GBN: Week 9

A litlte warning-this is going to get sappy.

Let me start off by saying two things.

1. I cannot believe the Ragnar Relay is 8 days away! I am so excited and nervous..excited because it’s going to be awesome,  and nervous because of my long leg…I haven’t gotten as much distance in as I’d like…eek!

2. Nine weeks is not a long time. But after just nine weeks, I feel amazing. Not only are my clothes fitting better, but I feel like I can take on the world. I’ve always considered myself a strong female, and working on the physical aspect of strength has given me a total confidence boost, inside and out.

Throughout these nine weeks, I’ve had a few readers tell me that they’ve been motivated to start (or continue) their own fitness journeys, partly because of this series. They’ve also shared some of their triumphs and challenges with me.  Not gonna lie, I was really surprised by this and extremely flattered.

It surprises me that people read this little blog…and it surprises me more that people would draw inspiration from me…I’m just a regular person, doing something I enjoy…not something I am particularly good at, mind you, but something I love that happens to keep me going…and taking stupid pictures along the way.

Anyone can run. Seriously.

I don’t really know what to say other than this; you push me even further. So thank you. I hope that you realize how amazing you truly are and how fun this journey can be…

Not gonna lie, there are days when I have felt like giving up (my 8 mile run last week, for example), but knowing that there are readers friends out there who are cheering me on has convinced me to keep going and to lace up my sneakers another day.

Thank you.

Keeping with this theme, I have so many people who inspire me and who I looked to when getting back on track…or if I need an extra push. I don’t think I have ever really told them… So thank you to Kristy, James, Chelsea, Jona, Farmer Ben, and Liz Dukes. 

Now, onto Week 9!

After a rough 8 mile run that left me feeling really discouraged and in a lot of pain, I took a couple of days off to regroup and rest. I hated not getting in a run for two days, but I needed the rest.

Saturday-4.7 miles. The hubs and I decided to do one of our usual routes backwards. For some reason, this direction is alway hard for me and I don’t know why. I started out feeling slow and clunky, but per usual, at mile two, I really found my stride and got in the zone. Most of the run is a slow incline, with a nice downhill in the last mile and a half.

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My hair is super sexy.

We finished strong and the only pain I had was from a bad wardrobe decision/lack of options due to laundry (Long story short/TMI-a lot of my running bottoms are now too big and cause unnecessary friction. Ouch! #RealTalkonNoelle’sNotebook).

Sunday and Monday-No run. The aforementioned wardrobe injury was a bit worse than I thought… I’ll say no more…#MoreNNRealTalk.

On Sunday, the hubs and I attended and worked at a fundraiser, on top of church and work so there wasn’t much time for running.

Monday was spent at work and then searching for appropriate and properly fitted running shorts. Thank God. I picked up some sweet tights for the Ragnar at Target!

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Farmer Ben was not happy to be seen with me.

Tuesday-4.42 miles. Again, this was an old standby route. Farmer Ben and I were up bright and early on Tuesday morning to ensure that we got a run in. Armed with my new compression capris, I started out like a champ. I withered a little bit about two miles in but managed to finish strong. The endorphins from this run kept me going all day and into the evening. I love that!

Photo Fail: Accidental Deletion…a picture of the gorgeous sunrise, instead!

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Sunrise. Perfection.

Wednesday-6.3 miles. We had to do an evening run because we slept too late, but it was well worth it. The hubs and I met in our usual spot but veered off or our usual path and decided to run all over town. We visited a favorite route from last summer and darted through the main drag. This was a win. I felt ready for anything after this run…

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This is my “oh crap! I forgot to take a picture right after my run” face. I hope this doesn’t happen again. Yikes!

Thursday-TBA. Okay. I admit it, I still haven’t mastered this whole getting up early thing. Truth be told, I was late to work this morning. But I packed a bag and am pounding the pavement after work tonight. I’m a woman on a mission.

Total Mileage-15.42 (so far!)

Overall: I think this was a good week. Not super high on the mileage but I got some good runs in. With the race a short eight days away, I’m looking for balance and I think this was a good week in that respect.

Goals for next week: One more long run before the race. That’s all I want. After that, I’ll be happy.


A Reminder to Myself…

Whenever I start to think that my schedule is too hectic, I remind myself…

Image Courtesy of Glamour Health & Fitness Blog, Vitamin G.

Make time for it. Happy running.


Since When Is It Friday?!

Yeah, it’s been a long day. I may or may not be counting down to 9 pm.

But … keeping with the theme of motivation… here is another little tidbit for your viewing pleasure:

 

Taken from motivationintohabit.tumblr.com/

 

And another…. I heard on the radio this afternoon that physical activity is proven to reduce the effects of depression by 50%…that’s as much as some prescription anti-depressants. Physical activity can be anything-gardening, dancing, cleaning, running, swimming, walking…it just has to be vigorous. Not that most of us didn’t already know this…I feel a whole heck of a lot better after working up a sweat…but good information.  Food for thought.

Taken from Aasics

 

Also… I am on day two of the burpee challenge. Let’s do this!!!

What are some of your motivations? What are some of your hangups? Do you have any fitness goals for March?

Happy running!


Just Keep Movin’!

Oh, well…hello there! It’s snowing you say? What?! No!

It snowed today. Am I surprised? No. Am I happy about it? Yes. But don’t tell my husband. He’s not a fan.

Anyway, on a completely unrelated note, I’ve been having trouble focusing lately. I can’t seem to multi-task. I’ve also been stressing because I haven’t been getting in as many quality workouts as I would like…and I haven’t been eating as clean as I’d like…working in a pub does not help… so it means that I need to make a conscious effort, starting with taking time to make healthy snacks/meals, and taking another few moments to throw a container in my bag. I did this today. So proud of myself.

It also means I really need to befriend 5:00-7:00 in the morning. With my schedule, that’s the best time for me to pound the pavement. Lord help me. Seriously.

I can do this. I know I can. The biggest part is just… starting!

A good friend of mine (Hi Liz!!!) joined me on myfitnesspal (find me: nre820!)  and has been super motivational. We have been trading inspirational photos/words of wisdom over the last few days and I’m trying to keep all of these things in mind.  ~Side note: Liz, you’re rocking this. You’re amazing. The end.~ 

Also, shout-out to my friend Kristy. She’s been posting updates on her workouts/half marathon training. She’s unstoppable. You go girl!

Anyway, here is one of my favorite little motivators:

Taken from Tumblr-motivationintohabit.

Another awesome motivator? I joined the March Burpee Challenge-Thanks to Kim P. for this idea!!! The goal is to do burpees everyday-100 per day or…as many as you can. If you’re not sure what a burpee is, go here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burpee_(exercise)

Anyway, that’s all for today. Keep movin’! Here goes nothing!


Stronger

I was a bit weary to publish this post… I stewed for quite some time before hitting the button.

I’m not one to blast my problems to the world or complain about the imperfections in my life because, to be quite honest, I have been very blessed.  That being said, lately, for whatever reason, I have been seriously stressed about some silly and some-not -so-silly things.

Most of them are things that everyone stresses about; finances, time, friendships, working out, finances, time, cold season…

I’ve also had to watch someone close to me go through a very difficult time. Admittedly, some of their troubles are self-inflicted. But a lot of them are not. It’s really difficult to watch this and not be able to help them. I’ve been praying for them every day. I’ve also been trying to do little things, talking to others, talking to this person, encouraging them… but it’s gotten to the point where there is almost nothing left to do…mostly because they have given up.

Recently, I visited with this person and it absolutely shocked me. I’ve seen them go through phases like this before, but never this bad. It absolutely broke my heart. After spending a few hours with them, I was drained. I usually keep a pretty upbeat attitude but I had a heck of a time doing so while spending time with them. I feel guilty even though I know it’s not my fault.

I’ve had a few personal rough patches over the last ten years and gone through some dark times, but I’ve learned that at the end of the day, you can’t let your problems consume you. Yes, you have to take responsibility for your actions, but you also have to let them go. You have to learn from your mistakes and keep moving on… or you’ll never get up from rock bottom. I’ve also learned, that no one else can do this for you. It’s something you have to want and something you have to work at. Every day.

One of my favorite quotes is this:

 “Pero el secreto de la vida esta en caerse siete veces y levantarse ocho.” 
-Paulo Coehlo

Translation? But the secret of life is falling down seven times and standing up eight.

I also love this quote from Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird:

“I wanted you to see what real courage is… It’s when you know you’re licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what.”

During the worst of times, I still find great comfort in my faith. This does NOT mean that I haven’t been angry with God, it’s easy to blame the All Mighty when things get tough… and holy cow, there have been some times where I have been completely infuriated…but I also realize that He sticks with me…even when I screw up and I would rather hide under my covers than face the world.

There have been times when I’ve wondered if and when things would ever get better… years later, I’d look back and realize that I was doing exactly what I was supposed to be…even though at the time I never thought I’d get through it alive.

One thing that people-including myself- often forget is that, yes, God is fighting in our corner, but you also have to know when to take make a move. He can only do so much.

Anyway…I was still feeling a bit down this morning after my recent visit. I was driving into work and heard this song while flipping through the channels…I realize it’s about a breakup and moving on…so the lyrics don’t necessarily go with this situation. But the main point of the song rings true, What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

In short,  I’ll continue to help them in every way that I can. I’ll continue to pray for them. And I’ll continue to fight my own battles, knowing that I am not alone. Sometimes all we need is a reminder to lift us up and get back on track. I hope this helps that person.


And Then She Did Lunges… Ouch

Yesterday turned out to be a bit more productive than I anticipated…

I started out on the wrong foot; hitting the snooze button until the last possible minute. Luckily, my husband is very understanding. He got up to make me a healthy breakfast (Oatmeal with a scoop of peanut butter and a cup of coffee-to go), packed a sensible lunch (curried vegetables and black rice) and went out to start my car. I don’t know what I would do without this man.

Anyway, it turned out to be a pretty productive day at work, but when 4:00 rolled around,  I was kicking myself for not getting up earlier in the morning to run-I knew that I wouldn’t be home until 9pm (The joys of having two jobs). In short, I was feeling frustrated and angry at myself.

My reasoning?

I can eat well until  I turn blue in the face, but that alone is not going to get me closer to that half marathon. Even if I get up and walk around the office a few more times, or park further away, it’s not going to replace that deliberate act of going for a run. The fact that I haven’t been running exercising lately is starting to wear on me.

I went to my other job and thought about how this week had been a running/exercise flop. When I got home, I made a quick dinner (Annie’s Organic Mac & Cheese-sub Greek yogurt for milk-Yum!) and continued stewing.

And then, something funny happened. I just…stopped. I went into my bedroom, put on some sweats and a t-shirt and got down on my floor. Before I knew it, I was doing crunches. Then push-ups and back extensions. I even did some squats and lunges. I ended with some leg raises. And then, I did it all again. When I finished, my legs felt shaky, I banged my knee on the last set of lunges and I was sweating. But I felt good.

Ben walked in while I was doing my last few leg raises. He was a bit surprised, but it inspired him to do some push-ups and crunches, too. God, I love this man.

Today, I am sore. Walking up and down stairs is pure torture. It’s hard to bend over and my upper body is feeling a bit tender. But it was worth it. It’s a good sore that I haven’t felt in a couple of months.

I realize that this is a very small step, but it’s still that; a step in the right direction.  I know I have a long way to go, but at least I’ve started… Finally.

What are some of the at-home exercises you do? What are some of your work-out hangups?

I’ll end with some clean eating motivation, sent to me by one of my best friends in the world (via tumblr/pinterest).

Remember this.

Until next time. And remember, you can still be My Fitness Pal. Find me, username nre820.