Thursday, January 28, 2010

Vegas baby???

Thanks everyone!  I'm very excited about my new toy.  Now when I get to use it next ... that's the big question.

I'm making leeway on my bookkeeping, should be done tonight.  But ... I seem to be having more issues with my foot (and a hip).  So, I made an appt for tomorrow to get it looked at and we'll see what Dr Johnny has to say!  The foot has hurt on/off for quite a while now (more off than on) so I'm thinking that's a corrective issue.  But since some time in December I get an achy right hip after a run, sometimes during if it's very cold.  When I lay on that side it quite hurts.  I'm hoping it's in relation to the foot thing and not a completely different injury.  Bah-humbug!!!

I've been resting for a couple days now and the foot is sorer today.  That makes no sense to me, but I'm not exactly an expert.  I put a heat compress on it, which seems to make it feel better.

So last night my husband came home and said he's decided we should head south for spring break.  WHAT?  For quite a few years we went to Arizona in the spring, but the last couple years we couldn't pull it off and a few weeks ago we decided that we weren't going to go this year either.  But he's decided that he really wants to go.  I'm not getting my hopes up yet and I still don't really think we should go .. but we'll see.

The thing it really puts a wrench in is I was planning my first half marathon during the time that we would go.  I really don't want to postpone it until later.  I'm afraid another year will pass me by and I won't do it.  So ... hubby says "why don't you just pick one in Las Vegas and we'll stop there on the way down?".  

At first I thought, yeah right!  But then I let it sink in and started thinking "How COOL!".  So I did a little preliminary search and found the Red Rock Canyon Half Marathon in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Then my little pea brain went into action and I thought, hey, isn't there a fellow blogger doing this race.  And yes, yes there is .... Alicia @ Alicia Runs.

So how cool would that be?  Not only would I run my first half in a different country - in Nevada nonetheless, but I could also have a blogger meet-up!

Like I said, I'm not getting my hopes up too high yet, we'll see how it plays out.  If it does then I've got 37 days!  37 days to not only be half marathon ready (that doesn't concern me too much, I could do it now), but also 37 days to be bikini ready to park my butt in the warm Arizona sun!!!!  Yikes!  I'll need to get bikini shopping as well.....

Hope everyone is having a great day!!!!!


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

New Toy...


For a while now I've been pretty envious.  I read people's race reports or just reviews of their daily runs and often see these types of little comments:

"I checked my pace and ....."
"I ran 9.65 miles at an average pace of ......"

These comments often make me feel a little jealous.  I'm a total numbers gal.  I gotta know what I can do, what I want to do, and that I did it. 

I have created an excel spreadsheet to add up my mileage and I've also created formulas to calculate my pace per mile, pace per km, etc.....  So this numbers thing is something that really works for me.

During a race it KILLS ME when they don't put out mileage markers and I have no idea where I am on a course and no idea (other than by judging how I feel) what my pace is.  My best race so far is when they had someone at the 1Km mark shouting out your time and at every 2Km marker we passed a time clock.  I was able to judge where I was at and adjust accordingly.

Maybe this is just because I'm new-ish to racing, but I have a hard time judging when I should or shouldn't push.  Sometimes I push too early and run out of gas and sometimes I wait too late and then scramble to try to make up time and finish the race knowing I had more in me to give.  I really hate when that happens.

So .... after very brief consideration (10 minutes reading reviews online and a couple of messages to Syl) I went to Costco last night and bought myself the Garmin Forerunner 305!  I had a little money put aside that I'd received unexpectedly and was waiting to use it for something I really wanted just for.  This was it!

Heeeheeeeee .... I was like a kid in a candy store!  While waiting for my daughter, I sat in the car and read the manual and was actually giggling with delight at all the neat things this little puppy can do.

I won't have a chance to really put it to the test until this weekend, but at lunch today I went for a 1 mile walk .. ahem 1.05 mile walk ... and I'm totally giddy!


I was shocked yesterday to see the results of our race posted already.  Typically they take 3-4 days, so this was quick.

Heidi's Stats...
Time:  58:31
Overall Place:  53rd out of 105
Age Group Place:  4th out of 16
Women's Place:  8th out of 44

I feel pretty darn good about that.  Yeah, yeah ... maybe I'm manipulating the stats until it makes me feel good, but so what :).

Hubby finished in 52:05 - last year 57:29.

Fastest in my age group (and also fastest woman overall) was 47:20.  Fastest overall was a male under 20 with 37:05.  Oh to be that fast!!!  WOW!


The next couple of days are a bit tough on me.  I've got another bookkeeping deadline to meet by Friday for our personal company and it's literally taking up every spare moment I have.  I haven't even cooked dinner the last two nights (thank goodness for a MIL who lives right next door!).

So no workouts at all until it's complete.  Sucks because this week was supposed to be my heavy weights week.  But I'll get right back at it.  I guess the good side is my foot is really getting a pretty good rest.

Oh, and if you're looking for a good ab workout to try check this out:

I came across this today via Desitnation: Athlete's blog and it looks like a good one to put on the roster.

Hope everyone is having a great day!!!!!


Monday, January 25, 2010

10K (??+) Trail Race Report

Yesterday the hubby & I did another trail race.  The stars aligned once again and we had good weather (we are notorious for rain at this time of year so no rain is a minor miracle).

When my alarm went off in the morning I was still tired and did not want to get up.  But I was feeling fairly hungry and knew I had to eat something before we left.  I just had a piece of toast with peanut butter.  I didn't want to have too much and upset my tummy.

I was hoping to leave the house about 8:15 leaving us lots of time to get our numbers and do a long warm up.  At 8:20 I couldn't find my husband.  Eventually I found him outside CHANGING THE OIL ON MY CAR!  The race started at 9AM - ack!!!  I mean, yeah thanks, my car needed the oil change - but come on!

Anyhow, he came in, had a quick shower and when we arrived, there was still a huge line-up of late registrants.  Luckily we were pre-registered so we got our numbers quickly and still got in a good warm-up.  I took an Ibuprofen as a precaution, but everything felt great and I expected a pretty good race.

We started off on a somewhat narrow path (I don't know why they do this!).  Unfortunately we were a bit further back than maybe we should have been.  So the 200+ runners start off at the pace of a snail going backwards upside down - ridiculous.  Then as the faster runners were trying to pick through - past the people who for some reason figure they should start out running side by side with their friends, yakking & taking up the whole path.  This makes me angry!  If you wanna yak, fine, but stay off to the side until the crowd seperates and then enjoy your merry time.  GRRR!  I try to make a point of staying to the right and only moving over to pass, then go back over.  It's like driving to me ... mind you, many people don't obey that rule on the road either. :(

So this poor lady gets sandwiched between a few people and I don't know if someone ran her over or if she tripped or what but she goes down - HARD!  I was a few people over but I saw her land face first, in the gravel, with her hands behind her back.  When she lifted her head, her nose was completely scratched and bleeding.  There was a good half dozen people helping her already so we carried on, but I sure hope she's OK.  They really should start with a few waves.

We ran this same course last year, though I only did 5K and hubby did 10.  This year we both did 10.  It's a good trail, and it didn't seem nearly as hilly as it did last year.  It's funny how as you get fitter those hills seem smaller or non-existant.  There was one killer hill just before the end of the loop - three switchbacks to get up it!  I don't care who you are .... that one is tough!

At the end of loop one (you bypass a short turn-off to the finish if you're doing two loops) my time was around 28-29 minutes.  This really surprised me.  I know I can easily run 5K faster than that.  On the first loop I was running with this man and we got chatting a bit (nice guy, I ran with his son last race - ironic??).  So I figured maybe that cost me a bit of time.  I went ahead of him for loop 2 and pushed a bit harder figuring I could pick up a little time.

I knew at this time that I would not meet my goal of finishing in 54-55 minutes, but I was thinking I could get it done in 57 or less.  There were no distance markers along the way so it made it kind of hard to judge your pace (I'm not blessed with a Garmin or anything like that).  But, I followed close to my old guy - hahaa, so I figured I was on target.  There is this older man, and every race he passes me about 3/4 of the way through and then I can't catch him.  So this time when he passed me I focused on him and stayed as close as I could - which I did fairly well.

I was feeling really good.  I felt like I was pushing hard, but I also felt strong and had no aches.  I did feel a teeny bit hungry and thirsty though.  When I came around the corner to the big hill I knew I was almost there and just focused on keeping a good steady pace, even breathing and getting up that hill.

Shortly after I crested the hill I saw my husband standing at the final bend waiting for me.  He had a "look" on his face and told me I was at 57:30 and if I pushed it I could maybe break 58.  My heart sunk!  I immediately got this feeling of failure.  I was so far off my goal time and I couldn't understand it. 

I actually gave up.  I refused to sprint at the end.  Not because I was too tired, not because I was sore - but because I was disappointed.  It's a bad personality fault, what can I say...

I finished in 58:30 - ugh!  I'm still having a hard time processing this.  I'm still wondering if the distance was longer than 10K.  That's not a bad time for a 10K, but I know I can run it faster than that - even with hills and terrain and all.  Last year my husband ran it in 57:30 and I really wanted to beat that time.  I had set a goal that I was sure was achievable and being so far off it left me just shaking my head.

So now I wait until the next 10K (Feb 22nd) where typically people seem to run it 5-10% faster than this race.  This would put me finishing it around 54-56 minutes, which is where I'd expect to be.

Now ... so I'm not all doom and gloom ... here's the positives.  Last year I did the 5K option and finished in 32:46, which I was disappointed in too as I was running 5K in under 29 minutes at that point (this also leads me to believe this course is longer than described).  If I take that time and double it, my 10K time would have been at least 65:30.  So that means I improved by 7 minutes, or 12% - and that I'm impressed with.

My husband finished in 52:15 yesterday, this also means he improved by 10% (5+ minutes) from last year.  I think we've both done well.

I'm going to take a few days off of running as I am a bit sore today.  But I'm going to ramp up the weights this week.  However, it's only 2 weeks until our next race so I can't let it completely slide.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Who's The Sexy Chick

Thanks everyone for all your sweet comments.  I too hope this injury heals quickly.  It's better today and I'm going to stay off the running the next couple days at least.  I think it must be from over pronation as the bit that I have is more pronounced on the left foot.  Most of the time it's fine, but I find it gets more aggravated with extra miles, harder surface, or faster pace.  Hopefully it will be a simple fix.

So last night instead of a run I hit the gym and did a wicked weights/strength workout.  60 minutes of upper body and abs.  It always amazes me when I get all sweaty just from weights because it doesn't equate in my brain to the same as cardio.

You know how I felt last night doing weights????  You know this song:

I LOVE this song.  I can't help but dance when it comes on (drives my teens nuts!). 

Well, last night it came on while I was doing weights and the dialogue went like this:

Note:  These are MY lyrics, not THE lyrics
this is Heidi's world, I can do whatever I want :)

"Dayum, who's the sexy chick?"
"ME, I'm the SEXY CHICK!"
"Dayum, you's a sexy chick?"

"Dayum, who's the sexy chick?"
"ME, I'm the SEXY CHICK!"
"Dayum, you's a sexy chick?"

This is how getting strong and toned makes me feel.  I need to remember this!  I feel strong!  I feel fit!  I feel healthy!  I feel ... invincible!!

I'm also VERY excited today because tomorrow my sister and my niece are coming into town for the day.  The live quite a ways from me so I don't see them often.  My niece is a competitive gymnast and has a meet down here - so YAY!  We're going to start the day off with a few hours of shopping before she competes.  This is her first year doing routines and I can't wait to see them.  I was a gymnast when I was younger, though not nearly as advanced as her.  But ... at 37 I can still do a backhandspring and a back tuck on the fast track (a long somewhat bouncy mat, but not nearly as a bouncy as a trampoline).

I probably won't get on here tomorrow so I hope everyone has a wicked weekend!!!!  I'll be back to report on my race (good or bad). 

Take care all!!

Thursday, January 21, 2010


I have an owie and it's making me very, very sad.  Sometimes when I run too much, too fast, too far, or too hard I get a pain in my left foot.  If I don't rest it and push hard it then travels up the inside of my lower leg.  And right now I'm there!

It started to nag me a couple days ago after my long run, but everything else on my body felt so good so I pushed on.  I actually think running too fast/hard on the treadmill the other day is what did it in.  I really do hate running on the treadmill.

Last night I planned to just do a nice easy jog around the track while my son was at soccer.  But my foot had been bugging me all day, so when I got there I just walked with a friend.  I did run a couple of laps lightly, but it hurt, so I stopped.

I have a race this Sunday.  I don't want to rest!  Heck, I don't ever want to rest.  I'm very sad.

I'm going to stay off the running until Sunday and I'm going to do my race regardless.  If it still hurts next week I'll rest more and maybe even get into the Sports Physio place.  I want to put more focus on strength training starting next week anyway.

Whenever I've had my gait assessed I've been told that I'm best in a neutral shoe (which I have) but that I'm borderline on needing some stability.  Especially on my left foot - which is the problem one.  I plan on doing lots of miles this year so I'll have to bite the bullet and get on this.

My arm is also bugging me (too much bookkeeping lately - probably pre carpal tunnel) and my hubby has a few owies too.  Last night we got into bed and passed the muscle rub back and forth a few times.  He said we better hurry up and become Grandparents because we're getting old quick - hahhaa.  Give me a few years please, like at least 5-7 or so.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I'm Giving Up!

I'm feeling like a bit of a failure. :(  I've been trying to follow this Clean Eating Diet for almost 2 weeks now and have come to the conclusion that it's not for me.  Two weeks isn't long and maybe I'm a failure for giving up already, but it just doesn't feel right.  I still very much agree with the principles of this plan (eating frequently, eating fresh, unprocessed foods, eating protein with meals, but I think I have to scrap it.

I'm feeling way too constricted with what I'm supposed to eat and what I'm not supposed to eat.  I was getting to the point where I was getting ZERO enjoyment out of eating and there was a day when I wanted to throw out all my food because the thought of eating it was making me gag.  Plus, I found myself constantly thinking of foods not on my plan, unhealthy foods - which is strange because normally I eat pretty well.  I ended up reaching often for things that normally I'd rarely have.  And when I did eat outside of my plan I had this feeling of guilt.  Personally I don't think you should feel guilty for eating something, even if it is horribly unhealthy. 

As I mentioned before, in the first few days I had horrible bloat, which mostly went away - but not completely.  I had a couple days of high energy, but I noticed that I also had periods of extreme tiredness.  Sometimes this would come on suddenly and hit me like a freight train - other times I could barely pull myself out of bed.  Though generally my energy would pick up later in the day.

I think the real kicker is that 2 weeks in my weight is still up a little and I'm still feeling bloated.  I think the time has come to kick this one out the door.

So I'm going back to what has worked in the past - counting calories with a focus on eating healthy, clean foods.  I had gotten bored with recording every bite, but it does work.

Wouldn't this be wicked? 

Also, I have my next race (10K) coming up this weekend.  As soon as that is over I'm going to dedicate more time to weight training.  I'm going to have lots of races throughout the year and while I want to do well at them, if I really want to change the look of my body I know that weights is where it's at.  I'm just often worried that I'll be sore from a weights workout before a long run (you'd be amazed how hard it is to run with sore biceps).  But what I really need is to work those muscles more often so I don't get as sore.  Make it part of my routine again.

Last night I did 40 minutes of weights (full body workout) and then 2 fairly fast miles on the treadmill.  Tonight I'm going to dedicate to some speed intervals on the track.  The workouts are always the easy part for me.

I leave you with a very important lesson ....

Monday, January 18, 2010

Goal Check

It's been weeks, probably more like 2 months, since I last ran with my running friends.  Some of them had taken some time off around Christmas.  So earlier last week I received an e-mail planning to get together again. 

I was fully expecting to be a bit sore after my long run on Saturday, and was pleasantly surprised to see that I was just fine.  No aches, no painds, no tiredness.

Plus, as an added bonus, the weather Gods shone upon us!  I tell ya, it POURED during the night.  I laid awake listening to it pelt against my bedroom window.  I almost talked myself out of going on the run since I'd already done my long run for the week.  But then I didn't want the girls to think I'd deserted them.

Somehow shortly before I headed out the door the clouds parted and our entire run was sunny and beautiful.  Must have been meant to be.

We're all at VERY different stages of running.  I ended up running with a lady who is pretty similar to me, but she hasn't been doing much mileage lately.  It ended up being good for me because after my long run I wanted a nice, slow, easy run that wasn't too long.  I figured we'd do about 5-6K, but we were having a nice chat and the weather was beautiful so we ended up doing about 9K.  I love those kind of runs.


I don't think I posted about this yet, but at the beginning of the year I sort of set myself a mileage goal.  I think I didn't post about it because to be honest I don't really know what I should set as a goal.  I've never tracked it before.

This could be adjusted, but at the moment I'm aiming for 750 miles (1200 Km) for the year.  I set monthly goals so I could make sure that I stayed on track throughout the year and didn't have to run 15 miles a day in December to reach my goal - haha.

My goal for January is 55 miles (88.5Km).  As of today I've already done 50.5 miles (81.3Km).

This makes me VERY happy!

I thought I'd have a harder time getting the mileage in this month, but it just keeps adding up.

Another goal I have set for this year (2010 Goals) is to do 100 Days of Strength Training - about 2 days/week.  Ideally I'd love to do 3-4 days/week, but I know this isn't always realistic so I set my goals to be achievable, then adjust if necessary.

So far this month I'm on track, but just! I need to squeeze this in a little more often.


Today my plans got blown to bits.  I should have prepared myself yesterday.  But instead I chose to watch a movie with the family (The Proposal is the cutest movie!) and my plan was to get up a bit early this morning to pack my lunch.

Shortly after getting up my husband informs me that an appraiser is coming by the house in the next couple of hours.  Normally this would be no big deal but I'm currently in the middle of a major disaster.  I've got my bookkeeping files spread all over the office.  And since I had to pull out all my bookkeeping, I also decided to reorganize the office (aka years and years of junk stuffed into cupboards).  Plus, we recently ripped out what is supposed to be the ensuite to our bedroom, but we've been using it as a storage cupboard forever.  So all the contents from that were spread throughout my bedroom and dining room.  And, because I have to organize all that stuff into the basement now, then I had all the Christmas decorations spread out over my gym floor so it too could be organized.

All this to be done in the 1/2 hour I had to get ready for work.  And yes, he got a tongue lashing from me for not giving me more warning.  I ended up getting the major stuff tidied up (don't ask me how??) but I was left with not a moment to prepare food.

Instead I opted for a Subway Chicken Salad, a massive apple from the grocery store, and a handful of hazelnuts (they're not on this stage of the diet but I don't care today!).  I'm supposed to have had 3-4 meals by this time of the day, but luckily that salad is massive and is holding me over just fine.

I hate getting derailed, but I think I made OK choices given the circumstances.  I even had to stop at McD's this morning to get a cup of tea.  I can't tell you how strong the urge was to get a greasy hashbrown to go with it.  I had to talk myself out of it - yes, outloud!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

One Foot After The Other

Ahhhh to be a teen again.  My son will have cereal 2-3 bowls at a time.  The other day all the bowls were in the dishwasher so I pulled out a salad bowl and told him to just use that and get it over with.

We were both laughing so hard taking these.
he's showing me the love here

Last night was a fail on the clean eating diet.  I kind of felt it coming on in the afternoon, I got the munchies.  Plus I was organizing the office (which I really didn't want to do), so was easily allowing myself to be distracted from the job.  It started with one Nilla Cookie, then a little package of Quaker Crispy Delights, then a half shot of Hazelnut Kahlua (barely a taste) ... up to that point it wasn't too bad.  But then we had friends over and while playing cards the snacks came out and I had about 10 nacho chips (ok still not so bad), but WAYYY too much Spinach Dip on them.  I was kind of disappointed that I let myself stray so easily, but maybe it wasn't that bad.

I even convinced myself that I was "carbo-loading" for the long run I had planned for today.  Yeah ... NOT!

This morning I let myself have a lazy, lazy morning and I layed in bed until almost 9:00.  Then had some breakfast and puttered around on the computer for a bit and headed out for my long run around 10:30.  It was a gorgeous sunny day out today and no way was I wasting that.

I headed out on this run with just the simple goal of running the whole thing at a nice, steady, easy pace.  I'm too competitive with myself and always clock watching.  I did bring a watch, but only for general interest.  I wanted to see how long it would take me to run the distance at a casual pace, without pushing.

At 5K I was about 28 minutes - which was about where I expected to be.  At 10Km I was at 59 minutes (there were two long, steep hills in this section) and again, this is where I expected to be.  I was actually feeling really good that my easy, casual pace had me finishing 10K (with hills) in 59 minutes when just a year ago that was my race pace for that distance. 

At this point I was SO tempted to pick it up a bit and see if I could finish the last section at a faster pace and pick up a few minutes.  But I held myself back because I wanted this whole thing to not be about time.

At 15K I looked at my watch and it said 1:25.  I was like ... WHAT THE _____???  I was expecting to be at about 1:30 or more at this point.  How on earth did I pick up time?  I was trying not to.

In the end, today I ran 16.33 Km (aka 10.15 miles) in 1:32 and 10 seconds.  And it was EASY!  I could have sang the whole way.

Afterwards I felt completely pain free and not winded at all.  I believe at that pace I could easily have continued on to finish a half marathon distance.  And if I did, my finish time would be under 2 hours - without any extra effort.  WHAT?  My goal is to be around 2 hrs, but really I was expecting 2:05 - 2:10.  And the route I took had 4 good hills on it.

After that I had a quick shower and took my son out to his soccer game, where I sat and watched for a good two hours.  And now ... my legs don't hurt at all.  I'm sure I'll feel it a bit by tomorrow morning, but I don't think it will be all that bad.

The only thing I did notice was about 3/4 through this run I was HUNGRY!  I had had a slightly lighter breakfast before, but I had no hunger this morning.  I don't remember ever feeling hungry during a run.  When I came home I right away made myself a protein shake with 3 scoops of protein powder.  Not really per the clean eating diet, but I knew it was what my body needed - plus I didn't have alot of time to cook anything.  I really need to do some experimenting with on the run supplements.  I've tried the Gu/Gel type thing once - though not on a run - and I didn't care for it.

Any suggestions??

Friday, January 15, 2010

Beautiful Blogger Award

Yesterday I was deeply touched to receive a Beautiful Blogger Award from Alicia at Alicia Runs. In order to accept this prestigious award I must give you guys 7 random facts about me and then award 7 others.

I just recently came across Alicia's blog and I can tell you that she is very quickly becoming one of my favourite bloggers.  This lady has just finished her first marathon, with her super cool MMA hubby (I'm a pretty big UFC fan).  Her blog is relatively new, but I'm really liking it so far.  Check it out..  Oh, and she has another blog of cakes she's created and they are AMAZING!  One talented lady.

Now, on to my 7 random facts:
  1. I secretly wonder how many pancakes I could eat in one sitting.  Pancakes are a food that never seem to fill me up.  There is a restaurant that has a promotion on right now for all you can eat pancakes and a little part of my brain is tempted.
  2. I was #1 gymnast (at whatever level I was in) at my school district throughout high school.  I wish I'd started younger and been able to advance further.
  3. My first car was a Hyundai Pony with really bad tires.  I did alot of unexpected donuts when I had that car.
  4. I worked past my due date with both my pregnancies.  Left work on the Friday and both kids were born the following Tuesday.
  5. When I took my driving test I was one point away from failing it.  They said they could have failed me just for being that close, but they figured I was pretty nervous.
  6. I was in Pony Club as a kid and loved it.  Years ago I started showing again but discovered it's alot of work and alot of money.  I'm much happier transferring my passion to running and exercising instead.  Plus the fitness/health community is a heck of alot friendlier than the horse community (they're nuts! and snobby)
  7. I'm keeping a secret from alot of people right now (family and some real life friends excluded) because I'm terrified that the plans won't pan out and I'll be super disappointed. 
 The 7 bloggers I'm passing this award along to:
  • Syl @ Live Smile Run - the most beautiful, warm hearted, determined blogger ever!
  • Tamara @ One Last Kick at The Cat - One smart, fun lady ... and an awesome Mom too. 
  • Susan @ All Things in Moderation - I've learned so much from this lady and am so happy I found her blog
  • Marcelle @ South African ... The hottest grandma lady around.  Smokin!  And she takes wicked pictures too.
  • Missy @ The Ups and Downs ... So sweet, I just wanna hug her.
  • Jen @ Prior Fat Girl - It doesn't get any more real than this.  I've been following Jen for quite a while now and her blog is usually one of the first I visit every day.
  • Katie @ One Run At A Time - Just discovered this blog recently.  This lady is awesome.  Looking at her run times I'm insanely jealous and I SOOO want to be her!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Resisting the Teddy Grahams

Yesterday I was 95% on my clean eating plan.  Right after dinner I had a little carb craving and did grab 8 mini teddy grahams (55 calories worth) and when I had the thought to put my hand back in for some more I just told myself "TWO WEEKS"  Two weeks on this restricted plan, then I can expand it a bit and will have changed my eating habits too.  These little bad habits of reaching into the cookies or having a bite of this and that are what is holding me back from achieving the body I really want.

Sure enough, I felt absolutely satisfied for the rest of the night.  You really do have to wait that little bit after a meal for the satisfaction button to kick in.

I woke up yesterday so incredibly sluggish, then by afternoon I was literally bouncing in my office chair.  Maybe it's the cleaner eating ... maybe it was all the inspiring blog entries I was reading - who knows!

So when I got home from work the first thing I did was hit the treadmill!  I only had a short time before we had to eat and go out to the kids sports, so I decided the best use of my time was to run.

And run I did!  I did 30 min of HIIT (2 min at 6 mph, 1 min of 9mph - some at 10 mph - repeat).  I tell ya ... that's a lot harder than just running the same speed for 30 minutes.  Overall I can run a faster steady pace, but I think those quick spurts are hugely beneficial to improving running speed, endurance, and a big bonus for weight loss.

I was a sweaty mess afterwards!

Got another clean menu going on today ....

6:30am - Wake-up - 2 c. water
7:30 am - Breakfast - 1/2 c. oatmeal, 2 tblspn ground flax seed, 1/4 c. blueberries, 3 egg whites, 2 c. water
10:30 - Mid-Morning Meal - 3 oz. Shrimp, tomato/cucumber salad, 2 c. green tea, 2 c. water
2:00 - Lunch - 4 oz. grilled chicken, 1/2 plain sweet potato, 1 pear, 2 c. green tea, 2 c. water
5:00 - Afternoon Meal - 2 egg whites, 1 whole egg, celery, 2c. water
6:30 - Dinner - 4 oz. tilapia, 1/2 plain sweet potato, broccoli, roasted tomatoes 2 c. water, 2c. peppermint tea

I increased my lunch protein today and moved the sweet potato from the mid morning meal to lunch.  I found that for my mid-morning meal I'm not very hungry so I can have a little less then, but by afternoon meal I'm quite hungry.  This should make my lunch meal a bit more substantial with a little more staying power.  For today it worked.

Tonight I'm gonna hit that treadmill again and maybe do a lower body weights session.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Clean Eating

Tamara had a post today where she has gotten to the point of equating food with fuel.  I remember clearly getting to that point and it was a lightbulb moment.  It was that moment that I wanted more out of my body than to just be thinner, or even to just be fitter.  I wanted to be the best I could be.

Now, of course I still struggle with that because 37 years of old habits takes a little time to unravel .  Many times, and I've mentioned it on here too, I have tried different things to lead me to fuel my body better.  Often it was just the generalization of "eat more protein", "eat less sugar", "eat less junk".  While those are great guidelines ... they weren't specific enough for me to stick to and I haven't completely changed my habits as much as I want to.

On Jan 2nd I picked up this month's issue of Oxygen Magazine.  I've read it before in the past, but never with really in depth interest.  For whatever reason, this time some of the stuff in there really hit me.  Time and time again I look to the bodies of fitness competitors and I want "some" of that.  I don't want to be that extreme, I just want to look how they do in their off season.  I know a few women who do this and I like that look.  I LOVE muscle!! 

And as more time goes by, I am turning away from processed foods, additives, reducing sugar, reducing salt, reducing unnecessary fats.  It dawned on me that for a while now I've been mentally leaning towards "Clean Eating".

So last week I went out and bought a copy of Tosca Reno's Eat Clean Diet (thanks Mom - using up my Xmas money!)... and I've been reading and re-reading it since.  I don't agree with everything she says in there, but this is something I really want to give a true go at.

I've been following her "Cooler 1" plan for 5 days now ... and it's been tough at times.  I've been far from successful, but every day is getting better and organization is making things much better.  The first day I did fine until the evening when I wasn't prepared for dinner, ate a few pieces of chocolate, then my MIL put out a bag of shit Party Mix while we played cards and I think I ate half the bag.  Then the other day I came home from work, without dinner planned, and found my way into a bag of peanuts and had two whopping handfuls.  Even last night, I came home and prepared the family's dinner (nachos) and grabbed a couple chips and a spoonful of taco meat before I at my own dinner. 

Some would call that a fail.  Personally I learned something from these experiences.  Today ... I have celery sticks and boiled egg whites waiting for me at home.  If I'm tempted to grab something, I'll grab that.  My dinner is already prepped and ready to cook.

Last night I spent some time and boiled eggs, chopped veggies, defrosted shrimp, grilled chicken, ground flaxseed.  I'm all set for the next couple of days.

Basically the plan is to eat every 2-3 hours, having balanced, portion controlled meals 5-6 times a day.  Limit salt, no added sugar.  HERE and HERE are some reviews online that gives a better breakdown of the plan.

This is a sample day that I've set out for Cooler 1:

6:00am - Wake-up - 2 c. water
7:30 am - Breakfast - 1/2 c. oatmeal, 2 tblspn ground flax seed, 1/4 c. blueberries, 3 egg whites, 2 c. green tea, 2 c. water
10:30 - Mid-Morning Meal - 2 oz. grilled chicken, 1/2 plain sweet potato, 2 c. water
1:30 - Lunch - 3 oz. Shrimp, steamed broccoli & carrots, 1 apple, 2 c. water
4:00 - Afternoon Meal - 3 egg whites, celery, 2c. green tea
6:30 - Dinner - 4 oz. grilled chicken, 1/2 plain sweet potato, tomato/cucumber salad, 2 c. water, 2c. peppermint tea

I can increase the quantities as needed, but so far this has been OK.  The timing thing is what I'm struggling with, but it gets better every day.  At first I wasn't even remotely hungry around the suggested meal times, but now I can feel my body getting ready for that next meal.  It's the whole idea of smaller meals more often to keep the metabolism pumping.  It's a theory that I've believed in for some time, but not always put into practice.  My boss has already commented about how much (aka how often) I'm eating, but I don't care.

The first few days, I have to admit, I really questioned this plan.  I put on about 5 lbs almost immediately and was horribly bloated.  The other day my workout top was cutting into my arms and I almost passed out when I looked in my gym mirror and saw this puffy pillsbury dough boy.  Even my husband noted that stomach looked huge the other evening (like 5 months pregnant huge).  But today it seems to be coming down and I'm feeling "bouncy" today.  I've done some looking around online and it seems this is quite common while your body adjusts and I need to be patient.

I've tried plans along this line before, but when I've had the weight gain/bloat problem I got scared and quit.  This time though I'm going to push through.  I figure it's worth the risk.  And I really do want to eat more of these cleaner foods anyway.

Keep tuned to see the results .......

Monday, January 11, 2010

My Christmas Present - to me...

I'm slowly getting back to that healthy lifestyle that I love.  I'm finding it's one thing to say I'm getting back on track and completely another to actually commit to it.  But ... you all know my motto ... I ain't ever giving up!

This past week saw me getting back into a more regular running schedule.  I ran 4 times for a total of 29.5 Kms/18.3 Miles.  My goal this month is to run 55 miles/88.5 Kms.

Yesterday it was fairly nice out, nippy but not raining, and I just decided to grab the dog and run.  No watch, no plans, just run.  That is so freeing.

I had initially thought I'd do a route that was about 9.5 Km, but then things just felt right and I decided to tack on another little route which brought it up to 14.5Km.  It felt AWESOME, but it's been a while since I've run over 10K, so I was feeling it last night.  So was Tia! (this is an older picture, but this is how she spent the rest of the day pretty much)

Something VERY exciting happened for me just before Christmas.  I got back something I've been without (off and on) for many years.


Back story ....

I got married in 1992 when I was 19, and teeny.  As the years went by, I had babies, I got lazy, and I gained weight.  My rings got tighter and tighter.  That should have been a sign, right?? 

I battled my weight, mostly unsuccessfully for years.  I remember one method I chose was to only eat bread/starchy carbs.  I figured since I like them so much I'd just eliminate the other stuff and that would lower my overall calories.  WOW, I can't believe I just admitted to that.  By 1999 I was already a well seasoned dieter.  I don't think I ever lost more than 5 lbs per stint and I always found a little more afterwards.

Eventually I gave up on weight loss and had my wedding rings made bigger. :(  That was a sad day, but it still didn't inspire me to lose weight.

In early 2001 I got my act in gear and joined Weight Watchers for the first time.  My starting weight was 160.6 and I was shocked that I weighed that much.  I had never weighed that much.  I set my goal weight at 135.  I was a golden Weight Watcher.  I got to goal in 4 months and shortly thereafter I lost another 5-6 pounds. 

Along the way my rings were too big and I took them off.  I was going to get my rings made smaller again but I really wanted to get to 125.  I told myself I'd have them made smaller when I got there.

Well ... I never got there!  I think the lowest I got was 128.something.  A year later, fall 2002, I was up around 140.  In 2003 I was 155, in 2005 I was in the 160s (over my original start weight) .  And it didn't stop!

I went back to WW's time and time and time again.  Losing a couple pounds here and there but never being able to stick to it.  The good news (I guess) was that my rings fit again, but putting them back on made me feel ashamed. 

Then came the day where they started to get tight again.  There was no way in hell I was getting them made bigger again.  I wouldn't say that was the thing that got me committed for life, but it certainly was part of it.  September 28, 2007 I hit an all time high (or all time low) of 174.6 and I finally got serious.

It took a little while as the weight loss was slower this time.  But eventually those rings were dangerously loose.  This time it was a very happy day when I had to take them off because I knew it would be for the last time.  I told myself then that at 145 I'd have them made smaller. 

So ... just before Christmas I took them in and had them re-sized.  I proudly told the sales clerk my story and it felt so good (she asked, apparently it's unusual to have rings made smaller after years of marriage - 17 1/2 yrs in my case).  I got them back a couple days before Christmas and it was the ultimate present.  I feel so proud to be wearing my rings again.  I feel like I've earned the right to wear them.

They will be my symbol of what I've achieved (thus far) and a reminder of where I've been.  They are proof that I can do anything I set my mind to and that I am capable of anything. 


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Ten Things That Make Me Happy

Tamara passed along "Ten things that make me happy".  What a great thing to reflect on...  
  1. Sunshine
  2. My husband.  I trust him 1000% and couldn't ask for someone to love me more.  I'm always his number 1.  In my eyes he can do or fix anything.
  3. When my kids are actually happy (rare these days with moody teens, but that's gotta turn around one day - right???  Please say yes!)
  4. Running!
  5. Cooking a really good meal and having others enjoy it
  6. Snow (ya that maybe contradicts #1, but it's just so darn peaceful)
  7. Being good at something (whether it's me, my husband or my kids).  I am HIGHLY competitive and I love to win!
  8. Having a tight knit family, that I consider just as much friends as they are family.
  9. Road trips - don't care where .. just wanna go!
  10. Money. OK, I know, that's shallow maybe, but I know that lack of it sure can make you miserable.
 I think I'm supposed to pass this along to 3 more people ... but I can't remember who hasn't or hasn't gotten this already.  So if you wanna do it, then consider it passed along :)

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Back to normal .....

Life is back to "normal".  I'm back to work, the kids are back to school, their sports are back this week.  But I'm also back in training and eating better.

As predicted, that weight workout kicked my butt ... or should I say my arms.  Owie!  Actually I overdid it with one move and I have a little injury on my triceps (right is quite bad, left is bareable).  It makes lifting my tea mug and answering the phone at work rather difficult.  I'm going to let it fully heal and lower my weight a bit on that move for the next round.

Sunday night I ran 5 Km on the treadmill in 26 minutes (7.15 mph).  I started off pretty slow so really had to push hard at the end to make that time.  But that's about the pace I need to be to reach the goal I set for my next race.  Actually, I need to be at a slightly faster pace because those hills will knock it down a bit.  I'm going to train at 7.5mph on my treadmill runs for the next few weeks and if I get a chance I need to do some hill training too.

Monday night I again ran 5Km on the treadmill, but this time in 24:30 (7.6 mph) - wooohooo.  Though I had to stop at about 10 minutes in and go find a hair clip because my bangs were driving me insane.  So I can't really call that a true 5K time.

Today I'm taking a rest day, then lower body weights tomorrow and back to running again on Thursday.  My weight is up a bit from the other day and I'm guessing it has to do with muscle recovery and all that junk.  I'm not worrying about it because I know it'll only go down from here. 

Had a fairly good food day today.  It's REALLY hard when you've been eating junk to get away from it.  It just calls your name.  Today I've had:

Breakfast - 4 eggs whites cooked in 1 tsp olive oil, 2 slices Body Wise bread, 1 T light Peanut Butter
Lunch - 2 slices Body Wise bread, 3 slices turkey deli meat, 2 T Sabra Chipotle Hummus, green leaf lettuce and an apple
Afternoon Snack - 1 pkg. Motts Fruitsations
Dinner - Crockpot Chicken with carrots, 1/2 small potato &1/2 garlic bun

Evening Snack - 1/2 c. FF plain yoghurt, 1 banana, drizzle chocolate sauce & 1 T walnuts

About 1500 calories for the day

Over Christmas, Costco had a sale on Sabra Chipotle Hummus.  I got two huge tubs for I think about $6.  And ... lucky me ... no one else in the house likes it.  I think I could live on this stuff alone.  SOOOO good, and a real nice kick to it.  I could eat it straight off a spoon.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Resolution Run

Last year I began doing some races, and quickly decided I loved it.  The more I do it, the more I love it.  I began last year with a trail running series.  There's a total of 4 races and I did 2 of them, got sidelined by an injury on the last one.

This year however my husband and I decided to sign up for all 4 races in the series in advance.  It cost less for 4 races in advance than it would have for 3 races if we signed up on an individual basis.

The first race was January 1st ... an 8K trail run .... they call it the Resolution Run.

We've never been big partiers on New Years Eve, but we do usually hang out with friends, eat too much food, maybe have a few drinks and stay out late.  So the prospect of getting up early to do an 8K run on New Years Day was a little daunting, but we decided to do it anyway. 

However, we still went out to a friends house, ate too much food, stayed out until 2AM.  My husband had 3 or 4 beers, but I wasn't into it and just had Diet Pepsi & a tea (such a party girl - hahha).  We had to get up at 8AM to get to the run on time.  So the night out, coupled with virtually no sleep the night before ... I was beat! 

The race started at 10AM and we got there about 20 minutes early to sign in and do a warm-up run.  Boy did we need it too, we had that really cold, miserable, damp weather that is typical here on the coast.  Your bones freeze!

It was a nice course, almost no hills, and nice terrain.  Though lots of tree roots and rocks along the route, plus a couple logs to jump along the way.  There was about 200 people running and the beginning of the race was crazy.  You could barely move through the narrow trails.  It took about 4-5 minutes to break through the crowd and be able to set a reasonable pace and even once in a while when the trail narrowed we got stuck behind other runners waiting for an opening. 

I'm not super pleased with my time, but I am happy.  In November we did a really rough conditions, extremely hilly 7.7 km race and I finished in 43:11.  This 8K, easy terrain race took me 43:43.  Yeah, slightly longer, but the difference in terrain should have meant a better time.  But given that I really haven't run in the last month it's pretty good.  I ran the 2nd half faster than the first, which is something I aim to do in races.  Once we broke out of the initial pack very few women passed me, though a fair amount of men did.  Actually, for the first 4-5 Km no women passed me, but I guess their stamina was better than mine in the second half.  Last February I did my first 8K race and it took me 49:54 to finish it ... so yeah, 6 minutes improvement is pretty good I guess.

My husband finished in 39:39 and he's feeling pretty disappointed.  His last race (the 7.7Km) he did in 37:10, so he expected better.  Last year 8K took him 42:40ish.  But I still think that's a rocking time and I can't wait until I can run it that fast.  It's kind of neat that a year later I'm now running the times he ran last year.  He has about 10" on me, all in the legs, so it makes me feel really good when I can run as fast as he has.

Our next race is a 10Km, fairly hilly route, on January 24th.  My goal for that is to do it in 54-55 minutes.  I'm giving myself a cushion because I recall some pretty big hills on that route.  I've got work to do in the next 3 weeks to get back to my faster pace and to get in better condition.

This last race really reminded me that I need to get back into regular training.  The actual run wasn't too hard, but at the end I was completely out of gas.  I was just a breath away from loosing my lunch after finishing the race.  The volunteer at the end was removing the tag off of my bib and I thought I'd lose it right there.  Not a good feeling!

It feels good to be back into training again, and eating cleaner.  My body likes me!  This race was exactly what I needed to kick the new year off just right.  Hopefully the event posts the results today so I can see how I did in comparison to the others.


Saturday, January 2, 2010

2010 Goals

Last year I posted a list of goals I wanted to achieve for 2009.  And I did pretty good.  There was really only one I didn't accomplish and if I were honest, I didn't actually think I would when I posted it.  Here's how I did:
  • 20 consecutive big girl push-ups - Could do this, so goal accomplished, but currently need to work back up to it again.  Use it or lose it!
  • run 10km under 1 hour - Did it!  My best "recorded" time was 58:56 in April.  By year end I believe my 10Km time was proably somewhere around 55-56 minutes (maybe less), but I didn't officially time it ever.  My best 5K time was 24:53.
  • run the entire Ft to Ft non stop (about 14 km) - Did this and blew it out of the water with the longest run I did being about 22 Km (aka 13.6 miles)
  • climb the Grouse Grind in 50 minutes or less - Technically I didn't actually beat this goal.  I gave this one 2 attempts (it's not something I can do frequently) and after my first try I decided that my goal was extremely lofty.  My first attempt I did it in 58:42, but my second attempt was 50 minutes and 40 seconds so close darn enough to call it goal met!  I'm ecstatic with this achievement!
  • eat fish at least once a week - Yeah OK, this is the one that I didn't even come close too.  I can't even say that I increase my consumption much at all, maybe a teensy bit.  I guess it's a baby step.
  • REACH MY GOAL WEIGHT! - Technically I did get under 145 lbs, though fleeting.  So yes, goal met, but now I need to get under there and STAY under there!

I'm very, VERY happy with what I achieved in 2009.  Even taking my Christmas season gain into account I lost about 7 lbs over the year.  The previous year I lost 9 lbs and before that about 13 lbs.  It all adds up.  NEVER GIVE UP!

So .... without further adieu, I bring you my ........

2010 GOALS

  • Run my next 10Km race (January 24th) in under 54-55 minutes.  Last year I did the 5K version of this race (1 lap instead of 2) and it took me 32:46, so I'm expecting a big improvement.
  • Run a 10Km race under 52 minutes, adjust to less if necessary
  • Run at least one Half Marathon (I'd love to do this around 2 hrs)
  • Buy a new bikini (my sister & Mom will laugh over this one) and not worry about belly spillage
  • Do strength training at least 100 days this year.  That equals about 2 days per week. I look, and feel, so much better when my body is strong!
  • Increase fish & salad consumption.  Not setting any numbers here, but I'm starting from very low so and increase will be a positive one.
  • Catch up and keep up on my bookkeeping so I don't get overstressed about it!
That's about it for now.  I'm not setting a weight goal.  I already know where I want to be and I know that by keeping focused on the goals I've set out for myself, the weight & measurements will follow.


Today I picked up the January issue of Oxygen Magazine.  The last few years I stopped buying magazines to save money.  It had become a $50/month habit.  But I figured if I pick just one a month and actually use it then it's a good investment.

Susan at All Things in Moderation often mentions using the workouts from this magazine and I thought that sounded like a good idea.

Tonight I did the Upper Body session of their Best Body Ever plan.  When I first looked at it, it didn't seem like much of a workout.  But it's thorough!  I'm sure I'm going to feel it in the morning.

Tomorrow I will tell you what I did on New Years Day!!!!


Friday, January 1, 2010


Happy New Year to all my blogging buddies.  Wishing you all the best for 2010!  You guys have been a big part of my life for this past year and I look forward to more of that this year.

I have been completely MIA from blogland for quite some time now.  December ended up being an insanely hectic month for me.  I actually feel like I've been MIA from life for the past month and it's all a bit of a blur.

I finally got my bookkeeping nightmare for our business in order.  I had a deadline to file the GST (taxes) by December 31st and yesterday we drove out to the tax office to drop it off.  From Boxing Day on I spent almost the entire day until late at night everyday to get this done.  This meant no exercising, no real cooking and a lot of mindless snacking.

Earlier in the month (while avoiding facing my bookkeeping nightmare) I went into bakers overload.  This is just a minor portion of what I ended up cooking (and eating).  I made:
  • 8 dozen decorated gingerbread cookies
  • 14 dozen peanut butter cookies
  • 6 dozen almond crescents
  • 8 dozen mexican wedding cake cookies
  • 1 - 8x13 tray of the MOST DELICIOUS cheesecake cookie squares
  • 2 - 4 x 7 trays of sickenly sweet peanut butter fudge
  • 1 cookie sheet of almond roca
I don't even want to think about how much of that I ate all by myself.  I know one day I had a "snack" or SIX peanut butter cookies!

Susan posted the other day about waking up in the middle of the night to have Tums and I can totally relate.  That's such a sick feeling to know that you've over eaten, and mostly with unhealthy foods, so much that it wakes you up at night.  Gross!

We also went to a couple of Christmas parties.  I bought this shirt a few weeks ago, a size 6 (though I think a large size 6), and I love the color.  This is my father-in-law, me & my husband.  Unfortunately since that picture was taken I've been eating like crazy and now have a little tire around my waist that isn't very appealing in that shirt.

Then an improtu trip up to the Okanagan that, while wonderful to get away and see family up there, really cut into my time that I needed to be doing other things.

Saw a little wildlife....

and my little girl got to visit with her cousins....

I created this crazy time crunch for myself and got majorly stressed out!  I haven't been sleeping much at all.

Throughout the month of December I did very, very little exercising and really didn't pay any attention to my diet at all.  At the end of November I was sitting at around 145 - 145.6 (that 143.6 was a fleeting moment unfortunately).  Right now I can be anywhere between 147 and 149, though mostly under 148.  I guess considering all that has gone on my gain isn't too bad, but I feel gross.  I'm very soft compared to where I was.  And I know I've lost some fitness.

I can probably count on one hand how many times I ran in December, and most of them were 5K or less and a very slow pace.

On December 30th at 11 PM I finished my bookkeeping, went to bed with the intention of forgetting about it all for a few days ... and didn't sleep all night. Then went out and about all the next day, then celebrated New Years Eve with friends (no alcohol though so that was good) and stayed out until 2 AM. Had to get up at 8 AM this morning. So at the moment I'm running on less than 8 hrs sleep in the last 48 hours. Way too little for me!

But January 1st marks a new start! 

And that .... I shall blog about tomorrow :)

Goodnight all.........