Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Motivation and Determination

Katie, over at Runs for Cookies (here) had a great post the other day called "The Difference Between Motivation and Determination" (here).  It is awesome and you should check it out.  I agree with her views 100%.

I do enjoy creating little motivators for myself, but I know that determination is what will get me to my goals.  I thought I would share a couple things which do serve as motivators for me.

Inspiration board

Race bibs and a 10K medal

My half marathon display
My treadmill is in our basement and unfortunately I'll be running there for awhile yet since we just got a huge amount of snow.  The Mill faces the corner and the walls are red. 
I have an upcoming project and that is to decorate those walls.  I bought two magnetic white boards just like my inspiration board above and I'm going to hang one on each wall, and then fill each with motivating and inspiring items like pictures and quotes.  I'm really looking forward to having something more fun to stare at!!  I'll share some photos when I am done.

Do you have a treadmill?  Do you put motivators near by?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Yikes!!! and a DIY

Yikes!  I've updated my weight tracker here on the site through December and it's not pretty.  Skeered!

I wanted to share a little DIY medal display.  It is so simple and perfect for those of us without many medals, actually 1 medal.

I ordered a race photo from my half marathon last July (cha-ching!) and I wanted to display it.  Then I had this puny little medal (seriously, those race medals are not that cool) that I wanted to put somewhere also.  I came up with this.

 Luckily there's a nice blank spot on the corner of the photo and the medal seems to be just the right size for that spot. I looped the medal ribbon around the easel of the frame and wah-lah, perfect display for my home office.

How do you display your precious race medal/photo?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Disconnecting and a New Training Plan

Do you ever feel like you're too connected?  Too much electronics?  I have felt like that a lot lately (says the girl who's selling, selling, selling on eBay in order to buy an iPad). 

I have my iPhone connected to my employer's network.  Part of that is because I am out of the office on Fridays and I work at home a fair amount.  I want to be able to read and respond to email quickly.  But is it necessary?  My employer does not require this of me, I just decided since I've got the phone, might as well do it.  Well, over the weekend I disconnected my email and it was fabulous!!  I think I will at least disconnect on Weekends and maybe at a certain time each night.  You'll probably say just stop reading it.  That would be smart if I could do it, but I can't.  If I see the notification, then I simply must read it.  I'm weird like that.

I also tend to let email interrupt me at work.  I can be working away and then an email comes in and I let it pull me away from what I was doing into whatever someone might need.  I pride myself on being a quick responder, but sometimes I wonder if other aspects of my work suffer.  It might be better to work for a solid hour on a project and then read and respond to email.  I wonder if having set times for reading email might be more efficient.

Multitasking.  This is something I always see on resumes as a strength or skill.  But is it really possibly to multitask.  I watched a time management seminar by Randy Pausch (here) who put that into perspective.  You really cannot do more than one thing well at a time.  You're actually doing multiple things badly.  I do think it is a skill to be able to deal with interruptions efficiently while not letting it derail your efforts on other tasks, but to simultaneously do multiple things at once, I don't believe it's possible.  Except maybe listen to music while working, but do you really hear the music?

I am one of those people who never sits and does one thing when I am at home.  If I'm watching TV, I'm also reading my Kindle or working on my computer.  Sometimes I'm not focusing on the TV at all, but it's on in the background, I'm reading my Kindle, and playing several games of Words with Friends (UN: LoriV518).  I believe this "multitasking" is not helping me relax at all. Why I have been unable to veg out with a book or movie lately is unknown, but I plan to make a change.  My brain needs to slow down and take five, even if it's only for thirty minutes.  It's not necessarily disconnecting, but it's slowing down to breathe a little, and slow the brain from switching gears every five seconds.  I look forward to trying this.

This week I plan to start the Run 10K program I have on my iPhone.  I'm actually going to start on week five where the run/walk intervals are even.  Each day this week looks like this (I'm not sure how that works out to 68 minutes because there will be a 5 minute walk at the end too, but we'll see):
I am looking forward to following this program--I'll be doing weeks 5-13 over the next 9 weeks.  I think it's going to help get me back into running regularly by having a set program to follow.  It's very similar to the Couch to 5K program concept.  And intervals are nice for weight loss. :-)

Do you need to disconnect?  Do you think there is such a thing at efficient "multitasking"?  Are you connected to your employer's network via your cell phone?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Wanted: trade used running shoes for a new blog design?

Anyone interested in a trade?  I have a pair of Adidas Supernova Sequence 3 Running shoes that I would like to trade with somone who can make me a new blog design.  I was going to sell the shoes on eBay, but this trade would benefit me more.  These shoes have around 100 miles on them and are size 8.5.  Anyone, anyone?  Contact me!

Do you love Lara Bars? Here's a giveaway!

Stephanie Anne over at Running to Health is hosting a Lara Bar giveaway!  Enter here!  Yummy!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Monday, January 16, 2012

Don't Mind Me

So I accidentally published a post tonight that I didn't mean to.  Back when I was doing my Welcome 2012 post I started writing and it turned into a major downer.  I should have deleted it, but I saved it with the same title, except I added "The Shitty Version at the end.  Hah!  Now I've published it accidentally.  Whoops!  Well, oh well.  I have deleted it from the blog, but I guess it's still in the  Readers so whatev.  I live with it.  Some of you can get a glimpse of the real downer me from that day.

Let's get this year started!! Goals 2012

From Thanksgiving until mid-January, there is a hustle and bustle about our house.  First the holidays, then birthdays.  And then I'm done until November.  My son's birthday was yesterday (he's hit the double digits now) and that marks the official end to our hustle season!  Now I feel like I can relax more and think about me.  I hope that brings about good things for both weight loss and running for me!

I've been putting some goals together for 2012.  These are things I'd like to accomplish in 2012, not resolutions.

First, the non-health related goals.

1. Finish our Disney scrapbook for our 2008 trip!  I have the pictures organized, I have all the supplies, I just need to take time to put it together.

2. Crochet an aghan.  I used to be an avid crocheter and then once everyone and their dog had a blanket from me, I kind of gave it up.  But I actually really love crocheting and would like to get back into it.  It's a great thing to do in front of the TV, that's for sure.  I already have yarn I bought a couple years ago, I just need to pick a pattern and get busy!

3. Sell stuff on eBay that is just sitting around.  This is already underway.  In the last two weeks I've made $442.16 by selling stuff on eBay.  Everything from DVDs to a Coach purse.  I have just a few more active listings and a few more things to list and then I'll be good for another couple years.  It's fun but I get kind of burnt out on it.

4. Buy an iPad.  This goes along with #3 and is what I plan to do with all the money I've made.  I still have some Christmas money, too.  I'm super excited!  I do plan to wait until after the next release/upgrade to purchase.  Sometimes I wish new electronics didn't come out so quickly!

5. We have two bathrooms that need paint!!  I would also like new towels and decor for each.  The third bathroom needs new tile, grout or both.  I want to ge these projects done!

6. Consistently save money.  This is a joint effort by both my husband and myself.  We are finally getting back on our feet a little bit and it feels good.  The next step is to put money back into savings and not accrue any additional debt!  This includes saving separately for Christmas which is a huge expense for us because we love it so much!  I want to start pre-planning for it instead of recovering after the fact.  Save. Save.  Save.  Of all my non-health goals, this is my biggest one!

Now for the ones we're really here about: the health goals!

1. Reach my goal weight.  This is the big one and seems so tough right now!

2. Once I get to my goal weight, I want to submit my story to Weight Watchers.  I have always wanted to be a featured success story.  I know I have gone back and forth about my continued relationship with WW, but I am going to stick with them, either by going to meetings or simply as an online member.  I don't have control whether they pick my story, but I do have control over reaching my goal weight and submitting my story.

3. Consistently cross train.  Ultimately, I want to be a runner, but I don't want to just run.  Cross training to me means any other intentional exercise that isn't running.  It may mean bike riding, elliptical, DVDs or simply walking on the treadmill. This activity isn't replacing running, however, it's in addition to running.

4. Run 600 miles this year. I was under 600 both last year and 2010.  2011 was actually lowest given my crash and burn during the last two months.  I have also had a slow start this January, but I can always make up the mileage.   I'm resolved to get better!  A monthly average of 50 miles should be doable, however, even while adding other activity.   

5. Run a sub 2:30 half marathon.  Yes, I plan to do another half this year, the same See Jane Run event as last year.  I also plan to go out with a goal of 2:30 again.  I hope this is my year.

Well, I'm a little late to the 2012 goal party, but here's to all of us reaching our goals!

What's your top goal this year, non-health related?

Terribly Sad

So many of us are saddened to hear of the missing Montana teacher Sherry Arnold who is now presumed dead.  Such a tragedy!  Those of us who are solo morning runners are no doubt freaked out.

When I was in my early twenties, I used to run alone outside in the mornings, and I never thought about safety even a little bit.  Course that running stint didn't last long so it wasn't a big deal.  As I'm older now and have a child to think about, I admit to being a little bit more cautious when it comes to running alone in the mornings.  I usually always run in the neighborhood so that even if I'm alone, I'm not out in a completely uninhabited area. But I admit that I can probably exercise more safety precautions.  (Lately I've been really safe in the mornings...all snug and warm in my bed!!) 

This tragedy is a reminder for all of us.  Running alone in the morning or late at night is not the safest thing in the world so please be careful.

PS. I need a running partner!!

Friday, January 13, 2012


Something is amazing to me.  Right now I feel like crap.  Isn't that amazing?  Okay, that's not the amazing part.  The amazing part, and my amazing, I mean devastatingly terrible, is that when I reached this same weight on my way down, I felt fantastic.  Now that I've reached this weight on my way up, I feel craptastic!  It's an amazing perspective, although, I could do without having experienced it.  :(

Today I ran on the treadmill.  I planned two miles and I finished two miles.  The speed was okay and I felt okay, but my body is definitely not where it was.  My lungs have definitely lost some of their stamina, but my legs felt pretty good.  I plan to run another two tomorrow.  Here's hoping that happens!!  I am in control.

I was not, however, in control last night.  Well, it actually started in the late afternoon.  Long about 4:00 it became apparent that I would be working late into the evening and since I didn't prepare for that I had no extra food with me.  I was already starving.  I made it all of about 15 minutes after the realizing before I was digging into the bagels in the office kitchen.  I'm not going to even tell you all that I ate between about 4:30 and 11:30 last night (I finally left the office at 9:45).  The last thing I ate was part of a bowl of Honey Bunches of Oats with Almonds.  I poured the bowl, added the milk and then beached myself upon the couch.  I was going to take some time to find a picture of myself for my son's school project so I started perusing the options, and then I found this one:
That there is the 75 pound coat (my other cat, not Tucker; she's not really allowed on the bathroom counter) and me with skinny thighs!  OMG, seeing the picture and remembering how I felt when I took it had me putting the bowl of cereal down quickly.  I ended up dumping about 90% of down the disposal.

I wonder if putting that picture everywhere I go would keep me from picking up the cereal in the first place?  Thinking about it is certainly helping me today.  The truth is in the run.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

2 Years Later and is it a Coincidence?

So after my post last night, I was really telling myself to believe in myself.  And then this morning when I headed over to the WW website, I found this.

Do you think it's a coincidence?

As I said yesterday, today is my two year anniversary of starting this journey.  Unfortunately, I have gained some weight so I'm not as light as I was a year ago, but I'm still 60 pounds lighter than I was two years ago.  I want 2012 to be my year.  2012!  I love even number years so this year is already my friend!
I became a lifetime member of Weight Watchers in the Fall of 1999 with a goal weight of 130.  I would like to officially change my goal weight to 145 once I reach it and then weight in monthly at  Weight Watchers as a lifetime member.  I also heard that lifetime members get free e-tools.  Those things are good incentives to keep going and not give up.  Keeping up with that monthly check-in will also help me maintain when I get to that point.

That said, I'm not sure if it's best to continue with Weight Watchers online or actually become a meetings member.  I have said several times that the meetings aren't really for me, but it seems like they have a new open door format where you can go, weigh in, talk with the leaders, get materials and not sit through a meeting.  There is a new center on my way home that has open hours each day for drop ins.  I like this idea.  I like it a lot, in fact.  It would be a nice way to find a leader that I connect with and then maybe meetings would be good for me.  For now, I am an online member but I will keep you posted on what I decide.  Online is more in my budget right now so I'd kinda like to stay with that for awhile, but I also want to stay motivated so if I need to change it up, I will.

Today is a good day.  I did not get up to exercise, but I am eating ON PLAN and I'm drinking my water faithfully.  Quick note, I'm not sure if I've mentioned it, but I am a water bottle addict.  I have no less than 5 purple water bottles and 3 pink ones.  Here's my latest acquisition:
My husband says this bottle is exactly like one I have.  Well, no it isn't.  The one I have has a black lid while this one has white.  And this one is my favorite right now! So there!

And just because I made that proclamation so many moons ago about this blog needing more pictures, here's your daily cuteness.

That is my kitty, Tucker, who nearly died over New Year's weekend.  He's doing so much better!!  I am so thankful.  He's wearing his "party collar" until he gets his stitches out tomorrow.  Last night he was clearly helping me work.  He also loves purple and chooses that color for his pens.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Note to Self: Believe

Dear Lori,

You can do it.  You will do it.  Do not give up.  You cannot give up.  You cannot go back to that place.  Nothing tastes as good as a run feels.  A long, slow run is exhilarating.  A long, slow snack...not so much. Tomorrow it will be two years since you started this journey, but anniversaries don't matter.  Stop thinking you'll "start" that day.  Just do it.  Keep Start moving forward.  Anyday and everyday. You can and will achieve your goals.  First, believe.  Second, achieve.  As Ali Vincent says, "Believe it.  Be it." You've lost faith in yourself, but you can get it back.  Get on the treadmill, eat less, and believe.  Before you know it, you'll be there.  And that will be great because there are some nice clothes in your closet that miss you.


What do you do with retired running gear?

First of all, thanks for continuing to read this blog and welcoming me back! 

So on to today's topic...

I have a couple of race belts which I no longer use (not because I'm not running currently) but because I found something that works better for me.  So now I have these perfectly good race belts sitting around.  In my organized world, anything sitting around without a use is called clutter.  I HATE clutter.  Both of the belts are Amphipod and one his a hydration belt.  I talked about both of the belts here.  Both have been washed so they're clean, the bottles have been and can be sanitized.  So the question remains: what do I do with these things.  Surely someone else could benefit from them, right?  Would it be weird to offer them up on this blog, or should I just give them to charity?  I would love it if someone could get use out of them because they are great belts.  Please tell me, would anyone want these belts, or is it weird to offer up a used item?  What say you?

What do you do with retired running gear that is in perfectly good, working condition?

Monday, January 9, 2012

MY Blog is for ME

So my first week of *trying* to watch it while getting back on the treadmill yielded one run and a gain of .6 pounds.  Go me!  Seriously, how lame am I?  And I mean that in the sweetest possible way, I mean, I love myself, I don't loathe myself.  At least I'm trying not to.  It's very hard.  Dangit.

I read a great post today by Tricia and Endurance isn't only Physical (here).  She put into words so much of what I've been feeling or was feeling during the latter part of last year regarding this blog. I found myself wanting a successful blog, a blog people turned to as a resource, a blog businesses relied upon for product reviews.  I kept measuring myself up to this standard (that I created in my own pinhead) and when I wasn't meeting it the mark, I felt like a failure.  And I kind of let that feeling drive me away from this blog.  And I've really missed this blog.

I'm a journaler (not a word according to blogger).  I have kept a journal ever since I was in junior high (1988).  I love to write.  I'm not necessarily a good writer, but I love to put my thoughts on a page.  My most favorite medium for journaling (another nonword) is pen and paper which takes a lot longer and makes my hand hurt.  It also doesn't come with spell check.  But it doesn't matter because my journal is for me and me alone and it doesn't matter if I write THERE instead of THEIR or something like that.  Of course, while I say it's for me, I do write it always with the sense that someone will read it someday.  Someday, after I'm gone, either my husband (probably not) or my son (maybe) or my son's wife (nosey bitch) will probably read it and for that reason I always keep things fairly calm.  I never say too much about one person or some persons for fear that information could get out to the wrong people someday.  Because the truth of it is that I could die tomorrow and my journals would still be here for any inquiring mind.  So I keep it real, but I also keep it nice, so to speak, always writing with the idea that someone will read it someday.

That same thing holds true for this blog except I seem to not be as comfortable writing for some reason.  I started the blog fairly anonymously and never told anyone about it except my husband.  After a few months I told my best friend and then another friend.  But that is all.  Well, then last fall a couple people that I actually know in real life became followers of this blog, and I found that it kind of shut me up, but also made me want the successful blog even more.  Like, I could be cool with my blog and what not.  Well, turns out, that's not for me.  This blog is for me and I guess in order to keep it going and to keep doing what I want to do, I have to not care as much who is reading and what they are thinking.  I need to be able to be completely honest with myself on this journey.  Because it's my journey.  Yes, if you get something out of it, or if I can help you or inspire you, I will love that so much. But if you hate me, think I'm a dork, a Negative Nelly or Debbie Downer, well, that's too bad.  Because this is me.  All of me.  My flaws but also my gifts and talents and attributes. 

That being said, over the weekend I lost a follower (I have no idea whom, it's not like I keep an list of names or anything).  Why should losing a nameless follower bugs me when I know that the number of followers means nothing.  But still, I guess I have the overwhelming desire to be liked.  Please like me.  Like my blog.

Okay, anyway, this blog is mine and I need to get back to it.  And what I need it for right (just typed 'write' instead of 'right'--wouldn't have mattered in the journal) now is to help me get back on track.  I am starting to feel a bit like I have failed, or I have relapsed, or something like it.  I have said before that I feel like I am a food addict.  I am addicted to food, much like others become addicted to cigarettes or alcohol.  I honestly feel like I've relapsed or fallen off the wagon.  And I need to get back on.  I cannot go back to obesity; I cannot go back to the couch.  I will get back to where I was AND beyond.  In the meantime, I will use this blog to ramble on and on about what it's going to take to get there.  And while I hope you're along for the ride, I can't worry about making YOU happy along the way.

Why do you blog?  Are you a guarded blogger, or a tell all blogger?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Welcome 2012

So, I'm back!  The past couple of months have flown by for me.  Let me catch you up.  Since I last left you I have been running very little and gaining very much weight.  And that is very, very scary!

I am currently 20 pounds heavier than my lowest recorded weight!  Yes, you read that right!  Crap!

Unfortunately, I am one of those people who is effected a lot by the winter blues and unfortunately this year it started for me much earlier. I'm trying to get out of the funk, but for some reason I'm still stuck.  I tell myself to just get on the treadmill or even go out for a walk, but I can't bring myself to do it.  And the more I don't run, the more pounds creep on, and the worse I feel.  The worse I feel, the worse I eat, the more tired I am, the less I want to run.  It's a viscious cycle, of course.

It's not just the weather, it's a few things at home too.  I'm really happy that my husband is working, but I have not found the balance yet.  It's been hard for me to not have him at home to take care of our child, it's hard for me to have my child attend the after school program.  I also have to find time to go shopping and do laundry and anything else that needs doing.  It's not that my husband isn't helping out now, he is, but more things are falling on me to take care of too.  This transition has just been a lot harder than I was expecting.  There's also a little bit of the worry that it will all fall apart too, that he'll get laid off or lose his job for whatever reason and then we'll be back to the worry and turmoil of not having enough money to live.  I know, I know, I'm not supposed to think like that, life is meant to be lived, not worried about (PFG Jen said that the other day and I loved it), but as a chronic worrier, it's a hard thing.  It just is.  Our schedule is also different too.  He has to be to work from 8 to 5 whereas I have more flexibility.  Getting our child to and from school falls on me now and than changes my schedule quite a bit.  My husband is also more tired now and wants to go to bed way early, or is falling asleep on the couch.  I'm just not used to this.  I'm sure as time goes by I'll adapt, but for now, it's hard.

I'm also worried about my cat and the fact that he is now worth over $2,000, but refuses to eat.  It was a combination of vet bills ending with a surgery over the weekend to remove a Nerf dart tip from his small intestine (yes, you can laugh).  Basically he nearly died, and while right now I'm thinking maybe I should have let him go, I know that I have to try my hardest to get him to eat so that doesn't happen.  I chose to spend the money to save him and now I have to see that he remembers how to eat in order to stay alive.  But it's making me stressed.  You can bet I am thankful he's alive, and you can be assured I'm also glad it's just my cat and not my son who is sick, but I still worry.  Worry about having spent all this money, worry about having had to skimp on other things (like birthday presents for my husband) in order to keep him alive.  Was it the right thing?  I guess I don't even need to ask why since what's done is done.  But as I was force feeding him pureed chicken earlier this even, I was really questioning myself.  And I'm praying very hard for him.

Do I have the answer?  No!  If you'd have told me six months ago this is where I'd be today, I'd have said you were crazy and laughed.  But, here I be.

I did get on the treadmill yesterday (2 miles) and I did have a very good day of eating so I call that a win.  I tracked all my points too.  Today was my husband's birthday and we went out to dinner where I endulged in the macaroni and cheese at Red Robin.  It was tasty!  But that, combined with the pita chips I ate before we left, really dug into my weekly points allowance.  Not a great day for the 2nd day on plan.

I'm not trying to have resolutions because they don't work, I'm just trying to get back on track.  Long about Thanksgiving I basically decided to focus on geting my mind healthy to get through the holidays.  After the new year, I would try to focus more on my physical health as well as the mental aspect.  Of course it's all related.  The worse I feel physically, the worse I feel mentally, and I don't work out and I eat poorly.  And then I feel worse.  And the self loathing begins and that never leads to good things...and wait, didn't I already go over this above?

Well, anyway, I don't have the answers and I don't think I'm in a good place to make life changes at this time, but you know what?  When will I be?  The more time that's passed, the worse I feel, so why not today?  Each day is a new day.  I had a great day yesterday and a not so great day today, but who says I can't have an even better day tomorrow?  Walk the walk and maybe soon I'll talk the talk?  I don't know, let's leave the cliches to the experts.

I have no resolutions, but I do have goals.  My goal for 2012 is to make it to my goal weight, run at least one "race" each month from March to October, and complete another half marathon with a PR.  Considering my 2 mile run yesterday was quite difficult, I know that I have to kick it up a notch in order to be ready to run 5 miles in mid-March.

So I have a three month plan right now which culminates with a 5 mile event right around St. Paddy's day, and then a hope that I've lost a good bit of weight, at least back to where I was before, by the end of March.  I'm taking it a week at a time.  My goal for this week is to track all my points and run three times, on Monday (2 miles), Wednesday (2 miles), and Friday (2.5 miles).  That is all.  That should be no thang! 

My 2012 race schedule looks like this:

March: St. Paddy's Five 3/11/12 (5 miles)
April: Spring Dash  4/22/12 (5 miles)
May: Bloomsday 5/6/12 (12K)
May: CDA 5K 5/27/12
June: ??? (might not complete one because of two in May and July, though)
July: See Jane Run Half Marathon 7/15/12
July: Spokane Indians 8K Pennant Run 7/?/12
August: Dwight Dash 10K 8/25/12
September: Iron Girl 10K Seattle 9/9/12
October: Spokane 10K 10/?/12

What I'd really like to find is a race buddy.  We don't have to train together, although that would be nice, but we could just go to the race together, line up together, and meet up after.  Otherwise, I'm looking at doing most of these events all by myself.  And while that's okay, it's not ideal.  But so far, it's looking like I'll be a solo racer.

And now my cat just peed in the tub.  Great, something else to worry about, that he'll forget how to use a litter box!

Here's hoping for a better tomorrow.

Do you suffer from SAD?  How do you get out of a slump?