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Month

September 2009

Weighing In Mess

I got an email from the WW people saying that my monthly official weigh-in was overdue (it’s taking me a while to understand the rules here) so I thought I’d check out a meeting out here in the Midwest. Found one just a mile from my hotel.

Now this is the deal with Lifetime. You are eligible for free meetings if you are no more than 2 lbs over your Goal Weight. (the weight you were at when achieving LT).  At my last weigh-in, I was almost two pounds UNDER. So today, I was 1.8 lbs over THAT weight, which meant I was .4 lb over my GOAL. (also, the clothes I am wearing are easily .4 heavier than my normal weigh-in outfit) And the weigher tsk-tsked at me and said, “Hmm, 1.8 up. Well, you’re on vacation, right?”

It affected me. WOW. Why did I let it affect me? I sat and steamed through the whole meeting (and btw the leader was TERRIFIC, not the same person as the weigher). It made me think, once again, about how sensitive this whole weigh-in thing is. People who do this can seriously throw people off.  When I do this at my job, I really try to be as positive as possible, as encouraging as I can.

I really liked the meeting, which was about restaurant eating. Speaking of restaurants, my daughter took me to this GREAT place last night. It was so uber-healthy and delicious! You basically go to this huge vegetable bar, load up your bowl, add some protein (if you want) and they stir fry it up and bring it to your table. You have total control of portions, ingredients, etc. It was incredibly yummy.

Anyway, back to the meeting. The leader had everyone fold up their nametags (good way to have people not walking around with tags on all day) and she did a drawing for a prize. The woman next to me said she does this every week. I’ll have to remember this. It was fun – she gave away a journal. I wonder if she gets these things in bulk or whatever, but I thought it was a great idea.

I came back to my hotel for breakfast. They have this free buffet thing with a decent assortment. I headed straight for the hot egg mcmuffin (actually a mcBagel thing). Definitely  not the best choice but I was still all messed up from the stupid weigh in. WHY? And why did it make me make a “bad” choice? I didn’t just have one, but two. (OK, two HALVES so I guess one whole bagel!) NOT a big deal in and of itself, but the fact that I was eating out of pure emotion. Hmmm.

Then after breakfast I was too full to go work out. But I’m not in the mood for hotel gym right now. I’m going to go to that Nia class again. I am hoping it will help calm me down.

Interesting what a crazy cycle it all is. If I had weighed-in at home, I would have felt perfectly HAPPY with my weight, which is just FINE. But that offhand little comment/facial expression whatever, just threw me. It THREW ME ACROSS THE ROOM. It made me eat all emotionally. How stupid is that? Or how…? I don’t know. I’m just feeling all discombobulated right now and I could really use some spacey music (or maybe some geriatric lavender aromatherapy, hm Mizfit?) to calm me down.

Every Day? Yeah, Every Day!

280Today’s post is dedicated to MizFit. She has been inspiring me since Day One and today her guest-blog post felt almost psychic.  Her blog post (written by guest George) is about working out every day.

Not too long ago a friend Tweeted me (Twittered me?) and said “Dude you work out every day? You are hard core!” That made me laugh. I do not think of myself as a hard core person, especially in terms of workouts. But gradually over the past months I have come to expect that unless something (see MizFit’s post on what those somethings might be) comes up that makes it impossible, I will work out every day. It used to be that I would work out “when I felt like it.” Which could range from “never” to once or twice a month.  Then I began working out, by schedule and appointment, about 2 times a week, maybe 3x if I was feeling extra hard core (ha).  THEN I started aiming for 4-5x a week. But then I’d forget, “What is the day I don’t work out again?” and eventually it morphed into, if I am alive and breathing, not injured or ill, then I’m working out.

It helps a LOT that I do different things on different days. Some days I run. Some days I go to a Nia class. Some days I go to my trainer and do weights and stuff. Today I woke up in a hotel so I went to the fitness center (a really, really great one!) and did 40 minutes on the elliptical, a bunch of free weight and ball stuff, and some other stuff. When I read the MizFit post, it made me really happy. I was like YEAH! I feel good now, and ready to do all the other things in my day.

SO, in honor of and in gratitude for MizFit and all she says and does, I am doing a giveaway today! I have a wonderful size L women’s T-shirt designed (I think) by Miz herself. I ordered it because I always assume that if something says “womens” then it is automatically very tiny. But this shirt is actually pretty large, and too large for me. I would guess it is about a size 14-ish. Maybe 12. So I am going to be ordering another in a different size for myself, and I am giving this one away.

In order to be eligible to obtain this fantastic piece of apparel, just leave a comment here about your favorite/most used/most creative excuse to NOT exercise, AND what response you can come up with to turn that around so that you DO exercise.  Example:

Excuse: I don’t have enough time. (this is certainly not creative, but it is common)

Response: I have plenty of time. In fact, I am going to ______ while __________ or instead of ________.

OK? Ready set go!

Nia Nia Everywhere!

I’ve been taking Nia in so many places it’s making my head spin (um, literally!). But it’s very interesting.

Last Sunday after the 5k I went to a great class with an awesome Nia teacher. What I didn’t mention is that that class was actually FILLED with Nia teachers. One of the participants turned out to be a Nia teacher who was visiting from … Ecuador! She was just a few feet away from me and was absolutely amazing to watch: graceful, beautiful, fluid. There was another person near the front who seemed to have an INCREDIBLE amount of energy. Whereas the teacher usually demonstrates, “This is level one.. this is two.. three…” in terms of exertion etc., this woman was operating at like level EIGHT. I was thinking, whoa, are you over the top? Are you trying to outdo the teacher? But it turns out she was an instructor as well. It made me curious – does she teach her classes at that level? Do her students feel intimidated? Or energized?

The next day, I took another class at a new place, where I thought I’d be with a teacher I’d had before and liked a lot (the dimpley, “gooey” one!). But it turned out that she wasn’t there, and the class was taught by a sub. All I can say about that experience is that it was one of the only Nia classes I took where I felt like it just was not a good match for me. The music rubbed me the wrong way (think elevators and dentists). The teacher seemed physically not quite up to the job. She was enthusiastic and seemed to be having a good time, but this class was a little bit too much DIY (do it yourself) for my preference.  If this was my first class, I do not think I would return.

Today, I went to a class two thousand miles from home. I was warmly welcomed by the teacher. It turns out this class is brand new, and there were only two students! (including me!) It’s a good thing this was probably my 8th? class or else I would have probably not been able to deal with that. The teacher was good. The other student was good. It was all good. It didn’t knock my socks completely off, but it felt familiar in all the right ways and unique in some good ways too. I thought it was impressive that this teacher could teach a class to TWO people and seem perfectly comfortable and relaxed, as if she were teaching to two dozen. I was happy I went, and I will certainly try to return if I can manage it. After the class, the teacher asked how I liked it and  said she had not been teaching Nia very long (could’ve fooled me!). I told her I’d enjoyed it a lot. (true)

One of the things I’ve noticed about Nia is their great ability to “translate” certain movements into descriptions that just make so much sense. I am normally a terrible dancer, I have a hard time following instructions and it can take me forever to pick something up. But some of the phrasing I’ve heard in Nia makes me feel like I “get it” right away and I don’t feel like I am completely out of synch with the entire class. A few things I’ve heard have been: “your hands are seaweed” – (yeah, flowy!) – or, “we’re surfing” (changing balance in that crouched position) – wiping a table, pulling out an arrow (from your stomach? OW!) etc. It’s all very visual an accessible.

I am really looking forward to a big “Nia Jam” coming up in a few weeks, which is a two-hour extravaganza taught by a whole slew of teachers. It should be so interesting! and fun. If anybody around wants to check out Nia, this could be a great opportunity to try it out.

Did another 5k – But am I a Runner?

IMG_0625I did my 3rd 5k race today. I was really nervous about it since I have not been running very much at all – maybe a 20 minute run per week -and I had not trained for it. But I was curious to know how the rest of my exercise would prepare me – does general fitness help? And I was curious about how my running time would stand up to the previous two runs.

There were all sorts of impediments that I was sort of hoping would make us decide to NOT do the run. I realized that the major bridge between where I live and the run took place, was closed all weekend for construction. But we ended up going around, and taking two other bridges, and we actually got there in about half an hour.

We got there so early we went to a Starbucks nearby (there are ALWAYS Starbucks nearby, aren’t there?) and I had my 2nd cup of coffee for the morning (probably not wise). We went over to the race course about twenty minutes ahead of time, registered and got little tags to pin to our shirts. This was definitely a low-budget, low-tech, volunteer affair, unlike the other races. Which meant that most of the people participating were more serious runners.

There were only a few minutes to “warm up” and I was sort of kicking myself, because the point of getting there super early was to WARM UP, not to sit and drink coffee at Starbucks. Duh! There was no bell or gun or anything at the Start, just a guy yelling, “Ready…. set… GO!” We went. Most of the crowd (a few hundred people?) took off really, really fast. M and I had sworn to each other that we would try and go at a comfortable pace, and not get all worked up about trying to keep up with folks. This was hard as most people just kept passing and passing us.

For the first mile or so, my feet hurt. My feet haven’t hurt while exercising in MONTHS. But they hurt. Plus I knew I was breathing harder than usual. M kept saying, “It’s going to get easier.” Probably the middle mile was the easiest. My foot pain eased up and we were in sort of a rhythm. It was super windy. We were going against the wind and it felt like a huge hand was just pushing us way back. The good part was that it was right along the water and the Golden Gate Bridge was right there and it looked quite pretty. (not that I looked at it much)

After a while, we started seeing the front runners coming towards us. The route had a turnaround point and those out in front were sailing past. They looked pretty awesome and cool and I felt inspired seeing them. Then I kept wondering, when do WE get to turn around? It took a lot longer to get to that point than I would have liked.

The last mile was both better and worse. The prospect of finishing made me happy, but I think we were both struggling a bit and wondering if it was going to happen. Then the finish line was in sight. We sprinted at the end, so we could finish with a time of 36 minutes. We did! But then I felt instantly nauseated. I had to walk around. I felt pretty awful.

After we drove home and I dropped M off, I noticed that I was only about a mile from my Sunday morning Nia class, and it was starting in 15 minutes. Part of me said, “That’s crazy” and part of me felt like I really, really needed it. I think the run had stressed me. I felt pretty anxious during most of it, asking constantly about the time and trying to figure out if I was going to survive. I was sure I was filled with adrenaline and stress hormones. I felt like I needed the calm and grounding of Nia, even if it was another workout. So I went.

It was lovely, and very energizing. I felt like the run had really warmed me up, plus the room was super hot. I was really happy to be in there. The teacher was fantastic (again).  I was glad I had done it. After the class, I decided to go check out the mega amazing super organic million-times-better-than-Whole-Foods new grocery store.

And it was in there that I bonked. Suddenly I was pushing my cart like a 100 year old person, feeling faint, nauseated, overwhelmed. None of the amazing food looked good to me, even though I hadn’t eaten anything since my PB-on-whole-wheat-English-muffin at 6:30am. (MISTAKE) But I pushed it along for an hour, came home, brought the groceries into the kitchen, feeling worse and worse and worse, then promptly fell into bed and did not move except to moan for the rest of the day (I am still in bed).

I think I got super dehydrated. I also did not do myself any favors by not eating, especially before the Nia class. But I had been feeling so upset-stomachy that food did not appeal. So I pretty much messed myself up today. Oh well. I learned. And I recovered by having some super salty chicken soup that my nice husband brought to me.

But I’m feeling ambivalent about running now. The good news is:

  1. I finished.
  2. I finished with the same time as my last race.
  3. 36 minutes for 3.1 miles is not amazing, but it is also not too shabby. For a 50 yr old who does not run a lot.
  4. It made me feel happy and accomplished, and I got another little ribbon to add to my collection.

The bad news is:

  1. I was really pretty anxious during the whole run.
  2. I was dumb and did not hydrate or eat enough.
  3. I basically was useless the entire second half of the day. I mean, I felt TERRIBLE.
  4. I do not want to run all the time, which is probably necessary for doing better during races than I did today.

The thing is, I actually like running when I am running to run, but not in races. I get too caught up in keeping up with people. Meanwhile, today, an 80 year old limping guy passed us. A woman who probably weighs 150 more than me passed us. A ton of little kids passed us, including a few who fell down and were crying, but got up and still beat us.

We ARE the running Penguins, that’s for sure. Should we just run for the fun of it when we want to, as far as we want to, or should we (or mainly I) keep doing races?

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