A Couple Bad Weeks

Well, my streak ended, on the bright side, at least it wasn’t because I slacked off. I managed to get in 4 sessions last week and then the wheels fell off. Had a health issue this week that meant no workouts and probably will only have a couple next week.

I’m trying hard to see this as an opportunity to get back to my workouts after a setback. An opportunity to show that I am strong enough to return to my goal after unforeseen circumstances.

All that said, its still a bummer. I really like to see those green bars on my dailymile progress chart; seeing none really gets me down.

Back at it in a couple of weeks when my body is all healed and ready to go.

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Keeping Sight of the Goal

Another successful week in the books. Reviewing my workouts for the week, I was excited to see over 900 miles logged in dailymile; 152 of those since January 1st. Keeping the commitment I made to myself and having those 152 miles as recorded proof of my effort is awesome.
Before heading to my treadmill this afternoon I asked my kids if they could work together and get along for about an hour while I ran. My kids cheerfully said they could and I headed to workout, slightly dubious.
About 5 minutes into my run my daughter joyfully bounded into the room and said “Mommy, I’m going to close this door for you. I don’t want the dogs to bug you.” I was struck by her thoughtfulness. It occurred to me how cooperative my kids are when its time for me to exercise. They are great supporters and I really appreciate it.
Only 5 weeks until the Seahawks 12k. I’m getting a little nervous I won’t be ready. It will be a matter of whether I can run/walk or it will be more walk/run. Several times during workouts this week I had to remind myself to focus on my current run and not waste energy worrying about a future one. I continue to use my mantras to stay focused and positive. The mantras are definitely helping my mental toughness, I don’t have to say them as often or as many times before my focus and determination return.

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And My Kids Continue to Inspire

Nearly 5 years ago our son first held our daughter. He was all smiles, squirming with restless energy at the prospect of helping care for his baby sister. Now there are days they can’t seem to be within earshot of one another without a fight. Their mutual annoyance isn’t a constant as they proved to me this weekend.

This weekend our 9 year old had his green belt test, even though he was well prepared, he woke up full of nerves. He quietly snuck into our room early Saturday morning only to be disappointed that his sister beat him to an early morning snuggle. His back stiffened as I offered to make room for him, knowing he likely woke up nervous for his test. To avoid a tussle, he and his dad headed downstairs to start the day. Our daughter, snuggled in to my shoulders and said “He has a case of tickles in his tummy.” For the next few minutes we talked about why people get “tickles in their tummies” and what we could do to help. I was pleased to see her compassion for her brother’s situation and her wisdom always surprises me.

For past belt tests we’ve hired a sitter come over and watch our daughter. My husband and I want to be able to pay attention to the test and I won’t lie, get some great pictures to share with family and friends. And frankly, the thought of trying to keep our daughter occupied (and quiet) for 90 minutes is a bit anxiety producing. This time we’d need to leave for a birthday party at about the time the test was likely to end. So, off the four of us went, hoping for the best. I packed snacks, crayons, notebook, my iPad mini and a positive attitude. We’d see what happened.

Our daughter did great! We kept her busy drawing on her notepad and virtually on the iPad. She watched as the kids went through the testing elements, enjoying when it was time to cheer for each group. We only had to remind her to whisper a few times. Oh, and another helpful activity, we turned on the forward facing camera of the iPad and got some silly shots of her…my how kids love to look at themselves. I think she enjoyed seeing her brother succeed.

For our son’s part, it was a good test, but he struggled a bit. He stayed up too late on Friday night and as I mentioned woke up early Saturday morning. He was tired and nervous, never a fun combination for anyone. I could tell his head wasn’t in the game at first, I knew he could do better. I told myself several times this was his thing, his journey, his opportunity to make of it what he would. And then he surprised me. When it was time to break a board the Grand Master gave him a thick board to break (he was the only one to get a “thick” board). He tried several times and just couldn’t get it. Normally he would do one of two things; get silly or get frustrated and give up. He did neither. The Grand Master switched out the board, gave him some encouragement, altered his stance a bit and BANG the board broke. 

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We all cheered (and I teared up). So proud of his willingness to stick it out.

Many runs this week I too wanted to give up. The pressure of getting my mileage up so I don’t embarrass myself at the 12k on April 13th haunts me for at least part of every workout. I continue to remind myself to focus on the next step. The only thing that matters during a workout is the decision to keep going. Only continued practice will get me to my goal, no amount of worry will help me have a good race.

I logged 20 miles this week with my best average mile time of 12:13 yesterday. Nope, I won’t win any races with that, but winning isn’t my goal. Spending 45 minutes, 4 times a week is what it is about for me. What do I need to achieve my goal? To take it one step at a time.

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Thank God for Working Out

What a week! It wasn’t any one big thing, but many little things that wore me down and made me long to jump in bed, pull the covers up over my head and stay there. I thought, more than once, how glad I am I decided to fit workouts into my daily routine.

Survival techniques included thinking about the immune system benefits of regular workouts (while cleaning kid vomit off the living room) and giving thanks for the escape created by 45 minutes on the treadmill (I admit to the possibility of giving my husband the politest of threats if anyone interrupted me.) I also used the step count on my Fitbit Force as motivation to take the stairs, even when the elevator doors taunted me by opening as I rushed past. Yep, it was the kind of week that makes you dig deep and remember “It won’t always be like this.”

Several times I found myself wondering whether or not it was cheating if I counted my activity minutes earned throughout the day as part of my 45 minute commitment. I decided not to since I love to see my mileage count as it steadily increases on Dailymile.

I added significant run intervals to my workouts this week in preparation for the Seahawk 12k, now less than 2 months away. My mantra of “Settle in to strength” continues to help keep me going when I want to give up.

To increase my strength, I ordered a Bosu Ball (the 55 cm version). I used the Bosu Ball Professional a few years ago during physical therapy and found it fun and challenging. I’ll let you all know how I like it and how I work in into my exercise routine.

We continue to experience winter weather so the treadmill continues to be my running companion. I am excited for the weather and my fitness to continue to improve so I can go for a run while my 9 year old son rides his bike along side. We’ve never done that before and the thought is exciting for both of us.

And finally my progress charts from dailymile. Feels great to see my mileage over 855 miles; that continues to be really motivating!

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Be Your Own Cheerleader

Weekly Progress

Successful week in the books, and it was busy once again. I’m excited I’ve maintained my training for over a month now and when life throws me a curve ball, I manage to get a hit.

The week started with the Seahawks Super Bowl win over the Broncos. As a Seahawks fan, it was a great game and I loved the spirit it brought out in our community. My husband and son joined 700,000 of our closest friends for the celebration parade on Wednesday. Although it was unseasonably cold, they had a great time.

Old Man Winter capped off the week with 3 inches of snow last night and into this morning. Waking up to a winter wonderland, all 4 of us were outside by 9 a.m. to play before it all melted. Snow is great fun, especially when it arrives on the weekend (and this year’s timing meant it helped soothe the inevitable football withdrawals.)

On Thursday I decided to break part of my “It’s All About Time” commitment. I originally told myself I wasn’t going to train for anything in particular or participate in any races. Well, my neighbor asked if I’d run the Seahawks 12k with her in April. It’s a fun event with a beautiful route along the east side of Lake Washington. Although hilly and typically windy, there is a great spirit around this race, so I signed up. (Seahawks 12K)

Since I only have 7 weeks before the event, I need to start running again during my workouts. Yesterday and today I added three 8 minute jogging sprints into my workouts. Amazingly it wasn’t as difficult as I expected. Two things struck me:

  1. My mental toughness is returning faster than expected.
  2. My stamina isn’t as bad as I thought it would be.

For mental toughness, I use a new mantra “Settle in to the strength.” The mantra helps me focus on the physical and mental strength I’m gaining. It also focuses my thoughts on the benefits of my workouts that go beyond physical fitness. I am also my own cheerleader; congratulating myself for each step I take. In a “no duh” moment; I realized just how critical it is that I cheer myself on and believe what I am saying.

Oh, and when all else failed; the final thought that kept me going was this “I could be doing taxes.” Yep, it’s that time of year already. Many may disagree, but I choose a 45 minute run over doing taxes (almost) any day.

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Another Successful Week

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Another tool added to the It’s About Time arsenal, a Fitbit Force. I have looked at fitness trackers for the last year and finally decided to go with this one. Only feedback so far is that the instructions are a little too minimalist. The sleep tracker is a much touted feature for Fitbit and I was looking forward to seeing the results. I’m going to have to wait another day as I missed how to turn it on during set up. Minimal instructions are great, until a user misses out on a major feature. The other downside is not being able to connect it to Dailymile.

Speaking of Dailymile, I love the stats tracked. Seeing my nearly 825 miles is just awesome. Between the stats and daily graph I stay motivated and focused.

Another successful week in the books can only be made better by a Seahawks win at the Super Bowl. Let’s go Seahawks!

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Week 4 Complete

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Wow week 4 presented a new potential goal wrecking event…a puking kid. Ugh, a kid throwing up means instant panic and lots of anxiety for me. The kid recovered, I survived and used my 45 minutes to work off some of the anxiety. (I am hoping the solid month of fitness has improved my immune system too.)

As for my goal of 45 minutes/4 times a week, I’m actually completing 5 days a week and enjoying it. Dailymile.com continues to be key to my success. I hit a major milestone this week going over 800 miles. That is very inspiring and I can’t wait to hit 850. Knowing each of those miles was 100% up to me is awesome.

After completing my workout today I tried to remember what the experts say about how long it takes to make a new habit. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter because I think I am well on my way.

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