40 While 40

I am sure you have all seen lists that people compile before a milestone birthday. Well,  I am not sure how in the heck this happened but I turned 40 today! Yikes!!

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Anyway, at the Rehoboth half, I was running behind a girl wearing a 30 before 30 shirt. I’m sure you have seen this before.  Her shirt listed 30 things she wanted to do before turning 30.

I decided, “Hey, I want to jump on that bandwagon too”!

So I started a list and man do I love a list. But, I realized that 40 things before 40 was A LOT of things to come up, and accomplish.  So, I settled on 40 things during the year I am 40!  Some of the things are really quite silly but it’s my list 😉

  1. Run a sub 22 minute 5k. My current PR is 23:34.
  2. Read Little Women– just downloaded it.  Not loving it but going to try and keep on reading.
  3. Go hiking-Accomplished! Hiked in Acadia National Park in Maine
  4. Try stand up paddle boarding
  5. Celebrate my 40th somewhere other than Delaware. Thinking Vegas! Yup, celebrated it in Vegas.
  6. Take a trip to Gettysburg- Going for Halloween weekend!
  7. Be able to do more than one pull up.
  8. Attend a November Project work out.
  9. Attend a play-Saw 2 this year and loved them. Hoping to see Book of Mormon.
  10. Improve my softball fielding skills-been working on it!
  11. Go to a day spa.
  12. Volunteer at a race.
  13. Do more things with my nephew-He is almost 10 and I don’t want to miss out on spending time with him.
  14. Go white water rafting.
  15. Stop stressing so much-I find that I am always stressing something be it-work, my running, or some other nonsense.  It is just not healthy!
  16. Improve my self confidence.
  17. Plan a trip outside of the country.
  18. Improve my back issues.
  19. Do more yoga-see above.
  20. Learn to let go of negative feelings.
  21. Stay at a Bed and Breakfast.
  22. Improve my geography skills.
  23. Stop with all the sugar- Total work in progress
  24. Try to complain less-Negativity begets negativity.
  25. Grow in my profession-I’m not talking about a change; I just think in my profession you need to constantly strive for growth and improvement.
  26. Save more money-this will always be a goal.
  27. Pay my car off-I have never been without a car payment.
  28. Learn to love the holidays-I could write a whole post on the reasons for this, but my lack of enthusiasm affects others so I will try!
  29. Cook at home more often.
  30. Attend a comedy show.
  31. Do some redecorating.
  32. Re-do flower beds in front of house.
  33. Drink more water.
  34. Learn to speak Spanish.
  35. Take more pictures and not worry about how I look in them.
  36. Talk less and listen more.
  37. Buy a sectional- this better have happened when I look back next year.
  38. Complete a running program.
  39. PR a half marathon.
  40. Reduce all or nothing thinking.

I can’t wait to look back on this a year from now and see how I did!!

 

 

 

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I Cheated!

Well, I finally broke! I attended an O’s game a couple of  Saturday’s ago and was dying to have a mango-rita….so I did!

That was day 21 and I figured I would just hop back on the train- no harm no foul.

Wrong!  That mango-rita was a gateway drug let me tell you 😉

I am a creature of habit. Every single Sunday I eat at a Korean BBQ restaurant. The dish I get is easily my favorite meal.   I haven’t been able to have it because of the MSG and sugar in the sauce (It’s a sweet and spicy chicken dish).

So after Saturday’s cheat drink, I decided to eat my favorite meal at the BBQ and from there it was a slippery slope.

At Day 21 I had lost 3 lbs.  3 measly little pounds.  For all of the restrictions, it just didn’t feel worth it to me.

So, what did I do? Went on a total binge, that’s what.  I have since gained the 3 lbs back but have gotten myself under control.

I am now doing a calorie counter and this seems to be reigning me in.

My final thoughts about Whole 30 are:

1. I will never again restrict certain foods completely.  I became so consumed with my end date so I could have SUGAR!!

2. It is a great tool for people with food intolerances.  I am fortunate enough to be able to eat pretty much anything without issues so this diet is just not for me.

 

What I Ate-Whole 30

I realize that there are a ton of Whole 30 recipes on pinterest  but I love reading a typical day from a person that is actively doing a certain diet.  This way I get a true picture of what to expect.

First, let it be known,  I am not a great cook.  I am not being self-deprecating.  It’s true.   I can throw together a quick meal but I don’t do fancy. This was one of my big concerns when considering Whole 30.

I hit the grocery store, list in hand, with no real agenda for meals.  Prior to starting, I had been eating hot sausage and snap peas for lunch every day so I stocked up on that.  I also grabbed a ton of fruits, vegetables, lean turkey and salmon.

Here is a typical day for me.

Breakfast- coffee with splash of unsweetened coconut milk.  I microwaved a sweet potato for 4 min to soften it up a bit and then cubed it.  Next, I cooked it in a skillet with some coconut oil. After it cooked for awhile, I fried 2 eggs over medium in the same skillet.   The combo of dippy eggs and sweet potato was amazing! Didn’t even miss the toast.

Had a early afternoon snack of watermelon.

Lunch-I cooked some fresh spinach in a tiny bit of coconut oil and added some grilled chicken and red/yellow peppers to the pan.  This wasn’t my favorite meal.  I was not crazy about the spinach but it did the job.

After a trip to the farmers market I had an apple with some almond butter.

Dinner- 1/2 filet of grilled salmon and 7 medium grilled shrimp.  I also fried some plantains in (you guessed it) coconut oil.

Now I am snacking on some honeydew melon and a few grapes.

Later I will have a cup of peppermint tea with nothing in it.

All in all, I am excited that I have tried/cooked some new things.  I have always wanted to try plantains and now I can say I have.

****After reading the forum, I realized I am not supposed to be snacking throughout the day but I am going to eat when I am hungry.  Take that Whole 30!

 

 

 

 

Whole 30 and Running

I began Whole 30 11 days ago! If you aren’t familiar with Whole 30 check out my last post. This week, I thought I would talk about how Whole 30 has affected my running.

The day I started Whole 30 was a Wednesday, so per usual, I headed to the gym after work to run.

I had a softball game later that night but was hoping to get my full run in.

Quick aside- I HAVE to chew gum when I run. It helps keep my mouth moist and it’s a habit that I have never been able to break, even through jaw issues and braces.  The problem is I can’t have xylitol on Whole 30.

I started my run sans gum and didn’t feel too bad.

Fast forward to mile 3 and I was dying. I mean exhausted. So much so that I had to call it a day.

Would you believe that I attributed it to the lack of gum?!! I figured I would  just try again tomorrow.

And so I did. With almost the same result. I made it an agonizing 4.50 miles.

Then it dawned on me- ummm no carbs=no running fuel!

I went on the whole 30 forum and typed in running fatigue.

Here’s just one example-
The term “carb flu” was a new one to me but trust me, it is a real thing!  I am achy all over and have major leg fatigue etc.

Most people suggested that the running fatigue improved around day 14 and that incorporating more sweet potatoes and eating more starchy veggies (squash, zucchini, beets) would help.

Plus, I do  body pump about 2x/week and while I feel fine during the class, my legs are shot for days after!!

All in all, I have been able to get my running distance/week in, but my speed has taken a major hit!

I so wanted to use this as an excuse to quit,  but I just can’t give in after making a commitment  to myself.  I am just hoping that things improve.

Here’s to day 14!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Whole 30

As you know (because I keep talking about it), I will be the big 4-0 in a little over 2 months!!!

I will be heading out to Vegas to celebrate, which has me psyched.  Planning a trip is the way to go for birthdays, I swear.  This trip has taken all of the “dread” about turning 40 away!

With this being said, I still want to look my absolute best!

Which brings me to my next point.

I  think I work out pretty often (for me) and because I do, I don’t always make the best food choices! I eat dessert pretty much every night and takeout happens quite often.

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As a result of this, I have gained a few pounds.

In an effort to reset and, hopefully, lose those pounds, I am doing Whole 30.

Rather than go on and on, I will just give you the quick rundown on Whole 30.  You eat mostly proteins, vegetables (except corn) and fruits.  No sugar or artificial sweetener, no milk products and no bread or grains of any kind.

I started Whole 30 on Wednesday and thought I would talk a little about how it has been going.

Day one- I woke up today feeling both apprehensive (mostly about my coffee) and optimistic (Give me a plan, I can stick to it).  I put 2 equal and sugar-free French vanilla in my coffee. It really was a source of anxiety for me!

I put coconut milk (no sugar) in my coffee and it was ok. After that, I thought, “Ok, I can do this.”

Since then I would say the weekdays are quite manageable.  It’s the weekends that are hard.

I went to the Lotus Festival yesterday and much of the fare was burgers and fries.  We went out to eat after and I had a grilled chicken salad w/ oil and vinegar.  Bill had dessert which I was dying to eat but didn’t.

Most difficult- drinking coffee black and no diet coke! No carbs, which has affected my running performance.  More on that later.  Meal prepping is a bear.  Finding foods without sugar can be so challenging.

Easiest-starting Whole 30 in the summer.  I have been eating so much watermelon!!! Thankfully I love fruits and vegetables and they are so fresh this time of year.

That is all for now.  I will be back to talk about how Whole 30 has affected my running.

 

 

 

Age Group Awards

Before I begin lets start with a disclaimer: This post is in no way written to belittle anyone’s accomplishments, including my own.

As you know, at the end of races they give out awards to the top 3 finishers in each age group for both males and females.

Cool, right?!

I have always thought so!  In fact, I am happy to have received a couple over the years. And I fully admit I mention them in my blog posts.

So, what’s my problem?

Well, my very speedy fiancé and I ran the Mt. Harmon 5k together and he was the 3rd overall finisher!!!! The 3rd person! Incredible right?!

Which brings me to my point.

They announced 1st male and 1st female and proceeded to hand out AG awards.  For the first time ever, I was irked by this.  I think they should have at least announced the top 3 finishers. Yes, I realize I may only be saying this because Bill was 3rd but still. Sidebar: He also finished 2nd in his age group (31-39).

Age group awards are fun but let’s be honest the people who receive them (myself included) aren’t always putting up the greatest times.  I know this sounds harsh but it’s the truth.  For instance, at the last 5k I ran I was 2nd in my age group.  The 1st person ran the race in 20:51 (she was 1st female) and I ran the ran in 25:09 (6th female).  That is a huge time and place gap.  I don’t feel like we are even in the same league so why should I go stand up on the podium next to her?

Simply put, the reason I run races is to beat my PR.  Am I upset that I don’t win races?  Of course not, because I don’t expect to.  I also don’t expect to be rewarded ie. awarded for being mediocre.  A shiny new PR is the only medal I need.

The bottom line is whether I receive an age group award or not,  I still don’t feel like I won- because I didn’t!

I will say there are some exceptions.  Tough courses warrant slower times so I will happily get up there and get my award in those cases.

I love to hear your thoughts on this. Let me know what you think-agree or disagree?

 

About Today…..

I ran the Race against Domestic Violence 5k today in Wilmington on the Riverfront.

I have run the course a handful of times and it is considered to be “flat and fast.” Guess this depends on the runner :0).

After coming off an incredibly difficult 5k (Mt. Harmon-see previous post) last weekend, I thought I had a shot at a decent time today.

Ummm, Nope.

I ran it in 25:09 and all I can say is UGGHH!  I am almost a minute and a half off of my PR.  I told myself that this race was just a gauge of my current fitness level, nothing more.  BUT I was secretly hoping that I might be able to run it in 24 minutes flat.  Ha!!

I was 2nd in my AG but didn’t even stay for awards because I was being such a baby so upset about my time.  Plus, I have a few thoughts on age group awards which I will talk about in my next post.

No excuses for this one other than the fact that I am just not at my previous fitness level.  I think a combo of a 15 lb weight gain and not running “uncomfortable “(ie. slacking) are the two culprits here.

It was a big reality check and my plan is to keep trying!

My splits were 8:29, 8:04, and 8:01 which tells me that mile 1 is the issue.  The first mile of every 5k, I always start out feeling so out of breath.  This happens almost immediately and am not sure if it is just nerves and adrenaline or what.

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Here I am all set to go….. get all out of breath within the 1st 30 seconds of the race.

Bill (the fiancé) and I talked about the race and my splits and he was so surprised that I was able to pick it up so much for miles 2 and 3.  I, too, find it odd especially considering how fatigued I always feel the 1st mile.  He thinks this means I can easily improve by working on mile 1.  Man, I hope he is right.

Biggest takeaway from today: I didn’t give up.    This is huge for me.  I lack confidence in my running ability and it can really hurt me. At the 2 mile mark I glanced at the time on my garmin (I only use it to see distance and try my best not to look at the time) and was so discouraged after doing some quick math.  I wanted so badly to give up and slow down (I had such a why bother attitude for a second) BUT I didn’t. I pushed all the way through the finish.

I am glad I have started my 5k “season” early and that I have all summer to improve.  I am so hopeful that I can just keep my knee healthy.

Talk to you next week.