Friday, July 31, 2009

This is how I felt at the end of my 5k...

Week 2 and still going strong!

I felt so great during my run today that I wanted to write a special (though short) note about it. :)

I did Week 2/Day 2 today and felt absolutely AMAZING through the whole thing. I'm feeling much stronger, more comfortable, and actually happy that I'm running. Does that make me some sort of weirdo? Possibly. :)

It almost made me forget that I lost my running shoes and water bottle. They're both somewhere in the house (I can feel it...) but I've looked everywhere I can think to look. I wish Ethan could talk, or at least understand slightly more complex questions. Like, "Ethan, did you hide Mama's shoes?" It's probably not fair for me to blame him... but I have this feeling that I'm probably going to find my shoes stuffed somewhere with our guitar magnets, and random toys. He's such a goof. It keeps me on my toes!

Lord - you know where my shoes are... would you please help me find them?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

I finished week 1 of 10k training!

So technically I finished the first week of 10k training on Tuesday. :)

But I stayed in week 1 for Thursday and today so that Sheri and I could be on the same page to enjoy our "final" run of each week together. We decided to run earlier than usual today to beat the heat. I'm not sure how hot it's supposed to be right now, but it was definitely hot enough for us during our run this morning.

Part of me really wishes I could run and not be effected by the weather. However I have noticed that the times I've run in direct sunlight and heat - I've always had a much harder time. I still finish, but it's definitely harder. I'd like to learn how to care for my body when I do need to run in the heat - then I'll be able to find out if I'm just not meant for it, or if I just have to take a couple steps to make sure I'm taken care of.

Fun days ahead- I'll keep you all posted!


Oh! And I ran in my cute new running skirt today. Yay! Thank you to Daniel for buying me a fun little skirt and tank top so that I can feel like a princess when I run, rather than a frumpy lump of newbie. Haha.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Starting over!

Sheri and I are going to be doing the Freeway to 10k training plan together - so I figured instead of jumping on to week 2, I'd keep doing week 1 this week so we can do our "last run" of each week together. It's a great motivator - I want to make sure I do the run twice before I run with Sheri so I can get comfortable with it and just be able to enjoy the run.

Sheri is a great running buddy - she keeps a great comfortable pace, which helps me to stay in the game. And she's very encouraging. Plus she's adorable.

Three cheers for Sheri!


Saturday, July 18, 2009

I thought of you guys today... and it kept me on track :)

Coming back from our vacation threw our gym schedule off track. Mostly because I struggle with perfectionist tendencies, and the fact that we missed three days at the gym while on vacation made it difficult for me to decide what to do at the gym with my other two weekdays. Thursday I ended up going for a walk at Glendoveer with Ethan, and today I procrastinated until about 5pm.

It was quite the sight, I'm sure. I was working on some curriculum stuff for my class and got to feeling really sweaty and gross. It's been hot this week, and feeling sweaty and gross always makes me wish I were about 40 pounds smaller... so that there'd be less of me to fold over and create sweat pockets (nice visual, I'm sure). So I talked myself into being spontaneous and going to the gym at that moment. I got all excited and went to jump in the car and realized I needed to...

Pack my bag
Pack Ethan's bag
Find my running clothes (oops... they're in the wash... oh well!)
Find new running clothes (obnoxious pink shorts and a black tshirt... who cares how I look!)
Change Ethan's diaper
Change Ethan's shirt
Double-check that I have my i-pod... oops!
Hand Ethan the keys to keep him happy while I search...
No i-pod... check online to make sure I remember the intervals...
Get sucked into facebook and cafemom...
Almost give up...
Remember this blog!

Ooooooooh! This will be a funny story for the blog! :) So I finally packed everything into the car (including Ethan) and we went to the gym without Daniel. Sad! Ethan loved Kids Klub, and Mommy got to put in her second day of 10k training. Yay!

Alternative title for this post: Blog helps perfectionist overcome fitness-impairing OCD

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Day 1 of 10k Training - Accomplished!

I was blessed to be able to do my first day of 10k training at Cannon Beach, where Daniel and Ethan and I are spending a few days enjoying some time as a family. I've decided to use the Podrunner Intervals training program from the same guy who did the Couch to 5k set. I think the address is for anyone who is interested.

Daniel and Ethan spend 45 minutes swinging in the park while I jogged back and forth through downtown Cannon Beach and up into some of the residential neighborhoods. I got smirked at by some teenage girl. I'm not sure if it's because she felt sorry for me because I was running, or if perhaps my ridiculous bed hair (why bother fixing it if I'm going to be sweaty and need a shower?) caught her attention. Either way, I felt a little embarrassed at first. But then I thought to myself... why be emberassed? I'm out running and taking care of my body. And, I just ran my first 5k race a week ago... so what does it matter what a teenager thinks of me? It's nice to be building some confidence in myself as I start taking better care of the body the Lord's given me.

Usually when I run, I've got that voice in my head telling me , "everyone is staring at you and laughing at the fat girl running." That voice use to keep me from trying any sort of physical activity in front of other people. Now I just remind myself that at that moment - when I'm running - I'm doing the best thing I can do to take care of my body. I'm not sitting on my fat booty anymore! I'm dragging that booty through town at a slow jog. Haha. :)

Speaking of loosing my booty... I've hit some sort of plateau in the weight-loss realm. Since January of this year I've lost 20 lbs, and since Ethan's birth (over a year ago) I've lost close to 75 lbs. Granted, over 10lbs of that WAS Ethan... but it's still nice to include that number. All in all, I think I've probably lost about 55 lbs since this time last year. Which feels pretty good.

I think the next step is to pay real attention to the foods I'm eating and start making some life changes. I've tried all sorts of diets and food restrictions, but they never work for the long haul because they aren't permanent changes. I don't know if it's realistic for me to swear off chocolate, or coffee, or ice cream... because the thought of living life without those things sends me into such a panic that I always end up having a "one last time" binge and then falling off the wagon anyway. I think the real solution will be found in focusing on what TO eat, rather than what not to eat. I'm using a trial version of a computer-based meal planning program that doubles as a food journal. I'm emberassed to say that the first three days I've recorded have boasted 3 consecutive 4000 calorie days. It's a miracle that I'm just plateauing and not gaining at this point! There are some big life changes ahead for me, and I'm sure that some of those changes will be emotional. It's strange how food can be such an emotional addiction and a coping mechanism, isn't it? I'll keep you all posted as I take each step along the way. It's been an encouragement to have everyone's support and loving comments - so keep 'em up!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Slow and steady wins the race... or at least finishes...

UPDATED: Jan 3rd 2010 with pictures... I'm slow

Running Buddy Sheri, me, and Ethan before the big race

Teagen and Katy surprised us!

Ethan waving me off as I head to the start line

My horrific finish-line photo... I wanted to die

We did it!

Daniel's parents (Jon & Harriet) came to see me finish!

Running Buddies after finishing our first race

Original Post:

I did it! I had my first 5k race on the 4th of July - yay!

My friend Sheri met us at our place around 7:30am, and we packed up Ethan and Daniel and headed for the Mentor Graphics campus in Wilsonville. It was a beautiful day, and there was a good showing of people. It was a fun run/walk, and people showed up with baby joggers and dogs - so the atmosphere was pretty laid back and fun. There was a 5k and a 10k race going on while we were there, and a kids 1/2 mile loop as well. Our friends Teagan and Katie from church surprised us - they were there to race too! What a fun surprise. :)

Sheri and I lined up when it was time, and realized that we'd forgotten to wear sunscreen. Oops... rookie mistake. :) When the race started, it was hard for me not to try and keep up with everyone, but Sheri is an amazing running partner and helps to keep the pace steady throughout our run. I was feeling a little silly as we followed a cute little Grandma who was steadily gaining ground ahead of us. But, when we hit a hill we ended passing her. She's still my hero. :)

The course was a nice 3.1 mile loop around this big business park. Most of the race was on the shoulder of the road surrounding their complex, but there was a half mile where there was no shoulder. That was great fun.

It was a beautiful day, not really a cloud anywhere in sight. And sadly, not many shade trees either... haha. As far as other runs we've done, it was probably one of the hottest - and obviously the longest. At one point we were running uphill facing the sun, and being passed by a couple with a baby jogger, and I just had to laugh. Because it was a run/walk, there were a handful of people who started out running really strong and took walking breaks. We just happened to end up running behind three of these people. I kept getting really excited that we were about to pass them - because they'd had such a strong start - but as soon as they heard us passing them they'd sprint ahead. It was very frustrating. The funniest part of the race was when we rounded what I thought would be the last corner (it wasn't) around the 2 mile mark. As we rounded the corner I was expecting to see the parking lot and finish line, but what I saw instead was over .75 mile of sidewalk filled with the people who were running ahead of us. The last third of it was actually a pretty steep hill. I almost screamed... lol. I definitely had one of those moments where I seriously questioned whether or not I'd be able to finish. I have those EVERY run... but this time it was combined with some direct sunlight and added heat, and a BIG hill.

What was really great, though, is that just when we hit that difficult part all of the 10k runners (who started after us and at a different location but were not lapping us slow kids) started passing us and saying, "good job, Ladies!" and "you're looking strong, keep it up!" It was really encouraging to receive such encouragement and support from strangers, but strangers that know how hard you're working.

Our friends Teagan and Katie finished way before we did and ended up walking back to cheer us on for the last 1/2 mile or so. They told us we were doing great, took a picture of us running up the hill, and let us know we only had two more corners to turn (around the final edge of the loop and then into the parking lot) before we were done. When we hit the 3 mile mark we both cheered and kept plugging away to finish our .1 mile. As we passed through the parking lot I saw Daniel's parents and waved - it was fun to have them come see me finish. Daniel got a hilarious picture that really captures how I was feeling. I look all sweaty, tired, excited and a little freaked out. When we finally crossed the finish line - at 38:09, I was so wooped that I didn't have the energy to cheer. But there were fudgecicles, which was a nice surprise. Sheri and Daniel and Ethan and I went to Jazzy Bagel in Gresham afterwards to celebrate, and Ethan was very impressed with the gentleman who was playing piano for us. Overall, it was a lovely day!

One thing that really stuck out to me during this race, was how important the principle of finishing what you start is to me. I found myself not caring how quickly we finished or who passed us, as long as I ran every step and completed the race - I'd acheive my goal. And we did it! When we were coming down the last little stretch in the parking lot - with the finish line and family in view - it made me think of the exhortation in scripture to keep our eyes focused on Christ.

Hebrews 12:1-3
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Of course the author of Hebrews is talking about persevering in our faith and focusing our eyes on Jesus as the beginning and end of our faith. He's the one who gave us new life and a new heart to love God, and He's the one into whose image we're being transformed - so that one day we will live for God's glory with our whole being. That's the prize we're running after - is to be like Jesus and to be with Him. To be free to worship Him for all of eternity. It sounds a little weird - and maybe a little boring - to think about it like that. But the more I get to know Christ in the scriptures, and the more I learn about God by walking with Him, the more my heart yearns to finally see Him get the glory that He deserves.

Trying to see to the end of the road and picture all of that is a little fuzzy - but that's sort of how I felt today during the race. My glasses are broken, so the finish line and all the people cheering us on were blurry. Plus it was really hot and so my face was all warm and I was totally exhausted. I think that's a good picture for how life is. :) It's a little fuzzy and disorienting to push through the difficult stuff between today and forever... but by keeping my eyes focused on the final goal - standing with people from every tribe and nation to honor our King and worship Him forever... I can have the strength to take one step at a time.

Running is great. But Jesus is greater.
A newbie runner's first race buzz is pretty exciting... but I'm sure seeing Jesus for the first time will blow that out of the park!