Thursday, May 28, 2015
Monday, May 25, 2015
Will there ever come a day when I will feel like I have my shit together? I'm thinking no...
Saturday, May 23, 2015
This is my wonderful boy giving me a kiss at the end of our run today.
I’ve been doing my “long runs” on Saturdays instead of Sundays for a few weeks. And normally Archer and Chakotay wouldn’t be a part of that.
But after feeling really good about a 6.5 mile run I did Thursday? I woke up in the night in AGONIZING Achilles pain.
The pain was so bad that I could barely walk Friday morning.
So after WEEKS of physical therapy last fall, and religiously stretching, foam rolling and using the electrical stimulation EVERY MOTHER FUCKING NIGHT – I’m right back to where I was.
I cannot tell you how incredibly discouraged I am.
So this morning the pain was less after not running but just walking a few miles yesterday so I decided to take the boys out to do some run walk intervals.
And it felt okay. After lunch we went to a local village which was having it’s village wide rummage sales and walked around and then stopped at Walmart to do some shopping and we just finished a yoga session. And I’m walking without too much pain.
So we’ll see what happens after I rest it for a while tonight and see if the rest stiffens it right back up.
I have a 10K race next weekend that I was hoping to do well in. So much for that.
I know there are worse things. And I still am going to go ahead and feel sorry for myself.
Tuesday, May 19, 2015
In their meetings, AA and NA members often offer thoughts and prayers for those addicts who are still “sick and suffering”.
It is a powerful reminder for many of what they have come from and come through and what they don’t want to go back to.
I had – by coincidence – some reminders of that today. First, I was towards the end of my run when I passed a very large man coming out of the pizza joint near my workplace. Even though I had my headphones on, I could hear how hard he was breathing. He had a pizza box and a large soda and he just GLARED at me when I ran by. He was a grey color and waddled along with difficulty.
Because I am a terrible person, my first thought about him was very judgmental. And then – almost immediately – I wondered if - when I was fat and frequented that very pizza joint - I ever glared at a particularly thin or fit person I passed.
And then I remembered how I felt back then. When every step was painful. When clothing was always too tight and horrifically uncomfortable. When walking short distances made me pant like a Basset Hound. When I felt guilt and shame for my eating choices but ate them anyway.
And I thought that this man was sick and suffering and even though I could not stop and “fix” him, I could offer thoughts of compassion, not judgment.
Later in the day, it came to my attention that someone that I know – who has a terrible problem with alcohol – was in the midst of a crisis and was angry at and fighting the people who were genuinely trying to help. Out of shame and/or denial.
And I felt for this person who is clearly still horribly sick and suffering but not yet ready to surrender. The pain I know that this person was feeling – even while lashing out – is almost tangible to me.
So as I reflected on this on my drive home – these 2 people from presumably different worlds – who came to my attention today I tried to realize what I am grateful for.
I have an addiction that I have not gotten complete control of yet. It still is ever present. And some days it wins.
But I am lucky that, for the most part, I am not someone who is still sick and suffering. I am reasonably fit. I can run and play and enjoy life more moments then not. My addiction no longer threatens my health on an everyday basis. I am not at risk of losing my family or career over this addiction.
So, as you guys know, I don’t pray. But I offer my positive thoughts to the 2 I brought up, as well as everyone else who is sick and suffering tonight. Because I KNOW – with absolute certainty, that is CAN get better. I know because I have been there and emerged – not perfect – but better. So much better…
Monday, May 18, 2015
Sunday, May 17, 2015
Thursday, May 14, 2015
Guess what today is? Marc's birthday!!
I know I've said this before, but I truly believe that if it were not for him I would never have lost weight and gotten fit. He is my rock and doesn't do nearly enough to accept credit for what a wonderful human being he is!
When we met, I was a teenager who listened to Debbie Gibson and joined every club in school. I was fat but popular and a hot mess in many ways. He was in his early 20's, listened to hard rock, had no real direction in life and hung with the burnout crowd.
In no way, shape or form should we have fit as a couple. And yet, here we are, 26 years later - more compatible and in love with one another than ever.
Making a major life change, even a positive one, sometimes breaks couples apart. And my weight loss has eliminated some of my issues but many more have surfaced to take their place. And no matter what, Marc has been there unconditionally.
So I take today's post to wish him the happiest of days and to remind him that we are getting better, not older. I look forward to spending many more birthdays by his side - through thick and thin! (Although hopefully not so thick!!)
Wednesday, May 13, 2015
This week Thin Jen has made a welcome re-appearance. She has been around in the last few months, but only to poke her head in for a moment or two and then has disappeared.
Don’t ask me why, but she showed up with her bags on Sunday, unpacked, and decided to stay a while.
I’ve felt in control and powerful this week. And this is despite still lamenting my poor performance at the half.
In fact, with the risk of jinxing it all, everything that CAN go right this week has seemed to.
I noticed it today when I visited a room with cupcakes – and not those dried out store bought chunks of crap – but homemade cupcakes with loads of frosting from a fantastic baker that I work with.
Not only did I not try one, but I was only mildly tempted. And for me? Mildly tempted is a VICTORY. And, bonus time, I didn’t feel sorry for myself. I actually did not want to eat one.
And then I ran to the grocery store to buy something healthy for dinner. In the past, “running” to the grocery store would mean getting in my car and driving. But no, I actually ran. And then walked back with a couple bags.
Geez, if I could string together more of these days I could actually – GASP – get some of this disgusting flab off of me!! Wouldn’t that be something????
Monday, May 11, 2015
Saturday, May 9, 2015
So this was my 3rd time doing the Heather A. Freeman Run to the Sun race, and it was my 4th half-marathon.
As I’ve been saying, I knew that I was totally unprepared for this race physically and mentally.
The half marathon started an hour earlier then the 5 and 10K’s but Marc got up with me and rode in knowing that he would have a wait.
So 6:30 in the morning we are up and it is already 72 degrees and humid. Coffee ingested, morning chores complete and we headed out.
Under the Captain Obvious files, milling around, talking to other runners, stretching, waiting for the race to start is MUCH more pleasant when it is in the 70’s versus 36 like last year! BUT, I also immediately noticed a warm but STRONG wind.
I noted more runners this year – possibly due to the much nicer conditions.
And then we were off. I tried to pace myself but started off way too fast. By only mile 3 my quads were burning. Perhaps biking 87 miles the week of your half marathon – including 20 the day before the race – is not smart.
By mile 6, I was streaming sweat and we made a turn directly into extremely strong winds. We got to run into the winds for the next 4-5 miles.
I am ashamed to admit – I started walking at about mile 8. I have never once walked in a race before, and here I was – giving up and giving in. Although, I must say that I was not the only one feeling the effect. I saw more people taking walk breaks then I have ever seen before in a race.
And part of me just didn’t give a shit. I knew there was zero chance of me finishing with a competitive time, so why kill myself?
At mile 11, I blissfully made a turn out of the wind, but by then the temps had climbed to 78 degrees and you could almost CHEW on the humidity. But I knew there were only 2 more miles.
We met up with the 5 and 10 kers coming from the opposite direction at mile 12 and I finally took the turn heading towards the finish.
I looked at the timer clock – I knew I sucked ass, but holy shit, did I ever! 2:02:17. That is OVER 20 minutes LONGER then I ran it last year!!
Yowza!! 32nd YES 32nd place out of 99 runners. 12th place for females.
So, my utter fail is complete.
Marc fared much better then me coming in at 57:02.
I will cut myself a little slack – if I ran the same speed as last year I would have come in 4th overall. So the heat, wind and humidity seems to have effected more then just me.
BUT, my weight gain plays a huge role in this, like it or not.
And after we got home and sat outside relaxing, a thought came to me – I said to Marc, “You know, I know I told you that I the biking we did last week wasn’t smart, but I’m not a professional athlete. It’s not my job to come in first place every race I run. There was no large prize money on the line. We spent a lot of wonderful, quality time with one another and isn’t that better then if I could have shaved 10 minutes off my finish time? And in the end, I did mostly run another half marathon…”
I think Marc was thrilled to hear me say this, but he tried not to make a big deal of it. He is always trying to walk a line - telling me how hard I am on myself while still trying to support me and my goals.
So my friends, that is where I’m at tonight. Tomorrow I might hate myself. And in some respects I feel that I am looking to justify my total collapse…
Friday, May 8, 2015
Yes, 20 miles. And then? Well it was too nice of a day to waste, so I started working on the flower beds. Weeding, cutting, laying dirt. I can't tell you how good it felt to be outside and sweating!
Late afternoon I did a Yin Yoga session to stretch out my muscles and joints. Then we headed in to pick up our swag bag and race numbers.
Then it was a pasta dinner. Including garlic bread. Oh sweet justification of carb-loading!!!
Foam rolling was next.
Then I got everything ready for tomorrow. I am now relaxing and hoping that a busy today today will translate to a restful night's sleep.
I am not ready, but I am as prepared as I can be...
Wednesday, May 6, 2015
Tuesday, May 5, 2015
Don’t worry – I didn’t get into a car accident!
No, I’m talking about the movie, Whiplash. I finally got the opportunity to watch it. OMG, it seriously is one of the best movies I have seen in my life. I would place it at least in the top 5.
If you have not seen it, you absolutely MUST. There are a load of reasons to see this movie the least of which is a staggeringly BRILLIANT performance by JK Simmons, who is the most deserving Oscar winner in years in my not so humble opinion.
The film, if you haven’t seen it, focuses on a college freshman in an elite music school and the slave driving and often cruel orchestral leader.
There are many lessons and controversial talking points that could be discussed, But as I was thinking about the movie later, I was thinking about drive and dedication and what someone can accomplish if he or she puts his or her mind to it.
The film shows the young man working his ass off. Sacrificing everything. Making himself – literally – bleed for his craft.
And I thought about myself. When I was in high school I knew with absolute certainty that I would be moving to New York City after graduation and pursuing a starring role on Broadway.
I didn’t, of course. I realized that I was not willing to struggle and scrape and sacrifice everything in order to potentially make it big. I gave up. Chickened out.
Does that make me a coward? Sometimes I think so. It’s like the whole weight struggle right now. Of course I CAN get back down to 117 pounds. But I’m taking the easy road. It’s like I’m not willing to struggle anymore for what I supposedly want.
And that’s the simple reality of it. You either work for it or whine about it. Or take SECOND best. I believe that I could have worked harder, got better grades, advanced further, become more talented in certain areas. But instead I settled for good enough.
Is that something to be ashamed of? Is being uber-driven to the point of obsession admirable? Is being content with okay pathetic? I truly don’t know…
Sunday, May 3, 2015
I just had to do it, didn’t I? I had to open my big fat mouth and talk about how great May was starting out. So I guess I brought this on myself…
Today Marc and I got up and did our normal morning routine. Then we ate an early brunch and got our bikes out. It was windier than we would have liked, but it was in the low 70’s and sunny. I was excited to finally have a chance to get some biking in!
We started out on a route Marc had suggested. All was great until about 7 miles in. Then from a house a dog came running at us. Many times a dog just gets excited, but I recognized the look of this dog – he was FOCUSED and hell bent for leather at Marc.
The owner of the dog was out there with another dog and inexplicably, was recording her dog going after us while yelling at him. He completely ignored her, ran up and bit Marc squarely in the calf. Marc told the woman he had been bitten, which she ignored and continued to call the dog which finally came back to her.
Marc and I got the hell out of there. I saw the teeth marks, but it wasn’t bleeding too much and he wanted to continue. We rode a few more miles and came to a parking lot of a nature trail where we stopped.
We took pictures of the wound that was starting to swell and I told Marc that it would definitely need to be reported.
We continued on, and I was determined not to let it spoil the day. 10 minutes later – yup – you guessed it – another dog. This one went after Marc and I could see she was trying to bite him but couldn’t get the angle. She turned around like she was heading home but then changed her mind and came running at me. I knew it was coming and sure enough, she bit me in the calf. I screamed.
That dog went back to her owners. This woman was more concerned than the previous one and – albeit reluctantly – gave us her name and phone number.
We were told the dog is “really friendly” – I resisted the urge to say “You mean when she’s not fucking BITING PEOPLE??!!”
Marc has been a bike rider for YEARS and has never been bitten. And then we both get nailed in one day.
All things considered, it could have been MUCH worse. What really pisses me off is that now I am scared when I pass a house where there’s a dog.
Marc will call dog control tomorrow to report both incidents and so they can confirm that the dogs have their shots.
I was bound and determined to not let it ruin the rest of our day and even made jokes about it. Marc was less forgiving.
We ended up riding a total of 36 miles and I feel good. But I can’t believe there are such irresponsible dog owners out there!! Ok, I actually can believe it, but it really pisses me off!!
Saturday, May 2, 2015
May is a special month for me. I had my last drink of soda in May, 2010. That may not seem like a big deal with all the other life changes I made, but when I say that Mountain Dew was my drug of choice? It’s not a joke.
Giving that up and not having had a DROP since that time is a very big deal to me.
I drank about 3 – every day.
May 2011 marks the first time I ran a mile straight outside without stopping. In 16 minutes. I was SO happy.
May 2013 – I ran my first official half-marathon.
Marc’s birthday is in May – I think I enjoy celebrating his birthday more than mine!
So I was thrilled when May arrived yesterday. I received my lab results in the mail. I am less than thrilled about my BAD cholesterol – a discouraging 149. BUT with my triglycerides at rock bottom (76) and my GOOD cholesterol being sky high (72), my ratios put me at 1/2 the risk of the average female of heart attack.
So, it’s okay.
Yesterday was sunny, windy and warm and I took a walk at lunch and soaked up the sun that I have been SO missing all winter. I got home and Marc and I did a hard yoga session while I could smell the beef stew that Marc had been cooking all day in the slow cooker.
I then got a call from the local radio station that I won $100 in free gas! Lucky me!
Today also dawned beautiful and I did a planned 10 mile run. It was in the high 60’s and my body is not yet used to that temperature, so I had a bit of a rough time. That scares me a little heading into the half next week, but as Tony Horton repeatedly tells me, all I can do is my best and “forget the rest”.
Marc was taking the dogs for a walk and I timed it perfectly, running into him just as he was turning around and we walked a leisurely 2 more miles.
After lunch we sat outside for a while and relaxed and then I spent a little while clearing some weeds from my flower bed. We have an abundance of lilac trees in our yard, and as I weeded I was able to see the tiny purple buds that are starting to appear.
Tomorrow they are calling for another gorgeous day, which I plan to use to FINALLY get on the bike for the first time this year!
I feel good. I feel hopeful. I sincerely and truly hope that everyone’s May is starting out with as much promise as mine has!