Sunday, September 19, 2010

A plan

On October 25, 2009 I ran my first 5K. I had never even walked a 5K before, at least not as a race. I had hiked and walked well more than 3.1 miles many times in my life. But I had only ran that far once before, just days before in fact.

I had never been a runner. I had worked hard to get to that point, using the Couch to 5K program. And it worked. Of course I was SLOW! I finished in 44:37. So pretty much a 15 minute mile pace. SLOW. I was passed by power walkers.

I was so proud. I had gained back about thirty pounds by that point and it was a source of frustration for me, but I had worked hard and had done this thing. This thing that I hadn't even been able to do when I was at my healthiest a couple years earlier.

Then I made my big mistake. I didn't plan. I deserved to take a week off. I had trained so hard. And then it was NaNoWriMo time. I had to write 50,000 words. You cannot write while you run. And I didn't have another race scheduled and then it just seemed like I didn't have time for a race until after Christmas. And after Christmas I had gained more weight and it was depressing and it was hard and I would try to work through the program again at a faster pace and... I just couldn't.

At the end of May I realized that something other than my lifestyle was holding me back with my weight loss. (And causing me other health problems.) No more birth control for me and I think things are finally moving in the right direction again, though I have a long way to go. Still by that point it was hot. Too hot for a 200 pound woman to get her butt out in the Louisiana heat and run. Or that's what it seemed like every time I tried and then just came home and collapsed after work.

In July in one of the emails from the local Fleet Feet, there was a story about their 5K training program that was going to start in August. And I started to consider it. I decided that I had lost all self motivation. That I was at an all time low when it came to my weight, my health and my self/body image. I decided I needed yoga again and I needed something to motivate my cardio.

A new yoga studio is rescuing my soul and my self worth while running is helping to shape my body the way I want it. Inside and out. I new I would have to spend money and have incentives to get back into running. I wanted to be back there, but I just wasn't sure how to push out of my funk. The answer pay money. Have a goal and meetings that I could obsess about.

The training program has been different - focused more on distance than just the run/walk time method I used with C25K. And there has been some hard weeks. But there has also been weeks I'm where I've been super proud. I ran THREE times while on vacation over labor day. That's a first. I ran on HILLS in Atlanta. We don't really have those here in the bayou. Coming back to the heat after the pleasant temps in the ATL was hard and that was my roughest week yet, but Wednesday it seems I have turned a corner.

I have my pace. It's even slower than last year, though probably not surprising considering I'm carrying about 20 more pounds on my body than last year. But I have my pace. And if it takes me a friggin hour to run the 5K on Halloween then in takes me an hour.

But here's the real reason I'm writing this today. To lay out my plan. My running plan. I will not make the same mistake I made last year.

So my plan is as follows:
  • Run the Jackolantern Jog with the rest of my running group on Halloween.
  • The Reindeer Run 5K in December - Try to improve my time
  • The Mardi Gras Mambo 10K in February 2011 - My first 10K!
  • RocketChix Triathlon in April/May 2011 - My first Tri!
  • The Baton Rouge Beach Half Marathon in December 2011 - My first half marathon!
I think it's a reasonable training plan, or plans really. My training plan will be different for each race and it's likely I'm might add in a few other races as I go. Especially in that stretch from RocketChix to the Beach Marathon, but I have a plan! I will not stop running again for lack of a plan. I want to have lots more pictures like these. Where I'm nervous, excited (and freaking COLD) and then so, so happy - if hot, sweaty and exhausted.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Toe - MAH - toes!!

So not long ago the fabulous Emily posted this recipe for Un-Fried Green tomatoes and I immediately wanted to make it. I've lived in the South pretty much my whole life and I don't believe that I've ever had a fried green tomato - but this just looked soooo good.

Problem - It's hard to buy green tomatoes, I don't have a garden, and my friends who did are dealing with this crazy heat that is killing many vegetables. Plus, the few times I find some - they turn red before I can get to them.

When a volunteer at the office brought me some from the farmer's market - actually going to the trouble to pick through different baskets, getting the green ones for me I knew that I had to use them. And of course when I was at Whole Foods today I found a couple of other green heirloom tomatoes. Shocking.

I followed Emily's recipe pretty much exactly, except that when I went to open our mushrooms - they were SLIMY! Gross. I'm not the biggest mushroom fan to begin with, mostly because of textural issues and when they get slimy - ain't gonna happen.

So I substituted the mushrooms for some sweet peppers from the farmer's market. I also had some extra green tomato that I threw in with the other tomatoes.

I had a bit of trouble with mine sticking, but I think perhaps I did not spray the pan evenly enough. Or possibly some of my slices were too thin, as the ones that were thicker slid off the pan easy-peasy.

It was SO GOOD!

The man was less fond, but he is less fond of tomatoes over all - and not so fond of the whole wheat flour I used also. He ended up using two as a sandwich bun for a veggie patty.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

2010 - That's a nice round number

Ah - Resolution TIME! I have discovered that now that I live in Louisiana the biggest problem I have with starting a health regiment after new year's even can be summed up in two words: King Cake. Every where else in the country you have break from special treats as of January 1st. Most people can keep things going smoothly until at least Valentine's Day. And even that day doesn't have to provide that big of a bump. Valentine's candy is just regular candy in red and pink foil - it doesn't have to have special appeal. And anyone can shake off a fancy dinner out and a bit of extra candy that's probably only a temptation around the house and office for about a week or so.

But here, HERE - we have Mardi Gras and I know the rest of the country think that this is only a day in February or March, but my dears, no. Mardi Gras is a friggin season. And the King Cakes, those luscious rings of flaky cinnamon, creamy filling, and tasty frosting are out in full force the first week of January. They are just a precursor of all the parties and parades that will take place over the next month and a half. It is just evil! We've already had two King cakes at my office and Mardi Gras day is not until Feb. 16th. GrrrArg!

So try and bare with me as I try and get back to a healthy lifestyle in the midst of King Cake Caverns. What? That isn't a place in candy land?

My resolutions for the year.
  1. Get my healthy lifestyle habits back.
  2. Use this blog more.
  3. Make laziness an artform, not a lifestyle.
The first should be pretty obvious and straightforward.

The second - well I'd like to update at at least once a week and I'd like to talk about both my struggles and triumphs with eating well and BOOKS! I want to THINK again. So I'd like to try and do some book reviews here once a month or once every couple of months. I'm planning to start with Intuitively Eating. I want to re-read it and try and embrace it even more.

The third - I'm a lazy person. I know it. But I'd like to be less lazy. I'd like to pick my times to be lazy. Like New Year's day when I have nothing pressing to do, and have been traveling for weeks it is completely appropriate to break out the ultimate of lazy days, not even getting dressed or going anywhere and just reading all day. It is not okay to come home from work and not do anything, it is not okay to be lazy all the time every day. So I'm going to work on it.