Saturday, September 27, 2008

Early Morning Ramblings

It's 6:38am and I've been up and awake now for about two and a half hours, about an hour and a half until I need to be at the gym for trainer-Steve... My sleeping lately has been so messed up, as if being sick isn't bad enough. It then takes me about a week to get back into any semblance of a "normal" sleep routine unless of course a bout of insomnia hits (which it does about 90% of the time for me after being sick).

There really is no update to provide since last Saturday's 5k, but it's early, I'm awake and therefore I shall talk...

I woke up Sunday morning with a sore throat and it has all pretty much gone downhill since then. Pretty much just laid around on Sunday, watched what I believe was supposed to be an NFL game between the Browns and the Ravens -- I don't need to go into that, I'm pretty sure we've ALL got the same or at least similar opinions there... I'm seriously considering a boycott on football this year (ok, ok, not really serious about that, I don't really think I could do it anyhow, I mean IT'S FOOTBALL, the only reason I look forward to summer being almost over every year, I mean really who could survive a true boycott of such an awesome spectator sport! Go Browns. Go Bucks. Go Irish).

Monday and Tuesday I stayed home from work, medicated myself and slept.

Ventured to work on Wednesday, but couldn't make it through the whole day. Went home, medicated myself and slept more.

Thursday I felt much better, no really I felt great (as long as you didn't listen to me talk or pay any attention to the coughing) and even headed to the gym, but trainer-Steve immediately put a kibosh on those plans and sent me home (I really didn't get why...). I headed to work, honestly believing I was better, to what turned out to be an 11-hour work day! -- The last 4 hours spent in meetings where the major topic of conversation revolved around our impending merger, er, um I mean "c-o-n-s-o-l-i-d-a-t-i-o-n" yes, yes because THAT sounds so much better and makes this whole friggin' process easy and carefree, just one big happy family, it's not "them-against-us" it's improving upon two separate and distinct already establish processes, it's for the good of the general public, it's... oh, um, ok...I digress, um, as I was saying -- it turned out to be an 11-hour work day.

Needless to say, Friday morning I woke up with a sore throat, slight fever and coughing. It was a short workday so I ventured in, but was glad when 2:00pm rolled around and I could head back home to my sofa and blanket where I caught up on some missed TV action. Was supposed to go out with a girlfriend, but just wasn't really up to the bar-scene, so I opted out there. Completely forgot about the debate being on and instead watched E.T. Classic movie, and yes I still cried at the end...I'm such a sucker! But from what I've heard, I probably made the better choice in watching a classic.

So, that brings us around to this morning. I am feeling ok, but am leery about it. There's been minimal coughing, throat feels good, temp where it should be, sinuses a little stuffy but nothing really any worst than any other given day. I guess we'll see how the day progresses. Mom and I don't have a lot on the agenda for today, pretty much just hanging out locally, doing a little shopping, and grabbing a bite to eat somewhere (I'd like something a little different, but not sure what...) Talked with trainer-Steve already this morning (yes, already, at like 5:20am, ugh-morning people, i just don't get 'em!) and he's given me a green light to come on in today for a session. Since it's been a whole week since I've had a workout he says we'll ease into it today, but then I'm scheduled for Monday-Wednesday-Friday next week and he's already telling me that we're going to hit it hard. Which I am actually looking forward to. Ever since the back issues started and then going through the treatments, we've been unable to get in any good, hard, kick-your-butt sessions and then to have three in a week (oh I foresee lots of lunges and plank positions in my future) and then a 5k next Saturday morning....yeah-baby, that's what I'm talking about, let's bring it on!!

So of the many topics that trainer-Steve and I have been having is my nutrition. I've been keeping a diary of what I'm eating and when for several months now and I've improved my eating habits dramatically, with the minor exceptions of cook outs (but I've gotten better as the summer progressed) and being sick (I crave salt and vinegar chips and milkshakes when I have a cold... I know, but cravings rarely make sense, and well shouldn't you pamper yourself when you're sick?). The biggest issue I am having is my protein intake, so I guess my next step is to maybe plan out my meals more than I do now. Typically I go shopping, buy miscellaneous groceries and then I like to create whatever when it comes time to make dinner. There isn't always a lot of rhyme or reason to what I buy as far as for a specific dinner. I think where I'm lacking most though is in the lunchtime arena (I still tend to skip lunches sometimes). So since I'm a list-freak anyhow, I guess I need to start pre-planning my meals and start trying to stick with that.

Ok, time to finish the tea grab some p.b. toast and head out to the gym.

Have a great week-end y'all and chat soon! Later-bye.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Run For The Cheetah and Mums

I've been wanting to get in a 5k this month, so last night I decided that I would get up this morning to head to the Cleveland Zoo for the first Run For The Cheetah 5k run and walk. Now, I haven't been to the zoo in probably about 6 or 7 years, but I've been there enough times to remember that there's a fairly good sized hill that I would have to contend with and hills are not my friends! It appears as though running hills really agitates my back issues...but for some reason I just really wanted to do this race. -- I guess it's my way of trying to convince myself that 1) yes I am a runner and 2) my back is fine.

Well of course, when I woke up this morning my back was not feeling great...see, this just goes to show what the sub-conscious can do to you! I talked with both trainer-Steve and G prior to the race and they both basically gave me the same advice, "put the thought of pain in your back OUT of your mind", and to be honest, once I started running my focus changed to finding my place in the pack and who I might try to pace myself with and my back never became an issue during the race -- but I digress... So I got up this morning, talked with trainer-Steve and G and waited around for my Mom to show up, which she did right on time at about 7:30am. My Mom really enjoys coming to the races and it also gets her out of the house a little more and it's really convenient since she gets to hang on to all my crap I bring and all the stuff ya get at races - so, if you ever see me at a race fell free to drop your stuff off with my Mom, she really won't mind, lol.

We got to the zoo at about 7:50am and I got myself registered and we walked around a little, went to the Lion exhibit since they are my favorites (they weren't up yet), and milled around waiting for it to be time to start the race. Finally, time to line up and listen to the few instructions they had to announce. Now, I hadn't really thought much about the course other than I knew I'd have to face a hill. Well what's one of the first things I hear " you'll be running the course twice..." me, to myself: "HUH?, sh*t, that means the hill Twice! Aggghh. Ok, well I'm here, I've paid, I guess I'm going up that hill twice." With that the race was off... Now again it has been a while since I was at the zoo and as we rounded a corner I noticed the incline ahead and thought "ok, there it is, let's go"...and I ran it..."woo hoo, hmmm, that wasn't soo bad, maybe my memory of the hill was off?"...around another corner, and another... "oh crap, HERE's the hill I remembered, hmmm, I don't remember there being two hills, ok, I ran that first one, I can do this one, ok, there's a turn ahead and it'll level off...omg, it's not leveling off, it's not going downhill, it's going UP." Needless to say, I did not run the entire second hill, figured I'd save myself since I knew I'd be coming this way

I was finishing the first lap I hear lots of cheering and yelling and look around and see 2nd place overall runner is finishing the race...nothing like a nice gently reminder of how slow I am, LOL. Made it through the 2nd round of the course and ended up walking both hills (dang it). Had allot of kick left in me by the end of the race and I know it probably looks silly to those who have completed the race many minutes before me to have someone actually try to kick it in at the end of the race, but even though I am slow, it's still MY race. I finished in about 35 1/2 minutes, clock time (race wasn't chip timed, so in my mind I am going to think that I was maybe closer to 34 or 34 1/2 minutes). All-in-all not so bad considering I walked the hills. And if they deem this 1st year for the race a success (which I think they will), I will definitely be back next year!

Once the race was done and the awards handed out, and the raffle drawing was complete my Mom and I walked around the zoo for a little while. Mom couldn't handle the hills so we left out around 11:00. Once I got cleaned up and changed we then headed down to Barberton for its Mum Festival and spent a couple of hours there walking around and enjoying an absolutely beautiful day.

Since my last update:
9/18, Thursday - had some great "venting" time with trainer-Steve but that didn't leave much time for the treadmill, but managed to squeak out 2 1/2 miles.

9/28, Friday - session with trainer-Steve followed by 2.5 miles on the treadmill.

9/29, Saturday - Run For The Cheetah 5k, walk around Barberton at the Mum Festival.

Next race is the Nature's Bin 5k on October 4th!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Margarita Tuesday

Happy Mexican Independence Day aka Margarita Tuesday!

Now, for a quick recap on running and working out:

9/08 - Monday - 62 minutes on the treadmill (yes i posted this last time, but i am really really excited about getting in that much time). Final spinal block.

9/09 - Tuesday - got to the gym and stretched out, back still achy from injections so headed out for coffee and and a rainy walk in a nearby park with trainer-Steve. I have really come to cherish some of these times that we spend talking.

9/10 - Wednesday - training session, time to be poked and prodded and measured and weighed (ugh, i so do not enjoy these days). Overall, in the approximate 14/15 weeks I've been working out with trainer-Steve i am down 23 pounds and about 6% in body fat. All-in-all it is a good thing, I know this and I am truly truly pleased, especially considering the back issues I've been dealing with for about 5 weeks...just always wish it was more.

9/11 - Thursday - training session, did a good mix of upper and lower body.

9/12 - Friday - on treadmill for 40 minutes. About 11:30am, Thursday's workout lunges caught up with me big time (major

9/13 - Saturday - training session, one of the best workouts I've had in a long time, back was feeling great and my legs were still tired from Thursday, but trainer-Steve didn't seem to care (are all personal trainers this sadistic?), walking out of the gym to my car was a challenge.

9/14 - Sunday - skipped gym - walked around the Yankee Peddler with my Mom for about 3 hours.

9/15 - Monday - skipped gym - overslept when power went out overnight.

9/16 - Tuesday - treadmill for 55 minutes.

Now, to deviate from the exercise:
Saturday night went to Blossom with my friend G to see the Montgomery Gentry/Toby Keith concert (which I have been waiting for since April) and it was AWESOME. I stood, danced and sang the entire 3 hours...sorry G hope it wasn't too embarrassing, but if it was you should have joined me! - lol. YeeHaw. Thank you so much for going to all the country concerts with me this summer, I had a blast.

In regards to some previous posts about forgiveness and old friends... as i indicated previously I held some anger towards this person for not being there when my brother and father passed, and their coming back into my life was a challenge I was not certain I was up for. As it turns out, it may have been just what I needed as in the process I was able to find some forgiveness for myself and put some additional closure to the grieving process I am enduring.

Still trying to decide if I'm heading up to Put-in-Bay for an annual trip with friends in two weeks. It's a trip that I have been making for probably 8, maybe 9 or more years with my friend E and her beau R. I really enjoy these trips (sometimes too much -- or at least that's what the pictures seem to reveal, lol), so I hate to pass on it. But I've been watching what I eat and drink and with paying for trainer-Steve (who doesn't come cheap) and keeping my fingers crossed for a possible trip in November to New Orleans, I am not sure about the putting up the money to head to the island this year.... Oh, what to do, what to do...

I have also been kicking around the idea of when I should look for a running group to join, I know I am not ready for that yet since I have just gotten myself barely past the 3-mile mark for running, but I am thinking ahead and trying to set my goals for the fall and winter months. So how far and how fast do I need to go to be able to join a group and not be the one always lagging behind and running alone... Maybe I should make sure my back is going to hold up first?, nah, what fun would that be?...

Thursday, September 11, 2008


It is difficult to believe that it has been 7 years already and yet it is amazing how well I can vividly recall so many factors about that day in such detail...not thinking much of hearing about the first plane other than it being a tragic accident, learning about the plane that was hijacked right above me in downtown Cleveland as I stressed out about work and deadlines and then practically having to be escorted out of the building when we were told to evacuate because I wanted to stay in the quiet empty office to "get the job done" and then getting home and turning on the tv and coming to the slow realization of what was actually unfolding before us. Trying to make sure all my family was safe and secure in their homes, and the phone lines being completely tied up. And then the feeling of watching the first tower fall....and then the second. The looks on the peoples faces... How quiet it was with no planes overhead; and then walking up the hill to work and seeing my first plane in the sky again and just stopping and staring in awe, as if I'd never seen a plane before and the stranger stopped beside me doing the same thing and then the two of us looking at each other for reassurance that it was ok to see a plane in the sky.

I am sorry to admit that I have again been so busy with work deadlines, that it wasn't until I actually really looked at my calendar this morning that I honestly realized that TODAY was/is 9/11. But I have not forgotten the feeling of how proud I felt to be an American in those following days, and the immense love, appreciation and admiration that I felt and will always feel towards all the families who lost loved ones, to the men and women digging through the rubble, to all the policemen and firemen, and to the men and women serving for us here and overseas. To all the people on that day, and every day before then and every day since...the words of "Thank You" just do not seem to be good enough, but for lack of better words - Thank You, for having that special something to put your life on the lines for me, for us everyday of your lives!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Happy September!

September is upon us, and I've just realized that it's been over two weeks since my last update.

8/23, Saturday - training session with Steve, he made me face my fear of treadmill running head on and I go in 30 minutes walking and running, with the focus on getting me to feel comfortable on it and not focusing on distance....yet. This was followed by being stretched out, which was fabulous!

8/24, Sunday - woke up frustrated with some back pain, skipped the gym since I knew I was heading to the Lorain County fair with my Mom, sister and bro-in-law. Walked at the fair for 4 hours.

8/25, Monday - lots of stretching and ab work, walked on the track. Chickened out of using treadmill and headed to Cahoon Park for a run. Spinal block on right side, didn't hurt near as bad as first round of shots.

8/26, Tuesday - training session with Steve, back felt a little achy at injection sites but overall felt great, did lots of leg work today.

8/27, Wednesday - lots of stretching then hit the treadmill for 40 minutes; got in just over 3 miles in warm up, run and cool down.

8/28, Thursday - stretching and abs, didn't feel well headed home after 1/2 an hour and went back to bed for about an hour before heading to work.

8/29, Friday (would have been brother John's 58th b-day) - skipped work out, had chiro appt -- still recommend everyone go at least once. Brad Paisley concert at Blossom, great concert and only got hit with about 10 minutes of rain!

8/30, Saturday - training session with Steve, lots of stretching and upper body work, back bothered me at very end of session.

8/31, Sunday - skip gym, Geauga County fair with my Mom...walked for about 3 hours was really really really bad and had a deep-friend twinkie with strawberries on top (heaven), hadn't had one in about 6 years, it was worth the wait!

9/01, Monday - skipped gym, went into work for about 3+ hours (yes i went into work on Labor Day, that is just wrong!), had my Mom over for a cook-out and grilled lots of veggies on the grill (mmmmmm...)

9/02, Tuesday - skipped gym again, three days in a row in NOT good but had a nice chat with trainer Steve in the morning. Busy at work right now and a little stressed, worked late.

9/03, Wednesday - friend G's bday!! - training session with Steve, back has been bothersome (think it's work stress related) did lots to loosen up back. chiro appt before work. Left work on-time and went out to dinner with G for his bday, Red Lobster all you eat shrimp...that is just wrong, good, but wrong.

9/04, Thursday - treadmill at gym for about 43 minutes, hips were extremely tight so followed up with lots of stretching. Worked late again.

9/05, Friday (brother Dale's bday) - training session with Steve, upper body work. Just was not in a good place today mentally, struggled with everything all day. Work was a pain, and ended up staying late....again.

9/06, Saturday - skipped gym, left early to head down to the OSU vs. OU game! Go Bucks!!

9/07, Sunday - skipped gym, headed to the Fairport Harbor Perchfest with my Mom, got in maybe about an hours worth of walking. Watched the dismal Browns game...but being optimistic that SOMEHOW they'll pull it together for next weeks game against the Steelers.

9/08, Monday - have final spinal block session (left side today) at 9am so headed to the gym to get in a good run in case I have to skip tomorrow; got on the treadmill for 62 minutes and felt awesome!, about 13 minutes was spent walking between warm up, cool down, and once for water. Spent lots of time stretching, working calves and abs ended up at the gym for over 2 hours...what a great start to the morning! Final spinal block session went ok, in some discomfort this evening but will hopefully subside by morning and I'll be able to head back to the gym for another run!