Tuesday, August 4, 2015

SO BUSY! and headaches-Bonus race report!

your daily motivation!
When my sister was in town last week and when she was here I had something to do every night of the week. Last week was also my first week back at work and it was harder than I thought to get back in the swing of things. Every day is a struggle in energy levels. Getting enough sleep is the hardest part of course. I get to go into work later since there are no students to prepare for, so maybe it is time to try running in the morning. However, doing this next Tuesday when students report may be more difficult because I like to be at work at 6, but I'll give it a shot.

I have also had some trouble getting outside to run due to some pretty bad headaches. They are tension headaches from some knots in my neck and I think it is coming from having to stare at a computer and work at a desk more often-especially during these three weeks of training. It has been making me very tired and unable to move at times. It has been debilitating! Today, I actually used a tennis ball to try to roll out the knot in my neck and it seems to be working.

Saturday, I ran a race with my two best friends. My one friend's mom is an ovarian cancer survivor and signed us up for the OROC (Out Run Ovarian Cancer) 5K at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. This was my first race with someone I know and it was an AMAZING experience. They haven't been training as long as I have, so I ran the last mile myself, but cheering each other on and having someone to help you pass the time was awesome! They liked it so much, they signed me up for another 5k this Saturday where they could earn their first medal! I'm so excited!

we're so cute! :) 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

MIA as the school year begins

It has been over a week since I posted and I apologize for those who are following closely! "Summer Institute" (3 weeks of training before the school year for teachers) has begun, but I'm still trying to enjoy my summer, so I have been busy!!! I went back to work last Tuesday and have had something to do after work each one of those days. Those of you who know me personally know that I don't usually stay that busy on weeknights and it is exhausting to do so!

Last Wednesday was my first full day back at work, and I signed up for another 5K on that afternoon! That was most definitely not my brightest move - I was unbelievably exhausted that afternoon. However, I dragged my butt off the couch, got changed and made it to that race since I spent $23 to run, I really should go  because I was determined to run. I'm glad I went. Knowing before the race, that they only let 100 people register and it was going to be pretty small, I was intimidated. I figured everyone who knew about it ran miles upon miles upon miles, but I was wrong! I was one of the last 10 but not the last runner and there was a cookout afterwards. It was a TOUGH course. Nearly completely straight up for 1.5 miles and then down those hills for 1.5 miles. I walked uphill for like .5 of a mile so that I could really speed down those hills at the end. By doing that I ended up with a PR of 38:30! Only 30 seconds faster than last time, but I'll take it!
completely exhausted - could barely smile

I LOVE my new Fitbit Surge. It is actually super motivating to be able to see your distance and pace as you go. Keeps me totally on track while I run and feel it is way more accurate than my phone ever was. My only complaint is that when my phone receives text messages, the Surge doesn't always notify me of them. But that was an additional feature to me - not why I bought the watch. I don't use the heart rate yet as much as I thought I would. I really like seeing how many floors I climb each day (8 right now, with over 7,000 steps-it is good to be back at work! :) ) S Health, however, has not really impressed me. I think it needs a few more improvements and updates. It just doesn't work as effectively as it should.

I have been staying on track with eating, but I have most definitely NOT been getting enough sleep. Weight is not really coming off right now, but I'll keep working to try to get myself down to where I want to be (it should not be taking this long)! I have not been strength training as much as I should be right now. I just literally have zero time right now. Once my sister goes back to Georgia and I get back into the swing of things with work it should help - not quite adjusting to the early bedtimes again as well as I should!

Tonight I have my running group with No Boundaries in all this heat and humidity! Gotta keep hydrating!

Until next time-

Sunday, July 19, 2015

New Toys!

post-run on Friday...so humid!
What a humid and hot weekend it has been! In Ohio, we have barely had any hot days (only a few in early June) and so this 90 degree weekend with a lot of humidity has been hard! I'm not nearly as adapted as I should be and have even had to run in long-sleeves and long compression pants this summer! Lots of water this last few days to help with the heat.

Friday was a quick run/walk. It was extremely toasty and I walked a few minutes longer than I wanted to, but hey, it's important to just get out there, right?! I hope it's true what they say-running in the summer makes for a great fall runner.

Saturday was 3/1 (3 minutes running/1 minute walking) with my No Boundaries 5K group. I really enjoyed this run despite the heat and part of the trail by the river getting washed away by all the rain-I have lived by this river my whole life and have never seen that. It has really been a rainy summer!

Today I went to a festival near Cleveland and walked it for nearly two hours. Of course there was some stopping involved, but luckily I was so hot I couldn't eat! There was so much good food there put out by the amazing restaurants in the city. We did find a juice station - real fruit and fruit juice shaken up "with a show." It was absolutely delicious and refreshing!

I promised a review on S Health. I haven't used a whole lot on the app, and every day there is something new they suggest I add to it, but I'll tell you what I know so far. There are many great apps within S Health. I tried Coach by Cigna. It is an app where you choose your health goal and doctors take you through daily challenges to improve your health based on what they feel your highest need is after a short quiz (food, getting active, sleep, etc). It is a great idea in theory, but needs more to it. None of the programs really seemed to fit what I'm looking to do now.

S Health can track your food, water, and caffeine intake and if I wasn't already so invested with My Fitness Pal, I would use it. I think S Health needs to collaborate with more apps (like Fitbit and My Fitness Pal) so everything is in one place. They do work with Nike+.

While searching around the app, I found the Samsung play store and download a new circuit training app. Nike+ Training Club is great and I love it, but my sister (the trainer and coach) said that it is mostly leg work and she's right. Now I'm trying Skimble. Much more variety in your choices and many more exercises, plus the ability to create your own! There is a huge community attached to it (much like My Fitness Pal or Fitbit) and when I signed up many people commented on it (which was cool, yet creepy, there is a way to make your profile private). Many of the exercises are free, but to access the whole app, it is $6.99/month (still cheaper than the gym-I'll take it!)

I also received my Fitbit Surge in the mail yesterday, but haven't had a chance to run with it yet. I plan on doing that tomorrow, but I already love it! I'll update you on the watch later this week.

fitbit surge! also notice, i'm comfortable enough to wear jean shorts in public!
I start back at work on Tuesday, so I'm feeling a little blue that my summer is over, but happy because I think that will offer my structure back to my workout plan and my life. I have not been able to follow a training plan AT ALL this summer! I just get out there and do what I can, when I can. With school back in session and being at work, I should be able to better plan out my evenings (maybe even mornings?!) to fit in more runs and get back to training for a 10K! We'll see how it goes!

Until next time!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

I have an addiction to spending money on running

definitely didn't think I was capable of my mile time!
Before I get into what I spent money on today, let's first discuss how my No Boundaries 5K training group went. We all met at Fleet Feet in the half hour that it wasn't raining yesterday to do our halfway point 1 mile trial. When we began the program, I got an 11:43/mile pace, and my goal by the halfway point was 11:30/mile. When we got there, I actually brought my phone and headphones with me so that I could really pace this out for myself. I definitely ran the first lap too fast, but I just kept pushing and tried not to slow down too much (but also not throw up or fall over!) and I ended this time trial at 10:44 (of course I couldn't run just 1 second faster to make it exactly 1 minute faster).

Then, as we were leaving the group, one of the ladies I run with who I hadn't seen in awhile told me that I already look like I lost weight! She made sure to mention my bottom half and motioned from her boobs down, so that I was aware that my boobs are still ginormous (hahahaha). I was so surprised and flattered that I told her she was too sweet and thanked her. I was really caught off guard! Then I weighed myself this morning and I am down THREE POUNDS! What?! Three pounds in one week?! I know I earned it - I've been very carefully watching what I eat and not letting myself go over-board.

The new GPS watch I bought!
Now, for my running shopping spree today. I was hoping to find some Garmin's on a great deal for Amazon Prime Day today, and they did have one, but not for a major discount. They also had (still have until 3am) the FitBit Charge HR for $25 off (a $25 Amazon gift card). I read reviews to see if the "exercise" mode could easily track distance based on my steps and stride during the timed workout and well basically that was a big, fat no. I love my FitBit and decided that I want the Surge (the one with GPS and HR). I was googling discounts and found a bunch on eBay for $100 off, so I bid on a couple and actually won one! I am paying $162.50 for a used one (as long as it works, I don't care if it's used) and I CANNOT wait for it to get here to try it out!!!

I also got a new Samsung Galaxy S6 today! I signed up for the Verizon Edge plan and those of you on Verizon and have an update I HIGHLY recommend this program. I won't bore you with the details, but I got the phone, a case, and a screen protector for $13 after my trade-in. AMAZING! I am going to check out all the new things the phone can do on S Health and report back to you later.

Oh, and I also bought a few new pairs of running socks at Target today (I am not lying when I say I have a problem).

Keep on moving!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

My disorganization strikes again...

So, there has been a huge gap between my postings - I swear I have an explanation! Even though I teach and have summer's "off" I went up to work last Tuesday for a meeting. When I got home I was using my computer to research some things we had talked about in our meeting. By the time I went to post on here, my computer died and I reached in my bag to pull out my charger and found I had left it at school! :(

I wasn't able to get into the building until today, so that is why there is a lack of posts! When I did get up to work on Tuesday, all of the school administrators who hadn't seen me since the beginning of June said they could tell that I was losing weight! I can barely tell on myself, but those people who don't see you every day are the ones who can tell the best anyway.

I'm getting closer to this...
I then went shopping at my favorite plus-size store, Torrid, and although I'm not quite ready to move out of the store, I was able to try stuff on and a size 2 looked great and fit comfortably! (I was BARELY a size 2 last time I was there-buying some clothes in a size 3). I also bought some clearance pants from Old Navy and went down a size! I also went down from an XXL to an XL in their dresses and shirts. Needless to say, I'm pretty happy with results thus far! I think joining a challenge with some friends from a Facebook community to track every day for the month of July really helped. I'm making better choices when I go out to eat and don't feel as hungry throughout the day like I used to.

I haven't run as much as I'd like this past week, but I did try to do something every day. I did MANY, MANY squats this week through training on the Nike+ Training Club app and always feel so satisfied when I do those!

I think the lack of structure in the summer without working as much, has really thrown my training for a loop. I'm hoping that when I go back to work next week (as I cringe), I'm able to put more structure into my running.

Hope everyone has a great week!

Monday, July 6, 2015

Circuit Training Woes

I hope everyone enjoyed their 4th of July weekend! My weekend included corn hole, beer, ribs, and fireworks with friends and family. Of course some running too! 

I ran with my No Boundaries group on Saturday and we finally upped it to two miles! We were still running intervals, but I was able to push my pace a lot to make it difficult for me. I think pushing the distance also helped. 

I took Sunday as my rest day. I went to my dad's and had some dinner and watched the soccer game. What an amazing win for the US! It was awesome to see.

this is 100% me
Today, I did a Nike+ Training Club circuit that was 45 minutes long. I was sweating SO much! I had to modify some of the moves since I am not nearly strong enough for some of them, but I did the basic move that I could add on to afterwards. It was really difficult, but after I was done, I felt so good about myself! I haven't really worked out for more than 45 minutes before-and especially not doing circuits...I have this scary feeling that I am going to be SUPER sore tomorrow!

My sister's softball coach (and family friend) came up to me at my sister's game after seeing my race pictures on Instagram and asked me what in the world possessed me to start running. I kind of laughed it off and told how I started running and why. It just reminded me that I HATED running and used to be one of those people who could not understand why in the world someone would want to run. Then I set my mind to it and got a training plan, and just kept working. Don't get me wrong, I still have a long way to go to complete my long term goals, but just getting this far feels phenomenal! I can feel muscles in my legs (for the first time ever) and finally feel like I'm an athlete (even though I don't quite look like one yet). It really goes to show, whatever you put your mind to, you can accomplish! 

Keep going after your dreams!
Until next time-

Friday, July 3, 2015

The post race blues

Since my race on Sunday, I have been struggling to get motivated! I have been staying active and working out, but getting up to that 3 miles again as been difficult. I really would like to begin working up to 6, but I'm not sure that will happen for a little while. Even writing this post is proving difficult and I'm getting distracted by other things!

Monday was most definitely a rest day. My ankle has still been hurting and I am trying to take it easy, but I also have too much time on my hands since the summer slowed down. Thus, Monday I went to the craft store to make something to hold my (hopefully growing collection of) medals! I needed some motivation and needed something.

Tuesday I began circuit training with the Nike Training Club app. It is super hard, but I love it! They time all your circuits for you and it links with the Nike+ running app to track your activity for the week! I was using the Fitbit app, but I think I have found that I like these two together better. Then I created my medal hanger! It matches my bedroom decor and is just so cool! I love staring at it on my wall - just makes me want to do more (even though when I get out there I can't keep moving after 1.5 miles!)
I love the quote on the board. List of dream races right next to my medals!

Wednesday began a challenge with some people from the Facebook weight loss running group I belong to - From Fat to the Finish Line. 34 of us will all track our food for the entire month. There may be slip-up days, but we all agree that we will track. Day 1 was a success, however, I didn't eat enough throughout the day and when I got to my No Boundaries group I didn't have enough energy to run well...I knew should have eaten before I left, but there was a Brooks demo run with food, beer, and prizes afterward. I just didn't time my meals right is all. The demo run was so much fun! We took some pictures and thanked running for what we are capable of doing because of it.

Today I went for a run on my own and was only able to complete 1.5 miles - I had wanted to complete 2.5! Without a race to train for there really isn't any motivation. I made a list of all my dream races, but most of them are over with for this year or I don't have enough time to train. I did however find this amazing race that I cannot  wait to run in (just have to wait to sign up-these fees are expensive)! The Christmas Story Run has an amazing medal and runs from Higbee's (the Cleveland Store in the movie) to the house and back. It is a 5k and a 10k and I want to run the 10k in December. I should be able to do it, but No Boundaries training kind of throws things off. That training ends August 22, so that still gives me plenty of time to get the training in before December...I hope!

Nike+ Training Club app
Weight is starting to come off again which really makes me happy! I just have to remember to stay active and keep moving and ALWAYS find time to work out, regardless of what is going on. I'm not sure how many rest days I'm going to take in a week, but this training club app really seems to help and I love seeing all the numbers add up quickly for the minutes I worked out. My 17 year old sister used this app for her weight loss and is down 30+ pounds! I'm so proud of her and can't wait to get down to that weight too!

Until next time-