Friday, July 31, 2009

New job!

I got a bit of a surprise last night...a new job! I'll be grooming for a dressage trainer. I'll be working with horses all day, so I'm going to love it! Plus, it'll be great exercise so hopefully I'll lose a ton of weight. The hard part will be getting in running, too. I'll probably have to do that early in the morning before I go to work. I didn't today because I'm going dancing tonight instead. Off I go...wish me luck!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Today's random thoughts

1. As I was running and sweating and huffing and puffing today, I noticed fat doesn't bounce around anymore. Thirty pounds ago, when I ran, my fat would bounce around so much that it actually hurt. I still have fat, but it's not loose enough to bounce around. yay!

2. While I was running and sweating and huffing and puffing today,I wondered if I'm eventually going to wear out my little dog. I keep adding on to the circuit and doing a little more running and a little less walking, and I wondered if eventually it'll be too much for her. After all, she's a 10-pound dog...she's really little. But then, when I came into the house, red-faced, pouring sweat and just about wanting to die, she was happy and perky and bouncing around, wanting someone to take her harness off. I guess she's fine for now!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sleep is not overrated!

I have found that the amount of activity I get in during a day is directly related to the amount of sleep I got the night before! If I get very little sleep for whatever reason...puppy woke me up several times, couldn't fall asleep, woke up too early and couldn't get back to sleep...I feel it all day. Not only am I sleepy, but I can't find the motivation to get out of my chair to go do something. Then, when I finally do get out there and do something, I have less energy even to do what I do every day. I can't run as far, I don't feel up to riding, etc. By contrast, when I'm well rested, I can go all day.

Today, I woke up with a crick in my neck. I'd had plenty of sleep, but now I have this horrible sharp pain in my neck. Great! I decided to go for my run anyway, prepared to walk the whole way if I had to, but at least I'd still burn some calories. I did manage to run, but it hurt...and I got tired faster. I think I wasn't breathing as well because of the pain, plus it is warm out. I had to stop running several times just because of the pain...but if I walked for a minute and stretched, I could run a bit more. I did get through my whole circuit, albeit in a little more time than usual. I probably didn't run quite as much, but I did run some and worked up a good sweat. Better than nothing!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Interval training rocks!

I first learned about interval training when I did Body For Life a few years ago. It basically means that you alternate intensity throughout your cardio workout, with periods of relative ease interspersed between periods of wanting to just about die. While you might burn more calories if you maintained a high intensity the whole time, you cannot maintain your peak for very long. With interval training, you can actually reach higher levels of intensity for more combined time, because these high intensity bits come in bursts with a chance to recover in between. In fact, as you go through the workout, you can get MORE intense as your muscles warm up and your heart gets really pumping.

I only follow the Body For Life version when I'm on some kind of machine where I can keep track of the time and have an objective measurement of my intensity. Currently, I don't belong to a gym so that's not an option. Instead, I take a circuit around my neighborhood, alternating walking and running. Each running leg, I have landmarks to start and stop so I know I'm doing at least as much as the day before, if not more. Each leg, I run until I just about want to die. If I set out to just run the whole thing, I'd run maybe a quarter mile and then peter out and quit in a quarter mile. Instead, by taking brief walk breaks between running legs, I can recover and run again until I just about want to die. I even get faster with each successive leg, almost without thinking about it, and I actually sprint on my last one (with bit steps to practice for showing horses). I get much more running in this way, running probably a mile of my mile-and-a-half or so circuit.

When I started this program earlier this year, my circuit was about a mile and I didn't quite run half of it--I had two running legs. Now, I have five running legs. The walk breaks are getting shorter and the running legs are getting longer. Eventually, I hope to hook a couple of them together. Some day, I'll be able to run the whole thing, interspersing sprints with jogging. For now, I feel a little pathetic, but I'm much less pathetic than I was a few months ago! Just wait until I weigh 30 pounds less...

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Just keep moving....

They say the best way to deal with muscles that are sore from exercising is to keep moving. Personally, I think the best way to deal with them is to soak in a hot tub with a glass of wine, but what do I know?

This morning, as I walked out the door for my morning run I told my family I'd be longer than usual because I probably wouldn't run as much--plus I added about half a mile to my normal circuit. I'm sore from riding the other night and running this week, after over a week of doing neither.

So I started out on my route, thinking, "Ugh. This sucks. I don't want to do this. I'm sore. I want to go get in a hot tub with a glass of wine." However, it's not even 10AM yet, so wine is out of the question...oh, and I have to lose 10 pounds in the next month. Suck it up, sister.

I got to the point where my first running leg starts, gave myself a quick pep talk and struck off at a jog. It hurt. Every bounce introduced me to every muscle I neglected while I was out of town. I thought, "This sucks." However, I made it through that leg and rewarded myself with the usual walk break.

When I got to the next leg, I thought, "OK, if I can just get through this one, I get a good break before the next one. I can do it!" I struck off again, and this time things didn't hurt as much. I was still not the most comfortable I've ever been, but it was easier than the first leg. I made it all the way through and got to the next walk break.

By the third leg, which is a new one that takes me across a wide street, I knew I was going to get through my whole routine. I even pushed myself to run just a little bit further on that leg, and I completed the rest of my route. I was hot and sweaty and tired by the end...but I'm supposed to be! That means I'm burning all kinds of calories! Whee! 27 days to go to Region 3....

Monday, July 13, 2009

Back on track!

Just got back from my morning run. I didn't run while I was at the show, because the thought of running on top of a 12 or 14 hour work day was just too much! I know, excuses, excuses. Anyway, I must have gotten enough cardio in walking around and up and down stairs, because I didn't lose any fitness--in fact, my little trip was actually easier than before I left! I got through each running leg without dying or wanting a break, and I think I recovered just a little easier. I did a little sprint at the end...not full speed, but faster and bigger steps. In a little bit, I'm going to have some high fiber, high protein cereal for breakfast. yum!

Countdown to showing at Region 3 Sport Horse Championships: 32 days!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Home from region 3

I was at the Arabian Horse Association region 3 championships for the past week. Didn't show at this one, just groomed for a trainer friend of mine, Cari. Tomorrow morning, I'm back on track with running! A few days ago, I had to run halfway across the show grounds because someone forgot her number. Cari was surprised at how fast I got there, and I was pleased with how easy it was! OK, I was huffing and puffing a little, but I didn't totally die! :) Went grocery shopping tonight and planned a couple of healthy meals. 10 pounds by August 14...I can do it!