Day 223 – Food regret & a good run

There have been many times in the past 7 months when I have eaten more than I “should” have on any given day. There are times when it has been totally controlled and intentional, and there have been times when I lost control; but I usually make it a point to decline any feelings of regret. I eat what I eat. I cannot un-eat it, so I’m usually quick to move on.

Yesterday was different. We went to my son’s academic competition, and I knew we’d be eating lunch while there. Since they were serving concession stand food (which is both high in calories and gross), I told Little Man that I’d take him out for dinner, so long as we packed lunch. I didn’t mind eating a few more calories, if I was spending them on yummy food, but I refuse to waste my taste buds on gross-ness. It worked great, and I stayed 100% on track. As we finished our delicious dinner, MFP showed that I was just under 1500 calories for the day! My tummy was full, it was 5pm, and I was proud!

Then we walked past the Girl Scouts.

After several weeks of ignoring them, I broke down and bought 1 box of Thin Mints – MMMMmmmm! I ate 8 cookies. I probably should have stopped after 4, but 8 wasn’t terrible and brought my calories for the day to 1750-ish – I could TOTALLY live with that and was proud of myself for walking away while there were still cookies in the sleeve!

The rest of the evening was calm, and I was happy with the way my day had gone. Hubby arrived home after picking up dinner for himself on the way. He offered me some macaroni salad, and I accepted. I didn’t think about; didn’t consult the nutrition facts; didn’t ask myself if I was even hungry (I wasn’t); I just ate some macaroni salad.

It was not good. Even as I ate it, I was thinking to myself, “This is kind of yucky macaroni salad. It doesn’t have much flavor, is a bit soupy, and I’m really not hungry.” With 2 bites left in my bowl, it dawned on me that I should stop eating it. *head thump* I guessed that I’d eaten about a half cup, and figured I hadn’t screwed up too bad. In my head I was expecting 100-150 calories, as I logged back into MFP to add it to my day.

Then I saw the real number – 270 CALORIES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Day 222

Yeah, my very small, not yummy, bowl of macaroni salad was absolutely NOT worth this!

For the first time, since starting this journey, I sincerely regret eating something. I was SO pissed off at myself. How could I be stupid enough to eat it without checking the label? Why on Earth did I not STOP eating it after that first bite – when I realized I didn’t like it? I know it’s still a stretch for me, but I have been working on only eating when I’m physically hungry – why didn’t I consider that and stop myself?

After a good night’s sleep, I’m still mad that my daily total for yesterday hit 2100 calories over something so gross and after such a hard won day, but I have quit beating myself up about it. I certainly learned something from it!

I am back on track today. I had a great run this morning, and we’re grilling burgers for dinner tonight.

Day 223

This includes my dinner plans, and I’m committed to sticking to this today! I might have a 100 calorie bag of popcorn, if I’m really craving a snack tonight, and I could live with that. I’ll either end my day at 1417 or 1517 – both are very reasonable.

Run Feb 28 2016

It was a beautiful day for a run! Having water with me is really nice. I feel like a dork wearing my water bottles, but it works well for me. I just keep reminding myself that I look like a dork running down the road anyway – adding water bottles really doesn’t change much. 😉

Feb 28 splits

I was SO proud of my negative splits today! (As I type that I’m a bit thrown off to realize that I actually know running each mile faster than the one before is called “negative splits!”)



Day 221 – Scale and trails

I was dismayed to see the scale this morning. I felt like my eating was great this week. I knew that Thursday was rough, but I still expected to see a solid pound disappear. When I saw that I loss less than 1/2 a pound, I was really upset. I hate feeling like I don’t understand WHY my weight fluctuates the way it does sometimes. Of course, 20 minutes later (as I cried about it) mother nature announced herself and explained both the weight and the crying. *head thump*

26 Scale Feb 26 179.6lbs

I confess – I stepped on the scale again tonight, and it was already down to 178.9. I think things will bounce back by next week. This morning was just the worst possible time to step on a scale!

With all of the schedule craziness this week, I ended up running this afternoon. I never run on Fridays, so it felt weird, but in a good way. After a 12 hour day yesterday and teaching today, and I didn’t have it in me to face the “Hill of Doom.” I ended up covering the 1.75 miles in front of my house back and forth until I hit 4.5 miles! That’s a new distance record for me – even if I did pass my house 4 times to do it! The whole run felt leisurely and meandering, so it was nice.

At one end of my run, I always turn around because of dogs. The dogs weren’t out today, so I went a bit farther than usual and decided to peek around the corner.


The driveway on the right has 2 dogs who are friendly, but overly excited to see a runner. I usually turn around at about this point to stop them from following me, so I’ve never seen what’s around that bend to the left.

Corner more

Today, I learned that it’s more of a bend. Seriously, I think this corner goes on forever. I ran a good way past it and never saw it open up.

Life & Limb

Running under this tree scares the crap out of me every time I do it. One of these days the supporting tree is going to snap, and the whole thing is going to come crashing down.

As you can see, it’s starting to turn into spring here. We are still seeing snow showers now and again, but the ground has warmed up enough that nothing sticks. There are a still a few pockets of snow here and there, but most of it has disappeared.

I’m looking forward to another great run on Sunday, and I’m on track again for today!

Day 221

I counted yesterday as my high calorie day, and I’m totally counting this as on-track for today.

Day 219 – Running, eating, and teaching

That’s all I’ve been doing for the last 3 days! I wake up, eat breakfast, teach English, eat lunch, teach science, teach my after school academic club, eat dinner, run, pass out, and do it all over again. In fairness, I did get to run instead of the after school club yesterday. It was actually a really nice 3.5 miles on a new route that led my to the twin of my favorite bridge! I want to run there again (maybe next week?) so that I can take pictures. It was a BEAUTIFUL run!

Usually, I run on Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, and Thursday. This week, I have parent-teacher conferences that make for a 12 hour day on Thursday, and my son’s team competition is on Saturday. That means there will be no running on either of those days. I’m proud to say, that I’m working around it and still running! I ran 1.5 miles on the treadmill tonight. Since my mom is here, I’ll be able to get in a good 3-4 miles immediately after school Friday. I’ll be able to do my normal Sunday run, though I think I’m going to try for 4 miles, instead of my usual 2, since I won’t have run the day before.

I hated giving up my mile-a-day, but I’m really glad to still be getting in about 12 miles each week.

Being so busy has also meant little time to think about my eating which has led to a very on-track kind of week!

Day 219

I’ve been doing pretty well with my eating this week.

Tomorrow is a teacher potluck. We do one every time we have to work a 12 hour day (3 times each year), and I always look forward to them. I work with an awesome group of teachers, and sharing a good meal with them is something I treasure. Unfortunately, that means I’ll likely overeat tomorrow. I’m going to try to keep it reasonable, but I also want to enjoy the good company and the good food!

Day 217 – Fake Out

At noon, today, I got called to the office to check on my son. He had been complaining of tummy trouble for a while, and he wouldn’t play in PE (a HUGE sign that he was NOT okay). He only had a temp of 99.6*F, we didn’t have anyone to cover my afternoon classes, and he wasn’t actually throwing up or anything, so I told him I loved him and sent him back to class. I was hoping for the best, and he did make it until the end of school. Then he bunny-hopped down the hallway, participated in his after school activity, and ate a full dinner. Apparently, he’s fine. The big faker.

Since I was anticipating him being sick tomorrow, I asked my mom to come out. (She was planning to come out later this week anyway.) She lives about 7 hrs away, but started driving right away. Now I feel bad that she dropped everything to come take care of a kid who isn’t sick. I am really glad that my family apparently isn’t succumbing to the stomach flu that’s been going around, and it will be nice to see my mom.

Aside from being insanely busy, today has been good. One of my son’s activities comes to its culmination this weekend. I’m excited both to see what he can do and to see one activity end! That means they practiced for it today and again Wednesday, plus he has basketball on Tues. I have parent-teacher conferences until 8pm on Thursday, and the competition Saturday requires us to travel there Friday night, so it’s going to be crazy all week long.

It should be a lot of fun, though!



Day 216 – What I eat doesn’t matter

Paula, from, recently asked me what a normal day of eating looks like for me. I hadn’t really thought about it, but I guess I don’t usually give many specifics about what I eat here (except for my indulgences like cheese, pie, and ice cream, of course).

After thinking about it for a bit, I realized that “what” I eat doesn’t actually matter (don’t worry, Paula, I’ll still share details). I consider what I eat to be similar to how fast I run. It’s notable data to collect. I am very aware of it, since it’s something I’m trying to improve, but that improvement has to come one step at a time.

Like running, weightloss has been 90% mental and 10% physical, for me. My food choices are almost always made for mental reasons.

I also think of both running and my diet in similar ways: When I see my 12-13 minute running pace, I get excited about how fast I am! While I do look forward to getting faster in the future, I never feel too slow, because I know I’m the best runner I can be, today. I celebrate my efforts and successes without letting my occasional tough workout or botched run set me back.

I have the same attitude about my eating. I like to see how much better I eat now, compared to how I used to eat. I look forward to eating even healthier in the future, but I don’t stress over it. I’m eating the best I can, today. To celebrate all of the ways my diet has changed for the better, I’ll include a comparison to what I used to eat. Beware, though, I’m about to let you see inside all of messed up mental reasoning!

Breakfast food

UPDATE: All of the 1/2 t measurements in this recipe are supposed to be 1/2 Tablespoon! 

Lunch FoodDinner Food

I have also learned that physical hunger is my enemy. If I get truly HUNGRY, it’s like falling in a pothole while running. I will crawl away crying while stuffing my face with whatever I can find nearby. If I’m feeling hungry, I eat before it becomes a problem – even if that means going over my calories for the day.

I don’t remember who it was, but one of you WONDERFUL readers once suggested that I log my food at the start of each day – as a way to plan my eating for the day. That advice was life-changing for me. By planning my day, I ensure I can fit in everything I want, while spacing meals so that I don’t find myself left hungry. Sometimes I end up making a substitution, not eating something, or eating something extra, but my plan gives me a starting point for the day, so I never find myself sitting down to dinner without any calories left!

I really feel like I can eat anything I want, I just have to think about it differently. Weighing, measuring, and tracking everything keeps me aware of my choices gives me a direct connection between those choices and my weight.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask!

Day 215 – Long run Saturday

Run Feb 20 2016

I survived the Hill of Doom, yet again. By the time I actually run my half marathon, I will have mastered that stupid thing! I did run the whole hill, today.

Prep – My high calorie day was yesterday, and I enjoyed PIZZA! I had my normal oats for breakfast, and I remembered to eat again before running. I had 1 egg, 1 egg white, and a Vanilla Blueberry Cashew Kind Bar. I wore my warm weather tights (since it was 60*F!) along with a tech-T and my new hydration belt!

Pace – Just over 12 min/mile

Walks –I stopped every time I took a drink. If I don’t, I choke. I’m working on learning to drink from my water bottles while running and without choking, but for now, I’m stopping to drink.

Water breaks – Three or Four. Heat was an issue for me today, so it was REALLY nice to have water with me. I drank at 1.25 miles, at the top of the “Hill of Doom!” at 3.25 miles, and when I finished 4.16 miles!

Cars passed – 3 cars and 3 motorcycles; I’ve never seen motorcycles on my road before!

How it felt – Good, but hot. After getting used to running in 20-40*F weather, 60 was a big shocker. I put snow on my head at one point to try and cool down. (The fact that there is snow while I’m struggling with heat stroke would be a big indication that the weather is wonky!) I was really tired by the end of the run, but there was a large portion of the run that felt comfortable and enjoyable.

Notable – I actually ran 4.16 miles today. I also did a .91 mile cool down walk with the dog. The dog really needed some exercise, and we’ve learned that he is too old to handle running with me. He’s starting to have trouble with his hip, so he’s my motivation to make sure I do a good, long cool down stroll (that sometimes looks more like a drunken stagger).

Calories burned – about 550. I really think Smashrun gets this wrong. They had me burning upward of 600, and I just don’t buy it! Both MFP and my Garmin watch had me in the 550 ballpark, so that’s what I’m going with.

Day 215

I’m still on track!

Day 214 – Color me surprised

25 Scale Feb 19 180lbs

Huh, I lost 2 pounds. *scratches head* That’s … um… surprising. It’s cool, though, so I’ll take it! Yep, I lost 2 pounds this week. (Just don’t ask me to explain how or why.)

Just when I think I’ve got this weightloss thing figured out, my body surprises me. At least this surprise was a good one!

My goals for the week remain the same:

  1. Drink at least 64 oz of water each day.
  2. Stay under 1500 calories each day (except my high calorie day – today!)
  3. Run 4 times (Sat, Sun, Tues, Thurs) for a total of more than 10 miles.

That’s it. Three simple goals listed in order of priority. As much as I hate drinking water, I’m finding that it really makes staying on track MUCH easier! Who knew?? (Ok, fine. Probably everyone knew except for me, but now I know, too, so that’s that.)

Day 214

I’m on track for today!

It’s supposed to be beautiful tomorrow, so I’m looking forward to a full 4 miles!! The “Hill of DOOM” is going D-O-W-N! (Or at least, I’m going up!)

Day 213 – Back to work

Ok, I have REALLY enjoyed the past week. I’ve celebrated 50lbs, Valentine’s Day, shopping, and 3 whole snow days by eating cheese, ice cream, Oreos, more cheese, and just plain WAY too much food. Today, I returned to school, and I also looked at my numbers in anticipation of tomorrow’s weigh-in.

Valentine week 2016

I use the blue to show my water intake. Sun & Mon, I only drank about half the water I should! I would also point out that I went over my calories 4-5 (gross vs. net) days!

Calorie Data

By itself, the week may not seem too bad, until you look back at historical data and realize that I have not netted an average of more than 1500 since New Year’s! (When I gained weight!)

Yes, I know my data collection puts me dangerously close to “nerd” territory, but I like to know what’s up. Based on the numbers… I will be shocked if I lose weight tomorrow.

I’m okay with this – it’s been a great week!

But now it’s time to get back to work. I still have another 50 lbs to lose, and MANY more miles to run.

One of the biggest things I’ve learned through this journey is to never wait until tomorrow. When I decide to do something, I should just start it right away.

So I got back on track – TODAY!

I ran 3.1 miles in 36:45 after school, and I stayed within my calories for the day.

Day 213

And now I’m posting it here.

I’ve got this! (Even if I gain weight tomorrow.)


Day 212 – Snow day cleaning & more pics

We’ve not been in school since Friday. Mostly that is AWESOME, but sometimes it’s a little… bleh, especially since it’s been icy more than snowy. Today, I decided to put my time to good use and do some cleaning. I went through and organized the 8 billion pictures on our camera’s memory card, and I cleaned out ALL of my old clothes. I sorted the pictures into neatly labeled folders, tossed all the clothes that are now too big, and eliminated any clothes I just didn’t like (I LOVE that I can now choose clothes based on “like” instead of “fit!”).

Anyway, I found a picture from day we went fishing the summer before last. We spend MANY of our summer days at a nearby lake, and I’ve learned to trade fashion for comfort. On this particular day, I remember being really excited that Little Man and I both caught a fish at the same time. The result is the ONLY picture I have of my adult self in shorts! Even when I was a young adult, I never wore shorts (I’m not a fan of my knees).

While cleaning out my closet, I found the exact shorts and shirt from the picture, so I decided to take a second picture. I was actually debating keeping the shorts, because they are really comfy and didn’t feel thaaat big when I put them on. When I asked my son to take the picture, I expected to see a little bit of a difference, but I didn’t feel like the clothes really fit me thaaat differently.

50 lb difference

Yeah, I don’t think I realized just HOW BIG I was! I shocked by the difference! I still don’t like my knees, but they look way better than they used to.

Since we were taking pics anyway, I also decided to take my official 210 day update pics. I wasn’t really planning to, since I feel like I’ve posted a lot of pictures recently, but I like having the monthly photos in the same clothes.210 Day comparison

Day 211 – For the love of peaches


You would think that our brains would have some way of telling us not to eat stuff that could kill us, yet sometimes that can be the most appealing food of all.

Prior to teaching middle school, I spent several years teaching little kids. My very first year teaching, I had a student who LOVED peaches. Unfortunately, he was allergic to peaches – anaphylaxis, stop breathing, and die – allergic to peaches. Since it was the first year my kids were in a public school, all 8 of us teachers went to the cafeteria to help our 80+ students through the lunch line. Our students had to learn to make choices like “broccoli or corn,” “applesauce or peaches,” and “white milk, chocolate, or strawberry” while balancing a tray of food. They had to learn their “lunch number” and how to enter it into the keypad at the register. We helped them sit with an appropriate amount of space for their elbows and those of their neighbors, and we taught them to open all of their food containers. Getting through lunch was quite a production (and a major accomplishment) for my little ones!

Of course, we always reminded students of their allergies, but when asked, “applesauce or peaches?” my little peach-lover couldn’t resist. He always said, “PEACHES!” – usually while bouncing up and down with excitement. For a while, the excitement and bouncing would alert us, and we’d stand between him and his favorite fruit – so he learned to quietly whisper, “I’d like some peaches, please.” While his eyes grew large with anxious anticipation. Many times we stopped him at the register and made him exchanges his peaches for a different fruit, so he started snatching that first scrumptious bite with one hand while choosing his milk with the other. All told, we had to hit him with an EpiPen 3 times that year. Eventually, we pinned a sign to his shirt that said, “I love peaches, but am SEVERELY ALLERGIC! Please, NO PEACHES!!” I must say the lunch workers themselves became much more aware of him after the 2nd and 3rd time lunch service was interrupted by the rescue squad.

I must confess to having a certain admiration and understanding of this kid. Even though I weighed somewhere around 140 at the time, I’ve always had a deep love and passion for food. Those feelings have never been tempered by concerns for my health or digestive happiness, and while I like to think I’m gaining some wisdom with age, this weekend’s diary indulgence proves that when offered ice cream and cheese, I will still bounce up and down while accepting my treat, sneak more bites than I should have, and smile about it while suffering the digestive consequences.

Unfortunately, it blew my run, today. That might just be the line for me.

I was very excited to run workout #8 from my treadmill book, and I was completely committed to seeing it all the way through. It was a doable workout! But it didn’t get done. I did 8/9 of it. Yep, I was that close to finishing. I was shaking and off kilter. I couldn’t get my breathing under control, and my gut was bubbling like water boiling over on the stove. My arms were so wobbly, I couldn’t even hold the pen to check off my intervals by the 3rd segment of the workout. I know I gave it 100% of what I had to give today, but I also know that I only had about 60% of my usual effort available, because of my food choices this weekend. I want to say I’ll never eat cheese or ice cream again, but every time one of us punched that EpiPen into that little boy, he cried and swore he’d never choose peaches again. I suspect this won’t be the last of my dairy disasters, but I do think I’ll consider the consequences a bit more carefully in the future. Maybe someday I’ll even develop the wisdom to stop eating food my digestive system can’t handle? After all, I’ve learned to keep my food healthy-ish and properly portioned; I’ve learned to run 4 miles without dying; I can learn all sorts of new stuff!

WO #8

The 3rd segment was suppose to have 3 more intervals at 3.8 mph, 4.8 mph, and 5.8 mph. In truth Segment #2 was supposed to be the same speed as Segment #1 and the 3.4, 4.4, & 5.4 intervals in Segment #3 were actually supposed to be 3.5, 4.5 & 5.5, but I knew I was in trouble and was trying to salvage the workout.