Sunday, December 12, 2010

Day 171: Week 26

There are approximately 3 weeks left before my second 5k.  This race is on New Year's Day.  It may be kinda silly to do a race on New Year's Day considering I would have been working all day and night, but I feel like what better way to start the New Year?

Considering that I have a goal that is ever before me, why not begin the first day of the year off by engaging in an activity that will play an active role in my life for the rest of my life (or at least the next year)?  School for this term is officially done (although I have one more paper to write so that I can pass) and although my work load at work is not about to decrease, at least I won't be consumed by school for the next few weeks (literally only 2 though).

Week 26 has some tough days on the horizon.  This boot camp is going to kill me (well at least kill the fat off of me-LOL).  Not that it's totally different from some of the classes at the gym, because it's not.  But what is different is that you stay on 90 the entire time and everything is super fast.  I can't just say "Oh, it's tougher for me cause I'm heavier" because that is not the truth.  I came to terms with that lie while in the car.  Physical activity is tough for anybody who engages in it and an individual's intensity/comfort level can not be compared to anyone else's.

You know, I just want to be a better stewart of this body - especially since God lives within me.  That's all.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Day 169: Boot Camp

Honest Talk Today...

My intensity has diminished by a lot.  That includes working out, eating right and just staying focused - it has decreased.  Why?  Because I'm tired and just want to sleep for 4 weeks straight (totally a dream).  I guess the reality is that this is my busiest time of year at work and the demands of school is a monster all in of its self.  I haven't been having "Track Date" in the morning for two reasons -
2.  Sometimes I'm just going to bed when I'd be getting up to get ready for the track.

What I eat has changed because I have not been diligent in cooking my meals and packing my lunch.  As a result, it's easy to revert back to picking up a quick meal here and there so that you are not starving; or, pack lunch, but not dinner and all of the necessary snacks.  Most of the classes that my gym offers happen in the evening, which leaves me out because I can't get away from the office in time.

So after examining where I currently am, and know that I have no desire to stay in this place, I've decided to make a few changes
1.  I can't do this alone and need as much accountability as possible.  I've been debating between a personal trainer and joining a boot camp.  The cost of consistent Personal Training is more than what my budget can currently afford, but the Boot Camp is at an ungodly hour in the morning (5:45am until 6:45am).  But I am going to try the boot camp for a week to see how it goes.
2.  I'm going to find a nutritionist to come up with some meal plan options because when I plan what to eat, I'm not sure that I'm eating enough calories.  But when I don't plan what I'm going to eat (and engage in impulse eating), I KNOW that I eat well over the recommended amount of calories that a person at my weight and height should eat.

I signed up to do a trial for the boot camp which began this morning.  I was NERVOUS because I wanted to be able to keep up with everyone and I guess like everyone else, the unknown is scary.  Plus on TV, whenever heavy people go to a boot camp, they throw up the first time.  So I was scared this morning.  I didn't do much sleeping because I wanted to make sure that I woke up on time.  This boot camp meets from 5:45am until 6:45am Monday thru Friday in Greenbelt.  There were some things (ab work specifically) that were harder than others (weights), but I'm pretty proud that I went and pushed through the workout.  I'm tired and ready for bed, but sort of excited about doing it again tomorrow.  Maybe this change will be just what I needed to re-ignite the fire I need to continue on this journey.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Day 165: Week 25

A new week....

I just signed up for another 5k taking place on New Years Day (January 1, 2011) and I want to have a better time and better pace.  Tomorrow starts the formal outside training because I HAVE to do better, I just have too so that I don't look like this!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Day 159: WHAT??

I have been reading around the web and looking at information for Marathon Runners and those first timers interested in starting a training program.  Wanna know what I just read - some people train for years before they are actually able to run a full marathon.


Years huh?  I was not expecting to see that......that was totally not apart of the plan.  So me being authentic to me started wondering, "Seriously Rochelle, is this a realistic goal?  A 5k or 10k is completely different from a FULL MARATHON!"  I'm not quitting on the journey or anything (since I'm not a quitter anymore - I gotta keep saying it over and over because sometimes if you don't speak to your own self it's easy to fall back into a place where you've come from) but I'm totally a little more wide eyed about what I'm trying to accomplish.  So, now what?  What am I going to do with this information?

For right now, I think that I will keep walking/ jogging until I get to a place where I am running at faster speeds.  We will re-evaluate the situation at that point.  For now, a marathon in 2011 is still my focus, ok?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Day 158: Week 24

Sunday, November 28, 2011 is officially the beginning of week 24 of this journey.  This morning I went to a different Gold's - Crofton - and it was amazing!  It was bigger and they had way more machines than the Bowie location.  I'm even going to take some of their morning classes.  The only real down side is that it is a lot farther from my home than the Bowie location.

I have a couple of goals for this coming week.  There are a couple of ladies at the gym who get together at 5:15am and workout for an hour.  I'm going to join them as many days as possible (5:15am is way early, possibly too early to be at the gym already but we shall see).  Oh yeah, goals -

1.  Three outside runs with a minimum of 2 miles for each
2.  Contact the PG Runners Club to find out about training programs - I gotta get faster and run longer distances
3.  Cook 2 new receipts
4.  Engage in some physical activities everyday
5.  Try to get to bed by 1am every night (especially with trying to be at the gym by 5:15am)

I think that that is it for right now, but let's see how far I get with the above.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Day 156: Pictures

So I don't have all of the photo's just yet, but here are a few.
Race Attire
"Man, now this is an athlete outfit" 

This is me standing at 12th & F waiting for the shuttle
"I wonder if anybody else is as nervous as I am?"
Pre-Race photo opt with the Turkey Trot Turkey
Mile 3 Marker
"Thank You Jesus, this is just about DONE!"

Crossing the finish line
"Please Lord, let some air fill my lunges!!"
I don't think that it completely tells the story, but more are on the way.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Day 155: 5k Completed


Really that is enough said, but there is so much more to say.  This Thanksgiving day I am so thankful.  I've said it before and I will continue saying it, this journey has not been easy by any stretch of the imagination. I've wanted to stop, quit and throw in the towel; but, with the support and encouragement of others, I haven't.  Today I did the SOME (So Others May Eat) 5k in downtown, Washington, DC and it was an experience that I will never forget.

We got to the race site around 7:30am, mixed & mingled while watching the kids 1mile fun race and just sort of waited around until the start of the timed race.  So we lined up at the rear of the start line for racers.  The horn blew and everyone took off.  Because there were so many racers, it took us roughly 3 minutes of walking up to the start line before we were actually able to begin running.  There were so many people - people of all ages, sizes, various speeds, etc.  While jogging, especially in the beginning, there was a lot of dogging through the people to continue on.  I used the light posts as measuring sticks.  I'd run through three-to-four light posts before speed walking to catch my breath.  The leaders of the pack were passing us before I got to mile one and I couldn't help but watch them as they ran by.  There running pace was aspiring, but more than that, just looking at their faces resolved something within me.  Running is a sport/activity that is not for the faint of heart.  It doesn't matter your weight or height, anybody who runs is committed to the activity.  I couldn't help but stare at the ladies and gentlemen who were heavier than me, but continued jogging/walking regardless of their size.  It was really motivating for me that I don't have to use my weight as an excuse of why I can't accomplish any physical activity.  As we came to the 1.5miles marker, I could see the water station ahead.  I was excited because my mouth was DRY.  I didn't drink anything before the race because I didn't want to have to use the bathroom.  But how about the water station didn't have any cups!  Disappointment was written all over my face, but I couldn't stop, I had to keep going -thirsty and all.  Passing the half way marker was exciting because inside I knew that I WAS DOING IT!!  When I passed the 2mile marker something happened.  A nice lady by the name of Ann came along side me (during one of my walking breaks) and started talking to me.  Of course I can't ever pass up a good conversation, so I engaged with her, even though part of me didn't want to because I was focused on the task at hand - finishing this race with a decent time.  We ended our conversation with, "See you next year!" and I picked up the pace with a brisk jog.  I could see the finish line within my sights and knew that there was no stopping me.

Crossing the finishing line created a feeling that I can not describe.  I could beat myself up because I didn't run the entire time, but I won't because there are way too many things to be proud of.  I'm proud that I showed up.  I'm proud that I started.  I'm proud that I kept going.  I'm proud that even when I wanted to quit and cheat by turning around at mile 1, I didn't (LOL).  I'm proud that I worked hard to get to this point.  I'm proud that even though a lot of people said that I couldn't do this, I didn't let that discourage me from trying.  I'm proud that I haven't just talked about wanting to do this, but I'm actually doing it.  I have a lot more work to do, but today I am PROUD of Rochelle Juanita Elizabeth Barnes.

As I sit here and reflect more, you know what I didn't do while on the course........I didn't look back behind me once, not once.  We should never negate our past and everything that it involved.  But our past does not have to limit our present or future.  A song by Damita Haddon has been my theme song for the past few months - No Turning Back.  Not turning back has meant being open and honest about where I'm at as well subjecting myself to accountability & support in this area of my life.  I don't like accountability because it requires me to expose me, but it totally develops character.  The amount of support has been unreal & appreciated.  I finished the SOME race today with a time of 51:10 and a pace of 16:28.  Considering I haven't done much training outside on the road, that is GREAT!


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Day 154: T minus 1 Day Left

There's approximately one day left before my first official 5k.  This time tomorrow I will probably be just getting up to head downtown.  I'm experiencing a plethora of emotions that I'm not sure what to do with.  I'm nervous, excited, scared, excited, worried, excited....did I mention EXCITED?  The goal was to be able to run the entire race.  As it stands right now, I'm not prepared to run the entire thing, but you never know - once I get there and in the mix of things, that could totally change.

I was feeling pretty bad/down about the fact that I hadn't trained as hard as I could have so that I'd be prepared to run the entire thing, but after talking to my dad, he reminded me that the object is to set a goal and work to attain that goal.  This race will be another step forward to getting to my goal of running a full marathon next year.

I was in the gym this evening just thinking about how much support I've actually received over the past few months and I'm beyond grateful.  This journey includes not just me - there are sisters, brothers and a host of other people who are walking out this journey with me.  It blows my mind, but I'm so grateful.

Ok, now to bed but I feel a little too excited.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Day 149: One Week AWAY

Can you believe it?  We are officially one week away from my very first "Official Timed" race.  There are a lot of emotions that I feel.  Part of me is extremely excited.  Part of me is extremely nervous.  Part of me is plum scared.  I am really doing something that I have never done before and it feels good.  The crazy thing is - you'd think that my training would have intensified as I've gotten closer to the date, but I must say that it has been totally opposite.  I've only run once this week, but work and school have played a super huge role in while there has been a decline in my workout routine, but I'm not letting that stop me.

My race is with SOME (So Others May Eat).  I wanted to do more fundraising and raise more money for the cause, so I think that everyday I'm going to tweet about SOME and a link to their website.  I just sent out a another e-mail to potential donors to see if I can raise more money for the cause.  Also, I may squeeze in a fundraiser with Uno's in Bowie for Wednesday, November 24th.  Hummm, I wonder if I could pull off a successful event?

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Day 128: Seasons & Perspectives

Here in the DMV (District, Maryland and Virginia) area, we experience all four seasons - Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall.  Each season has its own colors associated with it, it's own temperature and it's own characteristics.  The seasons are clearly defined when we have gotten to the middle of them, but at the beginning and end it seems like they sort of interchange.  Like right now, the season is fall, but the temperature outside feels like summer although it is clearly fall.  I mention seasons because we experience them not only with the elements outside, but we experience them as it relates to our personal lives.  

If I had to choose the season that I find myself in right now, I'd have to say that I'm in the latter part of Fall and transitioning into Winter.  Time changes in fall, days become shorter but nights seem to be endless and the temperature changes from warm and comfortable to cold and intolerable.  Fall is also the time that things begin their transition of death - the leaves change a multitude of colors which is very beautiful but in the end leaves them falling from trees; flowers and grass begin the process of shriveling up into a pile of nothingness.  Then with winter everything dies - germs, plants, etc. as a result of the cold temperatures.  But even though things are sort of dark in the winter, the great news is that it never stays winter forever!  

Over the past 24 hours, I have cried more than I have in a very long time because everything seems to be going pretty awful right now in my life.  Work is bad, school is bad, working out has been bad and there has been no existence of a social life in my life. Honestly, as of 9pm last night, I was going to give up on everything because things just seemed hopeless and out of control.  I wanted to withdraw from school, I told one of my friends that I was quitting working out, I decided that I wasn't going to do the marathon and I was going to pack up my car and just leave.  Hey, who would miss me anyway is the question that I asked myself.  

There are plenty of people who are in more worse/dire situations than than I am, but my feelings are real and valid and I had to come to terms with what I was feeling.  I guess not only come to terms, but examine my perspective on things.  This journey has been very hard (I don't feel comfortable in saying long yet because it hasn't been long enough to deem it long) and it's required me to do a very intense introspective look at "Rochelle" and examine the why behind things that I do.  After a very long drive today with the windows down, music blasting and favorite shirt on I realized something - at the core of who I am, I AM OK.  I make mistakes and plenty of them, and it's ok.  I forget a LOT of things, and it's ok.  I don't think like most people, and it's ok.  It is a HUGE struggle for me to focus and stay on task with this mind of mine and it is ok.  Now God is not finished with me by any stretch of the imagination, but being different doesn't mean I'm bad or wrong.  I have to stop beating myself up on the inside because I don't fit the mold of what's considerd "Normal".  God knew exactly what he was doing when He created me and I trust and believe that it's all working for my good because I love Him and He refuses to stop loving and caring about me (and you too!).

I'm not quitting this journey.  I've invested to much into it and other people have invested to much into it for me to just throw that away.  Every encouraging word or time invested to working out with me or piece of wisdom shared has been appreciated.  With my renewed perspective, tomorrow I'll wake up to get ready for work, eat my oatmeal, pack my bag for the gym and be on my way knowing:
1.  I'm OK
2.  With the ups and downs of this journey, I'm really not in it alone
3.  Quitting is not an option (even when I want it to be)

Friday, October 15, 2010

Day 115: SOME

My first official 5k is less than 6 weeks away and I'm feeling not to confident that I will be ready to run/jog the entire thing.  I'll be participating in the SOME (So Others May Eat) 5k (3.1 miles) on Thursday, November 25, 2010 (Thanksgiving Morning), but  I'm still stuck at 2 miles.  I guess it's a hump that everyone encounters, but it's sort of frustrating that I'm not past this point and I guess the biggest part is I don't know how to get past this point - if that makes any sense.  I workout, I watch what I eat (for the most part - lol), I drink a gallon of water a day and I've made up my mind.........but seriously am I going to be able to run a marathon if I can't run 3 miles yet?  Am I setting myself up with unrealistic expectations too soon?  IDK, that' just something that I've been thinking about today.  Then, people who haven't been working as hard as I have can run faster and longer!!!  Granted, comparing myself to someone else produces no fruit whatsoever, but I still find myself doing it.  Hummmmm, ok time for homework.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Day 113: Is this normal?

Wednesday's are usually my "Go Hard or Go Home" days because I have the time to do it, but today.... Although I worked out, it didn't have the same intensity.  I went to the gym and ran on the treadmill and pushed myself but it still wasn't the same.  I'm transforming into an Athlete, but how I feel now compared to two months ago is different.  This just feels a lot different.  I have to push even more/harder to accomplish a simple workout task.  I wonder if this is normal.....hummmmm, is this normal folks?

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Day 112 (cont.): That's Right!

Today was one the money.  I woke up and went to Track Date.  The weird thing is that I feel like I can run faster, but at shorter distances.  I ate a great breakfast while doing homework and then ended up working a little over 12 hours today getting just about everything done.  That was freaking awesome because I had a boat load of work today.  I'm sitting here trying to do homework, but I'm too sleepy, so since I'm off tomorrow, I'm going to go to bed now and then completely focus tomorrow.  I think I need some prayer to get through this term and to get to a place where I'm running faster for longer distances.

Great day Rochelle, Great Day!  I'm proud that I focused as much as I did especially since the ADD doesn't always go hand in hand with focusing.

Day 112: The Journey

It has been 12 days since my last post, which seems like such a LONG time.  Today, Tuesday, October 12, 2010 is week 17 and day 112 of this journey.  I can honestly say that over the past 3 weeks my momentum for running/healthy eating/physical activity has severely diminished.  There are a number of reasons that that has happened.  The reasons aren't that important, but having a "restart" is.  Last night I had a dream that I was running faster and stronger.  Like I was a runner!  Even though it still only seems like a dream, dreams become reality one step at a time.

It's 1:51am.

I'm re-starting the routine first thing in the morning.  So, "Track Date" at 6am, breakfast at 7:45am, homework at 8:15am, work at 11am and then because it's Tuesday there's Bible Study and the gym after.  After the gym there's schoolwork and bed by 2am.  So the extra long days with very little sleep are starting again.  I was able to do it just 3 weeks ago, so I know that I can do it now.  I feel like I sort of failed because my momentum didn't stay at level 10.  But after thinking a little more about it........I haven't quit, so I'm not a failure.  I have approximately 5 and a half weeks to increase my milage and speed.  By the end of this month I will be jogging 4 miles (totally not an option).  By the race day, I will be running a 13 minute mile (I feel it in my bones cause I'm an athlete!).

With any journey there are highs and lows, joys and pains, clear direction and confusion.  With support and encouragement anything is possible, ya just can't give up on the end goal and the end goal for me is jogging 26.2 miles next year.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Day 100: September's Goals Are a Bust!

Today is September 30, 2010.  It is the last day of September, almost the conclusion of week 15 of this journey and the last week of this term in school.
At the beginning of this month, my goal was to be able to jog a 13 minute mile, jog 4 miles in under an hour, complete 45 hills in 45 minutes and finally weigh under 300lbs.  Looking at these goals and comparing them to were I am right now makes me want to say “SCREW GOALS, goals are for the birds” (LOL)!  After saying that and walking off the frustration of not actually accomplishing the set goals for this month, I’ve gotta stop and do inventory of each goal, evaluate what worked, what didn’t work and what I can do to change things around so that I get my desired results. 
Where am I know
13 minute mile
Although I didn’t get to a 13 minute mile consistently, I can do a solid 15 minute mile consistently (not just once in a blue moon).  So anytime I get out on the track or treadmill my slowest mile is 15 minutes.  If I really put a little extra pep in my step, I can get a 13 minute mile in, but it is not consistent so that’s why I don’t feel like this goal has been accomplished.
Jog 4 miles in under an hour
To me I can’t cross this goal off as accomplished because although I can do a combination of walking/jogging and surpass 4 miles in under an hour, I’m not solely jogging the 4 miles.  Between walking and jogging I can do just under 5 miles in an hour, but it’s still not there yet.
45 Hills in 45 minutes
Yeah, I’m no where close to this.  I think that I only did hills a hand full of times this month.  The most that I was able to get in was 25 hills and I felt like that was the hardest thing that I’ve ever done in my entire life (yeah that’s an exaggeration, but that’s how it felt at the time)!  
Weigh under 300lbs.
I know the phrase that a lady does not say how much she weighs, but I don’t care.  I’m 10lbs. away from accomplishing that goal.  At first I felt SUPER bad that I didn’t loose the last 10lbs. to say "Yes, I did it", but then I had to say to myself, “Rochelle, seriously, calm down!”  I’m at a weight that I was at like 10 years ago.  I can do things now physically that I’ve NEVER done!  Yo, (although it’s not visible to the naked eye, LOL) my muscles are cut like Super-Man, but show like Wonder-Woman’s (very lady like).  
So was September a complete wash out - Heck NO!  Yeah none of my goals were totally reached but I’m still a lot further along than when I started.  Without goals, you have no real tangible benchmark to compare where you were, where you are and where you are going.  These goals are helping me to get to where I’m going.  Do you know where I’m going?  I’m training to cross the finish line of the Marine Corp. Marathon in 2011, that’s where I’m going.  I don’t care who believe’s, I don’t care who supports, I don’t even care who jokes me - that’s where I’m going.  
I’m walking, running, jogging, crying, cursing, laughing, hurting, surviving and enduring on this journey of training the athlete within ME that will run a marathon next year.  As September concludes, I’m excited about October!  It’s time to go hard folks because I’m not ready to go home. 

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Day 89: Week 14

This week is week 14 and I've decided that I'm going back to "2aDays".  I feel like I feel better when I do them, I think better, I just function better.  Yeah, it's totally harder and requires major down/rest time but I've been feeling sort of lazy and out of sorts these past few days.

Oh yeah, tomorrow morning I'm going to do something new, something that I've never done - instead of my normal "Track Date" at 6am, I'm going to have "Neighborhood Time".  That's where I'll walk/jog/run on a route within my neighborhood/community verses on the Track or Treadmill.  I feel like this will help me to train for an actual marathon since they happen on the street as well, verses a Track or Treadmill.  I'm actually pretty scared because people will see me.  Yeah, people see me on the track, but this is different.  My neighbors will see me, people driving to work will see me, people on the metro bus will see me, people drinking their morning coffee will see me, etc.  I know..I know, I'm sort of absorbed with the idea of people looking at me or watching me, but I don't want to look like a goober.  But, looking like a goober or not, this is something that I'm not just trying, I'm doing this.

Week 14 will be a week of "2aDays", increased weights, no - meat, bread or sweets and 30 miles of walking/jogging.  It's going to be a rough week, will you pray with me (LOL, but I'm serious)?

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Day 86: So Amped

I didn't go to Track Date again this morning.  I actually woke up, but made myself go back to sleep.  I got up and finished a few projects, spent some time with an old friend who had a baby and then I went to the gym.

It's been a minute since I've taken any class and as a result, Body Pump and Body Attack were killers this afternoon.  Like seriously....I thought that I was going to die and be laid out on the floor.  But at the end of the classes I felt absolutely great, tired, but great.  I went into the locker room to weigh myself and I am 10lbs away from my goal this month.  I don't know, when I saw the number, I almost jumped up and clicked my heels together like Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz when she wanted to go home.

It feels good to work HARD at something and you see that there are positive results.  This is such a Beyond, Beyond moment for me.  If you only knew......if you only knew.  I'm not looking behind at my past anymore, I'm so excited about the future!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Day 85: The Choice

So I've been feeling like I need some extra motivation to keep pressing through this fog/funky place that I'm at right now.  There is a song that keeps speaking to me.  The song is by Damita Hadden called, 'No Looking Back' and the words really speak volumes - read um:

Verse 1
I am leaving this place now
Letting go of all my fears
Saying good-bye to the memories I hold dear
I can finally breath again
It's a new day
Fair well past
As I close this chapter I set free at last

I made up my mind
There's no turning back
The past is behind me
There's no looking back
I'm looking forward not behind
I've made a decision
I give you my life

Verse 2
Every step I take is new
I found courage to go on
Though its rough sometimes
I still have to be strong
I may have to walk alone
But the One who lives inside me
Is always there to comfort and to guide


Verse 3
I can see the sun breaking through the clouds
Lifting my hands cause I'm all right now
I can shout about it
I can laugh about it
I can talk about it


Aren't those words a great declaration of the decision that I've made in my life??  I LOVE MUSIC!!  It so speaks to my soul.   Here's what I've got to get better with - when I'm tired or frustrated with life, not to revert back to previous ways of handling  adverse situations.  With everyday, every hour, every minute, every second, I've got to choose what I'm going to embrace.  We all have a choice in everything that we do.  A choice to move forward and a choice to be stuck.  A choice to press forward and a choice to quit.  At the end of the day our choices determine how far we go.....I'm choosing life and the future, what are you choosing?

Monday, September 13, 2010

Day 84: Ok, I'm Tired

Yo, I'm tired and feel like I'm lacking the necessary motivation needed.  All I want to do is eat and sleep.  This morning I slept instead of going to Track Date.  This afternoon while others were working out and taking classes, I stood on the wall and looked at everyone while they worked out.  I did end up getting on the bike and I pushed to ride for 12 miles in 45 minutes.  I wanted to stop at 10 minutes in, but I kept going.  It's weird because I really was going to turn the machine off, but I kept it moving even though I didn't want to.  Maybe I'm more motivated than I thought.

Any who, I'm done, I'm going to bed now.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Day 83: Week 13

Week 13....Week 13....WEEK 13!!!!!

I actually don't know what to say honestly.  I am at a loss for words to use to describe this overall experience - which is an amazing feat.  Before I go into my goals and different things like that, I must say, "I CAN SEE IT".  When I started this journey, I had to keep saying what I wanted to do to sort of convince myself that I would actually run a marathon, oh but now, instead of only saying it, I can actually see it too.  Through the hurt hips, hamstring, feet, everything.....I can actually see myself crossing the finish line of a 26 mile race and not even be the last person (finishing is more important than time, but I can even see a faster time).  

Weeks 11 and 12 were pretty hard and I feel like I've slacked off my running pattern/routine and meal plans, but this morning I tweeted something that I am going to apply to this week.  I said, "I am declaring it, no matter how my reality looks right now, I can't allow the look of things to dictate my perspective of things".  Right now things look hard and impossible, but even though it is hard, this is something that I AM  making happen.   I will drink my water.  I will workout everyday (well minus today).  I will push myself to go further each day than I did the day before.  I will continue to blog this journey (even thought I've been horrible at blogging each day).  I will work hard and not engage in quitter thoughts and actions.  

Sometimes you have to encourage yourself and that's what I'm doing because I know that I CAN do all things through Christ who strengthens me. God wants us to be healthy and whole both spiritually, emotionally and physically and that is what I am choosing to be.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Day 79: Loose Fat

I'm just getting in from the gym and I feel a little blown.  I really worked out my arms and legs today but here's the kicker.....instead of nice lean muscle, all u see is a boat load of fat.  But it's not even tight fat, it's loose fat!  You can FEEL that the muscle in my arms and legs are really on point, but you can't SEE it!  It's like something is going on on the inside, but has not manifested to the outside yet.  Yeah.....yeah, I know you can't rush the process, but it still sucks!

Oh well......I'll keep working out and transforming into an Athlete and one day, the world will see!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Day 78: Going Hard but very sore

This morning I actually made it to Track Date, but it was very hard to jog.  I ended up walking a straight and jogging a curve.  I did do a total of 3.26 miles, but it was hard.  So after I finished I had to hurry to FedEx Kinko's to get something cut, then home to change and get ready for work since it was Pastor's Staff Meeting and our department was responsible for it this month.

I don't know what it was, but by the time I got to work, my hips started hurting so bad that I felt like I couldn't walk anymore.  Sometimes you gotta push past your feelings because I had responsibilities at work that needed to be taken care of.  After work I met a friend at hhgreg and saw someone that totally BLEW my life and night.  So at first I was just going to go home and go to bed, but after sitting in the car for an hour or so, I said to myself, "NOPE, THIS IS NOT AN OPTION!"  I went to the gym and put it in and you know hips feel so much better!

So now I sit here feeling pretty good that I didn't allow a negative experience to dictate my choice and my body feels way better now.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Day 77: 5 miles & 40lbs down!

This morning I was supposed to go to a bootcamp open house in Rockville, MD, but instead of my alarm clock being set for 6:15am, it was set for 6:15PM!  When I woke up at 8:30am I was really blown since I was supposed to be there by 7:45am.  No worries though because I was able to sleep a little longer (which was pretty good).

At the gym today, guess what my distance was?  Since you probably won't be able to guess I'll tell you.  Between walking and jogging I did a total of 5 miles.  Really I was done at 3 miles, but I had to push myself to go a little further than normal.  I still did more walking than actual jogging because my hamstring started hurting, but it was still really good.  I was so excited about my distance that the thought of riding the bike overwhelmed me and I just had to do it.  So I got on and started peddling, but soon my excitement turned to pain.  I think the bike is not my friend just yet.  Slimming down a little more is in order so that I don't hurt my womenhood.  I ended up staying on for 10 minutes and rode for 2.5 miles.  After the workout was done I weighed myself and it's official, I'm totally 40lbs. down.

By the way, just as a friendly reminder.........I'm turning into an ATHLETE!!!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Day 76: Week 12 (No QUITTERS Here!)

I have not blogged since last Tuesday.  I think that that is the longest time that I've gone without blogging since I've started.  Not much has happened actually.  Well, this past week was really hard to work out because of my work schedule and my allergies have been absolutely awful.  I mean awful.  There were a couple of days that I didn't want to go to work or do anything, but not working is not an option unless you are seriously ill because if you don't work, you don't eat (I was raised on that principle); and, since I like to eat, I have to work.

Ummmmmm, we are at week 12 of this journey, and you know what week 12 means?  It means that I'm not a quitter!!!!  I have been doing this thing (planning and training to run a marathon) for 12 weeks, which equates to 3 months.  I gotta repeat that, 12 WEEKS.  There have been some weeks filled with mountain top experiences and some weeks filled with horrible valley low experiences.  But whatever the experience, I haven't quit at it.  That means that I have to stop calling myself a master quitter because I'm not that anymore.  Even though I haven't quit at this, I've got to apply the same level of dedication, commitment and passion to other areas of my life as well - like school!

Goals for this week huh?  IDK (I don't know).  I haven't worked out today, but I think that engaging in some physical exercise everyday (for the rest of the week) is mandatory.  I'm sort of apprehensive since I didn't do that much this week.  I'm not sure how it is going to be to try intensifying my routines.  I guess we will just have to see, right?  Also, I want to start jogging outside of the track (starting with my neighborhood first to see how that goes).  So Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday will be "2aDay" Days and Tuesday, Thursday and Friday will be a regular exercise days.  Last thing "I'm An Athleteeeee!!"  Just needed to sort of yell that.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Day 71: Last Day of August

I did absolutely NOTHING today, NOTHING and you know what, I don't feel bad about it.  Wanna know why?  Because tomorrow is September you know what that means??  It means going hard without excuses.  It means working harder than I ever have even when I don't want too.  Ironically I'm not worried or afraid, I'm really looking forward to it.  I think it will be good for me to continue challenging myself to do things that I thought were impossible.

We'll see how tomorrow goes, but right now I'm about to do some homework.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Day 70: Why Stretch?

Track Date and Body Flow today.  I am going to commit to stretching before and after each Track Date because this morning my hips were on fire. I also need to come up with an alternative to running outside since the seasons are about to change and my allergies are horrible in the spring and fall.  I couldn't run one complete lap this morning, let alone a mile.  My guess the "why"is because they were cutting grass outside which sucks for me.  Mentally I was very hard on myself because I felt disappointed that I was not able to continue increasing the number of laps/miles that I'm able to complete.

But hey, this is all a process that has good days and bad days.  Today was both of those because although Track Date wasn't great, Body Flow was.  Actually the experience this time was 100% better experience. The teacher was very good as she explained every move/pose.  It was just good.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Day 67/68/69: Week 11

I have been working more, going out more and getting home later (too late to blog).  So I don't have any entries for the last few days and that's probably a good thing since my eating has been AWFUL with a capitol "A" and my exercising has been nothing to write home about either.  But that's ok because although today is a new day, so is tomorrow.  I feel bad, but not bad enough to beat myself up over my poor choices.

Week 11 huh?  I have to stop, do inventory and ask myself, "So Shelly, how do you feel about everything?"  My response even has me thrown for an unexpected loop because I'd have to say,  "I feel great!  Yeah some days are hard and frustrating, I'm still committed and excited that I haven't quit".

As a matter of fact, after much thought and consideration I've decided that I'm not coming back to this place ever again and I'm not ashamed or embarrassed to talk about it either!  I'm at a point where new clothes are just about necessary, but I've been afraid of purchasing new clothes with the thought or idea that this change may not last.  But, no more!  So, as my clothes become too big to still be somewhat presentable, I'm going to pack them up and give them away!  Ohhhh, such a big step........but totally a necessary step.

The beginning of September is during week 11.  September is the start of a new eating plan: no sweets, minimum carbs, very little salt and 1.5 gallons of water daily.  I realize that my body responds better without a lot of sugar, carbs and salt and I feel better when I get the water in.  I'm doing this because at the end of the month I need to be able to run a 13 minute mile and be able to jog 4 miles in under an hour.  Also, by the end of the month I'd like to be able to do 45 hills within 45 minutes.  Part of me things that I am setting myself up, but without goals you automatically fail right???  Here is an even bolder statement - by the end of the month I WILL weigh under 300lbs (actually I don't know how bold that is considering I'm not that far off from that).  Hey, I gotta go hard cause I'm not ready to do home.

You don't have to believe the above, just WATCH and SEE!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Day 66: Breathing Troubles

Every form of exercise today was madd HARD and instead of #goinghard, I #wenthome!  I got up on time to do to Track Date.  I got there and started, but for some reason I couldn't breath at all.  My breathing was like when I first started.  On one of the laps I felt my esophagus begin closing.  At that point I started thinking and was trying to figure out what was going on.  I realized that it was the freshly cut grass!  I'm allergic to grass and apparently the power of it this morning tried to overtake me.  But I decided that I like the idea of breathing so I got in my car and came home.  Then this evening I went to run hills.  Instead of running 30, I did 15 hills.  I had the same thing where I couldn't breath.

What in the world is going on with my breathing.  I feel like I was finally getting to a place where breathing was not an issue, I hope I'm not regressing!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Day 65: Hurt my Hamstring

I am so excited but I probably shouldn't be.  Today I overslept and missed Track Date, but when I did get up I got dressed and went over to the track.  Unfortunately they were cutting the grass and I couldn't stay because I'm allergic to freshly cut grass.  I went to the Gym and just sat in the car for a few minutes debating if I was going to go.  But I got myself together and walked in.  I was still feeling pretty defeated about the whole weight gain thing, but I headed to the treadmill to get it in.  I walked a half mile and then started jogging.  I wanted to jog 2 full miles non-stop, but while I was at 2.25 miles in, something happened.  Right below my left butt cheek but above my knee on the back side started hurting like I pulled something.  I asked and found out what it was, it was my HAMSTRING.  I hurt my HAMSTRING!!!  Like seriously that is an athlete injury that serious athletes' get.  Yeah, it didn't feel great because I started limping and couldn't jog anymore, but it's great to know that I've got athlete types of injuries.

By the way, I re-weighed myself and I was back at my previous weight, so the gain must have been a fluke.  Tomorrow is Track Date and Hills all the way.  At Track Date I'm getting in 2 miles jogging but a total of 4 miles and I am going to do at least 25 hills.

You know, I'm really starting to like this new life of exercise and better food choices.  This is my new life and I refuse to engage in a sedentary lifestyle like before ever again.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Day 64: WHAT!!!

I'm pretty upset right now actually.  This evening I just had to weigh myself because I "feel" heavier & the scale said that I've gained 6 pounds since last week.
This past weekend my eating was completely off, but was it enough to gain 6 pounds?  I guess so!  Yeah I know that 6 pounds really isn't that much, but I was only 3 pounds away from being 40 pounds down from when I initially started this journey.  But now I am 9 pounds away from accomplishing my goal for the month of August.  I'm trying not to beat myself up too much about it because weight goes up and down based on muscle or water retention, but I don't want to get into a regression posture.  So, tomorrow morning at "Track Date" I have to push myself harder and further than I ever have.  I want to do the 2 miles non stop tomorrow morning.  I have to do this.  I have to prove to myself that this whole thing has not been a fluke and 6 pounds does not define my efforts.  Also, at Body Pump I'm going to increase my weights and at Body Attack I'm going to try some level 2 exercises.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Day 63: Sort of Bored

Track Date was pretty good today. I jogged a little over 5 laps, so I know that doing 6 full laps non stop is really a possibility.  On another note, I avoided all school work like the plague! I just couldn’t get into it, but I have no choice, tomorrow I have to do everything that I committed to doing.  Today was supposed to be a "2aDay" but I didn't work out this evening and I feel sort of bad about that.  I don't know what I've got to do to get out of this small funk......I gotta figure it out. You know what it is, I’m bored again. 

I'm bored with work, bored with school, bored with working out (well not completely yet, but getting close).  I feel kind of restless.  That means it really time to pray and reconnect with God.


Sunday, August 22, 2010

Day 62: WEEK 10

In 2 more weeks I won't be able to call myself a quitter because going into week 10 of training for a marathon clearly dispels that notion.  Actually it's pretty cool to say that I haven't quit at something when it got hard.  I pushed and continued pushing.  So, what are my goals for this week?  I think that it will be beneficial to beak my weekly goals down a little bit more.  So instead of just the exercise stuff, I think that I want to include school and eating as well.  I'm not doing to good in school right now and that's primarily because I have not been as focused on it.  I haven't been diligent with completing my assignments nor have I been as engaged on the discussion boards, but those practices are ceasing now.  Since I'm no longer a quitter (or about to no longer be a quitter), I can't quit with school which is sort of what I've been doing.  I embraced the thoughts "This is too hard so what's the point anyway" and "School is for kids, I'm too old and struggle too much for this....this is for the birds!"  But if I continue thinking like that, I won't finish, I'll quit - totally unacceptable now!

So, for Week 10, these are the goals:
 - Jog 1.50 miles non stop (6 times around the track) at least three out of the four Track Dates
 - Complete 1 set of 30 hills this week (regardless if anyone else goes or not)
 - Take both Body Pump and Body Attack at least twice
 - Do 4 sets of 25 crunches daily
 - Do 4 Sets of 10 push ups daily
 - Consider (really consider) going on a walk/jog at the race site in DC

 - Minimum of 1.5 gallons of water everyday
 - Fruits, veggies and grains
 - No meat, no sweets and no bread
 - 3 meals and 4 snacks

 - Follow up with my tutor
 - Reach out to professors regarding last week and outstanding assignments
 - Post to discussion boards on Monday with daily followup
 - Take all tests no later than Wednesday
 - Make a genuine effort Rochelle

It looks like it is going to be an extremely busy week, but it can be done.  Oh yeah, I want to design a Dream Chasers logo for a T-Shirt as well as a T-shirt design for me and this journey that says "Athlete in Training.....the marathon, the journey" I think.  I'm still not sure, what do you think.  Tomorrow I'm going to have a vote.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Day 60/61: How to appreciate.

I didn't blog yesterday because I actually hung out with friends (I know, go figure) and got home really really late.  Yesterday was a "2aDay" Friday.  I got up and went to Body Pump - which was hard as the dickens because my body was already tired and hurting but I made it through.  No, you know what, I didn't finish the class because I had to leave early to go to the doctors.  Hummmm, the doctors huh?  We will have to revisit the doctors appointment at a later time because more stuff has to be done.

Because I didn't finish Pump, I went back to the gym to jog and did pretty alright.  I didn't jog any less than a mile at one time.  I have to build up my endurance so that I can jog multiple miles without being completely worn out, of which I was when I finished.

Today is Saturday and traditionally I'd do Body Attack, Treadmill and then Pump, but I just couldn't do all of that today.  I did Attack and gave it all that I could but when the class was done, I was done!

Although the workouts have been good and I accomplished a major goal this week, it doesn't feel like I thought that it would feel.  Maybe I'm being extra melancholy about it all or had unrealistic expectations..... I don't know......... I thought it would be this overly joyous time in my life but it doesn't feel like that.  I said to myself, "Self, maybe when you can jog two miles or even three miles or loose an additional 14lbs so that you would have lost 50lbs, maybe then you'll have that great feeling".

But as I sit here now and type up my thoughts I'm reminded that appreciation does not begin with the large things.  Appreciation begins with recognizing the quality, value and significance of the small things
involved in any task that we participate in.  CONVICTION!!  So it's not a "feeling" that I should be looking for.  It's recognizing the hard work, effort and determination that I'm putting into this dream and feeling good about every step that I take.  Looking at the value that every workout and every run and every healthy meal choice plays into the running this marathon.  I don't feel good, but I'm doing GREAT!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Day 59: Abundance of Support

I think that this may be another day that I am completely speechless.  Why you asked?

I'm speechless because of all the support that I've received.  I started this thing thinking that it would be me and God working together to accomplish this goal because some of the negative comments, but that so has not been the case.  Tonight for example, we did Hills at the Sports & Learning Complex.  The goal was to run up and down a certain hill 30 times in 30 minutes.  Now for clarity, this is no little hill, it is steep and long.  We did it last week and I was only able to do 10 of them, so I came into this thing not slightly apprehensive - I was VERY apprehensive.  Towards the end, I was really struggling and you know what........the entire gang did the last three with me so that I could get to 20 (I didn't get to 30, but I did 10 more than I did last week).  Like who does that?  Everyone was tired and had completed there hills, but decided to run with me so that I wouldn't have to do it alone.

That is just one example of what I mean by support, but there are way more examples that I could use.  I'm appreciative, floored, flabbergasted, grateful, honestly, I had to cry tonight because I was overwhelmed at all of the different instances of people supporting me through this journey.  Just very grateful.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Day 58: Continuing PUSHING

Because of rain and tiredness, I didn't make Track Date this morning which is kind of disappointment, but today has been a pretty eventful day none the less.  My first appointment was a dentist appointment to get two cavities filled.  I don't like going to the dentist office and today's experience justifies my reason.  She numbed my mouth and then gave me multiple shots.  While she was going it, I literally started crying because it HURT!  She said that I was doing a good job, but all I know is that I was in pain.  Needless to say, I got through that experience and was off to my next destination - a small race with the Tidal Basin Run Group.

They race every 3rd Wednesday of the month on Ohio Drive, NW (inside of Hains Point near the FDR) at 12:00pm.  There are two races - a 1500 meter race (little under a mile) and a 3000 meter race (little under two miles).  While trying to find the location, I was totally lost and thought about just going home.  But I ended up finding the meeting location and stayed.  My emotions were trying to get the best of me because as more and more people arrived, I noticed a few things:

1.  I was the only female (three other ladies eventually showed up)
2.  I was the only black person (another black female showed up right before we were about to begin)
3.  I was the largest person out there
4.  I was the youngest female out there

I felt worried, scared, concerned and did a lot double thinking my desire all at the same time.  It's weird because you'd think I'd be excited to be  running with a group of established runners, but I wasn't initially.  I didn't want to look like a goober.  So everyone lined up and the shotgun went off and so did all of the runners (including me).  To my surprise, these 40+ year old runners were super fast and focused.  I jog on the track and treadmill pretty consistently.  I didn't realize that jogging on the street was as difficult as it was.  I'm going to have to practice that more often.  I placed last in the 1500 meter race; but guess what - I FINISHED.  The stats are actually published in The Washington Post newspaper, but here is the link to the race results (pretty cool huh)?

After than I came home and got ready for another doctors appointment.  But, as the novocaine began wearing off, a migraine headache was on the horizon since my tooth pain was so great.  I went to the doctors, got something to eat and went to Target to get pain medicine.  The GREAT DEBATE - go home to go to bed, or go to the gym for Body Pump & Body Attack.  Which do you think I did?

BODY PUMP & ATTACK WON!  By the way, they were extra hard today because I totally did not feel good.  Maybe it was the adrenaline, maybe it was the pain medicine kicking in....I don't know what it was, but I was able to push through all the pain my body felt and complete the classes.  I'm actually pretty proud of myself because I did things today that I didn't want to do, but they were all in my best interest to participate in.  They all get me closer to my goal of running a marathon next year.  By the way, the route from today is the same route that I will be running on Thanksgiving Day in the SOME (so others may eat) 5k race.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Day 57: 1.25Miles non-stop!

So my goal for this week has been to run around the track 3 full times, and I did that yesterday.  Today, however, I did something that was completely unexpected.  I jogged a full 1.25 miles NON-STOP!!  Do you know how awesome that is?  Not only did I get to my goal, but I surpassed it by a lot.  After the jogging, I walked some and then jogged more.  It was hard, it hurt and it was painful......but it was freaking AWESOME at the same time.  Absolutely AWESOME!!

Today was a hard day at work, I mean really hard and I don't know if that was the motivation behind pushing myself harder than ever before or what.  I didn't make track date this morning and I don't have a good reason why.  I laid in the bed looking at the alarm clock buzzing but I had absolutely no desire to get up, so I laid there which means I missed a 4 miles morning workout.  Missing the evening workout yesterday and then "Track Date" this morning really puts behind in reaching my goal of 30miles this week.  So, I'm not sure now if I'm going to get it, but I'll continue trying to make it.

I'm an athlete (well, turning into one)!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Day 56: Closer than EVER!

I did NOT want to go to "Track Date" this morning, but I did anyway.  And guess what I did this morning?  I jogged 3 full laps and a quarter NONE STOP!  Do you know how exciting that was?  Not only did I push myself further than I ever have, I did it with no one else there.  I mean none of my friends were at Track Date this morning, but it was cool.  Although I missed everyone, I realized that I couldn't stop pressing forward because everyone else had other obligations.  I'm not going to be able to go work out this evening because I have.......a date!  I know, I know, exciting right?  I'm pretty excited.  I guess there are other benefits to this journey, huh.  Well, more to come later!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Day 56: Week 9 (Floored)

I think that I say it just about every week, but I must continue saying it, "FLOORED!!  Who would have thought that we'd be at week!"  Ok weeks 1 & 2 yeah.............but week 9!  That's 2 months and one week!  I haven't quit and I've maintained the workout intensity.  You know what that means right?  I officially can no longer be classified as a quitter.  Well, maybe I'll give myself 3 more weeks before I make that declaration because that will be 3 months into the training.

Today is Day 1 of the next two weeks of August Intensity.  What does August Intensity mean?  It means for the next two weeks "2aDays" are a must.  Also it means that I will be carefully watching what I eat and intensifying my morning "Track Date" time.  Right now I can jog two laps around the track without stopping, so by the end of the month I need to be able to jog a complete mile non-stop with no walking.  That means this week I have to do three times around then the following week 4 times around.  Seriously, I think that I can do it.  Although today was the beginning, I didn't work out at all.  I had to be at work at o'Dark 30 this morning so I couldn't go to the track and then this evening I didn't go.  For some reason I had this pain in my knee that woke me up at 4am.  It hurt to bend and it hurt to keep it straight.  Anything that I did that required me to move my left leg caused an ungodly pain.  As a result, I chose not to do any exercise which puts me behind reaching the 30miles this week goal.  But that's ok, I'll make it up starting tomorrow.

I have a boat load of homework to do.  I have some sketches that I haven't done yet, but that's partly because I need to read and re-read that assignment.  Tonight was supposed to be a long night, but I'm so tired that I'm going to bed and will work on everything tomorrow and send it in.  I tell ya, I've got to get better with school.  It's costing me too much money to be slacking.  It looks like weekly goals are in order to avoid consistently falling behind.

Geeze, I have so much to learn but have really come so far.  The journey is hard work but I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that it will be worth it in the end.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Day 55: Highs and Lows

Saturday's are always tough days because I do Body Attack, Cardio and then Body Pump all within a 3 hour time frame.  I was late, so I only got in a half hour at Attack.  When the class ended, we did crunches and I also got in a little over a mile on the treadmill.  Then I was only able to stay for a half hour at Pump because I had to get my Goddaughter to Football Practice.  I went to the grocery store because I knew that I needed some food in the house, but I didn't get nearly enough to get through the next two weeks so I'll have to go back tomorrow (but first I gotta plan out my meals).

I'm disappointed sort of because I didn't get to 30 miles this week of walking/jogging, but I'm not disappointed at the same time because I did get to 27 miles which is the most that I've done in a week so far. Tomorrow is the first Sunday this month that I won't be able to do a "2aDay" since I have to be at work by 7am.  Actually it will be like this for the rest of August.  That just means that I will not get to take Friday off and I will have to work really hard every other day.  We have hills twice this week, so that should make up for not being able to work out tomorrow morning.  Tomorrow evening, however, I plan on getting in at least 4 miles (which is the bear minimum going forward when I walk, jog, run, etc.).

Man, the next two weeks is going to be intense and super hard.  But if it wasn't hard, then the reward wouldn't be as valued.  Lord would you give me the grace to push through being tired or sore or even frustrated/discouraged please?

Friday, August 13, 2010

Day 54: Determination

Man, temptation was all around me today.  It was raining this morning so I didn't get up for Track Date (plus I was plum tired) and I didn't go to the gym this evening because I promised my goddaughter that we could hangout and do fun stuff tonight instead of the gym or working out.  She is staying with me this week and has been a real trooper through my exercise routines.

The kicker has been that I didn't go to the grocery store.  As a result, my meals have not been planned out as they normally would be.  So this morning I had two individual bowls of Raisin Brand Crunch Cereal.  I don't think that that was bad, it's just that I probably should have only had one verses two.  Then for lunch I had a Stoffer's Chicken and Vegetables Pasta meal bag.  The portion size is meant for two and I'm proud that I actually split it in half and will be able to have the other half for lunch tomorrow.  Along with that I had a Caesar salad.  I could have done without the croutons though.  Then we got these popchips from the store.  They are not fired or baked.  It's weird because they sort of tasted like styrofoam with bbq seasonings.  I ended up eating the entire bag throughout the course of the day.  Then I went to a picnic and ate watermelon (of which I'm not sure if I am allergic to it or not) and ate part of a hotdog.  Yeah, I really wanted a hotdog, but it turns out that wasn't all I thought that it would be.  I don't have to waste calories or destroy the hard work that I've put in because 9 times out of 10, the good taste of something is only temporary.  There was cake and cookies and a lot of other delicious things that I could have consumed, but at the end of the day, if I ate them, a lot more work would have been required in order for me to burn enough calories so that my hard work would not be impacted.

Yeah, sometimes a sweet delicious treat is necessary or warranted, but today was not the day.  I will probably have something delicious tomorrow because starting Sunday, I will not be eating any meats, bread or sweets.  Not that I am now, but I'm increasing the intensity of this journey for the remainder of August (2 more weeks) to see if I can get to running a full mile by the end of August.  That is the goal, a full mile by the end of August and be down a total of 50lbs.  It may seem like a far stretch, but it's not.  That means that I need to be able to run an additional 2 more times around (which would give me the mile) the track and I need to loose another 18lbs by the end of the month.  I think it's doable.  The only thing that I can do is try.  If I don't make the mark it's not because I didn't try and I'll be a lot closer than I would if I didn't try.

It's official, I've been lit on fire by the determination bug to meet this goal.  I can do this..........I will do this, crap, I MUST DO THIS!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Day 53: Lack of Food

I need to go grocery shopping because today was an awful eating day.  Not awful in the sense that I ate the wrong foods, it was awful because I was just starving because I didn't have any food in the house (which is not a good place to be when you are really watching your intake).  Today is the type of day that I was ready to eat anything in sight and not care about all of the hard work that I have put into this thing.  But I came to my senses real quick!

First, I made a breakfast drink/smoothy which did not turn out so well.  I used ice, water, blueberries, banana and cucumber.  It didn't taste that bad but it ended up making my stomach hurt but I didn't have anything else to eat (so I thought) so I went to work starving.  I found a cereal bar and ended up eating that but I couldn't get myself together at work.  It was as if I was in this fog that would not lift so I came home and searched through every cabinet and shelf.  I found a can of tuna fish and got excited.  I put extra seasonings in it thinking that it was going to be extra good.  Turns out that with all of those "extra" seasonings, it was pretty not good but I still ate it.  I ended up eating a good solid meal with the Sugar Hill Gang at Qudoba's and had a really good time laughing and talking.

Track date has been rough all week and today was no different.  The air was mad thick and made it harder to breath.  Although I really believe that God healed me of asthma, it was still a slight challenge (but that could be more mental than anything else) today.  Tomorrow I HAVE to jog 2 full laps around and push myself to go further for as long as I can.  It's like I loose momentum when I go for some time and then stop and it's hard to get it back.  My body feels good (although I'm still sort of tired) so I have to keep it up

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Day 51/52: Just Tired

I didn't blog yesterday because I was tired beyond tired.  We worked out yesterday morning, but when I laid down for my am nap, I couldn't get up.  Every part of my body was in intense pain and I couldn't seem to wake up, so I stayed home and actually stayed in the bed all day.  I only got up to cook something to eat and to use the bathroom.  I've never felt like that before and the only thing that I could do was sleep.

Track Date was much better today.  It was still hard, but my body didn't hurt the same way.  The goal was to go around 16 times which equates to 4 miles.  I didn't go around 16 times, but after track time and then sprints, I did a total of 4 miles.  I went to Body Pump and Body Attack this evening and they were extremely hard!  I really didn't think that I would be able to get through them, but I did and now I have that overwhelming tired feeling again.  I know that this is supposed to be mind over matter, but at what point is that not the case.

Oh, guess what......I'm down 34lbs.  I don't see it yet, but it's pretty cool that the numbers on the scale are decreasing verses increasing.  I'm excited, I think.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Day 50: 1/2 mile + Sprints

Yo, today was not a normal Track Date.  No, not normal at all.  The only instructive was to run, no walking around a few times, simply run.  When I had my stride going, I did a little more than 2 laps around with no breaks.  That's a MAJOR achievement and was part of the established goal for this week.  It wasn't easy by any means.  I kept saying "Mind over Matter" but thought to myself, "My matter is really speaking to my mind and I'm tired!"  At one point I stopped talking to myself and just ran but got to the point where all I could do was walk.  Then when I thought that we were done, we ended up having to sprint (running as fast as we can) the curve. Because I didn't finish the entire curve, we had to do sprints (on the straight) multiple times.  Honestly, although it was hard, it was pretty fun.  There were girl soccer players sitting on the bench and they actually started cheering and encouraging us to go faster, it was cool.  I have not sweat so much in my entire life, but I guess that's a good thing.

This evening I went to the gym and now I am plum exhausted.  My body hurts and I'm tired.  My legs have never felt like this before.  I'm dreading walking upstairs to get to my bed. I still have more to say, but my eyes keep closing so good night all!

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Day 49: Week 8 (that's 2 months)

We are entering week 8 of training to run a marathon next year and I am floored.  Absolutely blown away that I'm still doing this.  That is 2 solid months of this training.  Although I've come a long way, I have to intensify the training because I really want to loose more weight.  Loosing weight, although was not my initial focus, it so necessary at this point because it will help me run better and faster. I gotta be able to run better since I am turning into an athlete (LOL).  My "Five 2 Strive 2" haven't changed, I just need to do better at doing them, especially taking the vitamins.

School has started back up, so I want to do better with staying on top of my school work while also maintaining the intensity of the work outs.  Like now, I am so tired, but I still have homework that needs to get done because I am not failing any classes this term.  I will be back on the deans list (GPA of at least 3.75) this term because I am more than able to do it.

This morning I had a Track Date and only did 2 miles (which is 1 mile less than my required min.) because it was mad hot outside and my pants kept falling down anytime I'd jog (LOL).  I went back to the track this evening and I don't know if it was because I was tired or had just eaten but my legs felt like a ton of lead.  I did one full jogging lap, but after that I'd walk or jog every other straight  and curve.  I got in 4+ miles, but it was totally hard.  I realized that if I am going to be out by myself, I HAVE to have music.  It helps keep my pace and motivation high.  This weeks goal is to do 30 miles and to jog a full lap and a half multiple times.  That's all!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Day 48: Went Home....sort of

I didn't do a "2aDay" today, but I went to the gym and did Body Attack and treadmilled a 5k in under and hour.  I'm getting much better at all of this stuff.  After work I came home to take a nap because my head was killing me.  We have an event tomorrow so I had to get things ready which sort of prevented me from going back to the track before it was extra dark.  So I went hard this morning and but went home this evening.  I have to stop condemning myself when I don't go as hard as I think that I can.

I didn't think that it was safe to go to the track at 10pm, but I drove by just to check it out and guess what....there were people out here and it was lit up very well, so maybe it's not too late to go.  I was thinking about getting a membership at Planet Fitness since it is 24 hours and only $10 per month (not a bad option for when I get off late but still want to work out).  IDK if I'm going to do it, I have to see.  Of course there is more that I have to say, but...............

Friday, August 6, 2010

Day 47: Accomplishment

I just spent over an hour reading through my blog and I gotta declare - I really have accomplished something.  Physically, I am just blown away!  When I first started, I was only able to go around the track 4 times. FOUR TIMES!!  And within those four times, I couldn't breath.   In one of my posts I said that I wanted to be able to completely jog around the track (secretly I thought that that was a far stretch of the imagination) and I can do that now.  Not only can I do it, but I am doing it multiple times.  This whole thing worth feeling good about.

I was feeling sort of down a few minutes ago because I didn't get a chance to work out today.  But not working out for one day this week does not negate all of the hard work that I've put into this journey.  I've lost weight, my breathing is better, I'm faster and I'm not ashamed!  Today my Godfather was commenting on my weight loss and I replied with, "Oh, it's really not that much yet, it's not anything worth making a big deal about" and his reply helped me put this in better perspective.  He said, "Get a steak or a slab of fat that weighs the same amount that you've lost and carry that around for a little while and then come back to me."  I understood.  It's ok to feel good about the good things that I've achieved.

The struggle for me is that I don't want to feel good and it turns out that everything is temporary and I have to do it all over again (because we've been down that road before). IDK, I guess I've just gotta know that it's ok to feel good about each accomplishment.