Embracing Awesome

Snowangel's 12WBT Journey and Beyond

A rollercoaster round…

So I have been rather absent of late.  I think I was expecting a bit too much of myself to be able to keep this blog up to date whilst in the midst of a 12WBT round.  It has been a crazy 9 weeks so far and my weight has been up and down like a yo-yo but I am beginning to realise that this round for me has been more about other achievements. 

While I have lost 2.5kg for the round so far, I have also made great improvements in my fitness and become more focussed on setting and achieving goals.  I have achieved a long-held dream to run 5km in under 30 minutes and I am now training for a 10k fun run in May.  I ran 10km today for the first time in quite a while and I loved it!  It was a really enjoyable run and a great chance to assess where my body is at.  There were a few niggles along the way with knees and glutes and those damn ITBs but I have been spending some serious time stretching and massaging and I’m feeling really good about how its all going.  I felt so good after today’s run that I almost felt like going back out to run another 10km!  This is a great feeling and I’m glad to know that it is possible to feel like that because my next goal is to run a half marathon in September. 

Well this is not much of an update – just a quicky!  But all is going well and I am just loving running.  So hard to believe that I could barely run for a minute a year ago.  Running is one of the best things that’s happened to me.  It always makes me feel better and it has made me realise that I am stronger than I ever thought possible and that the possibilities are endless.


Poor neglected blog…

My poor neglected blog! I have to say that I really suck at this! Just can’t seem to find the time to post or do any blog challenges. Maybe I was being a bit over ambitious! Well I’m here now to say sorry for being so slack and yes, I will try to post more often but don’t hold me to it because I am very unreliable.
Ok a brief catchup…12wbt going great, down 1.4kg so far and clothes falling off me, running going not so great due to hip trouble but I’m keeping at it and Sri Chimnoy event this Sunday looking to be very muddy but that will be fun!
Bye for now xxx

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12WBT Week 1, Round 1 2012

And it’s off and running!  The 12WBT program has finally kicked off after what seemed like an eternal off-season.  And for me so far things have started off really well. 

I weighed in only 200g heavier than my end weight for Round 3.  Yes I know that I should have continued to lose weight but I decided to cut myself some slack over the festive season and my aim was to maintain.  And that is exactly what I did but there was a price paid.  Although my weight had not changed much there was a slight increase in my measurements and this has been further proof to me that what you put in your mouth really matters.  My diet was not ideal and I am certain is the reason that I have puffed out a little.  I had observed at the gym a few weeks ago that I was not looking as firm as I had been.  Anyway, lesson learnt and I will endeavour to better next time off-season rolls around.

So back to this new round.  I did my fitness test yesterday and I am thrilled to report that I have now reduced my 1km time trial to a personal best of 5m19s.  Then today things got even better – I set out to run a cruisy 5k this morning and noticed that my pace was a bit better than usual so I made a conscious effort to maintain it and at the 4k mark I realised that if I really pushed in the last kilometre I could get close to the elusive 30min 5k!  And I nearly did it – another PB of 30m20s.  I was so excited I thought about jumping up and down in the air but decided that the celebration could wait until I reach the 30 minute mark.

Food-wise, everything is going great.  I am a tad hungry but the meals so far this week have been awesome and I am really enjoying cooking again.  I have chopped and changed a few things but kept everything within the required calorie limits and some of the results have been awesome.  One of the breakfasts this week has been Berry Bruschetta.  Now I am not a huge fan of toast and would rather eat only one piece than two.  This recipe called for two slice of toast topped with ricotta and berries.  Then it occurred to me that there are less calories in an egg than in a slice of bread.  How about I ditch one of the pieces of toast and use an egg to turn the other slice into French toast?  So I whisked up the egg with a dash of low-fat milk and a sprinkle of cinnamon, soaked the remaining piece of bread and then cooked in a non-stick pan.  Then I topped it with the ricotta and berries and it was just gorgeous.  And super filling.  And great news – it’s on the menu for tomorrow!  Getting excited!


12WBT Round 1, 2012

Round 1, 2012 of 12WBT is fast approaching and I can’t wait to get started.  Over the past few weeks I have been preparing myself by increasing my exercise and trying to eat right but i have to admit that I am really falling short in this department.

I start out the week with the best intentions but find myself falling apart at the weekends and the minute my 2 year old starts pushing my buttons.  I’m going through a very difficult time with him at the moment, so much so that I am even regretting my decision to have a child.  Every time he does this I have found myself resorting to emotional eating, something that I have not really had that much of a problem with before.  Well obviously I have but now I’m more aware of it and know that this is what I am doing.

Anyhow, I am determined to persevere and I am going to take the advice of my fellow blogger Deb and take it all one day at a time.  I’m just going to focus on getting through one day of eating well  and with the help of that wonderful little app My Fitness Pal, I should have myself eating clean again in no time.

I also think that the structure of the 12wbt program will help me get back on track.  While I know how to create meal plans myself, it is so much easier when someone else is making the decisions for you.  With Mish’s meal plans the decision about what to eat is made for me and I can just tweak the meal plan to suit me.

Pre-season tasks are going well and I am dying to get into the next one – diarise and organise.  This one is my favorite as I can plan out my training schedule and get prepared for those red-flag days. That reminds me…I better buy myself a diary today!

Training had been great but I am still having some hip problems with running. I seem to be able to run about 5k comfortably and whilst I am running there is not a lot of discomfort. It all comes after the run but even this usually settles after a day or two. It is a pain as it has put a stop to my 10k training but at least it has not stopped me running altogether.

Something I do have to train for in the coming weeks is the Sri Chimnoy Multi-Sport challenge to be held in Jindabyne on March 4th. I have agreed to compete as part of a team and will be doing two run legs…a 6k trail run in the morning and a 5k run (along a cycle path) at the end of the event. I am really looking forward to it as it is my first event ever but I better start getting some trail running practice. Luckily the riverside track here should suit me perfectly.


Back to boot camp!

Today I made it back to boot camp after work. Boot camp is not always on…it usually happens in 5 week blocks with a Monday PM session and a Wednesday AM session. I can usually only make it on Mondays but its well worth going so I get to train a bit differently.  I also find the group environment really spurs me on to push myself harder.  Today’s session was great and I only really struggled with the mountain climbers – they make me feel like I’m going to throw up.  So do burpees but luckily we were spared from them today!  It was great to really work hard again and I am looking forward to the next one.

I’m gradually getting my eating back on track.  I really had gone quite off the rails but the past few days I have been using My Fitness Pal to track my calories and while my intake may not have been ideal, it has been more under control.

I have been having some training issues this past week.  It seems that all that extra running the week before (thanks to the Bridge to 10k program) had caused a problem with my hip.  I think it’s a form of bursitis according to my self-diagnosing on the internet (something I know I shouldn’t do) but it does seem to clear up a bit given some rest time.  Problem is that I don’t give it much rest so it keeps coming back.  Maybe a trip to the physio is in order!


The countdown is on…time to get real!

The past few days have seen me quite busy and struggling to find time to blog or address my pre-season tasks for 12WBT.  And the countdown is on until the new round starts so I better start getting serious.  You see I have been just floating along since the end of last round, quite content that I have stayed within a kilo of my round 3 finish weight of 67.6kg. But yesterday I did my first gym workout in a while and I noticed in the mirrors that I’ve gotten a bit soft.  I may have gained no more than a kilo but there were bits sticking out that hadn’t before and I knew straight away the cause.  Although I have been training well, my food intake is really letting me down.  Nutrition is what its all about and I know I have to clean up my act if I’m going to get the results I want.

I have managed to get up to date with my pre-season tasks.  Found that some new excuses were forming, stupid ones where I think I can get away with eating bad because I have lost so much weight. It’s like I think “I can get away with it!” But I know I’ve been caught out by this attitude before and I am not going to allow it to happen again.  The other problem I have noticed is that I tend to eat badly on the days when I am at home. The cupboard is there and although there is not much bad stuff in there, its more of an overeating issue than an eating crap issue.  For some reason I tend to ignore my meal plans on these days, that’s if I even have a meal plan.  Have not been doing them for a while!  So time to get organised and start planning again.

Sorry this post is a bit of a ramble today.  Just need to get it out there!


Zuzka is back!

Towards the end of last year I discovered Bodyrock.tv a home workout website led by the amazing Zuzana Light.  I was gob-smacked by her strength and incredibly fit body – this chick rocks!!  I have no idea what chance I have of getting a body like that but she is definitely someone that inspires me.  Not only does she have abs to die for but a lovely personality as well.  She explains everything to her viewers and is extremely encouraging to everyone.  Just before Christmas, Zuzana and her husband Freddy broke up and he has since moved on with the Bodyrock.tv website with his brother Sean and some new hosts.  I have continued to follow them despite Zuzana’s absence and although the workouts are still great, it really isn’t the same without Zuzka.  Zuzka IS Bodyrock and always will be in my opinion!

But Zuzka is back!  I read with excitement on Facebook this morning that Zuzka had released her first ZWOD (Zuzka’s Workout Of the DAY) on YouTube.  I was so excited for her to be making this comeback after the breakup.  She herself admitted that she had gained some weight and lost some fitness over the past 2 months and she seemed to genuinely struggle during this workout.  And for the first time ever I was actually able to keep up with her during the workout when I tried it today!  It was killer but so good!  Zuzana really is amazing…she is a  beautiful soul, an amazing athlete and a massive inspiration to me – I am thrilled to see her back doing what she does best!


Afraid of the unknown…

I did my stress ECG test yesterday. The results were great…my heart is functioning normally and I am also quite fit according to the results.  But there is a part of me that feels I have failed this test in some way.
You see, the stress test involves walking/running on a treadmill at increasing inclines until you can go no further.  You can stop when you have had enough.  Well my problem is that I think I stopped too soon. I know I could have pushed myself further but I didn’t. And its been playing on my mind ever since. 
You see, I didn’t go into this thing with a game plan (why would I?) so I hadn’t considered what I would do at this moment. Don’t get me wrong, it was hard work but I know I gave up too soon and this was proven by my max HR for the test of only 168.  I’ve pushed myself further than that before!!
I think the real reason I am kicking myself over this is that I had the opportunity to really see how far I could go under supervised conditions and I blew it.  Now I still don’t know just what my real limits are and that is something that has always worried me because I know I hold back sometimes when I’m training. I hold myself back from pushing myself further and going into unknown territory.  If nothing else its a lesson learnt and I really do have to start finding the confidence to push myself into the unknown.

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That special something…

I feel like I just have to take a few moments to write about my run this morning.  I decided to do a run with a few hills instead of my Bridge to 10K training.  It was a gorgeous morning and finally warm enough that I could wear just a t-shirt and tights.  My run was going along as expected, I usually struggle a bit up the hill on the Alpine Way but I made it to the top without having to stop.  And then it was time to come back down.  I was at the 6k mark when I just had this euphoric feeling wash over me.  I found myself running faster than I usually do and I just felt like I never wanted to stop.  It also helped that the song I was listening to was quite fast-paced and if I hadn’t needed to turn around and go home I think I might have kicked on for another few km’s.  I did go on for a bit further because I was enjoying the feeling so much that I just had to keep going for a bit longer.  But then reality came crashing in to remind me that I had to get home and get ready for work.  Never mind, I ran an extra kilometre that I had not planned to and I felt great.  Gotta love endorphins!!  

I am really starting to understand why runners run.  There really is something special about it – it’s not just something physical, it’s mental and (dare I say it) spiritual as well.  All I know is that I am so happy that I discovered running – it’s not for everyone but for me it has become a very important part of my life and I am always looking forward to the next run.


Where is summer???…but it’s great for running!

I woke up this morning feeling keen to run again.  I decided as I was getting dressed that I would start the Bridge to 10K program that I have installed as an app on my phone.  I thought it might make things more interesting if I had a program to follow and a goal to work towards.

It was quite chilly this morning so I donned my thermal compression tights and long sleeve running top, an outfit I used to wear in winter.  What is going on?  It’s January and I’m dressing like it’s August!  But I can’t complain because it makes for brilliant running weather.  On of my greatest concerns coming in to summer was that I would find running too hot but so far this has not been a problem.  In fact, it feels like summer hasn’t even started here.  But that’s life in the mountains!!

I ended up running almost 8km this morning (there was a bit of walking in there too!) but it felt great to push myself just that little bit harder and further.  Sometimes I find it hard to believe that I run – a year ago I wouldn’t even have considered it! 

I started running after reading Mish’s Crunchtime book and realising what an effective exercise it was.  So I thought I would give it a go.  I could barely run for 1 minute but I kept trying – walk a few minutes, run 1 minute, walk a few minutes, run 1 minute.  You get the idea!  Then I discovered the Couch to 5K program and downloaded an app onto my phone.  It was great because a little voice would come through my earphones telling me when to walk and run.  It meant I didn’t have to keep checking my watch every 5 seconds while I was gasping for breath!  It took me a bit longer than 9 weeks to get through the program but I got there and I have been regularly running 5km ever since.  So if you’ve never run before and you would like to give it a go then give the Couch to 5k program a try. 

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