2016 – I’m Coming For You

Welcome to the end of another fantastic year.

2015 was filled with ups and downs of a personal and fitness nature.
2015 was filled with happiness and sadness of a personal and fitness nature.dribbble-newyearnewyou_1x2016 will most likely also be filled with ups, downs, happiness and sadness of both a personal and fitness nature.

Ultimately it’s how you view the outcomes of each and handle the present matter of them that determines success of failure.

2015 had family members dealing with health crisis after health crisis and myself dealing with injury from being read ended on a snowy Sunday afternoon. It also had me dealing with a horrible job at the start of the year but by summer feeling like I had come home when I started a new job.

But I overcame them. I was there for my family when they needed me.  I got out of a bad career situation and into a much more positive one.

I also ran. I used it as an outlet, as therapy, as a way to champion for myself.

I dealt with bad race day conditions, mental breakdowns and injuries but over came them to finish all the races I started and hitting goals I set for myself.

2016 will only get better.  Still loving my job, although I could deal with less stress – but, I mean, who couldn’t, right?

I am registered for the 2016 United NYC Half Marathon having completed the New York Road Runners 5 Borough Series. I have a goal in my head that I will keep between and my personal trainer because if I don’t put it out there, I won’t be disappointed if I fall short…..though I am sure at some point I will announce it!

I am also gearing up for my first full marathon in 2016 – through the NYRR 9+1 program I qualified for entry in to the 2016 NYC Marathon!  In my head, training has already begun.

I am setting my fitness goals, which to me really are the only 2016 New Years ‘Resolutions’ that matter. I am lining up ways to achieve what I have set in my mind. I am scheduling workout session and runs and classes so I don’t skip or flak out on myself.

Sweet Workout AmbassadorI am also THRILLED to announce that I am a part of the #sweetworkout Ambassador program moving forward.  What excites me the most is the sharing, bonding, community that will help me stay on track to meet my goals while working with others to stay on track and meet their goals. Together we will conquer the fit world in 2016!

Magical Reappearance

importantI know, it’s been quite a while since my last post, for that friends I am deeply sorry. Sometimes your day life gets in the way of your online life.

I started an amazing new day job 4.5 months ago, it’s kept me quite busy, as well as stressed, but I love what I do. I’m a meeting planner by day, a runner by night.

IMG_20151012_102111Three weeks ago I did something I only vaguely gave thought to before this year – I qualified for the 2016 NYC Marathon through the New York Road Runners 9+1 Program!  Three weeks before that I qualified for the 2016 NYC Half Marathon through their 5 Borough Series program!

I somehow managed to run 4 races in 5 weeks – I pushed myself, buy smartly. I was careful with my training, I rested when my body said to rest, I ate properly, I listed to my trainer and I used various social media groups and posted as added motivation and inspiration.

After that I rested. I consciously decided to take a break.

I continued kickboxing once a week at my local ilovekickboxing.com gym.

I continued with my trainer once a week.

I attempted to make smart food decisions (something that didn’t always happen).

Now I am ready to get back in to my runners!

IMG_20151120_194443On Friday I decided I would run a local turkey trot. After I made the decision I found out it was a 10k, not a 5k like I thought (er, hoped?). But I stuck with my plan – I mean, I have to get back out there somehow.

In the mean time, I found that I have indeed gotten stronger. I can now plank for a minute! In fact, yesterday, I managed two 1:00 planks in a row at home.

I can tell from sessions with my trainer that he is pushing me harder because I am stronger. I can handle more.

I look forward to the journey the next year will take me on.  To getting in to a schedule, to continue to form habits, to making sure I get workouts or runs in while on travel, to not getting lazy or letting winter win.

I look forward to the continued support of my loving social media family here on the blog, on twitter and on instagram!  Keep the love coming and I’ll be sure to send some support when you need it to 🙂

peanuts winter

 

 

Forming Habits……Again

So, 9 days ago I finally kicked some sense in to myself and got back on Weight Watchers.

I already have the fitness habit formed (albeit a little modified with the car accident injury) so now it’s all about getting my eating habits back on track.
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As you know I work from home, so temptation is surrounding me all day long. Typically I eat a sandwich for lunch. Occasionally I’ll have a salad, except then I tended to have a sandwich for dinner – oops.

This week I focused on changing habits.  I made it a point to NOT eat sandwiches all week. That mostly worked – I had one sandwich all week long!

How’d I do that? It was actually rather simple once I went food shopping, once searched for recipes or attached pinterest for ideas.

I made a salad or omelette for lunch. I had a salad or some other meal for dinner. I made my own cucumber roll-up concoction. I went food shopping so I wouldn’t be tempted with bad food ideas.  I also started making the Weight Watchers Chocolate Smoothie with their shaker as my afternoon sweet treat. It was a great idea. I would make it with water + ice in the shaker. I used cubed ice and it would take easily take me 30 minutes or more to drink it all – definitely a lasting afternoon snack.

This week I also focused on my running. I managed to get 10.25 minutes in over the week. Monday and Wednesday I only hit 2 miles; my lungs have been angry, I have felt quite fatigued this week (not sure where that is coming from) so I listened to my body and ran what I was able.

Friday I hit the boardwalk again for a nice sunset run. My lungs weren’t quite 100% still, but my stamina and endurance were definitely feeling better because I managed 4.10 miles! This was my longest non-race outside training run in the 2.5 years I have been running. Clearly I haven’t been training properly outside for my half marathons. Though I did train hard on the treadmill last winter for the NYC Half Marathon, logging more treadmill miles than I ever have before!

The end result, I lost 2.2 pounds in my first week back. I have no expectations I can duplicate my plans and loss from last week in to this week, but I can try. Habits form slowly, day by day, week by week until you wake up and your habits are just part of your every day life without question.

How do you keep focused on healthy eating when its easier to make a sandwich or go out to dinner?

Sadness and Happiness; Bad News and New Beginnings

run dwarfsI know I’ve been quiet lately. I’ve been dealing with things.

At the end of May my insurance denied continued no-fault benefits from being rear ended back in March.  I am angry, frustrated, mad, sad, piss-off. I got depressed; I went in to a injuryfunk.

Just 4 days prior my ortho had just said that we would keep up the PT and Med Massage while allowing me to pick up my other fitness activities (kickboxing, full body circuit training, pilates, ect) because I was starting to feel better finally. I was starting to feel myself again, at least fitness wise. I was ready, eager, antsy, to get moving in my training.

Then the letter came.  DENIED.

I tried running.  I tried to move forward with beginning my full body training again.  But it didn’t go smoothly.  After two weeks, my neck was hurting, I was in pain again. At times it felt as bad as it did those first 9 days!

I discovered that I could not carry my laptop on my right shoulder (I am a righty). I discovered that even carrying a backpack on both shoulders would be uncomfortable a lot quicker than normal.  I could barely put a plate full of food in the microwave without it twinging.  Heck, taking off my sports bra one night left me tears again.

I found a temporary solution to allow me to run further than 1.5 miles at a time, but its just that, a temporary solution, a stop gap if you will, because I DO NOT want to have to wear KT Tape or Rock Tape on my neck for the rest of my life.

It really is a life saver the tape.  I will keep it on for 3-4 days at at time which allows me to not just run almost pain free, but do some every day tasks as well.

It is quite a timely find as on top of that noticed being received, I started going through an interview process for a new job.  This is a job I had found online, asked my brother-in-law to see if he could pass my resume along through HR (he works for a branch of the same company).

Well, he went on a vacation before he could find a way to pass it along. While I was dr suesswaiting for him, an HR Recruiter found me on LinkedIn and 5 weeks later I started with that company!  This is a full time meeting planner job (get ready for a lot of #lifeofameetingplanner hastags on my instagram and twitter!) remotely employment.

This is still helpful in dealing with recovery as I have the ability to move to the couch from the table when my neck is bothering me to much.  However, it also means a bunch more travel (something I am THRILLED about), but as I recently discovered from some travel – both business and personal – I have taken recently, I cannot carry anything heavy on my right side.  I won’t even be able to put any bag in the overhead bin.

But that aside, for the first time in a long time, I look forward to monday again. I am so excited where this job will take me.  Professionally –  I hope to grow more as a meeting planner, hopefully roam throughout the company, expand on meeting types I excel at, AND around the world to feed my travel addictions to see everything.

As a runner, I hope to be able to extend a trip here and there and run a race wherever I am, domestically and internationally (side note, anyone know where I can search races internationally?).

I hope your Monday is shining bright!!
Dream Sparkle Shine

Finding My Fitness Self Again

endorphinsAs some of you are aware, on March 1, 2015 I was rear ended during a quick, but horrible, snow storm.  The snow came down fast and furious.  It left the roads slick, slushy and dangerous.

Immediately upon impact I realized my neck was bothering me.  We plied me full of advil when I came home thus not requiring a hospital visit, but definitely requiring a visit the friendly orthopedist. At this visit, he informed me I had a sprained neck muscle along with the normal whiplash. Of course, my first concern about hearing this was whether he thought I’d be in OK condition to run the NYC Half two weeks later. (I’ll be honest, from the moment of impact, running this race was my second biggest concern – first, of course being, how seriously injured was I).

Anyway, a week and a half later, he informed me if I felt up to it, while taking proper pre-cautions, I should be able to run this race. He actually advised that aerobic exercise was good for healing injured muscles.

Well, since the accident, that race, plus two more plus a small handful of other days, totaling maybe 10 in all is the complete amount of working/exercises/fitness I have achieved.

I am frustrated because I have gained weight.
I am frustrated because when I cannot do full body strength training.
I am frustrated because my only attempt at the bike at the gym left my one neck muscle feeling sore and fatigued.
I am frustrated because fitness was something that, in the past two years since I have become absorbed in to the running/fitness community, has brought me great happiness.

I was feeling good about myself, about my habits, about my goals. I was happy with my progress. And pretty much, it came to a grinding halt.

Well, after a talk with the wonderful woman who is giving me medical massages (yes they are a thing, and they are amazing) I finally have put a plan in place to work my way up to where I was before the injury.

20-minute-workoutI realized that any movement is better than none. That stopping entirely is not the best way to help push my healing along, I just have to work in modifications and moderations.

Sunday I mentally put a plan in place. A place I felt comfortable with and confident in.
I am ok working out for 30 minutes, even if its low-intensity, because 30 minutes is better then sitting on the couch all day.

Now I just need to  back to 100% health so I can resume my complete rotation: running, full body circuit training with my trainer, kickboxing, pilates…..

Plan and simple, I miss it. I took my skipped workouts for granted because those were my choices, this is not, this is frustrating, aggravating, annoying and maddening.

Lesson here: never take a workout for granted.  don't take for granted

Sneaker Fail: Trying to Shop By Myself

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Since I started running two years ago, I’ve been a pick supporter of going to your running store, get fitted, by the sneakers they recommend.

I’ve been religiously doing this for two years, every time I need new runners.

This year the running store (Runner’s Edge) realized I had been placed in the wrong shoe last year. Seems there is a fine line between pro-nation and running slightly pigeon toed!

This year I was placed in Asics Cumulus and then Mizuno Wave Rider. I seemed to have killed the Cumulus in under 5 months! Once I fixed my lacing on the Wave Riders, my feet are extremely happy! But I have been wanting a second pair to alternate runs with.

So, around christmas time I was at the outlet stores. Asics was having an amazing deal – by one pair, get a second 50%.  I was placed in a pair of Asics earlier in the year, so I talked to those at the store about the pair I was placed in, and which other pair would give me the same type as what I had.

Well, that failed miserably. I left the store with two pairs of sneakers, GT-2000s. I loved the look of them, my feet felt secure in them, I was happy.

25 days later I was back at the store returning them.
I bought the wrong type.

I was at the Running Store with a friend (who listened to me and let me take her to get fitted!). I thought I would ask them if the seekers are the reason my ankle has been bothering me again (I was in a boot 5 years ago cause I bought the wrong sneakers).

He agreed with my assessment, the sneakers were the culprit. The GT-2000s were a vastly different type of sneaker then the Cumulus 16.

So for now I shall happily run in my Wave Riders. Hopefully they will last me until April – birthday present time!

Lesson Learned: don’t try to shop without finding out what type of sneaker you need, even if you have to get a list from all the brands!

NYC Half Marathon Training Log: Catch Up 2

a-one-hour-workout-is-4-of-your-day-no-excuses-430854Ok, Ok, I get it, I’ve been slacking in my posts – for that I sincerely apologize!

Life has gotten a bit crazy!  I started my new job last Monday, there was a lot of figuring out of hows to do’s, new projects to be worked on, organizing to be done.

As most of my job is done remotely, I was able to make a quick, last minute decision to actually go, trip down to MD for a friends good-bye party as she is moving to Cali next week for a new job! Looks like me and my friends like starting the new year off with new adventures!

Even with all the craziness that was going, I may not have blogged, but I did run!  I mean, if I had to choose, sorry friends, I choose following my training my plan. 🙂

Dec 31/Jan 1 – Ran the New Years Eve Dash 5K at Eisenhower Park
Jan 1 – Rest day instead of run day, legs felt jello-y in the morning…
Jan 2 – Actual rest day per the calendar, legs still felt off (way to cold for my body to have run outside on NYE)
Jan 3- Walked .5 as a warm-up; ran 3.31 in 45 minutes (outside). This was supposed to be a rest day, but I rested the day prior so I ran today.
Jan 4 – Ran 3.16 miles in 40 minutes (outside)
Jan 6 – Ran 3 miles in 45 minutes on the treadmill that is stuck at 1.5 incline. Had to drastically reduce my MPH and my run/walk interval to compensate for the added incline – I rarely have done hill work so my legs weren’t up to par yet…
Jan 7 – Cross Train day at the gym. Did 5 minutes on the rower, my hip sometimes doesn’t like when I do this machine so I had stopped, but am going to slowly get back in to it. Also did 6.4 miles in 30 minutes on the bike. Added some strength training to that after.
Jan 8 – Ran 3 miles in 42:32 minutes on the treadmill with the 1.5 incline
Jan 9 – Rest day + Travel day. Spent the majority of my day traveling from Long Island to Maryland via train and bus. Lucky, the bus had working Wifi so I was able to still work! Another remote worker perk.
Jan 10 – Promised myself I would still get my Saturday run in, so down to my friends gym I went. Ran 2 miles in 24:30 minutes. No forced incline so I challenged myself in other ways. I ran 1 mile without walking in 11:44 minutes, continued running for a total of 1.3 miles in 15 minutes without walking!
Jan 11 – again, due to travel and visiting my nephew, changed up the schedule as Sunday became a rest day.
Jan 12 – as I rested yesterday, I ran today: 3.5 miles in 50:47 minutes! I battled the treadmill and won. When I started I said I’d run to 3 miles, as that came up, I said I’d run to 45 minutes, as that came and went I said I’d run to 3.5 miles. I maybe could have gone a bit further, but I opted not to push myself as I have a run today as well!

Hopefully I will be back on track between working, training, travel that I will keep up the posts!  Now that I have started working again, a bit more of the travel posts will start creeping on in again – that makes me happy!

Hope you are keeping up your New Year’s goals!