Archive | March 2014

Wednesday Weigh In: Wrong Way

Up a whole pound this morning.

At first blush, I’m surprised.  My numbers have been trending lower most of the week so I am honestly surprised at the gain.

But when I think about the last week, I probably shouldn’t be.  I have definitely let the wine back into my world.  I’m back up to drinking a glass pretty much every day, which I have not been doing for the last four weeks.  And the problem with wine is that it leads to other things:  two days ago, after drinking a few glasses, I found the Thin Mint cookies that had been pushed to the back of the fridge.  They’re not even my favorite anything, but somehow, they ended up in my stomach.  More than one.  More than five, let’s just put it that way.

The other thing I know is that yesterday was quite possibly a “salty” day.  I had canned soup for lunch, and made roasted vegetables for dinner.  I knew they were on the salty side when I tasted them.  I have to really work on that.  I ate out for lunch two days ago and that was also likely a “salty” meal, as all restaurant meals tend to be.

On the plus side, I had great runs this week, good workouts.  I also went dress shopping yesterday and found a lovely, very fitted Calvin Klein dress in a size 8 that fit absolutely perfectly.  So those are positives I will hold onto.

Overall I still feel that I am on the right track, know what I am doing well, and that this is a blip on the radar that I’m not going to let derail me.

Current Week: +1 lbs
Total Weight Left To Lose:  9.8 lbs
Age:  43
BMI:  27.3


Race Recap: Sandy Ground 5K for James Mattioli

It was a beautiful day for a race.

This weekend I was humbled to be a part of another race that tried to harness the good in people that has surfaced out of the awful tragedy at Sandy Hook.  Each time I’ve been a part of one of these events, I am always amazed.  Amazed at people’s spirit.  Resiliency.  Ability to rise above the awfulness that happened on that December day fifteen months ago.

Today’s race benefited the Sandy Ground project.  This group has been building playgrounds all up and down the East Coast in areas that were impacted and damaged by hurricane Sandy.  Each one honors one of the Sandy Hook victims.  Today’s race was held in the area that the playground for James Mattioli was built, in Milford, CT.  I was present last week as they started construction, and after today’s race there was a ribbon cutting.  It’s already finished.

I headed down early this morning because I’d heard there were over 900 people preregistered, a larger amount than the planners had originally counted on.  It took me a few minutes to find parking but all in all, I was able to park fairly close to the start of the race.  I tried to be close because it was cold, but I knew it would warm up by the race start, and I wanted to be able to dump my fleece back in the car.

It didn’t take me long to find people I knew waiting for the race start.  I met and chatted with a few women I knew until my good girlfriend and usual race partner showed up.  She had brought her whole family with her; she knows James’ mother.  It was nice to see so many families present today, all there to try and give something good to this family that has lost so much.  I hope when these families come to events like these and see the outpouring of love and support, that somehow it helps in some way.

There was plenty of food and drink out prior to the race, which I was impressed with.  Normally races don’t offer much besides water in plastic cups prior to a race.  We all powered up and before long it was time to dump my fleece and head to the start.  By now the sun was shining and it was a gorgeous late winter/early spring morning.

We lined up in front of the local firehouse, festooned with a banner announcing the race, and began.  Everyone I knew got lost in the crowd, and I honed in and tried to find my pace.  I had my tunes on, the sun was shining, people were happy, and I felt really good.

I mean, really good.  Before long we were a mile in. I realized how much I was enjoying this run.  We were in the coastal part of town…and the route was super flat.  Very few hills anywhere.  I ran past the water stop; I’d noted that each of my fastest races were the 5Ks where I didn’t stop for water.  I normally run 3 miles at home without hydration, so I’d told myself I wasn’t going to stop.

I was still feeling good at mile 2, but it wasn’t as great a feeling as the previous one.  I tried to adjust my pace because I didn’t want to run out of steam.  I wanted this to be a good race.  I had in my head the goal of finishing under 36 minutes; I’ve only had 3 races below that time.  Two were 35:50 something, and the third was my PR time of 35:33 (which was a year ago this month).  I hoped to get under the two, but didn’t think a new PR was possible.

The route meandered down near the water and I sighed.  What a beautiful course.  I love races near the water.  I felt a peace come over me and just felt so fortunate, so blessed to be here.  To have a body that can run, no matter how fast or slow.  To have a family that understands this push I have to run races, to help charities, to do things for others.  To have a life that includes so many wonderful people and experiences.  It was a beautiful moment.  I kept on.

Somewhere after mile 2.5 I noticed one of the women I’d been chatting with before the race was just ahead of me.  She had said her goal was to hit below 35 minutes.  I figured I had to be doing fairly well if I could see her, as she’d started out ahead of me. As we kept going, I realized I was getting closer to her.  I wondered if somehow, I’d be able to pass her.

As we neared the three mile mark, she was in my sights.  I knew that I’d be able to do it if she didn’t speed up too much.  I heard the 35 minute chime in my earbuds and knew if I really pushed it I could potentially PR this race.  I ran as fast as I could for that last 0.1 mile.  I passed her, and saw the time clock read 35:38 as I crossed the line.

I knew it had to be either a PR or very close, since it took me a bit to cross the starting line when the race began.  I stopped my RunKeeper, trying to tell myself that no matter what I’d run a good race.  I was well below 36, which had been my goal.  I was within seconds either way of the PR, which I hadn’t thought was possible.  It was all good.

I met my friends at the finish line, chatted quickly, and had to run off to my daughter’s play at school this afternoon.  I’d so wanted to stay and watch the playground be dedicated, and look to see the finished product of what I’d seen started, but I had to go back to my family and my world.

When I got home, the race results were already posted.  And there it was, a brand new shiny PR:


It was a beautiful day for a race.

Wednesday Weigh In

I think this week’s weigh in is one of those where it’s actually really reflecting more than just this week.  I had been surprised at last week’s gain, because mostly things had been going well.  So this week’s bigger drop than usual is likely more reflective of long term changes than a bang up week.

I lost two pounds this week.

There have been a few things I’ve noticed.  A few weeks ago when we started our bootcamp challenge, we were trying all stick to the 1200 calories a day, no matter how much we exercised.  But the weight didn’t seem to be moving for several of us in the challenge.  We were all doing exercise outside of class too:  either spinning or running or something else.

Each one of us started slowly increasing our calorie intake, essentially eating back the calories we burned for a net of 1200 a day.  Meaning, if I burned 400 calories running that day, I’d aim for 1600 calories instead of the 1200, to account for that calorie burn.

Overall, it seems to be working for most of us who are in on this weight loss challenge.

I am definitely eating more cleanly, more vegetables and protein, being better about the carbs.  I am definitely drinking less (though not teetotalling entirely as I had vowed after my stomach bug).  For now, things seem to be finally moving along after two years of slowly struggling with a pound here and a pound there.  I know part of it is the support of having ten other women working towards this with me at the same time.

This week?  This feels good.

Current Week: – 2 lbs
Total Weight Left To Lose:  8.8 lbs
Age:  43
BMI:  27.1 (can’t wait for this number to be in the 26s, the last one to conquer before a healthy BMI!)

Wednesday Weigh In

Disappointed that my weigh in this morning showed a gain of 0.6 again this week.  I’m surprised by it but not discouraged.

I have spent the last three days traveling and visiting with my new baby granddaughter, and that brought about challenges.  I was not able to exercise at all.  There was mostly sitting around in a hospital room (I am NOT complaining, my sweet baby granddaughter is amazing and I cherished every second!).  And while I made excellent choices in the hospital cafeteria and on the road (travel day one:  veggie wrap, hospital day one:  chef’s salad with dressing on the side, hospital/travel day two:  turkey wrap), the dinners were made for me by my out of town hosts and they weren’t the healthiest choices.  I also likely overate a bit in the days leading up to the event, as my in laws were here (to take care of my own younger kids when the baby call finally came) and they cook heavier meals and pour wine with all of them.

So it is what it is.  I’m up a bit, but now I’m back and ready to get back on the wagon (literally) and drop some more pounds.

Current Week: +0..6 lbs
Total Weight Left To Lose:  10.8 lbs
Age:  43
BMI:  27.5

Wednesday Weigh In

I am truly baffled by my gain this week.  My weight is up this week, 0.6 lbs.

I have been meticulously logging my food intake since starting my bootcamp weight loss challenge last week.  I have been faithfully hovering at just under or just over 1200 calories (most days just under) every single day, no matter my activity level.  I have exercised every single day since last Wednesday.  I have significantly reduced my alcohol consumption.

In other words, this should have been a killer week on the scale.

My only guess is that somehow, my loss last week was exaggerated by the stomach flu I had just recovered from (which I suppose is possible).  Or that there was a little too much salt in the food that I ate last night.  Or that after having gone a week without significant exercise, I am holding water while building back some muscle.  There could be a myriad of reasons why the scale is up rather than down.

This exact same thing happened to one of my fellow bootcampers this week.  She’d done all of the same things, and was actually up two whole pounds.  She was incredibly discouraged at class on Monday, and I consoled her by telling her that her hard work wasn’t for nothing.  That likely the numbers would rebound on the scale next week.  To keep plugging away at it despite the strange response from the scale.

And so I will do the same myself.

Current Week: +0..6 lbs
Total Weight Left To Lose:  10.2 lbs
Age:  43
BMI:  27.4

Shamrock and Roll Race Recap

This is the third time that I’ve run this race.  Since I’ve only been running for two and a half years, it is the only race I’ve ever run three times.  I hadn’t signed up until just two days ago, not sure that my schedule would be open today or not.  When it looked like this weekend was clear, I bit the bullet and signed up.

I posted about it on Facebook, and a friend that I’ve recently met through running offered to go with me.  I was super excited because this is a fun race, the kind of race you want to share with a friend or a group.  Each time I’ve run it, I’ve run it alone, always thinking how great it would be to have a friend there.  She and I made plans to meet up and drive in together (it’s a big race so parking is tough) this morning.

I honestly wasn’t sure how it was going to go, riding in with my new friend.  I don’t know her well, although every time we’ve spent any time together, we’ve gotten along really well.  And sure enough, we clicked right from the start of our time together.  We both love the energy of a race and try to do them as often as we can.  She’s faster than me but not crazy fast, so it didn’t feel like I was hanging out with someone terribly out of my league.

We got there early enough to find a good parking spot, grab our race bibs and shirts, and have plenty of time to chat in the warmth of the car before heading out.  We got pretty lucky with the weather; the predictions are for a big storm to hit this area tonight, and has been very, very cold lately.  But this morning it was dry and hovering around freezing, which in my book is practically perfect running temperature.

The race is huge, so we walked out to the starting line about ten minutes before start time.  We both agreed on a meeting place for after, since we knew she’d be faster than me.  The gun went off and we shuffled towards the starting line in the crowd.

I have been sick lately and injured my knees two weeks ago, so I wasn’t sure how it was going to go.  I haven’t even run outside at all in the last week at all!  But the course is mostly flat and runs through beautiful neighborhoods around Yale University, so I told myself to just find a comfortable pace and enjoy the run.  The first mile felt a little tough, because we hadn’t warmed up at all.  So it was really just trying to loosen up and get warm.

Once I found my pace I really enjoyed the run.  I felt like I was right at the edge of my comfort zone, but not too far over it.  I watched people start to slow down and walk as I got close to mile 2, and while I felt a little tired, I wasn’t too discouraged by it.   By mile 2.5 I knew I was getting closer to the end, and I knew I wouldn’t PR.  I would have loved to do that, but I knew it was a longshot considering how little I’ve run lately.  I was OK with it.  I just kept working my pace and made the last few turns towards the end.

Finally, we turned the corner back to the bar where we’d started the race.  I was able to really push myself for the last .1 and crossed the line strong.  My net time was 36:37, not a PR by a long shot.  But I never slowed to walk, and I hit negative splits at each mile, which is something I have never pulled off.  The race felt good the whole time, and I was happy with it.

My friend met me at the finish, and we went inside the bar to enjoy the cover band and the free beer they give you after you finish.  We had such a great time chatting and drinking that all of a sudden we looked around and realized that the party was over!  There were hardly any food items left and no water!   I grabbed us some apples and we walked back to my car, munching and chatting and marveling at what a fun time we had together.

Cheers to us!