Saturday, May 29, 2010

Day 102--Weight Loss

My weight is exactly at the same point it was in mid-April. If I'm going to hit my weight goal of 120 pounds, I have decided to keep a food/exercise log for the next month. I did the math and if I do nothing but sit on my butt all day and watch TV, I would only be able to eat 124 calories a day if I wanted to lose the last 10 1/2 pounds by the end of June. I don't plan on sitting all day, so I will easily be able to eat closer to 1500-2000 calories a day and still lose the weight. I just need to make sure that I get in plenty of exercise. The more I exercise, the more food I'm able to eat and still lose weight. It's only for one month, so I think I can manage to stick with it. I'm sure I'll drive some people crazy this next month, but I hope to keep that side-effect to a minimum.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Day 101--Pushed too far

I think I pushed myself a bit too far on Wednesday. That, and my dog Otto running me into a wrought iron fence, seemed to have knocked me down. The pre-paint taping of my friend's apartment ceiling may have contributed, too. I biked to work yesterday, but didn't run on the treadmill at all. I walked about a mile, but at a pretty slow pace. I biked home, but the last few miles were a huge struggle. I was exhausted. I decided to take the train into work today to recharge my battery. I'm hoping that one day of rest will be enough. It was enough for God when he created the world, so it should be enough for me. I will make up for the two days of missed running this weekend by running at least two miles each day. It works out that the place I'm painting is almost exactly two miles from my place, so if I run there and back one day, I'll get back on schedule.

I'm also resigned to the fact that I'll have to start keeping a food log. I can't rely on estimates to get rid of the last 10 pounds. I'll see if I can find one online that works for me, or if I'll have to create my own in Excel. Maybe my phone has an app that will work.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Day 100--Pushing the Cycling

I tried to make better use of my ride into work. I pushed myself for more of the ride so I could keep my heart rate up for some of the 37 minute ride. I managed to keep my heart rate in the target zone for 22 minutes of that. I feel pretty good about that percentage. I've been biking the city streets, so I have to sit at some red lights, and my heart rate drops out of the target zone during those times. Pushing myself on my ride in made pushing myself on my mile run a lot harder. I was not able to break 9 minutes today. It also doesn't help that I don't eat breakfast until after I get to my desk. I know it's not a good idea to work out for an hour with no fuel, but it fits my schedule better.

Speaking of breakfast, I've been trying to get more milk into my diet and breakfast has been where I've been doing that most days. The building I work in has about 10 restaurants and a few convenience stores. I have the hardest time finding skim milk in any of these places. Even the places that sell milk in cartons or bottles only offer whole, 2% or chocolate. I love chocolate milk, but I'm trying to lose weight. I don't like the taste of whole or 2% milk, and I'm trying to lose weight. I can't believe that Dunkin Donuts doesn't have skim milk while they're trying to push their new "healthy" breakfasts.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Day 100--Mile Run

I ran a mile in 8:30 today. I need to shave about 6 second a week, every week for the next month to hit my goal of breaking the 8 minute mark. I think I can do that. It's much easier for me to push myself when I can see where I'm aiming. I ran far enough today that I'm at 3 miles total over the last 3 days, so I'm keeping up with my mile-a-day goal, too. My weight crept back up yesterday, so that goal is going to be harder than I want it to be. I think I'm going to have to make sure to track every calorie to make sure I'm not under-estimating that portion of the weight loss battle.

I rode into work wearing my heart rate monitor today. My heart rate while cycling barely gets into my target zone. I know I'm still burning calories, but I'm not helping out my ability to run faster. I think I need to push myself harder while cycling to get my heart rate up into the 130+ range. I just hope my thighs can keep up with my heart.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Day 99--Working on goals

I ran about 1.36 miles today, so I'll need to get some more running in tonight to hit my mile-a-day goal. (I didn't run at all yesterday.) It depends on what one calls running, though. My normal walking pace is about a 15 minute mile. The treadmills at work call that jogging. They list 6 mph as running. I did walk about a mile last night in a quest to get some milk, and I walked that in about 20 minutes, including the purchase. I don't count that toward my running goal, though.

I am hoping to get a good running program for my new smart phone. The first one I downloaded couldn't get a GPS signal and the second one won't let me track online, and it's a German program, so I can't understand the problems. Those were both free, so just out some time and a bit of inconvenience. I may have to spend money for a program, but want to make sure that it's a good program before I shell out $5. My phone is fairly new to the market, so the applications are scarce, but building every day.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Day 98--New Goals

I have my 5K goals already set for my next run, but I want some overall fitness goals.

1. Get my weight down to 120 before July. This was my weight in July 2006 and I'm getting close to hitting it again. This is also my lowest weight as an adult, so that's really exciting. I'm currently just under 129, so 5 1/2 weeks to lose 9 pounds. That's doable, but because it's pretty much the last 10 pounds, I know my body is going to fight me on it.

2. Run an average of at least a mile a day until July. I'm going for average because I'm planning a vacation out of town in June, so I know I won't run those days. This is also on top of my daily commute by bike which is about 65 miles a week.

3. Run an 8 minute mile. My best time is just under 9 minutes, but I really think I can improve that number by meeting goal #2.

I think that these are all very doable goals and I know that they'll all help me to achieve the goals I set yesterday for my next 5K.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Day 97--Race Day (#2)

I hit my goal again. I was hoping to finish in 30 minutes and my official time was 29:42 That's 5:30 faster than my first 5K. I almost cracked the top 10 for my age group, too. I finished 17 seconds behind the 10th place finisher. I did beat 63 women in my age group, though. I finished 500th overall, out of 1,386 racers. I was 204 out of 772 women.

This allows me to set some clear-cut goals for my next 5K.
1. Break into the top 10 for my age bracket.
2. Finish the race in under 29 minutes.

I would love to be able to shave 1/7th of my total time off by the next time I run, but I know that's a totally unrealistic goal. That would mean shaving off another 4:23 from my time and finishing at 25 minutes. I'll be happy if I just continue to shave some time off of my Personal Best each time and will set goals that require me to push myself.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Day 96--Cycling

I've already hit 100 miles on my bike this year. That's in less than two weeks of being back on my bike. That makes 1000 miles this year seem reasonable. I did run a little over a mile this morning. First day with my new sports bra. It was nice not to injure myself while running. I'm feeling pretty good about the race this Saturday. Our team is up to four people. I don't think I realized that it starts at 8:30, though. Even thinking about that makes me yawn. Other than that, I think it will go well.

I will not be hitting my 50 mile run goal by Saturday. I'll have to reconsider what my next goal will be. Maybe I'll try to do a weight loss goal, instead of just hoping it will melt off with running and cycling.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Day 95--Rainy

I didn't ride in today because of the rain. I did get in a short run, something I wasn't able to do yesterday because of the running injury I sustained on Tuesday. It's not a serious injury at all. I just have what looks like road rash on both of my collar bones. My bra rubbed so bad that it created actual injuries. That did keep me from running yesterday, but not today. I managed to avoid re-injuring myself by running with my hands in my pocket. It wasn't as uncomfortable as I would have thought. My hands got warm, but other than that, it was fine. I also ran a 10 minute mile with my heart rate staying under 150. I've heard aerobic video leaders talk about the increase in heart rate when your arms are raised up, but I never actually noticed the effects until today. I'm going to try to run a full 5K with my hands low, like that to see if I can keep up a faster pace.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Day 94--rainy

The weather was just as cold as yesterday, and rainy, too. I was already up fairly early, so I decided to go into work and run before getting to my desk. I'm pretty lucky that by office building has a gym. It's not a gym I'd spend $30 a month to use, but for $0.00, it's amazing. It has 4-5 bikes, a few step and elliptical machines and 8 treadmills. Plus, it's normally fairly empty. I don't think I've ever seen 10 people in there over the full hour that I'm there.

I had more time than I do when I bike to work, so I decided to get in a full 5K. I ran it in 29 minutes. I know treadmill time and street time don't always line up perfectly, but that's still a much better time than I've ever done. I really think my morning mile runs on the treadmill are helping me to increase my speed. I was able to get the first mile in under 9 minutes, and didn't have to die, but was able to continue running another 2 miles. I'm feeling much more confident about the race on May 22nd. I will probably still be the slowest member of my team, but I think I can break the 30 minute barrier.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Day 93--Cold mornings

It was barely over 40 degrees when I left home today, so I stuck to city streets, instead of the lake path. City streets cut down on the wind a lot, which makes me much happier. There's also more to see on a ride down city streets. Maybe not more, but different. Many things that change every day and things I've never noticed before. I've biked the lake path so many times, that I have it memorized, and it doesn't really change.

I noticed a car parked about twice as far from the curb as reasonable, missing their side mirror. I would think that losing my side mirror would cause me to park as close to the curb as physically possible, but not this person.

I saw a sign for Hair Fairies while in the richest, most upscale neighborhood that I bike through. It's an entire chain of businesses set up to help parents avoid dealing with their child's head lice. Words cannot describe.

I then saw the side of the LaSalle Tower Condominiums which is the photo in this post. That's not real, it's Trompe-l'œil, which always impresses me, even when it's not the best example of it.

Once I got to work, I ran 1.25 miles on the treadmill. I ran a mile in less than 9 minutes. I'm not going to get to 50 miles by next Saturday, but at least I can get some speed work in every day.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Day 92--Cycling

Today was the first day of summer. Well, for me anyway, as today was the first day I got my bike out of storage and pedaled my way to work. I should get to bike to work the next 4-5 months.

I forgot how long it takes me to bike to work, so I ended up getting to my office building with about an hour to shower and get back to my desk. That's about 30 minutes more than I really needed. I used the extra time to get in a mile of running. It was nice to see my pace as I ran, rather than at the end of my run. I only ran a mile, but it was in a flat 10 minutes. I'm hoping to increase my pace a little bit every day to help me get to a 30 minute 5K.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Day 91--Running

I managed to fit in over 7 miles of running this weekend. That's good because the last few weeks, I've been spending most of my energy gardening instead of exercising. I've turned over the dirt in an area that had been bushes until last year when they cut them off at ground level. I don't think anything had been done to the earth in decades. I pulled out stumps and giant root systems. It was hard work, but didn't help with any of my running goals at all.

This week will be the first week I get back to biking to work. I was hoping to start tomorrow, but I have plans right after work Monday & Tuesday, and no light, so it will have to wait until Wednesday. I also need to get more running in, as I only have three weeks to get in almost 40 miles of running.