Tuesday, September 30, 2014

You Gained During Training??

It has come to my attention that my jeans are tighter than they were a few months ago. And this doesn't make me happy.

I see transformation photos allllll day long of runners who have lost 100's of pounds, and here I am, half marathon training, and I've gained. Yes, gained. How many pounds? Not entirely sure and it doesn't REALLY matter. Point is, pants are tighter, I gained.

So how did it happen? I could spout some shit about how it is all muscle and blah blah blah. But no, muscle didn't make my pants tighter in my waist (however, muscle HAS made my jeans tighter in the calves and thighs, #stronglegsforthewin)

Want to know why my pants are tighter? Because I ate more calories than I burned. That's right, I've been eating like I'm training for a marathon, not a half. But does this mean I've failed? Hell no. I've trained for a half marathon, that I will be running in 19 days, and no one can take that away from me.

So what DOES this mean? It means that, once my half is over, I'm going to work on losing some of my excess fat. It doesn't mean I'm going to jump into a low-carb, low-cal, no gluten, Beachbody/Advocare hybrid. No, it means that once my half is done, I will give myself a few days to recover, than work at losing some excess fat, in a slow and sustainable way. I will keep moving, keep running (less miles and less often), I will add in some body weight exercise, I will walk, and I will eat for the lifestyle I live, not for the lifestyle I think I live.

Most importantly, I will remember that the number on my pants and the scale is not everything. But in order to ensure I can run for years to come, taking some extra weight off my joints won't hurt. I don't want to lose 100lbs over night (or ever probably). I don't want to lose 30lbs in 30 days. I want to lose weight as my body lets go of it, while still enjoying my life. Because THAT is what works.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Polar Wednesday - H7 Heart Rate Sensor & Polar Beat App

Product: H7 Heart Rate Sensor & Polar Beat
Designed for: Various Sports/Training
Price: $79.95/App is free
What Comes In The Box: H7 Heart Rate Sensor and Strap

If you are looking for a reasonably priced training aid, the Polar H7 Heart Rate Sensor is perfect for you. The H7 is a heart rate sensor that is bluetooth enabled and links up with several of the Polar products.
But what sets this heart rate monitor strap apart from the others is the integration with the Polar Beat The H7 will turn your phone into the training computer, creating a pseudo watch/heart rate strap experience. Turn on your phones GPS, and you have a GPS device, turn off your GPS, you have a cross-training device. It work for all types of exercises and fitness.The Polar Beat app is available for both iPhone and Android\and is completely free. But the information you get from it is invaluable.

You are able to plan, train, analyze and share (because a workout isn't a workout unless it's posted on FB, #amiright?)

Polar Beat will allow you to plan your training sessions, allowing you to set  calorie burn or distance goals. In the Training mode Polar Beat with give you "real-time graphical and voice guidance" to ensure you are reaching the goals you set. Once your session is done, you can analyze your heart rate zones, distances, calories burned, etc, with great charts and easy to read outputs. Finally, you can share your training results to Twitter or Facebook, showing your family and friends how totally awesome you are!

The H7 is also compatible with several other Polar products, including the new V800 and the Polar Loop (which I will be doing a write-up on soon, as I've been wearing it for a couple weeks now).

The H7 comes in three great colors, Pink, Blue and Black and is waterproof and can be used in conjunction with other waterproof Polar products.

If you have any questions - let me know! Are you currently using a the H7 or the Polar Beat app?

Monday, September 22, 2014

Out of my Element

For the past 10 days, I have been dog-sitting at my boyfriend's parents house. And to say it threw off my game is a bit of an understatement...let me explain

Things related to their house that threw me off my game...

1) They live on a dirt road, that is not grated, so there are tons of holes and places for me to severely injure myself. This alone scared me out of running most days.
2) Their house is surrounded by main roads and factories, so the options for running were few and far between
3) There neighborhood is not the "nicest" so being out after dark wasn't an option for me

Things not related to their house that threw me off my game.....

1) Felt a cold coming on, the stuffy nose, the cough, the exhaustion, it was all there, just waiting to strike
2) Another type infection threatening, and I'll leave it at that
3) Lack of good sleep due to not being in my own bed

So, I'm here to admit, that with only 5 weeks left until my half, I ran a grand total of 1.5 miles last week...........ouch. I walked a 5k yesterday with a friend and we kept a good pace but actual running......1.5 miles.

But I'm not stressing. Because it's over, it's done with, and that off week certainly isn't going to make or break me. In fact, it may have even helped, allowing extra rest time and recovery of sore muscles. I'm here to tell you that "falling off" doesn't mean you failed. It means you lived, that shit happened. So are you going to sit around and beat yourself up over it for days? Or make a change. I personally plan to make a change.

Today, I am back at it. I usually run Tues/Thurs/Sun but this week I'll be running Mon/Wed/Sun, due to a hair appointment tomorrow (yup, I change my schedule for hair appointments!). 5 Monday, 5 Wednesday, 10 Sunday! Here we go!

Who's running with me in spirit this week?

Monday, September 15, 2014

It's The Final Countdown!

(Don't pretend you didn't sing my title.....cause I know you did.)

Yes, the final countdown. I have less than 35 days until my very first half marathon. And although I have a little over a month, I am already thinking of what it will feel like to cross that finish line, to finally be a half marathoner, to have proven to myself (and others) that a morbidly obese person can do a half marathon.

As I eagerly count down the miles (75.1) until the big day, I also, as odd as it sounds, am trying to cherish them. I want to cherish the time before the big day, cherish those good (and bad!) runs, cherish the rest days. Why? Because this experience has taught me so much about myself.

I Don't Give Up - My training started way back in January, and I had planned to do two full plans before the big day. But I completely and utterly burned myself out from January to March. I was only averaging about 25 miles a month those three months, but I was on a treadmill, I was indoors, I wasn't eating enough, and it was hard. My last long run was in March, 10 miles, on a treadmill. I watched Grease all the way through and still had time left. It was sooo mentally draining. From April to July, I averaged 14 miles a month........14 miles. I could have quit completely, ate the run cost and moved along. But I didn't. Instead, I put on my big girl panties, found a 12 week training program, and got to work. I had a half marathon to do, I wasn't going to settle for anything less. Last month I ran 40.6 miles, which is only 15.6 less than I had ran April through July. I got back on that horse in a big bad way.

My Heart Is Stronger Than My Head - I struggle with negative thoughts, doubt, & lack of self confidence. About every other run I do, my doubts start, I tell myself I probably won't be able to do it, I'll probably exceed the time limit, I'll probably pass out half way through. But, than, my heart takes over, and my next run I get out there and believe in myself. In my heart I know I was meant to do this. Sometimes I just have to remember to tell my head that.

I Am Stronger Than I Thought -
This quote sums up my experience. Before I started this, I could have never believed I could run 7 miles in a row, or 8, or even 4. The old me "couldn't" run, "couldn't" stick with a training plan, "couldn't" run more than 30 seconds at a time, or more than a quarter mile. But the new me can. I can run for more than 30 seconds, I can run more than a quarter mile, I can run 7 miles in a row, and I can turn my dreams into a plans.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Polar Wednesday - FT4

Polar FT4 in Purple/Pink
Photo from Polar's website

Product: FT4 Heart Rate Monitor
Designed for: Fitness and Cross Training
Price: $99.95
What Comes In The Box: 

  • Polar FT4 training computer 
  • Polar H1 heart rate sensor 
  • FT4 Getting Started Guide
The Polar FT4 is your basic heart rate monitor, as it counts calories burned and tracks your heart rate in relation to your Target Heart Rate Zone. The Polar FT4 is perfect for any type of cross training or fitness, and is even suitable for swimming. 

Setting up and using the FT4 is simple. Upon receiving, just input your basic settings, like height, weight and gender and you are set to go! 

For heart rate tracking, the Heart Rate Sensor will need to be worn. The FT4 will link with this to accurately keep track of your heart rate during workouts.

Currently, there are 4 colors available, Pink, Silver, Green, and Black. 

The FT4 was my first heart rate monitor, so I can personally vouch for it's usefulness and ease. It is a quality product and once I moved on to a new device, I passed it along to a friend, whom is still using it today (she also loves it!). 

For more information on the Polar FT4, you can visit the Polar website at http://www.polar.com/us-en/products/get_active/fitness_crosstraining/FT4. Or, feel free to ask me any questions you might have!