Thursday, October 28, 2010
I have been thinking about the update I need to give on my Healthier Me initiative. I keep rolling thoughts around in my head of what I want to tell you but my challenge is trying to figure out how I'm feeling or what I'm doing or why. Back in April- just 6 weeks into this healthier way of living- I blogged about the Stages of Change. At the time, I was firmly in the Action stage. I was gung ho and sticking to my plan for activity and for food. I remember writing the bit about the Maintenance phase- you reach it after 6 months of consistent activity. I remember thinking "6 months? That means doing this through August... I'm really not sure I'll make it." Well, I've made it. The good thing about the Stages of Change is that they are fluid and you move through them and back and forth and in and out of them. In some ways, I am in the Maintenance phase. I am getting exercise regularly. I haven't quit running and I'm not back to just lounging around at any given chance. In some ways, I've slid back to Contemplation. I'm doing a lot of thinking about the things I'm not doing right and trying to figure out why. My struggles: - Eating. My diet is not as awesome as it once was. I miss it but not enough to get right back into it. I'm doing ok. I'm not binging. I'm not going back to junk and fast food. I've not indulged in a Big Mac or anything. But I am eating mindlessly and I am snacking as an emotional response and I am eating for the wrong reasons. And when I do those things, I end up down a path that ends with junky, crappy, processed foods a good percentage of the time. - Running. My schedule has been a bit hectic lately and it threw me off my goals. Ashli's 500 Mile Challenge is keeping me going but I'm not hitting my goals. More than that, I'm not thrilled with my running ability or performance. I have no idea what the issue is or what challenge I'm not overcoming. I was doing so well before that knee thing hit before my 5K back in June. I don't think I'm scared of injury now. But I'm having a hard time getting back to where I was. In addition, my motivation has changed. I had been gunning for the goal of running a 5K with no walking intervals. Now... I'm really ok with running as much as I can and walking when I need to walk. I know I can finish a 5K and my time just isn't much of a concern to me. I'll be honest- I think I need to find a running partner more at my level. It's hard when my running partner is constantly achieving more and I'm plodding along. We hit the treadmill and my mile is her 1.5 miles and my 1.5 miles is her 2.5 miles and when I quit after 2 miles, she does 3. When we run together in a neighborhood or on a path, even if we start together, she is quickly gone and (sometimes literally) running laps around me. I love that she is succeeding and overcoming her obstacles. It's just hard being left behind. - Cross training. Isn't happening as much as it should. I've been a lot more focused on running and haven't been doing my strength training as much as I should. My successes: - Those jeans that I wore for 1 day and then had to go back for the smaller size. Major success! And that isn't unusual. I'm not gaining any fat as I slack off. My weight on the scale has gone back up a bit. But my clothes are fitting the same or better. My first pair of running pants are about to be too big and I love noticing how loose they feel every time I pull them on. because of how my clothes continue to fit and continue to feel more and more loose, I'd say that the focus I had on cross training and strength traing in July, August, and September led to muscle gain. - I haven't flat out quit any part of this. While part of me is sometimes tempted to throw in the towel and grab that gallon of ice cream and chocolate syrup and put on some old fat pants and sit on the couch... while part of me is tempted to take my lunch hour and run errands or go out to eat with friends or just sit on my booty at my computer... while part of me wants to skip the salad and go for a juicy double cheeseburger at Wendy's... the better part of me is still making mostly good choices. The thing about living a healthy lifestyle is that it has to be a long term commitment. This was never about losing a certain number of pounds or getting to a certain size and then quitting my efforts. This isn't a sprint or a race or a short jog around the block. This is a marathon and I have the entire race course to myself. Others might intersect on my marathon course from time to time as they stride towards their own goals. But I have to make the choices that keep me on course. There will be water breaks and potty stops and times that I stop to stretch or massage my muscles. But that doesn't mean I've reached the finish line. Here are my goals. I am doing a 5K on November 6. I am running a virtual 5K on the weekend of Dec 4 as part of the 500 Mile Challenge we started on DailyMile. In January, I will train to run a 10K. I haven't selected a race yet but I'm thinking I'll do one in March. After the 10K, I will start training to run a half marathon. I plan to run the Mini Marathon (part of the 500 Festival- a car racing thing here in Indy) at the end of May. I'm not ready to set any food goals right now. Once I hit that preparation stage again, I'll be sure to share it here. I'm searching for my motivation, my spark. I want to get back to that crazy healthy eating that was loaded with fruits and veggies. I'm not back to that point just yet and I'm working on figuring out why. And just to show you how much I'm still getting something positive from my workouts... here is a picture of me right after getting off the treadmill after my lunch hour workout.
I'm gonna subscribe with no comment since Weight Watchers hasn't been happening for me lately....
If you are doing the Mini - might I suggest that you sign up with the Running Company mini training group (It's a $40 one time fee and you're a member for life)- it starts in January. Then, if you are doing the mini- they have training races along the way that you can sign up for- which is great for benchmarking your progress, they have a 5K in Feb, a 10K in March and a 15K in April.
The nice part about TRC training group is that there are ALL paces from walking to walk/run to fast runners. They don't focus on miles though- they focus on time - everyone does 40 minutes (for example) - regardless of how far that takes you. I'll be doing it again- even if I don't do the mini, great training for my June race up north.
And as for the food- I hear you. It is always my one struggle. I'm a foodie - healthy and non-healthy food. Thank god I found fitness again or I'd be in real trouble. I've lost 65 lbs this year- but I'm completely stalled out right now- and I KNOW it is my own doing- I have to start eating smarter again.
We can do it!
You might have me convinced on TRC's training program. I've looked at it but haven't committed to it. But having that to start in January would be perfect.
Garret- there is a point in the process where you start to maintain what you've succeeded in doing. You lost a lot very quickly. As long as you are mostly maintaining it and keeping some focus on healthy choices (for food and activity), I'd say you're doing just fine. Plus, your new glasses make you look skinny!
I think that's the key to the success of this thing, Liz...we may slack off a bit, but we get back to it. We know what works, and what WE need to do in order to succeed with keeping the weight off. What works for you may not work for me and vice versa. However, it's important to know how far one has come and not let a day or two (or three) of slacking turn into reverting to old habits.
You're doing fine...blogging keeps it real for you, so I can't see you reverting ever...you're good to go, lady!
Hi, Liz! Great update. A couple of comments from me....
*Hubs is a runner but we don't train together. The primary reason is because one of us is always with the kids...but also, his 5K time is under 24 minutes, and mine's under 34 minutes...so we'd both be frustrated running together! I totally hear you there.
*If you are going to train for longer races, I'll give you some advice based on my experience. Give yourself a LOOOONG time to get your distance up. Honestly, my half marathon training right now is hard on my body, even though I've generally stuck to the 10% or less increase/week "rule." I think I'd be handling it better, with fewer aches & pains and mild-/near-injuries, if I was increasing my mileage more slowly, say 3% a week. So maybe consider coming up with a training schedule for that 10K now. That would give you 4+ months to train for a March 10K. You could increase your mileage slowly enough to be a lot more gentle on your body.
You're doing great. :)
I'm having a real hard time staying on Nutrisystem. Too much non NS food keeping whispering to me when I'm home alone.
I think everyone goes through the phases. I'm in the lazy stage right now, but the scale is still my friend, so I'm good with it. Keep up the good work! :)
Happiness is clothes that were once tight, be moved to the "too big" pile. Keep it up :)
It's hard. I've really succumbed to stress and slid back into a lot of my old habits. Good for you for keep on keeping on. Monday, I'm back to the gym!
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