Week 4: Mind Over Matter

For the last 2 weeks I cleaned up my diet again and was relieved as hell to see that my stamina and mileage improved a TON!  I still have trouble with snacking on the bad things, but I’m human and training is tough.  The more you exercise/run, the more starving you feel ALL day long.  I have healthy snacks… but I want the bad shit.  I try not to beat myself up too much because it’s not about “weight” it’s about how I feel and how what I eat effects my “performance” for lack of a lamer word.

Food was my complete enemy during college.  It was my comfort during a particularly horrible breakup, it took care of my when I was hungover (which let’s face it, was often enough being a sophomore and junior in college) and it definitely got me through intense study sessions.  So the 30-35 lbs I gained in about a year was no surprise but a wake up call.  I was uncomfortable, having digestive issues and I was just unhappy all around.  I also had no idea what to do about it, at first.  But, my tuition was helping to pay for this multi-million dollar rec center I’d not yet stepped into and I knew for the first time in a LONG time, I had the power to take control of my own body and mind.  SO, I did.

I stopped soft drinks and fast food first and after that was “easy” I started learning to cook.  Which was really awful in the beginning, which is why I share recipes now.  These are easy and (being a picky eater originally myself) cater to textures issues.  Eating healthy started feeling GOOD.  I was seeing results and over the 2 years of trial and error, I started doing better and better and lost it all.

However, NOW I am in my best shape overall because after having babies, I wanted to not just lose the baby weight,  I wanted to tone and tighten.  My body had completely transformed, but I already had half the tools I needed and a gym membership so I got to work.  Then the running came.  I was NEVER a runner, I hated it… and now I love it!  I rely on it and I use it as a new goal to conquer.

Pushing past those mental boundaries is hard.  It’s the hardest part of any new journey because your mind is intensely more powerful than we can comprehend.  Starting your day off with a positive thought or action will most definitely set the tone for the rest of your day.  This is kind of why I prefer to do a lot of my exercise in the morning, it helps me to get those endorphins pumping!  Evening runs are nice too.  It’s just preference.

Anyway!  The point of this is to say, being in Houston (Which I love and miss terribly) it’s that much harder to stay focused on my foods.  My parents love having all the bad things and I love eating all the bad things.  Granted, my mom cooks healthy meals (thank you, Mom), I still go for the 2 bad things in her pantry.  On the flip side, they have a ton of tree-lined paths, so with them watching the kids, I can go on runs solo, in the shade and it’s glorious.  GLORIOUS!  This trip, I stayed busy with playdates and little adventures, but always started the day with a run or workout because I have a goal I’m working towards and I stick to my commitments.  Even though I may have to alter them from time to time.  I’m extremely happy with hitting my goals and I’m decently happy with not inhaling as many bad things as I’ve allowed myself on previous visits.

This is how this week went:

Tuesday:  We drove into Houston today, so I decided just to do a little afternoon run.  It was my best yet at 5.11 miles!  It felt AMAZING!

Wednesday: I did an upper body workout at the gym – 25 mins and I did about 5 different workouts focusing on biceps, triceps and shoulders as well as some core – planks, butterfly crunches, scissor kicks etc.

Thursday: 4.01 miles, another strong run in the morning and I was able to get back early, shower and get to our friends house for some play date fun!

Friday: 5.6 miles!  I did stop for less than 1/4 miles but I decided to be OK with that and still count it as meeting my goal.  I wanted to get to 5.5 without stopping, so since I did stop, I pushed a TINY bit farther just on principle.

Saturday: I did a 25 min lower body workout using the smith machine, Hungarian squats, different things with the yoga ball and some core workouts.

Sunday: a quick 2 mile run before heading back to Lafayette and done!   This one was a bit hard, I didn’t sleep well and kind of ate bad the day before so it wasn’t my best, but it was something and I didn’t intend to go for a long distance this time anyway.

And today, I was planning on resting, but it’s a pretty morning and I have a ton of laundry and cleaning to do, so I might take the girls to the park for a little workout and play time then come back to chain myself to the washing machine and other fun activities for the remainder of the day.

Making time to train can be difficult, but I kind of already have a flow that works for me since I worked towards a 10K last year.  The kids enjoy going on runs with me and I let them bring a toy and/or snack to keep them busy.  And, of course, they love going to the park to exercise with me.  And most of the time, when I workout with them, it’s an hour or less… so the rest of the day is full of movies, play, naps, friends… there’s a balance.  Some days are more balanced than others, but again… only human!