Thursday, November 11, 2010

Going back to what works... for me.

There are a lot of things I know. There are a lot of things I don't know. For instance, I know that I cannot work-out my way thin. It's just not possible, I know because I've tried. 80% food/20% exercise is completely true (darn trainers know everything). I know that I cannot starve myself thin. I know this because I just did 2 weeks on some ridiculous diet that was virtually vegetables and protein shakes (blech!!). Sure, I lost 17 lbs., but here I am 2 weeks later and 10 of those stupid lbs. are back. I know that my weight is a battle I will struggle with for the rest of my life. There is really no getting around that. My 78 year old grandma lost 100 lbs. last year (by eating 1000 calories or less a day). It was the 3rd time in her life she's lost 100 lbs. I know that I don't want to keep losing the same weight again and again and wake up at 77 years old and decide that's when I'm going to make it work. No no no. I know that I've been wasting time deciding how I'm going to eat (all while stuffing my face with all the things I shouldn't be eating). I don't know why. I don't know why I treat junk food better than I treat friends. Sure, it's always been there for me... but it's like a toxic friend. One who is around just to cut you down and make you feel terrible about yourself so they can feel better. Well, I do know this. It has to end. Now. I'm going back. Back to Weight Watchers. Sure, there are people out there who don't agree with it or can't seem to make it work for them long term. I'm not one of those people. I've lost a very large portion of those 127 lbs. on WW and I know it works. I know that when I'm following WW, I don't feel deprived and I certainly don't feel guilty working one of my indulgences (like a beer or glass of wine) into my day. I know that there are 1,000's of people who have made WW work for them for life. I am going to be one of those people. No more starving myself or floundering around in mediocrity. No, no. This is where the road gets rough, but where I roll up my sleeves and get dirty dirty (in the good way).

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

It really is the little things....

Sometimes all I need is to be reminded of how far I've really come. That's what keeps me going. It's especially nice when I've fallen back into a rut and can't seem to climb back out of it.

Last night I decided I would go check out the clearance at Avenue. If you don't happen to know what Avenue is (I hate you... hahaha kidding), it's a clothing store for plus sizes. There was a time when I would shop at Avenue and I was close to the top end. I was wearing a size 26/28 top and trying desperately to not buy a size 30 pant (that's size 30, not waist 30). Those were the days where I wanted to hide. Oh wait, I did hide. I wore baggy clothes and only dark colors and hoped that I would blend in as much as possible. I was sad and miserable. But now I'm done hiding. I wear bright colors (sometimes) and clothes that fit. Oh, back to my story... so there I was in Avenue grabbing shirts and pants in all the wrong sizes. I don't wear a 22/24 top anymore and I certainly don't wear a size 22 jeans. Nope, not me. After changing most of my clothes down several sizes, I decided to try a pair of 18 jeans. Slid them on... and.... TOO BIG! Aaaahhh. I did a super happy little dance in the dressing room and then went and grabbed myself a pair of 16's. I didn't really have high hopes. I mean, come on... a 16. Me? In a 16? It just didn't seem like something that would happen. But I tried them and guess what? Oh, you've probably figured out by now that they fit! Perfectly. I almost cried. I have such a hard time seeing myself as smaller because, well, I've been big(ger) for as long as I can remember. In seventh grade, I remember a specific pair of shorts I wore to school (why my mother let me leave the house in them is beyond me), but they were jean shorts with this hideous flag fabric trim and they were a size 14. In seventh grade I wore a size 14. So, here I am... 20+ years later and finally getting close to that size again.

Maybe that's the little push I need to get me out of my rut. Well, that and the fact that it's winter so no more bbq's and summer ale's and depressed because it's so hot. (yes, i'm the weirdo who loves running in the rain like a kid... it makes my heart happy, so back off! haha)I've been thinking of ways I can mix things up as far as workouts. I've been working with my trainer. But what I really need more than anything, is for that fire to be lit under my ass again to eat right. "they" say it's 80% eating and 20% workouts... and you know what? "they" are right.

Monday, October 25, 2010

I've been taking care of business and my goodness, time flies. I just realized that I hadn't been upholding my end of this blogging deal again, so here I am... one month later posting. I won't bore you with the details of the last month, but just give you a quick rundown.

In the past month I have: lost 17 lbs. (yay me!!), was diagnosed with patellar tendonitis (a strain/inflammation to the patellar tendon which connects your patella with your shin bone... BOO!), stopped playing soccer for a month, restarted playing soccer (not quite pain free, but it'll do for now), took a training class at the gym for instructors (which ended up being hours and hours of step aerobics, which I do not love), went to a clothing exchange party and got some sweet new kicks and shirts, started looking for a new place for our family to live, celebrated my daughters 6th birthday, celebrated my dads birthday, carved pumpkins and tried to squeeze in as many activities as I possible could.

I've discovered that I really am addicted to exercise. I never thought I would be that kind of person, but I am now. There's no denying that I become cranky and mean and a downright b-iatch when I don't get my workouts in. I can't really help it. I try to be fine when I don't work out, but I just end up running around not really getting anything done. Exercise is my BFF. I have more energy and am just a happier person when I can get in at least an hour a day. It doesn't matter what it is. Cardio, weights, running, soccer, spin class... just let me do it so I can be myself! Haha.

I'll try to be better about posting... sometimes I just need to live life instead of writing about it though.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

I had my one month assessment by the trainer last night. The results shouldn't have upset me as much as they did, but I am my own worst critic. To be honest, I spent 2 out of the 4 weeks doing nothing but eating, drinking and being merry (the direct result of being on vacation). Sure, I could have done more. Sure, I should expect more of myself. But there's definitely a lot that I can take from this one month check-up and then move forward. Always move forward and look back only when I need a reminder of where it was I came from.

So here it is. After one month, I managed to gain 3 lbs. and gained 1/2 an inch everywhere but my waist (where I managed to lose 1/2 an inch). My strength has improved. My cardio level is the same. And now... I quit f'ing around and get this done already.

The truth is that I lost 122 lbs by eating less. Period. I ate less calories. They weren't always the healthiest calories, but they were less and my body didn't really want to stay that big. Now that I am smaller and my goals are much bigger, I have to focus on nutrition. Period. The quality and quantity of food I partake in from here on out is of utmost importance. If I ever want to be an ironman, this is what will help get me there. Well, that and upping my cardio. It's time to start the daily doubles again. It's time to push myself. It's time to kick it up a notch. No holding back.

Talk is cheap. It's time to be like Nike and just freaking do it already.

Monday, September 20, 2010

This weekend I used one of the gift certificates I won. My sister and I went here:

it was amazing. Sure, the wait for a table was 2 hours but they let us leave and come back so it worked out. We walked down to another restaurant (whose name escapes me at the moment) and sat at the bar for a cocktail and charcuterie plate. (I am still not used to remembering to take pictures of things for this blog, but I will try to get better about it.) Here's one of the only pictures I took of the evening, and really... it's the only one that turned out.

After spending a ridiculous amount of money on 2 drinks and an appetizer, we hit up a local hipster bar for a cheaper drink. We were definitely out of our element, but got some really good laughs, so that's all that matters. Finally we walked up to the restaurant and had one of the best meals I have ever had. We started with steak tartar. OMG.

I know what you are thinking... but seriously, it was so good that I am trying to figure out a way to convince my husband that he needs to take me there again. Then we had fried green tomatoes.

Shared a salad of melon and basque peppers. My sister had Mac and Cheese with Tim's chip crust (ewww. I cannot stand mac and cheese, so she got this all to her self) and I had ratatouille. My sister did not like it at all, but I thought it was delish!! Then we decided to cap the night off with a trip to Voodoo Donut. I got the Bacon Maple Bar.

It was ok. Seriously. I am really not sure what all the hype about the voodoo is, cause it was a donut. Maybe that's because donuts and sweet things aren't really my thing. Put some nachos and beer in front of me and it's a whole different ball game.

Saturday morning I taught aqua-aerobics and then played soccer. I scored one of the most fancy looking goals of my life! Haha. It was seriously pure luck, but I'm still excited about scoring. Then I spent the entire afternoon doing a couple projects around the house. Sunday I had personal training and spent 30 minutes doing core exercises. My abs will most likely hurt for days. Then I played 2 soccer games and spent the afternoon taking my grandma (the one that just had surgery on her foot) to dinner and to the store. It was good to get her out of the house and she seemed to really perk up after we got out! All in all, I'd say it was a good weekend.

Friday, September 17, 2010

I can't believe it's been so long since I've blogged. So much has gone on in the last couple weeks that I don't even know where to begin so I apologize if this seems like just rambling.

After my sister and I returned from the gorge all hell broke loose. Our dad was in a motorcycle accident and ended up needing surgery on my birthday. This meant that our parents would not be coming to the gorge to see Dave Matthews and they would not be going on their 25th wedding anniversary cruise to Alaska the following weekend. So sad. My sister and I drove all over creation to get to the gorge to see Dave. He made it worth our while though. One of the best concerts ever on Saturday and then he opened Sundays show with my absolute favorite song of his. I lost my voice in the first 2 minutes on Sunday! Haha. While we were gone we learned that our grandma had a little mishap and broke her foot. She had surgery as well. Seriously, the universe is all sorts of chaos!! What else??? Oh yeah, I bought a raffle ticket from a Team in Training friend for $20. I WON!!! The prize was for 20 - $50 gift certificates to local restaurants. I still can't even believe it. For people who don't know, I am a total foodie at heart. I love perfectly executed plates. I love fresh produce. I am in awe of chef's who create flavor combinations that I wouldn't have ever dreamed of. Perfect prize for this girl!! Last night I had the opportunity to eat at one of the restaurants and let me tell you... it was absolutely amazing. Bacon, corn, leek and thyme pizzetta? Get outta here. Roasted beet salad with fresh greens, yogurt and toasted chickpeas. Dear god. Sooo good. Tonight I am treating my sister to one of my gift certificates. She has been busy all week taking care of grandma's every need that it's time someone take care of her.

Now I need to be honest. I had a really hard time getting back on track after vacation. Essentially two weeks of no working out really did me in. I made poor food choices. I got lazy. Then like a miracle, I refound my mojo. I started working out like a crazy person again. I even started a new eating plan. It's really about eating smaller meals every 2-3 hours. It's a very strange thing to me. I am so the girl who would starve herself all day just to eat a big dinner. Terrible, terrible habit. So, now I break it. I've been really inspired by all of these fancy gift cards to create delish food for each meal. Even my snacks at work are getting comments about how good they look. Like this yogurt, strawberry, plum and crushed trail mix thing I whipped together this morning.

I'm going to try and start posting pictures of food I prepare. Like this portabello veggie burger, hummus, red pepper, spinach wrap.

I hope that maybe I'll post something that will inspire someone else to create. It doesn't always have to be a chore. I have my first weigh-in and measurements early next week, so we will see how far I've come.

Monday, August 30, 2010

This weekend was a testament to how much my life has changed. My sister and I drove to Moses Lake, WA to see a concert at the Gorge Amphitheater. We were both a bit apprehensive about this trip because the gorge trips have always had the theme, 'eat, drink and be merry.' Times they are a-changin'.

We decided that on the way up we would climb Multnomah Falls. 1 mile. Straight up. Tina ran and I power walked. At the top, we both did jumping jacks and pushups. Then we both ran to the bottom and did crunches. According to my trusty bodybugg, I burned 756 calories in about 30 minutes. Intense! Then we hit the road and made our way to the Gorge. We also made a deal that for every mile we drove, I would do a jumping jack and she would do a crunch. We decided that ultimately we would do either a crunch, pushup or jumping jack so that we would get an all around good workout. We set up camp and then decided that our activities would best be suited for completion in the restroom because we don't want to give any townie a heartattack. Haha. The grand total for each of us was 400 and I must say that I am very proud. We brought healthy snacks, had sandwiches for lunch and dinner and drank 55 calorie beers. Total calorie burn for Saturday was 4126. Completely crazy! We didn't commit to working out yesterday, but I still managed to burn 3026 calories from all the walking and dancing in the car we did. Haha.

This week is going to be completely crazy. Tonight I have an hour long training session scheduled. Tomorrow I pack. Wednesday I work a half day and then hit the road for an overnighter in Seattle. Thursday we drive from Seattle to Moses Lake. Game on! I know I can be active on vacation. I know I can make good choices. The hardest part for me is not stressing about everything I put in my mouth. It's my birthday for pete's sake. I should be able to eat, drink and be merry. Then I should probably run a marathon or something to get back on track. I just worry that I won't get back on track or that I will have done so much damage that I can't get back to where I was before. It's ridiculous, but it's true. This whole process is more mental than anything. I am at constant battle with all of the negative thoughts in my head. Some days I win and some days I don't.

Friday, August 27, 2010

My upper body has been annihilated. Did I really sign up for this?? Haha. Just kidding. I had training Wednesday and Thursday nights this week and this morning I woke up thinking and feeling like that may have been a mistake (although it's most likely that I am being a whiney baby).

Wednesday I lifted for back and biceps. It was a tough one and I was pouring sweat about 4 minutes into it. Here's what it consisted of:

isobent row: 25 lbs./15 reps
dumbell reverse fly: 10 lbs./20 reps
superset x 4 (meaning I did the one set of rows and then went straight into the reverse fly and then straight into the second set)

assisted pullups: 20 reps
stiff arm pullover: 40 lbs./20 reps
seated low row: 75lbs./90 lbs. /20 reps
superset x 4

After those, the trainer says, 'prepare for your biceps to die.' Ummm. So I guess this is the point where he makes me cry for my mommy.
pass curls 35 lbs. (these consisted of him doing one biceps curl, passing the bar to me so i can do one, then passing back to him so he does two and so on... up to 10 and then back down to 1)
He now tells me that he thinks he went too light on the weight and next time we start with 40 and work our way up to 50. Oh sheesh.

Thursday night I worked out with a different trainer who decided to destroy my upper body. It was really sweet of him to have me do chest and triceps following that back/biceps workout. NOT!! Here's what that workout went:

chest press: 60 lbs./15 reps x 3 sets
incline chest press: 20 lbs./15 reps x 3 sets
tricep extension: 60 lbs./15 reps x 5 sets
pullovers: 80 lbs./15 reps x 5 sets

And this is when I die. Hahaha. My upper body is pretty darn sore. I can't wait until I have been at this a little longer and it gets harder and I get stronger. I talked with S the trainer for a while last night about nutrition and how to make the most out of my time at the gym. He really wants me to go speak to a nutritionist about my carb/protein ratios. Apparently I don't eat enough of the right kind of carbs. Ugh.

On another note, I am headed for the Gorge this weekend to see Jeith Murban(John Mayer and Keith Urban) in concert at 'heaven's amphitheater.' I am in desperate need of some time away and this will be a great pre-funk to my birthday weekend spent there seeing the dave matthews band. I've made a tentative plan for eating healthy and staying somewhat active. We'll see how it all works out though. I already warned both the trainers that I was most likely going to be on a 6 day liquid diet next week consisting mainly of beer and jello shots. I don't think either one was impressed. Haha.

Monday, August 23, 2010

My body is in shock. There really is no other way to describe it. After all those squats on Thursday, I taught cycle on Friday, aqua aerobics Saturday morning followed by a fitness assessment with my trainer, 3 soccer games Saturday night and 1 soccer game Sunday morning. My legs are jell-o and in a perpetual state of sore. It hurts so good. I just remind myself that every sore muscle is a happy muscle getting stronger and burning more calories. Sometimes that works, sometimes I whine like a baby. Haha.

So back to that fitness assessment on Saturday....
Trainer boy gave me a choice whether to do the assessment at all or to work out. I decided to just do it so I had a realistic 'picture' of where I am at right now. This way, in two months, I can look back and really see the overall progress that I am making. It's not just about the scale people. Sure, that's a tool to gage where we are, but there are other ways to measure progress. Anyway, he started by weighing me, measuring me all over and then we did a few exercises to get a base level of fitness tracked. The first one of these was 3 minutes on the stairclimber and then he took my heartrate. (side note: the stairclimber is amazing and I love it... but not 2 days after doing the squat workout from hell) Then he had me do a seated bench press with a set amount of weight keeping the same speed for as many reps as possible. I consider my upper body weaksauce. In comparison with my lower body, it is. But it turns out that I have 'excellent' upper body strength. Then we did the same thing but on the leg press. I also have 'excellent' lower body strength. Then he had me do the sit and reach to test flexibility as well as doing as many crunches as possible in 1 minute.

After all of that, I look at where I am now and can't complain. Turns out that I am at an excellent fitness level. I am just overweight. Ok, technically I am obese. I've come a long way from that girl who weighed in at 367. The girl who could hardly walk one flight of stairs without sweating like a pig and being out of breath. Let's be honest, I am not that girl anymore. I haven't been for a long time. I have a hard time seeing that sometimes... but it's good to remember that I was like that at one time, I am not like that now and I certainly will never be like that again. Ever. Period. End of discussion. Time to burn the fat and whittle the middle

(Another side note: Some of you may have noticed that little ticker moving in the right direction finally. Well, it's true. I've finally broken the 5-6 month platuea and am now at 245. 122 lbs lost. I've made my first mini goal 230 so that I can enter the bone marrow registry. I think I'll even make the husband buy me a massage as a prize. Alright... back to work for me!)

This picture is of me 2 years ago. I weighed about 340 here. Gross.

Friday, August 20, 2010

I spent the hour before training teaching aqua aerobics and then did a quick little 5 minutes on the stairclimber. I wasn't really sure how this would go, but it turned out really well. I was nice and warmed up, ready for whatever the trainer would throw at me.

(side note: my scheduled trainer had some personal issue and approached me right when I walked in the gym to apologize and ask if it was alright if I worked with a different trainer. I ended up working out with JT, a no-nonsense, here's your ass on a platter kind of guy. Exactly the kind of training I needed for day 1. First thing he does is say, "I designed this workout to be like Crossfit. Can you handle that?" Ummmm. I can handle anything. Duh.)

So here is a breakdown of day 1 with the trainer:

Front Squats / 30 lb. bar:
20 reps x 3

Thruster Squats / 30 lb. bar:
20 reps x 3

Sumo Deadlift Squats / 30 lb. bar:
20 reps x 3

Medicine Ball Squat/Wall Throw / 9 lb. ball:
20 reps x 3

Row Machine:
200 yard sprint x 5 with 15 sec. break between each

40 reps

30 secs. x 3

Toe Touch Crunches/Torture:
30 reps x 2

Die. Hahaha. Just kidding. I'll be honest... I was pouring sweat. I felt like I might puke during the row sprints. My legs feel like jell-o. But, that was intense and exactly what I would expect a trainer to throw at me. I've been on a 5 month plateau. No more f-ing around. It's game time!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

And so it begins...

Training, that is. I am ready for whatever my trainer brings to the table. I am ready to build strong(er) muscles. I am ready to whittle the middle. It's time. It's been time.

I have been really trying to set some goals for myself. The problem is, there is so much I want to accomplish... it's sometimes difficult for me to start small and work my way up. Obviously the ultimate goal is to complete an ironman. But what about everything else? I realize that there are a lot of things I need to accomplish before I can consider becoming an ironman. I know that I have to drop weight. I know that I must get stronger and faster. So here I am. Not really starting over, but just taking things from today forward. Today I train with my newly hired personal trainer. Today I focus on me.

Monday, August 16, 2010

kicking it up a notch

My birthday is coming up and my parents (and my husband) really want to know what I want. The thing is, I have pretty much everything I need and want (except for maybe a nice new $2500 triathlon bike.. hahaha... in my dreams) so it's been tough trying to come up with some ideas for them. I've thought long and hard about this. Finally I decided to ask my parents for personal training. First, I wanted to see if employees get a discount on personal training... I mean, why not get the most out of it right? Well, I went into the gym and asked... and guess what?@! It's a little less than half the price for me. When I found out how inexpensive it is, I signed up on the spot. Oops. Haha. There goes the training for my birthday idea. But in my defense, personal training is something I've wanted to do for myself for a really long time and could never really afford it... that is until now. I am seriously so excited I can't stand it. I want to start this instant cause I am such an instant gratification kind of girl. My first session is scheduled for this thursday. It will be right after I teach an aqua aerobics class which is soooo much fun and a nice little workout in itself (since I teach primarily from the pool deck). I am going to try to think of what it is that I want out of personal training. Obviously I want to lose weight... but more than that, I want to get stronger and faster and more awesome.

I still haven't come up with birthday ideas... but I'm sure something will come to me.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Sometimes I have so much to say that I don't think there are enough words in the universe for me to express it all. Sometimes, times like now, I don't have much to say.
I'm taking things as they come. Each day is new. I'm changing the things I can and making the most out of things I can't. I'm putting my health and happiness first. I may seem distant, but there are things that I just need to deal with in my own way. I'm changing physically and mentally. I'm becoming a better person.

Monday, August 2, 2010

It's really just about showing up.

Race day:
I woke up at 5:15am which is about normal for me... what isn't normal is staying up until almost 11pm the night before to watch Dodgeball and get myself fired up. I already had everything packed and ready to go, so at least the actual getting out of the house process was pretty harmless. I got dressed, loaded my gear and headed out to Blue Lake. I must say that the lack of traffic on a Saturday morning is so freaking nice. I actually got to drive the speed limit and didn't get cut-off by any jerks and didn't feel the need to scream any obsenities at all. Haha. I ate my little pre-race breakfast in the car (a peanut butter and honey sandwich prepared by my sister) and downed a bottle of water/nuun and sang some Queen trying to stay relaxed.

Pre Race:
Got to the lake and parked by 6:45am. Walked over to pick up my race packet and OMG... it's mosquito central!! Dumb me brought sunscreen (which I didn't need AT ALL) but didn't even think about bringing some bug spray. I got attacked. Pre-race I would say I got at least 10 ginormous squito bites. Apparently there was some sort of mix up when the 'data entry' person entered all of my information into the computer (they put me down as a 48 year old who wears a size medium... hahaha). I finally got it sorted out thanks to a friend who works for AA Sports and got the appropriate packet with the correct information. So, I walked back to my car, unloaded my bike and grabbed my transition bag. Walking towards transition, I spotted my sweet friend Bekah! Yay! I was super excited to see her since she was the only person I knew racing that day. Gave her a quick hug and headed to get body marked so I could actually chat a little with Beks later. After that whole black sharpie marking thing, I racked my bike and set up my transition area. The girl next to me had a balloon to mark where her bike was. Um. Is it seriously that hard to remember that your bike is racked on the very last bike rack right next to the run start?? Seriously lady. Anyway, I was all ready and walked over to chat with Bekah who asked me to help her get her wetsuit on. No problem. Got her in... and took off my warm clothes and headed out to the lake. Ummmm. Holy bath water! The water was soooo warm and I was really glad I had decided to forego the wetsuit. It was a little too warm for me. I am a super hot swimmer so the colder the better. Hopped in for a little warmup just in time for them to call everyone out of the water for pre-race announcements.

Good lord. I should have trained. I've been battling swimmers shoulder for months and really the only thing that seems to help it is NOT swimming. Ugh. I'll be honest. I really struggled during the swim. My most favorite part of triathlons and I really f-ed it up. I'm pretty sure the kayaker thought I was gonna drown cause he kept paddling over near me. Haha. I did pass people in the wave in front of me, but for me... the swim was my biggest disappointment. I looked at my time later and actually added a LOT of time to my swim. For me this is a giant FAIL!

I got out of the water feeling pretty good. Looking at my time, I know why. Nice leisurely swim is helpful for quick transitions cause you'll have plenty of energy to run up to transition. Haha. Since I didn't wear a wetsuit, all I had to do was put my shoes and bike helmet on and go.

Flat and fast. Marine drive really is flat. It really is fast. It really sucks when the wind is blowing in your face. I felt pretty good during the bike. I setlled into a nice race-pace and just did it. I remembered how hard the bike portion is for me mentally. I don't know what it is, but put me on a bike in a race and I start getting all debbie downer and feel like giving up. Of course I'd never actually give up cause I'm just not that kind of girl, but it seriously messes with my head. One of the best distractions for me is all of the other racers who don't have any race etiquette... cause I start getting super irritated. Ummm... what part of don't pass on the right is so hard to understand. I had several thoughts of just stiff arming the girls who did that and watching them tumble down the hill and into the river. Haha. So... overall the bike portion was pretty good. Just about the same time as last year. Yay!

Alright. Another peeve of mine is the ladies who ride up to the dismount area and then take FOREVER to get off their bike. I'm trying to get around you... hellooooooo. Other people. Haha. Anywho... this was by far the easiest transition ever. All I did was take off my bike helmet and put on a running hat and I was off. Easy peasy. Oh, and I saw my friend MaryJane who gave me a couple cheers, took my picture and gave me a little good luck high five. It's always nice to see a friendly face on the course!

So, I suck at running. Really. It's something I've come to terms with. Running at my size just isn't that easy. But here's the deal... I'm getting better at it. Faster even. I started off walking for 5 minutes. I'm glad I did, cause once I got out of transition and onto the flat paved portion I started running... and kept running. I saw another one of the instructors from LA Fitness. He was out cheering for some friends and gave me a few encouraging words before yelling 'move your ass girlfriend'... which really got me going. Surprise surprise! I ran the first mile and a half and once I got to the turn-around, grabbed some water and walked for a few minutes. Then I was off running again. I don't know what came over me, but my legs felt pretty good and so I kept running. In the end, the run portion ended up being the best for me. So weird. So not normal. I took over 10 minutes off my run time. I don't know how that's possible, but it happened.

So... there you have it. The race I didn't prepare for. It did show me a lot about myself though. I am still capable. I am still strong. I'm getting faster at some thngs. I need to work on others. But, I had such little expectations of myself for this race I am really really happy with my results. And hey, I was out there and I finished. Really, with no training, I should expect nothing else of myself!

Congrats to all of the first timers, to the repeat timers and to Bekah (who I am lucky to have as a friend).

And now I train. I have officially decided to do the Oly at Black Diamond. I may die.. or die trying, but I'm gonna do it. I looked at the times from the course for last year and know that I will most likely be last by a lot... but who cares. I'm gonna show up and finish cause that's what I do.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

It's almost race day again.

I decided to sign up last minute for the All Women's Sprint Triathlon at Blue Lake. It's 2 days away and now panic has started to settle in. Did I train? No. Am I mentally prepared? Not really. Is my fitness level where it was last year when I raced at Blue Lake? I have no idea. What I do know is that I have very few expectations of myself for this race. It's been months since my last triathlon. I've been fighting off several different injuries. I haven't been 'tri' training specifically. But, at the very least, I expect to finish and to have a good time. I honestly don't think my time will improve. I can't say whether the swim will be as easy as all those previously have been. But I do know that showing up and getting it done to begin with is something to be proud of.

Sometimes I get lost in all the great things my friends are doing. Half-Ironman. Ironman. Marathons. Swimming the English Channel. Running Hood to Coast. Running their very first 5k's. I forget that it's all relative. Most of them have been athletic their whole lives. Some of them maybe not athletic, but being a smaller size is definitely an advantage when it comes to training and racing.

It's time for me to show myself that I am still capable of great things too. No matter what my size.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

It has been brought to my attention that I haven't been keeping up my end of the blogging bargain. So here I am, making an attempt at it once again.

The last few weeks have flown by in a blur. You know the kind... like in a music video where the singer seems to be in slow motion while everyone around them goes about their normal activities at what appears to be a high rate of speed. Ok, that might be a slight exaggeration.

Anyway, I lost a little bit of my mojo and then refound most of it again. I've been teaching the cycle class at the gym two or three times a week and loving every minute of it. There's really no better feeling than having some poor sucker look at you with those, 'you have got to be kidding me' eyes in the middle of class when I pull another cycle trick out of my sleeve. I've been getting a lot of positive feedback. Definitely a lot more than I thought I would get. Sure, there are still those people at the gym who refuse to take my class because of my size. I honestly can say at this point that it's their loss. I'm kicking ass and taking names. Literally.

I also have decided that there is still some time left in the tri season for me to get back in the game. Next weekend I am headed out to Blue Lake for a little sprint triathlon action. Sure, I should have probably thought about it a month or two ago and maybe trained for it... but really, I am just going to go out and give it my best and finish. Shoot, I might even finish last. It doesn't matter. I'll be out there. Doing it. In September I'd like to do an olympic distance tri again. There isn't a ton of time to train, but I know it's doable. Besides, I have convinced my training partner to do the sprint distance at that particular race and I certainly can't let her down, now can I? Haha.

All in all... things are basically the same. My weight is the same. My workouts are about the same. The only thing that's changed is my pants size. I am proud to say that I... the girl who at one time was squeezing my giant ass into a size 30 (yes, that's a size 30 not waist 30) pants can now comfortably fit into a size 18. I had previously set a goal of getting into a 16 by my birthday and basically written that off because my weight hadn't changed... but now I think it's still possible. The dream is alive people. The dream is alive.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

It's been a minute. Ok, it's been lots of minutes. But in my defense, I've been teaching the spins, playing the soccer, watching the World Cup, watching my sweet angel graduate from pre-k and basically getting my life in order. Sometimes things are so good. Sometimes they are amazing. Other times, life kicks me in the stomach and I am reeling from it. I feel like it's those times that are what make me who I am. They make me stronger. I have had two things happen in the past couple days and am still thinking them over again and again.

The first was during soccer. I was playing defense and a player on the other team told the girl with the ball to just dribble around me. Her response was, 'but she's just so big.' Wow. Way to be an ignorant bitch. I wanted so much to say something, but I thought that would most likely escalate into me knocking her out. I wanted to badly to just go over and take her out... check her into the wall, but instead I just walked off the field. Some people don't realize how their words really effect other people. 1. I am well aware of my size. Hello. I live in this body every day of my life. 2. It's these little comments that really undermine all of the hard work I have put in over the last year. It's not fair. It's not right. And here I am, days later, still thinking about it. Still dwelling on some comment made by some girl who couldn't handle that I could take the ball away from her on the soccer field.

The second was after my daughters graduation program (which by the way was the most adorable thing I have ever seen in my life). After watching her sing and dance her little heart out, my husband and I took her to Coldstone. It was our first time going there (I know, I know... but I don't really like ice-cream that much). We ordered vanilla with berries mixed in (which wasn't that bad, but wasn't that great either) and talked about the next school year. While we were sitting there, two girls I used to work with at Lane Bryant came in. I probably haven't seen them in 5 years and things sure have changed for all 3 of us. They have both gained 50 lbs. minimum and I have lost over 100 lbs. They both kept saying how great I look and how different I am now. I didn't really know what to say other than thank you. What do you say? Both of them used to be size 10's. Oh, what I wouldn't give to be a size 10. Now I would say they are size 20 or 22. Roughly... the same size I am now. You might wonder why this meeting would affect me in any other way than positive, but the truth is... I used to want to be these girls. They both have good jobs, they both seem happy. So, why can't I be happy. I want to drop this stupid weight so much that I forget how far I've come. But, I also start questioning what it will be like when I'm smaller. Will I be happy? Cause I'm pretty happy now.

On another note, my husband unburied our wedding album and anytime I need a reminder of how far I've come... now I can just look at that.

Friday, June 4, 2010

There are times in life where things just feel right. Everything falls into place and for me, now is one of those times. This week I taught my first spin class. It feels so good to know that I can inspire people in a new way. I want to show people what can be done with a little effort. It's certainly not easy, but it does get easier. I've been telling everyone I know at the gym to come to my class. Shoot, I've been telling people I don't know to come. I even restarted weight watchers this week. I looked back at the last 3 months trying to figure out why I had hit a plateau, what had changed. It was then that I realized that 3 months ago was when I stopped really doing WW. I thought I could do it on my own. I thought I'd try new things. The truth is, none of them worked the way WW did. So, I'm back on the WW wagon. It's what I need to do.

On another note, my sister got into nursing school. I knew she'd get in. She has been busting her butt getting straight A's in all her pre-req's and really deserved to get in. I am so proud of her I can hardly stand it. It makes me want to climb a mountain just so I can yell at the top of my lungs, 'see. this is what happens when you set your mind to something and work hard for it.'

Friday, May 28, 2010


That's an understatement.

I have a habit of writing myself off. Sure, people can tell me how good I am at something or that I should do such and such... but I have a tendency to talk myself out of it. This is why I have to actually sign up for races way ahead of time, so that I don't talk myself out of it. It happens.

This is 10. The year that I stop writing myself off and realize that I am good at many things. I inspired 2 of my friends to join the gym and both are now working out regularly. My sister started running again. I convinced another friend of mine that she was completely capable of doing a triathlon and she is now training for her first. I am a motivator. I try to make people see that it's not about waiting until they are the right size to do amazing things. Cause really people, it's not. Why wait? What if you never get to a certain size? Then, you would have passed up all of those opportunities to show yourself and the world what you're really made of.

The reason I write this is because I have some news. I.. yes, me... am now a CYCLE INSTRUCTOR!! Aaaahhh!! I can't believe it. I've wanted to become an instructor for more than a year now, but never really thought it would happen because...hey, gyms are corporations and all about image and I do NOT look like a typical instructor. Sure, I have the endurance and proper form and the strength... more so than a lot of the people that come into cycle class. But, about a year ago I tried to become an instructor and wasn't even given a chance. It happens. I wrote myself off and didn't press the issue any further. About 2 weeks ago, I learned that there were several openings for cycle instructors at my gym. Unfortunately, one of these openings was from my most favoritist cycle instructor Wendy, who is leaving to open her very own competitive cycle gym. Yay for her!! Boo for me!! Well, Wendy has always been very encouraging and told me point blank that I was the best candidate and if my gym didn't give me a chance to show them what I'm made of, she would get me in at 24hr. Whoa! I got the info for the aerobics coordinator and made the call. And then I waited. I called her back and had a 'not so encouraging' conversation with her and was thisclose to cancelling my audition. I got a cold. But last night, I went to my audition. I did my best. I figured that was all I could do, my best. If I didn't get it, there would surely be opportunities for me in the future. It went really well. I was hired on the spot. Crazy! She even asked if I could teach the class tonight at 5:30... but then found that a sub had already been found. So, there you have it. I am a cycle instructor. My first class is next friday. Aaaahhhh!! I am so excited. I can't wait to make people want to puke from working so hard. Hahaha.

Moral of my story... don't write yourself off. The only one holding you back from becoming everything you want to be is yourself. This is 10 people. In the words of my fav. Bob, "stand up and finish what you started."

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

I sabatoge myself. I make bad choices. I have a hard time picturing myself any different than I am now. These are issues that I need to deal with.

Friday, May 14, 2010

One of the reasons I'd like to drop some of this weight isn't an obvious one. A few years ago I decided that I'd really like to become a bone-marrow donor. The opportunity to give a little of myself so that another might live would be amazing. I researched the process and decided to sign up. Ugh. For someone my height, you must weigh less than 230 lbs. Argh. When I found that out, it was when I was close to my heaviest so I removed the idea from the front of my mind and pushed it to the back where my ideas of being able to shop in stores like Ann Taylor and the GAP were.
I've shrunk. I can wear clothes at the GAP now. I am just one measley size away from fitting comfortably in Ann Taylor. I realized that I am just a mere 22 lbs away from being able to register and that makes me very excited.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

This week has been exactly what I needed. I've done doubles a few days this week. They feel good. My legs are sore. My arms are sore. I have more energy. I love doubles. This morning would have made day 3, but the silly gym girl was 40 minutes late opening the gym. I get it. Stuff happens. But, when there are over 20 people waiting in the parking lot for you to show up, the least you could do is say that you're sorry for being late. But no. Just look at everyone when they walk in. Don't say anything. That gets you real far in my book. NOT! This morning I had planned a nice hour long recovery swim. I needed it. Instead, I got a 15 minute scramble swim and now I'm grumpy. So, tomorrow I swim.

I've really been contemplating doing Pac Crest again. It was my goal all along to go back to Pac Crest and beat my time. Right now, I know there is no way I am going to beat my time, but it would be some nice reassurance that I am still on the right path if I went back and completed it anyway. My hip finally seems to be on the upward swing of mending. My head is back in the game. My eating is less out of control. I think Pac Crest is just what the doctor ordered. Nothing like a .9 mile swim, 28 mile bike and 6.2 mile run to get your ass in high gear! I'm going to go out to Vancouver Lake this weekend and see how an open water swim feels. I much prefer open water to swimming in a pool... but I am more worried about the distance than anything. If I can do a comfortable mile swim in open water then I will sign up. You hear that? I will sign up.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


Results are in. Turns out that I am not diabetic. Yay! Thank goodness. My doctor was anything but helpful and just gave me the results with no plan, no ideas, nothing. So, after some deliberating I have decided that the best approach is to eat small meals every 2-3 hours. This way, I am always getting fuel and the likelihood of my blood sugar crashing is reduced greatly. I also started keeping a food log and workout journal in a fitbook. If you don't know what a fitbook is, it's pretty much the dopest 12-week journal evers. Check it out:
It lets me track weights, cardio, flexibility, food and water intake. I took my measurements. I weighed myself. I refocused. Game on.

My sister reminded me today that this is a lifelong journey for me. It's not something that is going to happen overnight. I can't let myself forget that and give up. I have apparently inspired people to make changes in themselves, become fitter, push themselves to do things they wouldn't have dreamed of doing before. I hope I continue to do that. To help people realize that you really can do anything you set your mind to. Anything. It's all mind over matter. If you let yourself feel defeated before you even begin... you will never be better than you are now. I'm choosing to climb every sand covered hill and then run down it with gusto! Care to join me??

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Listening to my body... for once.

So here's the deal. I have been busting my ass for months. I hit a plateau. It happens. Just when I was starting to accept the plateau for what it really is and shake things up, my body has decided to hate me.

My blood sugar has been 'crashing.' Usually this happens about once a month at the gym when I haven't eaten anything with sugar (either naturally occuring or fake) all day. I don't like sugar. So... in the past week, it has happened twice. Both times it was when I wasn't working out. Yesterday it happened while I was driving to get my bosses their lunch. I was standing in the line at Subway and my vision started to go. FYI: Subway used to have raisins, but apparently I was the only one who ever got them so they no longer sell them. I decided to do the stupid thing and wait until I got back to work to have sugar. Bad LeeAnn. By the time I got back to work, my vision was really fuzzy. I downed a packet of raw sugar and waited. Once the sugar hit me, my vision went back to normal, but I was left with a headache for the rest of the day. Beyond that, I have been really thirsty lately and easily drinking over a gallon of water a day on top of my morning coffee and afternoon iced tea. There are some other fun things going on with my body as well that are making me crazy. I've been sleeping terribly. I wake up multiple times a night and even began having nightmares. Really irrational nightmares, which for me is just out of the ordinary. I never had them when I was younger and really, I could have gone my whole life without dreaming of being attacked by spiders with talking doll heads. This morning I woke up with a swollen eye. It looks like someone punched me in the night. The skin around my eye is red and itchy. Seriously? This is getting out of control.

I sent my pcp an email this morning and hopefully she responds quickly. I am crossing my fingers and toes that it's not what I think it is. I'm going to take it easy this week. I have a Girl Scout meeting for Amaya tonight and tomorrow we are going to Kindergarten orientation and then to Akimi and Deb's for dinner and the Blazer game.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The old switcheroo.

I haven't blogged for a few days because I haven't really had much to say. My frustration at this stupid plateau I have hit is mounting and it's all I think about. I think about how much I hate it. I think about how much I want to break it. I look at different workout plans and weight training plans and cardio plans. I have been hunting for a personal trainer or something that will get me over the hump. I am pushing myself harder than before and seeing little result. Ok, no result except sore muscles and a sore knee. Yep. Now my knee is bothering me. Funny that now my hip seems to be doing ok though. I've been icing it every night. I've been taking the anti-inflammatory supplement that the naturopath gave me. Argh. I hate it.

So, here's where I have begun to shake things up a bit. First, I am taking 2 weeks off from spinning. It's hard and it sucks and I hate not spinning, but my body is so used to it that I now burn about 1/2 the calories I did a few months ago. I'm not complaining, it just means that I am now more efficient at it, but I think if I do something different for a few weeks and then go back I'll be able to get the caloric burn that I want/need again. Second, I am lifting weights 2-3 times a week. Sometimes I lift with Brandon (my mock trainer), sometimes with my friend Debbie (who I conned into joining the gym... hahaha) and sometimes with my sister. On the other days I do cardio for at least an hour. In the weightlifting book I bought, it mentions that you should do cardio for 20 minutes... step away for 5 minutes and then repeat. Last night I did 30 minutes on the Precor and then when my mp3 player died I went to my locker, grabbed my other one and then did 30 more minutes. I burned more calories (according to my trusty bodybugg) in that hour than I have for weeks. Perhaps this is what I need to do. Mix it up more. Make cardio more interval based. And yes, I admit that I am completely obsessed with my training and breaking my plateau. Third, I ordered a log to keep track of all of my workouts and food intake. I'd like to keep better track of what I am taking in and also what my workouts are so that if this happens again (which I know it will), I'll be able to see (or show a 'expert' so they can see) where I need to change things up.

I'm over this plateau. Over it dot com. dot edu. dot net. dot whatev. Done.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

It's a head game.

If the eating part of being healthy were as easy for me as the fitness part, I'd be a size nothing. There I said it. I'd be on the hot tamale train all the time. Right now I am struggling with the food. I have such a love/hate. It's just too easy to make bad choices. I workout so much, but then make terrible food choices. And this, my dear friends, is why I am the same size. Why, for the last few months, I have bounced between the same stupid 10 lbs. I'm over it.

I brought my friend Debbie with me to the gym last night. She signed up after walking in the door. Haha. Apparently, I'm a good influence on my peeps! We lifted arm weights and did some abs... then we took spinning. It was her first time and she made me so proud! We made another gym date for Thursday! It will be for some legs, abs and cardio. I think she might rethink things afterwards though. My leg workouts are always way harder than my arm workouts. She and I also are planning on meeting each other twice a week in the mornings. Yay for doubles! I have a feeling if I step up my workouts a little bit, the food choices will be much better.

The hubby also told me that he'd like to buy me something because he's been working so much. On his paycheck today, he had 48 hours of overtime in 2 weeks. Sheesh. I've been thinking about what I want... and what I want is personal training. With a real, honest to goodness trainer. One that makes my muscles shake and makes me want to cry for my mommy. I am going to talk to the guys at the gym tonight and find out if it's actually doable. Crossing fingers. I WANT!!

On an entirely other note, I've skipped a whole slew of days this month working towards the 1000 minute goal. I know, SLACKER!! But, I added up my minutes and am happy to report that I am at 430 for the month. Not so many to go... keep on truckin.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Getting it done.

I haven't blogged for a few days because I have been busy working, working out, eating healthfully and brainstorming gift ideas for a new baby boy. It's a little crazy, but some sort of recessed crafting gene has risen in me and all I want to do is create things. I have a whole binder full of tutorials now. A brain chock full of ideas, especially now that the weather is nicer and I can create things for the outside spaces too! Yay!

So here's what I've been doing as far as workouts. I took Monday off to rest my body after the Beaver Freezer. They weren't sore, but I knew they needed a few days off before I hit it hard at the gym. Tuesday had a kick ass hill- climb spin class. Wednesday had a brutal interval spin class. When I say brutal, I mean it. I was huffing and puffing and burned a LOT of calories. Last night I lifted arm weights and did cardio-intervals between sets. They went something like this:
Lift set 1: 10 reps heavy weight
30 seconds of jumping jacks
Lift set 2: 15 reps medium weight
30 seconds of toe taps on the bench
Lift set 3: 20 reps at light weight
Next set:
Lift set 1: 10 reps heavy weight
2 minute run at 5mph
Lift set 2: 15 reps medium weight
1 minute stair climb
Lift set 3: 20 reps at light weight
Let's just say that after an hour of that, I thought I might die. Luckily the gym was full of all sorts of hotties to keep me motivated. Thank you to Brandon for getting the Timbers to workout at my gym. Thank you to Brandon for filling the gym with boxers and ballers and shot-callers.

This weekend I may be a smidge overextended. Tomorrow Erin, Amaya and I are going to look at the tulips and have a picnic lunch. Then it's off to my mom's to utilize her sewing machine and craft like a mad person. Then I would like to bake a lovely something for the baby shower. Sometime I should see my husband who has kindly informed me that he'll be working all weekend anyway... ugh. Then Sunday is church and then baby shower time. Hopefully I'll be done with the gifts and can relax a smidge. Did you notice there aren't any workouts in there? I did. I am hoping that I can get an hour in Saturday, but I plan on hitting it super extra hard tonight just in case I don't make it.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Detox day 1.

I decided to do a little 9 day clean eating/detox type thing. Today is day one. No caffeine. No meat. No potatoes. Only fruits, veggies, beans, tofu, 4 eggs whites a day (if I even eat those) and limited brown rice and oatmeal. I promised my sister that if I felt weak or like crap that I would add some lean protein like chicken or fish. Other than that, no eating out. No chemicaly food products. Just me and the nature. Yum!

I am also now on day 5 of the fitness minutes challenge. So far I have 120 minutes done. I plan on meeting my 1000 minutes goal for the month and surpassing it too! Who's with me??

Beaver Freezer Race Report

I woke up at 4:30am. That is so early when you aren't really used to getting up at that time! I had set out everything the night before, checking and rechecking that I was not forgetting anything. So, race day morning I got up, took a quick wake-up shower, got dressed and hit the road. I got to Corvallis around 7am. It was wet. It was cold. I was ready! I still had an hour before my race start, so I picked up my race packet, got body marked (where they write your race number on your arms and legs in fun black magic marker) and then set up my transition area. I decided then that I should just head to the pool to stay warm and also see if I could hop in the pool to swim a few easy warm-up laps and relax. That was probably the smartest thing I could have done. I warmed up by swimming 200 meters and did a few bobs. They had a little 'pre-race' meeting with everyone in my race start. Then we got in our lanes to countdown the last 5 minutes before it was go time!

I lucked out and was placed as the 1st person in my lane (of 4 swimmers). As soon as it was 8:05am, I pushed off the wall and swam a steady pace pretty much the entire race. The girl behind me tapped my heels about halfway through, so I let her pass but then ended up smacking her heels the entire lap so she let me go ahead of her again. I finished strong and ended up about half a pool length in front of the next swimmer! Yay! Hopped out of the pool and then ran down the lovely turf to transition. I should tell you that I thought it was a little messed up that they put the women in the pool farthest from transition. The men literally had to just run out the door and there they were at transition, but we had about an 1/8th of a mile run around the building which would not have been a big deal, but it was cold. We were wet. Not such a good combo!

I got through transition at a snail's pace. My hands were frozen into little ice nuggets and I struggled getting my helmet clipped. Finally made it through transition and onto my bike headed towards the country.

It was cold and windy and wet on the bike. I pushed myself a little bit and still ended up with a much slower time on the bike than I expected. I did have to get off about halfway through and put the lousy chain back on my bike after I dropped it trying to pass some girl spinning like a crazy person on nice flat road. The entire ride I was thinking about making sure I was in the right gear, being a little more efficient with my spinning. The best things about the bike course... the hot army men directing traffic and passing about 12 people (even if I knew they would pass me on the run, it still felt amazing).

Back in transition I had little to worry about. Racked my bike, put my hemet down and put on a hat. Done and done!

The run. My nemesis. My hip is still not 100%, but I figured I would just feel it out and see how I did. 3 loops around campus. No big deal, right? The first loop I took it easy. Running for a few minutes, walking for a few minutes. The second lap I ran the entire way. I felt good. Comfortable. I had a couple guys pass me who gave me a few words of encouragement. By the time I was at the last lap, I was in the zone. I ran that 5k faster than I ran the one on New Years Eve!

Overall, I am pretty darn happy with the Freezer. I took 10 minutes off my sprint time from last year (and that was on a flatter course with no wind or rain and without me being injured). I feel stronger and more athletic now. I'm ready for the next challenge.

Oyster shucked.

Friday, April 2, 2010

challenge day 1.

And I started off this month doing nothing. 0 minutes. In my defense, I have a triathlon on the 3rd. I spent last night gathering all of my race gear. Making sure my clothes were washed. Changing the tire flat from hell. Yes, I said it. It took me almost 30 minutes to change my tire. This is unacceptable. So, as soon as I (finally) got it on and inflated, I deflated it and started over. I need the practice. Anything can happen on race day. I realized last night that the CO2 dispenser I use is broken. I need a new one immediately. I also tore the living daylights out of my fingers trying to get the last little bit of the tire back over the rim. Ugh. It happens. The thing is, I love the anticipation of race day. Checking and rechecking my gear. Visualizing race day. It's my thing.

I may not be the fastest... heck, I might very well be last, but I don't care. I love triathlons. I love racing.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Taking out the junk.

A new study found that junk food is just as addictive as heroin. Of course it is. Duh! The sense of euphoria that people who are addictive to food get from eating things that are high in fat, calories and sugar could be likened to that of a drug addict who has just gotten his or her next fix. How do I know? Because I'm addicted to food. I have been for a long time. Only in the last year or so have I realized that it's more about the quality of food, rather than the quantity. I'm just as happy eating brown rice with tofu and veggies as I am eating pizza. I'm just left with less guilt about making terrible decisions when I choose the first. Food is fuel. That will be the motto for the rest of my existence.

Please read this article:

Think about it next time you want to eat the french fries or cheeseburger or whatever junk food is your favorite.

For another good read, please check out Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. As someone who loves food, he wants people to understand how much the quality of our food is affecting the people in the U.S.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


I decided that one way to push myself is to create a challenge. So, for the month of April... I am challenging all of you and myself to 1000 minutes of exercise. Yes. You can do it. I have done it before. It can happen. Don't worry, I am sure many of you will surpass that goal. My plan is to do a minimum of 1000 minutes of exercise. This can be anything. Walking, spinning, hiking, yoga, basically anything that gets you moving. Let's do this!

Monday, March 29, 2010

A fire under my ass....

That's what yesterday has done. It's lit a fire under my ass like never before. I spent 9 hours in line for the Biggest Loser Casting Call. First let me tell you about the process. I arrived at the convention center at 7:15am. It was a little later than I had planned on arriving, but this girl needs her coffee in the morning. The line was huge already. Literally and figuratively. I ended up being number 869th in line. Wow! And then we waited. And we waited. My sister came to keep me company and with the caffeine reinforcements. I talked to the people around me. Nice guy Jeremy who drove down from Moses Lake, Washington. The crazy girl who swore more than me and told me way TMI about herself. The man who broke my heart. He was from Hillsboro, is in his 40's, unemployed and living with his mother. He weighs 536 lbs. and is on oxygen. The sadness and desperation he conveyed in everything he said made me sad. Back to the process... so we waited. And we waited. Once we made it inside the building, they handed each of us a one page application asking our basic information and a handfull of questions. Then we waited some more. Finally after 9+ hours in line it was our turn. They broke us into groups of 15. Each group got 5 minutes in the room with one of the casting people. They asked us each the same questions. Name, occupation, how much weight we wanted to lose, which trainer we would choose and also what we hoped to take home from the ranch. We each answered and then it was over.

Now for my observations and what I really learned and took home from the audition. First, I was one of the smallest people there. Seriously. A few of my friends have told me that I am not really that big (even though I feel that big sometimes), now I understand. I understand that I really am nothing like any of the people who were in line. Nothing like them. I am smaller. I am stronger, both mentally and physically. I am athletic. I also realized that I never want to be like any of them. Ever. Looking around I noticed that so many of those people have already given up on themselves and on life. They view Biggest Loser as their last resort. Well, I don't. I've been doing this on my own and I will continue to push myself harder each and every day. There were people in line who had brought boxes of donuts, eating fast food and smoking. I wanted to scream. "THIS IS WHY YOU'RE FAT!! You want this show to change your life, but you really just need to take control and do it for yourself anyway." I say that yesterday lit a fire under my ass, because it did. More than ever, I want to help other people. I want to show them that it can be done on your own. I want to help other people get healthy. Stop relying on the easy things in life. Life wasn't meant to be easy. It was meant to be a challenge.

My sister told me that as I was going into the audition room, a very large man was looking at me and shaking his head. Then he said, "It really pisses me off that some people are here when they don't even need to be." Maybe I didn't really belong there in his eyes, but in mine... it was exactly where I needed to be. It was exactly what I needed to see. It was the fire being lit under my ass.

Friday, March 26, 2010

I took a night off. It was much needed. Two nights in a row of hard interval sets in spin class and my legs are wiped. I thought about going and lifting weights, but just felt like taking the night off was the right thing to do. I made spinach and artichoke chicken with garlic bread for dinner and drank some Murrayhill Vineyards Red Wine. I watched my daughter do the wii boxing. I relaxed! It felt so good and I woke up this morning feeling better than ever. My hip seems to be healing nicely. There is only irritation when I lift my leg repetitively. I'm planning on trying an easy 1 or 2 mile run this weekend to test it out. The Beaver Freezer Sprint Triathlon is next weekend and I feel ready for it. Cardio-wise I have this one in the bag! It's just that darn run portion that worries me a little. This weekend should boost the old LeeAnn confidence.

I have a busy weekend planned. It's a dear friend's birthday celebration and I have a fun, one of a kind, specially crafted, just for her gift to finish. Celebrate with her in grand style. A short run. And last but not least... the Biggest Loser Casting Auditions! Aaaahhh. Actually, I get nervous about it sometimes, but other times I am so excited about it. I want this so bad. I just hate that I get only 2 minutes to convey to the casting duo just how awesomesauce I am. The question they seem to want answered is: What makes me unique? So, I've been surveying... and the general consensus seems to be that I am fearless, blunt, driven, full of joy and love to laugh more than most people. I am still brainstorming what I want to say, but I think I have a pretty good idea. My friend Jess suggested that I do an interpretive dance. Haha. Somehow I just don't think I can convey all I need/want to in a 2 minute interpretive dance. Just saying.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010


I didn't go to swim this morning. I slept instead. To be perfectly honest, I am mostly ok with it. I needed sleep. I spent 2 hours on roller skates picking 5 year olds off the rink floor yesterday. Who knew chaperoning a kindergarten class to skate world would be so exhausting (I know you sense my sarcasm). After skating round and round and round, I hit the gym too. I did a nice 20 minute interval walk/run on the treadmill. It's nice that my hip seems to be healing. I think that I will start the running outside though instead of the treadmill. The treadmill seems to really bother it after 10 minutes, but I can chase 5 year olds around the park and have no issues. Anyway, after the intervals I took spin class. We did interval sets and I really thought I was going to puke about 30 minutes in. Normally during spin class I burn around 6 or 7 calories a minute (according to my lovely bodybugg). Last night I glanced down and saw 9.7. Aaaahhh. No wonder I was dumping sweat. No wonder I was huffing and puffing. It was HARD. You know what, I loved every minute of it. Tonight she says we're doing hill sets. Oh fun!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


So here's the deal. I won a scholarship to be on a Master's Swim Team. It was almost a month ago that I was awarded the scholarship. How many times have I gone to practice? None. Zero. Zilch. It's because I am nervous about it. I don't know why. There's really no reason at all for me to feel this way. I have tried to go. I chicken out. I've even gone so far as to pack my bag for the morning with all of my clothes and swim gear, literally leaving the only thing to do is get up and go. I've skipped it. I am the queen of excuses. I am the queen of something. Practice is every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday morning at 5am. Tomorrow is Wednesday. Tomorrow I suck it up and go.

Friday, March 19, 2010


Last night I spent 30 minutes with the man at the gym. I bribed him with food. I think I am getting the winning end of the deal, but his stomach may beg to differ. Food for training. I bring the man food. He trains me. Deal. Last night we ended up doing legs. Leg press, one legged squats, step-ups and a heavy weighted lunge/row circuit. Then I did cardio for 40 minutes.

I'm sore. My glutes and quads are speaking to me. They are telling me things like, 'hey, thanks for remembering us' and 'thanks for doing a heavy weight lunge and row circuit, we needed it.' I'll admit that I actually like being sore. Not the painful sore you get from overuse, but the sore when you know you've done just the right number of lunge/squat/step-ups/whatever to start building the muscles. I like muscles. I like working towards getting them. I like the idea that muscles are evidence. That's one of my favorite quotes. "Muscles are evidence." It's on my bedroom wall at home above my dresser. I look at that quote all the time. It's true. Muscles represent hard work and time and sacrifice. What's not to love about muscles? Don't get me wrong, I realize that as with anything too much of a good thing is not necessarily better. I don't want to be a body builder, but I do want the fitness. I want my muscles to be strong, to push me towards my goals, to be efficient, to be toned and lean and burning calories the way that bodies are made to. I like muscles.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I went to spinning last night. I have been missing it so much. I wanted to see how much of the fitness I've lost by being injured. Funny thing, I don't think I lost much. In fact, I was pushing myself really hard and barely burned 400 calories in class. My legs felt strong. My posture was great. I upped the resistance. The only time I really had an issue was during speed intervals. Those seem to bother my hip flexor injury a lot, so I used a higher resistance and slowed my legs a bit. I'd love to be 100%, but I know that it still will be a while before I am completely healed. I am thinking about going to see a sports injury therapist. There is one fairly close to my house and I think after almost a month, it's time to seek professional help. Last night I was really having a hard time breathing towards the end of class. Pretty sure I have allergies now. I think it might also be time to start carrying my inhaler with me to the gym. Breathing is kinda important.

Tonight I have a training session at the gym. Arms and abs. My favorite. NOT!

On another note, my weight is back up to 252. I am not going to change the little ticker because it's not going to be over 250 for long. I feel like I am back in the game again. Refocused on several goals. First, to be under 200. It's a long way off... but it's doable. Second, I would like to be able to pass the ORPAT test. It's the Oregon Physical Abilities Test. All police and corrections officers in Oregon must be able to pass it. Now it's one of my goals. I will pass that damn test!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Reframed or whatever...

I've been injured over 3 weeks now. I either have a cold or allergies or some messed up combination of both. I've been having issues at work. Basically, I am functioning at half of my normal self. After I posted yesterday, I had a little chat with a smarty. She reminded me that if I don't think I'm special or worth more, no one else will either. She's right. I deserve the best of what's around. I am just as special as the next person (if not a little more..haha). I just lack the self confidence to come out and say it. So here I am. Saying it. I AM SPECIAL DAMMIT!

I can't pinpoint the one thing that sucked all my self confidence, because it wasn't just one thing. The combination of being told by someone that I wasn't important enough to make time for. Being told that I am a terrible friend by someone else. Being looked at like I don't belong in a store. Being stared at as I sweat my ass off on the treadmill. Basically letting all of the outside influences take hold. Well, I've had it. I worked my ass off to get to where I am now. I am a good friend who'd be there in a heartbeat if someone needed me. I belong in the gym. If I'm not important enough for some people to make time for, it's their loss. Basically, I am awesome.

I decided I am going to the auditions. I am going to sparkle and shine and show them that I am the best choice for the next season.

I deserve to be on the BL. I deserve to show the world what I'm made of. I am going to lose the weight (with or without Bob and Jillian). I am going to be an Ironman.

Monday, March 15, 2010


Biggest. Loser. Tryouts.

The Biggest Loser is holding an open casting call for the next season here in Portland. I am really torn as to whether to go. My sister and a few friends have told me that I should audition. But, I just don't know. I don't think my 'story' is any more special or deserving than others.

I have enough self-doubt to last a lifetime. I hate critisism. I hate games. But, I love the idea of being able to focus on me and my weight all day every day. I know that I can push myself harder than most people. I have no "off" switch. I'm competitive. I watch the contestants whine and complain about not being able to do something and get mad. They can do it, they just don't want to. I'm not a fan of the game play on the show. My favorite contestant won my heart because she always relied on herself and never ever gave up. I want to be like that.

I'll post more about this later, but would love any and all opinions.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Snowman or snowcone?

When life gives you snow, my mom advised to make a snowman. Right now, I'd settle for a yellow snowcone. Life is coming at me fast and even though I know things will work out, as they always do, it's still easy to use it as an excuse to eat.

Last week was emotional and filled with stress and no matter how I tried to reframe my thinking, I was negative and I ate. I ate pizza. I drank an entire bottle of wine. I made meatloaf and ate a whole lot of it. It wasn't just any meatloaf, it was my special bacon, mushroom and swiss meatloaf. Yum. Not healthy. I ate chips and guacamole. I ate cornnuts. Have you ever looked at a package of cornnuts and wondered what exactly some of those ingredients are? Oy. But here's the deal. Yes, last week I stifled my emotions with food. I ate instead of cried. I'm ok with it. In the grand scheme of things, it was one week. Now I move on. Forward.

I ended my week of old habits last night at HH with a good friend. We talked about life. We talked some shit. She reminded me of why I can't let last week keep me down. She's right. This morning I started my day with some oatmeal and strawberries. Cup of coffee in hand. I have training tonight and will go to spin class (still listening to my body and not pushing my hip). I meet with the crazy lady about possible earning a little teeny tiny bit of extra $$.

Today I make a snowman.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Conversations with myself

I wonder if it's normal to have conversations with yourself? An entire conversation... where you talk to yourself in that back and forth way only a real conversation happens.

When there is a lot on my mind, I find myself doing this. It doesn't even have to be about something deep, just a way to process whatever thoughts are in my head. There's a commercial for NCIS where Abby the lab tech is moving her hands above her head and when someone else starts talking to her she replies, "shhhh... I'm rearranging my thoughts." That's sort of how I feel about talking myself through everything that's in my head right now. For the last few days my brains have been mashed or swirled together into a nasty goo which did not allow me to even put complete thoughts together. After a terrible nights sleep, today is surprisingly much better. My thoughts have been reorganized in a neat little package and placed on their appropriate shelves. I have a new, more positive outlook on things. I am ready to rock.

Ready to rock. Oh, but I'm still injured. I've been taking it easy, doing exactly what the good doctor told me to do. Slowly, I am feeling better. I know that this will be the hardest time. The time when my hip feels pretty ok, but not 100%. The time when I am itching to get back to training. Tonight I continue my take it easy plan. Maybe 20 minutes on the eliptical and 20 minutes on the bike. Maybe some light weights. NO running. NO stairs. Stop when it starts hurting. Oy, did I mention this sucks.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Back on track...

The thing I struggle with most is eating. I admit it. I like food. I like the way it tastes. I like cooking. I like cooking for other people. I use it as comfort. I, like many other overweight people, have used and abused food for most of my life. It's always been there for me. When I am happy, I celebrate with food. When I am sad, it comforts me. When I am bored, it occupies my time. When I am lonely, it's always been there. Always.

But, my relationship with food is changing. The more motivated and focused I am to Ironman, the more I have started looking at food as fuel. Sure, I still have those times where all I want to do is stuff my face with a plate of nachos or some homemade lasagna. But, those times are becoming fewer and fewer. I eat when I am hungry. This might seem like such a simple thing, but for anyone who has struggled like me, it's not. I have started listening to my body. It tells me when I need to eat and usually what I need to eat. I very rarely eat salty things. But sometimes my body says, 'give me the salt' and I have started obeying.

It seems to be paying off. I am down 3.4 lbs. this week. Yay! I hardly worked out last week due to my injury, so this weight loss is the result of following the plan, drinking lots of water and still doing what I can to move (like swimming). 3.4 down, 48.6 to go.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Weekend fun...

I had a great time this weekend, although friday was a really rough day. I got some more bad news and finally all of the emotions that I had been feeling during the week came out as tears. I cried the entire way home from work, composed myself for about 2 minutes and cried when I picked up Amaya. Luckily I have the sweetest girl ever and she gave me a giant hug and then told me she was gonna take extra care of me this weekend. Awwww. When I got home, I decided that I really needed to clear my head and seeing how I'm still injured I thought a swim would be great.

I dug out a swim workout from the end of TNT season last year. I figured that if I pushed myself really hard, then I wouldn't have time to think about everything else going on in my life. Boy, was I right. I started with a 200 warm-up. Then I did 6 X 50 sprints with :15 second rest. Followed that by 100 with :15 rest. 200, :20 rest. 300, :30 rest. 50 easy. Repeat that set again. 6 X 50 drills. 100 cool down. It felt good. My head was clear. My arms were tired. It was exactly what I needed to start the weekend.

Saturday morning I met my friend at the gym. We did 10 minutes bike, 20 eliptical and then I did 10 or so minutes of weights. My hip is still giving me trouble, so I am trying to take it extra easy and really listen to my body. Spent the rest of the day with Amaya playing and painting water color pictures and watching Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. Super cute movie and Amaya loved it. After that, I picked up my sister and we went to dinner to get her pumped up for the inaugural bull ride. We drove to Duke's (a country bar) and Tina began downing the liquid courage. Once she was ready, she hopped up on the bull and rode like an NFR champion. After a few more people had gone, I decided that I would join the ranks of the brave and have a go at the bull. It was actually fun and I'd even go as far to say that I would do it again. Who knew that I would ever have the confidence to do something like that. Sober even!

Sunday I picked up the house a little and took Amaya to the ballet. We went to see Midsummer's Night Dream. It was amazing, although it didn't end so well. About halfway through the second act, there was a power outage and the entire block was out. They ended up cancelling the rest of the performance due to safety issues. It was sad, but Amaya and I still had a great time. We went home and I decided that I would make some lasagna. It's a bribe really. I want to trade home-cooked meals for personal training. I think it's pretty fair. I even offered to clean someone's house. We'll see if it pans out.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Two days off.

It was suggested by a few friends that I take two full days off exercising. Never in my life did I think that taking two days off exercising would create an issue, but I find myself struggling to not go to the gym. I want to go to the gym. I like sweating and feeling my muscles shake. It shows me that I am working hard. That I am going where I've never gone before. I didn't go to the gym yesterday and I didn't pack my gym bag this morning. It sits on the shelf waiting for me. For tomorrow.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

I'll never learn...

Yesterday I saw an acupuncturist. There's a new place right by my office and I decided I would give it a try. I filled out all their little intake forms and went to the appointment feeling prepared. Prepared to heal. I met with Dr. Wendy and she began the usual questioning. Why am I there? What did I do? How long has it hurt? What I like most about alternative medicine is that they treat the whole body, so she asked me about my sleeping patterns, how I eat, etc. After about an hour, she had me get up on the table and began sticking the little needles in the points she deemed necessary, covered me with a space blanket and turned on some quiet music. She left the room and I passed out for 10 minutes. There is something about those little needles that makes me sleepy. Wendy came in and adjusted the needles again, letting me rest another 10 minutes or so. She brought me some supplements she wants me to try. An herbal anti-inflammatory so I can cut back on the ibuprofin, an essential fatty acid to get my system more regulated and hopefully help me get some sleep and some castor oil to rub on my hip-flexor at bedtime. I left feeling rejuvenated. Less pain and happy to have another plan to care for my body.

Went back to work and decided I was going to the gym after work. What was I thinking? I spent 10 minutes on the rowing machine before my hip starting bugging me. Not bad. I spent 5 painful minutes on a spin bike. Idiot. Lifted some leg weights and decided that 20 minutes was enough. I changed into my swimsuit and sat in the hot tub for 15 minutes. The hot tub felt so good. My muscles relaxed a bit, heck even I relaxed a bit. But, I knew as I walked out of the gym that I needed to rest my hip. I had spent such a minimal amount of time at the gym and done some damage. It's time for me to take care of myself and for once listen to my body. Tonight I am going far away from the gym to visit a dear friend who lost his daughter on Tuesday. I need to give him a hug. One that's long overdue.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

From today...

I find myself at some ridiculous crossroads today. Feeling down with really no reason and being overly critical of myself. It's my fault really. I brought it on myself. But, for anyone to truly understand where my head is at now, you need to know where my head used to be.

You see, I used to weigh 367 lbs. Noone knew except me cause I knew how to hide. I avoided pictures. I wore baggy clothes with spandex shrinker dealies underneath. I wore a size 32 pants. Not waist, but size. I wore a 26/28 shirt or a 3 or 4x. I never went anywhere and buried myself with work and food and pretty much anything else that would make me temporarily forget how miserable I felt. Miserable. That's pretty much the only word to describe how I felt. I stopped doing all the things that I love and really stopped being who I am.

I got completely fed up with my weight holding me back from doing things that I love like soccer and swimming. I started playing soccer again. At 367 lbs., it is not easy to play soccer. I lost a few lbs. playing, but nothing significant. I started weight watchers and found a walking buddy. I lost 40 lbs. Then my walking buddy moved to Arizona and I stopped going to meetings and gained every one of those 40 lbs. back. And I lost another couple years of my life hiding but dropping a few lbs. without even trying.

Last year something in me changed. I stopped hiding. I joined Team in Training. I started losing weight but not really keeping track. Over a period of 6 months, my weight dropped to 280 and I completed 2 sprint triathlons and an olympic distance triathlon. I found a love for triathlons that I don't even feel for soccer (a sport I've played since kindergarten). Immediately after the triathlon, I felt lost. I gained 20 lbs. back. I was at 300 lbs. starting to feel old habits coming back with a quickness. So last October I rejoined weight watchers. I started going to the gym religiously. I started becoming a new person. I worked hard at it. Counting points and hours of cardio began paying off. I dropped 40 lbs. pretty quickly. I signed up for a 25k trail run. I registered for triathlons. I set a very big long-term goal of completing an Ironman. I became crazy! Haha.

Last Saturday, I completed the trail run. 25k on a trail. It was brutal and one of the most challenging things I have ever done. But, I got injured. My hip-flexor is painful and swollen. It hurts to even walk. And this is why I find myself at a ridiculous crossroads. The old me would give up, return to the old habits and be done. The new me wants to hit the burn at the gym, but is forced to rest and visit the acupuncturist. My mind does not like this one bit. I whine. I complain. I want to go to the gym. I NEED TO GO TO THE GYM! But, what I really need is to figure out a better outlet for my feelings besides running on a treadmill for an hour. My sister suggested this. A way for me to let people know how I'm doing with my training, weight loss, etc. And here it is... I am going to continue counting my weight watchers points, going to the gym (easy easy easy for now) and working towards that Ironman. I am going to post my weight online for the world to see. Nothing will hold me accountable for my weight loss like letting the whole internets know when I've been good or when I've been not so good.

Wish me luck. My current weight is 252 lbs. My goal is to be under 200 by November 21st. the day I would like to register for Ironman 2011. Haha. I really am a crazy new person.