Big Update pt 1 – weight & running

So far this summer, we’ve camped at Shenandoah National Park, spent a few days at a nearby state park, enjoyed a week in Disney World, camped at Niagara Falls, and introduced little man to white water rafting while camping with some old friend at a Pennsylvania state park.

We’ve not been home for more than 5 days at a stretch, but that changes this week! We are home for a whole 8 days!

I’ll post more about our travels tomorrow. For today, I want to focus on my weight and running. There is big news on both fronts!

Sadly, the big news about my weight is that the number is, well… BIG! When we got home from this last trip, I stepped on the scale and saw “166” lbs!! EEEAAACCCKKKK!!!! My weight has been up and down as we’ve traveled, but it’s never been higher than 162-ish. 166 scares the crap out of me! Last fall, I’d been as low as 152-ish, so this is almost a 15 lb gain. That’s not small potatoes, and I’m feeling it. My clothes are tight, my running is slow, and I feel fat.

I’ve committed to tracking every bite for the 8 days we are home, but tracking while traveling is tough, and we have a lot more traveling to do this summer! I honestly don’t have a great plan about the weight gain right now. I know I need to get it under control, but my current focus is elsewhere. For now, I’m going to try to make better choices, track for the next 8 days, and hope for the best. Ugh!

Thankfully, the big news about my running is more positive. My mileage is up – WAY up! I’m hitting about 25 miles/ week most weeks, now. They aren’t fast miles, but I’m doing them, and they feel good! Right now, my long runs are 7 or 8 miles, but I’m running 4-6 days a week. Sometimes (like today) my run is just 2 miles. July 2017 runs

I’ve also started using a paper journal to track my runs, in addition to Smashrun. When we camp, I don’t have internet to upload my runs, and my watch only stores 5 activities. The paper journal makes a nice back-up to ensure I have my data even if my watch loses it. Then I can manually enter it on Smashrun.

My next half marathon is October 1st, so I’m still very early in the training. I really want to at least get close to 2:10 (under 10 min/mile), but unless I can drop these 15 lbs, that will continue to be a pipe dream. Again, we’ll see what happens.

While the heat of summer does suck, I have a bit of an advantage where I live. Since we are up in the mountains, in the middle of nowhere, it cools down every night (at least into the lower 60’s), and it usually takes a few hours to warm up. I’m finding that the heat is manageable, so long as I’m done with my run around 10 am or so. Running while camping is also nice, since I get to explore new places. Since we’ve mostly traveled north, the temps haven’t been too bad.

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Busy, busy

I just wanted to post a quick update. I’ve not been posting for a few reasons, but mostly because I just haven’t been willing to make the time to sit down and write.

The end of the school year went well, and we immediately took off camping at a new state park. It was awesome, and we’re planning to return in August to explore the area more.

After just a few days at home, we were off to Disney. I was a bit under-excited about that trip. I hate crowds and heat, and well… Disney is mostly crowds and heat. Luckily, Fastpass has really improved the park experience and the whole week was a million times better than I could have ever dreamed!!!

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We’re now packing up to head to Niagra Falls, which will be immediately followed by us joining old friends for a rafting/camping trip through western Pennsylvania.

This week also marked the official start of training for my next half marathon (scheduled for Oct 1). I ran 24 miles last week, and 15 the week before (which was the week we were in Disney, so I was thrilled with 15 miles!) I’m loosely trying for 20-ish miles per week the whole month of July, so we’ll see how it goes.

I’ve not been tracking my eating. It’s just not something I’m interested in doing right now. I am still keeping an eye on my weight, though. When I returned from Disney, I was up to 161, but I’m already back to 159.1 lbs. My goal is to start the 2017-2018 school year in the mid-150’s. Since that’s exactly where I was at the start of last school year, I’ll count that as a successful year of maintenance.

Hope all of you are having a fun summer!

I will stop in and update now and then.

Day 11 – Overeating

I think I’m a bit dehydrated. I don’t think I ever really recovered from the run (and drinking a whole bottle of wine Sat. night probably didn’t help).

In any case, my lips are chapped, my skin is dry, and I am HUNGRY. One of the things I’ve learned these past couple years, is that I feel like a bottomless pit of hunger if I’m not well-hydrated.

I tried not to go nuts with it tonight, and I’m trying to drink lots of water.

Hopefully, tomorrow will be better.Day 11

Day 10 – My first black toenail!

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I have my first black toenail!

I really can’t decide if I am more proud, concerned, scared, or pained by it. I’m reserving the right to change my opinion on a day-by-day basis.

Of course, today meant traveling back home, so my eating wasn’t great. I’m happy that I tracked every bite. It would have been worse had I not be tracking diligently. It is what it is. Tomorrow is back to teaching!Day 10

Day 9 – Running, racing, tracking (or not)

This morning started with a delay. Our 7:30 start was moved to 8 – no biggie.

At 7:42 I was in my corral, ready to go… when we were told to seek shelter (and delayed to 8:30). So I huddled with hundreds of other runner under an awning.

At 8:10-ish the skies were starting to clear and all of us started moving back toward the corrals… when they announced there was still a weather threat and delayed us to 9 am.

I’m glad they were looking out for everyone’s safety, and their alerts were clearly conveyed and widely dispersed – even without a phone on me, I had no trouble keeping up with what was going on.

The issue was…

By the time I STARTED the race, it had been 4 hours since I’d eaten, and I finished my 13+ miles almost 7 hours AFTER my last meal (and this was true for most of us – it was a big topic of conversation during all of the delays!).

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I’ve now done TWO half marathons!

Even with all of the adventures, I somehow pulled off a 2hr 29 min 51 sec finish! It was BRUTALLY hard. All of the limited running and training problems, combined with the weather made for a VERY tough run, but I did it!!!

After a hot bath, some good food, and a quick nap, I got all dressed up for the spring opener at Churchill Downs. My parents get tickets every year, and it was a blast! I LOVED seeing all of the pretty dresses and beautiful hats!

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Of course, I got to wear my own awesome hat!

Since I’d run the minimarathon this morning, and this evening was such a special treat, I chose not to track my eating today. I still kept loose track of what I was consuming, so that I didn’t go totally overboard, but I didn’t stress over it.

I’ll be back to full tracking tomorrow!

Day 7 – Weigh-in

27 Apr 2017

Well, I’m back to the 150’s, but just barely.

Day 7

Today was decidedly NOT green, but considering I drove all evening instead of running, I’m good with it!

I’ve taught all day. I’ve driven all evening, and now I’m going to sleep!

Day 6 – Packing

I will be leaving from school tomorrow to head for Louisville! Remember back when I started this training cycle? I was consistently running 10 min miles! I was consistently running 20+ miles/week! I was a solid 8 lbs lighter than I am right now! I was pushing for a 2:10 finish and a new PR!

Then came the ice, followed my knee/hip issues, followed by the flu, and then the flu again, and 18 other stupid things.

In March, I ran a grand total of 40 miles! Seriously! FORTY!! What did I do instead of running? Why, I ate, of course (duh!). Hence, the weight gain, and the slowing down.

So my goals have changed.

There will be no PR, but I’m pretty confident that I will finish. I’m planning to stick with the 2:30 pacers for as long as I can. Maybe it will be the whole way? That would be cool! I’d be happy with a 2:30 finish!

Realistically, I know I can hit 10 miles with them. After that… Whatever happens, happens.

My bags are packed, and I ran my last pre-race 5K today. I’m as ready as I’m going to be!

Day 6

Well, looky there, another green day!

Day 5 – New Shoes

While in the big city for the color run on Sat. I stopped by Fleet Feet and got new shoes! I’ve been wearing Asic Cumulus for almost 2 years now. They’ve worked well for me, and my one foray into trying a pair of Brooks led to a nasty heal blister.

Sadly, I’ve recently developed a bruise on my right ankle. I know it sounds weird, but after several weeks of experimentation, I’m fairly certain that it’s from my running shoes.  Hence, the trip to real running shoe store to actually try on some actual different shoes.

I found a pair of Saucony shoes that appeared to be perfect. I’m not sure what model… *thinking*… I should probably look at that.

Anyway, they are pink – which is the least important part of picking running shoes, but that’s almost why it excited me even more! I don’t even consider color when picking shoes, so when they end up pink, it’s an awesome bonus!

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New shoes are always so exciting!

I took them out for a 3.5 mile spin this afternoon, and they felt great!

Day 5

Oh look! It’s Green! I had almost forgotten that was a thing!!

Day 4 – Book Club

My county has a book club, and a lot of women I know are in it. I’ve been invited to join them numerous times over the last couple years, but Hubby and I have always felt that there just wasn’t enough time for me to commit to another group. Then… Hubby found himself riding in a vehicle with our county art teacher, who’s in the book club. She was telling him about it, and he was like, “Oh, my wife would love that! I wonder why she doesn’t participate?”

Of  course, when he came home and told me all about it, I reminded him that we’ve discussed it a few times… and he looked at me like I had four heads.

I don’t really understand what goes on inside his head, but I love him dearly! He informed me that I “HAD” to join the book club, and “Of COURSE, he would make the time to take of Little Man.” I just smiled at him, nodded, and ordered the book to join the club.book

Tonight was my first meeting. We read “The Forgetting Time,” which I mostly liked, even though it was slow to get started. Unfortunately, I get really nervous at new social gathering (even though I already knew half the people there). When I get nervous, I tend to babble like a moron. At one point, I realized that I was telling a woman, who did not care about YA lit, all about the a YA book I recently read. I could see the boredom on her face, and I couldn’t make my mouth stop moving! When I finally stopped, she looked at me and said, “So that was interesting,” and walked away!!!

It was not the most successful of evenings, for me, but overall, I enjoyed the group (even if they must now think I’m a babbling idiot! I plan to go back next month, because you know, if I quit doing everything after I made a fool of myself, I’d never do anything!

Day 4

We all brought desserts to book club, and I indulged. I felt like I kept it reasonable.

Day 3 – cooking

Today was my last long run before next weekend’s half. I was planning to do 10 miles, but it started to rain as I was passing my house after 8.5 miles, and I decided that was good enough.

Then I headed for the kitchen.

I always used to keep unstuffed cabbage rolls and/or spaghetti squash with mushrooms, spinach, beef or sausage, and a creamy red sauce portioned in the freezer for an easy lunch grab when I didn’t feel like (or hadn’t had time to make) my usual salmon. This is one of the things that been missing the last couple months, and I decided to get back to it.

I love sausage in both recipes, because of the flavor it adds, but I hate how much it ups the calories. Since I was making both recipes today, I mixed 1 lb of 93% lean beef with 1 lb of mild Italian sausage. Then I split that in half, so that each recipe had 1/2 lb of sausage and 1/2 lb beef.

I did cheat by using coleslaw mix instead of chopping my own cabbage, but since I’d promised apple pie for book club tomorrow night, I was all about the short cuts!

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a pot of Unstuffed Cabbage Rolls – all of the flavor, but a lot less work (and healthier, too!)

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and a portion of my favorite spaghetti squash recipe topped with Italian cheese

Both recipes turned out great, and I ended up with 5 portions of spaghetti squash and 6 big portions of unstuffed cabbage rolls!

When Hubby heard that I was making pie for book club, he asked me to make one for the house, too. I’m not a huge fan of pie (which is why I chose to make it, when asked to bring a dessert – it’s minimally tempting), so if I’m going to have apple pie, it’s going to be home made, from scratch, and topped with vanilla bean ice cream.

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Homemade apple pie!

All of this cooking (plus dished & dinner) meant that I spent about 3 hours standing in on my rather tired, post-long-run-legs. I’m really glad I stopped at 8.5 miles today! Given how sore and achy my legs are tonight, I’d be miserable if I’d done the full 10.

Day 3

So I may have indulged in a bit more pie than I should have 😉