My Intention is to live a healthy, active lifestyle.

Thank you for your support.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Numbers Don't Lie!

I am not very happy right now. I just weighed myself and I’ve gained four pounds! I guess I shouldn’t complain. It could be worst. I also shouldn’t be surprised since I’ve gone over my calorie goal for the day a few times this past two weeks. Translation: Sheila, you've been eating too much and not burning enough calories! Anyhow, I am grateful for the courage to face the truth. The old me would have been in denial and stayed off the scale. I also have a new tool – a fat loss monitor. My focus for 2013 — building muscle and losing fat!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Workout Plan Revisited

I’ve been thinking and revising my workout plan for next month for a while now. Truthfully, I’m just starting to feel comfortable with the machines I’ve been using. I feel I have a pretty good handle on my form. Anyhow, instead of changing things too much I decided to switch to full body workouts. I will be combining Workouts A and B. I will continue doing 30-minute cardio interval training. I think this will help me burn the amount of calories I need to get to my goal weight and body fat loss goal. Now that I’m looking back on this year, I know I really need to add more intensity to my workouts if I truly want to reach my goal.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

More Weights and More Reps

It’s time for me to switch my strength training routine. Yesterday’s workout was a breeze and I barely broke a sweat. So, I was thinking do I just add more weight or do I increase my reps. I have been adding more weight over the past six weeks. My cousin thinks I should increase reps. I’ve been doing some reading this morning and I think I need to switch up my routine period. So, I’m in search of a new workout plan. I’m kind of nervous because I just figured out these machines and it’s time to move on. If I am truly serious about meeting my fitness goals, it appears I will have to stay out of my comfort zone. So, off I go to see what I can find.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Squats Challenge Update

Quick update on the squat challenge: Today I did 70 squats. This is a personal best. I’ve never been about to do 70 straight squats. The down side is that my left knee and right ankle are starting to give me a little trouble so I need to pay better attention to my form.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

I Hate Squats!

I really hate squats. I'm not sure why. They're supposed to be really good for you. So, if I hate squats so much, why did I sign up for this Holiday Squat-a-Thon???

Thursday, November 22, 2012

21-Day Challenge Wrap Up

Yesterday was the last day of the challenge. I exercised 18 out of 21 days. Not bad. One of the three days it was a conscious choice. The other two days I was just plain lazy. My area of opportunity continues to be lack of sleep. I really need to work on my sleep schedule. I’m even thinking about doing this again and challenging myself to go to bed at a certain time. I may sign up again on December 1. We’ll see. What did I learn? I learned that 45 minutes isn’t as long as I thought. In fact, most of my workouts were at least an hour long. Yesterday I also noticed that I am beginning to feel changes in my body. I'm usually wiped out. I felt more energetic after my workout yesterday. I do think this has more to do with my food plan rather than the exercise. I have to keep in mind how much these two work in conjunction. This is good because now my focus is on tweaking my food plan. I still need to have a conversation with my OA sponsor but I need to have a clear plan in mind. I’ve been reading and researching. My plan is to have it in place by December 1.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Foam Roller

Doing some research on lifting today and started reading about the importance of warm up and recovery. Apparently using a foam roller is a good way to do this. I purchased a foam roller a couple of years ago but don't use it on a regular basis. I think it's time to pull it out. Going to use it before and after the gym today.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Workout A

So I tried workout A yesterday.  It is not as easy as it looks on paper.  Going from two sets to three was challenging even though I'm doing fewer reps.  Yesterday I also decided to do my cardio after lifting.  Not sure if it's going to make a difference but I wasn't able to doing another five or ten minute cool down.  Going to have to work on that. 

The best part of my workout was chillin' in the sauna.  I've done this for the last few workouts.  It's a nice time to sit and meditate.  I think others are catching on because there were two other women in there.  I was surprised.  I'm usually in there alone. 

I also noticed that the gym is starting to get a bit crowded. Considering the size of the gym, I thought there would be no way I'd ever have to wait for a machine. Now that it's getting cold, I'm sure this is driving more people indoors.  The classes were even crowded.

Speaking of classes, I purchased some padded shorts so I can start taking spin classes.  Going to check them out today to see how they feel. 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Workout Routine

Okay, here’s my workout routine for the next two weeks.  I borrowed it from A Workout Routine

Workout A

1.    Squats
3 sets of 8-10 reps.
2 minutes rest between sets.

2.    Bench Press
3 sets of 8-10 reps.
2 minutes rest between sets.

3.    Rows
3 sets of 8-10 reps.
2 minutes rest between sets.

4.    Triceps Press Downs
1 set of 10-12 reps.

5.    Calf Raises
1-2 sets of 10-12 reps.
1 minute rest between sets.

Workout B

1.    Deadlifts
3 sets of 8-10 reps.
2 minutes rest between sets.

2.    Pull-Ups (or Lat Pull-Downs)
3 sets of 8-10 reps.
2 minutes rest between sets.

3.    Overhead Shoulder Press
3 sets of 8-10 reps.
2 minutes rest between sets.

4.    Biceps Curls
1 set of 10-12 reps.

5.    Abs
1-2 sets of 10-12 reps.
1 minute rest between sets.


Basically, I’m going to be doing three full-body workouts a week.  I’m also going to start taking spinning and/or aqua fit on the remaining days.  I want to make sure I'm working out at least five days a week.  This program also recommends one full rest day.  This will probably be on Tuesdays because that’s my busiest day.  
More than my workout routine I know my food plan is crucial.  So for the next four weeks I will be alternating between the above workouts.  For example, Week 1 – ABA, Week 2 – BAB, Week 3 -- ABA, Week 4 – BAB.   After weight training, I will do 30 minutes interval training on the Elliptical or Bike.  Let’s do this!

P.S.  It looks like I’m putting my 5K training on the back burner for a while.  I think I’m going to scratch the MLK Run and shoot for the Color Run in the spring.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Abs are Made in the Kitchen, not the Gym

So I have been working out with cardio and weights for about two weeks.  I really want to maximize my workouts for results.  I do think the interval cardio training is going to help.  Last night I was doing some reading about lifting for weight loss.  I started coming across all these comments about abs being made in the kitchen, not the gym.  I’ve heard this many times before.  I have a general idea of what it means but decided I’m going to do some further research on it so I can revise my food plan.  I want to have a good idea of what I plan to do because discussing it with my OA sponsor.  I want this to be a lifestyle change, not a diet. 

During the past two weeks, I am aware that I need to focus on core and upper body strength.  I also want to get rid of this belly fat.  I know six pack abs are not realistic.  I’ve had three abdominal surgeries so I know those muscles are pretty shot but I can work on getting rid belly fat.  No excuses!


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

21-Day Challenge – Workout #12

21-Day Challenge – Workout #12

Today workout was hard! I decided to do an interval workout on the stationary bike today.  It was challenging! As challenging as it was, I was very surprised I didn’t burn as many calories as I thought I would.  I definitely got a good cardio workout.  I’m going to give it a shot on the Elliptical tomorrow.  I also did an upper body workout on weights.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

21-Day Challenge – Workout #12

21-Day Challenge – Workout #11 

Yesterday was my best workout ever.  It was a lower body workout.  My goal was to burn 500 calories.  I burned 447.  I joined this weightlifting for women’s forum on and a few of the ladies were talking about NewRules of Lifting for Women.  I looked at a few reviews.  I don’t think I’m ready for that.  Others recommended a few weightlifting sites.  I checked out a few.  One of the things I learned last night while reading through some of these sites is that I could make more use of my cardio sessions.  I also think I’m going to find a specific program to follow during the month of December.  I may try a different eating plan too.  However, I would have to discuss that with my OA sponsor. 

Right now I’ve been doing 30-minute sessions on the treadmill, Elliptical, or bike and recently started doing a 15-minute cooldown.  Last night I came across the following Interval Cardio Training plan for lifters.  Unfortunately, I do not remember the site to give proper credit (I tried to find it but couldn’t).  Anyhow, I’m going to try this for the remaining week:

Interval Elliptical or Bike

Mins 1 – 2 – Level 1 (Easy effort)

Mins 3 – 5 – Level 2 (Moderate effort)

Mins 6 – 9 – Level 3 (Difficult effort)

Mins 10 – 11 – Level 2

Mins 12 – 15 – Level 3

Mins 16 – 17 – Level 2

Mins 18 – 21 – Level 3

Mins 22 – 24 – Level 2

Mins 25 – 26 – Level  1 

I’ll probably go to 30 mins on Level 1.  We’ll see how I feel.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

21-Day Challenge: Workout #9

21-Day Challenge:  Workout #9

Yep.  Although it was day 10, it was workout number 9 for me.  I just felt too yucky on Friday to workout.  I think I did about 10 minutes of stretching and called it a day.  Anyhow, this workout was fine.  My body is sore but not too sore.  I do know I’m giving my muscles are a good workout.  Today was cardio and upper body:

Cycling – 30 minutes

Lat Pulldown – 55 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Seated Row Machine – 30 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Ab Machine – 50 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Overhead Press – 35 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Chest Machine (I don’t know the correct name) – 20 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Pullover  Machine – 20 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Cycling – 15 mins.

I’m feeling really tired.  I need to focus on getting some more rest.
I am also thinking about getting a Fitbook to help me plan and track my workout.  I think there are pros and cons.  The pros are that I am more likely to record my workouts because I can take the notebook with me.  The cons are that I would be less likely to update my blog about my progress.  I have a hard enough time as it is updating my blog.  It does some like a great tool.  I'm sure I could find something comparable online, for free.  Well see....


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

21-day Challenge - Workout 7

21-day Challenge - Workout 7

My legs and abs are so sore! I’m glad today was an upper body workout day!  Hopefully my lower half will feel better tomorrow.  Today’s workout:

30-min warm up – cycling

Overhead press – 35 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Seated Row – 30 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Chest machine (not sure of correct name) – 20 lbs.,  10 reps,  1x.  It was too heavy so my second set was  10 lbs, 15 reps .

Fixed Pulldown – 55 lbs.,  15 reps, 2x

15-min cool down - cycling

21-Day Challenge -- Workout 6

21-Day Challenge – Workout

Tuesdays are a busy day for me.  I had every intention of getting up at 5 am and going to the gym.  Then, the soreness hit me when I jumped out of bed.  Monday’s workout is still with me so I decided to take it easy and do yoga at home.

Doing some reading about DOMS – delayed onset muscle soreness.  I know I just have to tough it out, do a little more stretching, I also probably need to do a better cool down so I’m going to add 10 minutes of easy cardio to the end of my workouts.  I also have a foam roller.  I need to start using it!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

5K Training

I have not started training for my second 5K as planned.  I’m starting to have second thoughts about it.  I didn’t start last week before I had a cold AND it was so windy and cold out due to the storm Sandy.  Then, I joined LA Fitness and I’ve been working on building a workout routine.  Truth is…I’m tired.  I still have a stuffy nose along with sneezing.  I cannot afford to get sick.  I just don’t think I have the stamina for running outside in the cold.  I thought about training on the treadmill but I don’t like running on the treadmill – it hurts my knees. 

I was reading my latest issue of Runner’s World and I realize I may need to work on having better gear to run outside.  I still have time to get it together. 

Saturday, November 3, 2012

21-Day Challenge: Workout 3

21-Day Challenge:  Workout 3

I didn’t feel like going to the gym today.  I was tired.  I took a quick power nap, grabbed my protein drink, and headed out the door.

Today’s workout:

30 mins – cycle

Abdominal Crunch Machine – 2x – 15 reps – 30 lbs.

Leg Extension – 2x – 15 reps – 35 lbs.

Leg Curls – 2x – 15 reps – 60 lbs.

Glute Machine – 1x – 15 reps – 20 lbs.  – I can’t believe how weak I am in this area! I couldn’t do a  second set!

Hip Abduction – 2x – 15 reps – 80 lbs.

Recovery Meal – 12 oz. Silk Fruit and Protein Mango + 1 scoop 365 Vanilla Whey Protein

I scheduled my one hour complimentary training session for Monday.


Friday, November 2, 2012

21-Day Challenge – Workout 2

21-Day Challenge – Workout 2

I’m still feeling a bit anxious before going into the gym.  As soon as I walked it the sales manager starting singing my name.  I was surprised he remembered my name.  I guess there aren’t many bald, black women who go to that gym.  I’m sure I make quite the impression.  Lol!  I left feeling more at ease.

Today I did 30 minutes on the Elliptical and then decided to focus on my upper body.

Ab Crunch Machine  - 50 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Seated Row – 35 lbs., 15 reps, 2x

Lat Pulldown – 55 lbs, 15 reps, 2x

Tricep Kickbacks – 10 lbs, 15 reps, 2x

I’m feeling yesterday’s workout in my quads and today’s workout in my arms.  My goal is to add more exercises to my routine for the remainder of this month.  Then, I work on adding an additional set.

Today’s recovery meal – ½ cup of Silk Fruit and Protein Mixed Berry + a scoop of 365 Vanilla Whey Protein mixed with water.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

21-Day Challenge: Workout 1

21-Day Challenge:  Workout 1

So I decided to kick it up a notch and commit to a minimum 45-minute workout for 21 days.  I have to admit I was a bit nervous going into the gym.  It’s huge and everyone looks like they know what they’re doing.  I put on my “fake it until you make it” face and went in: 

30 minutes cycling

Abdominal Curl Machine – 50 lbs., 15 reps – 2x

Leg Curls – 60 lbs., 15 reps – 2x

Leg Extensions – 30 lbs., 15 reps, 2x  

I also took a quick peek at the spin class.  I want to give it a try next week.  I think I can handle it.  I’ll just get a bike in the back of the room. 

My recovery meal – 8 oz. Silk Fruit and Protein Mixed Berry. 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

LA Fitness

I just returned from a tour of LA Fitness.  I feel a little uneasy and intimidated going to such a large and open gym but I can get a really good discount through work and it has a pool.  So I shared a little bit of my story with the guy who was giving me the tour.  He was really cool.  He then shared with me that 1.5 years ago he lost 120 pounds and now he’s managing a gym. He is working on losing the last 20.  He advised me to focus on weights and take the spin and aqua fit classes.  I am so very grateful that Spirit continues to place in my path so many loving, supporting people. 

So, tomorrow I will be doing my first workout at my new gym!

Also, while I was there he checked my body fat – 44.30 and my BMI is 39.4.  Yuck!  I'm looking forward to seeing how much I improve those numbers.  What was really surprising is that according to his chart I need to lost 47 pounds.  This is exactly the amount I on my weight loss ticker.  I’m not sure if how I chose my goal weight but I’m right on track.  I’m really excited to get started!

Monday, October 15, 2012

21-Day Challenge

How much is it worth to you to change a habit? Would you be willing to pay if you failed?  Invest in Yourself   

I saw a mention about in an article in Runner’s World.  You can commit $21 toward a 21-day goal.  Every day you meet your goal, you get a dollar back.  When you don’t meet the goal, it goes toward a charity.  I’m going to give it a try beginning November 1.

Motivational Monday

"Success is 90 percent physical and 10 percent mental.  But never underestimate the power of that 10 percent." ~Tom Fleming, two-time NYC Marathon winner (1973, 1975)

"As I get older I see that running has changed for me. What used to be about burning calories is now more about burning up what is false. Lies I used to tell myself about who I was and what I could do, friendships that cannot withstand hills or miles, the approval I no longer need to seek, and solidarity that cannot bear silence. I run to burn up what I don't need and ignite what I do." ~Kristin Armstrong

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Let Freedom Run!

My next 5K is in 100 days.  My back is still giving me trouble.  I've been walking two miles since my 5K last Saturday.  I'm going to continue walking until I leave for my retreat.  When I return, I will begin training on November 1st.  I've got to make sure I incorporate some hills in my training this time.  I'm so excited!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Running: What's Next?

I posted my 5K pics on Facebook and my cousin comments, What's next? I've been thinking about this question all day today. My next goal is to run nonstop. Truth is it was my goal on Saturday. I truly believe I would have been able to accomplish my goal of running nonstop on Saturday if the course hadn’t been changed. Anyhow, I’m going on a silent retreat next week so I’ll be sitting most of the day.  I'm kind of worried I'm going to lose my momentum. When I return, I plan to work on my speed and tackle some hills. I’m also going to start running in the evenings. So grateful I no longer have to worry about the Atlanta heat.


Sunday, October 7, 2012

My First 5K Run! I Did It!

My first 5K.  The nerves.  The excitement.  The self-doubt.  The positive self-talk.  I had all these thoughts swirling around in my head.  To top it off, I had a backache.  Oh yeah, and the course was changed at the last minute!  It was much more hilly than I anticipated.  I tried but I had to walk up most of the hills.  It is was it.  I completed the race in 52 minutes.  I had a blast!

I did learn a lot last night.  I preferred running alone.  The crowd and the encouraging words from my friends was a bit much for me.  While I appreciated it, there were times I just wanted to lose myself in my thoughts and/or music.  I am now having second thoughts about joining a running group.  Another thing I learned is that I need to do more hill work.  I trained on inclines similar to the original course.  I need to be prepared for anything. 

When it’s all said and done, I showed up, and completed the race.  Scratch "Running in a 5K" off my fitness bucklet list! I am very grateful to God for bringing me this far.
UPDATE: appears my time may be a little better than I thought.  My goal was to finish around 45 minutes.  They had to change the course late Friday afternoon.  The organizers acknowledge that the course was a bit off.  They were switching around the course right in the middle of the race! Some runners who were wearing their GPS watches are saying it was around 3.28 miles.  The first leg of people possibly ran up to 4 miles.  I feel awful for the people who were trying to run PRs. 

Monday, October 1, 2012

Rain, rain, go away!

It's been raining for two days. I'm not hardcore enough to want to run in the rain so I did 45 minutes on the Elliptical.  So today I look out the window and it's pouring.  It just occurred to me.  What if it's raining on Saturday?  Will I still participate? 

It would be just my luck that it rains on Saturday.  When I walked my first 5K, it rained.  Then again, I trained in the rain.  I'm scared to run in the rain.  I'm afraid I'll slip and fall.  So, if it's raining on Saturday, I will just sit it out or walk.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Seven Days

Really panicking.  I couldn't run the way I wanted or expected to today. I lost one week when I wasn't feeling well.  I'm really struggling to run. Today I decided to run in the evening.  Since the 5K is in the evening, I guess I should give it a try.  The real reason is that I forgot to set my alarm last night.  Anyhow, my last few runs will be in the evening.

I had to stop and walk more than a few times today.  Not happy.  Feeling a little discouraged and frustrated.  It is what it is.  I'm just going to keep plugging away.  No matter what happens next Saturday, I am very proud of the progress I made.  It will be the first 5K I attempt to run but it won't be my last!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Crunch Time

Finally! I finally got myself together and went out for a run.  OMG! I did not do well.  I could barely finish a mile and my 5K is in nine days.  I'm not going to worry about it.  I'm just going to do my best.  It's my own fault for not pushing myself.  Even though I wasn't feeling well last week, I could have done some walking or something. 

So, I'm going to try again on Friday morning.  Tomorrow, I'll go for a brisk walk.  I'll go out again on Sunday and Wednesday.  Then Saturday will be the big day!

I am very grateful to God for the progress I've made.  While this will be the first 5K I attempt to run, it will not be my last!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Fifteen Days to Go!

Fifteen days! I have 15 days until my 5K.  I’m getting VERY nervous and full of self-doubt.  I haven’t been out running since my birthday a week ago.  I haven’t been feeling well.  I think the cool, rainy weather during my vacation last week caught up with me.  I also haven’t been sleeping well.  Anyhow, I’ve only run up to 2.5 miles.  I’m not even sure I can do 3.1 miles and I only have 15 more days to train.  Hopefully, I’ll feel better so I can get back out there.  No matter what happens,  I am proud of myself for finally completing the Couch to 5K program.

Monday, September 10, 2012

New and Unfamiliar Routes: 30-Minute Run

Vacationing in Massachusetts this week.  I was a little apprehensive about running an unfamiliar route and I do believe it affected my workout.  As a new runner, I do have to work on acclimating myself to different routes, etc.

It's much cooler here so I my hands were cold.  The wind was blowing in my face.  My eyes were teary so I really couldn't see.  Then, the sidewalk was pretty narrow.  Then there were the dogs.  Now, I walked this same route about two years ago when I was here and totally forgot about the dogs behind the invisible fence.  I really didn't feel comfortable running by them.  What if that fence fails, I thought.  So, I stopped and walked until I was out of their sight.  I do so again on my way back.

It wasn't a good workout but I'm cutting myself some slack.  It was my first experience running away from home.  However, while I was running, I thought I need to broaden my horizons because I will be running new and unfamiliar routes/roads during my races.  Anyhow, I'll be back out there on Wednesday or Thursday.  I will be changing my route.  I just don't feel comfortable running by those dogs. 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Another 30-minute run

Lol! I have to laugh when I say, another 30-minute run, like it's no big deal.  It's a big deal for me.  I am still amazed at my progress.  I have a lot of self-doubt creeping in and my 5K date creeps up.  I'm doing my best to stay in the moment and enjoy the journey.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Wednesday and Sunday Runs

I forgot to blog about my Wednesday run.  It's probably because I want to forget about it.  I really wasn't feeling the workout.  I also think I started out running too fast.  Long story short, I stopped after mile 1 and walked the rest of the way home.

Fast forward to this morning.  I got up and said a prayer of thanks for the progress I made.  I also asked for help because I wanted to run two miles.  Long story short, I did it! I really believe I could have gone farther but I didn't want to push it too far. 

After running, I usually am totally spent.  I felt a bit different this morning.  I've been eating a little more for the past few days. I've been maintaining my calories between 1400 to 1600.  Lately, I've been eating between 1600 to 1900.  I made a note on Friday to contact my company's nutritionist next week.  This is a huge dilemma for me because I do not want to use running as an excuse to overeat.  I am aware of someone who is binge eater who uses running to try to balance out the calories she consumes.  I don't want to get caught up in that.  My OA sponsor is supportive of my increasing my calories so this keeps me accountable.  In fact, there are days she's told me my food intake is too low. 

Anyhow, I realize as I increase my running distance, I will also have to adjust my food plan. 

Monday, August 27, 2012

30 Minutes

Thirty-minute run today.  I felt pretty good.  I was on my way to pushing and then one of my worst nightmares happen --  one of my neighbor’s dogs started chasing me.  This is a huge fear for me because when I was a child I ran from a dog.  My uncle picked me up and he ended being bitten.  Fortunately, this dog’s bark was bigger than her bite.  I had to stop and wait for the dog to be retrieved.  I ran an extra minute or two to make up for the delay but I wasn’t able to get an accurate assessment of my progression on distance.  I’ll try again on Wednesday. 

Now, I don’t feel like it’s getting any easy for me to run.  I’m still pretty wiped out.  Today while I was meditating I realize that I can’t expect to unto 30 years of sitting on the sofa with 30 minutes of running when I’ve only been doing it less than a month.  I’ve made a lot a progress and I have to watch the internal, negative chatter.


I also went to my quarterly doctor’s appointment.  I have a new doctor.  Dr. G took some time off to deal with some family issues.  Anyhow, I like her.  She was able to test my A1c right in her office.  It’s 6.0.  I’ll find out the rest of my numbers in a week. 

After my appointment, I dropped by a friend’s house and her husband immediately commented on my weight loss.  I was a bit shocked because according to the scale I’ve only lost a pound.  People have been making comments here and there.  I’m not sure I see it. 

I just need to stick to my food plan, continue exercising, and stay off the scale!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

I am a real runner

Our slowness is not a measure of our value.  Not as individuals, not as runners.  We are slow, but we are real. ~ John Bingham, The Courage to Start

While I was reading The Courage to Start today, I was struck by the quote above.  It comes right on time.  Saturday I was working on increasing my pace and decided later on that day I should consider working on building my endurance.  For me, endurance is more important than speed. 

The issue is that there are some that have been asking me about my pace and how much distance I’m covering in the 30 minutes, etc.  I need to dismiss all the internal chatter than says I should be fast enough or that prompts me to compare myself with others.

To compare myself with others or worry about how fast (or slow in my case) I’m going is to set up me for defeat. 

Saturday, August 25, 2012

30-Minute Run

Today I planned to work on my speed with a 30-minute run.  I lasted 15 minutes!  I am proud of myself.  My endurance is building.

I try this again on Monday but I'm going to try a different strategy.  I read an article or blog (can't remember) that it's best to push for a couple minutes and then go back to your regular pace.  So, I'll try this and see what happens.  I need to be able to cover 3.1 minutes by October.  At the rate I'm going, I could probably walk faster than I'm running.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Week Eight, Day Three: Graduation Day!

What’s my name?!? What’s my name?!? What’s my name?!? Today I completed the Couch to 5K program.  I think this is my third attempt.  I DID IT! Today, I ran for 30 minutes.  My name is Sheila and I am a runner!  I’m a slow runner but a runner nonetheless! Hmm...I wonder if I should change the name of my blog to "Run With Me"?

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Rest and Recovery

I have not been feeling so well today so I did not jog today.  I'm planning to go out tomorrow so I'll be on a Sunday - Tuesday - Thursday schedule and then go back to Saturday - Monday - Wednesday.  In fact, if all goes well, I'll be a couch to 5K grad on Tuesday.  Yay! 

I did do some mental work on my first 5K.  I checked out the course today.  I drove the course and visualized myself running it.  It's not as bad as the AIDS 5K I walked last October out of the same park.  I was worried about this one hill because it was tough walking.  In fact, my friend almost had an asthma attack while walking up that hill.  I'm very grateful to God the course is different. 

Today I went to an arts festival so I did a lot of walking.  I could feel that my body is tired.  It was confirmation that I made the right choice in taking today off.  I also have a slight headache so I've been working on resting and hydration.  The fatigue is also probably because I worked seven straight days. 

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Week Eight, Day One

Week Eight, Day One! I cannot believe it.  Although I am happy about my progress, I find myself obsessing about my speed.  I made the mistake of figuring out my distance.  I ran 28 minutes today and barely ran two miles.  I am nowhere near 3.1 miles!  I’m reading The Courage to Start and there’s a warning against worrying about speed when you first start running.  I just remember walking my first 5K and coming in second to last.  While I was happy about finishing, I did have hopes of doing much better.  I know that the only person I’m competing with is my self.  I guess I need to do a better job of focusing on the fact that eight weeks ago I could barely run for two minutes so completing barely two miles is a pretty big deal!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Week Seven, Day Three -- Repeat

Repeated Week 7, Day 3 again today.  I did so much better.  Yesterday I worked on my hydration, stretched, and went to bed earlier.  I read somewhere that running keeps you honest about your fitness.  It’s so true.  There’s no half-stepping in this running realm.  You have to eat, hydrate, and rest properly or you will pay!  It's all good because the pay-ff is wonderful.  Today I ran 27 minutes!  I'm a runner!

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Week Seven, Day Three

Horrible! I knew it was going to be horrible before I opened the door.  I just wasn't feeling it.  I snoozed for a good 30 minutes. Once I forced myself to get dressed, I walked outside and it was hot and muggy from last night's rain.  I thought... No way!  So, I decided to go to the gym to complete the workout on the treadmill. 

I did my five-minute walk, started running, started sweating, and gave up.  I walked for another five-minutes and tried running again.  I lasted three minutes.  I then did 20 minutes of cycling and went home.  I will try again on Monday.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Week Seven, Day Two

Today my workout was to run for 26 minutes.  I'm so happy to say I did it.  I do have to admit that I was a little disappointed that I only ran 1.5 miles.  I guessestimated I would run at least 2 miles.  It's all good.  I didn't really push myself until the last ten minutes.  My goal has been to finish the workout.  Now that I'm nearing the end of the Coach to 5K program, I am going to focus on increasing my pace. 

The app says I should be able to finish a 5K in 30 minutes.  I don't think this is a realistic goal for me.  I'm shooting for 40 minutes.  Truthfully, as long as I finish without walking, I will be happy.  A time of 40 minutes or less will be a bonus. 

Monday, August 6, 2012

Week Seven, Day 1

I don't even know what to say.  It is beyond me how I made it this far.  I give all the credit to my amazing God who has been with me every step of the way.  I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I am going to finish the Couch to 5K program!  Yay!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Week Six, Day Three – The Repeat

I was really anxious today.  Actually, I've been anxious since Wednesday. What if I can’t complete this again? I did my best to visualize my workout and then stay present.  During my first run I realized that my body is not working as hard as my mind thinks it is.  I was able to relax into a comfortable breathing rhythm and enjoy my run.  The last five minutes of the first run were kind of hard but I reminded myself that I’ve run up that little incline many times before.  Today was no different.  I recovered during my three minute walk and finished strong with the ten minute run.  It wasn’t as bad as it was on Wednesday for a number of reasons.  The two most important:

1.       The weather wasn’t as humid.   There was a nice cool breeze.

2.       I had a good night’s rest.

So, Week Six is behind me now.  I still can’t believe my progress.  I had to laugh at myself today.  While driving I saw this really nice park with a path and thought, hmm… that would be a nice place to run.  The funny part was that I was soooo lost at the time.  I had no idea where I was.  I did the same thing yesterday.  I made a mental note to change my route in a few weeks to incorporate more inclines.  I realized the perfect (for me) spot to start. 
I also had swim lesson today.  It sucked! It's my own fault I didn't go to the pool and practice at all this week.  You better believe I'll be in the pool tomorrow.  Next week is my last lesson.  I want to be able to swim a lap and back.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Week Six, Day Three

Today’s workout was 15-min run, 3-min walk, and 10-min run.  Not sure what happened this morning but I didn’t finish my first run.   I started my walk break early and told myself I would just tack on the remaining five minutes to my second run.  Well, everything went fine.  I added the remaining five minute to my last run only to discover after I’m home that I owe myself an additional five minutes! WTH?  I don’t think I had another five minutes left in me anyhow so I will be repeating this workout on Saturday.

The perfectionist in me is so disappointed in myself.  I ran for 20 minutes on Monday so I don’t know why this workout was so hard.  I’m thinking maybe my pace was too fast or maybe not.  I know I’m notorious for self-sabotage!  I’m trying so hard not to beat myself up.  I have to remind myself that I have come a long way, to be very grateful for the progress I’ve made.  Some workouts will be like this.  I know my opportunity is getting enough rest.  I stayed up late watching the Olympics when I should have been in bed sleeping. 

Oh well, Saturday I will do better.  I will not give up! I have to remember to take this one day at a time, one workout at a time.  I have 65 days before the 5K.  One “bad” workout is not going to break me.  I can do this!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Week Six, Day Two

Week Six, Day Two

I DID IT!  I ran for 20 minutes! It took me so long to get myself together this morning.  I was so nervous I wanted to cry.  When I finally get out the door and start my warm up, I realize I forgot my hat.  I’m a creature of habit.  Not having my hat really made me comfortable.  I wanted my hat! Unfortunately, I didn’t have time to go back and get it.  So, I focused on my music and started running when I heard the prompt.  This is when the mind started:  You’re not ready.  It’s okay if you have to repeat this.  Why did you start this?  This went on for about five minutes.  I eventually let it go and turn my attention but to my music and enjoyed my workout.  I was so happy when I heard that “you are halfway done” prompt! 
Then, I came to that little incline that has been giving trouble.  I thought about changing my route but didn’t.  This is when I told myself, the mind wants to quit but the body is fine.  I just kept repeating this.  I felt so badass!  I used the decline to help me recover and catch my breath.  "Two minutes left….one minute left.  Coodown. Workout complete."  I headed home with the biggest grin on my face!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Healthy Eating: Roasted Veggies and Chicken

Really wasn't sure what to cook this week.  I went with something quick and easy. 

I decided to experiment with the greek yogurt marinade I used a few weeks ago.  Today I used plain greek yogurt, paprika, lemon juice, sea salt, and cayenne pepper:

Due to poor planning, I was not able to let the chicken marinade overnight.  I really like using greek yogurt. It keeps the chicken really moist.  I will definitely use these ingredients again.

For my veggies, I choose zucchini, squash, red pepper, and onion.  I love, love, love the colors! I added some olive and sea salt and popped it in the oven.  Yummy!

It was a yummy meal!  I'm planning to roast some eggplant later on in the week.  Here's today's dinner:

Plank A Day Two


My goal is to do a plank a day for 30 consecutive days.  I don't know if I'll be updating my blog every day though ;p!

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Swim Lesson #3

I can swim! I can do the freestyle! Today I worked on my breathing technique.  It's not going so well but I know it will get better with practice.  I managed to swim an entire lap today! I was so excited!

Swimming definitely goes you a great workout! I'm wiped out!

Plank A Day

So I’ve been seeing the hash tag #PlankADay on Twitter for quite some time.  In fact, I vaguly remember joining this challenge a while ago.  Anyhow, today I decided to try doing a plank a day for 30 Days.  I’ve been doing them off and on since my former personal trainer introduced them into my workouts. 
Today’s plank:  1:02 

Week Six, Day One

Done!  Today’s workout was not the best.  I updated my playlist last night and it malfunctioned two minutes into my warm up. Ugh!  I’m not sure if it was the new playlist or the app.  I really don’t like working out without music but I didn’t want to stop to fiddling with it.  I didn’t wear my HRM so I didn’t have my watch so I moved my iTouch to a position where I could look at the time.  Luckily the voice prompts were still working so all I had to do is focus on my workout.  Ugh! Listening to myself huff and puff was not a good thing for me mentally.  I did my best to take my mind off my breathing and say mantras and affirmations to get me through.  I also thought about that first Saturday when I could barely make it through those 60-seconds runs and here I was running for nine minutes.  It worked!  I completed both 9-minute runs feeling like I could go a bit longer!  Monday I will be running for 20 minutes straight.  I really need to work on making sure my music plays correctly. 

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Week Five, Day Three

Week Five done! I cannot believe I ran for nine minutes straight this morning.  I didn’t get off to a good start.  I thought I hit the snooze button but I turned off my alarm so I was 30 minutes behind schedule.  I rushed to get dressed and out the door.  It’s kind of hard to be late for work when you work from home.  Anyhow, I didn’t have time for a proper dump (TMI, I know) so I that also contributed to the unsettled feeling I had when I started. 

I was also annoyed that I forget to change my playlist but okay let’s get this over and done with.  My first run was for nine minutes.  I did it! The other runs – 5 minutes and 2 minutes were fine.  I cannot believe how my stamina and endurance continues to increase.  Week Six is the big 2-0!  The 20-minute run!  I’m mentally preparing myself.  As long as I take it slow and remind myself that my mind will always want to quit before my body, I will complete it.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Week Five, Day Two

Today’s workout was over before I knew it.  Just when I was mentally preparing to dig deeper, I heard, “cool down!”  What?  That’s it?  Today, I ran for 6 mins, walked 1 min, ran 4 mins, walked 1 min, and ran 6 mins.  I’m so excited.  I can’t believe I survived those short walk breaks.