23 February 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week Three

I had to go back and check what week this was in my training because I honestly thought it was only my second!

Monday: 1.19 miles
Tuesday: Walk at lunch
Wednesday: 1.5 miles
Thursday: 1.14 miles
Friday: Strength Training
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: Rest

On last week's post, my friend Mina said that not knowing how the C210K app works, she suggests to make sure I pick one run per week to push my distance. Basically a long run. The app has those built in, sort of -- the app is designed for someone who runs about a 10 minute mile which is definitely not me and are timed based. So, in a couple weeks it says Run 2 miles (or 20 minutes). 20 minutes is not long enough for me to have to do 2 miles so I was already planning on needing to adapt the plan as necessary, plus then my sister (who is using the same app) asked me a similar question related to distance. I know the importance of building up mileage, so it's definitely something I was planning on making work somehow.

Friday was my day to do some strength training and my job is awesome and super supportive of our living a healthy lifestyle, with a whole warehouse full of equipment like kettlebells! 

They offer classes at lunch, including cross fit, which was going on at the same time as I was there. I'm far too nervous and self-conscious to do the workout with them but I watched them and checked the board and I may try the workout on my own when they aren't there (because, again, nervous and self-conscious. Especially since some of it involved running laps and ZOMG some of them were fast!).

I've been using the treadmill for the past few weeks, but this past Sunday it was absolutely gorgeous out so I decided I needed to take advantage by going out for a short run. The funny thing is, the intervals that I've been doing on the treadmill were fucking hard outside. Like, I couldn't really do the whole duration hard and they weren't even that long all things considered. I usually run 30:30 intervals, sometimes making that 60:30 if I'm feeling really strong. These had me running for 90 seconds, so only 30 seconds over but man those 30 seconds made a big difference. 

At one point in the run I decided it was ineffective to keep trying to force my body to do something it clearly did not want to do so I went back to my normal intervals and had a much better run. I also ended up running faster than I did on the treadmill. 

The C210K app was perfect tool for getting me back in the groove of running, but now that I'm there I think I'll go back to my regular intervals and the original training plan I had set up a couple of weeks ago, long runs and all. I'll still need to use the treadmill for a little while longer so if nothing else I know I can maybe push my running intervals on there and still may play with them when I run outside but I don't think I'll be progressing with the app anymore.

I wanted to give it a try because I wanted to see if it could help me build up my running (versus my walking) but I think I've adapted so well to Run-Walk-Run intervals that it's really want my body likes and thrives on as a runner. Why fight against a good thing?

Want to join me on race day? Don't forget to enter my giveaway for a free entry!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

22 February 2016

Ambassador of the Week and a Giveaway for CLE Marathon Race Entry!

Thanks to Facebook's On This Day application, I discovered that my running anniversary was just about a week ago! It's still sometimes so surreal to think about the fact that I'm a runner. Not just any runner, but a 3x half-marathoner! Trust me, when I stepped on that treadmill for the first time four years ago I had zero expectations for any distance beyond just a mile so to be able to say I'll be running my 4th half-marathon this fall is so amazing. (Even more amazing? I've been using the treadmill these past couple weeks and I don't hate it.)

My first race was the Running With a Mission 5K at the Cleveland Zoo back in June 2012. I came in last place. But instead of letting that deter me, I've become a proud back of the pack runner. I host a podcast dedicated to the back and in July I will once again be presenting at FitBloggin about being a slow runner. I'm also currently writing a memoir about the subject that will be coming out next year.


Right now I'm currently training for the 5K/10K Challenge at the Cleveland Marathon and I am so happy to be back as an Ambassador for the second year in a row. My fellow runners are some amazing, amazing people and I am so grateful they are so supportive of this ol' turtle and even let me join them in the Akron Marathon Relay last fall.

As an Ambassador, I not only get to represent this phenomenal organization, I also get to give away a free race entry!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Entries will be accepted until Sunday, February 28th, 11:59 PM EST. Winner will be contacted by email and have 24 hours to respond. Free race entry is only good for a single distance (5K, 10K, 8K, Half, or Full) and is not eligible for the Challenge Series.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

17 February 2016

Weigh In Wednesday: Week Twenty Six

Starting weight: 259.8
Last Week: 262.4
This week: 264.4
Weight lost this week: +2
Total weight lost: +4.6

Aaaaaaaaaand the battle with the same five pounds continues. 

The whole thing makes me roll my eyes because I'm training now so I'm actually working out, far more than I have since the end of 2015, and I'm making relatively good food choices -- there's a nice balance there. 

Then this happens and I'm pretty much just like, Whatever. 

Is it that terrible? To be so cavalier about the fact that I seem completely unable to get below 260? Or is this some nirvana level of acceptance regarding my weight? 

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

16 February 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week Two

Monday: 1.12 miles
Tuesday: Rest
Wednesday: 1.06 miles
Thursday: Rest
Friday: 1.13 miles
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: Rest

Through a series of random situations I did no cross-training this week. Mondays I often do Zumba at lunch at work, but I had plans Monday night and because I sweat so much my hair is always a serious hot mess and I don't usually have time to shower and so I skipped Zumba. Then, because of said Monday plans, I was out late and so Tuesday morning spinning didn't happen. Then Thursday's Zumba class got cancelled because the instructor didn't feel well. On Saturday I did spend a good hourish walking in place but that was mostly because I wanted to binge watch The West Wing on Netflix but I couldn't in good conscious do that knowing how lazy my long weekend was going to be, so I made myself walk in front of the screen.

With regards to running, this time around I'm doing something new with my training.

I'm doing the 5K/10K Challenge as a Cleveland Marathon Ambassador and I'm less concerned about the 5K than the 10K -- I just have to practice running multiple days in a row like that.

The thing is, I haven't run a lot of 10Ks just as 10Ks. That is, I've run half-marathons which obviously include 10Ks but the 10K as a single distance is still not something I'm super comfortable with. My last one was back in December but before that it had been two years so this is still a somewhat unfamiliar distance for me.

Sissy is planning on running it with me (well, not with me-with me since she's faster, but you know what I mean) and she mentioned how she found a Couch-to-10K app to use to up her mileage and I thought that sounded like a really good idea. So I downloaded it myself and that's what I've been using. It's also why my miles above are a bit wonky, since the program is timed based, not distance based.

I used C25K when I first started running and I liked how it uses intervals to work you up to running the full distance. I use intervals regularly now but I sometimes wonder if I use those intervals as an excuse to not push myself harder. To push my pace, push my ability and especially push myself to a place of being uncomfortable while running.

Because I use 30 second intervals, I never get to that place of being uncomfortable and if I'm feeling particularly crazy, when using those intervals I'll sometimes run for a full minute every once in awhile but that's it.

As I'm writing my book, I miss running. Like, really running. Running longer distances. I don't mind being slow and I'm not saying that using intervals mean you're not a real runner. I mean, of course you're still a runner, but for me I think I'm at a point where I've given myself a bit too much slack and have allowed myself to get lazy. I've been running for four years now, it's time to start pushing myself again, to making myself uncomfortable and the app is doing that. But it's also showing me that I can run for those longer periods of time than just 30 seconds and if I keep at it maybe I'll be able to either get back to running completely or still utilizing intervals but with longer periods of running.

If nothing else, using the C210K app is making the treadmill far less boring because it keeps me engaged and the change of pace makes things interesting. I also am taking advantage of my Amazon Prime account, which allows you to temporarily download TV shows and movies to your device so that means I can watch stuff on my iPad Mini while on the treadmill in my building! I hate using data to stream and my apartment Wi-Fi obviously doesn't extend as far as I'd need it to.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

10 February 2016

Weigh In Wednesday: Week Twenty Five

Starting weight: 259.8
Last Week: 260.2
This week: 262.4
Weight lost this week: +2.2
Total weight lost: +2.6

It inevitably happens that after about a month or so of doing really well on the food front, I get so bored of it all and have what basically amounts to a "cheat weekend." That would have been this past weekend, so the gain was expected and earned. I'm not worrying about it whatsoever and for the past couple of days have been right back on track to eating my good, healthy, nutritious food (and for the most part not being bored by it).

The funny thing is, despite the scale I've noticed that certain articles of clothing are fitting differently. Better. Looser. A dress and shirt in particular I put on and was pleasantly surprised by how they fit and felt. So remember, don't always judge your progress by the number on the scale.

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

09 February 2016

5K/10K Training Tuesday: Week One

Monday: 0.5 miles + Zumba
Tuesday: Spinning
Wednesday: 0.5 miles
Thursday: Rest
Friday: 0.5 miles
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: Rest

This week really was about trying to get back in the rhythm and routine of working out again on a regular basis and for the most part I think I did okay. I managed to get by butt to spinning for the first time in about a month and I even faced the dreadmill.

One good thing about this is that I'm able to use both the training and the treadmill as motivation and inspiration for my book! So when I'm on the treadmill (like I was yesterday) and hating it, I just keep reminding myself You can use this later when you sit down in front of your computer. It helps, let me tell ya.

Luckily spring is around the corner so I'll be able to start going outside more, maybe even after work which is definitely new! For the past five years I've always had to work until 8 or 9 pm, but since starting my new job back in July I've had evenings free. It's going to take some adjustment to see if I like running at 6 pm versus 6 am so we'll see.

Want to join the fun? This week, my fellow Ambassador Emily is giving away a free entry to one of the races! 

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

03 February 2016

Weigh In Wednesday: Week Twenty Four

Starting weight: 259.8
Last Week: 261.2
This week: 260.2
Weight lost this week: -1
Total weight lost: +0.4

While writing last week's post I realized that I've been doing this weekly weigh in series for almost six months. When I started, I was at 259.8. When I weighed in on Monday I was at 260.2, which means I've basically maintained for the past six months and I'm totally okay with that. My weight has fluctuated, obviously, but no more than five pounds above or below that starting weight. I'm gonna go ahead and consider that a success.

I calorie counted last week with MyFitnessPal and I'm calorie counting again this week. I'm also weighing in every day which I know tends to go against most conventional wisdom but I am seeing it more as data points along a spectrum. (My weight for these posts still come from my Monday weigh in which I'm counting as my "official" weight.) I like collecting and analyzing data and see the scale as a feedback tool. How do the choices I make the day before affect the scale the next morning? Our weight naturally fluctuates so I'll be able to watch trends -- does it go up during certain days of the week or, ahem, times of the month? (There might be color coding involved in that last one.)


Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus

02 February 2016

Return of Training Tuesday!

Because I'm running the 5K/10K Challenge Series at this year's Cleveland Marathon, I don't really have to start training for another month or so. But all of my fellow ambassadors are already training and I'm feeling kind of left out. I know that I can just, like, y'know, run and cross-train and stuff but it's winter and cold and dark out. So, basically I have zero motivation to maintain an unstructured workout regimen. I deal much better with a set schedule or training plan. I like having things to check off.

One new thing that's getting added into my schedule is Zumba!

When I started my new job back in July I was super excited to be working for a company that is really proactive about encouraging healthy living among employees, going so far as to offer fitness classes during lunch. I was actually really excited about the fitness classes but it took me six months to work up the nerve to work out with co-workers. I mean, y'know, there's that whole changing in the locker rooms and getting all sweaty and making an ass of myself and then going back to work.

But a couple weeks ago I finally decided to give Zumba a try and I had so much fun! They offer it twice a week and the Monday session includes something similar to strength training which is definitely something I need in my life.

So check back next Tuesday to see how my first week went!

Love from the ashes,
Lady Lazarus
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