Monday, November 14, 2016

Today is the day

As of last Thursday, I have four months until I turn 40.  FOUR MONTHS.  I stepped on the scale this morning after quite some time of having not gotten on the scale, and it was a scary wake up call.  I could tell from the way I look and feel that it wasn't going to be a good number.  I mean, it wasn't crazy bad, but it wasn't good.  I had already decided that I needed to come up with a consistent work out plan.  I kept meaning to find one online but never made actually searching for one a priority.  So I've decided to do P90X again.  I had great results with it when I did it a few years ago.  I'm going to add in some swimming workouts at the gym, too, and I think I'll do the yoga class I like at the gym instead of the P90X yoga video.  I need to take my "before" pictures and measurements today, but I'm pretty scared.  My friend Erica suggested not even looking at the pictures until I have some to compare them to after having done the program for awhile.

Of course, as I sit here typing this yearning to be fit and not want to throw up every time I see myself naked, I'm snacking on Chex Mix.  What is wrong with me?!  Partly I just love Chex Mix and partly we're low on groceries until I go to the store tomorrow, so my choices are pretty slim.  I've gotten in a bad habit of being pretty good during the week, but then on the weekends I tend to go nuts eating and drinking.  My husband has been traveling a lot for work, so I feel like our weekends have turned in to extra party time since he's home.  He's feeling the same "ugh" that I am lately, so hopefully we can work together (on the rare occasions he's home) to both get to where we want to be.

I really would love to be super smokin' hot for my 40th birthday.  Wouldn't that just be awesome to be in the best shape of your life for the dreaded birthday?  I know I can have good results with this workout plan.  I do need to make meal planning and healthy food choices a higher priority, but I think the ticking time bomb of knowing I have less than four months will be a good motivator.

My Chex Mix snack is all gone, so I guess that means I should go eat the frog and get these pictures, measurements, fitness test, and first workout out of the way.

Thursday, October 13, 2016


Sometimes the inner fat girl in me really wants to buy a pie or box of Hostess somethings at the grocery store and go home and eat the whole thing by myself in one sitting.  I've yet to give in to this desire, but sometimes I stare really hard at the desserts in the Safeway bakery and think about what it would be like.

Monday, October 3, 2016


Phew...sure is dusty around here after being neglected for so long! ;)  Not that this will be read by anyone other than myself, I mostly just needed to get some thoughts down about my fitness and health.

I'm on the downward slope to turning 40...less than six months to go.  That's so weird to me...40.  I remember when my mom turned 40 (we had a surprise party for her at my grandparents' house, and I almost blew it when I called and asked her to bring some toys for her friend's kids because there wasn't anything for them to play with), and I do not seem as old now as she did then.  I guess technically I have a few months until I'm at that point, but it still doesn't seem feasible that between now and March I'll suddenly feel as old as my mom seemed then.  No offense to my mom.  I was 12 when she turned 40, so of course she seemed old.

I feel like healthwise I'm in this weird rut.  I really hate when I'm lazy and make poor food choices and see and feel my body getting squishy instead of being firm or even just not quite as squishy.  Yet I really just don't feel like I have the motivation or drive to do anything about it.  The best I ever looked in my life and the fittest I ever was, was a few years ago when I'd work out with a group of my friends pretty much every day.  I was spending close to two hours at the gym at least five days a week plus training for various races I'd be doing, and I counted every calorie that went in to my body.  I looked awesome, but it was pretty exhausting.  I don't really want to be at that place again (plus at the time I had at least one kid home with me, so working out for two hours was a nice break.  Now both my kids are in school all day, so spending two hours at the gym means less time I have to myself while they're gone.) because it was a lot of effort, way more than I'm willing to put in right now.  But I also don't want to be squishy and hate how I look when I turn the big 4-0.  How cool would it be if the best I ever looked was when I turned 40?

I don't know.  I need some kind of a plan.  Ideally the plan would be having a personal chef and trainer at my disposal whenever I wanted so I didn't have to come up with healthy meals and cook said healthy meals and then also have someone to motivate me to get my squishy ass to the gym and do something about the squish.  As I sit here typing this, I would normally be getting ready to head out for my Monday morning volleyball.  Realistically it's not a great workout as it's a bunch of moms around my same age playing volleyball in the gym of the local LDS church, but it's fun and something different.  We don't wear booty shorts like they do in the Olympics, there's rarely any diving for the ball, although sometimes there are only three ladies per side so that makes it a decent workout on those days.  Today there weren't enough people, so it was cancelled.  My first thought was, "That's probably better because now I can go to the gym and get a better workout in."  Now I'm kind of tempted to go back to bed for awhile.  I have to take my oldest to the dentist in the middle of the day, so I need to leave by 11:30 to get him on time.  I have three hours from now until then.  The gym is five minutes from my house.  I'm already dressed to go, I just need to actually get my squishy butt there.  Bed sounds a lot better.

See?  What's wrong with me?  I completely overindulged this past week, and I can tell by looking in the mirror.  I know I need to go to the gym (also partly because my husband and I are starting a bet to help us be more motivated to get to the gym and make healthier choices), but the physical act of going seems so meh.  I couldn't decide what to wear to church yesterday and thought about jeans because it was rainy and kind of cold, but I was scared to try and put on any of my jeans.  That's not cool.

I also need to meal plan because I'm going grocery shopping after the dentist appointment today.  I'm tired of meal planning.  I'm tired of figuring out dinners for my family and making sure we eat our veggies and have salad and make well rounded choices.  I'm tired of making lunches and trying to give my kids healthy choices and then not get discouraged when the grapes and carrots come back home, like they just went on a little field trip to see what school looks like and then come back home to hang out in the fridge until maybe someone eats them or I throw them out because no one ever did.  But then I circle back to being tired of being squishy, so what's a girl to do.  She has to buck up and plan dinners and keep feeding her family veggies and sending her kids healthy choices in their lunches, even if they end up trading them for Pringles or fruit roll ups or come back home untouched.  This has been extra annoying lately because my husband has been traveling for work.  I don't necessarily mind him traveling for work, but I don't really like making dinner when he's gone.  My kids are by no means picky eaters so it's not like I'm making stuff that they just won't eat, but I still don't like putting in a whole lot of effort when it's just the three of us.  Also because I'm the only one around to help with homework and pick up after sports or other activities, so I can't be doing all of that and spending a ton of time prepping dinner unless I do it earlier in the day.  For the past couple years I'd been really good about limiting the amount of processed food we eat.  Somehow that's been slipping.  My kids have had Lunchables I don't even know how many times in the past few months, my husband bought them Hot Pockets at one point, and they were totally in love.  They've also been introduced to Totinos pizzas, Bagel Bites, and pizza rolls.  We even had Oreos and Twinkies in our house at various times.  Seriously, I don't know when the last time has been I bought so much crap food.  Our soda consumption has increased, our junky food in general has increased.  I got lax and now it's been a slippery slope to eating like crap.  My 10 year old complains pretty often that his stomach hurts, which I'm sure directly relates to the increase of crap food he's having.  I need to get us back on track.  I need to be motivated so my family can be healthy.

Hopefully the husband and my bet of getting in five workouts a week in which we burn at least 300 calories a time will help.  Hopefully a Caribbean cruise for my birthday is the carrot dangling on the stick I need to get back on track.  Hopefully wanting my family to be putting healthy, nourishing foods into their bodies will help me want to meal plan and make good food choices for all of us.  Hopefully I find some kind of workout plan that makes me want to go to the gym instead of me going and putting in the barest minimum effort possible just to say I went and got it done.  Hopefully after I finish doing the dishes I was too lazy to do last night, I get my squishy butt to the gym and actually do something.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Getting serious again

I didn't even look to see when the last time was I updated this blog, but I'm fairly certain it was 2013 sometime.  I'm doing my first triathlon this coming weekend since I did the half Ironman in October of 2013.  Stupid sprained ankle kept me from the two races I had registered for last spring.  I just got back from a brick workout and felt like updating on here and recording some of my thoughts about how my fitness life is going.

The day after the half Ironman race, my husband and I left for a week in Mexico to celebrate our 10 year anniversary.  Coincidentally I gained 10 pounds while on the trip, and I've been fighting to lose it ever since.  I just go back and forth on how I feel about losing weight.  I know I could weigh close to 20 pounds less than I do now, but it would involve working out for almost two hours each day and counting every single calorie that goes into my mouth.  Frankly that's just not how I want to live my life.  However, I'm not at all happy with how I look now and know I need to make some changes and find a happy medium between where I am now (kind of being mindful of what I eat and exercising sporadically) and the extreme of exercising a ton and monitoring everything I eat.

I did lose eight pounds while having pneumonia back in February, but most of it came back once I was healthy again.  Bummer.  I was looking pretty good there for awhile and fitting into jeans I hadn't been able to wear all winter.

We take an annual trip to Florida every summer with some of my mom's cousins and their families.  I booked our airfare last week, and it was kind of a wake-up call that in two short months I'll basically be spending a week straight in a swimsuit.  Yikes.  So the husband and I made a deal.  He's been in the same boat as me, wanting to lose weight and get more tone and fit but not having the real motivation to do it.  Our wine consumption probably doesn't help us either.  So we made a bet of sorts.  We both want to lose 10 pounds before the Florida trip, so we are using the Lose It app to track our calories and exercise.  Part of the bet is that we have to log every day and aim to be under for the week.  If we go over on calories a day or two, that's forgivable as long as the weekly total is under.  If one of us falls off the wagon and stops logging, we have to give the other person $150 of our Christmas/birthday fun money for the other to have as fun spending money in Florida.  If we both succeed, we each get $150 out of general funds as fun money.

This past week was our first week at it, and it went pretty well.  It's not uncommon for me to start using Lose It during the week and then slack and not record anything on the weekend and then just not go back to using it at all, so I'm pretty pleased with myself that I stuck to it over the weekend, even though I went over pretty significantly on Saturday.  But we were on a day trip wine tasting.

I've been struggling with some lung issues since November.  I had what was diagnosed as bronchitis from the middle of November until early January, then I was okay for a few weeks, then I had pneumonia.  I was well again for about four or five weeks after that and then started coughing again.  Enough was enough, so I went to see my pulmonologist.  She gave me an official asthma diagnosis, so I have a new super inhaler I take twice a day which does seem to be helping.  I wound up with some sinus thing or allergies or a cold last week, and I feel like my lungs are still battling that, especially when I tried to run after the bike ride today.  I felt pretty good on the bike, although I was breathing harder than normal, but the run just kicked my ass.  I couldn't catch my breath, and then I couldn't remember if I'd taken my inhaler this morning or not.  Oops.  At least the race this weekend is only a sprint, which I should be able to muscle through just fine.

My goal for the week is to exercise most days (brick workout today, weights and swimming tomorrow, run on Wednesday, bike on Thursday, take Friday off to rest up for the race on Saturday) but not go into my exercise calories at all to make sure I'm under for the week because I know I will be indulging after the race!  I planned out our dinners for the week (except one day...I need a vegetarian something...) and may plan out breakfast and lunch, too, just to make sure I'm staying on my calories.  We have some pretty busy evenings this week, so I don't think wine will be a problem.  And actually I think I'm going to scale back the wine drinking as well.  If I want an adult beverage I think vodka is the way to go...fewer calories and carbs.  And I'm pretty sure when I was at my lowest weight we consumed more vodka than wine, so surely the wine has to play a part.

I feel like this was kind of all over the place, but I'm glad for me that I wrote it all down.  The "run" today was definitely disappointing and has me slightly concerned for the race on Saturday, but I guess if I have to walk some of it, I have to walk some.  Doing well at the race is not one of my goals...I just want to finish!

Friday, May 24, 2013

Two years later

I grabbed a t-shirt to put on a couple nights ago and saw it was from the first 5K race I ever ran, Girls on The Run 5k, two years ago this month.  I stood in my closet staring at a minute and thinking, "Is that really right?  That was just two years ago?"  I was amazed that it was just over two years ago that I started running, about 2.5 years ago that I lost a bunch of weight and started getting fit and active.  In two years time I've gone from starting the Couch to 5K running program (where I struggled to run 90 seconds in a row sometimes) to being registered for a Half Ironman distance triathlon (that's a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike ride, and 13.1 mile run).

Really?!  That seems like such a huge jump in activity in a relatively short period of time.

It's funny how ingrained in me it's become to be active and fit and push myself physically and mentally, and really any time prior to January 2011, that was not the case at all.  Sure I went to the gym, but I didn't really try hard, nor did I really even know what I was doing when I look back on it.  And I gave up really easily.  Like, really easily.  There was one time (this was pre-Lasik and pre-kids and pre-husband so maybe not the best example since it's not very recent, but it definitely illustrates my mindset) that I hadn't worn my contacts to work and had worn my glasses instead.  I flat out told my friend from work that I exercised with that I didn't like exercising in my glasses, so I thought I'd just skip and go home after work.  Seriously?!  So, see, it's pretty impressive I've gotten where I am.

You hear people say, "Oh I could never do that" in regards to so many physical activities or racing, and it's really just total bullshit, excuse the language.  You totally could do it if you got motivated or just started trying!  I got in the pool in the winter of 2012 and was an awful, awful swimmer.  I could barely make it a full lap without gasping for breathe at the end.  Swimming was a lot harder than I remembered it being.  But I worked at it, found a training plan and practiced, and I got better at it.  Same with running.  Same with any kind of exercise.

It sounds so cliche, but really, if I could do it, anyone can do it.  I'm never going to win a race, I'll never stand on a podium at the end of a race.  But I'll get out there and do races, and I'll do my best and push myself, and I'll cross the finish line and get a medal.  I'm okay with never winning.  I would have never, ever, ever, never, ever, never, never, ever, never, ever imagined myself doing a triathlon.  Swimming, biking, running all in a row?!  Wait...any kind of running at all?!  No way.  But I tried one, and it was a blast, and I loved it.  And now I'm signed up to do a freakin' 70.3 race in less than five months.  Once I did a tri and liked it, I figured at some point I'd do a 70.3, but I didn't think that would be until at least 2014 if not even further out.  A friend from elementary school who has done several 70.3 and 140.6 races pretty much told me to man up and do one, that I would always put it off if I didn't just go for it.  So I did.  And now I go back and forth between thinking it's going to be awesome to wondering WTF did I sign up to do.  But like I said, I won't be on the podium, but I'll cross the finish line and get a medal and slap a freakin' 70.3 sticker on the back of my minivan and consider myself a total badass.

My friends Jen, Benah, and me at my first ever 5K.

At my last triathlon.  I normally don't look this joyful running, I was just tired of having awful running race pictures and decided to pose a little.  If only I looked this happy with less than a quarter mile to go to the finish line!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Esprit De She post race

Race day was yesterday.  I felt pretty good going into it and really thought I could rock it and take some names.  Then things kind of went downhill.  I should have left a few minutes earlier than I did because I felt a bit rushed to get everything set up and ready once I was there, even though I had 30 minutes until transition closed.  I almost forgot to put my water bottle on my bike and on my run belt, but thankfully I remembered when I was doing a final review of everything I'd set out.

The husband and boys got there before the start, so I was able to see them and get hugs and kisses before starting the race.  For the first time ever doing a race at this starting point (this was my third race to start there), I didn't whack my foot on a ledge getting in to the water, so that was a bonus.  Once again I felt rushed because the swim start seemed pretty far from where we jumped in the water, and the group I started with was HUGE.  It was definitely the most chaotic start I've ever been a part of.  It seemed as soon as I got to the swim start they started the countdown for the wave to go.  I barely had time to pee in my wet suit!  Sorry if you didn't know that's a thing triathletes do. ;)  The wave I started with was huge, so it was really hard to get going at first.  I've done several open water swims, but I still don't like the feeling of being hit and kicked or having people swim over me.  I had an awful time sighting on the first leg of the swim because we were swimming east into the sun, so that made it hard to see, plus my goggles were fogging up a little.  I was really struggling to breathe and control my heart rate, too.  Usually my heart rate stays pretty low during a swim (not like when I run), and this time I felt like my heart was pounding and racing in my chest.  Not in a panic attack way, just a really exerting myself way.  Which is weird.  I still don't know why.  Once I made the turn to head back west I was slightly more confident since I could at least sight easier.  I didn't check my Garmin at all to see what my time was like until I was out of the water.  18:30.  Not bad, not good.  Better than my last sprint, but still a little slower than I had hoped for.  But I guess since I did stop once to try and catch my breath a little that it wasn't an entirely bad time.  I made it out of the water okay and had race volunteers help me get my wet suit off.  I tell ya, that is the most helpful thing.  John and the boys were standing there as I headed towards T1 and I got to high five my kids.  I wish I would have seen them before John took my picture so I would have been smiling, but instead I look...focused.  yeah, focused.

Swim time: 19:32 (time includes wetsuit removal and running a ways to the transition area, plus I didn't start my Garmin right away)

I was really pleased with my T1 time when I saw it.  John said I did a great job in T1.  It probably helped that it was a smaller race so the transition area wasn't that big.  Got to my bike, tossed my wetsuit and swim gear to the side, and got ready for the bike.  Gu in pocket, sunglasses on, helmet on, bike shoes on, grab bike, go.  I hate running/jogging in my bike shoes, but I did it a bit so maybe that was part of why my time was good.

T1 time: 1:41

I had high hopes for the bike.  I really thought I could hold a pace of 17 MPH for most of it.  Then I discovered a good chunk of the course was uphill.  Well, of course there were downhills to counteract the uphills, but going 23 MPH downhill didn't make up for the 13 MPH I was doing going uphill.  It was pretty discouraging.  The one good thing was that I managed to stay on my aero bars except for one section of uphill riding and one or two turns on the course.  I got passed A LOT, but I also passed a few people, so I guess it works out.  I knew on the bike that I wasn't going to PR the race.  I knew I had to be off the bike by 1:10 total time for me to have any chance of hitting a PR.  I glanced at my Garmin at 1:12 and knew it was done since I still had a mile or two to go on the bike.  Awful feeling.  I tried not to let it get me down, but it was really discouraging.

Bike time: 53:51 (ouch)

I figured at this point I could still rock the run and at least get a decent run time.  When I made one of the final turns on the bike I only saw John there and not the boys, so I knew my mom must have gotten there which helped knowing there was one more person there cheering for me.  They ended up over by the transition area and were cheering for me while I got my running gear on.

T2 time: 2:16

I started off on the run and felt okay.  I told myself I was only walking on the two uphill portions I knew of and through the one water station.  And I stuck to that.  I was pleased when my Garmin buzzed after the first mile, and I saw my time for that mile was 11:08.  that's a lot faster than I've been running lately.  The run course for this race was similar to the Olympic tri I did last month.  Obviously this was shorter, but I at least had an idea of how it went and what to expect this time.  The first uphill was pretty tiny, and I stuck to my promise to myself and ran again once I was up the hill.  The aid station was maybe half a mile past that, walked as I drank my water and had a volunteer shoot me with a squirt gun (I should really have us volunteer at a race as a kids would have a blast squirting people!), then it was back to running.  One more uphill a bit after the second mile marker, then I ran the rest of the way.  I was actually a little surprised with how easy the run felt to me.  Or maybe I just wanted to have one decent leg of the race.  The run course took us across a bridge and then basically a u-turn down into a park to the finish chute.  I could see John and my mom and the kids from the bridge, and as I reached them they were cheering and my boys ran up to me and each took a hand. I absolutely LOVED having them run the finish chute with me and cross the finish line with me.  I told them they needed to be fast and they were!  This is the first time I've been excited to see my race pictures because I can't wait to see the pictures of me and them together.  Although really I think they were more excited about the Gatorade I shared with them than anything else.  Even with walking portions of miles two and three, my average pace still ended up under 12:00 which I'm really pleased with.

Run time: 36:28

Total time: 1:53:50

I was looking at race data last night after results were posted, and the average time for the sprint was 1:46.  I'm assuming a lot of people sucked on the bike leg because of the hills.  It never even occurred to me the bike course was hilly.  Normally Tempe triathlon bike routes are along flat roads.  In hindsight I should have driven the bike course I guess to see what it was like ahead of time.  The race is what it is.  I know I really did my best, so I'm pleased with how I did, I just wish my time reflected that I tried my hardest.  That's what's so discouraging I think.

Now I have over five months until my next race, the--gulp--70.3.  I'm going to take a break from tri training and get back in the weight room and work on building some strength, hopefully gaining muscle and losing some fat.  I need to start looking for a 70.3 training plan that's around 16 weeks long.  I think 12 is too short and 20 would be too long, and I'd burn out way before the race.  But for now I'm going to enjoy not swimming, biking, and running twice a week each and focus on making my 70.3 a good race.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Esprit De She Eve

I had my first tri of the year a few weeks ago that I need to write up a review about (my first Olympic distance!), but tomorrow is my first sprint of the year. Actually then after this my only other race is the 70.3 in October. I'm pretty excited to get a few weeks off tri training and get back in the weight room for awhile.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to this race tomorrow, the Esprit De She. This is its inaugural year which is pretty exciting. It's a women's only tri (or duathlon or 5k) which is kind of cool. The last race I did was pretty huge with three different distances, so it was kind of crazy to see such a small transition area today. I'd guess there are less than 1,000 women participating. My bib number is 123 which the husband and I think is pretty cool. I like interesting bib numbers, what can I say.

It's a little weird because this is the first race of any kind I've ever done where I don't know anyone else doing it. With the tris I've done I haven't ever done a leg of them with someone I knew doing the race, it was all solo, but it was still nice knowing that I knew other people out on the course. Most runs I've done with someone by my side (except the last Rock and Roll Half in January, but I knew the husband was ahead of me somewhere and a girlfriend of mine was probably within half a mile or a mile of me). It'll mostly be weird getting my transition area set up and then having no one to hang out with or talk to while waiting for the race to start. The husband is bringing the boys for the race, and they're planning on being there the whole time which is awesome. My mom is going to be at the finish line, too, which I'm super excited for because she's never been able to see me finish any kind of race, even though she's tried many times! I'm hoping my boys will cross the finish line with me because I love seeing that, and I want them to know how awesome it feels.

My previous sprint time wasn't that great, so I'm hoping to improve by a few minutes. Here's how it looked for the one I did in September:

Swim - 20:38
T1 - 2:10
Bike - 45:26
T2 - 2:19
Run - 38:36
Total - 1:49:09

That's a horrible swim time for a 750m swim. I'm hoping to come in around 17 minutes on the swim. I think it's totally attainable because I did a 1500m swim at the Olympic in 35 minutes. My transition times are probably going to be about the same. My average speed on the bike that race was 16.27 MPH. I'd like to be around 17 MPH, but that will partly depend on wind and other conditions. There are a lot of turns in the course which sucks, and it's two loops of a six mile course. Ugh. I hate looping. So if I can keep my speed around 17 MPH, I can shave a few minutes off of that. My run pace worked out to be 12:27. That's maybe a minute slower than I usually run, so I could potentially gain three more minutes there if I really bust ass and make myself run the whole time. I've fallen out of love with running recently, so the run portion is my biggest concern. I walked quite a bit in my last sprint because of some shoe issues, and I know that won't be the case this time, so I'm hoping for a better pace.

So all in all I could potentially cut up to eight minutes off my previous sprint time. I'm not going to hold my breath that it happens, but I really hope I can finish with a better time. I decided during the Olympic that I really didn't care what my time ended up being because it's pretty bad ass that I'm out there doing triathlons in the first place. Granted it was to partly appease myself because I was so over the whole thing and just wanted to be done and didn't care how long it took me. I decided I didn't even care if I was last because at least the person in last place still finishes, right?

My bag is packed, my tri suit is ready to be donned in the morning, my Garmin is charged. I've done hardly zero training since my race a few weeks ago, my nutrition today wasn't the best, and I've been fighting an obnoxious little cold all week. But hopefully none of that matters and I completely rock this race tomorrow!  Oh, and if nothing else, there's a mimosa bar after you cross the finish line, so at least I have that to motivate me along!