Friday, October 29, 2010

Jitters

Ohmigosh! I'm really doing a 5k tomorrow.

What am I going to wear?

Where's the camera?

Where's the race, anyway?

!!!!!!

(deep breath)

Ok, got my list going of stuff to bring.

Lay out clothes tonight, make sure they're washed.

Got my handknit mitts done last night.

Okay, let's do this thing already!!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Revenge of the Treadmill

We've been having some really rough storms this week. The winds have been so strong, that I actually broke a door going into a restaurant! The wind took it out of my hands and it hit a brick wall (that it normally wouldn't hit) and shattered.

With this in mind, when I woke up Wednesday and heard the winds still blowing, I headed downstairs to the treadmill. I haven't been on it for quite awhile, and had to wait until my husband took off his computer equipment.

10 minutes in, I was sweating like it was summer. Maybe it was the warmer air inside, but I did feel as if I was putting in quite an effort. I did the 2 min run, 2 min walk routine. With these shorter runs, I can't get into the groove of running, though. The whole thing feels like effort and I was constantly checking my watch. In some ways, it almost feels like I should be on week 2 or 3 of the C25K program.

Not a great workout, but it's my last until the 5K. Tonight I'm going to walk 3.2 miles to let myself get the feel of that distance. But that's it, no more exercise until Saturday morning.

I'm not sure what you're supposed to do a week after a race, but I'll probably just let myself rest and do fun runs on Wednesday and Friday. I'm even thinking of trying an easy running program after the pressure of the 5K is off.

5k, here we come!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tired, but Happy Wings

Last night, we got ready for dinner and I was tired. There were 3-4 things on my "to do" schedule and I just wanted to sit on the couch and knit. But if I did that, then important things would not get done! So I went to hulu, put on a show and started in on the dishes. Within an hour, all my stuff was done and I was on the couch, knitting.

Tomorrow, our mission team is coming over. Normally, I'd be doing the "stash & hide" thing t and all these boxes or bags of misc junk would find their way into the craft room or bedroom. But not this time! All the main areas are mainly clutter free and fairly clean. I only need to mop floors and empty out a wastebasket or two. Easy, peasy. This is so wonderful, to just be able to relax and touch up a few things before company comes. I'll also have time to make some cookies.

Monday, October 25, 2010

This is SO Not the Way to Get Ready for a 5K

Last week I only ran once, you could say I started my taper early. With the garage sale, I was just strapped for time and tired. I'm back at it again this week now with a run this morning. Since it had been a little while, I decided to be nice to myself and take it slow; 2 minute run, 2 minute walk for 1/2 hour.

And then, I thought, why not run the 5k this way? I timed myself and I did about a 14 minute mile this way. At that rate, I could do about a 45 minute 5K and not wear myself out. I also think it might work for my friend who isn't as fit for running. She could probably walk as fast as I run sometimes, so it could all work out fine.

I'll run again on Wednesday and then take off until Saturday. The forecast had a possibility of snow and high of 30 something. I'll have to see if I can find my long underwear and see how it feels running in that. I suppose I have to figure out what to wear on Saturday too.

The Looming 5k
Man, I'm a little unsure about this first 5k. This morning I woke up from bad dreams!

In my dream, we were in some sort of stadium waiting for people to show up. None of my family had come, and the 20 seats that I had reserved kept getting filled by other people until I thought, "forget about it then, they can find their own seats." And then, I went somewhere to get a drink of water and the race started without me! I ran toward the race and couldn't find the starting line. By the time I got to the starting line of sorts, the second wave event had started which was motor bikes and skateboarders. I had to dodge these guys while running through muddy tracks and not seeing a runner in sight.

Well, with that bad experience out of the way, my 5K should be a breeze.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Tromping Through Leaves

I was tromping through leaves this morning, they do accumulate a bit on the side of the roads. My feet make a distinct sound anyway without leaves. The trees are almost bare but have not taken on the stark dead look yet. I am becoming more aware of seasons passing while going outside 3X a week.

I passed a group of walking senior ladies twice. I see them often if I leave from home at a consistent time. Their feet make no sound! They are tromping through leaves, they're just chatting. The first time I see them is as I'm walking my warm up. The next time is during my first run. I wonder what I'll be like at their age; will I still be running? Will I have a group of girlfriends to walk with? And then I thought, I wonder if I had waited another 10 years to get in shape? Would I still be here or even able to do such a thing as a whim? Or need strict doctor supervision because of maybe getting diabetes or heart disease?

This morning I was thankful for the freedom of possibilities. That there is really nothing holding me back from eventual success in anything I want to do (within reason of course, I still can't fly or freeze time). I have a fairly good support system of people to cheer me on, or if I tell them to cheer me, they'll do it. I am very fortunate for being in this place, at this time. So I tromp through leaves; the things trees shed to prepare for the next season. And I shed a little more of my past to go toward my next season.

The Run & Upcoming 5K
I didn't push myself, much. Managed to run about 13-14 minutes worth, about a mile or so. I've also been getting ready for a garage sale this week, so I have been physically tired. Wednesday, the start of the sale is also my next scheduled run. I may just do a shorter run then. My concern is, this is the last week before the 5k and my training is limited. But I'm slowly getting accustomed to the thought of being last. But not to worry, I won't be last by myself!

My friend, Cris called me Friday. She started talking about running with me in the 5K and I did a mental facepalm. Mentally, I had already given up on running it. But now she reminded me that she was planning on running with me. I told her that I didn't feel ready, since she had said she wasn't doing so well. Instead of her saying let's forget it (like I wanted her to) she sealed the deal.

"We'll walk and run it together."

And so, now I won't feel so alone in being the last one on the course. I figure if we look like we're having a fun time which we have a tendency to do, then everyone else may wish they'd ran slower. Also, we talk a lot when we're together, so we'll need our breath for the chatting, not the running! But seriously, I am glad that I have a friend to go through this with me. She mentioned she can't do more than 1/4 more, so SCORE!! I am a little farther than her in the distance department, although it's slow. We should be able to somehow adjust our run/walk. Mentally, I'm back in the race and will be fine with however I can do it.

After the 5K, I'm not sure what I'll do about running. I still want to do the 3x's a week thing. But it's getting so cold out. The thought of the treadmill is so boring to me. Maybe join the gym - but then that's driving somewhere. It's so easy to just put on shoes and do it.

Pause.

Did I just say..."It's so easy to just put on shoes and do it?"

You can't see me, but I'm laughing. Just a few months ago, that wasn't easy. So, I'm going to stop thinking about after the 5k.

Changes
Skip this part if you don't want to hear me talking about fat. Anyway, my body is still changing. That one little spare tire I had is almost gone, I can barely pinch it now. However, I noticed this morning that I'm getting another crease, it's like the fat is folding in half. Yuck! I know it sounds gross and sorry to tell you all about it. But why I mention it at all, is that as gross as it is, these changes are because the fat is melting away. Eventually it'll be a good things. It is sorta interesting to see what my body does with the changes. My weight hasn't gone down very much, but I have been getting a lot of compliments on how I look, even how I stand differently.

Changes are happening. This week, I can tromp through leaves. But next week, I may be tromping through snow. Life is so seasonal.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Rebooting

I ran again yesterday but wasn't able to get my goals. In fact, I ran about 3/4 of what I did on Monday. I've been thinking about what Barefoot Fresca had commented on from Monday's post.

How do I want to do this 5K?

Why do I want to do it?

And why, after 4 months of running, can't I go 1/2 mile yet? Am I really that out of shape, or is it a mental block?

Why?
I'll answer the 2nd first. I don't really want to do the 5K. I really only want to run one, if I can run one. And before I started running, the 5K was the only thing I really knew about to test yourself. But without a goal to motivate me, I won't have a driving reason to be consistent and push myself. However, I'm wondering if running itself has become a habit enough without a 5K motivator. I've thought about dropping out of the race, or seeing if they'd let me run one in the spring instead.

How?
If I do run this, how? On my last run, I thought that it's ridiculous to have the goal of running 3/4 mile increments in 3 weeks when I can't quite do 1/2 mile yet. So, why not go in 1/2 mile increments? I'm very close to being there, within 1-2 tenth. Run 1/2 mile, walk for a couple minutes, repeat. It may mean that I'll be the very last person to finish, but if that's what needs to happen, then so be it.

The Elusive 1/2 Mile
Finally, why can't I do 1/2 mile yet? I'm not sure. I do seem to be inching up in progress each week I go out. However, whenever I make out new running plans I don't attain them. I sat down Wednesday and did the math on this last plan I put together. There's an adage where you're only supposed to add 10% to your training each week. Well, I was adding 10% 3 times a week! No wonder I was so exhausted.

For now, I'm going to take a break and not run until Monday. My body is still a little sore and I'm unusually cranky and short fused. Both signs of overtraining, or so I've read. How I feel on Monday will really decide how I race. Or not.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Flying and Limping

FLYing
Well, I've managed to get through FLYLady babysteps through day 25...in about 2 weeks. Some of the days are no brainers for me like get up and dressed every morning, read something, etc. So I skip and do 2 days. But I'm wondering if I should've just done one day at a time and was thankful that it was easy. Because now that I have the FLY schedule thing going, it's feeling overwhelming. I didn't have the time in between to get used to it and gradually add things in.

So, like usual, I'm modifying. I like the zone ideas, but I don't like that it switches each week when I'm decluttering. I've decided to just declutter in order of the Zones, maybe up to a month if it's really bad or I'm busy. (sounds kind of like the house diet program I tried to start). I'll still do the Hot Spots 2x a day in the places that have been cleaned out, laundry load a day, Home blessings and some other small things that I can do each day. But for the 15 minute things, I'm decluttering in the zone.

That leaves me with the issue of having a clean house, if I may not get to the downstairs bathroom until about February. Eww. What I'll do, is I'll combine the 5 Minute Room Rescue with the Zones. I'll clean in the Zone for that week for 5 minutes a day. That way, I'll be able to keep up with having things clean or at least presentable.

I like this idea because it enables me to complete an area and do a whole house clean while keeping things up. I also won't have to switch to a new place each week and have to remember where I left off. I've made such progress in the kitchen already! The area under the desk is cleaned out and only a couple necessary things remain. I wish I would've taken a before & after picture!

Storage?
IKEA is currently my favorite store, at least for dreaming. I've been looking at getting some storage things and such but have decided NOT TO BUY MORE STORAGE CONTAINERS. Instead, I'll get rid of stuff and maybe empty out some storage places and containers and use them where they're needed. I do have plans though, and they include a trip to IKEA.

My husband took the initiative to look for closet organizers last night. I was pleasantly surprised! Perhaps my new cleaning mode has inspired him. We haven't figured out yet what we'll do with these 70's style reach in closets.

Garage Sale
Next week is the garage sale. In a way, I wish I wasn't having one because of all the time and energy they take. But in another way, I'm glad I'll be able to make some money off all this stuff we've accumulated. I'm trying not to have much in there under $ .25 and just donating that little junk and dated stuff to charity. If it's only worth that little to me, why put the effort into displaying and selling it? And if it's not worth more than a quarter to me or someone else, why am I keeping it?

I am hoping to sell about $400 worth and maybe get a new sofa for the living room. If all goes well, I'll have another sale next year. If not, then freecycle and the charity pick-up will be at the top of my list.

Oops! It's past time for me to get ready for bed. Time to make sure the sink is shined and my clothes are laid out for tomorrow. Babysteps, babysteps.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Weeble Wobble

I'm ready for a nap or for a massage or something because today was my most grueling workout yet.

Maybe it was because I was tired all weekend, not getting enough sleep. Or that my legs felt stiff and puffy yesterday. Or that I hadn't run for 2 days when I was supposed to run yeterday. Whatever the reason, it was hard work.

The Run
7 Minute Run. Looks like a lot to me, but I just went for it, no problem. When I did my recovery walk, I only needed 5 minutes to make it up to the top of the big hill.

9 Minute Run. Started off well. As I got to the bottom of the hill, it suddenly dawned on me that there was a slight incline all the way up to almost my next run start. So I thought, what is better; a long, slight incline or one big hill? I prayed through the Lord's Prayer again and was 2 minutes short and still going up that incline. The street is a busier one and I felt very self conscious with my crippled turtle run. I slowed to a fast walk for a block and then got on the straightaway and did another 30 second run. I only managed to do about 8 minutes and my legs were rubber.

6 Minute Run. I walked the 4 minutes and went past the start of the run to the next street and back - my first route increase! The last 6 were fairly easy and I actually went 6 3/4 to make up a little for the previous run. I could've kept going, but I needed my recovery walk time. As it was, I only had 2-3 minute of that.

When I was done, I was ready to crawl back into bed. I managed to stumble around and get ready for work but my husband just looked at me and shook his head.

I think I'll change up my route for Wednesday. Right now, it's like a weird Y shape. So I'll take the right side of the Y first and have my long run on more of the straight and decline areas. I really hope the 5K doesn't have too many big hills.

The Looming 5K
I was looking at my training schedule and realized that I only have TWO WEEKS to really prepare for the 5K. The week before I put in fun short fartlek runs to taper down to it. Do I need to taper for my 5k? I'm not sure, but it sounda like a good idea.

I really don't know if I'm going to be ready for this. Can I really do it when I couldn't run 9 minutes today? My 2 mile run seems so small compared to what I'm going to need to do. Why didn't I sign up for the Turkey Trot 5K and give myself another month?

But maybe, I'd be like this no matter when the 5k was. Sort of like cramming for a final. I always did this! Would have fun on the journey and then all of a sudden have to get serious and knuckle down. The sooner this is over with, the sooner the pressure is off and I can run just for fun again. Not that this isn't fun sometimes, but if every morning was like this, I probably wound't be a runner.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Cobwebs, dirt and bugs, oh my!

This morning, we cleaned through the garage. It wasn't an entire clean through, but re-organizing and clearing out of the corners. Things got moved to better places, the place was swept out, I even took a broom and got rid of the cobwebs on the walls and doors. All the while, feeling like Pigpen from Peanuts. The boxes are still on the shelves and the equipment and things are still in their unorganized drawers. But we got through the area and it looks so much better! The only thing left is to dispose of the old toilet. Next Saturday I'll be able to set up tables and start getting ready for the garage sale.

Next up is laundry. I have a laundry basket that keeps getting filled with cleanish clothes in the bedroom. I think that if I had a perfect closet system for my husband, it would involve baskets to throw his clothes in! So today I'm going to empty out the basket and put everything away. Now, I do this every couple of months but it doesn't seem to solve the problem. However, I'm hopeful that the FLYLady's system will help in this area.

She suggests doing a load every day. I grew up thinking that you spent one day doing laundry and doing all of it! This continued at college and when we lived in an apartment, because you had multiple washers & dryers. You'd go until you had hardly anything left to wear and then wash it all. Usually, I let it accumulate into we had a few loads and then we'd spend the evening folding while watching a game or a movie. But to do 1 load complete every day? That might just actually work.

I like this because:
  • It won't take as much time to do 1 load as opposed to 4
  • I won't have to wait for a large block of time before doing some and can keep up easily
  • We don't have enough laundry in a week to do one load every day, so it won't be every day
  • I won't have those hanger-oners things to wash that always seem to be in the bottom of the dirty basket but never get washed (I hope)
So, I'm going to add 1 load of laundry to my schedule. I probably only need to put it into 3 days, and 1 on Saturday for the dog. Time will tell if this is the key for easier laundry.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Digging Deeper

Each run, I'm increasing each of my 3 run segments by a minute. Today, I started off with 6, then 8, then 5. I'm finding that not only do I need more recovery walk between runs, but it's more than that. It's also because I want to get to the top of the hills before starting my run! So, if I stick to the same route until the 5k, then I'll be able to naturally decrease recovery time as my runs get longer. I do have alternative streets to increase my runs as well. It'll be fun to see how much farther I can go each time.

During my long run, I decided to go through the Lord's prayer to keep my mind off of what I was doing. It totally worked! By the time I had prayed and expanded parts, I was about a minute shy of my time. I think having some sort of structured thoughts to go through during the runs may be good for my mind games. I could memorize a verse, a poem, some famous sayings.

I make it up an incline to an open area and my breath caught (and not because of running). There was a lovely orange/pink glow in the background, framed by chocolate brown tree trunks and gold and orange leaves. It's one of those moments that can't be captured in a photo or even words. Something to soak up for the long winter ahead.

On my last 5 minute run, I got to a steep (to me) hill. Instead of slowing to the pace of a crippled turtle, I told myself, "dig deeper, dig deeper." I did, and I went up that hill at a jog. It was a Rocky Balboa moment! Or something like that.

Onward
I've decided to change my training from M-W-F to every other day until the 5k. And dangit, I just remember I was going to knit a hat or crown or something for the occasion! May have to go and hunt up a pattern and yarn. And I'm still not sure what I'll wear, the weather is so changeable.

Tonight I'm getting together with the Norman women (in-laws). When we last got together, I asked them all if they'd consider running a 5K with me next year. D, because of hip issues, is going to train to walk one. J is currently training for her first 5K on Jan 1. MIL is not training, but will cheer us on, I'm sure. I'm looking forward to catching up with them. And so amazed that we three are working on these goals.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

House Diet Stats

I'm retiring the House Diet, but recording the last stats that I had on my sidebar.

The house has lost:

40# - garbage & recyclables
57# - for charity

= 97# Lost!

(updated 2/23/10)


Not too shabby for 2 months work! And I KNOW the house has lost more than that as well.

Ch-Ch-Changes

What happened to the house diet, you may ask? Well, no one is asking, but I'll tell you anyway.

I fell off the house diet awhile ago. Got to my craft room and man, it's still not right. That room needs a forklift or something more and it derailed me. But...I didn't stop doing stuff. I decided that what was really needed was to simplify my life, my house.

Clothes Cull
I read a book about Elegance and how you shouldn't keep clothes that didn't suit you, didn't make you look good. Although I'm not planning on buying Chanel or Hermes anytime soon, I was able to do a huge cull of my closet. I had thought after I was done that I needed then to go shopping to fill up the holes in my wardrobe. But you know what? I have less than 2 weeks of outfits now and it's working just fine. It's easier to do laundry, to choose what to wear and it's less clutter in my mind.

A few years ago I heard a lady say that she had streamlined her wardrobe by only wearing one color - cream. Because of that, she only needed a couple pairs of shoes, and everything matched. That inspired me to cut out different colors of pants such as navy or red, etc. I've gone another step further now, and am cutting out brown. I am now only going with black, cream and khaki for pants/skirts and letting my shirts be the color. This is going to help when I buy shoes and accessories as well.

And lastly, I've streamlined my jewelry. I've been wearing the same pair of earrings for the last couple of months! I remembered a lady I worked for did that. Of course hers were gold and diamond, but hey, we work with what we got. I wear the same bracelet as well. Sometimes I'll change my necklace if I want to wear one. So someday soon, I'll be culling my jewelry. I really don't need a drawerful when all I really need is one or two of each.

Quality, not quantity.

In Other News
This summer, I've started to run, which you can read about here. In a way, it's a form of simplifying. It's causing me to get up early in the mornings and my schedule is different now.

I've also started to FLY with the FLYLady. There's a bit more of stuff to talk about there, so I'll save it for a new post.

In summary, I'm continuing to go forward with my life; decluttering, better health, simplifying. I was emailing a couple friends about why this is happening now. For many years, I've wanted to make these changes but haven't. And now they're happening and it's not such a struggle.

The reason why I think this is happening now is simple. In the last couple of years, I've truly been able to see a better picture of how God sees me. Just as I am, overweight, disorganized, sinful...he loves me. I can't do ANYTHING that could increase that love. All he really desires right now is me to just BE with him. Not DO something for Him. It doesn't matter if I go to church, Sunday School, Bible Studies, humanitarian efforts, etc. What he really wants is me to just sit with him and enjoy my company. (This is a bit simplified, but you get the picture.)

I've been able to accept this truth. For years, I've KNOWN it, but couldn't experience it. Now that the truth has become a part of who I am, I am able to really accept myself the same way. And in really accepting myself where I am right now (not where I'd like to be or what I'd like to look like), I am able to make the changes that I want to. I am so darn comfortable in my skin now, that there's less head baggage. There's now room to just go ahead and make changes just becase I want to.

I make the changes not because I want to be the person on the other side of the changes, but because I am taking the person that I totally love and accept now on that journey.

Ufdah, that's a mouthful! But it's a mouthful of truth.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Turtle Run

My runs are getting a titch longer but the route that I'm on now is a bit shorter. What that means is, I have a shorter recovery walk time. I still need a little more time (1-2 minutes) of recovery walking between runs. I am hoping that will change as I progress.

After about 3 minutes of running, I get into a sort of groove where my feet just take over and keep going. It only happens, though, when I'm not thinking about running and how many more minutes/seconds to go. And finally, today, I was able to concentrate my thoughts instead of having them go around like a pinball. I was actually able to pray something more than, "help!" and for a minute or two, it was controlled thoughts. I count this as big progress.

I am also a little less conscious of my turtle running. Sometimes, when a car comes, I pretend to be the hare and increase my effort but it really throws off the groove that I'm in. So I'm learning to just accept that I run like a turtle. People can laugh or think badly about my pace, but hey - I'm out there running. This is where I'm at, and I'm happy about that.

Cool Down
On my cool down walk, I turned down the street I live on, which had been re-paved yesterday. My right arch was achy so I thought, why not? I had already decided the socks were going in the trash (it was dark in the bedroom when I fished them out). So I stopped, unlaced my shoes and walked the rest of the way home in my socks.

Instantly, everything felt changed and different muscles were working. The ground was cool and pleasant and smooth. I concentrated on my mid-foot strike and pushing off more and not overstriding. A car passed and I acted like carrying running shoes and waking down the street in socks was what everyone does nowadays. I really liked how the road felt and how my feet felt. My right calf was tighter but my arch stopped aching. By the time I was home, everything was feeling good except where I picked up a pebble for a few steps.

I think that I'd like to do more of this kind of training after my 5k. Although it'll be colder out by then, I may be able to find a more minimal shoe or slipper to go around in. I really do not like what my running shoes are doing to my feet! Just 16 minutes of running and they make my feet ache. How will I get through 45 minutes of the 5k? Hmmm.

Monday, October 4, 2010

In Which My Training Switches Gears

This morning was the day that I really kicked my training into gear. Just for this month, I'm putting aside my fun fartlek runs, my "let's see what I can do" runs and gear up for the 5K. I do like the fact that I have a good plan in place to be able to run/walk about a 45 minute 5k. It is very doable and is not overwhelming (as long as I don't look at what I'm supposed to do next week). What I am fearful about is that I will lose interest or have a set back and won't be able to complete it. I have to, have to, have to do this training schedule!

My next step while doing this, is adding better nutrition and eating habits. I keep losing and gaining the same 7 pounds. This morning I was up near my starting weight again (nevermind that I had a great cheeseburger yesterday). Although I've never been one to fluctuate my weight this much, so I know something is happening in my body.

My stomach continues to sag and the creases are more pronounced. In one way, this is very interesting; to see how the fat is melting away. But in another way it's kinda gross to see flabby floppy parts. I'll spare you the details. I don't even like looking at this part.

Anyway, I'm going to explore better nutrition and eating habits now. Funny thing is, though, I haven't really had cravings for food like I used to. When I think about what I want for dinner, I really don't care. Used to be that I would have a definite craving or idea. But now? Meh.