Wednesday, November 30, 2011

a night of failure that's behind me, and running in the chillllly

Last night was not a good night, where loving my body is concerned.  I've been really struggling with loneliness lately, and I just kind of felt buried by it last night.  So I found myself returning to old, bad patterns.  Too much food.  Too much TV.  (It is truly NOT a good thing that I have free cable provided where I live, but it's good, I guess, to have confirmed that before I move on to the next place, where I absolutely will not invite it back into my life.)  Too much moody funk.  I even felt the Lord reminding me as I was overindulging...prodding me to stop...but hey, when this girl is stubborn, she is STUBBORN.  Darn it.  I am so grateful that it's a new day and I can begin again, and a rough evening does not have to turn into a crappy series of choices without end.  

I checked the weather this morning as I was dressing for my said 22 DEGREES.  Hoo baby!  Coldest run yet!  I'm still working out the details on dealing with the cold.  I find it fascinating, how differently we each respond to the cold, and how different the solutions are.  For instance, my running tights.  When I was looking into ordering them, I read more than one runner's blog that said legs don't get that cold and you don't need to worry about layers there so much.  This is so very not true for me.  Heck, on Thanksgiving when I went on that 2 hour bike ride with my son, it was nearly 60 degrees outside, so I skipped the underlayer and just went in jeans.  I did not feel cold the entire fact, I had to unzip my jacket along the way, as I was overheating.  But when I got home, my thoroughly chilled thunder thighs kept me cold for something like 4 hours.  Even wrapped up in 4 blankets, I couldn't get warm.  Every time I'd pull my hands out of my very warm armpits and reach down to feel, there was sooooo much COLD radiating from my thighs, even though from the waist up I was radiating heat and more heat.  So for me...I gotta have layers on my legs.

Another friend who worked outdoors for years said that if she keeps her core warm, the rest of her is fine.  That is basically the opposite of the approach I used in all my years of winter horseback riding and later when I was a part time paper carrier...I always found that if I kept my head, face, hands, and feet basically didn't matter what I wore around my core.  I was warm.  And with my running, the layers I wear DO keep my core as warm as I think I can stand for it to be while running.  Still have cold face and cold hands (the wool socks are keeping my feet nicely warm, despite wearing mesh shoes...isn't that amazing?)  

So this morning I left my glasses at home, since the anti fog solutions I've tried to date have not worked.  I wrapped that silly looking face warmer around my head along with my headband and off I went.  The good news:  apparently I can run around outside without glasses, despite not being able to see much, and not hurt myself.  Also, I am able to breathe through the face warmer, though I hate the icky wetness of it (still dreaming of the terrorist's probably just a matter of WHEN for getting that thing).  My fingers got cold to the point of numb, even though I was wearing my skinny gloves.  Looks like it's time to bring out the mittens for layering.  Wee ha!  

If you're wondering, NO, I am not yet tempted to go inside for my run.  I'll keep playing with the layers and enjoying the quiet dark of the morning for as long as I can hold out. 

Sunday, November 27, 2011

thanksgiving - a mix of success and failure

I've been catching up on emails and such all afternoon between laundry loads and unpacking, having been internet-less for 4 solid days while I was out of town.  Hope you all had a very happy Thanksgiving!  

Looking back over the holiday weekend, I definitely had uhhh "mixed levels of success and failure," where loving my body is concerned.

Not Love:  I ate A LOT.  Enough to make myself just about unwilling to move.

Love:  I only did that once, at lunch on Thanksgiving.  And even that time, it wasn't half what it would have been a couple of years ago.  

Not Love:  I indulged in pie (both caramel and pumpkin, with a ton of cool whip on top) two nights in a row just before bedtime...not because I was hungry, but because it was there and yummy.

Love:  On the third night, I felt the pie temptation, and I didn't surrender to it.  I didn't feel GOOD about the not surrendering while I was doing it.  But in the morning, I sure was glad I had held the line.

Not Love:  I put insane amounts of butter in everything I cooked.  And ate bigger portions of leftovers than I ought to have, all weekend.

Love:  On Thanksgiving evening, I got on my bike and rode around my son's town with him for 2 hours, including quite a lot of uphill riding.  

Not Love:  On Saturday, while visiting a friend in prison, I ate pie with cool whip for breakfast (easy road food), as well as vending machine doritos and twix and soda for lunch (the only food available in the prison visiting area.)

Love:  On Friday morning, I rolled out of bed and ran my 2.2 miles, despite being in a strange place and off my routine.

Not Love:  Got home this afternoon with a major case of the funky blues,and responded to it by eating an entire of chow mein WITH noodles for supper (uggggg my stomach isn't made for that much food anymore!) after having already responded to it at breakfast by having...yes...pie with cool whip.

Love:  I got a lot of rest this weekend, and gave myself time for both fun reading and spiritual stuff as well as movies and generally fun hangouts with my son.  

Not Love:  Amidst my travels over the weekend, I sucked down an entire liter bottle of Diet Dr. Pepper.

Love:  I came home today and drank massive amounts of water.

Soooo....I'm no super star, by far.  But amidst the poor choices were some good ones.  And tomorrow is a new day, which always can equal:  a new beginning.

Bring it.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

the most important part of my day

I spent last evening shopping for Thanksgiving feast items and then baking pies.  Was up late, but didn't get packed for my 4-day weekend away from home.  I was tempted, as I snuggled down to sleep at almost 11 PM, to just spend this morning packing and skip my morning regimen.  But in the end, I decided that would be the most unloving thing I could possibly do at that hour of the morning, for both body and soul.

Here's the thing:  I NEED to start my day the way I do.  It sets a tone and a priority and hones my focus.  I realized this morning that it has gone from a "good habit," done because I "ought to," to a non-negotiable, done because it's by far what is best for me.  

Here's the morning routine on the weekdays that I run:

5-5:20 AM  Wake, brush teeth, brush hair, get dressed, stretch.
5:20-5:55 AM  Run
6-6:30 AM Shower, dry hair
6:30-7:30 AM Breakfast with my morning readings, write grat list, write blog if I have something to say
7:30-7:55 Get dressed, do makeup, fuss around the place a bit
7:55 Head down the hall to work

On non-running mornings, I hit "snooze" until 5:40ish and then get up and jump into the rest of the routine.  When I get a DVD player and a TV that will actually connect to that player, I hope, on my non-running mornings, to do a T-tap thing that a friend strongly recommends.  But that's gonna be awhile, as I can't make those electronics a priority until I've taken care of finding an apartment. 

If I had skipped all of that this morning to pack....well, I'd be packed.  And that would be nice.  But I'd be begun with a "gotta get stuff done" mentality instead of this great feeling that I've started the day out loving the body God gave me, and spending intentional time with Him.  I know from experience that I'd forget who is in charge and I'd wear myself out, trying to do His job.  

This is quite a bit more important than any dietary choices I could make at this point, as far as I am concerned.  As I press into loving God and taking care of myself, He'll continue growing me in better directions.  

I like that plan where I am less and He is more.  And I can always finish packing over my lunch break and/or right after work, anyway.

Monday, November 21, 2011

faster running, foggy glasses, and might've met a skunk this morning...

This morning it was time to step up one more notch, where my intervals of running are concerned.  So, after 5ish minutes of warmup, I did 3 rounds of:

1 minute slower jogging
9 minutes faster running

and then of course 5ish minutes of cooling down at a walk.  The good news:  despite the dread in me that screeches that I need to SLOW DOWN ALREADY on moving toward 30 uninterrupted minutes of faster running...this level is absolutely do-able for me.  Enjoyable, even.  I find it very, very strange that it can be enjoyable for me to run like this at 5 AM in the frozen air on a Monday, of all things!  It's very strange, and I am very grateful.

This past weekend I picked some stuff up to help with the issues of the dropping temps.  A friend had recommended a product called "Shift It" for my glasses, which have been fogging on parts of my run for weeks now.  I've been unable to find that.  I've searched on the internet and all I can find are dealers in the UK.  She said it is used by motorcyclists on their helmet shields for defogging.  So on Saturday I went to the local Harley dealer.  They didn't have that brand, but they DID have a big bottle of some other helmet shield defogger for about $5.  So I picked it up (it's worth noting that I had already also tried the place where I bought my would think an eyeglass place would carry such a thing...they had "heard such a thing exists," but they don't carry it, couldn't tell me where to look, and were worried that using it might damage the finish on my glasses...UNHELFPUL.) 

The other thing I picked up was a face warmer.  I had picked out an amazing balaclava (ski mask) online, but my son and others had assured me I'd look too terrifying in it, so I decided to try something decidedly less scary looking and also about 1/3 of the price (though at $24.99, it wasn't what I'd call CHEAP.)  I picked it up at Dick's sporting goods, in the most innocuous color I could find.  Here it is, as pictured 2 minutes ago on my couch: 

  Thus far, I am bummed at my results.  While I think the face warmer might work out nicely for biking, when I'm not breathing so hard...I didn't like it for my run.  It was wet from the exchange between my breath and the outside air within mere minutes (in fact it's still kind of soggy...was gross, putting it on to take this pic).  Also, it was too much of a test for my defogger.  Less than 2 minutes into my run, I had to fold down the part that goes over my nose, cuz the wall of fog on my glasses was just to much to see through.  That worked for about 10 minutes, and then I was running in fog for the rest of the run.  

I'm pondering other solutions.  I could try running without my glasses.  I don't see well AT ALL without them; while I could tell the difference between a car, a person, and a deer without 'em, I probably couldn't differentiate a skunk from a raccoon (an important issue that I can easily think of, as this morning I startled something in the woods next to me and my glasses were too foggy to see what it was...I hustled and hoped I wasn't getting sprayed by a skunk, and it seems I came out fine this time).  

On the "bike winter" lists and on some running forums, people talk about using snowboarding goggles for their winter expeditions.  I don't know if I could get a pair of those that would go over my glasses or not.  and then...would it work, or just be good money thrown after bad?

And what about my high-tech "terrorist mask" that I wanted in the first place?  It has a plastic air exchange thing that seems like it would avoid the moisture element.  It has special padding around the nose to avoid fogging the glasses.  See, I'm wondering if I just need to buck up and buy the thing and not worry who I terrify...I'll be bummed if I spend $50 or $75 in "other solutions" that don't work, and then STILL have to spend $75 for the mask...

And don't even MENTION moving indoors...I'm not ready for that.  I love my run in the morning, out in the fresh air and quiet.  I am absolutely not interested in moving inside.  That's not the answer!  

I dunno. 

Friday, November 18, 2011

tights, ice, hat, scale...say it 3 times fast...

I tried out my new Under Armor running tights this morning under my running pants.  I LOVE EM!  They are very comfy, very warm.  They feel GREAT.  And my legs no longer great frozen slabs of cellulite at the end of my run, which is a definite positive. 

There is a water leak in the middle of the road on the hill I climb every morning on the way to my run.  Water has been bubbling up out of it steadily for months, with no sign that the City of Rock Island has any intention of addressing it.  Yesterday at work I made an inquiry on that front, since our seniors drive up and down that hill and ice on it would be NOT GOOD NEWS, to put it mildly.  The City, it seems, is deciding whether it's their problem or a homeowner's responsibility.  Uhh...water bubbling out of the exact middle of the street?!  Seems like they're complicating a simple thing to me, but maybe there's something I don't understand.  In the end, the part that applies to me is:  this morning it was under freezing temps, and that meant I had to cross snot-slippery ice on my way up (I did it well) and on my way back down (I almost fell).  It looks to me like there is a way around it all if I cut across the "back yard" of the property here.  Guess I'll try that, unless and until the City decides to take care of its business.

I'm working on solutions for not freezing my face while I run.  I thought I found the perfect solution yesterday, but apparently my son and many others think I would look like a terrorist or burglar or something when I wear it.  Uhh.  I don't need negative police interactions at 5 AM.  So I guess I'll keep working on that....but I gotta work it out SOON.  The wind was brisk this morning and my cheeks are still burning from it!

I keep forgetting to mention:  at my lovely horrible doctor visit on Tuesday, I got weighed, of course.  I was 3 pounds down from my previous appointment.  See, this is why I don't trust numbers:  while I've been diligently exercising, my eating is NOT quite as good as it was.  I am noticing my portion sizes have been getting bigger again.  I shouldn't be down 3 pounds....that number should be UP by my calculations.  All the more reason I'm NOT going to start weighing regularly anytime soon. 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

new tights are here, and other winter wear thoughts

I've spent some time in the last couple of weeks reading up on what to wear for running and for biking in the winter.  I've been happy to learn that my merino wool socks are high on the recommended list. both for biking and for running..I figured I'd need something all high-techy.  Also on the list for biking are the silk long underwear I already have.  A big element is layers, layers, layers and I've got most of the pieces for that.  I was lacking one major thing:  a good set of running tights.  I ordered a pair from Under Armor last week and they arrived yesterday.  These are the ones rated for the coldest weather...they're quite heavy, for light-weight clothing.  I'm looking forward to trying them out.

Now, I realize that many runners wear these kinds of tights as outerwear.  I won't be doing that...not at this size.  While it's quite black outside when I run in the morning, the prospect of someone's headlights panning across gray tights stretched across my great abundance of cellulite...well, let's just say it makes me shudder.  It's called UNDER Armor.  That's where I'll be wearing it.  These are XXL.  Maybe if I get down to L, I'll consider them as outerwear.  But I do believe the part of the world that must view me at 5 AM would thank me if they knew the choice I am making.    

I don't know if I'll have to buy winter shoes for running.  My Mizunos are very mesh.  What I read says I need protection from the moisture in winter.  So maybe I'll have more high-priced shoe shopping to do.  Ergh.

I think all else I've got left to buy for my winter active wear is a good hat.  My head is so big that I'll probably still need my extra-wide ear warmer that I wear now, even with the hat.  But keeping the lid on promises to hold my warmth, and as the temperature drops, I'm feeling quite serious on that topic.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

doctor visit, thoughts on labs, and dreaming of a wii

Today I had my *ahem* dreaded female doctor visit, which my doctor had promptly recommended at my last visit when he saw I was a bit overdue.  Oh joy.  That's whatever.  It's over, hallelujah.  The nurse frowned when she took my blood pressure and asked if it usually runs high.  I knew even before she frowned that it was going to be bad...while it does NOT run high, once in awhile under stress I can literally feel that it's up.  And I had started freaking out about this appointment the minute I got in the car - I can be tough about some things, but this particular appointment brings out the wimp in me, thanks to some old bad baggage from an insensitive doctor from over 30 years ago (never doubt you can have a lasting influence on another...just try not to have the kind that doctor has had on me!)  So I just frowned at the poor nurse and told her, "No, it's usually fine...I just hate these kinds of appointments that much."  I'm sure my blood pressure will raise again next week...after all...that's when my lovely mammogram is scheduled.  (Fun and more fun!)

While I was there I picked up my prescription for my weekly Vitamin D.  A friend confided that she can never keep the commitment of a weekly dose of anything...too hard to remember.  That's why I love my little "old lady daily vitamin keeper."  Using it, I am about 1000% more faithful to my supplements than I am without it.  I read up on Vitamin D today - very important stuff!  The doctor also wants me to take a calcium supplement with Vitamin D in it daily, as well as a multivitamin.  While I was picking those up, I made sure the multivitamin has magnesium and zinc in it, since those do affect energy levels and even separate from the spiritual stronghold I just escaped, I have been a low-energy person my whole life.

Speaking of which:  anemia.  That's something I've had my whole life.  It wreaked havoc on my ability to donate blood, since I could so rarely pass the spin test.  When I was pregnant with my daughter, my iron was so low that the doctor had me taking the pregnancy vitamins PLUS an iron pill, and my numbers STILL shot low.  Tonight I have spent some more time studying my lab results more closely.  While the doctor only commented on my Vitamin D issue, there are 4 other numbers that are outside normal ranges on those sheets.  I went on a google spree, and quickly figured out that ALL 4 OF THEM are related to anemia.  That frustrates me, because I have this great diet and I take iron supplements and I take Vitamin C to help my body process the iron.  But anyway knowing that issue is there will help me be even more intentional in my diet.  I probably need to go back to the prescription my childhood doctor gave my mom for me:  liver once a week.  I love liver, so it wouldn't be hard.  I should probably do that. 

The good news is that all the diabetes-related numbers on my sheets are fantastic.  And my thyroid numbers are good.  And my cholesterol numbers are wonderful. HDL ("good" cholesterol) is right on the borderline between "good" and "maybe you should raise that a bit."  Which puzzles me, cuz again, I have a great diet and I cook with extra virgin olive oil and I take fish oil (4 pills of it a day, even!) and all.  And I already am doing the non-diet suggested things to address it:  exercise and losing weight.

Meanwhile in other news, tonight was NOT kickboxing (that's on Thursday nights) - it was supposed to be Zumba.  I don't think I'm going back to the Zumba class I was taking, for reasons already explained on this blog.  I'd love to find a Zumba class with a slightly different focus and a teacher who will help me learn the fast parts without feeling like I'm going to damage my knees...or I've heard the Wii has a Zumba element...I am SOOO looking forward to the day I can get a Wii. 

Pretty sure I'm rambling on and on.  Better get to sleep so I can run in the morning.

D is for deficiency, but E is for energy

I keep forgetting to mention that my labs came back over the weekend.  The doctor's note that came with them said I have a Vitamin D deficiency and need 50,000 units once per week.  I'll follow through on that, because chemistry is chemistry, but the fact is the exhaustion that so hindered me for more than a month was driven out by prayer and was long gone a week before the lab results got here.  In fact, I haven't yet gotten the Vitamin D.  So I'm on something like day 10 or 11 of normal energy, with not a single thing medically changed.  Sometimes the answer really is a spiritual one!

My abs are still complaining about that bike ride.  I'm taking an Aleve every 12 hours for pain relief, cuz when I don't, my abs ache to the point of distracting me from life.  I guess an entire day of unintentional "ab workout" (shifting my pelvis on a bike seat) really has lasting effect!  My arms and neck are still griping a bit too.  If this sounds like ME complaining, please let me's more a victory chant.  Like....whatta workout!!! 

Tonight I am back to kickboxing.  I'm torn between looking forward to the fun of the class, and wanting to hibernate after work (cuz it's already dark and chilly outside by then).  Lack of momentum really is an enemy that just keeps dragging it's damned heels, eh? 

Monday, November 14, 2011

cranking up the running another notch, and enjoying fressssssh milk!

This morning it was time to advance my running routine again.  After 5ish minutes of warmup walking, I did 3 rounds of:

2 minutes slower jogging
8 minutes faster running

Followed by 5ish minutes of cool down walking.  Man...that first 2 minutes of jogging I was going sooooo slow, just dreading the very prospect of 8 minutes faster!  But it was absolutely do-able and didn't even make me feel like I was gonna puke.  AWESOME.  

I spent yesterday recovering from the great bike ride.  I didn't want to get out of bed AT ALL.  While my legs (and even my knees!) were basically fine, everything else hurt.  Arms, back, chest, neck.  My abs feel like I did 1000 sit-ups, probably because I was constantly shifting my pelvis, trying to alleviate bike seat pain.  And ooooooohhhhh bike seat pain recovery...golly...I'll spare ya the details, 'k?   Let's just say thank God for Aleve for pain relief, and coffee for enough stimulation to keep me up and mobile through church, and no need to sit a-straddle of anything at all anytime soon.  I'm still was totally worth it.  Even as my arms and neck and abs continue to complain a bit this morning.  Totally.  Worth it.  

Yesterday I got my first of what will be a biweekly delivery of one gallon of raw, farm-fresh milk from pastured, grass/organic fed cows.  OH MAN.  I remembered from when I was a kid and the neighbor provided us milk from their cow that it is soooo good.  Beautiful layer of yellow cream on top, most of which I carefully skimmed off into a separate container.  It was good in my tea this morning and will be even better on fruit tonight.  Can't go overboard on it cuz that's plenty of fat...but the important thing here is it's not full of chemicals/steroids/etc.  Good clean food.  YUMMY good clean food.  Color me happy.  The milk was awfully good on my oatmeal, too.

Happy Monday, all. 

Saturday, November 12, 2011


Today I achieved a goal:  broke the 50-mile barrier on Wilma!

I had picked up a speedometer for her, hoping it would help me identify the correct turnaround spot.  When I bought it last night, the guy in the bike shop told me they would install it for me if I couldn't.  At first I thought maybe I could do it...but...DUDE...I couldn't even open its battery compartment.  So this morning I rode back over to the bike shop, where the owner took the time to install it for me.  We chatted while he worked; he told me where the turnaround spot is for a 50 mile ride.

Turned out to be a good thing he did.  I wondered as I rode down the bike path...the speedometer showed I was cruising at an average between 25 and 30 MPH, with occasional peaks at 44 MPH when going downtown.  REALLY?  That didn't seem right.  

Further down the road, it seemed apparent that too many miles were piling on as I rode.  So I made a decision not to base the turnaround on what it said.  Good thing:  when I got to the actual turnaround, it said I already had done 45 miles (which, added to the 4 miles unrecorded before the bike shop, meant in theory I had ridden 50 miles ONE WAY).  Holy cow.

Made several stops along the way to alleviate bike seat pain.  Lunch was at the gazebo just beyond Rapids City.  Beautiful view, yummy lunch.  (Sorry, my picture doesn't show the river view that I enjoyed!)

Apple quarters, cashew butter, farm fresh egg, and the even the cookies are decently good...dark chocolate, made from organic ingredients, 2 g fiber/serving.  Rode on through Cordova and a little over a mile further before turning around (at that point, the 20 MPH winds that had been predicted arrived just on be HEADWINDS...oyyyy!)  Had another apple with the rest of the cashew butter a little further down the road, on the way home in Port Byron.  

Stopped by the bike shop when I rolled back into Moline.  Here was the problem:  the speedometer measures speed by how many times a little magnet on one of the spokes goes by.  I had on my front wheel the new magnet that came with the speedometer AND the old magnet from the previous system (which was lost before I got Wilma). was recording as basically twice as fast/twice as many miles as I was going  LOL 

Now I'm all showered and changed, doing my laundry, not sleepy at all but feel like I gave every bit I had to give, muscle-wise, in that ride.  Where is my full-body massage?!  Oh well, Aleve will have to be sufficient. 


Friday, November 11, 2011

the mercury drops and the layers pile on

I really like running outside early in the morning.  It's dark.  It's quiet.  There are fewer reasons for me to have to acknowledge that others have the right to live, move, and make noise on my planet.  I really NEED my planet to basically be all mine for the first hour...or two...or three...of my day.  It takes me awhile to wake up enough to allow that others should be able to live and intrude upon my quiet zone.  What can I say...I'm a selfish jerk in the morning, okay?

So I'm really hoping I can transition into being a winter outdoor runner (and for that matter, cyclist as well).  I don't want to give it up for the season.  And I REALLY don't want to move indoors, where people will turn on lights and speak and turn on television programs that make me want to blow up planet earth (can you say Fox News?!)  It's not nice to want to blow up planet earth before 7 AM, after all.  

As the year advances, I've started checking the weather while I'm getting ready to run.  This morning it said 29 degrees.  What I know, from our Fantastic Prayer Walking Project a few years ago, in which we walked in all the best and worst weather:  29 degrees is a nice temperature to be out moving around...provided that you're dressed right.  So I piled on layers.  First my high-priced high tech sweat wicking underarmour shirt (long-sleeved).  Then the workout shirt a friend gave me...some kind of spandexy thing made in Vietnam (also long-sleeved).  Then a mesh-lined workout jacket I picked up at Goodwill last weekend for $4.  My regular running pants (gonna look into something warmer to wear under them right away...if you don't have "extra padding" on your butt and legs, you might not realize how much that layer of fat grabs the cold and holds onto it for hours and hours after exposure to it) and warm socks instead of the mesh-topped ones I've been wearing for running since I started this past spring.  Gloves...those little 99 cent wonders.  And of course my reflective vest and that extra-wide headband that keeps my ears warm and has little reflective stuffies on the back.  That's a lotta clothes!  Happily, it was enough for the day.  I have a big heavy hoodie I can throw on over it all, for the next step in warmth when the mercury drops.  Let's see how soon I need it.

I also peeked at tomorrow's weather.  Looks like I'll probably get my first-ever 50 mile bike ride in tomorrow.  WOO HOO!!!

And if you're wondering whether that spiritual answer to my physical exhaustion worked is day 8 of it looking like has!  Color me happy.  Speaking of which...

Happy Friday, all. 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

maybe zumba's not for me?

I made it back to Zumba class tonight, after missing last week due to a combination of exhaustion and an appointment I needed not to miss.  Though I had wanted to take a Zumba class for...I dunno...a year...maybe two?...and just started 2 weeks ago, at this point I'm very undecided about how long I'll stick with it.

It's not my ineptness that's discouraging me.  I knew I'd start out with no rhythm, no moves, no skills.  I knew I'd be the slow one in the back of the room, getting most of it wrong, and that idea hasn't bothered me overly much.  After all, once upon a time, I was a pom-pom girl, and I know all about starting out awful and becoming wicked awesome after consistent practice.  At 45, I don't need the class to think I'm awesome on day 1, or even on day 101.  Heck, I don't even care (though I do notice) that I'm the 2nd largest member of the class.  Gotta start somewhere.  This is not some need to be a rock star or go home.  

Part of it is the issue of the way it makes me feel like I'm Amish or something, which I'm only discussing over there and not here, cuz I'm a freaky blogger with a compartmentalized writing approach and I'm not above trying to cross-link you from one to the other.

The other part of it, quite simply:  I'm concerned that I might do damage to myself that could interfere with my running.  

Here's the thing:  in 2011 I have discovered that plain, simple, old-fashioned running is an exercise that conditions me shockingly faster and better than all the things I've tried in the past.  It works better for me than an elliptical machine or a treadmill, better than a cardio class, better than walking.  So despite that fact that most wouldn't consider me, at 2.2 miles per 30 minutes, anything like a REAL runner, it works for me and I don't want to do anything that might endanger my ability to run.

The Zumba class moves are lightning fast, and I'm a slow learner when it comes to the physical.  So the class is hustling along to the next higher, faster, harder level as I struggle to figure out the beginner steps.  Result:  3 times tonight in class I stepped down or turned in a way that made my right knee scream for mercy. 

Every time I felt a little panicked.  If this messes up my run, I am gonna be so mad!  And every time I panicked, I asked myself if this class is where I belong right now.

So I'll be pondering and praying about it this week, and we'll see if I try it again next Tuesday night.  Ehhh.  I just don't know. 

Monday, November 7, 2011

a ray of hope, and back to running

The good news is that after hearing in my study and prayer late last week that this exhaustion problem may have a spiritual root, I'm experiencing marked improvement.  That improvement started directly AFTER I stopped resisting the idea that it might be a spiritual problem.  I took some steps of faith this weekend toward that end; I'm happy to say that I had a 100% NORMAL weekend, where my energy reserves are concerned.  I'm feeling cautiously optimistic.  I'm not really in the mood to spell it all out here on the blog, as experience has shown me that few things divide and irritate people as much as the subject of supernatural/spiritual healing of a physical issue.  So I'll say simply that I'm handling it with prayer, and watching and waiting to see what God does next.  End of story, for now.

This morning I made it out for my run, which was a huge relief after having taken another week off from running in an effort to combat that debilitating exhaustion.  It felt SO GOOD to be out there.  I am once again repeating the 3/7 intervals, which my body was happy to do this morning.  At this rate I am supposing next week I'll move on to the next harder intervals (will have to look them up to see what they are.)  

Feeling good on a Monday morning.  I hope you are too.

Friday, November 4, 2011

report after dr. visit, and the scale is a meanie as usual

Guess I left y'all with kind of a cliff-hanger, what with me saying I was going to the doctor and then not coming back on to say what the doctor said.  Today's entry won't be much more satisfying than no news at all, but here it is:

The doctor didn't have any instant answers (which is how I knew this would have to go.)  I really like him - he listened very intently to everything I said, didn't hurry me, didn't shush me when I interrupted to add more information and further questions.  He took me very seriously, which I appreciated (if you've ever felt "dismissed" by a doctor, you understand perhaps how much I appreciate this guy.) 

Because heart health issues run rampant in my family, he did an EKG immediately.  Good news:  my heart's in good shape (which I guessed was the case)!  He also checked me over thoroughly, and had my blood drawn for a full array of screenings.  Next week I have appointments for a mammogram and a pelvic (oh joy).  We discussed a few possibilities, but he's not putting answers out there until he has test results in hand (which I appreciate).  If all the tests listed here don't bring conclusive results, we may follow up with a sleep study (I don't anticipate that happening...I'm 99% sure I don't have sleep apnea issues...but who knows.) 

Meanwhile I've come across an insight to a spiritual approach on this one, which I won't go into great detail on here.  Basically a prayer approach.  Gonna work on that this weekend. 

Told ya it wouldn't be a satisfying report.

In other news, I got weighed at the doctor's office...which, as you know, is something I've avoided like the plague because I KNOW how my mind works on that topic.  I don't want this "letting God teach me to love my body" project slide off into a diet and weight obsession.  But now I have a number.  

I have lost 50 pounds in the last year or year and a half.  Sounds like an encouraging number, eh?  Only I thought I had probably lost 70.  I weigh 225.  I thought I probably was in the 200 range.  (I HATE reporting numbers, but after all, this is the naked blog...)  So, as predicted, stepping on the scale was a frustrating and disappointing experience.  Bleh.  Ever since I weighed, I have had to go back to continually reminding myself and praying through getting my focus back where it goes:  loving my body, not counting stupid numbers.  

Gonna keep pushing and praying, and trusting that God will bring me back to that much better focus.