Tuesday, October 6, 2009

I almost did it!

Last week I mentioned that I took a shot at one of the goals I had set for 2009.  I climbed the stairway of Hell to Heaven (aka the Grouse Grind).  Here's my post on that attempt.  My goal had been to climb it under 50 minutes and last week I climbed it in 58 minutes and 42 second (which was a HUGE improvement from when I did it last year).  I decided after that climb that maybe 50 minutes was too lofty for this year and I tabled it.

This past weekend however I decided to get out there and give it another go.  The advantage I had this time was I knew my interval times at the 1/4 markers and how long it took me to do each segment.  So I figured on pushing each section just a little bit harder.  I was hoping to shave another minute or two off of my total time. 

I started off and pushed it hard right from the beginning because I was pretty sure I could do the first 1/4 quite a bit faster.  Last time at the 1/4 mark my time was 16:47, this time I got there in 15:14.  Cool!!!  Based on that I knew I could finish it faster.  But I had pushed hard and decided to take a short 20-30 second break to catch my breath again.

Then I pushed on through the next 1/4 to the halfway mark.  Last week I got there in about 28 minutes, so I figured this time I would be there around 27.  But ... I got there in 25 minutes ... that's another few minutes improvement.  Took another short break to catch my breath.

The third 1/4 last week I got to in 44 minutes and this time I got to that marker in 38 minutes!  I was now overall 6 minutes ahead of my previous time.  That got me totally pumped up and didn't even want to stop to catch my breath this time.  Though I figured without the stop I would probably tire out a bit and not complete the last quarter any faster.  I figured my finish time would be around 53-54 minutes and I was on cloud 9 with that.

I start to get tired and was considering taking a little break.  But I looked at my watch and thought no, you've got 5 minutes or less - push through it!  Then I looked up and saw DAYLIGHT.  OMG I was there already!!!!  Immediately my adrenaline started pumping and I RAN to the finish marker.

My time this time .....

Yup, 50 minutes and 40 seconds making me a FULL EIGHT MINUTES faster than last week.  How the heck did I do that???

When I reached the top this time I was just so excited, too excited to be tired.  I felt like yelling at the top of my lungs and could not wipe the smile off my face.  I immediately went and called my husband.

Afterwards I wandered around the mountain top (it's a huge tourist attraction and there's lots to see).  I actually jogged along the trail for a while and felt like I could go run 10K no problem.  That energy level stayed up all day.

Don't ask me how I improved that much in a week.  Maybe I'm eating better, who knows.  Ahhh, so happy!  So proud!  I literally felt like I could do ANYTHING!


As some of you may know, Syl put forth a challenge this month that included not getting on a scale (any scale, not even the produce scale in the grocery store - hahha).  I didn't actually take up that challenge, but I did think about it alot.

I wasn't really sure if I could do it.  Like many of us, I'm a chronic weigher.  Usually just once or twice a day, but often more, sometimes on more than one scale, sometimes multiple times in a row.  I don't know if the results on the scale really affects my moods, but I do know that it controls me.

So I thought I'd give it a try and see how I felt.  The first couple days was weird, I had to remind myself not to use the scale.  The 3rd night I thought ... no one will know if I just get on, heck they don't even know I'm avoiding it.  But I did, I stuck to it.  Since then I have fleeting thoughts of  "oh, I didn't weigh myself this morning" (after I've eaten, which is normally a no-no).  Or thinking about what I'm eating in the evening that might affect the scale the next morning (I know you've done it...).

On that 3rd night when the scaling was calling me I threw my clothes on it ....

....and haven't moved it since.  It may just stay there for quite some time. :)

I don't really want to remove my scale because it's not like it's just MY scale.  Other family members use it (and don't have the problem I do).  I don't see why I should take it away from them.  I'm the one who needs to learn to deal with.

So ... I don't know how long I will stay off of it, but at the moment I'm feeling a great freedom.  We'll see how this plays out.  I figure it's worth the try.


I have also recently made the switch from counting Weight Watchers points to counting calories using Sparkpeople (like Syl as well).  I've tried it before but it's never lasted more than 2 days and I was still counting points along with it.  It's now been about a week and a half and I've done it every day (even the day I had 2000 calories of not the greatest choices).

I'm loving that you can see not only your calories, but the breakdown of fat, carbs & protein.  I can map out my planned meals for the day and then make adjustments to have a more balanced diet.  Plus, I can see where some days I got a little high or low in one area, I balance it out over the rest of the week.  It doesn't feel so ... ummmm .... like you failed to meet some guideline, because you can see the bigger picture over the whole week.

The funny thing is, some days I count the points just for curiousity sake and I find that in general I'm sticking pretty much to the point target I had for weight watchers and rarely going over - which is funny because when counting points I often had a hard time sticking to that target.

I find that because I'm balancing everything that I'm just feeling more satisfied.  Some days I even have a hard time reaching my calorie limit, but then I can find something (like almonds) that fills up the categories that I need.


Susan said...

Go Heidi ! Go Heidi ! Go Heidi ! You make me want to go find some stairs that go up a mountain and give them a whirl ! Your a super hero woman !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Bare It All said...

That is so awesome!!! You did it purely with the will power you had built up. I think you were always physically capable. :) I wish I could see this thing in person. Awesome!

Syl said...

Heidi, I love the energy in this post. I do have one request though, when you do it this weekend and come in at 40 minutes, would you please bring a camera with you because I'd love to see that smile on your face when you reach the top :-)

Laura said...

That is awesome! Congrats on the success!! I tried Sparkpeople once and like you I didn't stick with it. I currently track my calories through a site called My Calorie Counter, but maybe I should give Sparkpeople another try. I originally liked the concept of the site.

Again congrats!

Missy said...

Good for you on all three things! That is amazing progress with their steps. I'm just SUPER impressed you would do it again. I think I would do it once and just be glad it's over ;o)

I'm glad you're liking SparkPeople. I have tried it but haven't gotten the hang of it. The more I hear the more people love it though...

Have a great day!

Tamara said...

Heidi I think we need to get you some tights and a cape. You are amazing! I would love to say that you've inspired me to get my exercise mojo back can we just say how awesome I think you are instead!

I like your scale efforts! Very creative. :)

I find the Sparkpeople website overwhelming but I do like the features you guys talk about. My concern is that I make so much of my own food and recipes. I haven't figured out how that is handled on Sparkpeople.

Continuous Changes said...

Wow, 8 minutes!?!?! That's so awesome!! Congratulations!

I love sparkpeople! Although, i'm not tracking right now on it. I use a food journal and then i'll put all my information in on Sundays! It's such a great website!

Christina said...

Yay! good for you!!! When I first did the Grouse Grind it took me almost 2 hours! ha ha.I still can't do it in under 1 hour :(