Friday, November 30, 2012

Change O' Plans.

I try to make plans that I can stick to. I try not to be too ambitious with my plans so that they don't go flying off the tracks. Then sometimes life happens and plans go astray anyway. Oddly, this seems to happen on the weekends. Well, for me anyway.

I had big at-home plans for the weekend... Cleaning, painting, and decorating for Christmas. My cousin texted me this morning asking if I could babysit. Naturally, I don't mind doing this and I have a super fun time with the Little Miss, but this has caused me to try to figure out what to do about my plans.  Now I need to figure out what to do. I have about an hour and a half of working out scheduled... TF and BBL. Together I've got about an hour and fifteen minutes to do. I can do that right away, so I have no worries...Except that she'll be here around 7:00 and I'll need to eat, shower, and pick-up a little before she gets here...Or at least hide her Christmas gifts that are in the big Christmas gift box in my living room. Neither my cousin or her daughter will care if the house isn't sparkling. But still... I'm getting down to CRUNCH time.

Tomorrow I am scheduled to run seven miles. I was hoping to sleep in a little before I do this.  Little Miss will be up around 8:00, I'd guess. Based on my treadmill time (slower than my outdoor pace), it'll take me over an hour to do this run.... Roughly an hour and 20 minutes. I'll have to get up early, on Saturday, in order to get this run done before she gets up. There is NO way I'll be able to do a treadmill run after she gets up. She'd get into too much stuff. I also don't have a jogging stroller, or we'd bundle up and head outside.

My option is to switch my workouts... I'm not sure I want to do that though. I'm not in the mood to run seven miles right now. Then again, I probably will not be in the mood to run it later in the day when she naps either. Plus I'd have to squeeze in a shower and she generally doesn't nap for that long. I suppose my best bet is to run now and do whichever DVD work I can get done tomorrow before she gets up, or during her nap time...Or maybe even while she plays. I can see her trying to do the workout with me...Could be fun!!

I was looking forward to a high burn tomorrow but I suppose tonight is okay. I don't have plans on eating a lot more where I need extra calories tomorrow so I should be just fine. I know the DVD workout will be less of a burn, but I also plan on cleaning (with a two year-old - ha!) tomorrow, so that will be a little extra.  She shouldn't be too bad to handle while cleaning... I have enough toys for her to play with, and she'll probably try to help me. If anything, I won't get as much done, or as in-depth, as I would like, but I'll be able to do something at least.  I'd like to get a jump on that now, but I really need to get a workout in.... Especially these seven miles!

Painting will likely not happen until Sunday. MAYBE sometime tomorrow if I can figure it out. I should be able to get a good jump on it while she's napping. My bathroom isn't that big, the current color is light and I'm painting a darker color, so it shouldn't take a terribly long time. I can also work on it alter in the night, I suppose.... And maybe finish Sunday. I'll save decorating for Sunday afternoon, after football of course. Or maybe I will paint on Sunday. We'll see. After writing about it I want to do it tonight! Probably NOT a good idea though!

I have a fairly busy weekend ahead, but it'll be a good one. I'm looking forward to spending some time with my favorite little girl and getting some stuff done around the house.  I might get a jump on some of it tonight after I put her to bed. We'll see how tired I happen to be!

I'm still considering doing a run on Sunday morning. My friend said she'll do it with me if it isn't raining. I'd like to do it but also have a couple other things I'd want to do while we're in the area. I'm pretty sure it's not nice to take up someone's time shopping for new running shoes when you're only planning on a five mile run. I don't HAVE to shop for shoes tomorrow but since the run is right by the shoe store, it would be nice to just stop by and get them. I suppose I can always get shoes a different day!

I guess it's time to go hit the treadmill....At least if I want to get this run done and have time to, at least, eat and shower before the girls get here. I know my cousin doesn't care about what a mess my house is, but I do!! I also know it's not like it's that bad but I like to have things picked up when people come over.... Siiiighhh... I'll survive.

Plans may go off-track but sometimes a little rearranging is all it takes to get things done. I have a new plan (well, sort of... I know what I want to do; just not when) and hopefully it will work out as I hope. Whatever happens, I am planning to accomplish the things I'd like to this weekend!! Hopefully all goes according to plan. I know I can't control other people and situations but I can control as much of it as possible!

Have a happy, healthy weekend!!!

XOXO

Brownies.

I receive Jillian Michaels' "Losing It" news letter and one that I received this week had this recipe in it. Looks yummy - and is one that I will be trying soon. Hmm... Maybe tomorrow. I think I have all the ingredients on-hand. I'm babysitting my favorite Little Miss and I'm sure she'd enjoy "helping" me. I use that term loosely; she's two.

Anyway...Here's the recipe:

Ingredients

cooking spray, olive oil-flavored
for the pan
2/3 cup(s) honey
mild, such as clover or orange blossom
1/3 cup(s) cocoa powder, unsweetened
natural
1/2 cup(s) flour, white whole-wheat
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
(*recipe calls for aluminum-free)
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup(s) applesauce, unsweetened
2 tablespoon oil, olive
1 large egg(s) at room temperature
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions

    Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray an 8-inch square pan with olive oil. Set aside.
    Place the honey in a large glass measuring cup. Microwave on high power until the honey is runny and just bubbling, 45 to 60 seconds. Add the cocoa and stir with a fork until well combined. Let cool to room temperature.
    Meanwhile, in a small bowl, place the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk until well combined.
    In a large bowl, combine the applesauce, oil, egg, and vanilla. Whisk together until well blended. Add the honey- cocoa mixture and whisk until smooth. Add the flour mixture to the liquid mixture and stir until no traces of flour remain. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan.
    Bake until the surface looks dry around the edges of the pan and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs clinging to it, about 25 minutes. Do not overbake. Place the pan on a cooling rack and let cool completely before slicing into 16 squares. (Store the brownies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.) Makes 16 (2-inch) brownies.

    And the nutritional info:

    Nutritional Information Amount Per Serving

    Calories86.2
    Total Fat2.2g
    Saturated Fat-
    Sodium63.6mg
    Carbohydrates16g
    Dietary Fiber-
    Protein1.3g

    This is the website for the recipe; credit jillianmichaels.com.

    When I make these, I'll be sure to share my experience.... Maybe even in some pictures

    XOXO

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Over 17,000.


WOW! I wasn't paying much attention to my page views but I noticed the number when I logged in today. Over 17,000 views!? Thanks to all of you who have read this... Whether one, sporadically, or every entry, it's awesome to know that there are people who are actually reading what I have to say. I hope that at least some of my entries have helped some of you (okay, I KNOW I've reached a few of you - thanks for the response!).

I don't really have much directly related to physical health and fitness today.  Last night's workout was not as intense as my usual workouts. It was just as long in duration, but much of it was muscle building. I did my least favorite Brazil Butt Lift workout - High and Tight. It's my least favorite because it works me the most. After that was BBL Leandro's Secret. I ended up doing a few extra minutes because the DVD starts to freeze at points part way through (has since I got it; must be scratched or something). Both of those were not very intense, although they were agonizingly painful at points. That's a good thing... And I certainly feel it today.

After that I did TurboFire Low HIIT 20 and stretch 10.  I like this workout. It goes by so fast! I'm still new to it and am learning the moves, which can take a little time. I think that because I'm still learning, I'm not putting maximum intensity into it, so my calorie burn isn't all that high. Hopefully as I learn I'll become more intense with my movements.  I suppose that's the point of the "prep" class.... To learn how TF works and to learn the moves before really getting into the higher intensity stuff.

Just like the previous nights this week, I had trouble sleeping last night. It took a while to fall asleep and then I woke up a few times during the night. Again, because of that, I did not get up early to workout. I'll be doing a long workout tonight....Just five minutes shy of two hours is what's on the schedule. It'll start with a run, only 30 minutes today, so that will be nice.  Then I have a RB workout to do, that last 45 minutes. Then I am supposed to do TF Stretch 40.  I'm pretty sure I've mentioned it, but if you missed it... Stretch 40 is basically 40 minutes of yoga hell.  I hate it! I have a friend who did TF and skipped that one.  It's a very tempting idea.  I know yoga is good for me and helps the muscles and such but honestly...40 FREAKIN' MINUTES? It is pure torture.

So that's that.

I'm currently trying to figure out my workout routine for next weekend. I'm flying to Florida for a good friend's wedding. I'm taking an early flight on Friday morning so I'll leave Thursday after work so that I'm closer to the airport. This means that I'll either do only my morning run, or try to get up super early and do my entire workout in the morning. We. Shall. See.

Really Friday is the only day that could be difficult.  I suppose I could take my laptop and do some DVD work on Friday evening. Saturday is a running day, so I'll at least get a three mile run done.... Along the lovely Florida coast. I think a beach run will be a great idea, even if it's longer than three miles. I'll be in Sanibel, which is on the Gulf of Mexico. It looks lovely, and I will be sure to enjoy an early morning outdoor run. I can almost smell the ocean air now!! I also have DVD work to do that morning, unless I decide to go for a longer run.

Here's a question... How does one go about flying with their laptop? I've never done it. I just haven't had the need to take my laptop anywhere I've flown. Now that I'm doing this fairly strict workout regime, I'd like to take it with. Just because I will be away doesn't mean I can't workout. Can I stash it in my carry-on or do I have to use it as my "personal item."  I'm too afraid to put it in my checked bag, as I do not want it to magically disappear - or get ruined.

I am SO excited to go!! I'm excited to be there for two very good friends when they get married. I love this couple. They've been together for about a hundred years now (okay maybe I exaggerated) and they're so great together. I'm glad I will be there for their special day!! Sunny, warm Florida will make it an even better experience! I guess I should start digging out a couple summery things for Friday afternoon and Saturday. It will be 76 degrees and sunny both days...Well, that's the high so somewhere in the 70s I would guess.

Also...I did NOTHING Christmasy last night. Instead I soothed my muscles in a hot bath, while reading Shape and Fitness. Oh! I did listen to the music on the Rockefeller special so I suppose that counts as something Christmasy.

Well, time to go workout! I'm still undecided about yoga. I might skip it completely or do something else. I really do not like yoga. At this point, I think I'll skip the stinkin' yoga. I know, I know... It's good for the muscles, but it's 40 minutes of torture. 40 minutes that I could be doing something else.  I think that if the RB workout wasn't 45 minutes on its own, I'd be more willing to do yoga. Honestly, though, after running for 30 minutes and doing a dance workout for 45, I'm not going to want to do 40 minutes of yoga. Maybe I'll do something else though. I just can't deal with the thought of yoga tonight. I'm already tired, the last thing I need is to go into a state of relaxation (following yoga) when I have things I should be doing at home... Like trying to get Christmasy. Again. We shall see what happens this time! A bit shorter of a workout means more time to be productive around the house...
Hope your week has been good to you so far!!

XOXO


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Christmas Spirit has Arrived

I'm not sure what has happened but I'm suddenly hit with the Christmas spirit. I was not feeling it until today. In fact I was so not feeling it that prior to Thanksgiving when people suddenly started posting things about Christmas, I got annoyed. I mean, let's get through Thanksgiving first! I will say that I started my Christmas shopping before that. I actually finished with a couple people before that. Believe me though, it was a small start.  I wasn't really thinking of Christmas prep, just getting a jump on shopping. I finished shopping for someone else over the weekend and started on a few more people.

Here it is, after black Friday and cyber Monday and I've got the bug. I want to do more shopping. I want to decorate. It must be all of the posts I'm reading about people getting their trees and decorations ready. I usually wait until at least December first before doing any decorating. Often though, I wait until my birthday, which is 15 days before Christmas.  I guess it was just a habit I got into. I mean, why rush through one holiday to get to the next. The holiday I'm referring to would be my birthday. Not that I decorate my house for my birthday (although a fun, glittery, pink explosion would be a wonderful idea), but I like to get through that before I worry much about Christmas.

Not this year.  I was actually going to start on Sunday evening but decided I was too tired. The last couple days have been longer workout days, so by the time I'm done with everything I have to do, I want to relax.  Today I have the Christmas bug. So much so that I would like to start decorating now, rather than working out. However, if I do that, it will make working out even harder to start, so I will be waiting until post-workout, post-shower, and post-dinner to consider doing anything Christmas-like. I've gotta make room for the tree so maybe I'll just wrap some presents tonight. That might help satisfy the urge a bit. I hope.

Or maybe some online shopping. Aeropostale has some awesome deals going on right now and American Eagle has some cute stuff in stock; some on sale. I know of a couple people who I can shop for on both of those sites.  It might be a good time to do a little of that, especially if I'm feeling tired.  It looks like the weekend will be pretty decent and since I have decided to stay home and get some things done, I might save my decorating for Saturday. I'll try to do my cleaning on Friday evening, although if I'm tired I'll wait until Saturday. After that I'll decorate, and on Sunday I'll do whatever else I need to do. 

I'm considering running a race on Sunday morning. It's only five dollars to register (then shirts and such can be purchased at the race) and it will be a fun one. It's either a 2.5 or 5 mile race, revolving around the uber popular mustache.  Yup. It's a Stache Dash! Sounds like fun, huh?  I have some fake mustaches but they're not all that amazing. I wonder if I can create something fabulous by then! Not that I have any ideas at the moment but that's okay...

I also REALLY need to take advantage of the warm-ish weekend, and a rare weekend at home with no major plans, to re-do my bathroom. Confession? I still have not even painted it.  That's on the agenda for this weekend, and I should probably put that at the top of the list; over Christmas decorating (but after cleaning). I also really need to go through Mt. Laundry (in my basement) again. I have a ton of clothes that are clean, but reside in baskets in the basement. I'm sure I have some that I can store until spring too.  I don't mind doing laundry.  I hate putting laundry away.

So... This weekend will be full of running (seven miles on Saturday) and random things around the house. I'll get some groceries on Sunday afternoon, and may do that run in the morning, but other than that my home is getting some much-needed TLC this weekend. I can't wait!

I should say that's my plan anyway.... We all know how planning goes sometimes.

Tonight's workout is a little shorter than the last few have been...Only 80 minutes this time. I don't expect it to be a big calorie burning day, so maybe I won't be so tired after working out.  I've been tired all week; morning and night.  My plan has been to do two workouts a day, one in the morning and one in the evening. I haven't done that all week; which explains the longer evening workouts. I've been tired. I've had trouble falling asleep and I've woken up at night. I'm more fatigued than normal. I think this is a combination of having a couple things on my mind and hormones. I'm also feeling super hungry this week, which is why I think that the hormones are playing a part in my fatigue level.  They usually do. 

I think that what has been on my mind might be getting me into the Christmas mood.  It's partly distraction, partly hope.  It's not something that I'm going through, but a family I'm close to is. These are people who are very dear to me and they've had a difficult time the last several days. I think that my embracing Christmas, I'm being hopeful of their situation... That things will get better; that things will be righted; that they will be able to celebrate Christmas as a family. This time of year should be a time of joy and togetherness. Not sadness and uncertainty.

It's reminded me of how important it is to be thankful for what we have; how lucky I am. It's made me take a moment to really think about what's important to me. I guess that's put me in the mood to get ready for Christmas because Christmas, to me, is a time of family and a time of love. I'm a bit of a hopeless romantic, so the romanticism of Christmas really gets to me too... I just love it... Even just sitting with only the Christmas tree lights on, sipping hot chocolate (or tea!). It's a comfort to me. And I just love the twinkling of Christmas lights. As much as I hate snow and the cold, one of my perfect marriage proposals revolves around Christmas, which is generally (in this area) accompanied by the cold and snow.

I think another part of me is seeking out the comfort that I feel around Christmas time. I need that sense of warmth and that sense of love. In working toward that comfort, I'll be distracted so that my mind is not running wild or I'm not focusing too much on the situation at hand. I'm refusing to accept that Christmas will be any different than it should be, and has been, for this family. I know that what will happen is what will happen, but I have to remain hopeful and positive, and this is what helps me to do that.

Well... As if I wasn't already emotional, my own thoughts and words have just made me a bit more emotional. More than a bit, I'd say. I suppose it's time to go workout. That will allow me to focus on something else and escape from my own thoughts for a little while. 

Hope you've had a wonderful Wednesday!!

XOXO

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Turkey Trot, Thanksgiving, and the Weekend

Well. I did not post like I had planned. I was hoping to have at least posted something about the run on Thursday. I knew the rest of the weekend would be busy, but I didn't realize just how busy it would be!! I suppose a recap, divided by day will be the best way to put several days of missed posting into one post.  I'll try to keep it to a summary so that it isn't so insanely long!

Wednesday - Pre-Thanksgiving Thanksgiving dinner with my parents and grandparents. My Mom is an ER nurse and had to work 12 hours on Thanksgiving, so we had dinner early. I hadn't gotten an intense workout done that day, and due to having an appointment only worked out in the morning. My burn wasn't even 300 calories. I tried to keep my eating light earlier in the day because I knew dinner would be heavy.  It was.  I didn't get out of  control but ate more than I normally would've. Since there were so few of us, my Mom bought a turkey breast to roast for dinner rather than a whole turkey.  I had a small piece of turkey, some cheesy potatoes (which became breakfast on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday - hey, they're like hash browns, right!?), green beans, squash, a salad, fruit, a little broccoli salad, a dinner roll, and a pumpkin cheesecake shooter (light dessert thanks to Skinnytaste!). I kept the scoops of healthy stuff big, and the not-so-healthy stuff (hello, potatoes) small. I drank water.  I tracked everything but ended up being over calories for the day anyway.  I don't like that I couldn't measure/weigh my food exactly and I didn't have the exact counts for some of the foods (like the potatoes and broccoli salad - everyone makes theirs differently).  I'm not sure if my counts were really far off or at least somewhat close, or even under, but I tracked as best as I could.

Thursday - I got up early; my alarm went off about 5:30 but I'd been a awake since 5:09. I stayed in bed until about 5:40 or 5:45 before I got up. I took a shower, brushed my teeth, and then changed into my running gear.  I toasted a bagel, filled a water bottle, and headed out the door around 6:20, goofed around with the GPS (I didn't know where I was going within the city - Thirlby Field, a HS football stadium), and finally hit the road about 6:25. I ate my bagel and drank my water on the way. I had about an hour-and-a-half drive from my parents' to get to the Traverse City Turkey Trot. I arrived around 8, picked up my packet, and then just relaxed in the car for a while.

I had planned on wearing an awesome turkey costume but there were very few people dressed in costume. I also realized that running five miles in the costume may have been difficult. And hot. The costume was left in the car. Maybe if I do a 5K next year I'll wear it for that... Or maybe even a longer race, just with fewer clothes on under it (unless it's cold!). The weather was beautiful...Sunny and the temp was decent. I think by the time the race started, around 9:00, the temp had to be around 50. That's not bad for a Thanksgiving morning run in Northern Michigan! By the time I headed home, it was around 60... I think 62 was the highest temp I noticed that day.

The race itself went well. I'm still a slower runner (jogger?) but my time was about the same as it's been for my other recent races.  I did the Five Mile Flier, which followed a nice route. It went through part of downtown Traverse City, and along Boardman lake.  The course wasn't quite what I expected. I didn't realize there'd be as many hills as there were (yay for extra calories burned!). I also didn't know that we'd be running along a street that was paved with those little brick things. There were gaps that concerned me, so for that part of the course I slowed down just to be sure that I did not trip and fall on my face. I can be a little clumsy sometimes, so I prefer to play it safe! I loved the paved pathway along the lake, hills and all. It was a gorgeous day outside.  I had no idea where I fell in the group...I always have a fear of  being last, but being so far behind it's noticeable.  I wasn't. Along the lake trail, we had to turn around. I was impressed with some of the leaders in the 5 mile race... WOW! They had times faster than I do a 5K! Anyway, when I reached the turn around point I noticed that I was probably in the middle of the pack. That's my comfort zone.  I was pleased with my place, and finally found my "person."  When I do a race I find someone that has a pace similar to mine and use them as my pace person. This helps me keep going (little bit of competition) when I want to stop. I did walk a bit, at my typical speed walk pace, but mostly ran.  I finished the race in 57:something, an average of an 11:32 mile.  I'm happy with that. The 11 minute range seems to be where I'm running lately (outside anyway, I still tend to go slower on the treadmill).  After the race, I walked around the race area a little to bring my heart rate down. My total fitness time was 61 minutes, with that walk included.

I didn't stick around for long. I grabbed my half of an orange, half of a banana, and a bottle of water and headed out.  I should've gone to the car and got my change of clothes, but didn't want to walk back around the field again. I was SO cold on the way back! All of that sweat made me a bit chilly. I had my heat turned up to about 80. I finally stopped to get gas, and took a hoodie into the bathroom with me so I could change. Sadly at that time by race bib must have fallen out of the car because when I got home it was missing. I like to save my bibs and things, so that was a bummer. I did take a picture of it, so at least I have that! Since I went alone, that's the only race pic I have.

Thanksgiving dinner was fine. I had small scoops of everything "bad" and again loaded up on the healthier stuff. I had one dinner plate, with a decent amount of white space on the plate. I made some spiced pumpkin cupcakes with salted caramel buttercream, so I HAD to try one of those.  Other than my pre-race and post-race snacks, that was the meal for the day (around 2:30 in the afternoon).  I was in excellent shape in terms of calories...Until I decided that it would be a good idea to have some wine. I love wine. I drank more wine than I should have, but even then, the day wasn't a complete disaster!! I did not do an additional workout because I wasn't home early enough in the evening to do so.

Friday - My Mom and I did some shopping, but not super early. We went mid-morning because we didn't have anything we needed to rush to get. We enjoyed some of the deals and door busters, and got some Christmas gifts for people.  We stopped at Panera for lunch on the way home for a cup of soup and half a sandwich.  Earlier in the day I had some cheesy potatoes for breakfast.  It was a later lunch so we weren't really very hungry for dinner. My Mom made some queso dip that we had some tortilla chips with...Pretty much just munchies.  Because of shopping I did not workout like I had planned.

Saturday - My Mom's birthday! I indulged in a scoop of cheesy potatoes and a roll for breakfast (honestly, I'm starting to sound odd), then got to work making my Mom's birthday cake. She went for breakfast with my Grandparents but I passed because I had things to get done and lunch planned with my cousin.  Anyway, I had hoped to squeeze in a workout, just a 30 minute run, but my cousin wanted to meet a little earlier than I had planned on, soooo there went that idea.  My Mom and I met my cousin, her daughter, and my Dad for lunch. The rest of my day was spent babysitting my cousin's daughter.  After lunch my Mom and I ran a couple errands, supported Small Business Saturday, and didn't get home until around 4:00.  I laid down with the little one for a while (she'd been falling asleep in the car on the way home) but she refused to nap. This meant that I could not squeeze in any kind of a workout at that time either.  She's two and is very busy. Instead we played for a while. My Mom left for church with my grandparents around 5, and then the little one and I got ready to head to town. We watched a short Santa parade at 6:30 (she loved all the lights - and candy that they threw to her!), then headed to meet my parents and some friends for my Mom's birthday dinner at 7.  We had cake and ice cream after we got home (my Dad had instructions to bring the cake to dinner but forgot), played for a short time, and then it was bed time for the little miss...I was exhausted too!! Although I ate out, I kept it as healthy as possible. However, I did go over my calories and didn't even get to burn any of them off! I was bummed about that, but what can you do!?

Sunday - My cousin planned to pick her daughter up for church, but was sick and stayed home and slept instead.  I spent the morning playing with her daughter, so again no workout. My Mom had to work, otherwise she would've entertained her for me.  My cousin came over after noon, and we watched the first half of the Bears game.  Then I packed up, cleaned up, and got ready to go home. I had shopping to do, and stopped and talked with my Dad for a while. I ate less than great on Sunday. I'm not sure why... Not large quantities of food, just not healthy food. I stopped and got pizza on the way home because I was SO hungry, and ate a couple pieces on my drive. By the time I got home, hauled things in, and unpacked, I was too tired to do anything, so I again did not workout.

It was a super busy, but fun weekend... I wish I would've been able to workout more but it just was not possible. I had a schedule. I had plans. I adapted those to try to get something done when I could. It just did not happen. Such is life.  I even missed my weigh-in (forgot my scale at home) and measuring on Saturday.  I did weigh yesterday morning, with a sweatshirt, shirt, and sweats on, when I got up, and the scale said I was up three pounds. I'm not sure how accurate that would have been considering my clothing. I wouldn't be surprised with a gain considering the unhealthy, sodium-filled foods that I consumed. I'm also about due to start holding onto water anyway, so that just makes it worse.

I was back on track, for the most part, yesterday. Having had that pizza around didn't help (hello, more sodium) and I did have a slice of that... As well as just toppings from a couple slices. I saw someone track that on MFP and thought it was a good idea. I think it was on the right track, but full fat cheese and pepperoni are filled with things that I don't really need.  It may have been better to just eat the crust!! Today was garbage day so I cleaned out the refrigerator last night, which included the rest of the pizza. I don't need it or really want it (it's never as good re-heated) so it was best to trash it.

The lasagna rolls I made for dinner last night were fairly healthy... Ground turkey, sauce, fat-free cheese, fat-free cottage cheese, reduced fat parmesan cheese, and whole grain noodles.... Healthier than regular lasagna, and pre-portioned! I really wasn't all that hungry but knew that after having worked out, I needed to eat. I did not want to cook, but if I hadn't I would've eaten more pizza - and now I have leftovers for the week!!

Now that the pizza is gone, I'm back to eating healthy with no temptations around (looking at you, pizza!). I had lots of fruit, water, and tea throughout the day. Lunch was leftover dinner. Tonight's dinner menu is tacos... Whole grain shells, heavy on the lettuce (actually using a bagged salad mix), extra-lean ground beef, and fat-free cheese. I'll eat two tacos and may go so heavy on the lettuce mix that it's more like a taco salad.

I suppose I should go get ready to workout. I have an hour and 15 minutes to get done, so it's better to start sooner than later!! I am hoping that by the time I do that and have dinner I'll have time to get something done around the house. I was too tired to do much last night and really should get some cleaning done. Some friends want me to do a Santa Hustle 5K in the city on Saturday morning, which I'm considering. I'd love to do another run but I'm scheduled for 7 miles that day... Not 3.1.  I'd have to later figure out how to do four more miles, plus my other workout. It could be done, but due to time frames and such it would be difficult.  We'll see...I'm considering it, but really need to get some stuff done around my house too. I've been so busy and gone so much lately that I need to give it some major TLC, more than just the typical cleaning.  If not, I suppose there's always the following weekend for that....

More on that later; when I make a decision.

Hope you had a fantastic Thanksgiving and weekend!!!

XOXO

Monday, November 26, 2012

I will post a longer update tomorrow. I'm feeling rather tired this evening and would go to bed right now if I could.

I suppose I could. It's just early!

Why does the first day after having a few off seem so exhausting? I can't believe how easy it is to adapt to an off work schedule but it's about ten times more difficult to adjust to my usual routine. Someone I'm very close to is going through a hard time which is exhausting in its own way.

More tomorrow.

XOXO
Tonight's dinner... A lasagna roll-up! Yum!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Scale Struggle.

I am way too dependant on my (stupid) scale.  I cannot figure out what is going on with my body but my weight keeps bouncing around between a three pound mark. I know I'm not supposed to be weighing more than weekly and the fluctuations can influence it, but I've been checking it more consistently this week.  I'm growing more and more frustrated.  I am about ready to throw my ten pound weight loss goal out the window because about the time I lose a few pounds, I gain it right back. 

I will take measurements and check my body fat this week, but it's only been a few weeks... I doubt I'll see much change in that time. But who knows... Maybe I'll be surprised. I can hope anyway.

Yesterday I was reading some blogs on SP and was feeling slightly encouraged. A fellow Sparker who weighs about 20 pounds less than me has a body fat percentage that's less than half a percent lower than mine was a few weeks ago. I kept thinking about this throughout the night and tried to come up with what that means for me.  How is it that I can be 20 pounds heavier than someone and have a body fat percentage that's thisclose to being the same?

Does that mean I have a heck of a lot of muscle? I know I still have some excess skin, but that really does not weigh very much, so all together I'd say that less than 10 pounds of my weight is skin. 10 pounds is being generous, I think.  Anyway, I FEEL like I have a lot of muscle. The excess skin doesn't show it very well (and let's be honest, anything all lumpy and gross looking appears to be fat - until I do tricks and move it around but I don't go around doing that all day long!), but there's muscle under this skin.

I have fat too, everyone does. I have fat to lose; I'm aware of that. However, when I do the calculations, it isn't as much as I thought. Actually, depending on which chart you look at (some vary slightly), I'm healthy right now. Don't get me wrong, there's room for improvement and I want to improve! My body fat percentage is at a healthy rate, even though I'm in the "overweight" range for BMI. That's because BMI only takes height and weight into consideration.  I am not convinced that body builders, who have a lot of muscle, are unhealthy, as BMI would suggest.  I think that BMI needs to be taken for what it is, just a measure of what you are versus what you "should" be according to some expert who devised this measure.  Just because you might be "overweight" on the BMI chart does not mean you're not healthy. That's why measuring body fat is so important.  In general, athletes are some of the healthiest people ever (assuming they're following all the "rules" appropriately). They might be "overweight" due to their amount of muscle.  Yeah, they're over what's recommended, but they're over in a healthy way.

If you're interested, this is the body fat percentage chart that I looked at today. It's consistent with others that I have read.

Soooo... Is that me? I'm pretty sure it is. I'm not a body builder but I work out a lot and have definitely been building muscle lately. I'm not gonna lie, I kind of enjoy flexing my biceps in the mirror. It helps me monitor the work that I'm doing. I can see the changes in my body when I do a better variety of exercise, other than just cardio. According to my BMI I'm overweight, but my body fat percentage is healthy. I know this, but I still worry about the stupid scale.

I'm hesitant to believe that it's actually muscle. I know people who workout at least as much as I do, if not more, who weight far less. Of course, they had different starting points... They probably started where I am now. I try not to compare myself with others, but that's hard not to do. I know everyone is different, we all have different stories, and are on different journeys.  That doesn't make it any less frustrating.

Why is weight so important to so many of us? Is it because BMI has been around so long that we take that as being the ultimate guide in where we should fall? Is it because the media shows us that 120 pounds is what's acceptable?

I've lost over half of myself and I have muscle now. Yet I let the numbers on that stupid scale get me down! This might irritate me more than my weight. I try so hard to focus on measurements and body fat, on just living healthy and hoping that the scale will eventually catch up... But I can't. I'm still a slave to my scale. I watch those numbers and it's very obnoxious when I feel like I am doing everything correctly, but the numbers don't reflect it.

I weight a little more than last year, but wear a smaller size, and look smaller. Recently people have asked if I've lost more weight.  They think I have even since July (in all fairness I may have still had some post-op swelling at that point; but not much). Even my surgeon asked if I'd lost more weight since July.  I haven't.  In fact I'm about the same as I was pre-op.  I expected to be about ten pounds smaller after surgery; not about the same.  I'm thinking that with everything taken into consideration it has to be muscle contributing to the fact that I cannot seem to lose weight.

I feel better now too... Obviously more than before I lost weight. Even more though, I feel better than I have in the last few months. I feel stronger. With all the working out I do, my body feels tight. At least one of my muscle groups is sore daily; if not more. I'm working hard. I see and feel the difference in my body.  I'm the last person to believe "it's muscle" rather than fat. It would take a lot of convincing for me to fully believe that.

Maybe it's time I start believing it.  I have gone in streaks of not relying on the scale but when you're trying to lose weight, it's hard not to. Losing weight is watching the scale go down.  Is it time that I just accept myself where I am and honestly focus on being healthy? I'll continue to eat healthy and workout. I won't change my way of living, but maybe I need to stop worrying so much about the scale. 

That? Will be a super difficult thing for me to do!! Has anyone had success with that, that they'd like to share?

I hope you have a happy, healthy Thanksgiving!!

XOXO

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Valid Excuse?

What happens when you don't workout because you forget? Is that a valid excuse? Or is it just that, an excuse. I think that if it's accidental and you intend on making it up, it's valid.  I did that this morning.  I hit snooze a few times and did not get up to workout. I didn't think, "oh I'm not doing this" or "I'm too tired."  It was not a conscious thing. I simply just forgot that I was supposed to workout this morning. I have to say it's the first time I've done that.  I must have been tired from not sleeping well on Sunday night. It didn't even dawn on me that I hadn't remembered to workout until I was up and getting ready for the day.  I had one of those "ohhhh...." moments.

I will be working out this afternoon. It's not like it will be a missed workout; just at a different time. I was planning on doing part of the workout this morning (running) and the rest this evening. It's not a problem to do all of it this evening, it just wasn't what I had planned to do! I wanted to get back into the routine of getting up early, since I will have to tomorrow and Thursday. I also have some other things to get done this evening, which I could've used that extra time to do.  I was only planning a 30 minute run this morning since that's what is scheduled, so it's not like it's a huge inconvenience to have to do it all this evening.

However....  I may extend the 30 minutes....Not much but a little.  It's pretty warm today and with my outdoor run coming up on Thursday morning, it would be good to run outside. It's a little dreary and has rained on and off all day, but it's not too bad. Warm clothes should be enough. I think I can handle a little rain. I may need to change before I do my other workouts, but I suppose that's okay.  What's a little more laundry? I'll likely do more than the scheduled 30 minutes, which is pretty typical when I'm outside.

The thing that always stops me? My dogs.  I hate having to put them back in the house and not taking them with me. They're alone all day, except for when I let them out at lunch, and I feel guilty when I do something after work and they're stuck inside, all alone, again.  I would love to take them with me on my run, but it just doesn't work. They love walks and do well with them.

Running is an all together different type of activity. They're very easily distracted, stop abruptly, one dog has to sniff everything, and the other likes to dive-bomb the grass and bite it.  They go in opposite directions, often causing me to do some tricky moves to avoid getting tangled up. Oh, AND my Buddy is not a runner - unless he's playing or chasing something. He's kind of a big guy and gets tired easily. Walks are about all he can handle. 

The other thing that stops me is that I get tired of the same old route. It's the same scenery which I find boring. I could run other areas, which I try to do in order to give myself some variety but I'm limited on running places. It stinks, and makes outdoor running just as boring as treadmill running. I think that's why I like to do so many races - it keeps things fun an interesting. I suppose though, that with running on Thursday, I need to run outdoors, so I'll deal with the boring nature of the run.

After my run I'll need to do my DVD workouts, one of which won't be bad. I'm not looking forward to the other. It's my Turbofire Stretch 40 workout, which is essentially yoga. UGH. I am not a yoga fan. It does relax me though, which is usually nice. I'm not sure how productive I'll want to be after doing yoga though. I suppose it doesn't matter what I'll want to do; I need to get things done tonight.

I guess I should stop procrastinating and get running, before it starts to get dark!

I hope you've had a great Tuesday!

XOXO

Monday, November 19, 2012

I finally made quinoa "mac" and cheese. It wasn't nearly creamy enough to be compared to mac and cheese. I wasn't surprised as others commented that they had the same experience. Next time I will use different cheese and prepare it a little differently.

This is basically a quinoa, cheese, and broccoli bake that's topped with panko. I had some baked chicken and a side of veggies with it.

Despite the non-existent likeness to mac and cheese, it was good!!!

Mmmmmm quinoa!!

Fitness Plan Change and Other Assorted Topics

I decided that on days that I do long runs, I'm not going to do any extra workouts, despite what I have already scheduled. I'm also finding that I really enjoy and need my Sunday rest days. I work hard all week and having one day that I do not have to workout is a great idea.  Not to mention I've been busy the last two weeks (and sick last week), so pushing the Saturday workouts to Sundays hasn't worked well. I'll still leave them on the schedule and if I get to them,  I will do them.... But they're not going to be as something I have to do like my other workouts.

Saturday, after my long run I wasn't feeling like doing anything else. I was tired and sore. I wanted time to do some fun stuff too, without having to worry about when to fit in another hour of exercise. I thought I'd do it on Sunday, but didn't get time. I came home in the afternoon, and by the time I unloaded the car (did some Christmas shopping this weekend!), then went to get groceries and my dogs, got home and unloaded the car again... It was already after 7:00.  Sure I could've left earlier (but honestly, I didn't want to!) to come home, or I could've worked out after I got home, before I got groceries and such, but I just didn't feel like it.  I also had to unpack all of those shopping bags and try to organize some of the gifts. Getting that stuff done (and the bags off of my floor!), plus a little cleaning was my priority. Sometimes I just need a day to not worry so much about working out and be able to focus on other things. This is especially true when I have a busy weekend or I am away from home.

So... My new plan...

1. Long runs only on long run days. If I feel up to doing something in the evening, fine - but it's not required.
2. If I don't do those workouts, I'm not obligated to do them on Sunday. Sunday is my rest day.  If I have the time and decide that I want to workout, I'll do those workouts as a Sunday bonus.
3. Weekly workouts will continue as scheduled.
**The exception to that will be this Thursday when I do a non-routine long run in the morning. I may or may not workout in the afternoon.

That's it... Not many changes. I'm being a bit more lenient with myself because of the long runs. As I've increased my run duration, I've realized that my body might not be ready for those extra workouts. I guess that's all I've changed; the workout plan for long run days. I also happen to think it's important to have a rest day, so instead of stressing about getting something done from Saturday, I'm not worrying about it. Stress isn't good. Sometimes we all need a rest day. I had originally scheduled a rest day, so this isn't really a change.. This is just me actually following my plan.

I'll admit this week is not off to a good start. I was supposed to get up this morning and do part of my workout, but I didn't. I had planned on it; set my alarm for 5:30 and everything.  However, I did not sleep well last night. It took me a while to fall asleep and then I had trouble staying asleep. I think I slept the best the last two hours before the alarm went off. I opted to hit snooze several times and stay in bed until I had to get up. I don't think I slept well (all those pesky alarm clock interruptions!) during that time, but I was able to at least doze a little. I suppose a little extra rest is better than none.  Anyway, so thanks to not sleeping well I was not in the mood to get up and work out. I wasn't in the mood for much of anything and was pretty cranky when I got up!

That means that tonight I'm in for about two hours of working out, which I don't mind. It's a nice way to spend the evening, although with the Holiday coming up I do have some other things that I could be doing. I could start packing (leaving for my parents' Wednesday after work)....But I feel like I just unpacked. I don't even have everything put away yet!

The long weekend will be pretty eventful. I know that I'll be getting up to do at least part of my workout the next two mornings. My workout for Wednesday is all planned for the morning anyway. I've planned on going to my parents' for the last couple weeks, so I didn't schedule anything for the evening. I currently have two workouts planned for Thursday, but as I noted a few paragraphs ago, I'm running in the morning so if I don't do the afternoon/evening workouts, I'm not too worried. 

The rest of the weekend is kind of up in the air. I'm not sure exactly what is happening, or when, which is kind of nice. My Mom's birthday is on Saturday so I know we'll go out for dinner. I know I'll run in the morning and workout again at some point. My Friday workouts will be done whenever I can get to them; possibly another longer block of working out rather than two workouts but that's okay!

I'd like to have some time at least on Sunday to get some things done around the house.  I'm honestly looking forward to the following weekend...There is nothing planned and I can spend a Friday night at home, work out on Saturday, clean, do laundry, and whatever else my heart desires. Maybe I'll finally paint, and redecorate, the bathroom (if for some reason I don't find time this weekend!).  I love everything that I do; I love being busy and spending time with loved ones and friends. BUT sometimes... I just want to be at home, in my element, doing what I want to.... Yes, a whole weekend of that would be amazing!!

In other news... I lost a few pounds this week! That basically puts me back to where I was three weeks ago since I had a gain two weeks ago.  Hopefully I'm on the right track and my weight will continue to go down. I won't be pleased if it goes up since I've been working so hard!

I weighed-in on Friday morning again last week, instead of Saturday. I'm glad I did so that I had a weight to record for the week! I was planning to weigh again on Saturday but forgot to pack my scale. I don't like to use different scales because of the potential for inaccuracy. I also forgot to do my measurements  (this is only the third week) or check my body fat, which I should have done because of the change in pounds. 

I will do all of that this Saturday morning, before I run! Even if I don't have my scale, I'll use another one. I know that one of the scales at my parents' weighs me about three pounds heavier than my scale. I often wonder which is accurate, but for my sake it doesn't really matter. I'm calculating my weight based on the scale I've been using for a while... Whether it's accurate to other scales or not. Hopefully I'll remember my scale so that I don't  have to worry about it!

I suppose it's about time to get to that two hour workout block. I say two hours but it's really not that long.  I have one DVD program that includes a 45 minute and a 10 minute workout, and another that's a 41 minute and a 10 minute workout. I'll only be working out for 106 minutes, which is clearly NOT two hours. At any rate, that's close enough. Who knows... I'm in a running mood, so maybe I'll run for 15 minutes - just because. Or bike. Or nothing because I'll most likely be too tired to do either!
I'm pretty happy with my workout schedule for the week. I'm not as worried about what I'll be eating and how many calories that will be, or whether it will cause my weight some havoc.  I also know that I don't eat a lot in one sitting. I never have; even before I lost weight I'd get full fairly fast.  The problem then was eating two hours later when I wasn't stuffed anymore.  I will definitely not be doing that!

My plan, other than exercise, will be to eat the things that I want, but in moderation... Except for things like lettuce salad (will watch my dressing intake!), and fruits or veggies that haven't been jazzed up with all sorts of unhealthy things.  Let's face it... Green beans are healthy. Green bean casserole? Not so much. I'll be filling up on the things that are fresh and raw (I'm sooo hoping for a good lettuce salad and a veggie or fruit tray!) and eating the other things in moderation. My usual rule is one portion of the meat (in this case, probably turkey), either one scoop or a half scoop (depending on the size of the spoon!) of things like casseroles, mashed potatoes, stuffing... And one small piece of dessert.

Alcoholic beverages in moderation. This will probably be the bigger issue for me - more than the food! I will focus on having fewer beverages than normal, and will base how many classes of wine on what I burn (as well as other calories consumed).  Hey, a girl's gotta make sure that some wine will fit into the plan!! Well, this girl does anyway!

I'll continue tracking, as usual, this weekend.  I think that it's more important to track what you eat during holidays. I know that I cook a different way (lighter) than my family.  It's really important for me to be accurate with my tracking because the light version of a dish isn't the same as the regular version. If you want to stay on track throughout the holidays, be sure to be diligent about tracking what you're taking in as well as what you're burning!!

I'm not sure how my updates will be this week, with it being Thanksgiving and me being busy, but I'll update as much as possible! I know I'll at least have time to post tomorrow, and most likely Wednesday.  I hope to find time to at least post a quick race re-cap on Thursday (hmmm...if someone goes with me, like my Dad, and drives then I can do it in the car on the way home). After Thursday though, I'm not sure when I will post! It may not be until next week.

Happy Monday!

XOXO

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Seven Eleven

No. I am not posting about the convenience store. I'm referring to my workout today. Which, by the way, wore me out so I did not do my second workout... Maybe tomorrow. By the time I was done with the run, more exercise wasn't a fun idea. I'm thinking that on long run days, long runs are about all I will be doing. I will either skip the other workouts or move them to Sunday.

Today my long run was scheduled to be six miles. I was on a 2.25 mile track so I ended at 6.75 instead. By the time I did a cool down walk I ended at just over seven miles.

This was my longest outdoor run so far. Actually it was probably my longest run period. I ran the majority of it but did take a few short walk breaks when I needed them.

Yay for small victories!

That was just the first. The second was my time. I did the first two laps at 11 minute miles. Not bad! My speed is definitely improving. I did not run it quite as fast as I did the last 5K, but it was about a 15 second difference (slower today). I didn't think that was too bad considering by the end of lap two I had run farther than during that last 5K. I was able to do a longer distance just a little slower. I'm happy with that.

Just past the halfway point in the third lap, I was definitely getting tired. It was around that time that I slowed down, and also walked a little more. At one point I walked slower than my walking pace (hey, a girl's gotta talk for a few minutes now and then!). Had I not walked and talked, I would have finished that last lap a kittle faster; closer to my times from the first two laps. It took me two minutes longer to finish that lap, so I'm sure slowing down had something to do with that.

Oh well... By the time I'd passed the five mike point, which is the distance of my run on Thanksgiving. I was pretty happy with my time and I honestly had to stop myself from doing another lap at the end. I did about an extra half mile of just walking, so that I could cool down before leaving. It was obvious that I walked that in cool down mode because that plus the walk back to the car (not that far) took me ten minutes. It took me that entire time to get my heart rate down out if fitness mode to the fat burning (slower heart rate) zone.

I was tired as I ran (and walked) but I wasn't too exhausted. When I did my cool down walk, I was actually to the point where I could have continued. I'm pretty happy about that! This means that my endurance is improving, which is a good thing since I have a half marathon coming up in just over three months!

I did just over half of a half marathon today and did well. Tired? Of course. Exhausted? Nope. Based on my time today, if I stick to that I will finish the half marathon in less than three hours (my goal). Actually it will be about 2.5 hours. This is at a comfortable pace for me.

Obviously if I push harder and try to go faster I'll tire and will have more difficulty. For my training I will focus on consistency at my current pace rather than trying to improve my time (although that would be great!).

There will be a lot of walkers to deal with, as well as characters to pose with, at the half marathon. I am not going to change my goal based on my faster time. I'm still planning on about three hours as a goal because of the walkers and photo ops.

Although it was a successful day, I was a little annoyed. The website and sign at the park where I ran advertise a 2.5 mile perimeter trail. One marker at the starting point of the trail states that it is mile zero of 2.2. I mapped it out and the path is 2.25 miles around. I'm not sure if the people noting the mileage on the website and big sign realize it, but 2.25 and 2.5 miles are not the same!

This is especially true when you're monitoring your time. Believe me that time can add up! I'll admit that when I thought the route was 2.5 miles, I felt kinda like a badass. I thought that I was doing 10 minute miles! It's a little obnoxious to realize that you have not, in fact, established a new, faster mile time!

I'm happy though... With my time, performance, and the workout in general. I burned over 1000 calories today in one workout; for just over an hour. Usually to come close to that (in the 900s) I have to workout for two hours.

Over seven miles and eleven minute miles? Not a bad day! I'll take it!!

Well... It's bedtime. Fresh air (it was so nice out - I got a sunburn in November!!) and a workout should make me sleep well.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

XOXO

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Workout = Energy

I was reading one of those cute little motivational picture post things on facebook last night and thought about how completly true it was.  I hear a lot of people say "I'm too tired to workout."  You know what? Me too, sometimes. There are days I feel like I'd rather nap. Instead, I push myself to workout. I get done and.... I have more energy! I think that by working out, I have more energy in my daily life too.  Your body needs that movement! It keeps you going.

Working out also makes me tired.  Last night, after two hours of working out, I was ready to crash.  I slept well though! I'm tired this afternoon too! I got up this morning and did part of my workout. I learned that in order to do a long workout, I'm going to have to get up around 5:30. The dogs are adament about getting up when I do, so i's not just a matter of me getting ready to workout. I have to let them out, get their food and water ready, then I have to get ready for a workout, and then let them back in.  I like to give them a little time outside, so sometimes this entire process can take 20 minutes, usually around 15.  This puts me that much later starting out. Uh, not to mention I like to hit snooze at least once before I get up.

This morning the alarm went off at 5:45. I got out of bed at 6:00. I didn't start my workout until around 6:20. I'm pretty sure that the alarm is going to have to start going off at 5:30 so I can get up by 5:45 and be ready to roll by 6; 6:05 at the latest.  I'm really going to need to start going to bed earlier than normal. I don't watch much on TV as it is, and with my workouts split between morning and evening, I won't be working out as late... SOOOO I guess it's not that big of a deal. I guess.

Anyway. Energy. I had lots of it this morning. It allowed me to exercise my mouth a little more... And ohhh was I animated with my chatting. I was talking with my hands, and fast, by 10 this morning! That's rare for me. I am usually kinda quiet in the morning hours.

I was pretty tired out this afternoon but did the second half of my workout because well... I had to! As usual it felt amazing!! I'm pretty tired now though. I'm planning on a bath to soothe these sore muscles an the some relaxation. Sounds like a good evening to me!

I'm posting a lot about working out lately. I think I need some new topics. Hmmm... Any ideas or requests?

I'm ready to start this long weekend!! I will, of course, start with a workout tomorrow morning. Later in the day I'm off I see my plastic surgeon for my six month check up. Six months! Already?! I'm excited to see what he has to say and see what the plan will be!

Have a fantastic weekend!

XOXO

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Wednesday!

I really have no idea why the fact that it is Wednesday seems so exciting; or at least exciting enough to title a post. I think it's really that I have not come up with anything more creative at this point in time. Oh well... Some days it's just not there (the post titling creativity, I mean).

I'm not doing very well in getting up to workout this week. Monday I wasn't feeling well, so I'm okay with that. Yesterday, I still wasn't feeling well but I can't help but wonder if I probably could've done it, and having been sick was a good excuse to stay in bed a little longer. That and I was tired and cold... See? Good excuses! Although, they're just that. Excuses. I did make up my workout minutes in the evening, so instead of having two shorter workouts, I had one longer one (almost two hours).

I actually liked it. I didn't mind giving up two hours of my evening to workout. I certainly enjoyed that extra time in bed in the morning.

The same thing happened today. Only today I feel better; didn't feel sick at all this morning. I'm pretty much back to normal. The reason (excuse) I didn't get up this morning? I was tired.  I had a hard time falling asleep last night because I was a little riled up (thanks in part to an intense college basketball game; thanks in part to... my own sensitivity and emotions). When I get all riled up I can't fall asleep very easily. Then I had trouble staying asleep, thanks to bed partners stealing, and laying on, the comforter causing me to not be well covered, which meant that I got cold.  I'd wake up and try to steal blankets back and rearrange. I don't do well with interrupted sleep. I do not feel very well rested when this happens, which is most likely why I felt too tired to get up and workout for an hour (or even half an hour).

This evening I'll be doing my morning workout as well as my evening workout. I have 90 minutes scheduled (TF, BBL, and RB - all working on some form of toning). I wear my heart rate monitor for all exercises. I know that some don't agree that it should be worn/calories should be counted during non-cardio work, but my philosophy is that if I am up and moving, doing something out of my normal routine  -- it should count!! My muscles are working to burn calories, right? Right!  Anyway, because of all the toning I do not expect a huge burn, but I'll be happy with a small one today. After logging the day's food, I am at 1311, so even a light burn will be okay.

Here's my dilemma...Well, it's not really a dilemma more of a decision.  I'm considering adding on 30 minutes of time to my workout, by running today. This is not a run day. However, I missed my Saturday run, so I did three miles yesterday.  I'm trying to decide if I should stick to my schedule or make it up so I have the appropriate number of runs done. At three miles, it probably doesn't matter a whole lot. It's not like I missed a long run. If I make it up, I'll be running three days in a row (plus other exercises). I'm busy again this weekend, and have a six mile run to do on Saturday.  I have to look at my schedule but I may opt to do that on Friday morning (making it four days in a row of running, and then off for three before my next run on Tuesday).  I don't like that arrangement though. I don't like having four days off (although after that big of a break, my run yesterday was great!) or running four in a row.

I will also have to figure out where to fit in my other Saturday workouts. I'm not so worried about Friday's workouts, because I can get up and do them in the morning. I have a doctor appointment that afternoon and then am headed off on another adventure, so it will be necessary to do it in the morning (no excuses!). Sometimes I work better under pressure like that. If I know it's the only time I have to do it, I'll get up and do it. Anyway, both running and my DVD workouts may not fit in on Saturday (yes, I take my workouts with me when I go, if I can find a way to do them), which means I'll be trying to squeeze them in Sunday evening (which always seems to not work).

I really don't like all of this rearranging. Of course, that's how life is sometimes. If I didn't rearrange, that would mean that I would be home all the time. I wouldn't go away to see loved ones or take fun little road trips. I'd always be home and I'd always be working out. In all honesty, I did this at first. Of course, when you initiate a lifestyle change in the middle of the winter (and are not a winter driver) it's much easier to stay home and make sure you do your workouts. I was also not working out as much at that time, so it was easier to fit them in!

I loved being able to live so healthy and not worry about how to make sure I fit exercise into my life. I also missed out on some things when I did. I'd often turn down invitations from friends for dinners or nights out because I didn't want to eat or drink certain things. In order to live healthy, my social life suffered a bit.  For a while I let the healthy living slack off because of frequent trips. I'd be healthy all week and then not workout on my weekends away. I'd also eat out, sometimes unhealthy (hello, Baskin Robbins kick of 2011). In more recent times I've achieved a better balance when it comes to that. I will take my laptop and DVDs on vacations, even mini vacations. I find hotels with fitness centers and plan on doing a lot of extra walking.  I eat as healthy as I can.

I pretty much failed at this last weekend since I did not get to do my Saturday workouts. Of course I switched my rest day so that I could. I did not know that I would get the stomach flu on Sunday. I will not let myself fail at it this weekend.  I will figure out a schedule tonight and make sure that I'll get those workouts done, no matter what it takes. If nothing else, I'm dedicated to this new fitness schedule.  I realize that situations arise that I cannot change (like missing a workout because I was sick), and I'll accept those when they happen. I will not allow excuses to change my plans. If plans change, I'll figure something out to fix them.  I think that a lot of this new exercise scheduling plan will require some rearranging and lots of changes, but that's okay. I can figure out how to make it happen!!!

I made a goal a couple weeks ago to lose 10 pounds by the end of the year.  When I weighed-in last Friday (a day early) I had not lost any weight from the previous week. UGH! Although, I suspect that it's possible that not losing was from all the increased work I was doing to my muscles (you do retain some water when you work on building muscle). I did weigh-in on Monday since my schedule was already off and I was down two pounds from Friday (probably something to do with being sick!). Anyway, as of then I had 10 pounds to lose (my loss weight was from before I had a hormonal weight gain a few weeks ago).... So really as of two weeks ago I had 12 pounds to lose.

I have only about seven-and-a-half weeks to lose 10 pounds. YIKES!!! I was hoping for a pound loss a week, which means I will not lose another 10 pounds by then. I will have to have about a pound and a half per week in order to do that. I haven't had a rate of loss like that in a LONG time. I'm afraid that I won't reach this goal.

Having the holidays thrown in makes me afraid of having reaching that goal. I guess that means I will just have to be super diligent and make sure to get those workouts done. I'm not generally one of those people who eats like a crazy person though, so I'm not all that worried... Especially considering I'm running give miles on Thanksgiving morning. And fitting another workout in at some point that day. Watching my portions, being healthy, tracking everything, and making sure I do those workouts is really going to be important in the next seven weeks.

I wonder... So what? So what if I don't lose ten pounds? I'll continue to work toward that goal, but what happens if I don't reach it? Nothing...Other than I just won't 10 pounds. Although that's my goal, I think I need to focus on some other goals too; goals that are not weight-related. I am going to focus on making sure I lose inches. I really don't have a goal as to how many inches, because at this point I don't know what is realistic and what is not. I just know that I have a goal to lose inches, which I should be able to achieve through this new workout program.  The other part will be completing my workouts. Unless something major (like getting sick) happens, I will complete them. I'll find a way. 

So... My goals for the rest of the year are:

1. Lose 10 pounds.
2. Lose inches (at least 2?).
3. Complete workouts.

Although I'm afraid of goal number one, I'm confident that I can achieve goals two and three!! If I don't reach the full 10 pounds, I'll be happy with a smaller loss.... Even if it's only five!

Do you have goals for the rest of the year?  If not, you should consider setting some.... They can help you stay on-track during the holidays! Whatever you need to work on could be a goal. Maybe your exercise is lacking... Make a goal to workout more.  If you're working out only three days and used to work out six,  make a goal to workout five days a week! If you don't drink enough water, make a goal to drink your eight eight-ounce portions a day. Eating too many sweets? Make a goal to allow yourself ONE sweet treat after you complete an intense cardio workout.

Think of what you need to accomplish and make some goals accordingly... This will help you maintain or keep striving for good health.  It is the season of giving - it's okay to give yourself a gift too, especially when it's the gift of health!

Happy Mid-Week!

XOXO

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Quick update...

I ran, then did RB, then BBL, and finally TF. I am sooo glad I waited to do TF at the end. Stretch 40 was 42 minutes of yoga! Yowza!! My poor muscles! 20 minutes of BBL ab work was easier than that.

I am not a huge fan of yoga.... But it so feels good (now)!

I was also super relaxed when I finished it so doing anything else would have been awful. I could go to bed right now!!

I also had a pre-workout snack so I scratched the sweet potato from the dinner menu. I burned enough to eat that (and then some!) but am not all that hungry.


XOXO

Work it Out... And Dinner.

I decided to try a workout yesterday despite not feeling my best. I'm glad I did! I cut out the biking that I had originally scheduled and just did TF and BBL, working out for about an hour. I kept it pretty low impact with TF and just didn't put as much energy into it as I usually would've. I also skipped some of the higher intensity things like jumping. So far? I think I'm going to like TF! It was my first workout and it took a bit to get into some of the moves. Like Chalene says, as long as you're moving and trying - that's what matters, not perfection!  I'll get better with practice, I am sure.

I am still not quite back to normal, but am feeling much better than I did yesterday. And about a hundred times better than Sunday, if that's possible. I was pretty tired this morning so I did not get up to run. Now I have to do that this afternoon. Along with a TF workout (just stretching), RB, and BBL workouts. Luckily the last two are going to be fairly short. One is only 10 minutes and the other must be about 25 minutes. Combine that with 30 minutes of running and 40 minutes of stretching, and I'll be working for 105 minutes this evening.  That's an hour and 45 minutes for anyone trying to calculate quickly.

I know that I'll start with my run, get it out of the way. Then I think I'll do the stretching DVD, just to get a little bit of a recovery period before the other two workouts. I'm not sure what the RB workout will entail since I haven't done that one before but it hasn't been all that intense so far, so I think I'll be fine.

BBL is just a ten minute ab video. It will be delightfully painful. Honestly, I've never wanted ten minutes to pass so quickly before. At least from what I remember from doing it the first time. I don't mind (actually like) ab work, but not all at once like that. I like to work one part, go to another, then back, or on to another.  My perfect workout would be squats, crunches, bicep curls, rows, lunges, bicycle crunches, and then back to arms... See? I like to cycle around the body. Too much at one time makes my muscles get really sore. Maybe that's the point? I enjoy a little break in between working groups. DVDs don't agree with this, so I suffer.

Okay, maybe it's not so much suffering but by the end of 10 minutes, I'm ready to be done. It's amazing the pain that Leandro can inflict within a short amount of time.  I guess that just means my abs are working, and need to be worked. Obviously if I were used to the exercises, they wouldn't hurt.

Part of me thinks I should save the 40 minutes of stretching for the end of it all, because stretching is probably best done at the end. However, the RB workout should include a cool down, as most do. BBL is just ab exercises so my heart rate won't exactly be soaring. From what I remember, most (if not all) of the exercises will be done on the ground.  Who knows what I'll do. I'll see how I feel after my run. I may just decide to go on and do the RB workout, then BBL, and stretch last. I suppose the order in which I do it doesn't matter much (but running definitely needs to be first!), just as long as I do it!

I thought about running for an hour since I missed my Saturday run....But that will bring my time to over two hours and I am honestly ready for dinner NOW! It's not that I'm hungry. It just sounds really good and I want to eat. I'd rather not put it off for another half an hour. I've been obsessed with the thought of dinner since I was home at lunch and decided what I want to eat. I'm not usually one to become so focused on food, but tonight's dinner sounds really yummy!

I plan on having some baked, seasoned tilapia, with some quinoa on the side, and probably some baked, seasoned sweet potato chunks (fries; whatever you want to call them). This will take a bit of time to prepare, thanks to the potatoes. Both quinoa and fish are fairly fast cooking, so I'll probably season the potatoes and put them in the oven to cook while I shower. I'm not sure what that dinner sounds soooo good tonight, but it does!

Depending on how many calories I burn, I may add a salad. I expect over 300 with the run, so it'll really depend on what I burn for the rest of the workout. I do not like to "eat back" what I burn, or at least not all of it. Sometimes I eat some back. Like today, I'll basically eat back what I burn off in my run. So whatever I burn in the other workouts will be the extra that I will not eat.

Does that philosophy confuse anyone else? I've heard conflicting info on it, so basically I do what I want. Some say eat back all of what you burn, which I don't quite understand because if you're working to burn it why would you eat it all back? Others say do not eat back what you burn. My plan is to stay between 1200 and 1500 calories. If I don't workout, I keep it closer to 1200. If I do workout, then I'll eat around 1500 (because the body DOES need the extra energy). Sometimes if I burn a whole lot more, then I'll eat even more. It really just depends on the workout and what I'm burning. Since I desire weight loss I should probably pay more attention to that, but every time I do the math I find that I should be eating a lot more than I do now -- for loss!!! I'm thinking that those formulas are for people who are just starting out. I'm pretty sure if I increase, rather than decrease, my caloric intake, I am going to gain weight.  At least, that seems like the logical idea!!

Whatever I do, I most definitely need a good burn tonight. After adding up all of my intake, I'm already 300 calories over.... I guess in planning I thought that if I workout for almost two hours, I'll more than likely burn quite a bit. I hope so anyway!! I always worry when I plan a higher calorie day based on length of workouts that I'll be way off. Hopefully not... I'd like to end the day with a surplus (even a small one) of calories rather than break even, which to me seems to defeat the purpose of working out (as stated earlier...guess I don't need to get off of that tangent - AGAIN).

Anyway....Let's hope the workout is not so low intensity that I don't burn much. If so, I might be adding that extra 30 minutes of running on after everything else is done.

I guess I better get started, because whether I need to burn more or not - it's going to be a while!

Hope you've had a healthy day!

XOXO

Monday, November 12, 2012

Good Weekend and Feeling Sick

I last wrote on Thursday which seems so long ago now... Let's see...

I wrote pre-maturely on Thursday and my plans for Friday changed. I was unable to do the things I wanted to do and left later than I had planned.  I guess that's what I get for writing early!! I think that's part of why I don't like planning sometimes, because plans can change so easily. Oh well... Life goes on, and part of a longer weekend is better than none at all!

I did get up and workout on Friday morning, at my usual early time. I decided that even if I couldn't enjoy the day like I had planned, I knew I still needed to workout. I did my planned workout, and also a run, which was made up from Thursday night.

Saturday ended up being a complete rest day. I took workout clothes with me, thinking maybe I'd get up early to do my Saturday run, but I didn't sleep well Friday night and thought I'd rather sleep a little longer. I did set my alarm early, but when it went off I was too tired, so I quickly shut if off and enjoyed another hour of sleep until it was time to actually get up.

Saturday was the Michigan-Northwestern game - what a game!! WOW! There were ups and downs, and it was super close, with Michigan finally winning in overtime.  It was very, very intense (following a very intense Kentucky basketball game on Friday evening), but a lot of fun.  I honestly did not think that they would win, but somehow with 20-some seconds left they made a couple plays, tied, and sent the game into OT.

We tailgated before, and after the game for a while (to allow traffic to clear out) before heading home. By the time we stopped for dinner and got home, it was late and I was pretty tired!!

My eating was pretty good this weekend, despite meals out and tailgating.  We ate out Friday and Saturday nights. That's more sodium than I like in my diet, but I was hungry and didn't want to skip meals.  I hadn't eaten much during the day Friday so I definitely needed to eat.  I had a breakfast burrito - two egg whites, one egg, and fat-free cheese, in a low carb tortilla, coffee, and later a skinny latte at Starbucks. Dinner was half a burger and some fries. With my workout in the morning, I burned quite a few calories so I ended the day with a surplus.  I'm sure the shopping we did helped me burn a few extra too - mostly just from walking, but a little extra is a little extra!

I thought that tailgating on Saturday might be a disaster but it wasn't.  I had been having leg cramps so I grabbed a banana (potassium!) and a mini muffin at the hotel, which I had with some coffee. While tailgating and then at the game I had a bagel (asaigo cheese from Panera...Yuuuuummmmy), one of the cupcakes I had made, a brat, and a handful of popcorn. When we stopped on the way home I had some chicken wings for dinner. I may have enjoyed a Bloody Mary or two at some point during the day. I really didn't get any exercise...With no workout and sitting to watch a game, and then sitting in the car, the walking to/from the stadium and in the tailgating area really didn't do much of anything...  I didn't walk anymore than usual (probably less!) so there was no benefit from that.

My plan for Sunday was to plan on doing my Saturday workout.  That didn't happen. I started vomiting early on Sunday morning and felt horrible for the rest of the day. A family friend, my Dad, and some other people that I know have all recently had the same thing...Some nasty stomach flu has been going around. My Dad came down with it Saturday morning and yesterday he said he was feeling a little better but not 100%.  I spent the day laying around, doing pretty much nothing.  I must have been really worn out because I kept sleeping off and on, which seemed to increase over the day. I'd watch TV for a little bit and then fall asleep for a while, then I'd wake up for a few and fall asleep... I just could not stay awake.

I couldn't even watch my beloved Bears last night. The moments I saw were either decent or completely terrible.  I went to bed during half-time, which I'm glad I did. It sounds like they continued to play horribly. Had it been a good game I may have tried to push myself to stay awake but it was horrible. Although, good game or not I may not have been able to stay awake. I wasn't even really into watching the game. For me to not be interested in something I enjoy is a pretty big thing!

Of course, yesterday I was feeling too sick to eat so perhaps that's what saved me from the weekend sodium retention I thought would hit. I did attempt to eat something small in the afternoon but that didn't go so well.  I managed to sip some water throughout the day but that's about it.

I'm feeling a little better today, but definitely not back to normal yet.  My stomach has been hurting and I'm still tired. I haven't had any nausea, hot/cold flashes (awful yesterday!), and my body isn't quite as achy as it was, so that's good. My Dad called earlier and said that he's just starting to feel better today (he got it on Saturday) and said to plan on it taking about three days to feel better. Today would be day two. I'm hoping that I'll be feeling pretty much back to normal tomorrow.

In addition to this "flu" I managed to develop a rash sometime during he night. Just on my chest. I haven't noticed any splotchy red bumpy areas anywhere else.  Odd.  I haven't changed soaps, detergents, or anything else so I'm not quite sure what caused it. If I had, I'd have a rash other places too. I wore a new scarf, over a v-neck shirt, on Saturday but I would think that the rash would've shown up before this morning. I'd also think that I'd have a rash on my neck too, if it were from that.

Oh!! I just felt my neck, and there are bumps there too.  Maybe it is from the scarf! I still don't know why it would've taken so long to show up though.

Anyway... I have been putting some Aveeno cortisone cream on it, that I bought after surgery for itching. It's helping it to not itch (I think... I'm no sure if it has really itched at all).  Oddly, I feel sore on my chest area...Like I'm bruised or something. I haven't injured myself or done anything that would cause bruising, so I'm guessing that the tenderness goes along with the rash. It's pretty much in the same area. The rash isn't something that would cause a problem with a workout or anything else.

I'm undecided about a workout today. I did not get up to do an early workout like I had scheduled this morning. I just didn't feel up to getting up early... I was still so tired and not feeling so great! Part of me wants to workout and part does not.  I feel like I could probably handle it, but then feel that I should probably rest and just wait until tomorrow. And when I really think about it, just the thought of doing any of it is exhausting!

If I workout, it's not a running day, so I won't be doing anything super intense... I don't think. It is the first day of TurboFire today, but it's the very first DVD. I'm sure a lot of it will be learning how to do things and won't be as intense. TurboFire in general is supposed to be an intense workout, but I can't imagine the very first workout being too much. I guess I can always start it and if it seems like it's too much, I can wait. 

I really don't like skipping workouts but I know that sometimes I need to...Like when I'm not feeling well. I struggled to make it through work today (just because I was tired and wanted to be at home, on the couch). I don't like to call-in to work unless I'm really, really sick. If I can handle a fairly mild day, then I usually go in. That's what I did today...I didn't have a whole lot going on, so I thought I'd stick it out. I was tempted to stay home at lunch time but I will be off this Friday so I didn't want to miss a lot of today too. I suppose had I called-in I could've had that long weekend after all....But that's definitely not the type of long weekend I would want!!

I suppose I should get off the comfy couch and at least attempt to do some kind of workout. It won't be intense, and I'll follow any modifications given, just because I'm not feeling well. Normally I skip modifications (unless for some reason I cannot physically do something), but today I'll do them.  I'm not expecting a huge calorie burn with this workout, but maybe getting up and moving around a little will help.  We'll see how I feel after I start some laundry and change... That might be enough to tire me out on its own (but I doubt it).

Hope your week is off to a great start!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Ready for the Weekend!

I am taking tomorrow off to have a bit of a long (but busy) weekend. I'm taking a little road trip to see a Big Ten game - should be a fun time!  I decided that I will be adding my Saturday workouts to Friday morning and Sunday (time to be determined, but probably in the evening). I spoke with my co-worker and judging from the time it'll take to get from the hotel to the stadium, even a short run in the morning would be hard to do. I mean, it's Saturday, I'd like to sleep in at least a little bit (meaning that it'll be maybe a half hour later than normal!). I'd actually have to get up earlier than normal to do a run. I decided that for me, making Saturday a rest day and working out Sunday sounded like a better idea.  I just have a DVD workout to do on Sunday, so that won't be bad. I'm bumping my training run to tomorrow morning, which will be two days in a row, but at least I know I'll get it done. All I had scheduled was a 45 minute DVD workout, so another 30 minutes added to the morning won't be that big of a deal!

I'm happy I have that all figured out!!

Tonight I'll be getting ready for the weekend - after I workout of course.  I did not get up this morning to do my training run so I'll be doing that before I do my hour DVD workout today.  An hour and a half isn't so bad all at once, it's just nice when it's broken up. I was so tired this morning though! I got up, then by the time I got ready, I was cutting it close on time. I wanted to have enough time to dry and straigthen my hair this morning because I got it cut yesterday... Soooo I wanted it to look cute, not all wavy like usual.  Anyway, so I'll be running then doing a DVD.  A 30 minute run isn't all that much.

After the workout, I'll make dinner and then pack a little.  We will be tailgating before, and maybe after, the game so I'm making some team or football (or both?) themed cupcakes. It'll just depend on how I want to decorate them when the time comes. Naturally I'll be baking them from scratch. I enjoy baking and just am not a fan of boxed mixes. I only use them if I absolutely have to! Anyway, so if I have the time to make three colors of frosting I'll do both. Otherwise I'll just do one.  Actually, to save time I may buy frosting (I don't like to do that either though!) for the football cakes, and make it for the others. We'll see.

I took all day tomorrow off but still plan to get up early.  I will have a little over an hour of working out to do before I get ready to leave. Then I have to take my dogs to my parents' and get an oil change, which hopefully will not take too long! I plan to be up early so that we can get moving. I'm on a time schedule so I HAVE to get up early to get that workout done!

Then it's mini-road trip time!!

I'm a little nervous about Saturday being a rest day. Given that I'll be tailgating I know I'll be eating some food that I don't usually eat. I'm sure we'll have dinner after the game/on the way home too. When I don't workout I try to eat around 1200 calories... I'm not so sure I'll be able to do so on Saturday. I guess it's one of those things I'll just have to live with though, right? I will be as good as possible, but let's face it football food and restaurants do not always mix well with low calorie diets! In addition to the cupcakes, I will be making a healthy snack to take with too! I'm not sure what yet... Something easy that I can throw together the night before or in the morning on the way from the hotel to the game (depending on whether or not the hotel has refrigerator - I forgot to ask). I will be consulting my good friend Pinterest this evening. I have a couple ideas, but sometimes I see a new idea that I want to try.

I suppose that should be about it for now. Given that yesterday's post was so long, I'm sure this is plenty.  I'm not sure how much I will post this weekend since I'll be busy, but I will try to at least post something tomorrow.... If not...

Until Monday...

XOXO

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

More on TurboFire and Thanks.

I managed to NOT start TurboFire last night. Amazingly, I stuck to my plan for the day! It was highly tempting but I had a headache, which I think was what saved me from it. After I did my DVD routines, I felt like I should've done more. I love that feeling... I burned over 600 calories, worked out twice yesterday, and wanted more!

Instead of starting TurboFire I had dinner, cleaned up the kitchen a little, and did a few other things around the house. Then I got down to business. I pulled everything out of the TurboFire box. I inspected it all, flipped through every piece of paper that came with it, and basically just immersed myself with TurboFire for a while. I read the books and learned about TurboFire. I also discovered some new recipes that looked pretty good. I'll have to flip through it again when I make out my grocery list for next week.

Side note, while we're on the topic of food/recipes: I discovered this recipe for a quinoa stuffing when I logged into Blogger and looked at my reading list. It looks pretty good! I'm not an onion fan, so I'd omit that. It looks like a great side dish for Thanksgiving, or anytime. There's also a suggestion to add turkey sausage to it, to make it a meal! YUM! I have quinoa at home so I'm going to have to make this next week - probably with the sausage. If it weren't for having appointments I'd be making it tonight!! That site also has a lot of Thanksgiving recipes, which I would recommend checking out... Especially if you're looking to make your Thanksgiving meal a little lighter!

Back to the orignial topic...

I revamped the workout schedule that I made last week. I added TurboFire workouts where I thought that they'd best fit. In adding TurboFire I'm going to have to get up a little earlier in the morning, and will have two-a-day workouts pretty much every day. I decided to leave Sunday as a complete rest day, instead of the Wednesday rest that's in the TurboFire plan. I'm going to try this and see how it goes. There are days where doing what I already had scheduled seemed like a lot. I may omit something on those days (mostly my long run days).  If I run eight miles, I'll likely burn over 800 calories. I probably do not need to add in extra workouts and burn even more. BUT we shall see. If I do them, then fabulous - I'll feel awesome! If I don't do them, I won't get angry with myself.

I will officially be starting TurboFire on Monday morning. I'm so excited!  I am pretty impressed with myself too. For someone who was stuck in a rut of doing the same exercises (running, walking, and a little biking) over and over again, I'm really shaking things up. I'll continue those exercises. Running will be limited to my training runs, three days a week. Biking is pretty much just thrown in whenever I decided that I needed an extra 30 minutes of some light cardio. I think I'll look forward to those days, since biking will the be activity I'll be doing the least. I thought I did pretty well adding BBL and RB to my agenda. NOW I'm adding another program!

I feel proud.  I don't think my routine has ever been this involved before.  I have always been good about walking and running. I've gone in streaks of adding various DVDs to my routine. If I set out to do something like the 30 Day Shred; I finished it. Other routines, without a time schedule, were just done whenever. I did well with Body Rock when I was doing that. But then I just fell out of the habit of it.  I'll probably get back into that later on... Maybe I'll add some of those in after I'm finished with my current programs. Or maybe I won't.

What matters right now is that I'm feeling good after just a short time doing this program. I'm not trying to push you into any one fitness routine or program. I'm just happy that my body feels like I've been working and it's making me feel good. The one thing I don't like is that I feel big. Not fat...Just big. I suppose that's a good thing though because that means I'm working hard.

Hopefully this routine will really benefit me. I'm hoping that the change in workouts will help me through my current weight loss plateau, and to reach my weight loss goal by the end of the year. I've been doing well with eating; staying in my calorie range and avoiding bad foods (so far) this week. It's all about portions and balance. I'm very serious and highly motivated to drop a few pounds.
that I've been doing since I made these changes is not weighing myself every day. 

Another thing I've been doing is not weighing myself daily.  I weighed in for my official weekly weigh-in on Saturday. I have not been on the scale since. I've not measured or checked my body fat (I mean really, WHO honestly believes those changes happen THAT fast!? Not me!). The scale is the big thing for me though. I have a habit of being (pretty much) a daily weigher. I like to know what I've done and what direction I'm headed.  If I'm gaining, I want to know so I can figure out what's going on. I don't want to wait an entire week and be surprised by what the scale says.  On the other hand, when it's a good surprise, it's nice to see it at one time rather than slowly!  I'm definitely proud of myself for staying off the scale. Not weighing for a few days may not sound like a lot to some, but for me, that's an accomplishment. I've tried, several times, to weigh only weekly and haven't done well with it. I have done weights no more than three times a week, but weekly (for more than a week) has been something I haven't done.  I am SUPER tempted to check my weight in the morning, but I don't.  I think that these morning workouts have helped with that. I'm too busy getting ready to do whatever it is that I'm going to do, to worry about the scale. Distraction is sometimes good!!

In addition to being excited to start TurboFire...I'm already anticipating getting ChaLean Extreme, but I most definitely need to be done with (at least) the RB and BBL program before I try to add something else. The TurboFire book has a hybrid schedule for TurboFire and ChaLean, so maybe at the beginning of the year, I'll add that in.

The BBL/RB program is set to go through the end of December. My current TurboFire schedule will last about that long too; going into the first of January. I'm starting with the TurboFire PREP schedule. When that's done, I'll start the 20 week TurboFire program... I just may start ChaLean at that time too. I'm not going to get that far ahead of myself.  I think that having eight weeks of workouts already scheduled is enough for right now. As the end time for what I'm doing now approaches, I'll see how I want to do my next schedule.

I'm very excited for these workouts as well as to see my results!!


On to the second part of this post (which is already a much longer post than I anticipated... Yay for lunch break and a few spare minutes here and there; before/between appointments)...

I'm doing this 30 Days of Thanks thing on facebook. Each day in November I update with what I'm thankful for. Honestly this is probably the majority of my facebooking these days... I go in streaks where I'm into it or I'm not. I'm not as into it now as usual...Anyway...

Generally these posts are things like family, my dogs, friends, a job, etc... Today I took a different approach and had a pretty decent response. I just wanted to share it here because one of my friends pointed out that it's "important."

Taken from my status:

Day 7: This one is a little different... Today I'm thankful for the people who don't know me, but judge me; the people who talk negatively and gossip about me; the people who try to drag me down; the people who always have something to say about me/my life whether their opinion is wanted or not. Why? These people give me a reason to be an even stronger person than I am. They remind me that I no longer let things like that beat me down. I hold my head high and realize that no matter the reason (often jealousy) SOMEONE will have SOMETHING to say. These people remind me of how far I've come....That I can accomplish more than I ever thought possible. These people make me want to work harder to be a better me, and to prove them wrong....Because usually they are!

The truth is that no matter what you do there's always going to be someone out there with something to say about you. I used to let things like that bother me. They bothered me so much that I'd get really upset and hold on to their nasty words for far too long.  It took me a long time to let those feelings go. Now if it happens I will defend myself or ignore it, depending on what's said or the situation. Most of the time it's better to just let it go.

What someone else says about you, based on gossip that they've heard, what they think, or what they see doesn't matter. It's not important. What matters most is how YOU feel about yourself; how you see yourself. After you, the thoughts of your family and friends are important...But they should never take over how you feel about yourself. Even the people close to you may say something that shakes you up. I think that hurts more than comments from strangers (or people who used to be in your life and now are determined to hurt you). I feel very lucky to have parents who have been nothing but supportive and encouraging of me throughout my life. I know that not everyone is so lucky and sometimes the very people who bring you down are those who you're closest to.

There's a reason someone is talking about you. You probably don't know what it is, but there is. Sometimes there's good gossip being spread about you. Unfortunately those positive words don't seem to go as far as the negative. They don't always stay with you as long as the negative. You have to learn to overcome the negativity. Sure, sometimes you'll react emotionally; that's normal.

I am most definitely not saying that I am immune to the negativity. It does still hurt, but I don't take it in the same way that I used to. Now I use it to motivate myself; to become stronger. If it weren't for the negative words of others, how would I have gotten to be who I am? My ability to handle hurt has helped to shape me into the individual I am today. I've accepted that people will always have a reason to say something. I honestly feel that many times it's some sort of jealousy, or a fear.

When I was fat, I heard the comments. Some were directed to my face and others were said behind my back.  They hurt me.  I didn't say "hey, jerk! I KNOW I'm fat." Instead I got so healthy food to binge on as I cried. It was never in front of them. Unless it was one of those situations where it was someone intentionally trying to hurt me. Then I'd react. Most of the time though I'd sit alone and binge until I felt sick. It was a secret that I hid.  It was a secret that I wish I never had. I wish I wouldn't have let the words and actions of others hurt me so badly; so deeply. But I did. Soon I began to believe them and felt even worse.

It wasn't until I was fed up and decided to change my lifestyle that I changed my attitude. It no longer mattered what someone else said. It was how I felt and what I believed about myself that mattered. It still is. 

The comments have changed because now there's something new for people to judge me on. 

I hear things about my "weird" (healthy!) eating habits. I try new things and I know people must roll their eyes at me. That's okay... It's my body and just because I choose to fill it with things that they don't doesn't mean anything.  Those are usually not mean-spirited comments though.... They're usually people just wondering what I must be thinking. Most of the time I laugh along and try to explain my healthy eating.

Sometimes I hear people say that I'm "crazy" because I like exercise so much. I suppose if liking to exercise and provide my body with benefits is crazy, then I am happy to accept that title! Bring on the crazy - I've got a workout to do!!

Then there's my appearance. WHY is it that appearances are what people seem to gossip about the most.

First, I've heard things about how I lost weight.... I've heard that I had weight loss surgery. I've heard that I developed anorexia or bulimia. I've heard that I've gone on some insane diet. Every now and then I've heard that I did it by improving my lifestyle and becoming healthy. Ding! That last one; that's the one.  Actually no, that's not it. Really an alien spaceship beamed me up, Scotty style, and put me through some weird experiments and sucked that weight right out of me. They replaced it with some alien technology and now I'm here to help them take over the world. That's just how ridiculous I feel like the other assumptions are.

 Also... if you want to know, JUST ASK.

 If I had used another method, I'd be open enough to discuss it. If I had an eating disorder, I'd hope that this blog would be about my journey to recovery. 

FYI.... People making jokes or statements about bodies based on eating disorders really annoys me. They're a serious disease, not something to joke about. Those jokes and comments hurt people who live with them even more.

Even worse than how I lost weight, now I am criticized for how I look. I've heard people say "you can stop now."  Um....I don't want to stop now. I'm healthy, but I'm not exactly where I want to be. I do not look sick. I am not sick.  I will stop when I have reached a weight/appearance that is right for ME. Thank you for your opinion though.

I've also received some very nasty comments about me from people who do not know me.  I can only speculate that this is based on my level of attractiveness.  Clearly I dress well and look good, so I must be a bitch (ugh, I cringed writing that but that's a word that was used...NOT one that I prefer to put in my posts!). Yes... I dress up to go to dinner at a local restaurant that doesn't require dressing up. I am not dressed for the opera or a ball. I look good though. I LIKE to wear dresses and heals! Doing my hair and make-up makes me feel good. In my opinion, it makes me look better.

I'm not trying to claim to be the most beautiful person in the world. I know I'm not. I'm also not that vain. I am, however, able to share how I feel about myself. After years of hiding because I thought I was ugly, I am going to come out and say "yes, I am an attractive person." There is nothing wrong with that. It doesn't mean that I am conceited.

It means that after years, I finally see myself for who I am (inside and out!). It means that I have self-confidence; that my self-esteem has dramatically improved. I do not walk around like Queen Sexy Bee. I don't tell others that they're ugly.  Confidence does not mean arrogant. It does not mean that I think I'm the best ever and no one else compares. My confidence is not about anyone else. It's about me and how I feel about myself.

I let people determine how I felt about myself way too much when I was obese. I'm not going to do that now that I'm not. What I look like doesn't matter. Someone will always find something negative to say about it. I am just thankful that I have learned to accept, and love, myself as I am. That's something more beautiful than how I look.

I realize that this got a little off-track from what I originally posted about being thankful, but I also felt that a little explanation should accompany it.

My point with all of that is that you should try your hardest to love yourself, no matter what people say. I know it's hard, but find a way to bash their negativity down with your positivity. Not externally... Please don't fight! I'm saying internally... Within you. Those negative people are not going to care what you think about what they said. I think that if you react to them, that will only fuel their fire. If you ignore them, keep smiling, and keep feeling good about your amazing self, they will either get bored or talk more. Let them talk because at the end of the day what they say isn't what matters... It's the person you are, how you act, and above all how you feel about yourself that truly matters.

Have an awesome day; full of self-love! YOU deserve it!

XOXO