I guess I run now

or I’m trying to anyway.


Run Tiny, Run!

Our girl tiny2b is probably running her race as I write this. Can’t wait to hear how she did!

I chose walking over running today. My new friend the librarian & I planned to meet in town for breakfast & to visit the farmer’s market, so I walked in to meet her. Managed to add a mile onto the trip by backtracking one mile to get to the local trail & taking that rather indirect (but prettier) route into town.

& ya’ll I was so good at breakfast, which is really one of my weaknesses! I planned out my meal in advance…eggs benedict, but last night I praticed saying “no hollandaise, please” and “can I get fresh fruit instead of homefries”…& no, I’m not kidding about the practice runs, both of those statements run counter to my instincts, so I had to hear myself say them out loud before I’d trust myself with a breakfast menu 🙂

Turns out I didn’t have to use those phrases at all…figured out the cheaper way instead: I ordered 2 poached eggs with an English muffin (sadly not whole grain & I forgot to ask for no butter) and I asked for tomotoes on the side instead of potatoes…This I stacked into my own healthier eggs bennie. & it was totally satisfying, filling, but not so much food that I felt guilty or sick.

Then we hit the market, but I have tons of veggies still to work through before I leave town next week, so I settled for getting only grape tomatoes from the same vender I hit up last week…& they’re amazing. & after that we walked around down town for over an hour.

She started at the university the same year I did (so, 2 yrs ago) & she’s had the same struggle meeting people. We’ve been sort of slow forming a friendship, but once we discovered how much we both like the local brew pub, that sort of helped things along.

Anyway, as we were going into all the stores on Main St that we’ve both just walked by for the last 2 years, she said, “I think the last time I went shopping with another woman was over 2 years ago, with my mom.” Ditto for me. Pretty sad really, but it just made the chance to shop with someone that much more fun. She’ll be a good friend, I think as she’s a regular at the Y, wants us to run on the in-town trail some time, & is training to run the 5k at our university in October. She runs about a 7-8 minute mile, but she wants me to get down to a 10-minute mile so we can run it together.

So it was a good day & I proved that I can face a breakfast menu & make wise choices. Will I always make wise choices with breakfast menues in future now? Oh, undoubtedly not, but I really think ordering more healthy options will get easier with practice.

Okay, one more before I’m done tonight. Last night I decided I wanted pasta, so I cooked up & combined a cup of whole wheat pasta, 2 chopped chicken sausages (turns out these are only 2.5 oz a piece), and a ton of veggies (summer squash, zucchini, grape tomoatoes, spinach, asparagus, & onion). 1 cup of pasta & 2 sausages cause I figured I’d have leftovers to eat tonight too. & I did! I did have leftovers! I’m going to say that again, cause it rarely happens with pasta: I HAD LEFTOVERS! In fact, after I added all the veggies I thought I needed, I ended up with enough for 3 additional meals (just finished the first).

Now in the past I might have thought “I’m making all this extra for leftovers.” And then I’d have sat in front of the TV & mindlessly worked my way through all or most of whatever I cooked. But last night I made a point of taking out the storage containers first & displaying them on the table, and I made sure the salad took up half my plate, and when I was tempted to get up and have another yummy portion, I sat there & gnawed a few olives until the temptation passed and it was safe to get up and clean the kitchen.

Okay, sorry for the drawn-out post tonight…gee, what’s new?…but it’s my 12th week doing this, so I’m starting to notice changes: big ones like there’s actually leftover pasta in my fridge & little ones like I went from having butter at least once a day to having it maybe once a week, if that much. & while the numbers on the scale haven’t changed much in the last 12 weeks, I feel like my relationship with food & exercise really has. 🙂

Food today:

Breakfast/lunch: 2 poached eggs, English muffin with butter, 4 tomato slices, 3 bites of a slice of bread at the farmers’ market (so not worth the calories).

Snack: 1 WW toffee

Dinner: salad & pasta/sausage/veggie dish

Snack: fat/sugar free pudding with lite cool whip

Exercise: 7 mile walk

P.S. I’m down .8 pds from last week…it ain’t much, but it’s still a loss.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 31, 2008
At 4:40 pm
Comments : 5

Truly shameless piggy-backing onto getupnow’s goal

Okay, so I’ve been doing this running/dieting/blogging thing for 12 weeks now & I have to say that while I’m happy with where I am in my thinking, in my eating, in my new food habits/rules, and in my general fitness, I’m not too pleased with losing the equivalent of only 1 pd a week during that time. I really hoped I’d be further along with my weight loss by summer & it ain’t happening!

So getupnow is setting a 10pds in one month goal for herself & I’ve decided to piggy-back my so-called weight loss goal for this month onto hers. Big deal seeing as I probably won’t meet my last goal of 6 pds in 4 weeks (and only one week to go on that one!). But getupnow’s so goal-oriented and motivated that I’m hoping some of what she’s got will rub off on me.

I think my plan is to continue counting steps & running 3x a week, adding in pilates and lots of walking (and maybe some 8-min workouts) four days a week, and cutting my portions back down to a healthy level (I added some info about this to my rules page) with even more leafy greens in everything.

The only fly in the ointment is a 1-week trip home to see family, but I’ll just have to have some clear boundaries set before I come home about what I will & will not eat. Tough one: mom’s a great, old-fashioned Irish cook. But okay, enough worrying about what could go wrong 2 weeks from now.

It’s not my place to ask, of course, but is anyone else interested in joining this little experiment?


Breakfast: bran flakes & blueberries

Lunch: big salad with cooked asparagus, grape tomatoes, hb egg, crumbled bleu cheese, pecans, and lite honey mustard dressing.

Dinner: pasta/chix sausage/veggie dish, small salad

Snack: ww toffee & fat/sugar free pudding with lite cool whip

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 30, 2008
At 11:26 am
Comments : 4

No Sleep ’til Brooklyn!

The Beastie Boys got me through my run today.

Went back to the gym, making sure Tuesday’s run wasn’t some kind of fluke. & it wasn’t, apparently. I guess I run 25 minutes (in a row!) now. So .15 warm up walk, 1.75 run, 5 min walk, 5 min run, 4 min walk, & a run to beat the band at the end (note: for me, “beating the band” is starting at a speed of 4.4 & working up to 4.8…so, maybe “beating the four-piece ensemble” or even just “beating the piano player” would be more appropriate here). Then I finished off with a short cool down walk…”cool down walk” is also a misleading phrase as it typically takes about an hour before the red in my face fully disappears after a run 🙂

Had a good day looking at houses after that. Don’t know if we found one yet…haven’t heard what hubby thinks of the pics I sent him…but we’re getting closer anyway!

Food Today

Breakfast: bran flakes & blueberries

Snack: 100 cal granola bar while house hunting

Lunch: bowl of chicken sausage soup (last of it)

Snack: 2 WW toffees

Dinner: 1/2 chicken sausage mixed with brown rice, asparagus, & kale, big salad.

Snack: (AGAIN!) fat/sugar free pudding with lite cool whip

Exercise: 3.25 mile run/walk (mostly run!), 30 min walk around the dog park, and I might try a mat or yoga video tonight…we’ll see.

Oh & obviously I decided against running a race tonight. I was only looking for something to motivate me to keep at it & I found that something with the longer run times…in fact, I can’t wait for my next run! That & the fact that the race was an hour away, which was kinda a pain & an expense….think I’ll spend the $20 entry fee on groceries instead (what’ll that buy me these days, like a tomato and a partial share in a head of lettuce?).

Update: I’m eating too much these days & I need to get back to policing my portion sizes…those small plates I use are getting pretty packed. No wonder I’m losing at a snail’s pace. The chocolates today & yesterday were a mystery until, of course, TOM. So, chocolates & pudding & granola bar with chocolate today…mystery solved. But I need to get this under control now!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 29, 2008
At 3:33 pm
Comments : 3

Long walk, otherwise uneventful day…

Took the dog for a 5 mile walk in the morning…down the local trail. Another 1 mile walk tonight…he’s pooped, but I feel good. Did my pilates video late, but it’s only 20 minutes & for the first time, it’s not kicking my butt too badly. Usually when I start it up again, it takes about 4 good weeks of doing it 3-5 times a week before I’m ready to move on to the advanced program, but I think I’ll be ready early next week.

Food was okay today.

Breakfast: cheerios and blueberries

Lunch: yummy chicken sausage soup & big salad

Snack: W/W chocolate toffee

Dinner: brown rice with asparagus, big salad, 4 mini crab cakes from Trader Joe’s.

Ooh, I went shopping & found the couscous brand that getupnow recommended. I figured I’d have to go to whole foods or get it online (it just looked too dern healthy for a regular grocery store), but there it was sitting next to the other brands. I’ll try it out over the weekend mixed with whatever veggies I find at the farmer’s market on Saturday…one of my favorite lunches is couscous mixed with roasted eggplant, garlic, and grape tomatoes…a very satisfying meal & this whole grain stuff will make it healthier too.

That’s all for now ya’ll! Good night!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 28, 2008
At 8:18 pm
Comments : 2

Yes I know, yes I know, yes I know!

More on the title in a minute.

A little nervous about my run today. I’ve been on like a week-long vacation from running &, as many of you know, I seem to be stuck in run/walk mode, unable to run for more than 10-minutes in a row without a nice walk in there.

So I figure my goal for this week is to stop thinking in terms of time & just run for a full mile. Fine. So I hit the treadmill, walk for .15 and start running. As I’m running, I’m thinking, “okay, if I can’t make it, I can shoot for a run of just .85, which will put me at a mile total.”

So I get to that point, a full mile with only .85 of running. And I think, “come on, just push through to a mile.” And, of course, I’m thinking about being able to tell ya’ll–who are always pushing through, who are always, well, going the extra mile with your workouts–that I finally did it.

So I did it. And then I saw that I was only about 6 minutes from running for 20 minutes strait. & I felt good.

So I did it. And then I saw how close I was to running a full 1.5 miles, so I pushed on through.

And I did it. And then I saw how close I was to running for 25 minutes, so I pushed on through & I did it! A 25-minute run covering 1.77 miles! Yay me! Finished up with a 5-min walk, 5-min run, 4-min walk, and a run at 4.6-4.8 to finish out the 5k.

Honestly, it was easier & funner than its ever been. I don’t know if it was the week off or the fact that I started taking glucosomine for my knees last week (& ya’ll no pain at all for the whole run!), or what…but the force driving me was all of ya’ll, your motivating me and inspiring me and giving me a reason to push myself. Sincerely, thank you all so much!

Okay, now to the title. Around about minute 18, this Katharine McPhee song came around on the shuffle. It isn’t as inspiring in the instrumental form that I’ve linked to, but the lyrics really get to me, especially these:

And it is me who is my enemy
Me who beats me up
Me who makes the monsters
Me who strips my confidence

I am carrying my voice
I am carrying my heart
I am carrying my rhythm
I am carrying my prayers
But you can’t kill my spirit
It’s soaring and it’s strong
Like a mountain
I go on and on

I am walking on the bridge
I am over the water
And i’m scared as hell
Cause i know there’s something better
Yes I know there’s something better
Yes I know, yes I know, yes I know!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 27, 2008
At 9:25 am
Comments : 4

The b!^&@ is back!

That’s right, I’m back on track. Feels like I’ve been gone forever, but my eating was okay while I was away & eventually I pulled out of my exercise slump. It’s amazing: we’d go out looking at houses for hours and hours every day & I’d come home exhausted, & check the pedometer to see that, really, I’d barely moved at all!

So hubby left on Friday and Saturday the dog & I set off in the morning, bound for the farmers’ market in town. It’s just over 4 miles round-trip, so we did some wandering around down town to add to our walk, but clearly I need to find a longer route to the market. Picked up some amazing grape tomatoes, 2 giant leeks, green leaf lettuce, and some delicious summer squash. Yesterday I used the leeks to make a really nice stock (cooked and creamed them in chicken stock) and added some chicken sausage, potatoes, and a ton of kale for a really awesome soup.

Today I got a late start with my run, compounded by the fact that I’d left the shuffle on all night, so had to re-charge the battery. This was to be my first run on the local trail. Of course, my car was way below empty, so had to gas up first…$4.05! Then as I neared the trail entrance, it dawned on me that this was just a bad idea: first clue was that the road was blocked off, second was the giant crowds, third was the sign reading “Parade Route.”

So I came home, decided I was lacking motivation, and looked online for a race I could plan for. There’s one on Thursday night just outside of Flint, so I’m going to run tomorrow and then race on Thursday (if all goes well, that is). Settled for now to do .25 on the treadmill and a .75 run outside (damn hot). Then my 20-minute pilates workout (think I’ll be moving on to the more advanced one on Wednesday) and 8-minute buns.

Our girl tiny2b is training for her big race & has already jogged the race route! Go tiny!

Fit chick did a 5.5 mile run without even thinking about it, apparently. Now I ask you, will I ever get to the point where I’m running 3 miles & it just doesn’t seem long enough so, what-do-ya-know, I gotta go 5.5, easy peasy? Damn I’m so impressed!

I see feathers has left for vacation & not back til June…I know it’s not far off, but it seems like a long time. I think she practically promised us pictures of whales…at least, that’s how I read her post ;). soclose and A. are out of town too this weekend…with luck the gas prices kept most people off the road & they had an easy trip there & back.

getupnow’s got another winning recipe under her let them eat gravy post…a Peach French Toast Bake. Hubby loved the pesto so much, I can’t wait to try this out on him the next time I’m up there!

Finally, all I’m going to say is that once again this week, there appears to be a whole lot less of Josephine. She’s a dieting & exercising machine!

Okay, hope ya’ll have a lovely Memorial Day filled with family, friends, and yummy (but healthy) bar-b-que. 🙂

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 26, 2008
At 11:33 am
Comments : 2

Life seems to be getting in the way of my life…

Hubby left town today to go back to work on the diss. I’m hoping to get up to see him in two weeks before I go home to visit family for a week.

No luck on the home-search front, but not for lack of trying. Clearly this is going to take awhile.

Lost 1.1 pds. Not much given how long I’ve been off of the scale, but I’ll take it. Gee, I guess I have no choice with that one. And at least my steps from last week made up for my lack of steps this week, so I’m still on target to reach that goal 2 weeks from now.

Work stuff took center stage today, but I’ve promised the dog a long walk tonight, so with luck I’ll be on target for my steps today. I think I’ve decided the new training schedule won’t kick in until Monday. A new leaf, that sort of thing. Like my title says, this life stuff is really interfering with my exercise & diet. Of course, that means I haven’t adapted either of those things to the rather haphazard nature of my life and my schedule. I need to figure out how to do that next.

But I hope to get a long walk in tomorrow–I’m planning for a walk into town for the farmer’s market. I went last week & parking was crazy, so I figure the market will give me a destination to work towards & make the whole experience more pleasant since I won’t have to face traffic.

Oh, I came home today to a gift from amazon.com. Hubby helped one of his profs move last weekend & she gave him a $100 gift certificate (yeah, he was shocked by the amount too since he figured he was just being a nice guy). Anywho, I told him to use the money to help get himself a new iPod (his is a 4-year old Zen that’s shot) & mentioned I might even get myself an iPod shuffle with my “incentive” check….my MP3 player the university bought for me cause I do some audio work & podcasts with my students, but it’s an I-River (great for podcasts, but huge & not even vaguely good for running). Anyway, I guess he used the gift certificate to get me a lovely, delicate, oh-so-light, green and groovy shuffle. It’s so damn cute!

We’re not a romantic kind of couple, which works for me. He knows I prefer perennials in pots to cut flowers, we celebrate our anniversary with a toast every year, what we give each other for Valentine’s day is a promise not to do anything for Valentine’s day & we both feel awkward on the kinds of romantic dates and vacations some of our friends seem to thrive on. He bought me a new toilet tank valve our second Christmas together and installed it for me since mine kept running…bought me other stuff too that year, but I’ll always remember the tank valve. Anyway, the shuffle was unexpected & so sweet. His way of supporting my running.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 23, 2008
At 5:32 pm
Comments : 2

4000 steps? Are you kidding me?

As soon as I finish this post, I have a date with the treadmill.

Okay, house hunting is really tough right now. Everyone keeps saying, “wow, what a great time to buy,” but they have no idea how sad it is to go through these wonderful homes and know that families are selling way below market value cause their jobs are gone or they can’t afford the mortgage or they got talked into really bad home equity loans.

I’d say 80% of the homes we look at are unoccupied and of those, quite a few are listed as “short sale” (they’re selling well below what they owe, so they need the bank’s approval since everyone will lose money…except the buyer), and some are bank owned (but I refuse, REFUSE to buy a foreclosed home).

So I’ve spent the last 4 days coming down from the high of the run by wandering through the skeletal remains of dozens of families’ shot at the American dream.

Wow, downer, sorry, but I needed to get that out & hubby & the realtor don’t seem to be as affected by this as I am. & we go out again tomorrow. UGH!

Meanwhile, I’m looking for another race…think I’ll try one in the UP in late June. & I’ve talked hubby into doing a 10-mile walking race in mid-July. Kinda fun…the race starts at the park (on Lake Superior) where we were married & ends down the street from his house…I’ve decided (but he doesn’t know this) that we’re going to do that race every year…a good way to celebrate a long, happy, and healthy life together.

Speaking of a long, happy, and healthy life…if you haven’t already, check out getupnow’s site…she has some interesting links for C25Kers (including links to a blog by a guy who’s now moved on to 1/2 marathons). & a new blogger blondemommy34 is trying to transition from running in the winter to running in the summer…in other words, how the hell do you keep your running shorts from riding up?

So I think my post-house-hunting workout schedule is going to look like this:

Monday: run outside
Tuesday: pilates and walking
Wednesday: run on treadmill
Thursday: pilates and walking
Friday: run outside
Saturday: long walk (6-8 miles)
Sunday: we’ll see what I feel like.

Food was okay, not great, today

Breakfast: special k & blueberries
Lunch: asparagus thingy & 1 cup brown rice
Snack: granola bar (gotta stop eating those things, but they’re great to have on hand after 3 hours combing through homes)
Dinner: 1/2 pork chop (broiled), asparagus thingy, brown rice, salad
Snack: 1 scoop of…wait for it…Baskin Robbins coffee ice cream (240 calories). That’s right, I drowned my sorrows in ice cream & that’s more calories than beer!
Exercise: Oh, right, didn’t I say something about the treadmill? Okay, I’m on it (literally)!

Oh, one good thing to close with…soclose was right & the race times were posted online. Silly me…I had the timer on my shoe, so I should’ve known my timer started when I crossed the starting line, not when everyone else did. Anyway, my actual time was 46.33…still not Periwinkle or tiny2b speed, but I was pleased with it.

Update: did 50 mins on treadmill…a very slow 5k

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 21, 2008
At 7:33 pm
Comments : 5

Wow, where’d I go there?

Nearly 2 full days without posting & two days without reading blogs…UGH. I’m going to claim that it couldn’t be helped yesterday: meetings all morning & a deadline to meet in the afternoon…that led to another deadling first thing this morning…although how that led to an evening of beer drinking & a big salad (good, good) with fried chicken on top (oh dear!), I don’t know. & today I was just a cleaning and grocery shopping fool trying to get ready for hubby’s brief trip down here.

But I’m sure you can imagine the lazy food-fest that resulted from this lack of contact with, well, ya’ll over the last two days! I pretty much showed accountability the door & asked him to take Mr. Diet and Ms. Daily Steps with him. 🙂

But I’m back first thing tomorrow. Hubby’s in town so we can look for a house for when he moves down here in the fall, so I’m going to be up with the birds to do my usual routine of reading, writing, and running before we have to meet with the realtor.

We won’t talk about food yesterday. Let’s focus on the positive, today.

Breakfast: 1/2 grapefruit

Lunch: asparagus salad thingy

snack: 15 pretzels with 3 tbs hummus

dinner: salad, whole-grain rice, asparagus thingy, 4oz (so half of a) chicken cherry burger


Exercise: 45 minute walk around the dog park

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 20, 2008
At 6:53 pm
Comments : 3

Yeah, I think that was bliss…

5k today & lesson learned. What I thought was terrible running weather last week–overcast, cold, windy–was actually pretty ideal running weather today.

Did the 5k in 47:20 (or 47:19 or 47:21, I couldn’t tell with the clock). I think I did the first mile in about 13 mins, though, which is a new record for me, but I was sort of carried along at the beginning. Actually, it was a slow start & I started even slower since I started in the middle of the group & it took forever after the buzzer for me to actually cross over the starting line.

Next time I’ll be a bit braver & move closer to the front of the crowd so I don’t lose valuable seconds waiting for a few hundred other runners to start, but I don’t want to be first & get in the way of the serious runners either. The crowd became a problem a few times…sometimes a bottleneck as we moved from taking up the whole street to using just a sidewalk or a wooded path was just the excuse I needed to slow down, but other times they were just an annoyance to be got around. Note to self: need to practice running on the grass.

What fun & I can’t really explain why it was fun. But here’s what ya’ll need to know. The winner finished in 17:06, so she (and her ilk) were so far ahead that they didn’t even factor into my experience of the race at all. My people were the group I came to call the “C25Kers.” Walk some, check your watch, run some, check your watch, repeat. I felt pretty at home during this race, pretty in my element…& I think it was just the motivation I needed to continue running.

& damn it felt good to be done, driving home with a race number & a great t-shirt & a huge sense of accomplishment that was actually too big to fit in the back seat, so I threw it in the trunk instead.

Thanks again for all the encouragement ya’ll. You really kept me going during the race itself & during these last 11 weeks training for the race.

Oh, and soclose, the volunteers were amazing & I thanked as many of them as I could find (turns out, they’re spread out all over the course, sometimes to do nothing more than applaud you as you come along…nice people!).

Breakfast: special K & blueberries

Snack: granola bar

Lunch: 4 oz cherry-chicken burger & asparagus dish

Snack: 12 pretzels


Exercise: 5k plus 2 hours of looking at houses for sale

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On May 18, 2008
At 11:20 am
Comments : 5