and worked its way down the thigh. All day yesterday and thru the night I’ve been rotating ice packs as they melt.

I even took an ice pack to a business meeting at Panera and sat on it for the hour and 15 so I could get thru the meeting with out shouting out with pain.

Today I have an appointment with a sports massage doctor at a chiropractor. They helped me 2 1/2 years ago when my Achilles flared up and I’ve kept that at bay with only slight twinges since. I only scheduled a 1/2 hour appointment, and it feels like I should have made it an hour and a half.

Pain level has gone from a 5 or 6 when I woke up to just a mild 2 now that I have ibuprofen and I’m sitting on ice again.

But when I move, reach high, sit too long or whatever a shooting pain down my right side.

Hopefully the doctor can make a good difference. This is the 3rd time in the last 9 months I’ve gone for a massage for this same problem. First time with the hamstring pull on June 21 I swore I was going to get a massage once a month. I think it is worse this time. I’ve got to figure out how to fix this quicker and better and prevent it.

Maybe I should give up swinging the kettle bell. I think that’s what did it this time.

Getting into the MO

Motivation. Momentum. Getting and keeping the Moment.

I find it so easy to let it slip awaaaay. Feeling like I’m hungry right now and just have to eat something off plan. Or worse. Fighting that feeling like I don’t feel like making a plan. Or if I have the plan… I don’t feel like following it! I just want to be fit and strong and healthy. But not think about it.

How to STAY MOTIVATED… this from one of the blogs I read each morning to get me back into the place where it matters:

It is so much easier for me to wake up, drink a big glass of water, take my vitamins, do my yoga, and get my food set up for a healthy, clean, Paleo day, etc IF I did it the day before.

Every healthy action, every good day spurs another one.

I read somewhere… several times, so probably several somewheres, that the weight we wake up with is the result of what happened the day before. And that weight loss happens in the kitchen (not the gym). Going to the gym has become so much easier. But keeping focused on what happens in the kitchen is still very hard. And maybe it’s not really the kitchen. Maybe it’s the grocery store. Or specifically what goes into the grocery cart.

Yesterday, while I was doing some research for a project for work, I drove past a Wendy’s. And I thought to myself, I can’t remember the last time I went there. It was a long, long time ago. Like maybe 6 or 7 years ago. Since I started doing weight watchers, I don’t go to fast food. At all. Subway is the only one. and I don’t get sauce on my sandwich… The worst I do is banana peppers on a turkey sub. Or by a 12 inch (thinking I’ll eat the 2nd half for dinner and eat it 15 minutes after I wolfed down the 1st half.)

But it is so so so much better than I used to be. It’s like that person is gone.

I used to buy the 2 pound of shredded cheddar cheese from the grocery store each week. And it would be gone by the end of the week and I’d buy another one. And I think I was the only one eating it. And pizza was at least once a week. I’d buy 2 large pizzas… and eat almost a full large one myself. Now I know that a slice is 7 points. Yikes. Too much. I used to take my coffee with a lot of milk and sugar. I weaned myself off the sugar about 20 years ago. And the milk into 2%, low fat, Skim or nonfat to nothing. Just black coffee.

At the gym, started out at 1.5 miles an hour on the treadmill while I edited videos on my computer. Then walked the track at the gym. Then took a spinning class. And someone said to me, you should cross train. Don’t just spin. So I did yoga/pilates fusion. Then Yoga. Signing up for the boot camp class was a huge step! Now I’m a 5 day a week at the gym person.

Keeping the motivation is to keep taking baby steps forward. If anyone told me to give up pizza. Or fast food. Or my 2 lbs a week cheese. Or any of the millions of little things I did, I would say I couldn’t do it. But one baby step today. At a time. Yep, I can do it.

I’m working on meal planning now. For the past 4 days I’ve actually typed into MyFitnessPal my food diary in the morning before I ate anything. It made me plan lunch and dinner before I ate it. The 28 day detox made it easier because I got a new “list” of foods I’d either eat or say to myself, I don’t really like that, I’d rather have… X. But the point is, I made the decision earlier in the day, when I wasn’t hungry.

Deciding NOT under pressure. When I’m feeling like I have to eat. Right now (in the early morning) I could take it or leave it. Momentum is the tiny steps forward when it looks like you’re not even moving. And brushing off the step back as a momentary thing – focus on the forward momentum.

No Grains No Gains – Too Extreme for Me

There are several bloggers that I read every morning to focus my mind set for the day.

Sunny Coconut: Jeanette C
I eat Paleo & I run: Leigh C
Garden Girl: Karen P
Roni’s Weigh: Roni N

Some of them have chosen to do the Paleo (no grains/no processed food)… others have thrown away the scale and use clothes to keep accountable.

I learn a little bit more each time I read one of their posts, but I’m still not there for NO grains. I’ve definitely revised the grains I do have, over time. But I think one of the keys to “keeping my weight off” the past 2 years 4 months is balance.

  • Drinking lots of water (lots of water) helps to balance when I’m going out with my “regular” friends who tend to focus on all the “bad” foods/drinks as part of a “celebration”
  • Maintaining a strict 3 days high intensity exercise habit at the gym and developing new friends there
  • Creating a healthy lifestyle habits of bike riding with yet another group of friends and having “healthy” pot lucks after (that’s where I first had quinoa, kale etc.)
  • At least one night a week dinner of all veggies. Love roasted veggies. Love mashed cauliflower. Only one or 2 nights where I eat grains.
  • Focus on lean protein and LOTS of veggies.
  • Zero point soup in the fridge each week to eat FIRST.
  • Crock pot paleo dinner ready when I walk in the door at night.

If the foods for “eating right / eating healthy” are prepared and ready to eat, I’ll go to them first, every time. The problem with grains, it’s just so easy to grab and eat and done and then then sugar is doing a number on my body chemistry.

10/7/2007 HW: 212
March 2013 LW: 143
11/7/2014 Current: 152.6

And I’m not ready to throw away the scale. I need that in my face every morning.

Bad Situation: Still haven’t figured out how to resist when it’s starring me in the face. Pizza at an open house. Homemade hot chocolate cookies with ice cream to “share” dessert at the table.  I guess that’s where I should pop in the gum.  It’s the buffet. Need more tools and strategies of how to not even take a little.

Although my weight is up from the low of 143,  I have gained muscle. My jeans are 8/10.