Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Tuesday Speedwork

Last night's speed work was kind of fun. We were to do 400m, 600m, 800m, 1000m, 800m, 600m, 400m, with a 200m rest between each. It was a pyramid. We decided to shoot for each 200m in 1:05 which is 5 seconds slower than we did last week, so we could get an even pace and not feel wiped out by the 1000m. Here's how it went:

400 - 2:08
600 - 3:11
800 - 4:13
1000 - 5:18
800 - 4:13
600 - 3:08
400 - 1:59

We poured it on a bit for the last 400m set. Once again we were the last ones out there. Everyone else was already cooling down. During the cool down, we run the opposite direction on the track, so people were coming at us in our lane. It was a little embarrassing to still be out there slugging when everyone else was finished. It's not easy being in level two.

What's Going On

This is how my week is going.

I helped my son and his girlfriend move in to their new place on Saturday. I'm finding out that I can't drink alcohol anymore. I had a few beers at Chris' place during the move and then I woke up at 2:30 am on Sunday and could not get back to sleep. The same thing happened the weekend before when I had two glasses of wine. What's up with that?

So needless to say, I didn't get up for my planned 14 mile long run on Sunday. I was just too wiped out. Sunday afternoon we went over to Chris' and helped him build his new Ikea furniture.

Work got in the way on Monday, so I didn't get to the gym at lunch. I went after work for my Firm Parts/Awesome Abs class and you won't believe it - I forgot my running shoes. AGAIN.

Yesterday I had a training session at work over lunch, so no gym again. I did manage to go to the track last night for my speed work.

I feel like I'm on a downward spiral this week. I have two more days where lunch is being provided at work, so it's impossible to enter my food intake in to SparkPeople. And I'll be missing my lunch time workouts, and I'll be missing my Friday Body Flow class due to a meeting I have to go to. More on that later. It's exciting but I'm not ready to announce anything yet.

Everyone has one of those weeks every now and again, so I'll just get through it and carry on next week. No big deal. Life happens.

Friday, January 26, 2007

Almost Forgot

41 pushups today.

Stupid Gym Stories

Yesterday I went to the gym at noon as usual. When I got there I realized I had left my running shoes at the office. Our gym has a policy where you have to wear shoes (Duh!), but I wasn’t about to waste 15 minutes of my lunch hour going back for them, so I decided to sneak in wearing socks. I thought, I’ll just do my workout until someone asks me to leave. It was upper body and ab day, so I knew it wouldn’t interfere with any of the exercises. I hustled through the workout in record time, thinking, I gotta get this in before I get caught. And guess what, no one said a word to me. I totally got away with it.

Today was Body Flow. Body Flow is a choreographed combination of Tai Chi, Yoga and Pilates, so we do it in bare feet on yoga mats. The woman in front of me had her mat kind of close to mine and when we were doing the balance track, so almost stuck her foot in my face. Whew! She had smelly feet. Later on, someone nearby farted. It smelled too. I couldn’t wait to get out of there.

I go through a lot in the name of health and beauty. I better be down a pound when I weigh in tomorrow morning.


Last night with the running group, Coach gave us the option to run 8 or 10 miles. It was so cold, I opted for 8. As soon as we left the building I could feel my face freeze up. It felt better after a couple of miles, but then about 5 miles into the run, my outer thighs froze. What a weird feeling. They were numb and tingly at the same time. I was tired, but didn’t want to take very many walk breaks because it was just too damned cold to walk. I checked the temperature when I got home and it was -19 C.

I was too cold to blog about it when I got home. I just made a hot chocolate (low fat of course) and hunkered down under a blanket in my favourite recliner. I watched my very first episode of Brothers & Sisters. It was kind of dumb, but I like Sally Field, and Rob Lowe is easy on the eyes, so I might watch it again. It can be my Thursday night post run TV show.

This morning I fluffed my clothes in the dryer and then put them on warm. It felt so good. It was -16 when I left for work with a windchill of -25. We had such a mild December, why are we getting this crappy weather now?

Weekly Recap

Tomorrow is my official weigh-in day, but I snuck a peak at the scale this morning and I didn't lose any weight this week. That got me to wondering, WHY???

I track all of my eating and exercise on SparkPeople, so I took a look at this week's numbers. From last Saturday until yesterday, I did 439 cardio minutes, burning 3,786 calories. That doesn't even include the two 30 minute weight training sessions. So if a pound is 3,500 calories and I burned 3,786, doesn't it stand to reason that I should lose a pound?

So then I took a look at what I ate this week. I was over on my calories 3 days this week (Saturday to Thursday). In total I ate 12,177 calories for a daily average of 2,029. My daily goal is to eat between 1,270 and 1,620. So there you have it, I'm still eating too much. This eating thing is really hard for me. The only junk food I had was cake and ice cream on Sunday when we celebrated hubby's birthday, and that was after running 12.5 miles in the freezing cold. I felt I deserved it.

Today I have another 30 minute weight training session planned and my 60 minute Body Flow class. I'll try to be good with my eating today and see if the numbers change by tomorrow morning.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Tonight's Run Brought to You by the Letter S and the Number 5

Tonight was speed work at the track. Level 2 (my level) was to do 5 x 800 metres with a 200 metre rest between each set. Here's how mine went:

1 - 4:15
2 - 4:10
3 - 4:06
4 - 4:04
5 - 3:58

As you can see, each one got a little faster. I had too much dinner tonight and was feeling sluggish at first, but I picked up half way through. It was a good workout.

Oh yeah, I also did 40 pushups today.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Really Chilly and Really Warm

I did it. I registered for the Really Chilly Road Races today. Good thing I picked these babies up today:

These are the wind mitts Pat lent to me yesterday. I can't wait to try them out.

Long Cold Run

Yesterday I checked the weather network when I got up to get ready for my 12.5 mile long run. It was -16. Yikes! I considered not going since I hate running in really cold weather. But I sort of made a commitment to run in all kinds of weather this winter, so I put on two pairs of tights, two long sleeve tops, mitts over my gloves, and off I went to meet the group.

Coach gave us the route, and oh no! We were going to do the North Street Hill, as if we didn’t get enough hills on Thursday. North Street Hill is kind of steep and it seems like it is never ending, You go around a couple of bends and it’s still going up.

So we started out. Everybody was double suited against the cold. After a few blocks, we were all hot, but that wasn’t to last. The first time I took a drink from my water bottle, I spilled water on my mitts. They froze in no time, and my hands started to get cold.

When we got to North Street Hill, we took a little water break and told each other we could rest at the top. Then off we went. It really wasn’t too bad. We actually ran the whole way which is a huge improvement for us.

When we got to the last water stop, one person in our group needed a pee break, so off she went into the A&P to find a public washroom while Pat and I waited at the water stop. I think that might have been a mistake because after that I felt really cold and sluggish and we still had 5.5 miles to go. We ran back through the park, and it was really cold by the river. My butt cheeks went numb and I thought I might be getting frost bite on my fingers. Pat lent me her windproof mitts and they were like little ovens. My hands warmed up in no time. I’m definitely getting myself a pair.

The air seemed slightly warmer after we left the park, and we made it back in one piece, but we were so cold, we weren’t sure we could even do our stretches. I checked the weather when I got home and it was still only -8. I really felt like I accomplished something, because I’ve been known to wimp out on days like that. Yay me.

I spent the afternoon preparing hubby’s birthday dinner and the kids came over. By 10:00 pm, I was ready to crash. And I did. Leaving the mess in the kitchen to clean up this morning.

Friday, January 19, 2007

More Ramblings

I went over on my calories yesterday, so this morning I thought I'd hop on the scale and see how much damage I did. Imagine my surprise when I saw I'm down a pound. Tomorrow is my official weigh in for the week, so I won't get too excited yet. It might just be that I'm low on fluids this morning.

I should have mentioned in my previous post that I'm in level two in my running group, so I was slated for a 7 mile run last night. It turned out to be 8.5 based on my Garmin's reading. There's a standing joke in our group that our coach never gets the miles right. We call them John miles. He lived up to his reputation last night.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Thursday Ramblings

I don't like CSI Miami because the acting is bad and David Caruso annoys me. But today I found a reason to watch it. Apparently there is a drinking game where you take a drink every time David Caruso removes his sunglasses. You can be sloshed 20 minutes into the show.

I go to the gym most weekdays on my lunch hour to either do a quick weight workout or take an aquafit class. I always hop in the shower to rinse off before dressing to go back to work, because nobody likes a stinky co-worker. For the past couple of weeks, the water has been cold to lukewarm, so I just splash around a little bit then get the heck out. But today the water was deliciously hot. I was in there enjoying myself when I heard one of the little old ladies from my aquafit class exclaim, "This water is so warm, I think I'm having an orgasm!" No kidding. This woman must be at least 70 years old. Does she even remember what an orgasm is?

So tonight before our run, Coach says "I shortened the run tonight. Level one goes 5.5 miles, Levels two and three 7, and Level four, 8 miles." So off we went thinking we were getting off easy. Only two problems with that. Coach picked the hilliest route he could find in the city and my Garmin said we went 8.5 miles. Some people were a little cranky when they got finished.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Need for Speed

I did my first speed training session of the year last night. We train on a 200 metre indoor track and last night I had to do 6 x 600 metres with a 200 metre rest between each set. Here's how they went:

Set 1: 3:01
Set 2: 3:00
Set 3: 2:58
Set 4: 2:56
Set 5: 2:54
Set 6: 2:54

So I averaged around an 8 minute mile for each set of 600. To meet my goal of running a 50 minute 10K, this is the pace I will have to do. I was a little winded after each set, but I think it's doable.

On another note, I did 35 pushups yesterday. At this rate, I'll have to change my goal of doing 50 pushups by the end of the year. Could I do 75? 100?

Monday, January 15, 2007

Deep Freeze

Why I hate winter...

It's hard to tell from the picture, but my car was covered in ice this morning. It took 20 minutes to get it cleaned off. There was more freezing rain during the day, so I had more scraping to do after work. It's snowing now and is turning colder. This is only the second storm we've had this winter, but both of them have been doozies.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Cold and Wet

That's how my run ended this morning. It didn't start out that way, though. I checked the weather forecast when I got up and there was a weather advisory about imminent freezing rain and snow. Everything looked dry outside, so I left for the long run with my training group. We had 10 miles to do this morning, and the run started out really well. The temperature was hovering around the freezing mark. But with 3 miles to go, the freezing rain started. It started coming down harder and in pellets. We decided to take a little shortcut back as we were getting soaked and my hair was crusty from the ice. When we got back, however, the Garmin said we did 10 miles. I hate running in rain and usually wimp out of any run where I might get wet. I made a new years resolution to not be such a wimp this year. So far, I've done two rainy runs and lived to talk about it.

On the diet front, I was over my calorie limit three days last week. I gotta tell you, 1,600 calories isn't very much food. I didn't weigh myself this weekend because of TOM bloating.

Hubby weighed in and he has gained back the pound he lost a week ago. He's starting back to work after 6 months off due to hip replacement surgery, so I'm sure the weight will start to come off a little easier for him.

I made the most awesome dinner tonight. It was Baked Ziti with Shrimp and Scallops. I found the recipe on the Cooking Light website. The recipe called for a bottle of roasted red peppers, but I roasted my own on my new gas range. It was fun.

Friday, January 12, 2007

No More Blur

I did it. A non-blurry header picture. My problem was that I was trying to resize my pictures too much. This time I just cropped it for height and left the width alone. Blogger automatically sized the width to fit when I uploaded the picture.

Fun with Avatars

Check out my cute Avatar on the sidebar. It took me about an hour to figure out how to include it in my blog. Now if I can just figure out how to get a header picture that isn't blurry. I'll keep working on it.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

New Header Picture

Well, I figured out how to add a picture to my header, but it came out blurry. I'll have to work on it some more later. I'm too tired right now.


I just did 30 pushups.

I switched to the new blogger, so I'm experimenting with the layout. Hopefully I can figure out how to add a nice heading. I want it to reflect what I'm about.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

On the Farm Front

On the weekend, we picked out kitchen cupboards and countertops for the small house on the farm. The interior painting is supposed to be done this week. Once the cupboards are in, we can get the plumbing fixed and the floors laid, and it should just about be ready to rent out.

I'd like to get some painting done in the big house too, but there's no heat or running water in there right now. We hired someone to paint the small house, but we're going to do the big house ourselves. It's a little overwhelming and I wish we could just get started. If we new this winter was going to be so mild, we probably wouldn't have shut the water off, but we're so afraid of frozen pipes bursting.

I should just enjoy this time and concentrate on my running right now. We'll get the work done on the farm all in good time.

The Scale Lies

I've been diligently tracking my food intake in
SparkPeople and working out like crazy, and the damned scale hasn't budged. Yesterday, I noticed my pants felt a little loose, so this morning I took measurements, and guess what? I'm down a 1/2 inch on my waist and a 1/2 inch on my hips. Yippee! That means I'm gaining muscle while losing fat. I can take being this weight as long as I know I'm not covered in a layer of fat.

Hubby lost a pound last week. He's set a goal to lose 28 lbs. by July 14. He's not an exerciser, and he loves to eat sweets, so it won't be easy. He goes back to work next week after being off for 6 months (hip replacement), so the weight will probably start to fall of pretty fast till he gets used to the routine again.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

I Couldn't Take the Guilt

So I went to the running store this afternoon and joined the Gold Team. I tried to lay low this morining with the training group, but the coach saw me. He made an announcement that if we're not registered by Tuesday, we won't be allowed to continue. I'm now past the cut off on my credit card, so it was safe to put more on it. I really need to set some money aside so I don't get caught like this next year. I'll be reimbursed by my company, but they can be slow in paying.

It was a beautiful morning for a run. The temperature was hovering around the freezing mark, there was no wind, and the sun even came out while we were out there. I met up with 3 of my running buddies and we set out to do 10.5 miles. Two of us wanted to do the whole distance and the other two were doing 7 (they're training for a half marathon).

Just past the half way point, another runner we didn't know came up to us and asked if she could run with us. She's a former member of our training group, but burned out a few years ago, so she has just been doing casual running for the past couple of years. She decided she needed to return to the group to help her with motivation. She's about our age and runs the same pace, so it was good and also nice to make a new friend. She's also done Boston, so I can get some tips from her. It'll be great.

The run was fairly uneventful, but it felt good. I didn't lose anything in my level of fitness over the off season. My Garmin said I did 9.70 miles in 1:51:07.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Marathon Training Group

I haven't registered for the marathon training group because Christmas has left me in a little cash deficit. But I did get good news at work the other day. My company has changed their policy on paying health club dues. They have expanded it to include things like yoga and pilates classes and classes taken at community centres. So I put in a request to see if they would pay my gold team membership at the running store and guess what, they said yes! They will pay 100% up to a maximum of $500 per year. It won't completely cover both the running and GoodLife memberships, but I'll end up only being about $130 out of pocket.

Anyway, my coach came up to me on Thursday night and asked if I had registered yet, because he didn't have a training booklet for me. I was a little embarrassed because I thought I could just lay low and he wouldn't notice me. So I guess I'll sign up tomorrow and put in my expense report right away to get reimbursed before it shows up on my credit card bill.

So we all met at GoodLife on Thursday night. The coach gave us our usual pep talk. My friends have been promoted to level two, which means they will be doing more mileage. Since I don't have my booklet yet, I don't know what level he's going to put me in, but it doesn't matter, I'm going to run with my buddies.

We set out for our four mile run - in the rain. What happened to the nice weather we had all day? It wasn't too bad, but we were soaked when we got back.

It was good to see everyone and catch up with them. It almost felt like the first day of school when you haven't seen some of your friends all summer.

Thursday, January 04, 2007


That's the number of pushups I did last night. Yay me!

Tonight is the first night of my spring marathon training group. We'll have a talk from the coach, get our training booklets and do an easy 4 mile run. The weatherman says it's going to be +9 Celcius with a mix of sun and cloud today. Of course, the sun will be gone by the time we get out there, but what a perfect day to start training.

I've decided to do the Forest City Road Races full marathon on Mother's Day this year. I've never done it and 2007 is the race's 25th anniversary, so there will be special commemorative medals. The only drawback is, I don't like the course and I don't think I'll be able to break four hours. This race is in the city where I live, so the route is very familiar to me. This could be an advantage or disadvantage, only time will tell.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

So Far So Good

Day one of my new fitness regime went well. I re-dedicated myself to Sparkpeople to track calories. I was a little over for the day, and only drank 7 glasses of water, but felt good about it as a whole.

I went to the gym at noon to do some lower body and ab work, and then after work I ran 2 miles on the treadmill before going to Bodypump class. Bodypump is this great class at the GoodLife Club. It is weight training set to music. Mo Hagan, Fitness Director for all GoodLife Clubs across Canada teaches on Tuesday nights. She is very motivational and so fit, you just want to try harder to impress her. So, needless to say, I used a little heavier weights than I'm used to and this morning I'm feeling it.

The new class schedules at the club start next week. I want to do some spin classes. I'm going to have to work out a schedule to get in my swims, bikes and runs so I can kick ass at the "Try-A-Tri's" this summer.

I tested myself to see how many pushups I can do. I pumped out 20, but might have been able to squeeze one more out. My goal is 50 by the end of the year, so I've got some work to do, but it's achievable.

Tonight is Firm Parts at the gym. I hope my shoulders hold out. There's a killer ab class after that. I can hardly wait.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Reflections on 2006 and Looking Ahead

Two of my major goals for 2006 were to qualify for the Boston Marathon and to come in first in my age group in a "Try-a-Tri" triathlon. I am happy to report I achieved both. Qualifying for Boston was one of the proudest moments of my life. You see, I have never considered myself an athlete. I was always the last to get picked for any team I tried out for in school. Cheerleading was my forté.

So, on to 2007! I'm going to list my goals here in the hopes it will keep me accountable.

Running Goals:
- Run a marathon in under 4 hours
- Run a 50 minute 10K
- Do more speed training on the treadmill

- 2x per week
- Get a wetsuit

- Conquer my fear of my road bike (specifically clipless pedals)
- Learn how to change a flat tire
- Ride my mountain bike on the Lynn Valley Trail on weekends
- Get a bike trainer

- Stretching 2x per week
- Weight training 2 - 3x per week
- Build upper body strength
- Build core strength
- Be able to do 50 pushups (manly ones, not wimpy ones)

- Goal weight - 125 lbs
- Take my vitamin, iron and Vitamin E supplements every day
- Research food sources of iron and calcium

- Eat 5 - 6 small meals a day
- Drink 8 glasses of water a day
- Plan healthy meals and do more cooking

So those are my personal goals. I also have goals for our farm renovations. We need to varnish the knotty pine in bathroom and the ceilings in the dining room and kitchen. I also want to strip the wallpaper off the kitchen walls and paint the kitchen, laundry room and back porch. If I get all that done inside the house this year, I'll be happy, because a lot of that will be happening while I'm training for my spring marathon.

Hubby also says he wants to renovate our kitchen and lay new flooring in the living room and bedrooms in our house in the city. It's going to be a busy year.

I should also set a goal to update my blog more often. I couldn't even remember how to log in this morning. The other day I found the blog of a woman I run with occasionally. She is in the same training group as me. As I was reading her entries from 2005, I kept thinking, hmm, I don't remember that and I know I was there. Updating this blog regularly will keep the memories alive for me, so no excuses.

So I'll have to break my goals down and create a plan for achieving them, because a goal without a plan is just a dream.