Friday, January 16, 2015

And the Beat Goes On

Howdy folks!! 

I hope that you're having a great week so far!

I'm having an interesting one, to say the least!! 

I'm still experimenting with the pressure cooker that I got for Christmas. So far, the verdict is that it's AWESOME!!  Last Saturday, after running 6 miles then shopping/running errands all day, I came home tired and worn out. I had to work on Sunday so I just wanted to sit down and relax, but something had to be fixed for supper. So, I threw some stew meat in the cooker on the brown setting. While it browned, I prepared onions, carrots, potatoes and celery. After the meat was brown, I added beef broth, onion, garlic, and spices. I cooked it for 15 minutes, then I added the veggies and some frozen peas and cooked for 15 more minutes. It was so easy and delicious!!  We had a hot, hearty meal in an hour and I still had time to rest before work on Sunday! I found the recipe for the stew here. To keep it GF, I used cornstarch instead of flour. And I like tomatoes in my stew so next time, I will use tomato juice or canned tomatoes.


So, in other news......for about 2 weeks now, I've been having heart palpitations off and on. I'm having what are called PVC's. A premature ventricular contraction (PVC) is a too-early heartbeat that originates in the ventricles and disrupts the heart’s normal rhythm. The pattern is a normal beat, an extra beat (the PVC), a slight pause, then a stronger-than-normal beat. The heart fills with more blood during the pause following the PVC, giving  the next beat extra force. This pattern may occur randomly or at definite intervals. Almost everyone has PVCs at some time, from childhood through adulthood. Healthy people of any age can experience PVCs. In most cases of occasional PVCs the underlying cause cannot be identified. PVCs that occur frequently or for longer periods of time are more likely to be related to heart disease, an injury to the heart or other, non-cardiac conditions such as a chemical imbalance in the body.  Certain medications, alcohol, illegal drugs and high levels of adrenaline due to stress, exercise or caffeine also can cause PVCs. They were occurring randomly and didn't seem to correlate with my exercise or caffeine intake. They've been occurring mostly in the morning while I'm getting ready for work. It's been a daily occurrence but they usually don't last very long. Well this week on both Sunday and Tuesday mornings, the episodes were sustained for 1-2 hours. On Tuesday, when I arrived at work, my co-workers insisted that I go to the ER to get it checked out. That was an ordeal!!


I got in and was seen quickly. An EKG was done, an IV was placed, and labs were drawn, then I waited! I got the results of my labs/EKG about 2 hours later. All was normal but they wanted to keep me for observation. There was no way I was staying in the hospital overnight, so I arranged an outpatient follow up with a cardiologist and insisted that they discharge me. I followed up with the cardiologist yesterday. He drew some additional lab and put me on a heart monitor that I will wear for the next 30 days. I'm also having an exercise stress test in 2 weeks. So, hopefully this will be an issue that can easily be fixed with a little medication and hopefully not life altering . I did my back and biceps workout last night without difficulty except the monitor started squealing like mad during the warm up "light jog" Tonight, I'm coaching the Pathways group. It should be interesting with this thing in place. I suspect that it will mistake the increased pulse rate for an arrhythmia and squeal the whole time. We shall see!



The ER was an interesting experience. The doctors saw fit to keep reminding me that "you're not getting any younger" and one portly physician actually told me "unless you're Whole Foods #1 customer and I highly doubt it, then you should be taking supplements" I wanted to say "Well listen here mister! How rude!!  You obviously don't know who you're talking to and don't have the right to make such judgements or statements. And it looks like you could benefit from shopping at Whole Foods a little bit, then maybe you wouldn't need those supplements!!" And its funny how all my co-workers/friends have suddenly become doctors. They've all diagnosed me with anxiety, panic attacks, stress and told me I exercise too much! UGH!!  We'll see what the professional that I entrusted my heart to has to say in a few weeks!!  I suspect they'll all be wrong and this is just some anomaly. At least that's what I'm hoping for! I'll keep you all posted!

Until next time--get up, get out, and get moving! Make today ridiculously amazing!!

Your friend,

Theresa

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Workout Wednesday!!

It's Wednesday!!!  Woot, Woot!!

If you've followed me for a while, you know what that means. If you're new here, I love Wednesday because it means we're halfway through the work week. And it also means Workout Wednesday!!

The New Year is in full swing and so many folks have resolved to lose weight, get in shape, work out more, etc. For the first few weeks, you'll see these people at the gym and it seems like they are on track. But then something happens. They get sick, they get busy.....whatever. It seems that the majority get side tracked and time seems to be the biggest thief of their success. We all have the same 24 hours in a day. I understand that we have jobs, kids, lives, etc.  I know too well how easy it is to fall into the "I don't have time" trap. But I've tried to adopt a new attitude about exercise and working out lately.

 For me, working out is not a necessity. I do it because I want to, NOT because I HAVE to. Yes, I'm tired at the end of my work day. All I want to do is come home and put on my pajamas. But I choose to workout first. Why? The time is going to pass anyway whether I'm slinging iron or in my chair with my feet up. Because it's my ME time. Its a positive little thing that I do for myself at the end of the day. Its a great way to burn off the frustrations of the day. Its a small investment in myself. When you think about it, its really no different that getting a pedicure or a massage. That's an investment in one's self. So, why not start thinking of your workout in the same way and see if it makes any difference in getting your workout in.


Here is one of my very favorite total body circuits for you. This is my go-to workout when I'm pressed for time. It is short and sweet but I always feel like I accomplished something when I'm finished. You can modify to add more rounds or you can add additional exercises. I've added triceps extensions and flies before.

 
Now, you have no excuse!! 
 
Until next time--get up, get out, and get moving!!  Make time for yourself today! You'll be glad that you did!!
 
 
 



Your friend,

Theresa





Tuesday, January 6, 2015

2015 Goals~~Secrets to Success.

Good morning folks!!

It was a mad dash to the finish,  but we made it through the holidays! I hope yours were fabulous, that you got everything you wished for and more,  and that you escaped the usually holiday weight gain.  I tried to stick to my clean eating as much as possible and was pleasantly surprised when I got on the scale the other day.   

Here we are at the beginning of the new year. For many of us,  that means New Year Resolutions. It is estimated that 40% of Americans make resolutions but only 8% will keep them.  So,  why not call them goals and make them something you can achieve?  

Now the trick is how to successfully achieve those goals and deal with inevitable set backs. I believe that it was Zig Ziglar who said " be firm about your principle but flexible about your methods"

 
 The first step to successful goal setting is to write it down.

The key is to set "SMART" goals:

Specific--A goal needs to be as specific as possible so you can work toward it and achieve it.
If your goal is too vague, it will be nearly impossible to achieve. For example, "drink more water" is too vague. Drink 60 ounces of water is much more specific and easier to track/measure (see #2)

Measurable--keep track of your goal. If your goal is to lose weight, keep a weekly log of your weight and a daily log of your calories. If your goal is to run a 5k, etc then keep track of your miles. Seeing the progress will help keep you motivated!

Accountable--sharing your goal with a friend or family member will help keep you on track. There are many online tools and apps that help with accountability, My Fitness Pal and Dailymile for example help you keep track of calories/miles and connect with others for accountability.

Realistic--Make sure your goal is realistic for you. You don't want to make it too difficult because and get discouraged. You need to be able to see yourself reaching the goal. It needs to be challenging without being overwhelming. This is where you might need to be flexible. For instance, last year I set a goal of running a marathon but for various reasons this was not a realistic goal for me. I had to re-evaluate and reframe my goals. You might experience what seems like a setback. The important thing is to keep going. There is often more than one way around it!

Timeframe--If your goal doesn't have a time limit, you will have trouble starting and staying motivated until the end. When you start seeing results, it will ultimately keep you motivated. Hang in there, if it takes you a little longer, keep going. Don't stop otherwise you'll never get there!!
It's gonna be a busy but great year!! This is the year that we're going to achieve those goals, I just know it!!

Until next time--get up, get out and get moving! Make today ridiculously amazing!!

Your friend,

Theresa

What are your goals for 2015?

 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Year in Review

Howdy, howdy y'all!!

I hope that you all had a good Christmas!!  We did!

The past 3 weeks have been whirlwind, crazy hectic around here hence the lack of posts!!

The last time I checked in, we were getting ready to go to St Louis for the Hot Chocolate Run. I had fully intended to recap that race, then life happened and kept on coming at me like a freight train!!

Here's a brief recap of the race. We got there late Friday night. Hubs woke up early Saturday morning sick with what I thought was a cold. We picked up our packets and got him some cold medicine. We stayed in at the hotel that night. We got up Sunday morning and hubs was still not feeling well, but he went ahead and did the 5k. The weather was so much better than last year and I was appreciating it until about mile 7 when I decided that I was overdressed. I was way too hot!! My goal time was 1:45 but I didn't make it. I finished at 1:48. I'm ok with that. I had fun and that's what matters! Not every race has to be a PR!!  Hubs still wasn't feeling well. He was coughing and sneezing all over the place. I drove most of the way home.

He finally went to the doctor and discovered that he had pneumonia!!  That significantly changed things for me!!  I've been filling in in an area of my department that I'm not 100% oriented to. My co-worker that usually does this job suffered a grade 3 sprain to her mid foot earlier this month. She isn't able to bear any weight and employee health won't let her return to work until she can. So, I've been filling in for her. Needless to say, I got a "trial by fire" type orientation to the job. It is quite hectic and stressful. I go in early most days and don't get off until late. That made Christmas shopping quite interesting!!  I'm glad most stores were open late during the holidays!!  I finally got it all done about 2 days before Christmas. I didn't have any gifts wrapped until Christmas Eve! But we made it and everyone had a jolly time!!  We're going to Iowa later this week for 2nd Christmas with the northern relatives!!

2014 was quite a year. It didn't turn out quite the way I had planned. Last year at this time, I was preparing for my first full marathon. But I was struggling with a physical injury, which later sidelined me and also with the fact that mentally, I wasn't ready for a full marathon. I don't think I ever will be!

Here's my 2014 race bling:

not nearly as much as past years, but it was still a good year.

I had some setbacks both personally and professionally that forced me to adapt and overcome. I sustained an injury to my Achilles tendon, probably due to overtraining. I struggled with that for about 3 months until I finally had to stop running. I completed the Little Rock half marathon in brutal conditions in early March and didn't run another step until April. I was just making a come back when my mother in law fell and broke her hip in May. She was hospitalized until June when she subsequently passed away. This was very difficult for my husband as she did everything for my father in law. Now, we have to do that.

In August, I was reassigned at my job. I was devastated by this change initially, but it has ultimately been a huge blessing!

I was running sporadically over the summer but not really consistently until August when I began to coach Pathways again. And that's when all became right with my world again. I love working with the runners to achieve their goals. That is very rewarding for me!!  I worked with them from August until November. Together we trained for and completed the Fleet Feet Quarter Marathon, the Tulsa Run 15k, and the Williams Route 66 half marathon. Now, we're in our first ever winter session of Pathways and we're training for the Fleet Feet Sweetheart run 10k. I've got another fun group and am enjoying this session so far!

During my time off from running, I discovered that I actually enjoy weight training. And I plan to continue that into 2015. I was doing the Team Beachbody Body Beast program but the past few weeks, I've gotten off track with that. He wasn't able to train due to his illness and I wasn't home until 9pm some nights. I took a little time off but we're back at it this week. Monday we did a Jamie Eason upper body workout and last night we did the 21 Day Fix Dirty 30.

I've avoided gaining any weight this holiday season, so far by being consistent with my clean eating. I've had a few small treats but I've kept it about 90% clean. The scale reflects it too!!  For Christmas, my mom gave me a pressure cooker. I haven't tried it yet but I'm eager to see how this will help with my weekly meal prep.

So, my 2015 goals are:

1. Continue to eat clean, NO JUNK!!
2. Restart the Body Beast program Monday, January 5
3. Continue running with Pathways, training for the Little Rock half marathon and the Go Girl half marathon, both in March.
4. Try to get back to blogging more consistently
5. Declutter my house and downsize!!  Less is more!!

So, that's all I've got for now. I hope that your 2014 was fabulous and your 2015 is even better!!

Until next time--get up, get out, and get moving!!  Whatever you do today, be awesome at it!!

Your friend,

Theresa

Do you have any New Year's resolutions/goals??

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Tuesday Thoughts

Good morning folks!

Just checking in quickly to say happy Tuesday. Am I the only one who thinks that Tuesday is the worst day of the week? You've got Monday in all it's manicness and Wednesday with it's humpiness, Thursday is like Friday-eve, and then of course it's TGIF. But Tuesday really has no identity of it's own. Maybe I just have too much time on my hands to think about obscure things!

I'm excited because the inaugural winter season of Pathways starts tonight. In the past, we have taken the winter off. We still run together, but it's loosely structured and not organized. I find myself struggling with motivation or lack there of because it's dark and/or cold. Well this year, Fleet Feet listened to it's participants and initiated a winter season. I'm glad. It will be good to run with an organized group during what I think is the toughest running time of the year. I'm moving up a pace group this session. I'll be coaching the 11:30 group with my friend, Dave. I'm looking forward to this session. I plan to make it as fun as possible to help keep them motivated. I've got a fun idea, team building idea that I can't wait to implement!



I believe that my job as a coach is to help keep them motivated and find their confidence. I often say that I'm not a perfect pacer, but I'm their biggest cheerleader. One way to help them be successful is to have a fun, cohesive group. Let's face it, running alone is ok sometimes; but running with a group is the best! You're sharing a common interest with like minded people and often times, you make life long friends. I'm really looking forward to this adventure!!

In other news, I'm still eating clean and sticking to the 21 Day Fix meal plan. So far, so good!!  I haven't had any candy in over a week, with the exception of peppermints. I have allowed myself  to have coffee with 1 tsp of sugar and 1.5 TBSP of coffee creamer. This doesn't seem to be too much as MFP allows for 40g of sugar a day. This is way under that!!  My stomach is much less bloated, so that's the goal that I was hoping to achieve!!  I'll keep plugging along with it. I know there will be tempations and struggles but hopefully, I've broken the sugar addiction!!

This weekend, we're travelling to St. Louis, Missouri for the Hot Chocolate run. My friends and I ran it last year. It was so cold, but so much fun that we're going back!!  Hubs had just had knee surgery so he couldn't participate but this year he is walking the 5k. I hope this gives him the motivation that he needs to run/walk again. He has some pain in that knee post meniscus repair, probably arthritis. But he is afraid that he will reinjure himself. I keep telling him to stick to shorter distances and walking but I haven't been able to convince him. I just don't think that he is that committed. But, fear can do strange things!

I'm still slacking on my weight training. I was doing so well with consistency and not missing workouts until last week when I did the 3 Day Refresh. I had no energy whatsoever and physically felt ill, so I didn't workout. I have been so busy with day to day stuff and holiday preparation that I haven't got back to it. I'm hoping to change that tonight. When I get home from running, I'll immediately workout, then I can put on my pajamas!!  Here's what I'm hoping the rest of my week will look like, workout-wise:

Tuesday: Pathways run, Body Beast Build chest and triceps
Wednesday: Body Beast Back and biceps
Thursday: Pathways run (2.5 or 3) Body Beast Lucky 7
Friday: Body Beast Shoulders
Saturday: rest
Sunday: Hot Chocolate 15k

So, now that you're updated, you can carry on with your regularly scheduled programming!!

Until next time: get up, get out and get moving!!  Whatever you do today, be awesome at it!!

Your friend,

Theresa

How do you stay motivated to run in the winter??
Do you run with a group or prefer to run alone??

Thursday, December 4, 2014

I Survived!

Hello, hello folks!!

We're almost through this week and that makes me a happy, happy girl!! It's been a rough one!!
We've been very busy at work and I haven't been 100% this week. I'm looking forward to my days off!

I survived the 3 Day Refresh!!  And I hated every miserable moment of it!!  I had heard good things about it and I was really hoping to like it, but not so much. Let me back up and explain why I decided to try it in the first place. Lately, I've been eating sweets and treats like they are going out of style. My husband and I can sit down and devour a medium sized bag of peanut M&M's in 2 nights. That's absurd! I have a weakness for candy, any and all kinds of candy. I try to justify it by eating the mini sizes or snack sizes, but I can't just stop at 1 or 2. Plus, I do a lot of mindless snacking in the evenings after work. I'll come home almost every night and "graze" on whatever I can find. Most often, it's tortilla chips. I knew if I wanted to make real progress with my weight lifting program that I would need to quit eating all the junk. Now, in the past, I've been able to go cold turkey on sweets, treats, and sugars but I've always gone back to them. And this time, I was having a little trouble with will power. So I decided to try the 3 Day Refresh to get me back on track.

Let me preface my review by saying that I am a fan of Team Beachbody. I've used several of their products in the past, Insanity, 21 Day Fix, and Body Beast, and have been pleased with those. I had heard good things about the Refresh, so I thought that I would give it a go. Now, I'm also a Beachbody coach but I don't make that readily known. Coaches make a commission off the products that people by from their websites, so I understand supporting the product that they are selling. But, I'm in it for the discount on products more than anything else. I feel that I need to be honest about my experience with the product, even if it is less than ideal.

I don't really believe that these weight loss gimmicks work. I actually think that they can set one up for failure. I didn't really expect miracles but I drank the Kool-aid and thought I would see what all the hype was about. I ordered it and planned to start it the Sunday after Thanksgiving. It was only 3 days and I can do anything for 3 days, right?  It arrived and I meal planned/grocery shopped. It includes a fiber drink (like Metamucil) and high protein shakes. You can get it with Shakeology but I chose not to as I prefer another vegan protein shake. You eat an abundance of vegetables with some fruit and healthy fats to "keep you full and satisfied". The protein sources are vegetable proteins. The theory behind it is that vegetables are easier for your body to process. I followed the plan 99% There were a couple of variables that I was not willing to budge on. I drink and Advocare Spark daily. If I had to give up coffee, I knew I would need that Spark and its allowed on the Advocare cleanse, so I didn't cut that out. And, I mix my protein shake w/ unsweetened almond milk. I didn't change that either. So here's how it went:

Day 1:

I started with 8oz of Advocare Spark when I woke up. Breakfast was my protein shake w/ almond milk and 1/2 apple. Mid morning, I had hot tea then a little while later, the fiber sweep. It was kindy clumpy but I chugged it down. Lunch was the other 1/2 apple, 1.5 tsps. almond butter, and the vanilla refresh shake from the Refresh mixed with water. Mid afternoon, I had 1 red bell pepper with 2 tbsp. of hummus. Dinner was a spinach salad with peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers, sunflower seeds and homemade vinegar/oil dressing and another vanilla refresh shake. Day 1 was actually not too bad. I did go to bed early but that's another story.

Day 2: Identical to Day 1 except I was starting to feel weak and tired, fuzzy headed and HANGRY!! The cravings, OMG, the cravings!!  Please make them stop!!!

Day 3: Same as Day 1 but HANGRY!!!  I was so weak and tired. I had such a bad headache that I was very unproductive at work. I was so glad that it was almost over!!

The PROS: I increased my water and vegetable intake. I try to get enough veggies but I usually only get 2-3 servings a day. I did not eat any candy!! My stomach is much less bloated! So, in that regard, it was successful.

The CONS: Not enough to eat. You only consume about 900-1000 calories. This is simply not enough. I was so hungry. I had zero energy. I didn't work out for 3 days while on this plan. I basically felt horrible days 2 & 3. I didn't cheat but I really wanted to. The vanilla refresh shakes were simply terrible!!

The end result: I didn't really lose any weight (maybe 3 or 4 pounds) or inches off my waist like I had seen others claim. But, my goal wasn't to lose weight and I really don't have that much to lose, so I wasn't expecting much. As I said, I did succeed at not eating candy or junk, so that was a success. And I was successful at increasing my water and veggie intake, so that's a plus. Did I accomplish what I hoped to? My goal was to clean up my diet, so yes I did. But I wouldn't go this route again. Its too drastic and too much deprivation. I wanted to binge so badly!!  Would I ever do it again? Absolutely not!! If I need to "reset" my nutrition in the future, I will do it myself in what I believe is a healthy manner.
 

Now, I plan to follow a less restrictive, clean eating plan. I'm going to follow the 21 Day Fix plan without treats or sweets. That's going to be hard with Christmas coming but I think that I can do it now that I've gotten a jumpstart.

Until next time--get up, get out, and get moving! Make today ridiculously amazing!!

Your friend,

Theresa

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

December Goals

Good morning folks!

I hope that you all had a pleasant Thanksgiving holiday weekend. Ours was, for the most part.

Thursday morning, I got up early to get in a few miles before the notorious Thanksgiving calories were consumed. I was planning to do about 3.5 miles but I only got about 3.3 I was almost back to the car when I started having a sharp pain in my lower right calf. I wasn't sure if it was the actual calf muscle or if it was the Achilles injury rearing its ugly head again, so I stopped and walked about a quarter of a mile back to the car. I kinesio taped it when I got home and ice/elevated it later that night and Friday night. It was sore after bearing weight all day but seems to be a little better this morning. At any rate, I think I'll wait a few more days before I try running again. I don't need to be sidelined with a serious injury again.

After that, we went to visit my family. It's always good to see them. I got to be the official baby holder! I spent most of the day holding my sweet baby niece, Hallie. She is my sister's daughter and is the sweetest, happiest baby ever!!  Of course, I might be a little bit partial!!


This was the first year that I've had a completely gluten-free Thanksgiving. I have to say that I wasn't miserable and bloated feeling after the meal!!  It was great!!

And later that evening, we braved the lines at Walmart. I really wanted to be home in my pajamas with my feet up, but they had some good deals that I just couldn't pass up. We got up early Friday morning for more Black Friday shopping and completed the shopping trifecta on Saturday when we purchased our first REAL Christmas tree!!  I was so excited to get it home and set up, then I couldn't find the darn lights!! I went to bed disappointed that night. I found the lights last night but I wasn't feeling well, so it's still sitting there undecorated. Maybe tonight I'll get the lights on it. The good thing is we got a lot of our Christmas shopping done!

I mentioned last week that I had some exciting news. Well, as you know, I've been doing the Body Beast workout. And I'm making progress but not as much as I would like. That means one thing: that my diet isn't clean enough. While I try to eat clean about 80% of the time, my sweet tooth has been out of control lately. And I don't mean just a little bit either! I've cleaned it up before and cut out treats/processed sugars but I'm having a hard time this time. So, I decided that I would try the Team Beachbody 3 Day Refresh. I started it yesterday. At first, I was questioning my sanity. I didn't sleep well at all Saturday night, so I was very tired yesterday morning but I went ahead and started the Refresh. I'll fully recap when I complete it, but I was pleasantly surprised with Day 1. After I finish the 3 day cleanse, I'll try to adhere more to the 21 Day Fix meal plan. This isn't so much about losing weight for me as it is about cleaning up my diet. So, Operation Ditch The Junk Food officially started yesterday and is in full swing!


As far as my fitness goals, I need to get back on track with the Body Beast workouts. I missed my Saturday workout (Bulk Arms) because I was hunting for the Christmas lights. I might have a tendency to hoard Christmas things a little bit. My search for lights turned into a purge of sorts which ultimately led to a meltdown! Then last night, I was just too tired. I had my pajamas on before 7pm and was in bed, asleep shortly after that. So, tonight is supposed to be a rest day but it will be a combo of arms and back to get back on track. Tomorrow night will be Bulk Chest then we'll be back on schedule. Pathways is still on hiatus until December 8 but I will run "tweener" runs with my friends until we start back up. I was planning to run Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday but I think that this week I'll wait until Thursday to give my right leg a full week of rest. Then we'll go from there. I'm running the Hot Chocolate 15k in St Louis on December 14, so I need fresh legs for that. And, I've joined the Fleet Feet Sports Winter Warrior challenge. I chose the 100 miles challenge, to run 100 miles between Thanksgiving and Valentine's Day. I'm planning to train for the Rock N Roll New Orleans half marathon in January and if not that, then the Go Short, Go Long, Go Very Long 25k. And, I'll be working with Pathways during December and January. Their goal race will be the Sweetheart 10k in February. I'll do that double that day, the 5k and 10k back to back. So, those are my fitness goals in a nutshell.

Until next time--get up, get out, and get moving!!  Whatever you do today, make it ridiculously amazing!!

Your friend,

Theresa

What are your current fitness goals?
Have you ever done a cleanse??