It is that time of year again. You know the time where you are running around trying to get everything done, making everything jolly and bright while at the same time working, taking care of the house, working some more and also trying to be present for your loved ones.
Yeah, that time of year….. Oh wait, that really seems like all year long. Although December brings a whole new level of things that “must” get done. So with that said, I am going to challenge myself to spend 30 minutes a day doing something healthy for myself. I’ve never been one for running streaks and to be honest with as sore as my legs have been lately I know I won’t be doing one soon. This is why this challenge is just what I need.
That’s it. Can be more, but no less. Can be yoga, walking, biking. stretching, weight training, running, or combo of it all and even more. I need to claim these 30 minutes. Not just for my body but for my mind. 30 minutes to unplug, unwind and just focus on taking care of myself.
The beauty of this challenge is that I have taken some of my friends along for the ride. So we are going to keep ourselves honest. Plus they are all training for the NYC Half which I am so thankful that I didn’t get in which is a big indicator how happy I am to e giving myself a break from training for anything longer than a 5K.
We all need this. I have already realized how beneficial this has been for me mentally. There is no goal in trying to run further or faster, lift more weights, plank longer. The goal is just to take 30 minutes to do something physical.
Who else is up for the challenge? You know your worth it!
I have a confession to make….. The number on the scale still bothers me. I know it shouldn’t. I know I am more evolved. I know it is just a number, but…. But…. But….
The two sides of my brain fight this one out. I know that the number is NOT important. I know what is more important is overall health. I know that there are other much more important numbers, such as blood pressure (good), cholesterol (fair but in range) and all the other numbers I need to keep in check due to my hypopara. I also know the number on the scale does not affect my quality of life, change the way my loved ones feel about me, nor honestly change anything about my life. It doesn’t keep me from doing things. It doesn’t honestly affect my life in any way…. With the honest exception of that it does make running a little more challenging than it needs to be on my feet.
I’m not blowing smoke. I know all of these things. I know that the scale does not control my life. I know the scale does not change my life. I am a fairly confident person. The scale doesn’t keep me from doing anything and yet….
I can admit that it bothers me.
Now I am not saying that it bothers me enough to do a drastic life altering diet change. I also admit that while I have started to track my food. This is honestly based on the fact that I am trying to meet nutritional goals. Lean proteins. Less Carbohydrates. Meeting calcium and nutritional goals for overall health. My nutritionist pointed out that while weight is not our goal that by meeting my nutrional goals while also adding strength training and balanced exercise regime, the wight loss will be potential possible side effect. There is no calorie counting. There is what are the best calories to consume.
So why knowing all of this does the number on the scale still bother me? Can I blame society as much as I blame my non existent metabolism? I know things are slowly changing. Companies are using models based on “real” women. Disney just had a short with a bigger protagonist. People keep fighting back against body shaming…. Yet, these are the exceptions and not the norms because if they weren’t they wouldn’t make the news. Top “influencers” (still don’t get that one) are still using filters to get unattainable goals. Plus, I am of the age of barbie, I Dream of Jeanie, and grew up the “fat kid.” Not sure you can every fully get away from those forces.
Yet…… I try…….. not enough that I stopped stepping on the scale. That I don’t have a weight goal. That I wouldn’t love to wake up tomorrow and be 135 pounds again. Once again not enough to take the unhealthy (for me) drastic steps to reach these goals. Part of me would love to drop the 20 pounds. That being said, realistically I will be very happy if I drop 10 pounds which would still leave me in the overweight category but take my BMI out of the obesity category.
I’ve been trying to answer this question. To see where I am. What my body can do. What mentally I am prepared to do. I think I have the answer.
Am I ready to run a virtual NYC Marathon?
Am I ready to complete 26.2 miles for Sandy Hook Promise for a NYC Virtual Marathon?
Yes…. With in reason
I need to be smart. I need to be reasonable and most of all…… I need to check the ego.
This past Sunday, I went out with one agenda. Ok maybe 2. To plan my route which will consistent of “loops” from a local park. I am hoping to have people join me for parts of the “race” and thought this would be a great way to do it. There will be loops in the park going out to longer loop leaving park. This way some can come for shorter or longer distances. I went with no pace plan. No time frame. No nothing. Just the loops and to hit 13 miles.
I did it.
Not too shabby either
How you ask?
By not being an idiot. Ok, anymore of an idiot than thinking of finishing a marathon. I walked. I ran slowly. I walked. I stopped at my car at end of first loop. I stopped to rub feet. I refuled. I took my time. I had no… I need to be faster. I need to hit this pace. I should blah, blah, blah
I just did it
I did it knowing that I could do it. I did it knowing that I could do more. I did it knowing that my body has done this again. I did this with the thought never again….. but maybe I just mean a virtual. Most of all I did this knowing that honestly there will come a day that I can’t do this, but (blank) no, that day is not today. So I will do this.
It will be hard. My feet will hurt. My hands will swell. I will be tired. I most definitely will be sore. I will be slow. I will like every marathon question my wisdom, BUT I PLAN TO FINISH WHAT I SET OUT TO DO!
So the date is set, October 22.
The time is set…. Starting at 8:30
The pace is what it will be.
The reason is clear……… I am running for Sandy Hook Promise and the promise of a better day for our children.
Could be age. You know having to get up for the bathroom.
Could be damn Cpap machine that gurgles, hisses and is stuck on my head.
Could be the hypopara muscle aches and all the fun that goes with it.
Could be mind spinning and spinning.
Who knows. Sleep is a mysterious thing which is why I assume there are so many books about it. That being said, all this tiredness makes for an unmotivated not moving as much as I should be person.. All I know is that I am not alone in my struggle. The struggle is real and so many of us go through it.
i will be honest too…… Staying on track is hard. Staying motivated may be even harder. The why bother it never works devil is real. The does it really make a difference voice is loud. The does it even matter whispers are shouts. What is the point is the biggest struggle. Round and round and round it goes till you are paralysed into doing nothing.
No blogging to keep yourself honest.
No coming up with goals but finding so many excuses.
Now here me out……… Some of these “excuses” are vaild. Many of them are real making what feels like an impossible situation like climbing a mountain without gear. I often forget though…..
I can do hard things!
I have done hard things.
Now the question I have to seriously start asking though…….
Do I want to do them?
What is the benefit of doing them? What is the detriment of not doing them? And the absolute hardest question….. Why am I afraid of doing them? Of making a plan…… of sticking to it…. Of being willing to falter….. of doing something even if I am the only one who cares that I am doing it?
The truth boils down to….. Fear of failure. Fear of stating that something I strive for might be out of reach…. We don’t stop growing because we fail, we stop growing because we stop trying.
I, once again, might be ready to face reality and try. There are some truths to. I have medical condition that makes trying harder some days them others. I am a home baker. There will be snacks but I can adjust. I am a middle age woman with the metabolism of a dead person. I need to move more and make excuses. I need to at the very least try.
I need to eat healthier.
Goal # 2
I need to move in a more constent manner and come up with a plan.
Goal # 3
I need to make myself accountable. For me that will mean documenting it all. The struggles. The small (and hopefully) big victories and just be real that it isn’t always going to work. So I need to adjust and not give up.
While this morning, I did weigh myself and take measurements, weight is not the goal. More importantly, the numbers that I need to improve…. Cholesterol, calcium, kidney function and the rest will work itself out.
In trying to figure out. Trying to come up with a plan. Trying to put the pieces together when I always feel like one is missing. Trying… Trying… Trying……One day I might know until then, keep working on –
How to move forward….
How to get back and stay on track…. (Does anyone ever stay on track?).
How to reach goals that I have been putting off setting….. ( Because if you set a goal, then that means you have to make a plan. If you make a plan, then you need to be accountable for following that plan)
I realized something…….. Once again, I was putting myself in a holding pattern.
Hear me out……..
I realize that once again I’ve been living in fear. I’ve been waiting for the shoe to drop. Funny thing is once started to drop, I realized that while there is a lot that I have no control of that by pretending the future is now that I am missing the present.
When you have Hypoparathyroidism, you have to usually take boat loads of calcium, prescription forms of Vitamin D on top of other things. Anywho…. As I’ve mentioned before, this is hard on the body. Kidneys especially. I’ve had high levels of calcium in urine which is not good. I’ve had some things indicating that maybe this was heading where I didn’t want it to go. I’ve also been lucky not to have had kidney stones and other issues, but it was always there in back of my mind.
Get some results back and shows that my eGFR rate is dropping. 2 years after being Hypopara it was 73 (still in normal range) but enough that I worried about my kidney health which made me feel like I was being a hypochondriac. Guess I wasn’t because now 6 years in my eGFR has continued to drop 56 which is out of normal range and indicates that kidneys are not working properly otherwise known as CKD. As a side note, for a woman my age it should be in 90’s. So not great but not as bad as it could be!
Now the thing is doctors don’t seem overly concerned at this stage, but I am. You know, you only have one body thing. Also might be reason to switch to a nephrologist who doesn’t wait for things to get bad before thinking it’s a big deal. Anyway, these numbers while not great also were the wake up call that I needed to realize that…..
EVERYTHING IS NOT OUT OF MY HANDS!
Being overweight is not good for many things including kidney health. Now, there was a time when I could say that my extra weight wasn’t effecting my health and at the time that was true; but that is no longer the case.
My nutrition could be better. I’m not talking about nutrition to loose weight. I am talking about making sure that I am eating the right foods. Getting the right proteins, carbs, healthy fats.
There might come a day where I can’t do the things that I want, but I am not even close to being there now or in the near future!
so what to do….. what to do……
Well one and two go together. While I’ve met in the past with a functional nutritionist , this time I wanted to meet with someone who focused on kidney health. I found a Registered Dietitian with all the right credentials who among other things works with endocrine, kidney and weight loss issues. (All the boxes and then some checked).
I could (not easily) go on a diet to loose weight but if it is not the right diet for my health than loosing the weight means nothing. Last time I dropped a decent amount of weight it was between son 2 & 3. I did it with the South Beach Diet which is very much not the type of diet I should use now. My goal is not so much the weight loss but finding the right diet for kidneys and hypoparathyroidism. Loosing 20 pounds would be the bonus and one I am now actively working on.
My goal though is to change my numbers around as it’s early enough to do that and if I can’t turn them around, slow them the (beep) down!
So with all of that weighing on my mind, I’ve been acting like I am already at the point where I can’t run anymore. Now that’s just crazy talk…… Like Serious crazy talk……. Maybe…. Maybe…. Maybe….. one day, but not yet.
Now I know that just with Hypopara, my running has changed but I’ve been getting it done. I’ve been doing what I can but I’ve been holding back because I was waiting for what I don’t know. Kind of like when you put off cleaning out your closet because you just don’t want to deal with it. Then you realize that once you start tackling it, it’s not so bad.
So it’s not so bad!
Plus I’ve been training for my triathlon. I’m not trained trained. I feel like I never am anymore. What I am is trained enough to know that I will make it out of the water and still be able to bike and while not run, will be able to at least walk to the finish line.
oh did I mention that event is 12 days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It’s been a rough few weeks. The ups and downs have been real……
Mama is recovering from being in the hospital after her fall and blood clots. She has many doctors appointments in her future, but she if recovering at my sister’s in California. As a friend said, there are worst places to recover in. As an added bonus, she will have more time with her granddaughter and her new grandson. She is in good hands and is on the road to recovery even if the time it takes is longer than we would like. That being said, she is already baking cookies with granddaughter with help from other grandma.
So that is a huge stress relief and blessing.
Then we have also been dealing with family member who was battling Covid. Sadly the decision to place him in comfort care was the correct one and had the outcome everyone expected, but no one wanted. There is no positive to this story other than he is finally at peace and no longer suffering. Sometimes that is all there can be.
So with all of these stressors, it has been a lot.
Work = stress
Home = stress
Starting home baking business = stress
Life = stress
It was time to do something fun. Something stupid. Something just for me for no other reason than I wanted to do it….. And I did!
Months ago, I had signed up for a winter trail 5K. This event is just a silly fun event that also raises money for good cause.. The Squatchy Onesie Fest is just what it sounds like….. We ran in onesies! Now I will say that it was unseasonable warm which did make for a hotter run than it should be. The ground was muddy, icy, and fun to run all at the same time. I will also say the day after this event, we had a beautiful light snow which is how I initially envisioned this event when I signed up, but it was still perfect just the way it was.
It was just stupid hard fun that I didn’t think about and just enjoyed.
Just what I needed!
Case in point…
I will also say that every time I run the trails, I am reminded how much I really love running them and wish that I had more time to run them. I really need to do both more trails and more stupid just for fun events.
I was also reminded to not take everything so seriously. Just to let go. Have fun and not afraid to look stupid because in the end….. no one will remember your PR time, but they will remember your journey.
Let’s first start off with if you want a fun semi action comedy, Central Intelligence is funny. Maybe it’s because I like The Rock or maybe it’s because Kevin Hart is so funny, but it’s one of those movies if it’s on tv you watch it. Anywho…….
Right now I am waiting for my new running shoes to come and I am not running until they come. I haven’t really been paying attention to them and even though I kept saying that I needed to get a new pair, I never did. I also didn’t realize how far gone they were. I think not having actual races last year where I would pay better attention that I just let things slide.
As I said last post, I am rethinking my training anyway. Plugging through my 80/20 training book, but I am also thinking of non running training. Back in the day (and I mean 2015), I loved not just Crossfit but Cross training. I did Crossfit. I biked. I swam. I did Yoga. I worked with a Personal Trainer. I did group classes. Then I ran and then I ran and ran and ran and stopped doing anything else. So as I ease back into my running and training, I want to keep the balance that I used to have. I want to keep the balance for a few reasons.
“A woman my age” really needs to have balance.
Not that I am going to be as fast or am training for speed, but my best runs overall were when I was more diversified in my training.
My body could really do with the steady stretching of yoga
I miss having good arms and I’ve recently been told by one of my 3 year old students that I have “squishy arms.”
I actually like cross training when I think about it and admit it
So here we are, me trying to become a less rounded person by being more rounded. I have been using an app not on a regular basis, but plan to for cross training. They have a free version which is fabulous. Although I admit the free version constantly reminds you that they have a paid version. That being said they have a whole slew of workouts for everyone and every mood. From meditation to kickboxing to strength training to no equipment and the list goes on. Now in order for me to commit to it, today I decided to buy the year subscription. Honestly for thirty bucks it is still a steal. That used to be my monthly gym fee.
So today I was doing a weight training and a Tabata workout. I had everything here to make it an intense workout. As I was beginning the workout and the instructor was talking about what weights to use. I was ready to grab the bigger weights that we have. I was reliving my Golden Jet moments when I used to be able to bench press. I’m not sure if I have my training journals from back in the day, but I know my deadlift and chest press totals were impressive. So today, I was thinking go for the big weights.
Luckily I remembered that he landed face first when trying to live his glory days. So I dialed it down a notch or two. Guess what? I had a kick ass workout at the intensity that I should be out. So here is to working on a new Golden Jet flip but one that I am actually in a position to land safely.
Remember as a kid, you did things just to do them. Remember that feeling of just doing nothing and being content with it. Remember when you were younger going out with your friends for no reason with no destination, but just to drive and listen to music. Remember the days where you didn’t feel like you needed a purpose, destination, or challenge?
Today my hubby and I took a drive to a Garden Center to pick up a tree to replace one that didn’t survive the harsh winter. As we were driving, I was looking at the well manicured lawns, the not so well manicured lawns, and the “natural lawns.” Personally I enjoy the more natural looking yards from the “well manicured” pristine lawns. The well manicured to me are just fighting for perfection that was never meant to be nor natural…… Plus they are a lot of work. Although I have a mix of a well manicured and natural looking gardens and it is definitely not less work
Anywho…… What do these things have in common.
They are all about control.
When we were younger, we just let things take their course. Whatever happened happened. Then as we grew up had responsibilities , we needed to start taking control. We had to take control of schedules, budgets, other people, on and on the list went. Everything needed to be managed. Everything needed to be planned. We needed goals. We needed challenges. Everything was about finding our purpose. Finding our bliss. Even that became something to plan. Sometimes we found it. Sometimes we didn’t, but in the search we realized that sometimes it’s ok not to have a plan.
Some of my fondest memories from when I was younger was just hanging out with my friends. Times when we weren’t doing anything. Just hanging out on the beach. Going for a drive/walk. It wasn’t about reaching a destination, but about just the moment.
Since I started running, I’ve always been goal oriented even when trying not to be. Goals to hit a certain pace, distance, event, miles. Even when I was regularly practicing yoga it became about challenging myself to practice for a certain number of days or attain a certain pose. It wasn’t about just being.
I am trying to learn how to just be. To allow my running to be about nothing more nothing less than just about the running. No challenges. No paces. No distances.
Since new CDC guidelines I have met two friends for two different runs/walks. One friend we just walked and talked. One friend does the Jeff Galloway run/walk program, so we did that. Both of these started with much needed hugs as I haven’t seen either of them for a long time. (Sidebar – it felt really great to hug them). Anyway, I enjoyed both of these get togethers tremendously.
I always say that I need a purpose/challenge to get me out the door running. I want my purpose for now simply to be about the running. The meeting up with friends again. Friends who if I can run their pace, I will run their pace. Friends who might need to slow down to run my pace. Running by myself, just because I want to go for a run not because I need to go for a run.
Doesn’t that sound wrong? Ha! We are so trained that we always need to be working on something, to be improving something, to be striving for something that somehow the thought of just saying that I am not actively working, training, or planning anything seems like I am doing something wrong when for me it seems like I am doing something right and that is enough.
I used to want to be a badass. I used to want it. Train for it. I used to want to push myself to and past my limits. There were no limits. There was only not working hard enough. Not pushing hard enough.
To Train hard
To be at “the top of my game.”
Now……. Let me be clear……… There is NOTHING wrong with that mentality. I get it. I’ve been there. I might get there again. Who knows. I know though…… I am not nor have I been there in a long time. I’ve been swaying in the breeze…. Ever so gently just seeing where I might land.
To be honest, I am not sure where I am right now. I just know it is not the balls to the wall give it all you got place right now. I have no desire to train hard. Most days I might not even have any desire to train. There is no wake up at the crack of dawn to squeeze a run in. There is no going out at night to make sure to hit my miles.
There is just going with the flow. I know that there are many reasons for this change besides being hypopara which may have been the catalyst for change, but change is inevitable anyway. I just don’t have the same drive. I don’t have the same commitment. I don’t have my running crew as we all are in different places. We trained together. We ran together. We raced together. Most of all running was about more than running.
So as with life, things change. People move. Peoples schedules change. Goals change…..
What many runners know too is that without in person events, it just isn’t the same. I often think to when I was growing up our family Minister was a runner. Something he picked up in the service. He went out for runs just to run. This was well before running became mainstream. I thought I had that mindset, but I realize that while I do love running I can’t wait to be at a starting line again. That being said, I am also not in a rush because I want to also do it safely. The thought of a major event (if any are even coming) brings on a bit of a panic attack. Like a serious one…… Not the OMG, she’s having a panic attack meme. Anyone else???? This pandemic has changed many of us in what we once never gave a second thought to, we will think long and hard about before diving in.
I have signed up for a trail race in October. While I don’t have time to train on trails like I used to this race is a friends favorite. Plus they required a waiver of proof of vaccination. I liked that. I respect that and things like that will go a long way to getting us back to normal even if it is a new normal.
To most “March Madness” means something to do with College Basketball. I know it’s some type of big College tournament and there are brackets to be filled, but I couldn’t tell you what colleges are in it except this year since Rutgers was in it for the first time. I only know that because my Governor talked about it (a lot). Don’t ask me why they haven’t participated before because I couldn’t tell you. Being as I don’t follow basketball (or really any sports for that matter) March Madness and all the madness really means nothing to me.
Sorry not sorry.
For me though, I have taken on my own March Madness. I participated as part of a team for Dylan’s Wings of Change. Part of a Kilter challenge of Miles for Meaning. The winning team won $25,000 for their charity. We actually had 3 teams. Team 1 (not my team) crushed it. Like seriously crushed it. While not on the actual winning team, I was still lucky enough to be part of the overall team and it was amazing support system to push to keep moving and getting the miles in. These winnings will go a long way to helping their organization share their programs.
Going into this challenge, I had hoped to do 100 miles for the month. Considering that January and February that I had only done 50 miles, this was a leap for me. I would have to go back to look at stats to see the last time that I hit 100 miles running. I might have to go back a long time. Now I will say that not ever mile was a running mile, but most were. I have also changed the way I look at my running.
We have all heard it…….. We all know the truth of it……. We roll our eyes at it…….. but we can’t deny it.
Consistency is key.
It is not what we do once, but what we do over and over and over again. It’s not about showing up with your running shoes once, but time after time. Week after week. Run after run. We know the truth of it, yet somehow we ignore it or pretend otherwise. Yes, you can go out and have a great run every now and then, but if you want that feeling more frequently than you have to show up frequently.
I have taken a step in the right direction with showing up this last month. Showing up on days that I might not have wanted to show up. Doing what I needed to do in order to hit my target goal for the month. Showing up the last day of the month for 7 miles…… 1 mile warm-up walking. 5 miles running. Then a mile cool-down. I did this because I needed each of these miles to hit my target.
This past month and following the training plan for the NYC Half have reminded me that I need to be more consistent. I need to continue to show up. Show up for myself. Show up because as I once again become more consistent in my running that I am becoming a stronger runner. I am once again learning how to control the run and not let the run control me. Consistency is also giving me the confidence in my running and myself.
Showing up is never easy. Some days it is harder than others. Some days we can find every reason not do show up. Some days these reasons are valid and some days they are just excuses. When you are doing what you love though, you look for not excuses to check out but ways to show up. I want to go back to the days where I did the later. Days where I would go out for a run at 8:00 at night because I needed to get my run in. Days where I just showed up to run…. by myself….. with a group….. on the trails….. on the road….. Anywhere and everywhere.
I recently had a Facebook memory where I said that I was heading out for “12 easy miles with friends.” So many things struck me with that…..EASY! HA!!! Although, before I ever even thought of running a half marathon that I was meeting friends just to run to run. Running long distances for no other reason except to run them. I still remember a friend on one of these runs asking me if I was doing a certain race and then saying “if you can run 12, you can easily run a half.” So I did.
Somehow in all the training and all the goals, I forgot to run just to run. Run without an end in site. Now don’t get me wrong….. All of these goals have been great. They have kept me motivated and moving but……. but……. but……. If you only keep doing something because of the end goal, eventually it becomes a job and you can’t wait to get to the end.
So it seems silly after saying that to say that I am challenging myself with a new goal, but I am. For the month of April (my birthday month), I want to run/walk at least one mile every day. I would actually like to become a more consistent runner and do 3 solid runs a week of at least 5 miles. I remember when 5 miles used to be my normal run and I think that I have been consistent enough where that is where I am now as long as I keep going.
When I first started, I needed to push myself to move. I needed to push myself to put in the work. This is not a fake it till you feel it moment because I am already feeling it. This is keep up the good work and don’t give up moment.