how did you do it? and other questions I can’t answer right now

For awhile I will try to keep my posts to about just training and fitness. It’s something I don’t mind talking about – and if I get a chance to sit down and talk to someone about how to improve overall health and wellness and fitness, then I’m super happy to do so. But talking specifically about how I did it is not my favorite topic because I am still uncomfortable talking about myself with someone face-to-face about it all. But I’ll write an email or blog post about it if you ask lol.

I get asked a lot – especially from people who have not seen me for awhile – how I lost weight and got fit. Depending on my mood that day, I will either just say that I worked out a lot, worked with a trainer for a few months, and changed the way I ate or I will take time to explain with details about the (obsessive) running and strength training and learning how to do things properly from a trainer before jumping into it all head first like I normally do. And sometimes I just say, “I busted my ass obsessively” and leave it at that.

My point here is that it’s hard for me to talk about it because I always get self-conscious and a little embarrassed when people ask me about it. In fact, it took me a long time to not say “oh, it’s all because of my trainer” when someone asked about it or told me I looked good/nice/healthy/fit instead of just saying “thank you” and not make an excuse of why it wasn’t me who did the work. And once I hit the 100lb mark, I really cut back on the working out and training because of a lot of emotional and mental health problems and also because I did that in 8 and a half months – and yes, you’re right: that’s batshit crazy unhealthy.

But now I know how to do it right. I’ve spent the last 3 months researching the hell out of it – it is what I do best after all – and learning, learning, learning. I have taken the things I have learned along the way from living through it, from the trainer, from articles, from books, from doctors, etc. and am now putting it all together to keep myself healthy and moving forward with training. I stopped training with a personal trainer months ago and I had to start convincing myself that I was in fact capable of doing it on my own. That may sound easy but it was really hard for me to learn that. Once I conquered that – with the help of an awesome friend and my husband – I was able to put together workout programs, fitness plans, etc. for myself and I now share information with others (DISCLAIMER: I am not a certified trainer yet so it’s just me sharing information with friends…not training them).

That’s all I can say about my training for now. We’ll talk fitness and eating and training more later. And I’ll do it with less text…we definitely need to get some links and photos in here – otherwise this blog is just going to be chapters in a novel. ;)

 

There’s Always Time for Truth

A couple of months ago, WordPress emailed to say my subscription was due – to renew my domain name so I could still own refractionofmelia.com and use it. I ignored it for a long time because I had not written in it for so long and had forgot I even owned a blog. But I renewed it, thinking that one day I might write in it again. I guess that’s today.

It has been a year. Almost to the dot – I looked at my last post and it was August 10th of last year. I do not even know how to begin the update. Probably 100 million things have happened in the last 12 month to my health, running, weight, mental health, emotional well-being, and family & friends. It’s just too much for one post. Hell, it might be too much for one blog.

So I will start slow. I can’t guarantee I’ll be here every day writing nor that it will always be exciting. It might actually be depressing and sad and infuriating sometimes but I promise you it will be a story of a journey from top to bottom to even lower than bottom to practically burned to ashes. But it will include success, too. And resurrection. And stories of the most amazing friends and family and forgiveness and support that you will have ever heard. And truth. I promise it will be nothing but honest.

Honesty Truth #1:

Sometimes It Really Sucks To Lose Weight

Honesty Truth #2:  

You Learn Who Your Friends Are When You Set Your Life On Fire

Honesty Truth #3:  

Stubbornness Causes Cortisone Shots

Honesty Truth #4:

You Have To Just Breathe

I started this blog years ago about being obese, losing weight, and trying to run a half marathon. I will now have to begin again with a brief update. Later I will write more about my Honesty Truths listed above but for now, you should know that I am no longer obese. I have in fact lost 100lbs and after being a size 22/24, I am now a 9 or an 11 depending on what type of clothing I am wearing. I will talk about how I did it and how (unhealthily so) quickly I did it and everything & everyone who played a part in that journey. But not today. Today I will end by saying that I hope you’ll read about my journey and comment and question along the way – I don’t mind answering your questions. Today I will end with a photo that is my before/after – the me on the left is at a conference in July 2013 and the me on the right (yes, with a guy dressed as Austin Powers) is at a conference this July 2014. Today I will end with telling you that this blog is going to be about so much more than weight loss and exercise and running – it is now about how I survive/d the fight with demons.

before after

end of summer thoughts

So in case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been on a blogging hiatus. I meant to get on here and explain why and then just didn’t have time. When I started blogging again a few months ago, part of the reason was to dedicate myself to some “just me” time and allow myself to focus on me and not work or other things. I had let my life get to a point where there was never any time for me and I wanted to change that.

And then, well, this summer has completely changed my life. In the last couple of months I’ve gone from work, work, work to still doing a lot of work, but a lot of taking care of me and myself as well. So many things, ideas, plans, and goals have changed in my life just since spring. A lot of the change has been positive and involved be taking care of myself physically – which in itself is time consuming. With the arrival of my son here this summer and our goal of running the 5K together, along came many hours of training with him on top of my own running schedule. I also added in a personal trainer, which involved more hours of my time. Then I decided that I was going to start making better, solid, healthy decisions for my health and family and well, there goes almost every hour of my day.

Now the summer is almost over. My son goes home this coming weekend – one week from today. It’s my least favorite weekend of the year and every year on the drive back from Nebraska, I cry. I’m an excellent “drive-through-the-tears” driver. You would think that after 11 years I would get used to it, but I don’t – it never gets easier. And in only a couple of weeks, the semester starts again and my mad crazy of awesome begins at work again. My goal through all of this is to not stop taking care of me. I’m thrilled with how I feel and the results that I can see from training and living healthier and I have no intention on stopping – but it will be a struggle. I’m kinda notorious for working 60+ hour work weeks during the school year and my challenge will be to find a way to balance that with my fitness regime I’ve got going on. I have faith in myself though and I also have one hell of a support system at home (seriously – I have no idea why this man I live with puts up with me and my “hey, guess what I want to do now?” ideas lol).

This is me saying then that I won’t be here as often. Definitely not every day but I will keep in touch with updates and struggles as always. And photos – I so love doing photography that I want to continue doing photo posts. That’s all for now – talk to you all soon. :)

finishing in the race!

We’re back at home now – showered, hydrated, stretched, and rested. And it’s only 9:43am! I dig these early morning races. :)

The 5K went super well today – I felt like I was dragging big time but in the end, I was quite pleased with the results. From training the last week with my husband, my son’s pace was faster than mine (well, that and he’s skinny and 15, unlike his mother lol) but he stayed with me for most of it. The last 1/2 mile though he headed off ahead of me which was totally cool. I am so proud of him for training with me for four weeks and doing the race. Best summer project I’ve thought of for us to do yet.

I wanted to finish in 51 minutes or under (that’s where we were at 2 weeks ago) and I was really actually hoping for 45 minutes. I knew then I’d be doing at least a 15 minute mile jog pace which I would be happy with – but…my finishing time was 38:24 instead!!! And my son did it in 36:52!! Seriously, so proud. We’ve decided that next summer’s goal is to do it under 30 minutes. :)

Here’s my photo gallery from the day – enjoy!

The Brew 2 Shoe 10K/5K was sponsored by a number of great local business (in addition to Manhattan Running Company of course) including Tallgrass Brewing Company and AJ’s Pizzeria – so, after the race, I had a super tasty Tallgrass Halcyon Wheat beer (at 8am) and my son had some pepperoni pizza. Good times all around. :)

tomorrow is race day!

Tomorrow is race day! I’m pretty excited – and also quite surprised that these last four weeks went by so darn fast. I cannot believe it is August already! In preparation for tomorrow morning, today is rest day. No running for my son and me today – just hanging out and resting (well, and going to work for me!) – and drinking lots of water. Tonight I’m going to make the classic “before race” meal – pasta. My son is most excited about that part I think. :)

The race begins at 7:10am tomorrow so we’ll be up bright and early. My mom is coming down from Nebraska to see her daughter and grandson finish their first 5K together. And then after the race and the showers and recovery, we’ll just get to hang out the rest of the weekend which will be fantastic.

Stay tuned for post-race photos!

another training session

I write this tonight while sitting on my couch, legs on the ottoman, ice packs on my knees. Another lovely evening at my house. LOL

As I mentioned earlier, this is my first week of official personal training and my last week of training with my son for the race. Yesterday evening’s plans for running and training were completely thrown out the window because it was raining, raining, raining. And since I have yet to go buy a new membership to a gym, heavy downpour = no working out or running. So it was moved to this evening instead. I worked a little later today than didn’t get home until later than normal and since my trainer told me we were running this evening, my husband went running with my son while I was still work. That way, he still gets to run and I wouldn’t have to run twice in one night back to back.

But see, I assumed we were doing a long distance run tonight but my evil trainer (which is what I’m referring to him now, of course with nothing but love) had other ideas. We went for a jog for a “warm-up” – he seriously has a sick sense of what a warm up is, let me tell you – and then went to a quarter mile track here in town. And then he had me do a HIIT session there. It’s a damn good thing I didn’t run with my son beforehand as I had originally planned because I was sucking wind as it was. I don’t think I’ve ran sprints since like junior high. Holy shit, I hurt. And had some side stitches because Lord knows I was not controlling my breathing. BUT!! I did it. I survived another training session.

For real though, it sucks during the session but I feel good when I’m done – that I’ve accomplished it – I made it through and finished. And as I work towards my goals and work through these sessions, I will see results and be super happy about it all in time. Except the homework part – I hate the homework part. Homework is sit-ups and push-ups every night – I hated them when I was in school and I still hate them today. But I’m not being stubborn for once and actually following directions. Shocking, I know.

That’s the update for today. Tomorrow and Thursday my son and I run; Thursday is also plyometric workout day work with my trainer. And then Friday is our off day because the race is Saturday! Holla!

kicking it up a notch

Today (Sunday) was my first day back at it after taking two whole days of rest – no working out nor running on Friday or Saturday. I way overdid it last week while traveling – with running for so long – and my body was definitely letting me know it was time to take a break. So, I listened.

But, today pretty much rocked. It was my first official day working out with newly kinda-hired personal trainer. He has helped me along the way the last year or so but today started our very serious we’re-going-to-get-this-shit-done working out. And today was upper body and arms and he pretty much killed me. Well, in the beginning I was already dying and then he said, “okay, now that we’ve warmed up…we can get started” and you know I thought I might punch him. But I didn’t – I just did what he said and called him names in my head for the next hour. It’s probably a good thing I counted him as a friend before we started this because otherwise I might hate him by the time we’re done. I mean, of course, not really – he’s totally helping me out and teaching me how to do everything the right away which is awesome. And frankly, anyone who puts up with me in the gym or working out while outside wins a gold star in my book. Shocking as this may be, I’m not the easiest person to get along with sometimes. LOL.

After I got home, the family and I went out to run the course for the 5K next Saturday. I wanted my son to get a feel for it – a straight 5K distance through town, not just running around a park, and of course the three hills that are included. We don’t normally run hills so we needed to get some practice. And he did fantastic! I’m so proud of him. From someone who never went (nor wanted to go) running, he is such a trooper. We finished the course in 45 minutes and of course for most runners, that’s way slow, but we don’t care. Especially since last week we did the 5K distance in 51 minutes! Woot! We’re gaining!

So, those are my happy working out updates for today. Later this week I’ll give some stats updates since a lot has changed there. But for now, I leave you with photos from the plane when I flew home Friday evening from Chicago. So beautiful, you’d almost think they were fake!

clouds

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