Monday, April 29, 2013

Year of the Badass- The Half Marathon

So, here's my lengthy half marathon recap.  If you don't want to read all of the details, you can scroll through and look at the pictures and I will provide a brief overview at the bottom (as to not give anything away), but I had no idea what to anticipate going into my race, so here's the nitty gritty for all interested parties. 

I ran my first half marathon yesterday, April 28, 2013 with one of my best friends, Shannon.  Prior to this, we've ran 5ks and trained, but this was our first "big" race.  We did the Run Like a Diva  (here's their facebook page) half marathon in Myrtle Beach SC.  

I try to be prepared for everything and I stress if I can't plan something out or don't know how it's going to go.  I worried about my phone battery dying during the race.  No music?  No Nike+ to track my run and give me my pace?  Oh no!  We couldn't have that.  So, I got a new iphone5 before the run.  My old one was a piece of crap and neither of the buttons worked anyway.  The people at the apple store showed me how to put this "ghost button" on there so I would have a home button.  It was time for a new phone anyway.  The weather forecast called for rain.  I've never ran in the rain.  I was stressed.  I took 2 sets of everything that I may need, just in case.  I even took my old running shoes.  What I thought may happen to my current ones, who knows, but I was prepared, JUST IN CASE! 

Our goal was to finish the half in 2.5 hours.  It was a lofty goal, and I was prepared to finish anywhere from 2:30-2:45. 

I don't know exactly when we decided to do a half marathon.  I know it was before Christmas, but we didn't register until later.  We ran a lot in October and November... a little in December.  January got cold.  We picked back up in February and March more heavily and started adding and extending our long runs.  We ran several (2-4) times a week, doing 2-4 miles, and tried to do a long run on Sundays.  There were a few Sundays we missed.  We did an 8 mile run and an 8.5 mile run, but those were the longest runs we did prior to the half.  We do Zumba twice a week, and weights or crossfit 2-3 times a week, on average also.  I try to walk 1-2 miles on my lunch on the days that the weather is nice, but it's not a definite thing.  I researched training programs and we tried to loosely follow Hal Higdon's plan.

About 2 weeks before our half, 8 miles was the longest run we had done.  I dreamed that Shannon and I showed up to run and the course (which was not at the beach) was not marked, so we had to follow pacers.  We started out with white trucks as our "pacers" but they stopped at mile 3.  We then had to follow runners that were pacers, and ours stopped at mile 8 to rest.  The race coordinator insisted that she stop to rest, but said that we could go run the hill that was next to us to finish the race.  So we ran the hill and were still only at 12 miles, so we had to run the hill again, and a bunch of other runners were closing in on us but Shannon sprinted and took first place, while 2 other girls finished in front of me and I got 4th. 

This comes into play in a little while.

Someone sent me a link about how to carb load before a race.  It was for a full marathon and it said to start 3 days prior to the race.  Well, I knew I wasn't running a full marathon, but I allowed myself to have a few of the things that I wanted a few days leading up to the race.  The run was on Sunday, and on Wednesday, my office manager bought lasagna from Olive Garden for administrative assistant's day.  So, I had lasagna, salad and a breadstick.  I had a regular, healthy dinner.  On Thursday, I had a regular lunch, but I had some left over salad and a breadstick with it.  We took the hubby's mom out for dinner for her birthday.  I had grilled salmon, broccoli and mashed potatoes.  Friday, I had Japanese for lunch.  It had been so long since I had it and it was DELICIOUS!!!  Friday night, we got to the beach and we went to Dick's Last Resort.  You know, the one where they make you wear a condom hat with a funny saying!

 There, I had blackened chicken, mixed veggies and rice.  I even had a few drinks Friday night, mixed with and followed by water, of course- couldn't get dehydrated! 

Saturday, we woke up and I had one piece of blueberry loaf cake (think pound cake) and we went to breakfast, where I had a bacon and egg sandwich with hashbrowns.  For lunch, I had steamed oysters with crackers.  Then, we went big for dinner.  We went to the seafood buffet and I ate like it was my last meal!!!  If it looked good, it went on my plate.  And man, was it good!  I see why I was a fatty before!!!  I LOVE to eat good food!  I even had dessert! 
Saturday morning, I had a bagel thin with about half of a Laughing Cow cream cheese wedge and a banana. 

I drink water throughout the day, every day, but around Tuesday or Wednesday, I really started paying attention and trying to add a little more each day.  Friday and Saturday, I drank water like it was my job.  I didn't drink much Sunday morning, because I always have to pee and I wasn't going to stop during the run.  I did drink a Gatorade prime on the way to the race.  They're only a few ounces- think, kind of like Gu, but not that gross, slimy texture that makes you want to gag.  Love them for long runs. 

The packet pickups I've had for 5ks in the past have been just that... a packet pickup.  You give your name, they give you your stuff, you leave.  This was so much more.  I guess that's where the "expo" comes in.  There were hundreds of people EVERYWHERE when we arrived.  We got a free koozie when we walked through the door.
Then we were directed to Gym 1.  In Gym 1, I bought a 13.1 sticker for my car and for my phone.  The one for my car actually says but the word run looks like the number 1.  Cute, right?!  They had tons of items to purchase... you name it, they had it!  Except for my Gatorade prime, that I had to go to the grocery store for.  But they had clothes, sports bras, jewelry, shoes, Gu, everything.  Shannon and I both ended up buying SPI belts and we LOVED them!!!  I'm very happy with my purchase!  It was great for the race and they really do stretch to fit a LOT of crap in them.  I had 2 packs of shot blocks, gum, and extra ear phones in mine.  Shannon had 1 pack of shot blocks and her phone in hers.  And they didn't move during the run, AT ALL!  I highly recommend them if you're in the market for something similar.  You will see it in some of the pics below.  It's also what I attached my bib to, so I didn't have to get any holes in my shirt!  Plus one for the SPI belt!   At the expo, they even had djs playing music.  The energy was great!  In Gym 1, we got our bibs.
Then, they told us to go to Gym 2 for tshirt pick up.  Gym 2 is also where Ali Vincent, the first female Biggest Loser, was meeting people and signing autographs.  There were some size issues with the tshirts, but the race organizers provider changed providers, and they are making it right (sending us new shirts in the mail).  Ali was soooo nice and encouraging.  I can't say enough good things about her.  She took time with each person and talked with them individually and personally.  She signed anything she was asked to.  She is a genuine person with a wonderful spirit and it made me love her even more.  I'm so proud of her accomplishments and know she will continue to do great things.  By the way, she is running 13 half marathons in 2013!  How awesome is that?!
There was also this fabulous DIVA that was dancing, taking pictures with everyone and keeping the energy level up!  It was hilarious!

After the expo, we rode the race course so we could get a feel for it and know what to expect.  By the time we made it out to the beach, it was cloudy and chilly.  But, I did slip my bathing suit cover off long enough to snap a picture. 

This is the first time in a while that I've actually felt comfortable in a bikini. 
More beach fun.

Then we went out for dinner, but had a photo shoot first!

I had mentally planned to be in bed by 10:30 or 11, to get plenty of rest.  When we got back to the room, we had to make signs for our cheerleaders.

And I had to get my stuff ready.
Notice the SPI belt in there (black with a pink zipper) that my bib is attached to.  You'll see it again in more pics coming. I ended up not wearing the hat.  It was in case of rain.  Told you I tried to prepare for everything. 

Shannon and I both kept putting off going to sleep, like if we didn't go to sleep, morning wouldn't come.  To say I was nervous was an understatement.  We finally went to bed around midnight, and had to get back up at 5 am. 

I was still worried about the weather.  The percentage of chance of rain had gone down, but was still there on my weather app.  But, we woke up to this:
The weather was gorgeous, and even warmer than the chilly night before.  No rain in sight!  It was the big day!  I was kind of on auto pilot all morning, and even through the race.  I think the nerves and adrenaline took over.  I got ready and we headed to the race.  We got there around 6:15 or so, and lineup started at 6:30.  There were THOUSANDS of people EVERYWHERE!!! 
We both had to pee, so we stood in line at the 20 port-a-johns that they had for a race with THOUSANDS of women.  It took forever.  I peed before I left the room, but I still HAD to again.  We should have gotten there a little earlier, to eliminate extra stress from waiting in line for so long.  So, we got through the line, lined up at our pace marker, and it was time to start.  I remember them singing the national anthem and cheering at the end of it, but it's also kind of a blur. 

I started my Nike+ app and the line started to move.  We didn't make it far before we stopped and waited a few more seconds to really get going.  I had my app set to tell me my distance and pace every .25 miles.  I went back and forth on how often I wanted to hear it.  When I trained, I started with it telling me every minute, but thought that may be too much while doing the half, and finally decided on every .25 miles.  It worked out really well.  Side note- I LOVE the Nike+ app because you can track all of your runs, your total distances, your paces, it breaks up your pace by mile, gives your average pace for each run and total runs, and your friends can like and comment on your status on facebook and it actually cheers for you through your earbuds while you're running.  It's very encouraging for me. 

We lined up in the middle of the 11-12 minute group.  Our goal pace was 11:30.  In 5ks, I usually line up ahead of my pace, because so many people just get in line and don't pay attention to the paces.  With this, I figured I needed to be in my right spot. 

We crossed the start line and I spotted my dad, his girlfriend and my brother.  They were later getting there and we didn't get to see them before we started, so it was great seeing them right as we started.  From riding the course the day before, we knew there would be a long straight stretch to start off.  We hit mile 1 in no time, and we were ahead of pace, according to my app.  I could see the 11 minute pacer (wearing balloons that stuck up over the mass of people).  I think it was before mile 2 that we passed the first dj.  There were lots of people, along the first few miles, cheering us along.  People were on their balconies and on the side of the road watching, holding signs and cheering.  It seemed like no time that we hit mile 2, then we made the turn off that of first long straight stretch.  I couldn't believe how fast that part had gone by.  The pacer was still in sight too.  The first water station was at mile 3, and I didn't need any, so we kept going. 

There was another water station around mile 4, and I was going to take a shot block and grab a sip of water.  When I got to the table, they didn't have the water ready, so after looking at a few tables, I said screw it, and kept running.  Shannon hadn't stopped for water, so I sprinted to catch up with her.  I ate my shot block and she did too.  Strawberry is my favorite.  We were getting close to mile 5, and I knew my family and Shannon's husband would be there, so that kept my momentum going.  Here's the sign my hubby held most of the time:
Which caused this girl to photo bomb MY photo opp:
I may or may not have yelled, "Not you!!! He's not taking the picture of you!!!"  Oh well... It was MY photo opp!  But my brother did manage to capture this one:
And I was still happy, regardless.

I knew we would see them again at mile 6.5, so that made the next mile and a half fly by.  Seriously, I don't even remember that part of the course at all.  I told Rocky (hubs) when to anticipate us at each spot, but we must have been faster than they thought, because as we were approaching the spot, they were running up to hold the signs and cheer for us!
I knew after this, I wouldn't see them until the end.  So I tried to find other things to focus on to keep going.  I was HALF WAY through my first half marathon!!  Half way!  I was doing this!  Who am I?  Who is this person that has taken over my body and is doing things that I never imagined I could dream of doing?!  Around mile 6.5 I grabbed some Gatorade at the water station.  I wore more of it than I drank.

We went up a little bitty hill right before mile 8.  There were signs staked along the course, and the one at the hill said, "Relax, it's just a hill! (A very small hill)"  That made me laugh.  You could hear the people behind us complaining about the hill when it came into view.  We got to mile 8.  I knew I was going to be fine until then.  I had ran 8.5 in training.  Anything beyond that was unknown to me.  We saw a little girl with a sign that said something like, "My mom made me get up at 4:00 this morning and all I want is BOJANGLES!"  A guy had one that said, "Sure this was a good idea months ago" and a few others, including, "Toenails are for sissies!" 

Somewhere along the way, I felt like I could use a good stretch for my legs, but knew I wasn't going to stop.  I don't know what gave me the idea, but I brought my knees up, kind of like high knees, while continuing to run.  I realized how stiff my knees were.  This REALLY helped, so I did it about every half mile after this.  Oh, I forgot to mention, Shannon and I have both had arm tingling/numbness during our long runs before.  I think it's lack of circulation, because of all of the blood pumping to our legs, but I'm no doctor, and it's just a theory.  So, we make it a point to shake out our arms and wiggle our fingers every so often.  Shannon had a really good idea a while back to start doing that every time we got a cheer from our Nike app.  It really helps.  So, I started wiggling my arms and doing my knees when I got cheers. 

I took 2 more shot blocks, 1 strawberry and 1 margarita (it adds sodium to your body), I think somewhere around mile 8.  I can't remember.  I do remember, at mile 8, we saw our pacer's balloons- which explains why I couldn't see them ahead of us anymore.  That made me feel better, because I thought we had dropped too far back.  Then, Shannon said, (and we were exactly at mile 8... remember the dream from above?!) "It looks like our pacer tuckered out!"  Too crazy!!!!  I didn't know what kind of omen that was! 

We got to mile 9 and this part of the course was on the highway.  Of course, they couldn't stop ALL of the traffic on the highway, so the runners had one lane to run in.  This was my least favorite part of the run.  There weren't any spectators cheering us on.  A few cars beeped their horns, but most of them zoomed by us, making it seem like I was moving at a snail's pace.  I felt Shannon pulling away from me, but I was determined to keep up with her.  I just kept going.  I had to get a fresh piece of gum (I can't run without gum) around this point because mine was mushy.  Thank goodness I had extra in my SPI belt.  I ended up getting Gatorade at 2 of the water stops and water at 1.  I don't remember after the first one where I got them.  

We were almost at mile 10 and there was another dj.  There may have been others in there somewhere, but I don't remember.  I knew once I made it to mile 10, I could finish.  It was only 3.1 miles left.  That's a 5k.  I've done plenty of those.  Somewhere along the way, Shannon pointed out a guy with a sign that said, "My hot wife runs half marathons and I just sit here and drink beer."  So funny!  Another one that I really liked was a group around one of the dj's that had a sign saying, "Not everyone can be heroes, someone has to sit on the side and cheer for you!" 

After mile 10, I felt myself wanting to be done.  There were a few times that I felt like Shannon might pull away.  I had read something before the run that said, "When your legs get tired, run with your heart!"  I kept telling myself this.  I would literally tilt my head back a little, straighten my posture and keep running.  This mantra kept me going through the entire end of the run.  We passed one girl with a shirt that said, "We don't chase our dreams, we run them down and catch them!"  I really liked that.  Another sign that I had seen along the way was a series of 3 that said, "That voice in your head... That says you can't... Is a LIAR!"  Then, around mile 10.5 or so, I saw, "Ask yourself if you can give more... The answer is usually YES!"  These were so motivational and encouraging.  So much of my doubt was purely mental and these kept my thinking right.  I had to ban all negative thoughts from my mind while I was running.  I also had a ton of pent up emotions leading up to the run.  I thought I would cry during the race, and I did get teary a few times, but I made myself focus on the positive and not lose control, so that it wouldn't affect my run. 

 Around mile 11 or so, we came across this woman that was singing out loud.  Shannon told her that she loved her singing, especially since her music went out around mile 1.  So, the woman started singing "We Are the Champions" and we joined in, along with several others around us.  We sang this until we made our turn onto our last straight stretch that led up to the finish line.  It was awesome!

I hit mile 12.  One mile left!!!  I was actually doing this!  I kept trying to decide when I was going to push it and run all out through the end.  Because I was waiting for 12.25 and 12.5, I guess, this was the longest mile for me.  We grabbed our DIVA gear- boas and tiaras- at around 12.5 and it was on from there!  I remember running past a few people getting near the chute, and they were just standing there with long looks on their faces, watching us run by.  I had been cheering at everyone I saw on the sides from mile 12 on, so I yelled at them, "We just ran 13 miles, cheer for us!!!"  We turned onto the road that the finish was on, and we broke out into a full on sprint.  People were cheering, music was playing!  I spotted our families cheering for us! 

Shannon is faster than me, and I know my picture doesn't look like I was going very fast, but we were moving!!!  We crossed the finish line and were given our medals by a shirtless fireman.
Then we were given roses.
And to complete our Diva treatment, we got champagne!  They really know how to treat a girl!
I was in shock!  It took a while to hit me that we had actually just ran a half marathon.  I saw the time as I crossed the finish, but I wanted to know MY CHIP time... and here it is:

We kicked that goal in the FACE!!!!  Well, only by a few minutes, but we freaking did it!  We ran a half marathon AND beat our goal time! 

Out of all of the races that I've ran, I'd never gotten a medal... until now!
I'm sooo proud of that thing!

We even got to see Ali Vincent as she was headed to the finish line!

I really thought I would be sobbing at the finish line.  I didn't.  I think I was still overwhelmed.  The whole thing felt almost like an out-of-body experience.  Like it wasn't me running.  Like I was watching someone else do it.  I didn't even feel like me.  I don't think I'm that old me any more! 

When we got to the room, I showered and put my race shirt on.  I looked in the mirror and got ready to criticize how the shirt fit on me.  This is when I got emotional.  As I was getting ready to see how "fat" I looked, I looked at person that had just ran a half marathon.  I was PROUD!  Who cared how I looked?!  I just did something I didn't think I would or could EVER do!!!  I realized acceptance in this moment.  So I cried a little more.

Let me take a second to mention all of the support that I got.  My facebook, instagram, Nike app and text messages BLEW UP with support from family, friends and MLFC girls- people I've never even met in real life, but that cheered me along the way.  I was truly overwhelmed by the outpouring of encouragement that I got.  I wasn't able to keep up with it all! 

Overall, this experience was PERFECT.  I couldn't have asked for anything better.  The weather ended up being great.  The crowd and support was great.  I just hope that all of my future races go so well. 

- My half was awesome!  
- I over-prepared, but at least I was ready for just about anything
- I carb loaded and it was great
- I began hydrating several days before the race
- Signs, spectators cheering and music help a lot
- Get excited, get into it.  It gets the crowd into it and makes the experience enjoyable.
- Our goal was to finish in 2:30:00.  My chip time was 2:27:56!!!!!
- Yeah, I rocked that shit!

- Half marathons are awesome.  You can do so much more than you give yourself credit for.
- Signs are motivational and encouraging.  Have your people hold them up!
- "They" say don't do anything different on the day of the race.  "They" are right.  I used body glide between my toes (in case of rain, so they wouldn't rub and get blisters)... well, I'd never used it on my feet before, and I ended up with a nasty blister on my second toe
- Stretch your knees out during the run- at least, I need to.  It really helped.
- Carry extra gum
- SPI belts rock my socks

- Try not to stress too much, especially over the things that are beyond your control.  It does no good.
- Get there a little earlier than you think you need to be there. 
- You are good enough.  Even if you're a work in progress and are not at your goal, accept where you are.  You have worked hard to get here.  Enjoy the ride. 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

I'm terrified!

Some days I have nothing to write about.  Other days, I want to write 5 different posts to get everything out.  Today, I feel like I could write about a lot of different things, but I’ll stick to this one. 

First things first, though… we did the Color Me Rad 5k this weekend and it was AWESOME!!!  Look for a recap soon.


Second, Shannon, hubs and I signed up for the Warrior Dash on June 1!!!  Eek!!! Here are Shannon’s thoughts on it:


And while she’s terrified about that… here’s what I’m excited and terrified about:


Yep, that’s our half marathon we’re running in.  On April 28!!!  And yesterday was the first day of April!  So yeah, I’m having a minor major freak out about it! I don’t know why.  Well, yes, I do.  I’ve been training.  Some.  But not enough.  I’ve ran my farthest of 8 miles, but that was a few weeks ago.  My training hasn’t been consistent enough.  Yesterday I ran 2 with the hubs, just to get a few miles in.  He hasn’t ran in a while, so he wanted to do a short, easy distance.  2 miles, sure!  Easy enough.  Wrong!  I struggled with my pace and my shins killed me after 1 mile.  So I know I’ve got a lot of work to do in, now, 26 days.  I can do this though.  I’ve just got to get my head right.  I’ve got to get determined.  I’ve got to stick with it.  No excuses.  If it’s too cold, the treadmill will be my frienemy BFF.  I promise, I will quit calling her the dreadmill.   At least to her face.  I’m also worried about what I’m going to wear… hey, it was right for me to sign up for a Diva run!  But seriously, it’s at the beach, at the end of April.  I usually wear capris.  My thighs rub together.  But what if I get hot?  I don’t run in shorts. You see how my thought process goes?!  And that’s just about my clothes!  Then where am I going to put everything?!  I’ll have my phone and/or ipod (we’ll get to that in a second) and I need my shot blocks!  Speaking of my phone… I don’t think the battery will last.  Do I carry the ipod for my music?  What about timing my run with my Nike app?  I don’t want to lose my freaking half marathon miles from my Nike run log.  Aghh!!!

As you can see, I’m stressing over things that I shouldn’t even worry about, and about things that are probably a little more important.  But, I’m just going to breathe… and run!  Any advice any half runners want to give is more than welcome.  Until next time, I’m working towards that 13.1 sticker!


Thursday, March 28, 2013

So What Weds...err... Thursday?!

Okay, so I had a blog post of my own to add today, in addition to the vlog linkup.  I know, two in one day?!  Get outta town!  But that didn't happen (you'll see why), so I decided to do Shannon's So What! Wednesday linkup.  So what!?

So What Wednesday  
So WHAT if...
  • I had a blog post about my Crossfire recap typed up on my work computer in a word document and forgot to save it to my drafts to post tonight once I got home
  • Today is Thursday and I'm doing So What Wednesday... see above
  • I got $41.08 in gas today?!  The pump wouldn't stop on an even number after several attemps, and... Ain't nobody got time fo dat!
  •  My muscles are sore... that's a good thing, right?  Bring on the workouts
  • Today is Thursday, because I'm OFF tomorrow!!!
  • Hubby is working nights this week and next... Next week is his LAST WEEK on second shift!  Yay for him and his new job!!!
  • If my washing machine is loud enough to wake the dead?!  At least the clothes are getting washed!
  • My scale isn't moving- my clothes are fitting better and I got a ton of compliments tonight
  • My face was shiny and oily today- I'm getting new makeup tomorrow!!!  Holla!
  • We're running the Color Me Rad 5k on Saturday... wait!  That's a pretty big deal!

She's a Little Bit Country

Well here ya go!  You get to hear my southern drawl in all of it's glory!  Check out Trista's Accent Vlog Linkup to join in on the fun!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Linkup, Linkup, Everybody Linkup

Well boys and girls... Here's my very first linkup!  Brought to you from the wonderful Holly and Jake


1. If calories didn't count, I would eat... something sweet and chocolaty every day.  I’m a sucker for sweets.  Then I’d probably finish it off with something salty.  Do you see a pattern here?

2. On my Prom night.... I was crowned prom queen!  Best night ever!  Totally didn’t expect that.  And it was nice to see the looks on the preppy girls’ faces when I got it!

3. When I go to the store, I always buy... salad.  We go through that stuff fast!

4. Family functions typically... remind me that I’m not as crazy as I sometimes think I am. 

5. I think my blog readers... are freaking awesome for reading my ramblings. 

6. I'd much rather be..... a stay-at-home mommy.  But if I had to pick something to make money, I’d rather be in the health and fitness industry.

7. I have an obsession with.... being in comfy clothes.  Now, I’m all about getting dressed up and looking nice… but I’d still much rather be in my bummy, comfortable clothes.  With no flip flops, or no shoes at all!

8. My work friends.... are pretty cool.  I’ve only been here 8 months, so the jury is still out on a few!  Haha!

9. When I created my Facebook account.... I was anti-facebook and pro-myspace.  A friend convinced me that I just had to have facebook. 

10. My least favorite word is... Oh gosh... do I have to?!  I can’t believe I’m even going to write it here…. C……u….. n…..t.  Yuck!!! Just yuck.

11. I really don't remember.... Who am I kidding?!  I remember everything.  I’m like a freaking elephant!  Except for when it comes to trying to remember what I did yesterday, or what I came into a room for.

12. Justin Bieber.... has one song that I like (Boyfriend) and I could really do without the rest.

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Monday, March 25, 2013

I will do anything for weight loss... But I. WON'T. do. THAT!!!

Yep, as bad as I want to lose weight, there are a few things that I just won’t do.  Not everyone will agree with me.  And that’s fine.  These are my own opinions and this is just how I do it.  Throughout my weight loss journey, I’ve learned a lot of things, and most of this comes from that. 

1.       I will NOT cut out any food group from my diet.  I believe that you need some of everything- yes everything- fats, carbs, all of it, for your body.  Now that being said, I have reduced carbs in the past, I try to only have healthier fats, and I’ve severely cut the junk foods down.  I do not believe in diets that claim you don’t need certain things (ie.  Atkins, South Beach, etc.)

2.       I will NOT starve myself.  You need to eat in order to lose weight.  Sounds like an oxymoron (who you callin moron?!) doesn’t it?  Well, I believe that depriving your body of food is kind of moronic!  Your body needs food to turn it into fuel to work and do what it is supposed to do.  Along with this, I will not use shake “supplements” or bar “supplements” or anything of the sort to replace meals.  I take my vitamins and supplements, and I drink protein shakes and eat protein bars, but these do not take place of my meals.  Gotta get enough calories in.

3.       I will NOT eat food that I don’t like.  I was sitting in the break room at work the other day, eating my lunch when another person came in and started eating.  She said, “Ugh, this food is gross!  But it’s okay, because I need to lose about 20 pounds.”  It doesn’t have to be like that.  Sure, I’ve bought frozen meals (that I stay away from now) that were nasty, and I didn’t have anything else to eat that day, so I ate it anyway.  But I don’t bring food that I know I don’t like just to lose weight.  You can eat healthy and yummy at the same time.  Shocker, I know!  Find healthy ways to prepare your favorite foods.  If you don’t like the foods, you’re not going to stick with it.

4.       I will NOT diet.  This goes along with what I just said.  If you don’t like it or are depriving yourself, you won’t stick with it.  The changes I’m making need to stick around, so I’m not going on a diet that I will quit once I reach a goal.  That only means that the weight comes back.  Rocky and I made lifestyle changes years ago and we eat according to that. 

5.       I will NOT have an expiration date.  I had dinner with my dad the other day and he said, “So what have you been up to?”  I told him, “Working and working out… that’s all I have time for.”  To which, he replied, “Oh, getting ready for summer, huh?”  I told him, “Nope.  Getting ready for life.”  Now, it’s great to set goals and deadlines for yourself to keep yourself accountable.  But don’t stop after that.  If you stop, you go right back to where you were and have to start all over again when your next event, or next spring, or next whatever comes up.  I want to look good on a random Wednesday in February, not just for a certain time period or season. 

6.       I will NOT reward/sabotage myself with food.  I lost a lot of weight.  Then gained most of it back.  And now I’m losing it again.  When I gained it back, I had just taken a new job.  Everyone went out to eat for lunch ALL the time.  I had worked for over a year to get where I was.  I had worked hard.  I deserved a cheat meal.  I deserved to be able to have some of the foods I had gone without.  Yeah, and because I deserved so many cheat meals, I deserved to gain the weight back.  And that’s what happened.  Now, I work those meals into my plan.  I know if I’m going to have a cheat meal, I need to prepare for it before, and work for it after.  That may mean eating a lower calorie lunch, and getting an extra workout in.  But I’m not giving up all of my hard work this time. 

7.       I will NOT take a “magic” pill to lose weight.  Been there, tried that.  Didn’t work.  There are so many out there in the market.  You know why?  Because none of them work!  If they worked, people would catch on to it, and the one that worked would put the rest out of business.  It’s all marketing.  Quit putting crap in your body.  There’s no telling what long term side effects those things are going to cause.  Here’s what works:  A healthy diet and exercising regularly.  That’s it.  Those two things.  Period.

8.       I will NOT let anything stop me.  Working out is hard.  If it were easy, it wouldn’t be called work.  Pretty clever, huh?  Yeah, I read that somewhere.  But it’s true.  I have to sweat.  I have to make sacrifices.  I have to give up other things.  I have to rearrange my schedule.  I have to put some things on the back burner.  But it is worth it.  And it’s a mind game.  Get determined.  Don’t let anyone or anything stop you.  Make up your mind, and don’t accept anything less than your goal. 

And in honor of weight loss, here’s a little something something that I took this morning:


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Girl Behind the Blog

Here's a few things you may or may not have known about me:

1.       I hate mustard.  And pickles.  And sneezing.  And all or nothing people when it comes to heat and air in the car- you have controls and options for a reason!

2.       I wish I could sing.  I seriously suck at it.  But hey, you can’t be good at everything. 

3.       I’m easily persuaded.  And I don’t like the fact, but it’s the truth.

4.       I am a picture whore.  Of myself and everyone and everything else!


5.       I’m allergic to cats.  But we have 2 labs and I love them!

6.       I have been with my husband since 2000 and we have been married since 2008.  I couldn’t imagine loving someone else more than I love him, even though he knows all my buttons to push and can send me over the edge in about .2 seconds. 


7.       I have a degree in Communication Studies, which is in no way related to or needed for my current job.  If I had it to do all over, I would do something health and fitness related.  Probably be some type of physical therapist.

8.       I’m a sucker for reality television.  Not that crappy Real Housewives stuff, but the stuff that comes on local channels.  Biggest Loser and Big Brother are among my favorites. 

9.       One of my pet peeves is when a big person tries to tell me how to lose weight.  Don’t get it twisted, if they are big and have lost weight, or are in the process of doing it, I’m all ears.  But for someone that is not currently where they need to be, or in the process of getting there, you’re wasting your breath.  I feel like that’s a hypocrite.  And by the way, I’ve done it before, I’m doing it again, and I appreciate your concern, but you are not doing it, so I’ll stick to my tried and true methods.  Thanks!

10.   Along with pet peeves, the toilet paper roll goes OVER!  End of story.

11.   My bestie and I have coined 2013 the “Year of the Badass!”  We’re doing a half marathon in April, the Warrior Dash in June, and who knows what else the year holds for us.  We’re pretty awesome!  ;)

12.   I spend way too much of my life playing online games.  Seriously.  Someone should probably have an intervention.  But wait, don’t!  I like them!

13.   I call my husband Rox.  His name is Rocky.  Yes, his real name is Rocky Dix.  Hey, don’t look at me!  I didn’t name him… his mother did!  We have vowed to be a little more careful with our future children’s names.  Ex. As much as I love the name Chase, I will not name my son Chase Dix.

14.   I don’t like to think that I am predictable.  I may be.  I understand that.  Most people are.  But I hate for someone to say, “I knew you were going to do that!”  I got my tongue pierced in 10th grade (took it out a long time ago) just for that reason- because it wasn’t something people expected me to do.

15.   I trust and love too easily, and I’m sensitive.  Which means I usually end up getting hurt very easily.  But I think it’s worth it.  I have deeper and more meaningful relationships by not keeping myself guarded or blocked off.

16.   I teach Zumba and I absolutely LOVE it!!!  I love to dance and I love music.  I really feel like I’m in my element when I’m teaching and I know it helps others.   
17.   I honor and admire my little brother so incredibly much.  He has proven himself over and over and I know he is destined for greatness.  I love him to pieces!



18.   I am NOT a morning person.  I swear I was born to live in Spain, where I sleep late, get a nap during the day and stay up until the wee hours of the morning.  Yeah, that would work so much better for me.

19.   I’m a horrible estimator at how long things will take- which usually makes me late.  I used to be early or at least on time for everything.  I’m not sure when this change happened.  It stresses me out, but I just can’t seem to figure it out.

20.   I desperately want to be a mother.  I feel that some people were just born for it.  I think I’m one of those people.  There is so much more that I want to do in life, but I feel like I will be satisfied and feel accomplished once I have children.  It’s the one thing that I would regret if I never did. (This is my niece and she is one of the most precious things in this world!)


Monday, March 11, 2013

What's New

A few things, I guess.  I’ve been busy lately, which obviously, means I don’t blog much.  I’ve found that I have the most blogging time on the weekends, but my past few weekends have been full too. 

Here’s a picture from my girl Beth’s (who has lost 30 POUNDS!!!!) birthday party last weekend! 

So I guess I’ll start with what’s new in my fitness world.  Last week, the hubby and I started Crossfire at the local YMCA.  Think Crossfit, except not in a Crossfit gym, without trx bands, pullup stations, that kind of thing.  We have a workout of the day, and it is very similar to Crossfit.  I’ve been DYING to try Crossfit, but haven’t been able to come up with the money to do more than just a sample class, and I didn’t want to get hooked on something and not be able to go.  This class is only on Mondays, for the month of March.  But I’m hoping it’s what I need to boost be past this plateau I’ve been stuck on. 

So, we went last week, and…. I LOVED IT!!!  We got such a great workout!!!! I can’t wait to go back tonight!  Last week, we did a fit test, to see where we start and have something to measure against by the end.  Then, we had 20 minutes to do 20 front squats, 20 pushups, 20 wall shots and 20 box jumps.  We had to do as many rounds as possible.  By round 3, I just knew I could only get one more round in before time was called.  Then, I finished round 4 and still had about 5-6 minutes left.  I started with the pushups, because I didn’t mind them that much.  Then I did my box jumps, because they were my favorite.  Then I did the wall shots, because they weren’t too bad.  I kept putting off the front squats because they made my wrists hurt, with the way we had to hold the bar.  I still had time left, so I started on those too!  I got about half way and they called out 1 minute left, and I busted those squats out!!!  I couldn’t believe I finished 5 sets!  I was sweating, and panting, and gargling my heart in my throat (any Jillian Michaels fans out there?)! 

Since we only meet once a week, they email a second workout for the week, so we get at least 2 workouts in.  The second one was 3 rounds of 20 weighted situps, 7 pullups, 30 one legged squats and .25 mi run, for time.  So, you have to do 3 rounds as quick as possible.  I dug deep (any Insanity fans out there?!) and busted that shiz out in 19 minutes and 51 seconds!!!  My goal was to get it done in less than 20 minutes!  Heck yes!!!  My friend Shannon came over and did it with me.  Then she puked when she left!  It’s intense, y’all!  But I need intense!  Got a plateau to bust through!

If nothing else, the workouts are toning my muscles!  I was soooo excited to see this badass arm pic I took this past week:

And here’s my favorite thing that is new.  I have been in the 160s for FOUR CONSECUTIVE days!!!  That has yet to happen this go round!!! So, maybe, just maybe, I’m making head way with that damn plateau!  Here’s my weight since January, just so you can see what I’ve been struggling with:

 So what am I doing differently?  Well, I was supposed to be tracking my calories with My Fitness Pal.  Yeah, that lasted about 4 days or so.  Then I ate out, I didn’t know how to track my meal, and it ended.  But, I already had a good idea of what and how much I was eating.  Well, by the end of last week, I decided to change it up just a little.  Rox (what I call the hubby) has been saying I’ve been eating too much.  I think I haven’t been eating enough.  He said, “Well you eat all the time, all day long, you don’t need that much food.  You don’t need to eat 6 times a day!”  I told him he was wrong.  Imagine that!  I will say that he has lost and kept of at least 55 pounds, so naturally he thinks he knows what to do.  Well, in the beginning, he didn’t do it so healthy.  He ran with trash bags on, he ate little to nothing.  Even now, it’s a struggle to keep him eating enough throughout the day to keep his metabolism up so that he doesn’t get so tired.  But through all that, he still thinks he’s right (MEN!).   So I think he believes he’s right in what he’s telling me.  And after 3 months of weighing between the same 4 pounds, back and forth, I almost thought so too (that stays between us though, never repeat it to him!).  So, at the end of last week, one day I was hungrier than normal, so I ate an additional snack.  And the next day, my weight was down.  I thought I may be on to something!  So, I did the same thing the next day.  And the next morning, my weight was down again!  Since that day, I’ve eaten a little more than I had normally been eating, and my weight has continued to go down, or at least be below 170!  Saturday night we went out for a birthday party, and I had a regular hamburger, fries and some beers.  My weight was still down on Sunday and this morning.  I really think I need to up my calories, and so far, it seems to be working.  I do some pretty intense workouts, and I think I need more fuel for my body.  Why in the world did I almost let the hubby convince me he was right?!  I knew better and I think I’m proving it!  I’ve been super stoked about my weight these past few days, and I’ve gotten a TON of compliments and people asking what I’m doing to lose the weight, how to start running, etc.  It means so much to me when I see that I am inspiring and encouraging other people.  That is one thing that I strive to do.  I like to know that I’m making a difference, not only for myself, but for others too.

Here’s Rox and me this weekend:

 And here’s a comparison from June 2012 and this past weekend:

Here’s our group celebrating:

And this is one of just me Saturday.  Rox got me this super cute Pink Rack Project shirt that he bought from Sassy Does when he was out of town last weekend.  This is a XL fitted tee (need the room for the “rack”) and it fits perfectly.  A portion of the proceeds support breast cancer research, and I’m a huge advocate!