Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Flashing Children and How I Did at Weigh-In

I haven’t written much lately because I haven’t been home much to write. I gained 1.6 pounds today. It breaks my heart a little, but I also haven’t really exercised (at least now how I normally do) in two weeks. It’s driving me nuts. I did get my bathing suit from my parents’ house this weekend, though, and did laps at the Y today. I’m doing that again Thursday and probably Friday, too. It’s very refreshing. And my goodness is it a workout! I was sweating my ass off in that pool. Which is a little gross considering that other people were also doing the same thing, thus we were all swimming in each other’s sweat. I have to stop talking about it now.

One last thing, though. I burned approximately 185 calories for 15 minutes! (Only 15 minutes because my bathing suit strap kept coming undone in the back. There was also a children’s swimming class, so I nearly flashed a group of 5-year-olds. I had to stop at 15 minutes because I didn’t want to get arrested.)

Yesterday I went on a 26-mile bike ride. It was about 95 degrees and it was awful. The ride itself was nice. The trail (Ghost Town Trail) is in great shape and is very scenic. But the heat made it unbearable. By the time I was done I had a heat rash and a killer headache. But I did 26 miles. I also wore my heart rate monitor for the first time! Woohoo! It was fantastic, but Clay doubted the 3,000+ calories it recorded. Sure enough, I checked when I got home and various websites said I had burned about 1,500 calories. My monitor counts distance and elevation, but not heart rate, when calculating calories. And the elevation component is a bit jumpy at times, so the calorie-reader is very inaccurate when it comes to biking. All the forums I found said that the running/walking calorie count is pretty accurate, so I hope once I can start doing that again I can cash in on those calories.

I’m still bummed about those 1.6 pounds, but I’m hoping swimming helps me out there. I knew I gained, too. I could see it in my face. Hannah said that was just water-weight in my face, but I know better!

My stats:
Total Weight Loss: 8 pounds
Exercise (yesterday): Biking
Distance: 25.65 miles
Time: 3:36:09
Average Pace: 8:25/mi
Average Speed: 7.1 mph
Max Speed: 14 mph
Calories: 3156 (more like 1500)
Average Heart Rate: 143 bpm
Max Heart Rate: 161 bpm

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I didn’t post yesterday because I didn’t get home until late and was pretty tuckered by the time I packed for Clay’s and got my lunch ready. Weigh-in went okay. I stayed the same; no loss, no gain. That’s okay. I keep telling myself that. No gain is better than a gain, right? I’m a little worried though because my podiatrist told me no walking or running for a month. I have tendonitis in the tendon that supports my arch. Ugh. But he said that once it’s healed there’s no reason I couldn’t start running again. Sometimes it comes back, but he is hoping that it happened because I changed my exercise routine so quickly. I guess going from the arc trainer to actual running is more jarring to your body than I thought.
So no picture. I look the same. I feel heavier though. Hannah suggested that I start swimming, which is a great idea. I got the schedule from the Y and highlighted all the swim times. This weekend I am getting my bathing suit from my parents’ house and I will start a swimming routine next week in place of running and walking.
I also got my heart rate monitor. I haven’t worn it yet (because I haven’t really exercised) but I am going on a bike ride on Monday so that will be its debut. I love it so far though. It’s a lot easier to use than that cheap Timex. Slightly bigger though, but it displays so much more on the screen that I don’t mind. I also have the big overnight bike trip the first weekend in June. Thirty-two miles one way. Eee! And the first leg is all up hill. Cross your fingers for me! I hope that I can give my foot enough rest by then that I don’t severely reinjure it. I think my bike shoes will help. Hopefully.

Friday, May 20, 2011


I did a spinning class at the Greensburg YMCA tonight and it was pretty nuts. A lot harder than the one in Ligonier. I noticed right away that the pedals on the bikes were different than the ones in Ligonier. They were smaller and pressed on my foot in a bad way. I knew standing was going to be a problem because of the pain in my left foot (I have a podiatrist appointment on Monday). Also, the motion on these bikes wasn't as fluid. I could not make a smooth pedal rotation while standing. It was all choppy and awkward, which only hurt my foot worse. The seats were more comfortable though, so that's something. These bikes had ten-speed type of handles that shifted back and forth. Although my instructor (who I really liked) didn't utilize them he said that other instructors do.

With all the bad points, it was still an amazing workout. I couldn't stand much, so I tried my best to push myself to the limit while I sat. The instructor, Jeff, was encouraging and the few others that were there (4 total w/o Jeff) were very nice. I am going to see how my foot feels tomorrow but I would like to make this a regular Friday night activity. I earned 12 activity points for the 45 minutes I rode and it was worth every bit.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

A Surprise

I wasn't expecting much in today's weigh-in because I had all but stopped any physical activity after Wednesday of last week. But, I ended up losing 3.4 pounds for a total of 9.6 pounds so far! What a great surprise!

I think next week will more accurately reflect my lack of exercise for last week (I suspect your body takes a while to catch up to your actions), but I know I am sticking to the WW plan and I am mentally preparing myself for a break-even and won't be discouraged by it. It feels too good to be true at this point, a loss of over 2 pounds each week. But believe me, I'm enjoying it.

Also, I purchased my heart monitor today. Woohoo! Clay and I are going on an overnight bike trip the first weekend in June (42 miles one way -- eek!) and I wanted to get it in time to figure it all out and test it. It should be here by May 27. I hope I like this one as much as I want to.

In my side-view picture you can see a difference in my body from the previous weeks. At least I can. And it feels great. Also, it looks like I maybe have a slight case of spina bifida in my front pic, but I assure you I do not. I was just rushing around to get in place before my computer took the picture.
Weight Loss This Week: 3.4 pounds
Total Weight Loss: 9.6 pounds

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Sunday of Nike

Yesterday we were supposed to bike, but it was raining off and on so we decided against it. I was half relieved because of the foot issue I'm having. Clay wanted to look for shoes, so we went to Monroeville and hit up Famous Footwear.

Now, Clay has these amazing Adidas sandals that have this plush memory-foam type of padding. They are wonderfully comfortable. Yesterday, I found a Nike version of the sandal:
Clay knew about my foot problem and has witnessed the ridiculous swelling that takes place on a daily basis and he was nice enough to buy me a pair. What a sweetheart. I wore them all day yesterday and they were very comfortable. The pain is still in my foot, but these little guys helped the rest of my foot feel much better. It's sort of like walking on marshmallows if you think about it.

I have my doctor's appointment today and I hope he gives me good news about my feet (i.e. they're fixable and I don't have to stop running). My fingers are crossed.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

A Swollen Weekend

It’s been a pretty activity-less weekend. Hannah and I walked/jogged and did legs on Wednesday, then I had some rough work-hours on Thursday and Friday so no workouts there. Also, my foot started swelling on Friday, which isn’t odd since it swells all the time, but by the time I got home, which was fairly late for a work-night, I noticed that there was a significant pain in the arch of my foot which increased in achiness throughout the night. Sleep brought little relief to the swelling and only allowed the pain to set in more. So now there's a pain in my arch that wraps up and alongside the inside of my foot toward my ankle. I kept ice on it for a few hours today and that helped the swelling, but it’s still painful/achy. Luckily I have a doctor’s appoint on Monday and can figure out what’s going on. I hope it’s not from running. Instinct is telling me it’s from our one-legged squats. My feet always hurt after doing those.

Took Hannah to my parents’ house today. I always eat like a jerk when I go home, so I planned my meal beforehand (chicken salad and chicken soup) and was prepared for going over my daily allowance just a bit. I haven’t been able to even meet it lately (I’ve been coming in at least five points shy a day for the past week), so I was okay with using some of my additional 49 points. And I even managed to go for a walk with Hannah.

Tomorrow is biking and I hope one of two things happen: 1.) my foot feels better or; 2.) my bike shoes make it possible for me to ride my bike with little to no pain. I need the exercise for sure. I’m feeling slothy:

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

The Type of Support I Need

Our meeting topic yesterday was “Support.” About the people around us who support us, how they do so, and what to do if they don’t give us the support we need. I almost skipped the meeting, because I had some work to do and felt like I was neglecting it by sitting in a meeting about weight loss. I am so glad I stayed.
My leader’s first question was “Ask for the kind of support you need.” I wasn’t sure what she meant by that. Support is support, right? At least I never broke it down beyond that concept. The more she kept talking, though, the more I realized how wrong I was. I thought of my three most supportive people in my life right now: Hannah, Clay, and Kristi. They are all giving me the support I “need” without me having to tell them. Then I thought of other people who have tried to support me in my past and how I bulked at their support and ended up doing the OPPOSITE of the very thing they were supporting. It was because I didn’t realize they were offering me the wrong KIND of support and I was getting angry at their bossiness or they’re “you know that so-and-so is packed with sodium.”
Then my leader said a very common-sense thing and I was a little annoyed at myself for not having thought of it before: we give the type of support we wish to receive. And that’s just it. I support people the way I need to be supported. Luckily my support system was naturally in-step with my type of needed support, because I don’t know that I would have been able to pinpoint the issue otherwise (at least not before this meeting).
So thank you, Hannah, Kristi, and Clay, for giving me the support I need, and I hope to be an equal support to off three of you.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Exhaustion Wins

This will be a short entry because I am exhausted. I went for my first bike ride of the season yesterday. Did the 5 Points trail in Greensburg and biked approximately 14 miles in 95 minutes. That equates to 10 activity points. Woohoo! It was such a great day for a ride. Not too hot and just sunny and breezy enough. Perfect. Of course everyone else thought it was perfect too because the trail was packed. Sunday we’re going to the Ghost Town trail near my parents’ house.

Tonight was supposed to be my day of rest. I was pretty worn from the bike ride and had a ton of stuff to get done around my house, so I set to work and soon felt like I was wasting time inside. So I took a 20-minute walk/jog. I only counted a few of my jogs (one was one minute and another was 45 seconds). Hannah’s coming over tomorrow so I’ll time myself then.

Now onto the big event. It was weigh-in day today. I am happy to report a loss of 3.8 pounds! That’s 6.2 total lost since I started. How wonderful!

I am just tooooo exhausted to post a picture tonight. I have a bed to make and water to drink before I get to go to bed at an astounding 9 p.m. I am such a partier. I will post a picture later. I promise.

Stats for Tuesday, May 10, 2011:
This Week's Weight Loss: 3.8 pounds
Total Weight Loss: 6.2 pounds
Exercise: 20 minutes walking/jogging; 95-minute bike ride (yesterday)

Monday, May 9, 2011

The Battle of the Restaurants

This weekend, I ate out twice. And neither place was particularly conducive to healthy eating. I’m happy to report success on both fronts. The first: Eat N Park. They have some “healthy” options, but you never really know how those “healthy” meals are prepared. What kind of oil do they use? How much? Or do they use butter? If so, what kind? I think about this stuff now. While WW has a restaurant guide to help calculate points prior to ordering, I do not want to be tethered to a book every time I go out to eat. (Which is how I’m slowly convincing myself that an iPhone is necessary when my Verizon contract is up.) If I know I’m going, I can plan ahead, like I did with the Outback, but both Saturday outings were last-minute choices. Here’s how I succeeded:
I like, and have eaten semi-regularly since joining WW, the following things: bacon (usually turkey), eggs, and cheese. I especially enjoy them all together with mayo on an English muffin. Because of this, I know the points for each of those things. At Eat N Park, I scoured the menu and decided on the Skinny Scrambler based on the fact that I knew, albeit roughly, the points involved in making it (bacon, egg beaters, and cheese on six grain bread):
It came with a side of fruit, which is point-free. In addition to this, and you might want to sit down now, I DIDN’T EAT THE WHOLE SANDWICH! I left two bites on my place. Yes, TWO bites. And they were the best bites of the sandwich, because as any overweight person has done (at least I hope other people do this), they eat around their food and save the best bite(s) for last. So that’s what I did. Only when I got to the final bites, I realized that I was no longer hungry. So I put it down and covered it with my napkin. And it felt good. When I looked up the sandwich on Eat N Park’s website that night, I found that it was only 9 points! I had a 9 point lunch that filled me up. That’s some smart ordering, I think.

(It should also be said that I had a crazy stomach virus on Friday, which led to little eating and a fever throughout the night. By Saturday morning I felt better, but I’m sure my stomach wasn’t fully up to par during this lunch. If I were to return to Eat N Park today, I could probably eat that whole sandwich and then some.)

Later that night, I ate dinner at . . . Wendy’s. Oh no! But, again, I did well. I got a single cheeseburger with everything and a side salad with fat free French dressing. The burger turned out to be 14 points. Horrible for a single food serving, but not bad for a whole meal, which is what it was because the salad was free and the dressing was 1 point.
Sunday was also good for food. I kept my portion sizes in control and allowed myself two beers, which came out of my extra points stash. Even Clay commented on how well I stuck to single portions. It was hard, too, because he made such an amazing dinner. Homemade maple butter on warm, homemade rolls? Shutyourface. But I only had one roll and one teaspoon of maple butter.

No exercise due to the stomach bug, but I’m going biking tonight (first ride of the season for me). I’m finally breaking in my new bike shoes:

Now that my ass is finally feeling better from last week’s spinning class, I think I’m ready to put it to work again.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Parking in Ligonier Is Inexpensive

And guess what else is inexpensive? A FREE SPINNING CLASS!

It was free because I was Kristi's guest. So please don't flock to the Ligonier YMCA looking for a spinning handout. Because unless you're friends with Kristi, there are none.

About 1.5 minutes in my ass hurt. About 25 minutes in my feet hurt. By the time the class was over I couldn't feel my ass or my feet. Or rather I could feel them -- and it was painful. But boy howdy was it a good workout. I remember when I used to go before (about 3 times total) and I could never hack it very well. I'd just pretend to adjust my resistance because I felt like a fool for not being able to pedal at a more difficult setting. And standing up? Forget it. I sat and pedaled slowly. But tonight I kept up with the exception of one song where I couldn't stand (and that was because my feet hurt so bad, not because I didn't have the energy to do it). Woohoo!

And you'll never guess how many calories I burned. 1,349. How wonderful. Psyche. My HRM sucks ass. It said I burned 177 calories on the drive to Ligonier. If I burn that many calories sitting still then why am I exercising? I should be a skinny little thing by now. I posted a review to Timex's website and got a return postage from Amazon. That puppy's going back this weekend. Screw that. My friend Michael has a HRM that he enjoys. It even has a built in GPS:

It's a bit more expensive, but it looks like you get what you pay for, so I'm gonna go for it. It records your miles too, which I didn't know I wanted until I got an HRM that didn't have that feature. It also lets you upload your data to their website and keep track of it. AND it has interval settings so I can record multiple exercises separately. Notice how the face shows you your heart rate, time, calories, and distance. All at once! My goodness will the fun ever stop?!

After spinning we went to Subway. My whole meal was 17 points. I didn't think that was too bad for a sub with cheese and a bag of chips. And it was delicious. I noticed today, after I researched and emailed Kristi our respective Subway meal points based on what we usually eat, that I am obsessed with counting points. Also addictive: WW recipes. Ask me how many recipes I have emailed Hannah and myself. It's beyond a number.

Stats for Thursday, May 5, 2011:
Calories burned: websites say around 1,000 calories, but I think maybe around 700Exercise: 1 hour of spinning

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

This Thing, It's Not Working

I think my HRM is incorrectly measuring my calories. I went for a 30 minute walk/jog and it said I burned 485 calories. THEN, I continued to burn them at a very high rate after I was done and all through my weight lifting. In total, it said I burned 875 calories. That can't be right. Clay said he'll look at it for me. I work on computers all day long but these small gadgets make me dizzy.

I ran for 1 minute and 21 seconds tonight! Longest time yet. Hannah ran with me as well. She ran 45 seconds. We're pretty awesome now. It's fun to have someone along side you who is willing to be healthy with you. It feels good. Doesn't it, girls?

Tonight I also bought a digital food scale. I'm afraid I'm inaccurately measuring my foods, which can be very dangerous. I almost bought a measuring cup with a built-in scale. Like this:

But Hannah confirmed my suspicions. It's unnecessary. Even if it is sent directly from God. Especially when I can use THIS GUY for so much more:

That's not my exact scale. Mine's better.

Stats for Wednesday, May 3, 2011 (with possible bad HRM readings):
Total Weight Loss: 2.4 poundsExercise: 30 minutes walk/jog; 10 minutes weight lifting (core)

Calories: 485
Average Heart Rate: 124

Weightlifting (and after cardio calories):
Calories: 390 ?!?!
Average Heart Rate: 106

Total Calories Burned: 875 (maybe) (I have my doubts)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

My First Weigh-In

Oh man! I just made a huge post and my computer went nuts and I lost it all! Bummer.

I'm beat, so here's a recap: I lost 2.4 pounds this week! Not too bad considering I didn't burn as many calories since I've been running in small spurts and not doing my usual 500-calories-3x-a-week workout. Not to mention that I ate at the Outback on Saturday.

Speaking of which, Kristi and I ate out tonight. I did well. Got a grilled salmon salad, dressing and cheese on the side. Had a piece of bread and a few roasted potatoes. Kudos me. No running tonight. It's cold and rainy here in Southwestern Pennsylvania. Sherylyvette.com just made a post about how nice it is to run in the rain, but clearly I'm not ready to commit to that yet.

Oh! I made a goal for myself. On August 13th I am driving up to NYC to climb the 1,576 (or so) stairs of the Empire State Building. It's gonna be awful and awesome. How's that for alliteration?

Man, was my other post so much better. There were longer paragraphs where I discussed the problems one encounters when doing impromptu-dining-out. I think I even solved world hunger with these things:

God bless you, Fit & Active. Here's my picture for this week. I think I look bigger, but I am, in fact, 2.4 pounds lighter!

Stats for Tuesday, May 3, 2011:
WW Points: 37 out of 37
Pounds lost: 2.4
Exercise: fork-to-mouth lifts

Monday, May 2, 2011

Painting Pains

On Saturday, I volunteered for a community outreach project through the company for which I work. I spent the day painting. Now, I never really considered the physical pains of painting since I have not painted the interior of a house in any real capacity. I used the roller, bent to get paint on it, bent to apply it to the wall, used my arms to push it back and forth while applying pressure in order to cover up the previous color.

Fast forward to Monday, which is today, and I am in so much pain I can hardly walk. Yesterday I hobbled around and groaned and moaned when I had to climb stairs. Today I am doing the same. My ass muscles and the back of my legs are killing me. Killing me. I will never underestimate the physical labor involved in something so seemingly innocent as painting. I logged 180 minutes of painting (interior) into weightwatcher.com and I got 20 activity points for it! Seems like they knew it was hard work.

In other news, I ate at the Outback on Saturday night with no regrets. I've followed my daily point allowance all week and planned out my meal for the Outback prior to going. I knew I would be dipping into my extra 49 points, but that's what they're there for, right? Right. I've also accumulated 26 activity points this week, so I'm feeling pretty good about things. Weigh-in is tomorrow. I have no expectations as far as pounds lost, but I will be disappointed if I haven't lost any.

I'm working from home today and I managed to walk/jog for 20 minutes of my lunch break (once my muscles warmed up it wasn't so bad). I ran for one whole minute without stopping! That's the longest time yet! I also got my heart rate monitor in the mail (yay!) and wore that for the first time to record my stats. I still haven't figured that thing all out, but I got the basics and the rest I will research as I find the time.

Back to work for me!

Stats for Monday, May 2, 2011:
Exercise: 20 minutes walk/jog

Calories: 329
Time: 21.20
Time in Zone: 21.20
Average Heart Rate: 121