Tuesday, January 14, 2014

New Year...Same Resolution...Take 3

I know what you're thinking by now...how is this year different?

Every year, I list weight loss at the top of my list of new year's resolutions.  I never did anything about it last year...I was in the midst of moving.  In stead, I find myself facing 2014 at my heaviest I've ever been.  The numbers last year inched up as did my waist...but I still ended the year on a high note.  I have a loving relationship with an awesome man who loves me the way that I am.

Confession: I used to have a bit of fear when it came to losing weight.  The "what if" game can be tough on someone who has never known "skinny".  I spent many years blaming lost relationships, being unpopular, not getting into a certain sorority, etc on being a little overweight.  But this year, I realize that the weight is not the issue.  I don't want to lose weight to be accepted more, to be in a relationship, to be popular.  I am happy with who I am.

I think to those commercials from a few years ago: "What will you gain when you lose" and realize that there's some truth in that.  I want to gain some confidence for sure.  I want to gain strength both internally and externally.  Mostly, I want to show myself that this is possible.  I want to do this for me.  Not for anyone else!

I have bit the bullet and joined Weight Watchers and also bought a Fit Bit to track my steps.  I want to set small goals...5% of my weight by Valentines day being my first!  1 month to 5%.  My plan is as follows:

1. 10,000 steps per day...no excuses
2. Drink 24 ounces of water 30 minutes before each meal (I have a great water bottle that makes me chug)
3. Try 2 new recipes a week (which means that I'll be cooking)
4. Try a new workout every two weeks (though no pressure to go everyday...just try something new)

We'll get to February 14 and then reevaluate from there.  For now: I need to try Yoga again!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

2nd Chance New Years

Okay, unless you have been living under a rock, you realize a few things: I have not been writing and I have been terrified to start again.

When I think about New Years Resolutions, I realize that most people don't follow through. I think the situation is similar to finding out that blind date you have is really St Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford: you put way too much pressure on the first date (or in my case, the first month).

After bunches of conference calls and securing my job in February, I then got a sinus infection/ear infection combo that is just now going away. Oh, and I got lazy and scared to start the blog again, because I would have to admit my defeat. Well, then God took matters into his own hands. The air got warmer and the leaves began to come out again and...well, my sinuses began to drip...but then the Zertec began to protect me and...long story short, I wanted to be outside. I started running again.

I've decided that if there can be a 2nd chance bracket game (because who didn't lose a little dignity when Missouri and Michigan lost first round?) then I can have a 2nd chance at New Years Resolutions!

Last week was rough. I went back to week 3 of C25k, but I was running outside instead of on a treadmill. I actually have a harder time running outside. I don't know how to pace myself. I only know that my perfect pace (6.0) is somewhere between the songs "Sex on Fire" by Kings of Leon and "I Do Not Hook Up" by Kelly Clarkson. But, let's get real, I'm not going to listen to those songs 800 times over while running.

I moved on this week to week 4 again, but I'm having a hard time staying motivated. I did have a rad headband on today (yes, fashion plays a role in my running), but I tend to get discouraged when those who are faster pass me with ease and I see people who aren't breathing like they're dying.

My rad potholder headband was made at Carmel Young Life girls night at my apartment! I'm the coolest kid in town. :)

I think I need to start back up with my other random workouts. I have been frightened to going back to those. But the good news is: no one knows I've been absent from them because I'm going to a new class. So, what should I try tomorrow? Pure Barre opens in about 2 weeks, so I'm excited to try that, but I need something for the now!

I'll leave you with my new favorite running songs:
Smile - Avril Lavingne
Tongue Tied - Grouplove
Stronger (What Doesn't Kill You) - Kelly Clarkson
Sparks Fly - Taylor Swift

Yep, I'm a 13 year old girl.

Happy New New Year!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Who's That Chick? Who's That Chick?

It's been a long week...lots on the plate so I'll give a brief rundown:
Wednesday: Ran
Thursday: Ate
Friday: Ran
Saturday: Zumba (with Cindy)
Sunday: Rested
Monday: Ran
Tuesday: Conference Called (5 total)

Which brings me to today. I woke up this morning and had my first of two conference calls at 9am. After the call (and 2 cups of coffee), I was ready to hit the streets...er, the treadmill. It was FREEZING today! I threw my hair into a ponytail, laced up my sneakers, and threw on my new Nike capris, a t-shirt and a hoodie for the walk to my apartment gym.

I have been running here since the beginning of this crazy adventure. At most, I have had to bear being in a small room with maybe 3 or 5 other people, but usually I have been alone which allows me to set the TV, grab my US Weekly (for motivation) and zone out during my run while keeping up with the Kardashians and the ladies of The View. **Sidenote: last week I went to the gym in the morning and watched the most atrocious attempt to use hand weights...looked like she was trying to do an Indian Rain Dance...but I digress**

I walked the gym, new Us Weekly in hand and was disturbed to find out that there were several men in the gym...and they were wielding paintbrushes. Disturbed, I went to the front office where I was given a trial pass to LA Fitness. I was going to have to put more effort into running before even stepping onto a treadmill. I hopped in my car, and drove the 2 miles to the gym.

When I got to the gym, I was reminded of the movie "Dodgeball: An Underdog Story". In the movie, Ben Stiller plays the owner of "Globo Gym". They are a mega gym with all kinds of amenities. Not only that, their motto was "We're better than you, and we know it". Yeah, it felt a little like that.

I was met by the general manager, Nick, who was a little schmoozy and wanted me to have a full tour of the gym. I didn't feel like I could just tell him that I only wanted to "use the treadmill for 30 minutes, so nope, I'm good", and thus got stuck seeing the racquetball courts, spin cycles, hot tub, daycare (oh yes, there was daycare), locker rooms, etc. It was intimidating! Finally, I got a breath in and was able to say I was in a time crunch. I walked my way up the stairs to the cardio machines and stepped on the treadmill to do my routine. Sadly, I was forced to watch some stock market channel on silent while running, but I did get to listen to some music.

My first 5 minutes were spent in the trance of Rhianna. I listened to "We Found Love" and then followed it with "Who's That Chick"...a song that inspires me to be exactly what I want to be...the girl everyone asks about. Unfortunately for me, I got my wish today, but not in the way I wanted to.

My first 2 minute run came up, and I started to go, only to find that my new Nike capris were probably not the best running attire. Turns out, they're too big. I ignored tugging for as long as possible, hoping that they would settle, but only to realize that my small of my back and beyond were going to be exposed to the entire gym. Globo Gym was GOING to laugh at me. The minutes were going by so slow as every 4 seconds or so required a tug up of the pants, a tug down of the shirt. I tried to mask it, but there's no way to do a tug gracefully. It was evident that I was not the "that chick" that Rhianna speaks of...I was "THAT chick" that no one will befriend. THAT chick.

My run ended and I stepped to the side to devise a plan. I could tie my sweat shirt around my waist? Or maybe pull the capri part up? In the end, I high waisted the capris...and tied the sweatshirt around my waist.

My traumatic moment faded, but I will always remember never to wear those pants to run again.

Tomorrow, I will go back to Globo Gym to try a class. I should take advantage of the free membership!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Hips Don't Lie

Today was Zumba day 4.

I showed up right on time tonight and to a packed room. So many people looking to Zumba their way to the top. My imagination often gets the best of me and tonight, I felt like I was auditioning for a Broadway show...afterall, with the recent surge of musicals based on the music of [fill in name of artist here], it's only a matter of time before a few musicals get made. My favorites I would like to see are as follows:
* Spice World - The Musical
* Mr Jones & Me - A Musical Dedicated to Dreads & the Counting Crows
* Don't Stop Believin' (really, why hasn't this been made already?)

But in the name of Zumba, when I dance, I am auditioning for Shakira's musical. Oh yes, that latin lady knew how to shake it!

So back to the atomosphere tonight. It was a packed room with lots of girls ready to Zumba. Robby got up to the front and started to move and shake, not breaking down the moves, but expecting us to follow along. I was on the left side of the room tonight where there is no mirror in front of me, but one to the side. So for the first few songs, I was the champion of moving & shaking, but then I noticed the mirror to the side of me. Though my head said "Shakira who?" my body was shaking more like that embarrassing relative who thinks the hottest dance move is the hands above the head and move your feet a bit move.

Worse still, the girl in front of me had it. She owned her dance moves. She was snapping and pointing at all the right times. When "Womanizer" came on, she looked like Britt. "Jai Ho", you would have sworn she was a Bollywood princess...dating Slumdog Millionaire. I started to try to incorporate snaps and winks. Nope, too much like I have turrets. So I just started to watch her.

I finally loosened up a bit, though it's safe to say that I likely would not have passed the audition had there been one tonight. But I'll get her on Thursday...I will be moving in my room, learning how to shake these hips. (Is "Shake Your Bon Bon" still relevant? If so, that's what I'll be doing.)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Just Keep Swimming

New week. I'm now on to week two. Things are a little tougher and my mind is already trying to play the "failure" game with me...but I won't give up!

Today's Workout: C25K week 2: 5 minute warm up, 90 seconds running, 90 seconds walking, 90 seconds running, 2 minutes running (for 20 minutes) 5 minute cool down
How I Felt During: Sick. Regretting I didn't go earlier in the day!
Music: "Who's That Chick" by David Guetta feat Rhianna (love it!), "Sweet Lorraine" by Andy Davis, "Stronger" by Kelly Clarkson
How I Felt After: Glad it was over!

So my day today has been really busy. Last week, my schedule was wide open, so it was pretty easy to work my workouts & running into the day, but tonight I had a special date with one of my Young Life girls before Campaigners. What that meant was that my run had to wait until after Young Life. Unfortunately, the lovely dinner of Jason's Deli salad, soup, and (obviously) ice cream had settled on me before I started a little bit more intense running pattern today. And I was a little tired too.

Flashback: let's go back to August of 2004. Senior year. I was ready to start running. Bright eyed and bushy tailed, I threw on my gym clothes and skedaddled my way to the Baylor University rec center. I had all the right accessories: cute shorts, running shoes, and my Discman (yep, this was before I had an iPod).

Baylor's gym was situated in such a way that the cardio machines were on the bottom of a leveled facility. Think of it as being on the bottom stair. There were tv's in the front, then bikes, then treadmills, then elliptical machines and stair masters all on level one. Step up to the middle level and you have all the weight machines. The top step had all the (Pikes?) free weights.

As I walked into the gym that day, I was confident...courageous even. I waited for my treadmill and when one finally opened, I hopped on and began my warm up. Finally, I was ready to run. I pumped up the speed to 6.0 and went for it.

All of a sudden, something happened...a small trip. As I thought to myself "that was close" I suddenly tripped again and BAM! I was going to fall. Terrified, I reacted with an almost cat-like reflex! I grabbed the side of the treadmill and started running my feet as fast as I could underneath me (this treadmill was from the ice ages and did not have side runners to step onto). I tried to gain balance and get up like nothing happened, but there was no recovering from a "Trauma-Rama" moment like this. I had to admit defeat. I pushed stop, and let the treadmill take me to the ground...my Ashlee Simpson CD rolling out for the world to see.

As I sat there, a girl walked up to me and put her hand on my shoulder.

"Are you okay?" She politely asked.

"Yeah" I replied, though my face was so red I'm sure she thought I was dying.

Then she replied with the worst. response. ever. : "Maybe you should slow down"

Yep. Horrible, right? It was the most defeating moment in my entire life...so much so, that I not only gave up treadmills for almost 2 years, I gave up going to the gym for my entire senior year. My bruises being constant reminders that working out doesn't pay.

Why do I tell this story? Despite the fact that this story is absolutely something that should be recorded for everyone on the internet to see, it also is a common theme in my life. I feel like I face many roadblocks that make me just want to "slow down". This weekend, it was the scale.

When I started brainstorming this plan of mine, I decided that weight loss was not going to be the focus of this, but just having fun. My "all or nothing" personality wants to see instant results and they just aren't rational. So this weekend, I saw my scale in my bathroom and felt the need to see if I had lost any weight. I had gained a pound. I felt like I was back on the floor exposed to everyone. But, then I remembered that I am to focus on something different. No one is looking at me and laughing right now. I am enjoying the journey, and that is what is ultimately the most important thing.

So, today's run wasn't my best. I did it. I finished. And eventually, I will finish and I won't hate it. So for now, I'll "just keep swimming" (thanks "Finding Nemo"!)

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Dance Party 2012

I missed writing yesterday, but with good reason. I mixed my run in with baking cupcakes. Snickers cupcakes at that. With caramel buttercream frosting. They were amazing. No, really. This is not a picture of mine, but mine were every bit as beautiful as these made by my sweet friend Elizabeth Ann (www.elizabethannsrecipebox.com):
I was making them for a friend's going away party since he leaves for the Air Force tomorrow. I made 2 dozen (though it wouldn't have been able to serve everyone who came to his party!! So well loved!!) and I put them in cake pans and headed out the door. However, I tried to carry them outside in my 3 tins and of course I dropped them. It was literally one of the saddest things you could ever imagine. I watched in slow motion as they tumbled to the floor. Chocolate, Caramel, Peanutty goodness, lying helpless on the ground to be trampled forever. Not only that, but it was the first time I have ever used a piper to put the frosting on the cupcakes so they were picture perfect! TRAGIC. That's the story of how I counter acted my run yesterday (which did happen) by eating 2 cupcakes without the frosting (if the frosting is damaged...just scrape it off!) (also: there were 7 undamaged cupcakes and they went to the party and were enjoyed.

NOW...on to today:
First and foremost, I came home last night to an apartment of 80 degrees. I think my sequencer is out on my heat so I had to shut it off manually. Long story short, I fell asleep around 4 am. However, my body was wide awake and ready to samba with my friend Clara this morning. Our mission was clear: burn off calories before brunch. And burn we did!

Workout: Zumba with Robby
How I Felt During: energetic. surprisingly! Oh, and sweaty.
Music: The oh so subtle "Bumpy Ride" by Momhambi or something...Jai Ho, DJ Got Us Falling In Love, Party Rock Anthem, um, and others
How I Felt After: Thirsty...and energetic!

I know, it's surprising but I have a lot of energy. I love to dance and I think that Zumba classes feed my inner back up dancer. I'm shocked I haven't been asked to go on the road with Britney, but I'm sure the time is coming.

Showing up this morning with Clara, I realized that although I have only been to this gym 2 times before, I already recognize friendly faces and have things to talk about with people. Revel is a very friendly place! I think Clara thinks I didn't pay attention on the day in elementary school when we were taught not to talk to strangers, and she's probably right.

The work out when I'm not doing toning is awesome. It's just dancing. Pretty basic dance moves, but even when you can't catch on, the goal is just to keep moving! Even if you aren't on point, no one is watching you and moving your feet and arms WILL burn calories. You will feel the burn sooner or later. I wasn't feeling it at first today, but by song 3 I was in it to win it! I counted down the minutes until Clara and I could brunch, and realized how much more fun it is to have a good friend with you in class. We were able to giggle about the dance moves for the rest of the day. And we probably listened to the classy ballad "Bumpy Ride" 4-6 times today in my car as we drove around town doing Heaven Knows What. Great day!

Tomorrow is a rest day...I am one week through with my 52 week challenge. So far, so good :)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Plank...and Other Forms of Torture

Today was a Zumba day, but to switch it all up, I attended Zumba Toning Class. I walked in, confident. After all, I have Zumba'd before and I basically own the cumbia. Just sayin. But they were right, Pride Comes Before the Fall.

Workout: Zumba Toning
How I Felt During: I thought my arms and shoulders were going to die
Music: Lots of Spanish songs, and Mohombi's "Bang You"...classy.
How I Felt After: Glad it was over.

So, I attended Zumba on Tuesday at 7 and when I walked in I saw someone I recognized: Jenny Spencer. Backstory: Jenny and I met at my coworker's wedding. She and her roommate hosted the official after party and I vaguely remember her talking about how she taught Zumba (which should have been obvious by her killer dance moves on the floor). When I went on Tuesday, Jenny was just finishing her Zumba Toning class and I knew this would be my next class.

So today, I showed up for my 6:00 pm class at 6:09 looking like a champ and ready to rock this toning. It was a smaller class...full of a diverse array of health enthusiasts: all shapes, sizes, and ages. As Jenny handed me my "weights" (which are pictured below) I thought, these have no weight at all...but they make noise! I seriously considered picking up a set of 3 or 5 pound weights like the woman next to me.
So these 1.5 pound weights are filled with sand and shake like maracas. At first I was all over it. They felt great and they allow me to feel like I'm drinking margaritas and enticing foreign men, but after a couple of songs with my arms out or up, I began to realize that my shoulders were burning. Yep, Burn. They hurt like Hades and are primarily an evil torture device. Now, to those of you who may scoff: I have attended cross fit classes and I have attended boot camps, but these hurt just like something out of one of those classes. I guess I just wasn't expecting it. It would be like if you met a My Little Pony...and then it stepped on your foot and broke it. Unexpected pain.

To the woman next to me in Zumba Tone class: You go girl. I don't know how you survived with weights of 3-5 pounds. I commend you and the queen should have you knighted!

The steps were a little trickier tonight than they were in the regular Zumba class, but it may have been that I was in a little more pain tonight and thus wasn't paying as much attention to what I was supposed to be doing. It doesn't matter though: a quick glance around the room put me back in my "I'm in this with everyone else" mentality!

At the end of the class, we got out yoga mats and did some ab/core work. I think during the middle ages, they would have done a lot better to just get people into the plank position and force them to hold it. This may be gross to admit, but I literally drip sweat in the plank position. Literally. I may have even given up a little tonight. I took a small break. For you work out neophytes this is the plank:
Important to keep your body in a line. It hurts. Really.

So, between lunges and planks and holding my arms up while holding weights and shaking my bon bon, I think I'm going to sleep well tonight. Tomorrow's run should be interesting. Night!