So we have a 10k (which will be my longest distance yet) coming up and it is billed as the toughest 10k in the midwest. I am not sure if that is true but I am told it has alot of hills. So the crew and I headed over to a section of the run route and did hill training. We sprinted up the hill then walked down and sprinted up another hill on the other side and so on.
I surprised myself and those in my group with how well I could actually sprint - so that felt good.
Here are the garmin results:
I love that I was actually able to get my heart rate back down during the downhill walks. More so after I struggled with heart rate recovery over the weekend!
How it will feel to hit all of these hills in the middle of a longer run - I am not sure. But it felt great to be out there doing something to prep in advance!
The version I have up so far is a compilation of all of my progress checks last year - so not the easiest to see, but even at the current resolution I think you notice some massive changes overall. (Heck you will even see me standing taller and prouder each time).
I also have some more recent updates I will add on as soon as I get a chance to scan them in.
So I am 4 weeks into a 10 week self defense course and its pretty intense. It is reality based training so you work with a partner in the class and are supposed to be using about 50-70% intensity. Even at that reduced amount I still find myself bruised, banged up and sore the next day or two after the classes.
Today my neck is bugging me some based on the ground work we were doing. In this drill I have to be the attacker and she is now on the ground. She then has to lock down my head and neck and bring it into the mat. So I am sure that had something to do with why my neck was overextended, but I am loving this class and feel like I am getting much more out of it than I expected.
I am 6’4” and still over 300lbs at the moment - so I am not the typical target but that said I was never a very aggressive or maybe the better word is confident guy in the past. That has started to change in the past year with all of the working out, feeling stronger and being more social. But now add on the element of learning how to properly defend myself and avoid potentially bad situations all together and its further enhancing my belief and confidence in myself.
Goes back to that favorite saying of mine - Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.
I picked up a few new toys today. Got an iPod nano to use during my runs. Was tired of having my bulky iPod classic with me. And while I was at Best Buy I also got some new headphones. I went with the Bose IE2 that have these special StayHear tips to keep them in your ears even while exercising. They were a bit pricey but they definitely stay in place and you barely even notice they are in your ears.
So if your in the market for new headphones I highly recommend. Oh and they sound great too! lol
Now onto the run - I usually take Sunday’s as my rest day. Right now I do alternating between kickboxing and restistance training 6 days a week at 6am for an hour. On Tuesdays and Thursday I run right after I am done. On Saturdays I join the run club for an added run. And then on Monday and Wednesday nights I am taking a self defense course.
So I usually take Sunday’s as my rest day but I have set the goal of doing the Walt Disney World Half Marathon in January and I know I have a long way to go in running to reach it. So I set out today to get in 2 miles (I really left with the thought of 3 but I struggled with heart rate out the gate today).
It seems as though when I run (and really at a 12+mph pace its a slow jog) I shot right into the 160s (and that is where I feel myself breathing heavier and my body wishes I could stop). Sometimes after a mile or so my body normalizes but today it was only when I walked for a few minutes that I could get it down and then I went back to running it shot all the way back up again). Maybe the heat of a mid day run?
Any suggestions on specific types of training that will help further condition my body to be able to run at a lower heart rate? Or just keep at it..and I will get there in time?
Today was our first day doing intervals based on speed (instead of the old run/walk). So we did 5 min run/jogging and 1 min sprinting intervals. Its funny how you find yourself looking forward to just the jogging after the sprint - where as a few months (who am I kidding - days) ago I could not wait to stop jogging and just walk :)
In 1987 my family moved to Tinley Park after having grown up on the south side of Chicago and spending some time out in Sioux Falls SD. I entered freshman year of high school as a new student where so many of the kids had already known each other after growing up in the area their entire lives.
I quickly adapted and it was after joining band that I found my place and was surrounded by the absolute best group of friends. High School for the most part was a lot of fun, but there was always my lack of atheletic ability that haunted me. I have talked about it before but I just could not tackle that presidential fitness mile at the start and end of every year. It always left me feeling so insecure and had a great impact on my self confidence that continued on in the background of my mind for years to come.
Today all of these years later I found myself back in Tinley Park to run an 8k race. I had done a 5 miler last month but had to walk some of it. Today I was anxious not sure why I had signed up for another event with a distance I didn’t think I was ready for. But I have found recently that I can turn my running mind into positive thoughts which is a big change from when I started.
So I set out on the course thinking about how lucky I was to be able to be out there on this beautiful day running. How much better (even though it is challenging) it was than being at work or being on my couch. Then I passed the two mile mark and thought I must be getting close to the 3 mile mark but I never saw any markers. So I finally caved and looked at my endomondo tracker to see how far i was and I was already at 3.89 miles - and I knew that I could just keep running until the finish. After all it was only about 1 mile left to go.
One mile? That same distance that always eluded me and made me anxious in high school - the school I passed by on the way to this race….and I was now thinking 4 miles in - its only one more mile? It was yet another turning point in my belief in myself and how far I have come.
Then I started thinking about how my parents, sister and niece were going to be at this race towards the finish line and see me run for the first time and I had this great sense of pride that I was going to greet them knowing I had RUN the whole time for the first time at this 8k distance.
Mackenzie my niece even joined me on the trail for a short distance as I ran by and onto the finish line.
I will never be able to explain how I, Rich Green running in my hometown race the ”Running O’the Green” really felt to cross that finish line today. All I know is I wish I could tell that kid in high school…someday you are going to RUN this town!
And for those of you keeping track that now brings my medal count up to 4!
So I am a 6’4” 300+ lb guy - why do I need a self defense course right? Well because I want to feel more confident and prepared in situations I would normally shy away from - not just in terms of self defense but in feeling confident and powerful and in control. Once again something that would be outside my comfort zone and I am going for it!
“Our running shoes are really erasers. Every step erases a memory of a past failure. Every mile brings us closer to a clean slate. Each footstrike rubs away a word, a look, or an event that led us to believe that success was beyond our grasp.”—John Bingham (via pattidoestris)
What's beyond your comfort zone? Some of the best friends ever - that's what!!!
So my good friend Toni and I are in a heated battle to earn the most medals in 2012 (its a friendly competition).
Today I participated in my first ever 5 mile event (finished in around an 1h10m) and medals were not given out as part of the event. But Toni knowing how hard we are working and how much of a challenge 5miles was going to be for me - had custom medals made up for our entire group.
It had the logo of the race and will always mean more to me than medals given out at other events because it represents not only the achievements I have made in my fitness journey but also the unbelievable friendships I have made along the way!
And that brings my official medal count up to three!!!
So I am not really sure what is going on. I had set a goal of losing 10 lbs in the month of January and last week weighed in at the Martial Arts studio and showed I was down 4lbs. I wasnt happy but I decided to focus on all of the progress I have made since I started 9 months ago.
Today we had our offiical fitness progress checks at the Martial Arts studio and I was 3lbs heavier today than when I weighed in on the exact same scale a week ago.
I know I have not done anything to cause that negative shift - I worked out every single day (kickboxing 3 times a week, strength training 3 times a week - and 4 times out running - after the other workouts).
Food has always been my bigger struggle and I have pushed myself way outside my usual comfort zone and been trying new things, cooking 99.9% of my meals at home (with the exception of getting subway for lunch this past week). I feel as though the portions are all under control, the choices I am making are all healthy and should support my continued weight loss goals…
But something just isnt adding up (except for pounds back on the scale today)????
So I had been doing really well about posting my progress and 4 things I felt good about at the end of each day. And then last week to week and a half I dropped off - mainly because I was really struggling. Struggling with food and all of the changes I was making for the better - but those old habits/addictions to fast foods and sugary foods die hard. I am not going to lie and say I have conquered them, as I think it will remain a struggle for me for a long time. But I am managing them so much better and really exploring new foods, cooking and planning out meals to help me overcome it.
Luckily I am no longer experiencing headaches this week and I dont feel crabby and resentful like I did last week.
I did not hit my weight loss goal for the month of January as I had hoped but I did finally stop to recognize all of the progress I have made since I started all of this 9 months ago. And even though I didnt reach that goal - I did still lose weight so that is never a bad thing.
I also find writing about and sharing all of this here on Tumblr and on my Facebook page has been really good. The feedback I get from those around me is always encouraging and very much appreicated.
As a matter of fact - I did not realize how many of them (facebook friends who read the posts that are feed into my wall from Tumblr) were following along. They actually called me out on not seeing any updates for a while - and that lit the fire which caused this post today.
I am back to feeling positive, focused in the gym and ready to continue to make big changes in all aspects of my life!
- Once again I got to sleep in until 7am but dont feel as refreshed or energized as I did last week. My body really seems to be struggling with the non-stop healthy eatting as I have been craving fast foods, sugar like crazy the last few days and today I am battling a dull headache which just feels like it is related. So as long as I hang in there a little longer I am sure all of this will start to pass. Only ordered a 6inch sub at Subway today - even though I know I could have easily polished off a footlong. I am trying so hard to control portions and make sure I see better results on the scale (than I did this am). I just keep telling myself I know this is all going to pay off, this is all going to be worth it…just dont give in!!
- Went to Tai Chi and Kickboxing and did my best - even thought I am really feeling off tonight. But that meant I still got in 120 jumping jacks, 100 squats, 50 squat kicks with medicine ball and ab work as well!
- There was a little birthday celebration for a fellow kickboxer after class and even though I have been craving sweets so bad, I successfully avoided having any of that really delicious looking birthday cake…(still drooling a little bit)
-My cousins son has been struggling with school since she passed away a few months ago, but his dad posted tonight he had a great day at school! He is a very bright kid and I loved school and think it is so important, so this news really made me so happy to hear. I am serious it changed my entire mood about this long day! Way to go Gregory!!!
Getting a video of my 3.5 year old neice doing her own version of the Plank Off! Was totally awesome and she looked so cute!
Another successful day of eating meals I prepared and have portioned off to hopefully reach my goal weight loss by the end of the month!
Karen Condon - who I met on my first day of kickboxing at my fitness evaluation check (she was my partner for timed situps and push-ups) had gone a stray from the program for several months (I personally had not seen her since my first day) but she was back in action this morning and that made me very, very happy!
Had a really good conversation with my trainer this morning after kickboxing. Looking forward to scheduling some one on one time to work on my technique and form and further plan out goals for myself in the coming year!
I had a hangnail on my toe and like a fool I pulled it off (instead of clipped it off) and in doing so removed about half of the nail off my foot. So my toe is killing me when ever I put to much pressure on it of course, but I still went out there and got 2.5 miles of jogging/walking done after my lower body resistance training.
Felt like I accomplished alot at work in the past two days
Stuck to my plan once again to eat all meals made at home (so healthy foods, correct portions and cost savings all in one!)
Even though it was snowing when I left work, it did not take my an extra long time to make it home which was a welcome break :)
Before I post later on about the good of Wednesday - I will be honest… I am a little frustrated by what I am seeing on the scale. I am a few weeks into my new healthier eatting plan, and have been making just about all of my meals at home, watching portions etc…and yet even with all of my working out I am just not seeing the results on the scale. I seem to be endlessly stuck in this 320’s range. Not sure where I am going off track or what else I need to be doing.
My official time was 1:20 - and we will be doing future Plank Off’s and some other fun challenges at the studio weekly on Saturday mornings going forward!
The Giving Challenge:Pay it Forward x2
Although no one from Do Life knows me well enough, those who are close to me know that I pride myself on being an extremely thoughtful and generous person. Not just within the confines of a week long challenge but in my everyday life. This past year I think has been one in which my random acts have really peaked, perhaps because I had a little extra spending money which allowed me to do more or perhaps because I started feeling even better about myself and I wanted to give back to those who helped and inspired me. And I would like to believe that they have (or will) someday pay those gestures forward in their own lives when they come across someone who really needs it and they have the capacity (not necessarily in in the form of cash) to help out! I also found it hard to pay it forward on command this week (even though I did it) as I really like to do things with a lot of thought and creative energy when it feels right to me. And I also realized that I like to do it without posting about it because I don’t do it for the credit or accolades back to me - but rather to make a difference in someone’s day, week, or life! Mission accomplished :)
Tell a story of how someone went out of their way and changed your day or your life
I realize this sounds more like an acceptance speach at the Golden Globes, but there have been quite a few examples in the past 9 months:
Lee Anne Marino started a Getting Healthy group on Facebook a year ago and although it took me until the end of April to get going, her consistent positive messages and encouragement to get started did in fact change the course of my life. Thanks Lee Anne!
Mary Mackewicz for being the first person to really notice how much I had changed physically from all the working out and eating good, and for saying so in such an excited and encouraging way!
Colleen Zawrazsky gave me the courage to try the Couch to 5K running plan and offered to run my first 5k with me. And Toni Rohder for being by my side the first few times I went running - encouraging me to keep trying and never giving up on me. I completed it in Sept without walking even once !
Kate Ordinas-Lewis had been following my progress via my posts on Facebook and surprised me with book from Life is Good full of posit ie quotes and imagery that really struck a chord with me and was such a pleasant and unexpected gesture that I will always remember and appreciate. Thanks Kate! I am still being the best me I can be :)
Kristine Walker for covering my lawn in 38 cans of Busch Lite and one bottle of Peppermint Schnapps on my birthday. You see I live on a corner at the entrance into my subdivision and someone in my neighbors just about every single week leaves their two empty cans of Busch Lite and a shorty bottle of Peppermint Schnapps on my lawn. It drives me insane that someone would be so lazy and leave this on the lawn of a house in a neighborhood they must also live in! So to wake up on my birthday and find that she had gone through all of that trouble made me so happy at a time I really needed it with the loss of my cousin the week before! Thanks Kristine for getting out there at 5am to have some fun!
To the older couple who looked exactly like Santa and Mrs Claus - for stopping in front of my house to admire the Christmas lights up I put and taking the time to thank me for doing it. That made my entire Christmas season and “I Believe”!
Everyone I work out with at TM Martial Arts - to say you each play a part in changing my life would be an understatement. Thank you all so much!
Where are you right now physically? Where do you want to be in 11 weeks?
Right now I am in the 320s were I seem to have been stuck for a while. I am hoping with the deep clean on my eating I will be able to blast out of the 300s all together soon enough.
In terms of running I am not as far along as I think I feel like I should be. I see the progress that people like Ben and others I am following on these forums have made in their ability to run much further than I am able to do - in a similar amount of time training (if I go back in their blogs and follow their progress correctly). But I am hanging in there and trying to hold on until I too have that “break-thru” moment. But I am just not there yet. So I keep training, keep signing up for events to make sure I stay motivated and hope one day it all clicks
What part of your life from last week can you improve on this week? Food? Exercise? Family? Career?
Food is vastly improved this week.
Exercise has been consistent for months and this week I added in Tai Chi to the mix. Plus i have a renewed sense of focus and intensity while I am working out
Family - after a really great holiday and lots of time spent together we are all doing great. No real areas of improvement I see there
Career I will have more thoughts on this later, and really its about me having that creative spark once again and just not sure how to make the most of it or harness it yet!
The Good this week:
(some of these were posted individually during the week so I have linked back to them - but a few others I never got a chance to post over the weekend so I am including the full set here)
· After resistance training I hit the trail not only once but twice which each round of our run club – so I got in 4 miles (mostly walking due to the drifted slushy snow). Felt great to be out there!
· Came home and kept moving – got a bunch of things done around my house
· Went out with friends to hear a cover band and had a great time: good music, good friends and a little bit of dancing never hurt anyone J
· Came home late (so this should probably be in the Sunday update technically) but prepped food and got it into the crock pot to make apple-cinnamon oatmeal which was ready for me in the morning!
Sunday Jan 15
· Enjoyed my oatmeal for breakfast and then immediately started prepping another meal (Italian Sunday Gravy) for my Sunday Funday meal - so it could cook while I was out
Spent time with family at a cousin’s Christening and had to carefully navigate my way around the food – so as not to veer off my goals.
They had some family football pools during the part and I won one of them!
My “Life begins at the end of your comfort zone” medal hanger arrived and now I can’t wait to start filling it up!
Final Notes and Personal Thoughts:
All of the thinking and writing and posting and blogging is stirring up something inside of me to make more changes in my life, to keep pushing myself outside of that old comfort zone and to live my life to my fullest.
I am realizing that my open and honest approach about all of this is impacting others in ways I never could have imagined - and the responses have been so cool and humbling!
Something I have realized about myself that I guess I never really knew before. I can really be involved/interested in something but I only take that to the 80-90% level. What do I mean by that? I am beginning to think it has always been a little bit of self sabotage. It was “easier” to stop trying than to stick to things when they got a bit challenging. And I am not talking about every single thing I encounter, I finish lots of things. But when it comes to weight loss, I had lost a whole bunch of weight 6 years ago but then I hit a long plateau, lost site of the goal and slid back (slowly) to where i was in April 369.8 lbs (51lbs heavier than I was when I started 6 years ago). But I have more perspective, support and determination this time around - so that is not going to happen…this is it this time!
Didn’t get a chance to post last night, so today is a double feature!
Thursday Jan 12th
- Today I want to start by remembering my cousin Kelly who we lost back in October. It would have been her 43rd birthday today and she was certainly a big part of the good in my life all of those years. We had the best times together and I miss her but I also feel so lucky to have all of those wonderful times and memories. Happy Birthday Kelly!
- After doing Tai Chi followed by Kickboxing last night, I was up at the crack of dawn for lower body resistance training followed by about 2.5 miles logged on the local trail. That is 4 different workouts/activites in a 12-14 period. Boy I have really come a long way! (And today my legs are feeling every inch of how far I have come - they are exhausted LOL)
- My Slow Cooker Revolution cookbook arrived and I can not wait to try out some of these meals!
- Made another really tasty home made meal - Ahi Tuna steak (blacken seasoning and grilled) with steam brocolii and corn to go along with it!
Friday Jan 13th
- Plank Off! Held our first Plank Off challenge at the martial arts center where I kick box. 5 participants today - but I made a fun video out of it and posted it on our group page on facebook and it looks like we will have several more next time aorund (we will be holding them on Saturday mornings BEFORE workingout going forward). And for the record I got 1:20 today
- While I am bummed the Chicago Polar Dash was postponned until next Saturday (the 21st) I guess I should consider it good that it gives me one more week of training before the event!
- Another delicious home cooked meal on the grill! (I didnt see the post about putting the knife on the right until after I snapped up my photo of tonights meal - so I will make sure to watch for that going forward LOL)
- Went and got some supplies for one of the new slow cooker recipes and successfully avoided buying anything at the store that does not get me closer to my goals. But boy oh boy did some of the bakery items look/smell so good!
Today was good but tonight was GREAT! I really felt like I was “Doing Life”
- Eating portion 3 of 4 of the Sausage Stew I made on Sunday night. Not only does this mean I am sticking to my healthy eating goal, but it also means I am helping my save money goal as well. Bonus!
- Since I am starting my Tai Chi class tonight, I got to sleep until 7am this morning and that feeling of sleeping in just a little, always makes me feel good all day.
- I am so glad I decided to give Tai Chi a try - it really made me realize as I was there in the room, just how far I have come in less than a year. Not specifically on a fitness level but on a my life is completely different now than it was then and I am loving every minute of it like I never did before kind of way.
- And I went right for Tai Chi into Kickboxing and felt on fire during the session tonight. Just felt full of energy, strong and powerful on that bag. What an awesome night!
Oh and I forgot to note that I got 120 jumping jacks in there today, along with 100 squats too! And I kicked some major bag tonight!
I noticed that many others are posting the 4 things they thought were good about each day, at the end of each day (where as I had saved them all up and made them one big post at the end of the week). But I really like having smaller updates to read and therefore am going to start posting them daily myself. So here are Monday and Tuesday to get caught up:
- Day 1 of a new 10 week Kickboxing session felt great. Even though I have been consistenting working out, its always nice to have a little “reset” to focus on new goals and dreams for the weeks ahead. And seeing new faces and familiar faces back again is exciting and made for a great start to this day
- Turns out several of my friends have checked out the blog and my week one submission and I have been getting all kinds of cool feedback from them, about how it helped them seeing how open and honest I am, or how it inspired them to get themselves back on tract and so on…way cool! Thanks everyone for letting me know, that keeps me working hard for me and for you!
- Today we had a group lunch brought in at work and I was pleased that I made a healthy selection. But without even thinking about it in the moment I poured myself a cup of diet soda and refilled it a few times (because that was my way of life). So that meant I totally blew my one or less a day rules I set for myself last week. I didnt even think about what I was doing in the moment, it was only when I started reflecting back on my day that I even realized it. So that is why I am really enjoying documenting this stuff each evening - opening my eyes to many things about myself in a good way!
- Looking forward to a serious upper body resistancce training session and run afterwards tomorrow so it will be heading to bed ontime again today - which always makes me feel good tomorrow!
Tuesday Jan 10th
- First day back to full resistance training sessions and today was upper body. I used heavier resistance consistently on each exercise today, than I had ever done in the past. And this was after not doing it since early Novemeber. Usually we come back feeling a bit weaker from the break but not me, not today! I really felt like I was on an all new mission and the only way to achieve my goals is to push myself harder than before. FELT GREAT!
- Once again I had a full day of home made meals and I am really starting to enjoy the entire planning, prepping and cooking process. It was actually something I was looking forward to doing when I got home tongith and as I blogged about - kept me from coping out and driving through somehwere.
- I successfully avoided having diet soda today, but it was not easy
- Brought the Plank Off Throw Down into my kickboxing class and we are having our own plank off on Friday! Everyone is getting excited about it, so I am really looking forward to it!
I never knew how much I would enjoy really cooking!
Ok it has taken a few days to get myself focused and back into the swing of things - but now that I am getting some meal ideas, recipes and suggestions from friends together - I am really enjoying this cooking thing!
I had one of the portions of my left over Sausage Stew for lunch (and it was better today than right out of the oven, I think because the flavors had a chance to further blend together - and I am not usually a big fan of “left overs”). But because I focused on keeping track of the portion sizes - I was definitely feeling hungry when I was leaving work today.
And normally I would have just caved in and stopped and picked up something to eat on my commute home - and it would never have been healthy. But tonight I was looking forward to coming home and working on another meal and that kept me from driving through. I mean that is HUGE in my world!!!
I still have alot to learn - but that’s ok as long as I keep having fun along the way!
So I have been discovering the kitchen applicance I have owned for years but hardly every used - can be a great tool in my quest to eat healthy as set for in my goals for this year.
The slow cooker, or Crock Pot, as most of us know it is that appliance. I have tried to make things in the past and found that almost everything I made came out tasting the same. But I really didnt follow any specific recipes or anthing in the past.
Then I started seeing so many people posting about delicious things they have been making and based on my friend Shawn’s recommendation I have ordered the Slow Cooker Revolution cookbook from America’s Test Kitchen.
I really can not wait until it arrives - as having a meal ready when I get home really does keep me on track and also away from the temptation of my arch nemesis the drive thru on my way home.
it should be here in a few days, and I will be sure to post updates on how good everything is!
This recipe was taken from Men’s Health Jan/Feb 2012 edition as featured in the “Belly Off! Club” section. It was a go to meal for a guy named Jerod Green, 37, from Chicago (no relation oddly enough, but alot in common for sure) who went from 333 lbs down to 200 over 18 months.
I decided to have some fun (Food Network Style) and I took photo’s along the way so I could make this post more enjoyable :) And let me say it really was a nice meal and something I will definitely make again!
First step is to saute’ a diced onion and a diced green pepper in a little bit of olive oil until they soften.
Next you need to add in a package of precooked turkey sausage which you have sliced (I used Butterball Turkey Smoked Sausage with 60% less fat - which comes out to just about 10g of fat for one serving of this stew). While adding in the sausage you also add in a 14.5oz can of roasted tomatoes and 1/2 tsp each of dried basil and dried oregano.
You allow that to cook for about 7 minutes and then stir in two bags of baby spinach (9oz each). And allow the spinach to cook down. I needed to add one bag let it cook down and then another bag - as it doesnt all fit in the pan at one time!
Once cooked down, pour the mixture into a casserole dish and top with low-feta crumbled feta cheeese and back in the over at 350 degrees until the cheese begins to brown about 10 to 15 minutes.
The recipe recommended dividing into 4 servings - one for tonight…..
and the other three I now have for meals later in the week!
I used www.nutritiondata.com to figure out the exact info on this recipe and here is what I came up with:
Serving size 354g (1/4 of full recipe)
Fat: 12g (saturated 5g)
(In the future I will look for an even leaner or less fat version of the turkey sausage - but this was the leanest they had at the store i went to today)
So I set out to the grocery store armed with a list of ingredients I need in order to make a few different recipes I found that were of interest to me. I get to the store and it takes me a little time to find a few things, as they are not items I normally purchased in the past. But I just could not really find exactly what I needed for one of them. And I am just not the kind of guy who will run to several stores to put together one meal. (Don’t worry none of this lead up to an excuse to eat bad, its just something I am going to have to get used to I guess)!
Do Life Challenge - Week 1: The Good, the Goals and the Excuse!
Do Life Challenge Week 1 assignment:
Ben requested that we come up with 5 specific goals and assess where we are at currently:
Lose 10 pounds by Feb 1st. This is all going to come down to eatting properly and logging my food so I can keep track, as I have been working out consistently 6 days a week since I started 4/25/11. Our kickboxing program includes having the trainer review your food logs at the end of each week so that is going to help keep me accountable and also course correct me along the way!
Improve my running endurance - I want the 1.5 mile runs to feel smoother (many days I am still reathing so heavy during them) and build up to the point where 5k’s are not such a daunting endeavor. To accomplish this I have setup a schedule that allows me to continue run training even with the full 6 day a week kickboxing program. (I also have a gym membership to use the treadmill if needed so really adverse weather is not an excuse not to get a run in)
Quit diet pop (again) but for good this time. I have totally quit it in the past but after a while I just want a “treat” and having one turns into drinking them all the time. So I will gradually drop back down to allowing myself only 1 per day this week and every other day next week until I am fully off them again by Feb 1st
After a holiday full of spending - the focus goes back on to saving for some home improvement projects I really want to have done this spring. So I figured out roughly the amount it will cost and the number of checks until I would like to have it done - and began putting that portion away starting with my check on Friday!
Maintain a positive outlook and attitude. This has been something I kept as a goal for a long time and one of those little reminders I like to look at now and then. I am for the most part positive with others, but I was not always quite as positive with myself. That has gotten easier as I started to lose some weight, make new friends, get involved in new activies and figure out what life is like at the end of my comfort zone!
Number of push-ups I did in one minute: 22
My biggest excuse: Here again it would be food related - and its that feeling that I worked hard today and deserve something delcious to eat. The only way to avoid that I have learned is you have to plan - as the saying goes if you fail to plan than you plan to fail. So by planning meals out ahead I wont leave myself open to making poor choices going forward.
The things I did good and am most proud of this week:
Still feeling really good about the fact that I did the Polar Plunge yesterday in honor of my friend, Theresa Lang, who died suddenly in a car accident on Dec 9th. She did it last year and the place hosting the event had it in her memory this year. Was a great time and neat way to celebrate her much too short life
After hosting 4 holiday parties in 4 weekends, I took down all of the Christmas stuff today (and I put up lots of it inside and outside - they call me Clark LOL). Those parties are alot of work but it was a good run and a great holiday season
Made homemade meals all day today again!
Created a “group” page on facebook for the fellow runners I have befriended and its growing and inspiring other non-runners to join us!
Got an email from my dad and messages from my mom and sister letting me know how much they all love the iPads I surprised them with for Christmas. I knew how much I loved mine and wanted to share them with them - but I had no idea just how much they would all take to them. Feels great to make them all so happy!
After weeks of being on the go non-stop I finally had an evening that was totally free. So I just relaxed and enjoyed a little reading and tv. Felt great to give myself this small break tonight
Went out and did a little over 2.5 miles this morning and once again we were greeting by the friendly deer who are looking for food. Clearly others on the trail must feed them as they get really close and are very comfortale around people. Will need to bring some carrots with me next time!
Made my lunch for work and cooked at home for diner - trying to get this down into a habit of just part of my daily routine
Was successful in encouragingg a few others to sign up for the Chicago Polar Dash with me and the others in our Crazy Train running club
Got to bed by 10pm as it always makes me feel better for those 6am kickboxing workouts if I get a full night sleep
Signed up for a 5 week Tai Chi course. I dont know anything about Tai Chi but the Martial Arts studio where I take Kickboxing was offering this as a new course so I went ahead and signed up. I think it will compliment my Kickboxing and Run Training nicely
Had a good conversation with a co-worker who is originall from India. We were talking about differences in cultures and foods etc and it was a really interesting discussion from both perspectives. We have worked togehter for many years and for some reason never talked about any of this before. So I enjoyed that alot
Shared the Polar Dash story of fellow Do Lifer (whose name is Rich) with my workout group and thanked them for always being there for me and supporting me at my fitness level instead of looking down on me for not quite being at their level yet. Keep up the good work Rich - many of us are here to support you too!
Did kickboxing at 6am this morning and went back out at 4pm to meet up with my run training friends to get in some added mileage. This was not a previoulsy scheduled event but with the weather being almost 50 degrees again here in the Chicagoland area on Jan 6th we didnt want to waste the opportunity! Logged another 1.5 miles of jogging and 1.5 of walking
Went to the the dentist for a cleaning/checkup and everything looked good. No new cavities!
After the afternoon run I went to the grocery store and picked up something to make for diner, I was very close to just “driving thru” but I reminded myself about my goals and how that would not get me where I really want to go. So I am really happy I made the right choice!
Registered for two more races, both coming up in March and both 8k’s! I have some serious work to do to be ready for running 8ks (I know I can run/walk them if I have to but want to have a break through on the running so bad!)
A new 10 week session begins in my fitness/kickboxing program. So that means we have our fitness progress checks
Weight 330.2 (up 4lbs since my last progress check in Nov - darn you delicious holiday party food!)
Flexibility - maintained a 20 in the sit and reach
1.5mile run 17:36 (This is my fastest time yet! I am so happy about that!!)
After completing the fitness progress - I went and logged an added 3.69 miles of walking afterwards. So between all of my kickboxing and all of the added run/walk trainings I am way over the added amount of exercise we were asked to do this week - feels great!
Spent time with friends at a second benefit in honor of the beautiful friend we lost. (Below is a photo of Theresa and I taken in Nov - we all miss her a lot)
Started looking up new healthy recipes in prep for next week!
Looked up new recipes, created a meal plan and went to the grocery store to pick up supplies so I am all set for good eating this week!
Going to enjoy my much needed rest day (no work out planned today - as I did one or more all previous 6 days this week)
Really enjouyed the assignment of having to reflect on each day and log what I thought was something good. I realize that on some days I simply could not come up with 4 things that really felt worthy of putting down here, but even if the challenge doesnt call for us to keep doing this - I will be keeping it up personally anyway!
Spent even more time reading the posts from others who have taken the challenge and feel so inspired, motivated and encouraged that we are all going to succeed in our own ways!
So I know I still need to put up a post that further details the progress I have made since I began this journey back in April, but until that time…
I am stepping outside my comfort zone once again. I signed up earlier today for a 5 week Tai Chi course which will compliment the Kickboxing and Run Training I am already doing!
I dont know much about Tai Chi but TM Martial Arts is offering it as a new class that I can take right before Kickboxing on Wednesday nights so I decided to give it a try. Look what happened last time I stepped out of my comfort zone and signed up for something there!