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Waiting…

14 Dec

I’ve been quiet lately. No apologies because once I get back from vacation (we leave Saturday) and make it through the holidays… I anticipate a TON to write about.

Until then, I’ve been waiting. Oh, and counting. I’ve been counting down the days to Disney World like a 6 year old girl. Every morning, I email B with how many days until we leave and a “fun” fact about Disney. I’ve been doing this since October so finding new facts every day has been kind of a fun scavenger hunt. I could probably write a book with all the new things I learned about the amusement park.

Did you know that the parking lots at Magic Kingdom are named after the 7 dwarfs? Well, all but one- Doc. Because Disney didn't want parkers to get confused with the loading "dock."

 

Yeah, I’m full of those facts.

So, we are 3 days out right now. I’ve got several busy days to occupy myself until then. I’m hoping to finish one of my most extensive Christmas presents tonight. (I’ll post about that later.) Oh! And cooking! I’m making another apple pie tonight simply because I can. On Thursday I have a non-pregnancy related ultrasound to occupy my night.

And Friday is my start of vacation. I took the day off so I could have time to drop Foster Pup off at the boarders before they closed. AND I wanted to start my vacation off right with a massage and a manicure. I’ve only gotten a manicure once or twice (for weddings), and I’ve been silently saving for a really good massage since my half marathon. It’s time to cash in.

But it’s not all pampering. I’ve mentioned the ultrasound. I’m dealing with some medical issues right now that I am not ready to discuss- mainly because it is not conclusive. My doctor has put me on some strong antibiotics that have left me feeling dizzy and tired for the next ten days, but we’re still waiting on test results till I know what the next steps are.

So, here I sit in limbo.

 

My Christmas presents are pretty much wrapped and ready to go (or about 3/4ths of the way done), my bags are packed and I’ve purchased another Sookie Stackhouse book for the plane, and I’m dutifully taking a motion-sickness inducing antibiotic.

As for my workout challenge… going well! I’m working on making a vacation plan that wont involve me doing squats while waiting in line for Space Mountain.

 

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My Week as a Vegetarian

14 Nov

Well, here I am. I was sick with a bitchy cold bug that would NOT give up.

And since I didn’t want to basically cough and sneeze over a public treadmill, I avoided working out every day of this week. Seriously. All that was done was a dance class last Sunday and another one (where I moved much slower) yesterday. I was the DJ for the last Sunday session, and because I’m a nerd, here’s my playlist:

My "theme" was "Best of Playlist." Basically, it was all my favorite songs I've ever played at DDPP. I thought it went over really well and the calorie burn was INTENSE.

So, there’s that.

I didn’t work out and I felt somewhat ok with it. I did have some guilt, but then I would cough something up and everything would be justified in my head.

Another thing I didn’t do? Yeah, I didn’t track my eating. BUT, I did do something awesome…

I was a vegetarian for a week!

For some of you, this is isn’t amazing at all. This would be torture of the cruelest kind. And it was once the Taco Bell cravings hit, but I pushed through.

While I dreamed of cheesy gordita crunches, I did do some research. Being a vegetarian helps conservation efforts of the ecosystem. Even if you eat locally, being a meat eater increases your carbon foot print by a TON. As for the numerous health reasons, I would say helping avoid heart disease is a HUGE motivator for me. I also found that my acne and redness in my skin decreased this week by eating vegetarian. And finally, being a vegetarian saved me about $20 in groceries, even after buying meat replacers. Being a scrooge, this is HUGE.

For all these reasons and countless others, I’ve decided to eat vegetarian every other week. I cant go full on vegetarian. I would miss holiday goodies like Thanksgiving turkey or a steak from my dad’s grill. By at least attempting to eat vegetarian two weeks out of a month, I’m still getting lots of those health, economic, and environmental benefits while still getting to indulge my hamburger cravings.

However, I really need to work on increasing my meal creativity. My food this week, as predicted, was super carb heavy. To make up for it, I am going to try to have a past a free week! This may be my hardest challenge yet. Us Italians are ADDICTED to our carb loading pasta dishes. And if I need something to eat quick, I turn to a bag of frozen raviolis. Now, I need to muster all creativity to combat my daemons head on.

No, Cheesesaurus! I will NOT give in to you!

I should probably also practice eating in calorie range. Under 1800 calories is not hard to do. Let’s add that to the list.

So, those are goals #1 and 2 for the week.

Goal #3 is increasing my strength training… again. I failed at this two weeks in a ROW. (Albeit because I was sick this week.) This will be my week of muscle. Here’s my schedule:

Monday- Body Pump or Yoga… The online schedule for my Y is outdated, so I am not sure if Body Pump is actually offered tonight or not.
Tuesday- Run a 5K
Wednesday- Off
Thursday- Run a 5K and ST
Friday- Off… maybe swimming if I dont have any other plans
Saturday- Spin class and ST
Sunday- 10K run and possibly DDPP class

That’s three days of strength and four (possibly five) of cardio.

To recap… my goals of this week are simple: NO pasta of any kind and 3 days of strength training. Pretty easy. I’ll be sure to come back with an update on how my pasta withdrawal is going. I’m assuming it’s going to be messy.

Me on day 3 without my rotini.

Day 3 of the Weekly Challenge

3 Nov

Day 3… and not much happened.

I have class on Wednesday, so fitness is at a zero. I guess I could wake up in the morning and go, but since I am at work/class till 9:30pm, I prefer to enjoy my extra hour in bed.

Anyways, because of class, I didn’t get much done. No paper writing, no knitting, no actual relaxation. I came home, made dinner, watched Modern Family and headed to bed. I’m not even sure if I managed to get through a Doctor Who episode… GAH.

Somebody find me the Tardis and let's rewind!

 

So, that was my yesterday. Exciting, huh?

Here’s my nutrition wrap up. I did fairly well. I could have done without the little bags of chips and cookies…

Tonight’s goals are:

  • Finish my paper!
  • Make dinner (chicken and pasta)
  • Run a 5K and do strength training
  • Drink 8 cups of water (currently at 4)

She's Was Working In a Barbershop…

19 Oct

I think there is only one person who can accurately describe my current feelings, so I’ll let him do all the talking:

..

.

It’s weigh in day.

..

.

I worked my butt off. Wait, scratch that. I didn’t in fact, I apparently worked so hard, I worked some of it back on.

Mother f$%ker.

My workouts last week were awesome:

Friday: Hard 5K
Saturday: Spin class
Sunday: 8 miles on a treadmill… on a g-damn treadmill… while watching the BEARS game, damnit.
Monday: 20 minute intense core workout
Tuesday: 60 minute upper body strength training
This morning: Tempo 5K

To be honest, this has been the best week I’ve had in eating as well. I’ve even gotten back to tracking.

But what did all my hard work and persistence get me? 168.4
(For those keeping score, that’s a ounce weight gain)

I've sunk so low, I'm not even above posting a Garfield cartoon.

Part of me, the evil Fran Drescher side, is like,

“Honey, forget about it! You see those workouts? You’ve been getting back to strength training, which is FAB, but really… you know you gain weight for awhile after pumping irons…”

The other part of me, the Cici Babcock (if you will) screams,

“Puh-lease, you non-sensical twit. You still at candy, chips, and even freakin’ McDonalds. Who are you trying to fool, cause it ain’t your waistline.”

Of course, Fran’s mom has something to add…

Sylvia

“Oh, hunnny… stohp beehting yoself up ovah id! Id wahz a lohng wheek. New dawg, ahnowing clahss, big fight… ah dounat ere an there won hurt ya!”

And because this Nanny reference has to end at some point…

“Most annoying blog post ever.”

All of these highly annoying, fictional characters have a point. I worked out a ton, and strength training does mean some initial weight gain. HOWEVER, while I also ate pretty decently, I slipped up big time in the snack department. The stress of the new dog and some drama doesn’t help either.

What am I going to do? Keep on, keeping on. I’m washing my hands of it and moving on. More strength training, because it makes me feel good, and I am going to continue pushing my 5K runs just because they make me feel great. Next week, I’ll get back to yoga and I’ll make sure that I really sweat it out in my spin class. That’s all I can do at this point.

Vacay

18 Aug

Remember how I wrote that my post-race injury report only included two blisters and some underarm chafing?

Yeah. Forget that.

A day after the race, I started to notice that my left shin was super sore. As in, my ankle to my knee felt both stiff and warm at the same time. The same hip is also acting up.

I have been getting shin splints intermittently throughout my training. Most people do. Rookies get it from wearing non-fitted shoes (get yo ass to a specialty running store and have them watch your gait). Intermediate runners like myself get it from running too hard or too long on hard, cement based surfaces.

Eventually, all that wear and tear results in painful… um… tears in the front part of your shins. Here’s a helpful medical drawing:

 

The only way to cure it? Well, dont do anything on it until it stops hurting. Really, there is no way to make this better. No stretches you can do that will make the soreness go away, and frankly, even icing it just dulls it for awhile. It needs to be coddled like a baby.

And then you can run again…

Which means, that I am out of commission this week. It’s lucky because this weekend’s planned 8 miler would have been hell with Air and Water Show traffic along my path. I prefer my runs to be quiet reflections, not adventures in tourism.

And because I’m taking a week off running, I’m taking off a week of exercise- which sounds horrible. (and it is)

To be quite honest, I ran that race with just about everything in me. The little fibers of my body need to rest and recover right along the duly injured shins. I’ve been dealing with lower back pain for about a month now. Thinking that I would be able to afford myself a nice, professional massage after this race, I ignored it and kept pushing it. Now, well, even sitting is making me cringe.

On a side note, if you could spare about 80 bucks for me to go see a professional, I’d be so ever grateful. I’m taking donations.

So, that’s what is happening this week (aka… nothing).

But, in other news, I finished applying for my Master’s program yesterday. So exciting and scary. I really, really wish I would have focused more in my undergrad on my non-music electives. Some of those classes really hurt my overall gpa. Oh, and that Jazz Tech class, which I stupidly took my freshman year before I understood jazz chords. Frack.

The man, the myth, the lengend... Doug Beach. Yet, even he couldn't teach me how to snap my fingers.

Blisters

1 Aug

Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned.

It has been one week since my last strength training session. My muscles are exhausted. My physical capacity for moving at anything over a turtle’s pace while lifting anything but the remote has dwindled. I am sunburned (and blistered) from relying on a 9 year old to apply lotion at the beach on my pasty back. And my brain has been turned to mush from a proper melting from this man:

I’ve spent my entire weekend in a state of exhaustion, to say the least. On Thursday, I was still feeling feverish, so I wisely took the day off. I never take sick days. I always have this guilt complex about it. I feel like if I can type and answer questions without vomiting, than I should go in. But for some reason, I was compelled to take off Thursday. My head was throbbing, I felt feverish, and my stomach was aching. And my productivity would have been at a zero. So, I reluctantly took the day off to lay around in my pjs, watching tv and checking my work email from home.

On Friday, still feeling ill, I skipped my morning run. I was supposed to do 6 miles, but after about 3/4ths of one, I had to stop. My legs were cramping and my headache was almost unbearable. I knew I had a long day ahead of me, so I just gave in and walked home (tail between legs).

Luckily, I had enough energy to entertain my 9 year old niece for our pre-planned slumber party. We spent several hours at the beach (hence the blistering sunburn on my back… soooo painful), took a bit of a nap, rode the L to the Rainforest Cafe, played in the Faces Fountain, and then saw Beauty and the Beast. I ate too much junk, overloaded on carbs, and spent precious water time jumping over waves instead of actually swimming. But it was worth it to spend some quality time with the little one.

Unfortunately, I learned the pains of waking up a 9 year old at 7am on a Saturday after a long night out. She fell asleep on the ride back home. The baby nephew was awake enough for me to give him his present:

Isn’t this not the most essential toy? We had one (minus the creepy eyes and cup holders) and played with it for years! Now they only make them for the toddler set, so they are much safer with a door lock and foot board, and are about half the size. I do miss the days when we would roll this down the yard at my grandma’s house.

Oh. And I beat Brendan at several hands of poker. I won $2.40 off of him.

Sunday morning, I awoke to beautiful, clear blue skies… which is the opposite of what I wanted to see. I had a 12 mile training run planned and I did not want to run in anything but clouds, a steady breeze, and temps under 70. Instead, I got starting temps at around 82, no breeze, and no shade covering. My first 5 miles were easy, but as soon as I made it for mile 6-7 (easily the hardest because of it’s location right on the water and no shade or benches), I was dead. I slowed and made it to the rest station at mile 8. I then made the decision to suck it up and run past the smelly Lincoln Park zoo trails so I could run under some tree cover. That’s when my watch started fizzing out and telling me that I had run a 22 minute mile. I mean, I guess it could be so, but it then told me I ran a 9 minute mile… so there’ that. Damn GPS. Either way, I finished my 12 miler in a respectable time (that didn’t count my five-seven minute pit stops at the rest areas). I recovered pretty quickly after some Gatorade, soy milk, and a pretty hardy lunch.

8 hours later, I was sitting/standing in historic Wrigley Field waiting for Paul McCartney to come on. He put on an amazing show. I couldn’t help but taking moments to remind myself how much of a dream come true it was. I saw Paul McCartney live. I sang along to Hey Jude and air drummed Let ‘Em In. How cool is that?!?

Anyways, so obviously not much fitness and way too much bad eating. Here’s my intended schedule for this week:
Monday: Spin class (taking it light since my sunburn is horribly painful)
Tuesday: 3 mile run, ST
Wednesday: Rest Day
Thursday: 6 mile run, ST
Friday: Rest Day
Saturday: Spin class, ST
Sunday: 9 mile LSD