Sunday, September 25, 2011

I did it...You CAN too!

So, I ran across some photos recently of my "Fat Days". I know I've lost a lot of weight over the past year but to see it in pictures really makes it REAL for me. If that makes any sense. I'm not proud that I had let myself get so overweight but I am happy to say that through a lot of hard work I've lost it.

Just a year ago at this time I was training for my first 5k and beginning to lose weight. A year later and I'm training to run a full marathon in less than 70 days.

I'm printing the pictures below and hanging them up in my bathroom as a reminder to myself that I NEVER want to be that overweight again.

A little back story. My doctor is also a friend from Church. So I see him at Church on Sunday and different events that the Church puts on. I was in to see the doctor last week because I was having some back pain (as mentioned in my last blog post). It is a pinched nerve. On Sunday, our Church hosted "Taste Of Cottonwood". All the Life Groups (Adult Sunday School) put up a table with a featured dish. I'm our classes social director so I orchestrated our classes theme (Breakfast Casseroles) and was at the event helping to serve samples. Keith did his normal wandering around and talking to everyone. He is so shy! He saw Doc and asked him if he had finally fixed me so I would quit complaining. He is so sympathetic. Keith also asked him what he thought about the 83 pounds I lost. Turns out Doc said I had lost A LOT more than that.

Let me backtrack a bit....when I started running in May 2010 and changed up my diet in July 2010 I "guesstimated" on my weight. We didn't have a scale at the time and I did not want one because I could look in the mirror and see how overweight I was. It is a good thing doctors keep a record of your weight when you come in or you may never now the real number. Back to today....I called the Doctor's office to get my official "High" weight and to my AMAZEMENT I have lost 131 pounds since October 2008.

131 POUNDS! That is a small adult or teen. I am flabbergasted! I now realize why I get the reaction I do from people I haven't seen in a long time.

So, I say to those of you who are struggling with weight loss, IT CAN BE DONE! Take baby steps, start out slow but know that YOU can do it. Find what you enjoy and stick with it. I'm a real example of someone who did it!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
Proverbs 3:5-6

Thursday, September 22, 2011

TDF '11

I ran a 20k race known as "Tour des Fleurs" this past Saturday with my Luke's Locker running group. The race is included as part of our Lukes Fit Marathon Training. It began at the Dallas Arboretum and followed the White Rock Lake trail and veered into some of the beautiful older Dallas neighborhoods. This is part of the White Rock Marathon that I will be running later this year.

The Arboretum is all decked out for fall and beautiful. I'd like to take the kids back to see it.

The race started at 7:30 a.m. and the night before it had rained. It was VERY humid out. The humidity was disappointing since the weekend before we were spoiled and got to enjoy cool, fall like, weather. I was not pleased with my time of 2:32:51. However, I was thrilled to get an email from our coaches recapping the race. I wasn't the only one complaining about my pace and several other runners commented that their time was slower than their best half. The coaches had the following to say:

* The weather-need I say more. November and March are far better Half Marathon months than September.

* You are not currently optimally trained for THIS distance. Our current focus is a race more than twice as long as this 20K. We have just completed hill training which has stressed our bodies and we did not taper (rest and recover) for this race.

* This race really wasn't a 'race' for us, it was a training run to practice a distance at our marathon goal paces-faster than what we have been doing our long runs, but not as fast as I know most of you could run this distance under ideal conditions.

So, personally I felt great the first half of the race. As we veered off the lake path and into the neighborhoods it got really HILLY. I was doing great until I got to one hill that never seemed to end. I don't know which street this was but I decided to walk the hill. It was after this that my toes started to bother me. I think this was around mile 8.

The last .4 miles seemed never ending. I was dog tired, my foot was killing me and my back was bothering me which I found out today is the result of a piched nerve. My lower back has been bothering me for a couple months, I've had trouble sitting because of the pain so I finally went to see my doctor. He said it was a pinched nerve and put me on a 9 day steroid regimen. I'm hoping this helps clear it up.

But I FINISHED and am mentally preparing for this Saturday's 16 miler.


Me along the trail.

About to cross finish line with running coach, Kristen.

20K Results (click to enlarge)

LIVE 80 – The Ultimate 80′s Experience – played 80′s hits on the Martin Rutchik Concert Lawn

Have a blessed week!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A visit with my Grandparent's

Early Saturday morning I headed out with Kim and dad and we drove to Minnesota. Nothing like a 14 hour drive to kick off the holiday weekend.

We arrived in Pine Island, MN around 8:15 p.m. that evening and were greeted by my grandfather. The last time I had seen my grandfather just over a year ago when he moved from Sherman, TX to Pine Island, MN. He didn't recognize me at first. I've lost 82 pounds since I last saw him and if you know my grandfather then you know he says exactly what everyone is thinking. There is no sugar coating his remarks and you need to have a thick skin around him. Once he realized it was his eldest granddaughter he had to share that the last time he saw me I was for a lack of a better word, huge. He held his hands very far apart to emphasize how wide I was when he last saw me. And for the remainder of my visit asked everyone we encountered who knew me to "guess how much weight I'd lost?" Gotta love that old man. That is just the way he is and in his own way was expressing how proud he was of me. Our family certainly gets our sarcasm from Grandpa Jackson.

Sunday morning after Kim and I woke up...around 9:00 (nice to get to sleep in) we ate a little breakfast and chatted with dad and grandpa at the breakfast table then headed out for a run on the Douglas Trail. It was a beautiful morning, in the mid 50's and I actually enjoyed my run. Amazing what cooler temperatures will do for your endurance during a run. The 6.5 miles flew by with beautiful scenery, cool temps and a flat trail ;-)

After our run we enjoyed a little lunch and headed to the nursing home to visit Grandma Jackson. It is hard to see her in this enviorment. All my memories of Grandma are of a very active and healthy older woman. It saddens me to see her frail and needing assistance to accomplish everyday tasks. I certainly treasure the time we spent visiting with her and it's great to hear all the stories she and grandpa share. They have been married for 66 years and first met when they were 13 years old. Her mind is sharp and she can recall details from 60+ years ago as if they were yesterday.

My cousin, Troy, stopped in to drop off a gift for grandma the first day we were there visiting. He had been on a business trip in Paris and brought her back some chocolates. Kim and I looked at each other and said that he was trying to one up us. After we left the hospital we stopped at Aunt Low & Uncle Joe's home to visit a little more with Troy and his precious daughter, Lizzy. Afterwards, we went back to grandpa's to heat up a homemade lasagna Aunt Low had left for us. Guess who had been by grandpa's? Yep, Troy. He had left grandpa a bottle of cognac from none other than Paris. What a brown noser! ;-) In the picture below you can see Kim, dad and grandpa enjoying the cognac as we waited for dinner to finish cooking.

Monday we headed to Aunt Low and Uncle Joe's home for a nice steak lunch. We were spoiled this trip by Aunt Low's generosity and delicious cooking. We had a nice visit with them before heading to the nursing home.

After our visit with grandma at the nursing home we headed back to grandpa's and Kim and I took an evening run. We went on the same Douglas trail and enjoyed the 60 degree weather and smell of the fresh outdoors. We ran 7 miles that evening and then returned to grandpas where we had a entertaining game of scrabble.

Tuesday morning was our last day in MN. We woke up and headed over to Aunt Low & Uncle Joe's to borrow their bikes for a bike ride. Uncle Joe went with us. A little side story, back in the early 80's Uncle Joe took Kim and I on what was suppose to be a little ride around town. That little ride ended up being a 30 mile bike ride. I don't remember our exact ages but if I had to guess I would say Kim was around 8 which would make me 13. After returning from this bike ride Kim got sick. To this day Kim claims that her getting sick was not a result of the long bike ride but rather a poorly timed bug. The rest of the family believes she got sick after being forced to ride 30 miles. Anyway, Uncle Joe agreed to go on a bike ride with us and we headed to the trail and had a relaxing 10 mile ride. We were much kinder to our Uncle than he had been on us many years before. It was nice visiting with him and enjoying the beautiful fall weather. It was in the high 50's when we headed out on our ride. Pine Island has a borrow a bike program and we passed by the building while we were out.

Soon after passing this building Uncle Joe was trying to get my attention to take another route. When I looked back at him his bike had hit a lip in the road and he flew over his handle bars, tucked in a shoulder and did a somersault on the pavement and then jumped up like a jack-in-the-box. Thankfully, he wasn't hurt and there was no blood, but it now gives us a new story to replace the one we created 20+ years ago when Kim got sick.

After returning the bikes to Uncle Joe's we walked the 1/4 mile back to grandpa's to shower and have lunch before heading back to the nursing home for one last visit.

I am so thankful for the opportunity to visit with my grandparent's for a few days. Tuesday's visit my grandmother looked her best. The two days before she had been in her bed during our visit. I'm glad my last memory of this visit was of her up and out of bed.

Kim and I then headed to the airport. My dad and grandpa drove us into the city to catch our flight and luckily everything was running on time. We even made it back to Dallas 30 minutes earlier than planned.

Thank you to my MN family for your generous hospitality!

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