Pre OWiS #25 week in review!

18 06 2010

It’s that time again.

Time where I review my week in anticipation of tomorrow OWiS. This will be #25 since starting this journey. This week has seen some great accomplishments and yet tonight I feel out of sorts. I was supposed to meet with Superman today but he had to cancel at the last minute. With the both of us being on vacation we’ve not been able to get together for just under three weeks. I was really looking forward to today but understand his need to cancel. So tonight I’m feeling a little let down and trying not to get all bummed out and what not.

Lets get to the good stuff!

Saturday: I ran my second 5k and got a personal best time of 37:00. Here are some of the pictures from the race!

Sunday: I started breaking in my Vibrams with a short one mile run on the treadmill (fastest mile thus far). I also signed up for a 10k that was scheduled to happen July 17th but as with all new runners we have to remember to double-check our schedules and NOT just willy nilly sign up for races. I did, and then realized I have prior work engagements. CRAP! No worries though, that 10k will happen and it will happen soon!

Monday: Ran two miles in my vibrams!

Tuesday: Found out I have a bounce in my step and can unequivocally declare I am no longer a “functioning depressed” person. I also ran 2.8 miles in my vibrams.

Wednesday: Was the first of two cancellations by Superman this week. Big bummer on my side. I took it as a sign from the Universe to take a rest day and catch up on my sleep. 11 hours worth of zzz’s was totally worth it.

Thursday: Took my vibrams out and ran a personal 5k. From Saturday to Thursday I ran a total of 12 miles. Not bad for a fat chick that couldn’t run a block to save her life back in January. Oh I also got some swag and had a kick ass N(on) S(cale) V(ictory).

Today: I got the second cancellation from Superman. He left me a really nice message apologizing profusely and to not give up on him. Funny, I never would have thought working out with me meant that much to him. I feel sad that he has to keep canceling because I know he feels bad and I know it’s for medical reasons. This is the kind of guy I would go out and drink beers with, talk about fishing or go to monster trucks with so I won’t be going anywhere anytime soon.  Barring some horrific medical problem (I hope I didn’t just jinx him) I’m sure he’s not going anywhere either.

So there is my week in review. Ten-toed Charlie hasn’t really moved that much for me this week. I can’t say for sure whether there will be a loss or not. Up until this morning there wasn’t enough of a change to write home about.  Regardless of what TTC says I’m thrilled with the running mileage and even more thrilled to be wearing my sock monkey Christmas pajamas (which I will probably wear every day until I turn 50)

See you all in the morning!


The Great Kilted Run / Mush

24 05 2010

I’m not even sure where to begin talking about my experience yesterday. It was fantastic. It was emotional. It was hard. It was awesome. It was challenging. It was fun. It was inspiring. And it was damn near the toughest thing I’ve had to do in a long time (except for today’s session with Superman…keep reading).

When one is getting ready to run their very first race, I highly suggest preparing by donning a Transformer band-aid to remind yourself WWOPD!

Unfortunately this placement didn’t last very long since I was a nervous wreck and sweated it right my wrist on the way to Seattle. No worries though I’m a McGyver athlete so I rigged it onto my finger with a strip of 3M/Scotch lint roller (RAWR!).

I ran the race with my friend Elizabeth. This would be the first time I’ve actually run a long distance with someone else. Elizabeth would prove to be a great running partner. She’s getting ready to do an ENTIRE MARATHON (Rock and Roll San Diego) June 6th. Unbelievable!

Then I got my number.

I’m seriously thinking about having that number tattooed on me.


10 minutes to race time!!

Donning our skirts!

If you look closely I am dressed in about 3 layers of clothing. It was freaking cold out there that morning (about 48 degrees) and it didn’t look like it was going to warm up any time soon. With the wind coming off the water it felt like it was going to start snowing on us. I’m wearing my shirt from 1/2 marathon, a regular t-shirt and then my Great Kilted Run shirt. I look bulky. I think about what I looked like when I only had one shirt on six months ago and I’ll take this 3 shirt bulkiness anyday.

The race had about 400 participates. We took our place sort of in the middle and just as the race is about to begin, Elizabeth says to me “We’re going to walk the first minute”…


No wait, I want to run. I mean I knew we were going to do a walk/run interval but I thought it would start out with running. I was wrong and it was the best piece of advice she could give me. It did three things 1) it got us warmed up 2) it gave the faster runners a chance to pass us and most importantly 3) it gave me a chance to work through the nervousness of running my first race and forced me to slow down and not jump the gun and start too fast. The minute came and went and we were running. I was hoping for a 40:00 minute race but with our 1 minute walking intervals I was able to keep a pretty good pace. The last time I ran a 3.1 mile distance it took me 43:00 but now I was with Elizabeth and she helped to keep me paced.

All in all the race was a blast. I got passed by runners. I passed runners. I walked when it was time. I ran when it was time. The last mile was the hardest but I continued to talk myself through it and breath. I saw the finish line and I crossed it with a vengence. My time – 37:40. Two minutes and twenty seconds faster than goal and five minutes faster than my last personal 5k (I think the mile sprints every morning are helping too)

And then I almost threw up.

Elizabeth looks smashing. I look like I’m going to fall over lol.

Then I got back to my normal self.

Nice hair!

Then it was time for Bagpipes, beer, and cute dogs!

Not only did I survive my first race. I left there with a smile on my face.

And my hair back to normal!

My next race is slated for June 12th (Sound to Narrows). Now that the first one is out of the way I won’t be nearly as nervous (at least I hope). I’m shooting for another under 40:00 run but I’m not going to try and best my time of 37:40. The route is much different. Kilted run was very flat most of the way (with a few inclines). Word on the street is S2N has a much longer incline during a portion of the run. This Sunday I may run it just to get a idea of what to expect. I’ll go back to running my mile sprints and longer runs on the weekend until the 12th. I’ll reevaluate where I want to take this running business and push myself toward a 10k. I’m hoping to knock one out before the end of summer.

Who would imagine I’d become a runner?


So what’s a girl to do when she’s just run her first 5k? How about see Superman the next morning and damn near get my ass kicked? I’m not sure what I was thinking. Hell, I’m not sure what he was thinking. No lower body work but man oh man did I work my arms to the point of mush. Seriously. Mush. As I write this I think my forearms are having a meeting about whether or not they are going to cramp up on me at some point tonight. Don’t get me wrong, it was pure awesomeness as usual. I think it was just a little frustrating because I was still in la la land over my run and now I’m in the middle of the gym trying to do a bench press and it’s harder than I thought it would be. He let me work through my frustrations and didn’t once tell me to stop because he thought I couldn’t do it. It was me that thought I couldn’t do it and in the end he pushed me and proved me wrong.

He checked my measurements today and while I forgot to write them down I am smaller in all areas. Some places  (calves, arms) I’m one inch smaller. Other places (waist, thighs and shoulder) I’m up to three inches smaller. Not bad for a month’s worth of work.

Not bad at all.

24 hours later / a blog award

6 05 2010

Oh man I am feeling so much better. It’s amazing what 24 hours away from an emotionally draining situation can do for your psyche. I slept pretty damn good. I’ve easily consumed my gallon of water. My food intake has been healthy. I had a great session with Superman this morning. Hard to believe but it was better than Monday. He is pushing so hard and I am surviving. We talked a lot about how hard this is for me and how appreciative I am that he is a no-nonsense kind of trainer. I told him that I pushed that damn tractor tire by myself yesterday and as a reward he made me push the next biggest one.

Pure Awesomeness!

My mile run today was even faster than Monday: 12:02! I kept the speed at 6.0 mph for a little longer today. I can’t believe how fast I feel like I’m running. When I started running on the treadmill regularly 4.0 mph was a difficult pace to keep.  I’m fluctuating between 4.7 – 5.0 mph as a regular speed now for the mile runs. It’s not a speed I could do for longer durations but 12 minutes non-stop is alright in my book. Speaking of book, Rachel over at BodybyPizza has recommended  “Chi Running” by Danny Dreyer to help improve my posture and endurance. I’ve got it on hold at the library and can’t wait to pick it up!

17 days until my first 5k.


I’ve received my first blog award. I’m still so new at this I’m not even sure what all this means but I hear I have to follow the rules so here we go:

I actually received this blog award from two people almost simultaneously. A big thanks to Anthony over at  Sureshotrevolver (who by the way just ran a kick ass 5k) and Josie over at 35andshrinking (who by the way is sooooo close to Onederland!).

Here’s what I get to do:

  1. Get really excited that you got the coolest award EVER!
  2. Choose ONE of the following options of accepting the OMB award:
    • Get really drunk and blog for 15 minutes straight, or for as long as you can focus.
    • Write about your most embarrassing moment.
    • Write a “Soundtrack of your childhood” post.
    • Make your next blog a ‘vlog’/video blog. Basically, you’re talking to the camera about whatever.
    • Take a picture of yourself first thing in the morning, before you do anything else (hair, make up, etc)and post it.
  3. Pass the award on to at least three, but preferably more, awesome bloggers as yourself. Don’t forget to tell them.

I’m opting for the “Take a picture first thing in the morning”. Here I am in all my glory, cross eyed and all:

This was taken this morning at 5:04am. And yes I always look this good in the morning! I especially like my wolverine hairdo! At least I clean up nice. Now I need to pick some of my own peeps to get this lovely award so I’m going with Valerie @  Seattlerunnergirl, Steve @ NerdFitness, and Meegan @ Redstar5. IF for some reason these people are NOT on your blogroll, then you are missing out!

Friday Wrap Up / And ohhhh a yoga mat

30 04 2010

It’s that time of the week again folks. The time where I review the last seven days in preparation for OWiS #18. I do this to help me remember this journey isn’t about numbers but about becoming a healthier me. It’s also about taking control of my life and moving closer to what I was born to be; an athlete.

However, I am soooo close to 219 that this particular weigh-in is pretty much about the number. My calorie intake has been impressive (as per Superman).  My work outs have been intense (Minus Monday of course) and  I would like nothing more than to say goodbye to my 220’s  tomorrow morning. If not, it’s okay. I just keep my head down and keep moving. I am moving in the right direction and that my friends is the point of this journey.

Let’s get started

Saturday / Sunday – I declared these two days “NO GYM” days. Saturday I had some pent-up energy from sitting in a workshop all day so I ran up 10 flights of stairs. Sunday I decided to forego using a running program any longer. I felt constricted and needed to find the freedom to decide what worked for me. I took my run back to the streets and SHAZAM, I ran 5.5 miles!

Monday – I shared some personal information about my DISLIKE for change and my workout suffered because of it.

TuesdaySuperman proved himself to me once again. I learned a new mathematical equation (craptastic Monday = fantastic Tuesday) and I rocked it on the elliptical for an hour! I also pledged to run a real 5k (May 23rd) three weeks before my original 5k  (June 12) because Tony asked me too.

Wednesday – I officially became a Weekend Warrior. To celebrate I swam a mile. I went a little extra on this WWC and incorporated 25 other people to join me. William Wallace would be proud.

Thursday – I think I upped my game with Superman and for that I am tickled pink. Not only am I tickled pink, but I’m also painted blue for the upcoming WWC!

Friday – That leads us to today…I had a fantastic run!! I ran for 3.1 miles of which I only walked once for 45 seconds. This is a massive improvement over what I have been doing.  I ran 2.5 miles before walking…5 months ago I couldn’t run a block.  Then I swam a mile and I’ve been pooped ever since 🙂

Looking back over April, it’s been a very cool month. I ran almost 30 miles and swam the equivalent of 8.7 miles. I lost a total of 10.4 pounds (which is the second highest loss since starting this journey). I am looking forward to what May brings (besides the flowers) and I think the WWC is a great way to get started.

Tomorrow is another NO GYM day but I’m taking it one step further and declaring it a rest day. My husband and I have not had a day off together in over 4 weeks and I’m not about to waste this one sweating at the gym. I’ll weigh in, go back to bed and then enjoy the day with the man I love.


I won my very first giveaway!

My VBB Jeremy over at Stellar Path won a really cool yoga mat from a previous giveaway and liked it so much he contacted the company to see if they would be willing to sponsor another giveaway on his blog. They agreed and I am the lucky recipient. The company is called Aurorae Yoga and the reviews from Jeremy are stellar (pun intended)! I’m really excited. There is a Sunday Yoga class at my gym that I’ve been too intimidated to go too but this is just the ticket to get me into that class.

I went with the Solar color.

I’m going to have to start thinking of my own giveaway here. I’m thinking bubbalicious and some old rubber bands….Hmmm, I better keep thinking.

See you all in the morning!

When you think you can’t…you must.

21 04 2010

It’s Wednesday.

I”m sore.

Almost unbearably sore.

I blame Superman and his idea of fun.

(It was kind of fun)

I’m having to will myself to walk down stairs.

My thighs are just about ready to revolt against me in this journey.

Yesterday I got on the elliptical for 60 minutes and sweated my ass off. Literally speaking of course but I’m pretty sure my ass is smaller. I actually stopped myself in a full length mirror at the gym and was like “Oh hey wait a minute, is that my butt?”

(the answer was yes!)

Today should have been a run day for me. As soon as I woke up I knew it wouldn’t be. I almost didn’t go to the gym because of my frustration level. I don’t like being sore and not being able to follow through with what I’ve planned. I don’t do well with change even something as simple as changing a routine at the gym.

I decide to give it a try and head to the gym. As soon as I start my warm up I know it’s a no go. However, I’m already at the gym so I have some options. All is not lost. I decide to head to the elliptical because I’m so frustrated that I need something to help me work through it.

I get to the 30 minute mark.

I am angry.

Angry that I’m overweight. Angry that a session with Superman has made me this sore. Angry that this journey is some serious hard work not only physically but emotionally as well. Angry that 40 years of unfavorable learned behavior won’t just undo itself in 4 months. Angry that this is a lifetime decision and while it’s a decision that will probably save my life, I never should have been at this crossroad in the beginning. I’m angry at my mother, my father, my brothers. I’m angry with myself. I want to get off the elliptical, throw a towel over my head, and scream like a 3 year old. I want to push the person next to me and provoke them into yelling at me just so I would have a good reason to clock them in the face. I want to break the mirror in front of me because the person looking back at me is weak, fat and unforgiving.

I did get off the elliptical.

I didn’t cover my face and scream like 3 year old. I smiled at the person next to me. I pointed to the person in the mirror and wiggled my finger for her to follow me.

I jumped on that treadmill and ran for a mile.

All is right in my world today.

How’s your world?

Treadmill take 2 / my first challenge / then and now…

8 04 2010

The weather has been relentless in these parts. Downpours, 50 mph winds, and 40 degree temperatures do not make for good running conditions for a newbie like me.

This morning was no exception. I don’t want to put off running just because of the weather so today I took a deep breath and made a second date with the treadmill. As you recall from this post I don’t much like the treadmill or as what many of you have referred to as the dreadmill.

However, I do like to run so my adversity to the dreadmill was overpowered by my desire to run. On my way to the gym at 6am this morning I made some pretty important decisions about how this run was going to go:

  • I was going to keep the running portion above 4.0 mph. The last time I ran some of it around 3.7. Today that would not happen.
  • I would get past the 2.5 mile mark even if it was 2.52 I didn’t care.
  • I would not be grabbing any bars while running.
  • I would only look at my feet / face while running and if I did happen to look at the other parts of my body I would say something nice.

All in all, while it wasn’t the rainbows and butterflies I was hoping for, it went much better this time. The towel to hide the panel didn’t come off once so I never had to watch the time (except to slow the speed down for walking intervals and then back up to running speed). I managed to “zone off” quite a few times and forget that I was in the gym, in front of the mirror and in front of other people. I never once thought negatively about my body and in fact marveled in the fact that I looked like a real runner (as if I know what that means). I looked strong. I felt strong. I ran strong.

Not only did I run at 4.0 mph consistently, I upped it at each interval (8 minute run/1 minute walk). First interval = 4.0, second interval = 4.3, third interval 4.4, fourth interval = 4.6!!!. At this point I start to feel like I’m going to throw up but I hadn’t quite reached the 2.5 mile mark. I made some decisions before the run and I aimed to follow through.

I was tired.

My face was beet red.

I had pushed myself to the end.

The podrunner had instructed me to start my 5 minute cooldown.

I wanted to get passed the 2.5 mark.

I ran the cooldown.

I got to 2.81.

(the time 19.20 what was left out of 59.29)

Not only did I pass 2.5 but I ran for 40 minutes (with four 1 minute walking intervals. That’s pretty bad ass in my book!!! I took some more pictures for your viewing pleasure:

Post run hairdo

Post run ballcap.


I’ve signed up for my first physical challenge.  I’m currently doing a challenge put on by SeattleRunnerGirl but this 21 day challenge is about implementing a healthy habit whether it be physical or mental. My 21 day challenge is to pack my gym bag and food the night before. So far so good.

My first physical challenged is put on by Tony over at The Anti-Jared. He’s in cohorts with Jen over at Prior Fat Girl to get 500 people signed up to exercise for 60 minutes on April 20th. If they do, they will each donate $250 to the YMCA Activate America program. I had already signed up to do the challenge and then Tony added that he has 2 polar FT7 heart monitors he’s going to be giving away so now it’s even more appealing 🙂

I committed to 60 minutes on the elliptical. There’s still time to sign up (hint hint). Yes, the more that sign up the lower my chances of winning one of the heart monitors but I’d rather work out with you for an hour than win that monitor.


I took a picture back in December of 2009. I tried to recreate that picture today so I could get a side by side shot of what my face looks like three months later.

I even tried to recreate the emptiness the December picture shows. My December face looks so puffy and uncomfortable. Everything about my December picture just looks wrong. I look at it and it doesn’t even seem like it’s a picture of me.  I see some pretty big changes here. I then took another picture. One that wasn’t such a Debbie Downer…












That’s more like it!

The official graduation / Superman / and blah blah blah.

1 04 2010

It’s official.

I can now buy this beautiful shirt. I’ve worked nine long weeks to be able to say I can wear this shirt and know it to be true. I woke up early this morning with that “runner’s anticipation” in my stomach. That nervousness in the pit of your stomach that starts to wonder how far, how long and how in the world?

For a fleeting moment I prayed for another downpour. It was only fleeting. I wanted to do this run. I wanted to get outside before sun rise, pop in my earphones and let Robert Ullrey lull me into what would be my final run of the c25k program.

It was a little surreal, this run. Normally during my last run of the week, my mind wanders to what in store for me. For nine weeks I was focused on what coolrunnings thought I could do and would do. I constantly thought about whether or not I should repeat a week or just go and trust they knew what they were talking about.

I went with the trust factor.

They were right. Maybe not so much on the length portion. Today’s 30 minute run put me at about 2.25 miles, .85 miles short of 3.1. But they were right about the duration goal. If you had come to me nine weeks ago and said “Tara, you’re going to do this running program and in nine weeks you’re going to get up and run 2.25 miles without stopping“, I would have gaffawed at you. If I was drinking milk at the same time I would have accidentally spit it in your face at your unbelievable statement.

Not so unbelievable anymore.

This run, there was no thinking about what am I doing next week with coolrunnings. It was a little nerve wracking. Now what? You mean I have to do this on my own? Whose going to tell me when to run. Whose going to tell me when to stop?

Then I realized it was going to be me. I have the freedom now to figure out what exactly this running thing means to me. No more worrying about whether or not I’m going to be able to do a certain duration. No more freaking out about what’s coming up the next week, or the week after that.

Now I can just run.



Yesterday was my first meeting with Kent the trainer. It was mostly just talking, getting to know one another. Actually it was more him crunching numbers to get my BMI, RHR and any other TLA he could find.

Oh you don’t know what TLA means?

Three Letter Acronym

A little digression – There are companies out that have committees that sit around thinking of TLA, thinking it makes life easier than saying the words each time. Seriously!

Wonder what my Superman looks like?

Here’s his philosophy (thank goodness for copy and paste): “I have the training and experience to lead anyone to their fitness goals, whether you are training to improve your quality of life or to increase performance in a specific sport. Everyone should have a fitness assessment prior to an exercise program. The assessment will determine the optimal starting point for your program and is a great tool to measure the gains you have made during you program. When you are able to quantify the improvements you have made this will motivate you to continue to set and reach loftier goals. Your training should continually progress eventually landing you in the free weight area. Nothing burns calories like resistance training both during the work out and during the recovery days that follow. Additionally, it’s my goal to educate you on fitness, I will explain what and why we are doing certain exercises, the effects and why it is beneficial for the body. Your body will thank you each and every day by feeling better with a tremendous amount of energy.

And his experience:

  • 7 Years Personal Trainer
  • Cancer Survivor exercise development
  • 20 years military training
  • Wrote and monitored physical fitness programs for military units specifically to enhance combat effectiveness

Now go back and read that last bullet…


I’m hoping he’ll teach me some cool MacGyver move where I paralyze someone with a shoelace and a small towel.

He explained to me about not needing to do Cardio everyday. My running was probably going to be sufficient (less elliptical – even though I love it. I think I love it because of the t.v. that is attached to the machine – cause seriously who doesn’t love watching Law & Order while ellipticalling) (did I just make that word up – ellipticalling?) (am I using too many parenthesis?)

He explained to me about weight training to burn more calories. “Damaging” the muscles so that you burn more calories while healing. Ooooooooh. I have no idea what any of this means, but it makes sense.

He was impressed with my 3 month progress and pleased to hear my commitment. I was honest with him about my goals (70 pounds left to lose, working toward 5k, 10k, half marathon, marathon, triathlon, ironman, taking over the world). He understood my absolute ineptitude for what I’m about to embark on and while he wanted to get right down to business I told him I was a slow and steady kind of gal.

He showed me two weight bearing machines. Not the kind with counter weights but the kind you actually put free weights onto. Nothing major, just sit and have a look see. Push here, pull here…

Even without the weights it was harder than I thought.

I may be able to run for 30 minutes, swim 50 laps and go 45 minutes on the elliptical but I couldn’t go 2 minutes on those weight machines. This is going to be cool as all get out!

Our hour came and went. I made my first “real” appointment for next Tuesday at 6:30am. As we parted way, he patted me on the back and said “prepare to be sore”.

If only he knew how long I’ve been waiting to here that…


A few things to point out here before I close for the night and catch up on all the wonderful bloggers and CKers that keep me determined to fight this fight.

  • I’m about to begin another category: 229-220. I don’t know when I’m going to hit the 220’s but this morning when I got on the scale it said 229. Since I don’t do official weigh in until Saturday I am only taking this number at face value. But it sure is a pretty number.
  • I’m going to start recording my total mileage run starting today. I’m also going to count swim laps cause swimming is pretty hardcore. RAWR.
  • I’ve got some new guns starting to show themselves. Not guns, like colt 45 or 30 aught 6 (how’s that for gun speak? I blame Blake Shelton’s “Hillbilly Bone”), I’m talking about biceps…Woot Woot Baby!

That’s all there is for today folks. I’ll be taking a pass on breaking a sweat tomorrow. I’ve worked a seriously long day today and there is too much construction on the interstate to get me home at a decent hour (I started work this morning at 8. Will finish at 11p. Word on the street my normal 30 minute commute is taking about 90 minutes with road closures). Saturday is my first official “non c25k” run day. Sunday I’m ellipticalling/swimming laps and sending out positive vibes to my movemates!

Did I just make up another word: Movemates???

Will you be my movemate?