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Monday, July 5th, 2010
10:00 pm
Back in the saddle!
Getting back into the groove, and trying to make working out and making better eating choices a priority. I've been working on the 30 day commitment activity in Cheri Huber's "Making a Change for Good", and my commitment was to work out 4 times per week. I'm in week four, and will successfully hold to my commitment and I feel as if it's something I can also continue with.

I'm tired of waffling around within the same 20 pound weight range, and want to make changes that are going to last. I'm taking it at a good pace. I'm trying to improve my eating in a manner that won't drive me crazy, and I know that drastic changes and deprivation make me CRAZY and even if I get some quick good results, I will rebel quickly and lose any ground I've gained.  I'm trying to change the way I think about all of this (doing the thinky head stuff of "Making a Change" is part of that) so that when I hit my the mythical boundary, that's always caused me to stumble, I will be able to continue losing past it and not get freaked out and stop.

I made a chart for the rest of this year's weight loss to put on the fridge. Each week I'll record my weight and compare it to where I want to be (basically, circa 1.5 lbs per week lost). And, to keep myself honest I'm emailing J with my weight each Monday, and he's emailing me with his. We've both got goals, and I need allies and regular contact. I respond well to structure and having to report back.  If anyone else wants to set up some sort of reciprocal motivation/feedback with me, let me know. :)
Wednesday, October 21st, 2009
7:59 am
Weds morning pride
From the grove this past weekend: "All you have to do is run."

Travelling, and having a treadmill just a few floors down makes things... more convenient. I don't know if it gets easier, but at least I had the most minimal barriers to overcoming my urge to not do anything.  So, it's Weds morning and already I've worked out on Monday and Tuesday night.  Spent 30 minutes on the treadmill, walking with some short stints (3-4 minutes at a time) of running. It's a start. Now to continue the trend. *hopes*
Tuesday, July 7th, 2009
11:33 pm
Back to running!
So, I am getting back into running.  Started the "turn your walk into a 5k" plan, and today I did run number one of the third week.  Got the first two weeks completed successfully. Huzzah on me.

After I am done with this plan, I will start in on the "turn your jog into a 10k" plan.  Though I think I will run out of time one week before the 10k I want to run, which is on Sept 5.  Worst case, if I don't think I'm ready, I could just run the 5k instead.

So far, so good. I almost didn't run tonight because my right knee suddenly hurt.  Altered plans to lower the possible impact, and drove to the YMCA to run on a treadmill.  Softer on the knees than running on concrete path by the lake - less scenic certainly, but I am terrified of fucking my body up such that running becomes impossible.

Just have to keep following the scheduled runs. Trust the training. One foot in front of the other.
Thursday, February 5th, 2009
11:07 am
Week 5: Too hard, too fast
Oy, missed on posting last week.  I actually went pretty darn hardcore last week - I went to the gym 6 out of the 7 days of the week. A good mix of treadmill running and walking, one day of Jillian Michaels' 30 Day Shred video.  Also, took the Bootcamp class at the Y. Dear gods was that ass-kicking.  crochetfinger : Dave wants to kill us. That must be his goal. :)

The other exciting class was down in Champaign with cassiopia  and blossom_woman .  I went to visit them and we went to their gym and tried a class called "Drums Alive!"  Basically you are surrounded by balance balls on little pedestals, and the each person has two regular drumsticks and the teacher leads you through this rhythmic drumming routine.  It was kind of ridiculously fun, with heavy doses of feeling silly. I was wearing my heartrate monitor (per usual) and in the 55 minute class I burned about 550 calories. Not too shabby, eh?

This week is not going as well in terms of intensity - my left knee felt pretty jacked up Tuesday, so yesterday I took it easy. Today it is feeling better.  Stretching and resting good for me.  I'll gym it today for longer time and less intensity to make sure I don't reoffend the knee, but the YMCA challenge is in its second stretch and I still plan on kicking more ass.

What is everyone else up to? Or, if not up to, hoping to be up to?

Sunday, January 25th, 2009
11:17 pm
Week 3: Still going, but being sick sucks
This past week I went to the gym 5 days, walking or running on the treadmill 30-35 minutes each time.  I didn't go as hard as I'd want because on Weds afternoon I got a wicked cold. Feeling better but still not 100%.  My two major highlights: on Weds I ran 5 minutes at 6.0 on the treadmill - that's half a mile in 5 minutes.  And Saturday I decided to be all macho and push myself and I ran 10 minutes at 6.0 - meaning I ran a 10 minute mile!  Of course, I felt sick and terrible afterwards and thought I was going to pass out.  But I didn't!

Haven't weighed in officially yet because the Y was crazy today.   I don't think I lost weight this week - too much chicken noodle soup, and not enough restraint at a friend's birthday party.  Self-control apparently not my high point so far.  Must work harder on that.  Got really down on myself today for that.  Tomorrow starts a new week, and it's time to rein it in.
Tuesday, January 20th, 2009
10:43 am
Week 2: It still works!
I knew this was going to be a challenging week - gone to the STL/Grove from Weds on, and that's generally a no-formal-exercise time. This time though, I brought my laptop, yoga mat, and a few DVDs in hope that I would sneak in some time to exercise. And I did - on Thurs and Friday I did DVDs in the tree house. They were both non-cardio days, but every little bit counts.

Monday: 40 min on treadmill, which included 2 separate 1 mile stretches of running
Tuesday: Jillian Michaels 30-Day Shred DVD. What a good workout! (27 minutes)
Weds: 51 minutes on treadmill, including a 2 mile run and another 1.1 mile run. So - in combination I ran 5K.  What a challenge, but so good to do.
Thursday: Yoga Conditioning for Weight Loss DVD. My absolute favorite yoga dvd. (46 minutes)
Friday: Stretch Conditioning DVD. Stretching, much of it familiar yoga. I think I like my other stretch DVD better. :)  (22 minutes)

I also discovered on my heart rate monitor that I can choose weekly goals. For me, it's been 4 workouts in a week with at least a total of 3 hours of workout time.  Even better - at the end of the week there is a little summary screen that comes up and gives the totals. To my delight, I found that if you've both set a weekly goal, and you've achieved it, then a little icon of a winner's trophy comes up on the screen and stays on the monitor's watch all week long! :)

When I got back from STL yesterday afternoon I stopped at home, got my gym stuff, and went to work out and weigh in for the past week. The verdict: Lost another 4.4 pounds!
Sunday, January 11th, 2009
10:21 pm
Week 1: Gee ma, it works
My goal this week was to do something physical every day, if possible, but to get to the gym at least 4 times this week. I did it - actually got there 5 days this week:
Monday and Friday I ran on the treadmill.
Tues and Thurs I did faux-running on the sort-of-elliptical machine that really mimics running.
Sunday I went to the weekly workout class that's part of the Biggest Loser program.  It was pretty slow at times, but had some great core work. Next week, when I'll be out of town, the pace is going to be picked up!

The verdict: weighed in today at 4.0 lbs less than I was last week.  Apparently this working out thing actually works. ;)
Friday, January 9th, 2009
8:31 pm
Back into the swing of things
Back in the workout saddle again for me.  I signed up for the Y's "biggest loser" challenge so that I'd have some structure in which to get my ass kicked back into gear.  Kick off was Sunday night, and it was a big disorganized mess. But the winner at the end of 8 weeks gets free entry into the $110 winter training session that starts in March that I really want to take. So, trying to do my best to kick some ass. I'll try to report weekly on my workouts.  Back to workin' out! :)
Friday, January 2nd, 2009
10:54 pm
Running, running, running
So, the last few months haven't been pretty.  Almost no gym visits - too busy trying to move.  Eating? Less than stellar, and holidays always not so good.  I've put back on a few pounds. Not a lot, but more than I wanted.

Now that things are settling down at home, and my big birthday a few months away, it's time to get back to work.

Today's visit to the gym: ran 1.58 miles, walked for 9 minutes before and after that.  It's a good start!!!
Monday, September 22nd, 2008
3:17 pm
My update
Well, I can't seem to get myself to post about life in general. At least I can post here:

My activity last week:

Monday: Swimming, 30 laps
Tues: 20 minutes of workout DVDs (failure! see below)
Weds: Swimming, 32 laps
Thurs: Nothing official, but I know I walked at least 4 miles.
Friday: Swimming, 34 laps
Saturday: Hiking, 9.5 miles
Sunday: rest!

Tuesday doesn't really count for me. Started in on a DVD from the library, but it was awful. Shaky camera work, terrible lack of direction (how can I follow your movements when I am bent over staring at my feet and you don't tell me to move?). I generally will put up with a lot in order to try new videos, as sometimes there might be a really great cooldown, or maybe the annoying setting won't be so annoying by the end. This one was terrible though.  Then tried another 10 minutes of a different video, and that one I just couldn't get into. I figured 20 minutes is better than none.

I've been swimming a lot this past week, and have been enjoying it. I think my form is terrible, and it reminds me how I need to improve my lung capacity. I hate feeling *so* untalented as I do when I'm 3/4 way through a swimming session and it feels like it is taking all my energy to just not drown. I know on a brain level that it's not that bad, but sometimes mid-lap it feels like that in my lungs and in my gut.  But still I swim.

This week my goals are to go to an active workout class at the Y (something more aerobic than yoga or pilates), and to run at least once. So far swimming has not made my muscle pull worse, so I am hoping the last two weeks off from running have been enough time to heal. I miss running.
Monday, September 15th, 2008
9:05 am
Last week's progress:

Monday: Ran 1 mile, run/walk another mile

Weds: Swimming, 30 laps (Turns out that's more than I've done in one session before)

Thursday: Yoga DVD (47 minutes)

Since the 5k, when I've run longer than half a mile I get strain along my upper inner thigh.  Treatment for groin (adductor) pulls: rest and stretching. So, despite my fondest urges to go running I think I am going to take it easy for at least another week. To make up for it I am trying to work more swimming in so that I'm getting exercise but not overusing those muscles. Luckily it seems minor and only really impacts me when I'm actively running.

When I swam Weds I made sure to try to push myself. I have not gone swimming regularly so my legs showed the soreness the next day. What do I do? Yoga!  Well, it's been awhile since I did that particular DVD and I forgot how calming it is at the time but how hardcore it actually is.

Friday?  Barely walking.

This week, I'm aiming to bring up my activity level while still giving my adductors enough space to heal up. YMCA pool to the rescue.

How bout you? :)
Monday, September 8th, 2008
11:06 am
I know I am in medical research but even I get confused. ;)
Here is what I THINK I understand.

Optimal exercise is 60 min a day but the gov't recommends at least 20 min to not scare people off with the 60 number.


Would 20 min 3 days a week and 45 min 4 days a week, with some weeks being 4- 20 min and 3- 45 min be good for weight loss?   All this is on my exercise bike.

My bike has a program where it tells you when to do hand weight reps during the workout.  2 sets of 5 different exercises 20 per rep. 

trying to do sit ups after each work out.  100 total

Does this sound like a plan from all you guys have read?

It may be too ambitious (the 7 day thing) but this is the goal I want to shoot for.

I want to be down 12 pounds by the 1st of the year....maybe...
Friday, September 5th, 2008
10:30 am
Well LeeAnn has beyond inspired me, well her and finally graduating so I have the time and energy for life again.  I have bee doing really well on my exercise bike since August 18th, not every other day yet but working my way there.  Better than never which is what it was before.  I do 45 min 8 miles with hand weights.  I am also starting Yoga one day a week on Wed. 
Must Keep It Up!!
Thursday, September 4th, 2008
12:09 am
August was for running
Inspired by cassiopia , I think I should start posting my running figures for the month. August was all about 5k training for me, so run and run I did. Followed a plan, and each time I ran I warmed up with 4 minutes of walking, and cooled off with maybe 10-20 minutes of walking. Distance walked home was basically determined by "how far is it back to my parents' house". :)  I only recorded the time spent in running on mapmyrun.com, and according to my training log over there, I ran 17.47 miles total. Woot woot!

During August I pretty much ignored any other formal exercise, some of it out of fear of overtraining or of negatively impacting my ability to run.  This month is about finding a balance - I really need to add some strength training back in, and maybe some yoga.  Got to stick with this - once the fitness ball is rolling, it's so much easier to just keep with it than to work in fits and starts.

Tuesday, July 29th, 2008
11:21 pm
Bellydance for Wimps DVD
Bellydance for Wimps came in at the library, and it's due tomorrow so I decided to give it a try. I should have stopped once I saw the cover: the lady is holding a piece of pizza. The entire chain of "For Wimps" fitness videos all show women who are dressed for the given fitness activity also holding some terrible-for-you piece of food. How horrible.

The video itself was meh. Moves themselves were standard, and the women in the video were okay. The host woman kept using really cheesy language - by the end I felt like she was my pimp, trying to get me to shake and shimmy and be sexier in order to sell my goods.  And, if I ever hear the phrase "this move is really juicy" again, it will be too soon.

(Though, the arm shimmies reminded me that I haven't really done any upper-body work since I jacked up my shoulder in April. It's about time to work back into that.)
1:21 am
Week 3 of 5k training
Weds: Run 10, walk 1, run 4.
Fri: Run 10, walk 1, run 4.
Monday: Run 20, walk 1, run 9. Holy shit, I ran a lot. And I survived just fine. Better than fine, great.

The perfect addition to this would be some extra stretching or yoga on the in-between days. I don't think I can afford that, schedule-wise, but in the future I will add it in.  Woot!
Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008
9:33 am
Training for the 5k: Week 2
Yesterday I finished up the second week's training for the 5 k.  On the schedule this past week was:
Weds: Run 8, Walk 2. Repeat.
Friday: Run 7, Walk 1, Run 7.
Monday (a day late): Run 15, Walk 1, Run 4.

Sweet jeebus, I ran 15 minutes straight yesterday!  Not at all fast, Ran on the inside track at the gym, so I was able to easily measure my distance. Ran 1.3 miles straight, so I am a third of the way to being able to run 3.2 miles on August 30th. Woot! :)
Tuesday, July 15th, 2008
11:28 pm
The pushup
Pushups are basic, one of those things we all know how to do and mostly ignore.  But a NYT article (Pfeh -- last night you didn't have to pay for it, but now you do -- sorry.  Mar 11, 2008 "An Enduring Measure of Fitness: The Simple Push-Up" if you want to look it up.) calls the humble pushup is "an enduring measure of fitness."  They call it "the ultimate barometer," and cite them as an indicator of how well the body will handle the stresses of aging.  The Washington Post provides this chart to measure how you're doing against people of your age and gender.  I, for example, should be able to do 24 pushups in one session, and if I can do 39 of them, I'm in truly "superior" shape.

Depressed at how few you're able to do?  Then take a look at One Hundred Pushups, where they provide a six-week training program to get you able to do 100 pushups in a single session.  Really. 

I'll post my pushup numbers if you do....
Sunday, July 13th, 2008
11:55 pm
It begins!
This was week one of training to do a 5k on August 30. I'm following a six week plan that I found on the Fitness Magazine website a while back. This week my runs were:

Tuesday: Run 4 minutes, walk 1. Do 3 times for a total of 15 minutes.
Thursday: (Same thing)
Sunday: Run 9 minutes, walk 1. Do twice for a total of 20 minutes.

For all of these, I walked 6-10 minutes before and after as a warm-up and cool-down. These runs were *very* slow. You're supposed to go at a pace that you can maintain for the entire time, so I was at a pace where I could probably have fast-walked slightly faster. Which feels frustrating. But... if I don't start correctly, I will never get to the point where I have the endurance to run faster longer. I don't get the sense that these plans were meant for people like me who still have a large chunk of weight to lose. At the beginning, felt like my chest might explode. Progress has to start somewhere. Tonight before the long run I didn't think I'd be able to finish. During the second 9 minutes I felt like I was going to throw up, but I didn't. So, victory!

Next up should be Tuesday's "Run 8, walk 2. Repeat.". I'm a little weary that in two weeks they're going to have me run 20 minutes straight. But I am going to follow their program, and hopefully by August's end I will be able to run those 3+ miles of actual road without stopping!
Wednesday, July 2nd, 2008
3:32 pm
Long time, no post
Well, long time no post.

For the month I was gone, I went on one structured fitness walk at the Grove. That's it. But, I was working and walking and on my feet a lot, and I'm about where I was before I left. I am a few lbs from a big goal. A week ago my hope was to get there by the end of July. I think maybe I can go 5 beyond it by that time, if I stick with it.  Yesterday I walked for half an hour at the Y. Today I walked another half an hour, and mixed in a few little running sprints too. I have been trying out Wii Fit at home, it is cute but I don't like having a machine tell me I'm overweight. I already know, but still, not friendly!

I have also made the decision to run a 5k back in Wisconsin at the end of August. I have never run more than a mile straight outside (and even that only a few times), so this should be a good change. I like running. Scratch that, I love running. I'm just not good at it. Yet.

I am grateful that the Y has an indoor track - if I was relying on it not being muggy outside in order to train, it'd never get done. Next week I begin one of the "6 weeks to a 5k!" training programs.

What have y'all been up to?
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