strength

Just Dreaming…

If I could get my act together and muster up the energy, motivation, and persistence I used to have (a couple years ago when I was first losing weight), there are a  few things I’d be determined to do. Since I just don’t have the drive I used to, I make no promises to hold to these goals, but they’re things I want to work toward.

1. Cutting Out Sugar: We’ve used up most of our grocery budget for this month already, so although I do have every intention of revisiting my mini-detox I couldn’t finish a few weeks ago, it’ll have to wait until we have fresh funds to buy a fresh batch of fruits and veggies. While we finish eating whatever’s currently in thee pantry, I hope to steer clear of added sugar. ‘

2. 14 Days of Yoga: I just keep hearing and reading about how good yoga is for runners, controlling cravings, and managing stress. Work is getting busy, I’m running a lot more now that the weather is getting nicer, and it would probably help me get off sugar. I found a couple DVD’s at the library that each have 7 20-minute yoga workouts. Seems simple enough. Just gotta vacuum first! Ha!

3. Committing To A Schedule: I work odd hours, my husband works odd hours, things change all the time and there’s always something to do. We’ve been eating dinner as early as 5 and as late as 10. There’s been pizza (veggie at least! And only 2 pieces!) for breakfast at 10:30. In the past week I’ve woken up as early as 4:50am and as late as 10:27. I used to get up at 6 or 6:30 every morning, get my run in by 7:15, take a shower and eat breakfast by 8:30, and work 9-5. I’d make dinner, clean up around the house, relax a little bit with the husband and get to bed around 10:30-11. I need some normalcy again! I’m supposed to be able to set my own work schedule starting in June. I’m praying it helps.

4. 35 More Workouts: I’m still bummed that I never completed the initial challenge that led me to create this blog. I know that I need to do some cross training and some strength workouts during my marathon training but just wouldn’t know how to work it in.

Maybe a little bit of each. One day at a time…

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27/18-19

Wow! Am I really more than halfway?? Time flies when you’re having fun literally working your butt off! I was planning on doing some kind of halfway check in thing when I got to my halfway point, but technically that was last night. Oops! Time allowing, I’ll give a good recap this weekend. Speaking of time, I’m a little short on it tonight. I did a double today so I just got home and finished dinner about 15 minutes ago. I still haven’t taken a shower. Yuck!

So real quick – I completed the same HIIT the Slopes treadmill workout I tried a few weeks ago when I first began this little challenge. When I first ran this 3 weeks ago, I had to drop the speed down .5 mph and the incline down 1%. Tonight I ran it as written! I stopped a couple times, once because I thought the class I wanted to go to was starting (it wasn’t), another time because the emergency stop tab fell off the machine (don’t you HATE when that happens!?), and a third time because I was running the 5 minutes of 7.5 mph at a 2% inline at the very end and I was kinda starting to have trouble breathing and my legs were getting really tight. I can’t wait for they day when I can run this straight though. It’s the hardest treadmill workout I’ve tried yet, and it would be such an accomplishment to nail it!

From Chaarg

That was my workout 18. 500 calories burned. Workout 19 was a combo of a few things. I spent 20 minutes on the elliptical – I set the cross ramp as high as it would go (20) so it worked every muscle in my legs, and I set the resistance to a moderate 9 (out of 20?).  After that I switched gears and went to the Body Works plus Abs class. I have to say, I’m not a huge fan of this class at my normal LA Fitness, the LA 20 minutes away has a GREAT Body Works class that I feel like works the whole body at a moderate to high intensity level. The class tonight was really just 50 minutes of weights, squats and lunges, and abs. Altogether I think my workout 19 burned about 380 calories.

Tomorrow the plan is a long steady run on the treadmill. I’m not sure how many miles though. I did 8 last week. So 9 this week? 10? 8 again? I just have yoga Saturday morning so I can really make it a good one. What would you do?

21/15.5

Nothing fancy tonight, no pictures, nothing too insightful. Just a quick recap of the past couple days of working out. Yesterday I went to Body Works Plus Abs at LA with a friend (finally!). It was a great toning workout and I was pretty sore today. I’m guessing I only burned about 300 calories so I’m counting it as a half workout. The other half of that workout will be yoga and stretching with my running group tomorrow morning (if I wake up on time. Ha!) I figure that will burn another 150 calories or so, so that’s only a half a workout too. After three weeks or tough workouts, I really need to stretch and unwind!

Since running group isn’t actually running tomorrow (it’s just been too cold for too long), I decided to get my long run in tonight at the gym, on the treadmill. 8 miles. It could have been completely miserable (my legs were burning because I didn’t have a rest day yesterday), but a little birdie told me that there’s a place online where I could watch Frozen for free. I pulled up the site on my phone and watched almost the entire movie on my hour and 20 minute run. If I don’t have scenery, at least I had a movie. A good one too! I need to figure out how to load movies onto my phone or something so that I’m not streaming them and using up a ton of data – can you believe LA Fitness doesn’t have wifi?? So that was 868 calories burned tonight too.

My eating has been right on track, although I was hungry last night. All night. Just very hungry. I just ate according to my plan and today I was fine. I think it was because I ran a couple errands after Body Works last night and the gym I had to go to for the class is about 20 minutes away. I didn’t have dinner until 8:15 and it was too late for me. I’m getting a little concerned that maybe the more I workout, the more calories I may need to eat, and I’m not opposed to trying to up my calories by 100-200 a day. It’d mean having larger snacks basically. But I’m still going to continue to eat my 1450-1500 calories a day until I’m hungry all the time, tired all the time (and getting enough sleep), or if I hit a plateau. So we’ll see.

Tomorrow is my official weekly weigh in, so come back to see how I did – I have a feeling I lost a bit this week!

How do you keep yourself occupied on a long run?

19/14

Tonight I did something I thought I never could possibly in my entire lifetime do – I ran as fast as an elite runner. Granted it was only for 30 seconds at a time, and it was on a treadmill, but I didn’t come anywhere near falling off or feeling out of control and I even had the incline set to 1%. 6 minute mile pace. Such a rush! The workout I chose tonight was fantastic for speed work. I’m definitely going to pull this one out again. I didn’t adjust anything, except I set the incline to 1% for the whole duration of my workout. I walked for 2 minutes to warm up, then ran 8 at 6mph, I repeated the workout 5 times, then cooled down with 5 minutes at 6mph and 5 minutes of walking at 3.5 with no incline.

After my little running adventure, I did some abs. Not only did my run make me feel like a rockstar, but I did 2 sets one 1 minute planks! I wasn’t completely drained when I got home even, so I vaccuumed the entire house – another 35 calories burned. Nice!

Eating today was going great until I learned that ground pork is way higher in calories than ground chicken. You see, Meijer was out of ground chicken (go figure, do they ever have everything I need in stock??) so I got ground pork instead because it was on sale and because it’s “the other white meat”. I figure it’s calorie content would be comparable to ground chicken. Um, no. Not even close. 4 oz has almost twice as many calories, 297 compare to 160 in ground chicken. I ended up eating 3/4 of my Buffalo Meatloaf and all of my green beans, and I  was satisfied. Still, it is so hard to leave a good portion of your food uneaten when you’re not stuffed and it tastes good. It’s okay though, the best part of my “diet” is that I have dessert literally every night. Usually 75-80 calories of protein and 100-150 calories of something sweet. I can skip over-sized portions and junk food all day because I know I’ll end my night with dessert.

I’d love to get some conversation going here or on Facebook – how do you stay on track when watching what you eat? Anyone have any other good workouts for speed training?

18/12-13

Two more workouts done! I cannot believe I’m still on track. Having a plan, some specific goals, and taking it day by day has really worked for me this time. My goals are simple:

  • Workout 5 days a week for 7 weeks.
  • Maintain a weekly calorie deficit of 5,950 calories per week.
  • Eat my pre-planned meals and snacks each day to avoid binge eating.
  • Lose 12 lbs (7 more to go) by our vacation.

The plan is something like pick out healthy meals, make healthy meals, eat healthy meals and snacks, don’t binge eat, make every workout worthwhile, be happy with progress of any kind. Each day is just a set of decisions I have to make to keep myself headed in the right direction. Do I stop at Target to pick up a bag of candy to eat while we watch a movie? Nope, we have dark chocolate chips and cherries at home. Do I skip tonight’s workout and do a double on Saturday? Been there, done that, doubles aren’t fun! Do I go to the gym and get by doing just the bare minimum? I can do better than that. Do I get to bed on time so my morning, and therefore my day, seems less rushed and crazy? Yes, even though Allegiant is just getting good. Skip my afternoon snack so I can have more dessert later? I need that energy fore my workout, and I need to eat less sugar. Just a series of decisions!

So yesterday, I decided to eat my normal healthy meals, and I went to the gym after work. I ran on the treadmill for about an hour total and completed another treadmill workout. This time it was the Hitting the Slopes 2 workout. I ran the first one a couple weeks ago and it was brutal. I had no idea I was so out of shape. This one looks like it was maybe a little easier, but I didn’t adjust it at all. I had a much easier time completing it than the first one;  I stopped once for a minute and a second time for 30 seconds. I just couldn’t catch my breath! I can tell I’m getting stronger though and I’m excited to try some of these workouts again and see how easy they’ve become.

Tonight, I couldn’t fathom running. Even if yesterday’s workout was a little easier, I was still dripping sweat and exhausted by the end of it. So I decided to do some weights, because I was finally feeling not quite so sore, and then I went for a swim. Swimming in winter is really kind of fun. And it’s a great way to burn some calories while giving some sore muscle and joints a break. I burned about 200 calories in just a half hour. Altogether I probably only burned 280 calories tonight, but I gained muscle (which burns fat even when your body is at rest), and was able to give myself a break from running while still getting a good workout in.

How’s your week of workouts going? What to you turn to to switch things up?

15/10-11

It’s been a while. I’m sorry. Thursday was one of the worst days I’ve had in a long time. I got yelled at (literally) by my boss and received 2 write up for forgetting to make 2 phone calls. He crushed my spirit and I didn’t have then enegry to workout or write. Friday was a bit better, but it was date night so I missed my workout and writing once again. Today though, I totally made up for all of that. I spent over 2 hours at the gym and here I am updating!

My workout today was a twofer. I ran 6 miles on the treadmill, switching off between a 1/2% and 1% incline and then dropping to a 0% incline on the last mile but increasing the speed by .1 mph for every tenth of a mile. Today I dedicated my 6 miles to Meg’s Miles, a virtual running event to honor the life of Meg Cross Menzies and raise awareness for safety for runners on the road. If you haven’t heard, Monday morning this week, Meg was out for a morning run. It was light out, she was on a 2 foot wide shoulder running toward traffic. She did everything right. A drunk driver swerved off the road and killed her. So today I ran 6 miles for her. I spent a little time praying for her family and friends and that this would finally be a time for awareness to be raised for the safety of runners out on roads in every neighborhood. Please friends, be conscious of pedestrians while driving!

Anyway, after my 6 mile run, I went to LA’s Body Works Plus Abs class (finally! I’ve been trying to make it for weeks!). It was okay. They ran out of 5lb weights so I had to hold two 2.5 lb weights and it was a little hard to hold onto them; not too heavy, my thumb just hurt from hold two handles instead of one. The upper boy workout would’ve been great though with the right weights. The ab portion was fantastic. I didn’t feel like there was much of a lower body workout and I ended up skipping the cool down and spent 10 minutes on a few lower body weight machines. I  wrapped it all up with 10 minutes on the elliptical. 914 calories burned total! I considered half those calories workout 10 and half workout 11. So I’m still on track.

My eating on the other hand – not on track at all. Thursday I was upset and only had my three meals, no snacks. and only 4 glasses of water. Friday I did well all day until I skipped half of my afternoon snack and went out for dinner with my husband. We went to a Mexican restaurant and I had tons of chips and salsa, 1 1/2 small chicken quesadillas, and hald of the refried beans and rice. Oh, plus some sour cream and guacamole. I was stuffed. ANd then I went home and had 800 calories of York peppermint patties. I felt sick to my stomach. I hope never to do that again! All in all I’m going to guess it was an extra 2,200 calories. Yikes! I was to hungry from not eating enough Thursday. Luckily I was still full today from eating too much last night too. I only had lunch, a 100 calorie snack, a MUCH smaller portion of last night’s dinner, and dessert. Right about 1,000 calories for today. Tomorrow I get back on track!

Oh, and my weight. Yesterday I weighed in at the exact weight I was last Friday. I was a little bummed. But I didn’t gain anything and my clothes are much looser so I know I’m still on track. Actually today at the grocery store, someone noticed my Polar Dash fleece and asked if I ran the 14 mile course last Saturday – she was surprised that I ran the 10k cause I looked like I was in good running shape! And then an older couple by the check out said I looked skinny and like I’d be a fast runner (this came from out of nowhere, seriously!) and then said I was really strong to pick fit all my groceries into 2 bags and then carry them out to the car one on each shoulder. And honestly, I am pretty strong to be able to do that. I wouldn’t have been able to do that a few weeks ago. I’m still proud of the progress I’ve made and excited to see what the next 5 weeks holds!

(Sorry for the lack of pictures today….)

How was your Saturday workout? Anyone else run for Meg?

7/5

Week one is done! I’m really proud of myself for sticking with it this week despite some weird circumstances. A snowstorm, subzero temperatures, a day off work which meant 4 days of working 9 hours shifts to make up some lost time, and a random mid-week meeting. I had some brutal workouts that kicked my butt, and I’m so glad I did it! Especially when I stepped on the scale this morning.

Before I share my finally weight loss for the week, tonight’s workout, like last night’s, was a change of pace for me. I spent 25 minutes doing weights and abs with lots of walking in between. My goals was to never stop moving. After a quick costume change, I went for a swim! Honestly, I’m not a swimmer. I can’t hold my breath under water and I have virtually no upper body strength. But tomorrow morning I’m running the Polar Dash 10k (6.2 miles)  in Chicago and I didn’t want to tire my running legs. So I thought I’d try something new. I was super slow but I managed to get in 24 laps in 20 minutes (the pool’s pretty small) before I was too tired and too creeped out by the young couple almost fooling around in the adjacent hot tub. No joke. Did they think I couldn’t see them??? Anyway, providing that couple doesn’t make another appearance, I’ll probably be adding swimming to my workout agenda every week or two.

Today has been difficult for eating. I haven’t overeaten, or binged, but for the first time in a week I actually wanted to. To compensate, I nixed the apple from my meal plan and had 240 calories of chocolate for dessert. Hey, at least it wasn’t a whole bag of chocolates! Next week, I’m going to make sure I plan a ton of protein and (healthy) fats into my diet. I think that as I started working out more, I got more hungry and had more cravings.

Alright, enough small talk. I’m sure you want to hear what my weight loss was one week in.

Drumroll, please.

5lbs!!

I lost 5 lbs this week! I can’t even believe it. I’m guessing most of that was water weight but I’ll take that huge headstart!

I was going to make some fancy chart or something to show my progress, but it’s late and I’m tired from all the working  out. Basically, these are the numbers: My overall calorie deficit was 6819 calories meaning I beat my goal of 5,950 calories by 15%. I still have 7 lbs left to lose, which I should be able to lose in just over 4 weeks if I continue on with my plan. I’ll probably plateau, but the thought of reaching my goal almost 3 weeks early has me really excited!

How did your week of workouts go? Anyone else shed some pounds?