Biometrics. More Like Bite My…

Yeah, not gonna lie, I was not amused with the outcome of my biometrics results from work.

Some of you saw on Facebook how I went to be assessed on Wednesday as part of this ongoing study for my job. We are given a survey and do various blood work and stuff for them to track, once a year for four years. Not sure if there is a “point” or if we’re simply tracking and will use the data later. Yes, I’m on the Wellness Committee, who designed, sponsored and acquired the grant, but my brain is all mushy. I’m studying for one of my two license exams this year, we’re pending a new accreditation at work (AKA cleaning and stress abound), I’m trying to adjust to a gym pattern while feeding myself quality ingredients and well stuff. Yes, stuff.

964

Glad to get these things off my chest. Today was a massive cleaning day at work and ANYTHING personal was to be removed. Nothing in our drawers or on the desks or on the walls. I now sit inside a plaster prison cell with chipped paint. At least my bookshelf looks spiffy with all my properly labeled binders.

I’m off topic. The assessment. I was excited for this procedure actually. In my mind I have been working out, I have been doing a reasonable job with the not going out to eat and I’ve been generally happy. Looking at most of the results, this is true. My blood pressure has come down (in my world) and is almost back under 100! My resting heart rate it good, my cholesterol has improved as has my sugar levels and all that other fun stuff. Improved since my assessment at my gym in November if you’re curious as to when I’m referring. Want to know what pissed me off though? Yes, I swore, because it’s accurate.

I’VE GAINED 10 POUNDS SINCE JANUARY

All I have to say is…I better be knocked up with the second coming of Jesus to explain this nonsense. In all reality, I don’t know what happened. Look at the photos below. In January I weighed around 150-152, see the photo from Commitment Day? I look it too. Next to it, the photo from the indoor Tri a few weekends back. According to my weigh-in I am now at 162! What?! What?! What?!

Sizes

I don’t see the 10 pounds added. In fact I think I look better. OH and don’t tell me it’s muscle. It realllllly isn’t muscle. It takes longer than a month for that to develop and I don’t do weight lifting.

So, I’ve committed myself to getting back up there with the working out. I used to burn hundreds, even over 1,000 calories in a night at the gym. Lately, it’s a few hundred. Not bad, but not great. Need to keep moving forward. Here’s what I knocked out:

Monday: 45 minutes of Zumba
Tuesday: 30 minutes of stair-climber and 60 minutes of yoga
Wednesday: 60 minutes of strength-tone (weights!! Yikes)
Thursday: 50 minutes of water aerobics

This weekend I am set to do my 5 By The 5th. Will it be a 5K or a 5M? Taking your bets NOW, don’t delay. Here’s a spoiler alert…I’m sore as crap right now and can’t laugh without wanting to cry and rub my belly. No pain no gain?

In other fitness world news. I am addicted to Twitter chats. No joke. I think they’re the greatest thing since sliced bread. In the previous week I’ve chatted about dancing (#LiveWithFire with #Reebok) and pillows (#BedMates with #Technogel). I also enjoyed tweeting it up at the Lake Erie Monsters’ game Saturday! (#AliveInCLE)

76012_10101366862798024_1777350456_n

How is everyone else doing in the world of fitness? How do you deal with upsetting news? I’m off to bed…peace…I should have a fun recipe for you in the morning!

360 Days

A full circle is 360 degrees, but a full year is 365 days. Saturday marks the 1 year anniversary of my EP Study and Ablation. Part of me feels like it was a lifetime ago I was wheeled into the room and woke to my heart feeling as if it really will beat right out of my chest. A year of so many changes. Things I’m still adjusting to as the happen, things I can’t even predict. My life changed forever that day and I still struggle with the mental and emotional repercussions.

thumbsup.jpg

It still floors me when I sprint (by foot, by bike, whatever) and I don’t end with the feeling I will choke. It amazes me I can drink coffee and pop without getting dizzy. It scares me when I feel a “hiccup” and have to remind myself, it is normal and now thanks to the procedure it is only one hiccup, instead of many many many leading to feeling dizzy and needing a nap.

Truth be told, I feel guilty for my body still being a stranger to me. I don’t understand my cardiovascular system anymore. I don’t understand my stomach as I adjust to strange dietary allergies. So few people can relate or understand what I am going through…and I feel guilty for talking about it. I feel boring for talking about it. I know everyone would rather hear all the glitter and rainbows, but things aren’t always what people want. I’m not depressed, I just feel like there are things going on I can’t talk to anyone about. I don’t want to hear “I understand confusion” I don’t want to hear “You’ll be OK”. I want someone who has the EXACT same situation…or someone who will say “I really enjoy you sharing these things with me”. And not someone I pay to listen. Haha.

The biggest change has been my view of life and love. For so many months leading up to it, and in the months following all I knew were numbers and figures on papers. What percentage this what percentage that and everything in between. I grew so tired of my life in numbers. What good did it do me to have such “great stats” when I wasn’t allowed to actually run or jump or skip or play? What good did a finish time do me when I tore my leg? How important where the miles, when I would have given anything to take my dog out on her leash again?

I still look forward to my events, and I still want to take care of myself…but I hate trying to manipulate the numbers and comparing myself to others. I find no joy in it anymore and I certainly am not motivated by it all. Maybe it’s a good thing my only partnership this year is with Zensah. I am free to do as I please and move about the cabin. Fun run 5k? I’m there. Zumba class? I’m there. Hiking with friends or a casual bike ride? I’m there. Medals and flashy crowds are great, but I keep losing the message some where in the mix. I spent the previous 360 days trying to “get back to normal”, never asking myself what that was or how I would know it when I arrived.

Everyone needs goals, and I know in the past I cherished my goal races. When I was out last season though, it wasn’t the medals or the shirts or the PRs I missed. It was the stories and the friends. I want to fall down in the mud, I want to tell impossible jokes in the middle of the night, I want to see someone’s toe nail fall off. OK I don’t want the last one. I do want to smile in pictures and play “name that trail”. I just want to feel at home again. Maybe my competitive nature will return. Maybe it won’t? After all…

It’s about an active lifestyle…not an elite performance

8 Race Day Preparation Tips for Runners

Happy Monday friends! It is the last week of the month. How many people are floored by the fact we’re approaching the 3rd month of 2013. Yikes. I’ll let you sit on that a moment…then today I have a fun guest post. A little like last week’s I simply liked the tips and am reminding people how to get back to basics, since that’s where I am with my training again. Ken’s piece gives a different view on how to train and the way you should move your body. I know over the past I’ve grown more into minimal shoes and short/quick turnover. Here is a view for those believing a longer stride is their cup of tea. Oh and Ken does link to UltraSlide, but let me ask you something…have you ever used one? It is seriously a dream of mine to own one…haha. Anyway…away we go to the post…

8 Race Day Preparation Tips for Runners

Whether you’re training for a half-marathon or a full on racing competition, as a serious runner you cannot afford not to be primed for race day. Starting a regular workout program now and putting your training first should be a priority. Even if you think you are in the best shape of your life, you can improve your performance as a runner by prepping now for race day.

Establish your running stride. Many runners make the mistake of thinking their natural stride will get them through a race. But actually this stride may not be as efficient on your body’s energy reserves during a long distance race. Take the time to lengthen your stride as you do your practice runs. Reach out further with your legs and arms to increase the distance that each stride has, for improved time and efficiency.

Increase running resistance. While you may be used to running for up to an hour at a time or more, your race may require you to run for several hours or all day. This means you will need to increase your resistance by increasing your time each practice session. You will also need to condition your breathing and body strength. Add five-minutes to each timed running session each week, until you can comfortably run for up to 3 hours without stopping.

Choose the right shoes. The most important racing elements, besides physical strength and endurance, is having shoes that fit right and support your most precious body parts – your feet. This means getting fit for running shoes that are the correct size, width, and structure for your feet. Don’t wait until a few days before the race to buy your shoes. Get them and break them in at least two-weeks before race day.

Energy boosting diet. In terms of your body’s ability to run for longer distances and times, you will want to focus on a diet that includes plenty of protein and vitamin rich foods. This will help you to have more energy and strength reserves when you feel low during the race.

Strengthen your body. In addition to getting enough rest and eating right, you need to work on some strength training outside of running. This primes all your muscle groups for the running event ahead. Use kettle weights or resistance bands to tone your arms, legs, and back muscles. Take calcium supplements or add more dairy to your diet for strong bones and muscles.

Go the distance. In addition to being stronger, you will need to prep your body for the increased time you will be running. Take the time to add a quarter-mile per week to your running routine, so that by race-day you will be ready.

Track your heart rate. Your heart will be taking on additional stress while you prepare for your race. Wear a heart monitor and get yourself into a comfortable rhythm as part of your physical fitness routine. You never want to increase your heart rate too rapidly, which can cause you to experience fatigue and possibly do damage to your heart.

Breathe easier. Your breathing rate and the depth of your breathing has much to do with your ability to run for long distances in a marathon. Take time for meditation that includes deep breathing exercises to expand the lungs and increase capacity.

About the author: Kennith Campbell writes about running and other fitness and training topics.  Kennith is a writer for ultraslide.com.