Saturday, October 31, 2015

Taking Philly By storm Day 2

I am back in my hotel room after day number two of MaryFran takes Philly by storm!  I am physically exhausted.  Ok, maybe not exhausted, but my body is tired.  I have put more than 20 miles of walking onto my body in the last two days.  And that doesn't include all the standing and gawking at museum displays in between the walking.  So 20 miles of walking and countless hours standing.  Nope, I sat very rarely during my travels the last few I sat for about 10 minutes at breakfast and I didn't sit again until dinner......I ate my lunch/snack while walking (I had things to see!). 

There are parts of vacationing by myself that are awkward.  "Table for one"   and "Just one entrance ticket please"  are sometimes hard to utter because in our society it's just not common.  But you know what?  I have thoroughly enjoyed my two days of site seeing on my own.  I know that if I had been with my ex, while he can be fun to go with, we would have only gotten a fraction of the stuff done.  Part of that is because he would want to stop and rest.  Me, I just pushed through the achy tired body and went to the next stop on my agenda! Another facet of why we would have only gotten a fraction of the stuff done?  I read quickly.....I assimilate information quickly....thus I can typically go through museums at a pretty fast pace.   When I'm with someone I typically have to slow down to their speed, which is ok, but lowers the output of activity.

I woke up early and knew that there was not much to do at such and early hour, so I putzed around the hotel room and made my plan of attack for day two.  by 7:50 I was out the door and heading to the Terminal Market for a quick breakfast!   It was delicious.  I ordered Apple Cinnamon French toast which came with turkey bacon and orange juice.  It was delivered quickly and I gobbled it down just as quickly!  

First up for the day?  Washington Square.    Multiple unknown soldiers from the Revolutionary war are buried here and are commemorated quite nicely at this location.

Next up was a visit back to the Independence Visitor Center.  I had grand plans to visit the Todd house (Dolly Madison's house before she became Dolly Madison) and the Bishop White House.  The park service brochure said I needed to pick up free tickets at the visitor center.  I went.....sadly both house were not open to the public. BOOO   No worries.  I moved on to my backup morning plan.

The Independence Seaport Museum.

The museum was very well done quite informative and neat.   But it was definitely the tours through marine vessels that fascinated me the most.    I went through the Oldest Steel Warship still afloat, The Olympia  (Neat to find out that the Unknown soldier that is buried at Arlington was transported on this ship).  I also got to tour the submarine, Becuna. How can one NOT learn to appreciate the sacrifices of our military when you go on such a small vessel and see how cramped they were!   307 feet by 27 and housed 80 men for extended periods of time...AND had to be self sustaining and capable of attacking (torpedos took up room!)

The Seaport Museum took a few hours, but it was well worth it.   From there I went up to Franklins Court where I saw the open air house and learned about Franklin's house that stood in that location and I was able to look at the excavated foundation at the site  I visited the printing press shop and saw the printers in action.
I decided to splurge and spend the $5 for the Benjamin Franklin Museum.   I came away with a much better understanding of this man.  Forward thinking and honestly, quite smart.  :-)

Next up was the Christ Church.  I visited the graveyard (a block away) on day one of my Philadelphia Blitz.   So it was good to put the church into the memory bank.   The tour guide was good and seemed to know his stuff.  It was crazy to realize that they used to bury people IN the church....right on the aisle going up to the front of the church.    The tour guide was able to tell us where Washington sat in church and where Franklin sat....and a few other signers of the Declaration of Independence also. (Based on rolls and pew 'ownership')
This was a discovery that I made while leafing through a book I picked up at the visitor center the day before.  The Fireman's Hall Museum.   A free museum in an old fire hall.   A monument to firefighters and firefighting equipment.  The pole was still there...but sliding down the pole was allowed. (I know from my own town recently building new buildings that fireman poles are not allowed due to insurance reasons.)
Elfreth's Alley..   What a bust.  There is apparently a museum but it was not clearly marked where or even if it was open.  It was however a pretty little street. 

I saw this little hole in the wall bake shop and stopped to look at the baked goods.  I caved and bought a brownie.   Oh my word, can I say HEAVEN!   It could well possibly be the best brownie that I've ever eaten!   Very fudge like and gooey!  (for the record I had decided before leaving the hotel in the morning that I would eat a nice breakfast and a nice dinner and just get a little snack sometime mid-day....this did the job quite nicely!)
The quaker meeting house was open, so of course I walked in.  The reenactor was a bit quiet and not too forthcoming with information, but once you got him talking he was a walking encyclopedia for that era (Maybe not so much the quakers though).   The meeting house was where Betsy Ross attended at one point....and the building later became the first free library.
Next up, Carpenters Hall.  This is basically a building designed and built by the men that were responsible for building Philadelphia years and years and years ago.  Neat building. 
Teeny Tiny Museum near Carpenters Hall.  I went in and spent maybe a half hour looking at the displays.
And here is where my day started to go south.  I headed to Declaration Hall....only to find it closed.  No problem.  I moved on to my last planned museum..the Fabric museum and workshop.  The guy at the front desk was RUDE and made it clear that 'setting up a tour' for me would be a chore.  No thank you.....I walked out and yes, I already left a less than stellar review on tripadvisor.

Now the day began to look back up.......   An early dinner.   I was dreaming of Italian all day.  I would have chosen something more locally owned, but this was near the hotel and I was WHIPPED by that point and just couldn't fathom walking back out to find a little joint!
Yeah yeah yeah... after dinner I went back into the Reading Terminal!
And got dessert to take back to my hotel!

Friday, October 30, 2015

Day One - Mini Vacation

I'm on I'm not gonna talk about food.  ha ha ha   I am going to say that after all the walking today I can't even imagine doing a half marathon tomorrow.  ha ha ha  So it is duly noted that if I attempt a half ever again to not plan on site seeing the day before I run.   (see it's all working out well!)

All I'm going to say before I swing into pictures and a quick synopsis of day one is that I was once again reminded of how stupid fear really is. I wasn' worried about anything about the weekend except for ONE thing. I was worried about parking.  I don't even know really what my fears were about....finding a lot that had room, a lot that was close.....etc etc etc  Stupid. The parking was EASY...and I am parked literally less than 150 feet from the hotel doors.  Can't beat that (Well I could...I paid $68 to park my car for the duration of my stay....48 could have been free!  ha ha ha...but I knew the cost and expected it!)

Early morning drive and a breakfast on the go.....yeah, I ate fast food, but notice the caffeine!!!!!

So I got here about quarter till 10. I parked my car and after a phone call to notify family of my safe arrival, I was off.

I was walking toward the US Mint and saw the Federal Reserve with a sign out saying 'free display'  Well of course I went in.    It was a neat little display and I would have been more interested in learning how money is moved and whatnot if I had not just spent the last 8.5 years working in a yeah, I knew most of what they had.  However, it was neat to realize that the money from our bank comes to and from the building that I was standing in.

Next up was the US Mint. I was most excited about this visit.  No pictures allowed...but it was the best museum/tour of the day!!!!!

As I was exiting the Mint, I saw a grave yard across the way.  I knew Ben Franklin was buried very near hear, so I figured that must be it!  I treked across the street.  Sure enough, it was where Ben Franklin was buried!  Some might think $2 to visit a graveyard is crazy, but I was there....why not!  (and if I wanted to I could have seen Ben Franklin's grave from outside the gates!)

Back up the street I went to the Independence Visitor Center.  I picked up my ticket for Independence Hall and made the walk over there. I had a few minutes to wait before my tour.....selfie time!!!

The tour guide was pretty good and it was neat to stand in rooms where such important history to our nation took place.

From there I headed over to the Liberty Bell. :-)

At this point I noticed the time and I decided that I still had time to to hit up Betsy Ross's house.  I headed that way and decided to pick up a late lunch on my way........Turkey Panini...and notice the drink?  Pink Lemonade.  Not the greatest sugar/calorie wise...but something a little fun and STILL caffeine free!!!  And for the record I didn't eat the chips (or the slaw)

With my belly full, I headed the half block to the Betsy Ross house.  If you ever go...definitely pay the extra $2 for the audio explains so much more about the history and I could hear the cheapskates asking questions that would have been answered had the ante upped the extra $2!!!

I decided that at this point I would head back toward the hotel and geocache my way back.  There were not that many geocaches in downtown, but I wanted to grab the few that I could.   I picked up one outside the African American was pretty easy, just took a little deciphering to get the coordinates from an outside display.

Two quick virtuals were next up.....One where I learned about the origin of the Girl Scout Cookie (Who knew it originated in Philadelphia)   And saw a great view of the City Hall

I also learned about a Quaker woman who was hung.....martyrdom

I cut down a little courtyard and saw this piece in the courtyard

I then a few feet later picked up another geocache  I think the police man was more excited.  I arrived at the place and started to look and the police man came running over and said "I know what you are looking for, I've never seen anyone find it though!"  I started looking in seconds later found a little nano container and showed it to the police man. Friendly police guy chit chatted while I signed the log and then I said goodbye.

It was starting to get dark, so I headed to The Terminal Market....

where I picked up some food for my dinner....and then exhausted and roughly 10 miles on my feet for the day, I headed the block to my hotel.  I checked in...ate my food.....

I'm not a night life gal, so I stayed in to relax and plan my attack for the next day.  I had another day in the city and I want to make the most of it!!!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Do or die

This morning  I reached the 36 hour mark of no soda.   It was do or die.  Ok, maybe it's not that dramatic.   However, I reached the point where the head was starting to feel fuzzy and a little bit achy.  

I've been thinking about it a lot.  I've constantly put it off for various reasons.  There is always an excuse. "I'm off work and don't want to have a headache"   "I'm going out to dinner tomorrowand I know that I'll want to have a soda."   Always an excuse.   The most recent excuse was "I"m going to be having a little mini vacation this upcoming weekend and I don't want to have a headache that mars my good time."  

Today I'm biting the bullet.

This morning I decided, 'enough was enough' .   There will always be and excuse.  My Philadelphia weekend would be the reason this week.  Next week it would be another reason.  The following week it would be Veterans day.   Then I have a week long vacation....another excuse.   After that comes Thanksgiving.....seriously, I can't kick the habit over a holiday right?   Then my birthday.....who wants to do it then.   That brings us to Christmas.  I would be crazy at Christmas right???   So see....always an excuse.  

So I upended the bottle of Advil....swallowed a dose and here we and running.  I am hoping that the headache is manageable and or out of my system by Friday as I am off work and will be vacationing.   Thus far, the headache is a dull roar....not fun by any means but nothing that makes me want to cry. (without medication is another story!)

And the even bigger news, I lost 1.4 pounds this week!   I'll take it.  Slow and steady.   :-)

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Moving on!!!

I went out for a run this morning.  I got just shy of 4 miles in.   The good old arthritis was (and is) kicking today.  (Yes, this has been diagnosed by a doctor...I chose to not take medication for it...and instead am choosing to  get the weight off, because I know that shedding weight helps eliminate the affects of the arthritis on my body)

I took a sneak peak at the scales's not going to be a spectacular weigh in....but if I can hold it together today it should be a loss.  :-)

So lately, I have been thinking about my water consumption.  I bring my big jug of water to work with me each day.  Some days I am lucky if I even take a sip of water from it.  I know that this habit has to be broken and replaced with lots of water drinking.  I have in all fairness and honesty, cut back quite a bit.    I think I would do pretty good except for one issue.....caffeine.  The headaches hit me at about 36 hours.  Bad withdraw headaches that are no fun.   I cave to the pressure in my head and get a diet soda.  I know I just have to weather the storm.  I know it will be fleeting (if I can call a massive headache for a day or two fleeting).  But I just can't face it yet.  Yeah, I know...I'm a loser!  ha ha ha  Soon.....probably after Philly....or wait, then my week long vacation is upon maybe after that. (who wants a headache while you are on vacation....and staying away from soda while on vacation would probably be difficult anyway!)

I read this article on Soda (diet and otherwise) today.  Pretty good article.  (

We’ve gotten smarter about soda since the days when it was considered an acceptable wash-down after an economical meal at McDonalds, or a sensible diet lunch (supplemented with a smoke). Or have we?

Drinking soda is an easy habit to fall back into — it’s everywhere, and it’s easy to consider diet versions to be a relatively harmless vice. A sip for nostalgia’s sake or a quick caffeine hit can lead back to a three-a-day habit. So we had two diet experts tell us what happens to your body once you finally give up the colorful carbonated menace for good. In their view, soda isn’t just bad for you—it’s barely even liquid.

And while you’re trying to turn the tide on your soda consumption, rely on these protein shakesto see you through; rich, creamy and packed with filling protein, they’ll satisfy your sweet tooth in place of those beloved carbonated cans.

You eat less, particularly sweets.

Cutting the calories from sugar-spiked soda is a no-brainer: At 150 calories a can, those can add up to serious poundage. But diet soda packs on the pounds as well—it’s just more passive-aggressive about it. “Artificial sweeteners affect our sense of satiety,” says Isabel Smith, MS RD CDN, of Isabel Smith Nutrition. “Our bodies have evolutionarily developed to expect a large amount of calories when we take in something exceedingly sweet, and those artificial sweeteners are from 400 times to 8,000 times sweeter than sugar. It causes a couple things to happen: The muscles in your stomach relax so you can take in food, and hormones are released. With artificial sweeteners, your body says, ‘Wait a minute, you told me you were going to give me all this high-calorie food.’ It can actually send some people searching for more food, out of lack of satisfaction.”

You lose weight.

“Even though diet drinks are calorie-free, they cause insulin to be released in your gut because their artificial sweeteners are sweet like sugar, and that actually prevents weight loss,” says Miriam Jacobson, RD, CDN. “Insulin is your body’s primary fat-storage hormone, so it will have the body hold on to any extra fat,” she explains, adding, “Trying to lose weight by trading a Coke for a Diet Coke is doing the body just as much harm, if not more, because of all the chemicals in the calorie-free version.” While you’re weaning yourself off of your soda habit, add these fat burning foods to your diet, some of which actually block adipogenesis, the process by which fat is stored on your frame.

You improve your immune system.

The acidity in soda is bad news for your digestive system, eroding tooth enamel and worsening acid reflux. But diet sodas are especially treacherous for your gut—and the far-reaching bodily systems it affects. “Researchers are finding that artificial sweeteners may affect our healthy gut bacteria, which can affect everything from blood-sugar control to weight management to disease—how our immune system works and how our body responds to infection,” says Smith.

You stop your bones from breaking down.

The caramel color in soda contains an artificially created phosphorus that can be bad for long-term bone health, says Smith. Phosphorous is a natural chemical found in foods like beans and grains, but the mutant variety found in dark soda is like a dinner guest who refuses to leave. “Basically, you’re taking something that exists in nature but making this hyper-absorbable form of it,” says Smith. “Your body doesn’t have the choice whether to absorb it or excrete it, so it can cause calcium to leach out of bones. It’s particularly bad for anybody with kidney disease,” she explains.

You have more energy.

No shocker here: The caffeine in soda is not your friend. “Drinking too much caffeine can make you dehydrated, and it can overstimulate the nervous system, making you fatigued and exhausted,” says Smith. “I find that when people cut back on caffeine they have more energy because the caffeine causes very big highs and lows,” she adds. In her practice, Smith has seen that quitting soda can lead to a positive domino effect. “There is way more energy for our bodies in real food than in processed foods,” she says, adding, “When people cut back on processed items, they often look for more fresh foods and make better choices. By giving up soda, it may seem like you’re making one change, but it can actually change a couple aspects of your diet for the better.”

Now that you've learned the facts behind soda, reverse these harmful eating habits and start making smarter diet choices. You can lose weight fast without spending hours at the gym.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Renassaince festival and food

What in the world can I say???????   

I didn't do one step of running.  Ok, maybe I ran up the steps that one time when I was in the basement and really had to pee!  Does that count?????  

I actually had plans to run, but it just seemed as if I was busy from sun up to sun down the whole weekend.  That's a good thing I guess.  But bad for the running.  

My eating has been 100% tracked.  I have put it all down.  The bad, the good and the ugly.  It hasn't been stellar.  But it hasn't been off the hook bad.  Probably 200-300 calories over each day.   I am somehow still holding onto my lower weight.  I know I have to round it up and watch closely if I want to lose more.  That or I seriously need to pick up my exercise hot and heavy again.  

I went to the Maryland Renaissance Festival with some friends yesterday.  As always the food was delicious!  I was surprised...I thought we would have a lot more steps in.   Luckily I didn't go too overboard in my eating!  

Zumba tonight......and then running tomorrow morning.  That's the plan!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

It hurts

The tracking is going well.   I have weighed myself almost every day and I'm happy to say that the numbers are dropping.   Official weigh in for the week is holding it together for that event.  I did eat late last night and for that reason decided to forgo the weigh in this morning.  While I was out on my run I started to regret that decision.   Lessons learned.   I will weigh tomorrow.

Running.....well.....what can I say, but I have reached a decision.  The pneumonia set me back in the training by a few weeks.  I tried to pick it up and get back to it...but bumping my mileage so quickly didn't go over well with my body (maybe it was that in combination with the weather changing that messed with the arthritis....who knows).    But I have officially decided to announce that I will not be running the half marathon in a week and a half.  It pains me to say it.  It pains me to give up on this one.   I feel like a failure.  But, I also know that it wasn't right for my body at this time.   I will do things differently should I ever decide to once again attempt to undertake running a half marathon.   What would I do differently?   

1.  Be at a lower weight for one.   My arthritis typically hurts at a certain weight and fades away at a lower weight.  So it stands to reason that I would have much less difficulty at a lower weight.  

2.  Secondly?  I need to be much more consistent with my running leading up to the beginning of a training plan.  I would like to go into the training plan being able to consistently and somewhat easily run the minimum (or more) that the training plan expects.  Yes, I was following a training plan that 'assumed' that you could run 3 miles.   I could run/walk three miles, and that came back to haunt me time and time again as my base 'knowledge and endurance' were lacking from the get go.  

3.   Plan more wiggle room in the training schedule for the little surprises that life throws at me. (Like pneumonia.....and a raging case of poison that made running absolutely miserable....and a week of rain that messed with the arthritis......and whatever else that life throws at me).  Starting earlier......important!

4.  Possibly, try to find a support group that is also training for a half.  Even if it is just online, that would be super motivating for me for sure!  

So yes, the decision is made.  It's official.  It bothers me, but it's for the best.  Last Saturday I ran with the thought in mind that the run would be the deciding factor.  I ran 2.5 miles.   It felt good to be back out there.  I completed my zumba class on Monday.  This cool fall Tuesday morning I laced up my shoes again....and knocked out 3.5 miles.  I'm enjoying the shorter mileage.  I'm enjoying the lack of pressure to complete a certain number of miles.  I'm just enjoying the run. 

Today's run was a good one.   At about one mile in I started to falter.  I wanted to quit, I wanted to give up....I wanted to stop.  And I asked myself a question.......and this next part of my post is what came from my mind.  (As a side note, I have been long writing down lessons I've learned during weight loss.......this lesson grew in my mind while I was running....hopefully it wasn't a delusional thought and actually makes sense!)   Ohh, and for the record?   I didn't stop at that one mile "I think I need to stop moment"   I didn't stop until I was in front of my house at mile 3.5!

It hurts!

 The weather was perfect!  I was out running which should have made me smile to be outside on such a gorgeous day.   However, it wasn't an easy run.  It wasn't an easy run at all.  I wanted to stop so bad.  My breathing was ragged and choppy and my legs.  Oh, how my legs ached!  I wanted to stop.  I wanted to give up.  I wanted to call it quits!   But some words of wisdom that my brother had given me came to my mind.  He had gently (or not so gently) reminded me that aches and pains are there but they are rarely going to make you's your brain TELLING you that you are going to die.  The being out of breath from pushing yourself?   Yeah, your not dying, you just think you are.  You would pass out first and that is your bodies way of regulating your bodies systems.  I remembered these words.  And I made it a point to ask myself this one question every time I wanted to quit.  "Am I dying?"

Exercise hurts.  It's not for the faint of heart at all.  It is going to hurt.  If you are really pushing yourself, you will ache.   I can't tell you how many days I have been sitting at my desk at work quietly minding my own business until I go to stand up.  Then the groan that rips forth rattles the windows and causes my coworkers to all look my way in surprise. (OK, they have gotten used to hearing me whimper a bit and to watching me hobble.)  My muscles protest and that's just the way it is going to be, because the end result is fantastic.  You see, exercise if not for the faint of heart, but it is for the people that crave a total success in their healthy lifestyle journey. 

Half of the world has heard and repeated the quote from one of the earlier seasons of The Biggest Loser. It is a quote from the trainer Jillian Michaels.  And what is that quote exactly?   "Unless you puke, faint or die;  Keep going"   Jillian Michaels nailed it on the head with that quote.   Pain is inevitable in exercise.  

There is a fine line between in the spectrum of pain.   Aches and pains and tiredness are one thing.   Hearing your bone crack as it breaks seconds before you fall to the ground, well that's a different story.  There has to be some kind of question or realization within us that lets us correctly make a decision to continue on or to stop.   For me that question is "Am I dying?"

Am I dying is my first question I ask myself when a run gets difficult.  It's the first question I ask myself when I want to back down my level of intensity at a zumba class. It's the first question on my lips.  Am I dying?  I will say that some times when I ask myself this question I actually have to stop and think about that question.  I will actually start at the top of my head.  "Is my head hurting?  NO.  Are my eyes seeing things clearly?   Yes.  Neck?  Arms?  Stomach?   Yes, I systematically work my way down my body (all while continuing to run, zumba, ride or whatever I'm doing).   I can pinpoint exactly where I'm aching and then I can correctly and efficiently make a decision.   I'm not going to lie, there have been times I have stopped, because of the pain but many many more times I have continued on because I have realized that 'it's just a stupid ache in my shin".

Drat, I could feel the hot spots only seconds before the blisters were just miraculously there.   I was a mile or so from where I parked my car.   I thought about my options.  Should I walk?  Should I run.  Yes, I better walk.  This was pain you know....pain demands one to stop running, right?    I stopped myself just in time and asked my question.  "Am I dying?"  I went right down the line and pinpointed exactly how I felt.  It was just those stupid dratted blisters.  Everything else felt wonderful.   I decided to keep running.   Ok, I'll admit that the decision was partly because I realized that the pain would end sooner if I ran back to my car versus walk.  I ran back, my blistered feet were on fire.  I felt utterly victorious.  Ohhh, and that last mile?  My fastest mile ever up to that point in my life. Turns out I wasn't dying!

I guess I'm maybe a bit more hard core than Jillian.  She gives permission to stop for Puking, fainting and dying.  My creed is only to stop if I'm dying.   

Am I dying?   Hasn't happened yet. 

Saturday, October 17, 2015


I fell out of a LOT of good habits.....

It's no wonder that myfitnesspal actually keeps track of your streak of logging onto the site to track.  They know that if you continually do it and create a habit that there is a better chance of success.  Yes, tracking; as much as we don't want to admit it, leads to success.  I can't tell you how many blogs I've read where people have been wildly successful with weight loss.  They lose the weight and they stop tracking and that is wonderful....but each and every one of them when they start to slip up and gain a little weight go back to tracking.  It may be a grudging return to tracking, but return they do!     I've written more blog posts in the last almost ten years (yes...more on that later) about making tracking a habit then I care to remember.  It needs to be a habit...that's why I try to track the good and the bad.   I had started tracking back in August and was starting to see success....then I got sick....and things just happened.   No excuses....I messed up.  And while I've mostly maintained the few pound loss that I had achieved, I stopped tracking and I stopped losing.  Well that has changed.  I am tracking whole heartedly.  Tracking keeps me cognizant.   My first day of tracking I had a major victory.  I was running late and stopped for a breakfast sandwich on the way to work.  I ignored Burger King and instead stopped at a place where I could also pick up lunch to take with me.   I ignored the sub, and instead got a garden salad (which was really tasty)  which I had with the banana that I did grab from the house.  I ended up eating out for dinner.  THREE MEALS OUT!
It helped that I wasn't overly hungry at dinner.....But I managed to keep my calories right on budget even with eating out, but it also helped me to know that I didn't have many calories left in my budget.'s a habit.

Water consumption.  Some people may argue that this is 'not a habit'.  But honestly, water consumption is TOTALLY a habit.  Just like drinking a LOT of soda (diet or otherwise) is a habit.   At first a person has to push themselves to drink the amount of water that is recommended for us.  But one you get going it becomes second nature.   Once again, I've written so many blog posts about water that I'm floating.'s a habit.

Running......oh yes, this is a habit.  And for the sake of argument, lets just pretend and put the word 'exercise' in for the word running.   If you get up and everyday do becomes a habit.  If you stop for whatever reason, holy cow it is hard hard hard to get motivated again to do it.   Set the schedule and start....and don't break matter what (ok, maybe pneumonia and arthritis and whatever may be valid excuses!).  

Exercise/'s a habit.

Habits......such healthy habits.  Just a little bit of will power to start them, but SUCH awesome benefits for maintaining them!

So yes, I laid in bed this morning  It had been a few weeks since I ran.  Yes, weeks, much to my shame!  I had planned to run. Part of me wanted to run....but the other part of me wanted to stay in bed and just forget about it all.  "Why not start tomorrow"    You see, I was out of the habit and restarting the habit is very difficult...there is always that call to 'start tomorrow'.    The habit keeps up the consistency!

I DID get up and run.  I wasn't a grand long run.  I went for 2 miles.  I actually did really good for my two miles and actually went faster than any of my miles in the last few months.  So I'm good.  :-)  My knee twinged a bit (and yes, the arthritis has been diagnosed by tests and a doctor)....weirdly enough, my hip is what is sooo sore now.  Crazy!

Lunch/Dinner calories were a bit 'high'  but with the running earned calories I'm still under my I'm not going to worry.  :-)

Blogiversary........I realized just the other day that the beginning of January will be my 10 year blogiversary.   WOW!  January 5th to be exact.  I'm thinking that I may have to do something spectacular for my 10 year milestone.  Giveaway......start some group challenge.  SOMETHING.  I'll be thinking about this for sure!

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Challenge on

I'm going to share a story is the story of a friend of mine.  She lost weight before, back when I first lost my weight.   She did fantastically.  If you've read my blog for years, you might remember her, Julie.   I actually got to go out to visit her this summer.   She like me has struggled and has regained some weight.  She rejoined weight watchers and has been working diligently through the summer.  We talked quite a bit via email, text and in person when I was visiting (I am shamed to say we weren't exactly healthy in our eating choices when I visited).   She had a goal in mind.  She wanted to be a certain weight by the time she took her kids to Disney World in September.   She worked her butt off and did it!  She was under her goal by about 2-3 pounds.  Victory!   She came back and had actually held her weight loss....but then things started going south and she texted me yesterday to tell me that she is above that cut off weight.....yeah, it's one of those 'big' numbers that when you drop below you say "never again will I be above that weight!"     She texted me yesterday and we talked about it.  Immediately, I knew what the problem was.    Focus.  She had that Disney trip in her mind...she was single-mindedly focused on attaining her goal.   SHe did it...she went to Disney and had a great time and came back and floundered because her goal and her focus was gone.   We talked and I challenged her to a new goal.  A Christmas goal!   I vowed that I would weigh in and also set a Christmas goal.

Sooooo this morning I stepped on the scale, for the first time in about two weeks.  Luckily, I was still below that 5 pound vortex that had sucked me in a year ago and had only recently set me free.  But I know that it is just blind dumb luck that I didn't rise back into that weight range.  

So what is the plan????

I was 248.2 this morning.   I'm going ambitious.   Christmas is 10 weeks away.  25 pounds lost would put me at 223.2 pounds.  I'm rounding that to 225 pounds.

Here we go!!!!!!! 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

A stark reminder

I haven't weighed in myself in over a week.  Yeah, I know...bad.  Very bad.  I haven't been 100% off the rails with my eating....but lets say I haven't been tracking.   I haven't exercised. (probably since the last day I weighed myself).  I have just been existing.  

I have tracked my food thus far today.  So the line is in the sand.  I have started.....AGAIN.

I have been wanting to restart and do this once and for all.  However, it wasn't until last night when I was flipping through my flickr account looking for a certain picture that I knew was on there.  I was scrolling and stumbled upon these pictures.  

Compared to my current pics?   

  That's enough to make a person cry....wail and gnash their teeth.   But I know I want to be back there again.  Desperately.  So that means that I have to get myself in line.  No ifs ands or buts.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Purty New Shoes

I haven't been running lately.  But I have been thinking a lot about it.   I actually sucked it up and spent the $130 for a new pair of running shoes.  I'm SOOO excited.  New running shoes are AWESOME!   My new kicks are pretty too!  :-)

So I got these shoes and even though I am having some issues that would seem to make me want to not run, I am DYING to get out there and run.   Yeah, it's kinda scary to me too!

So why haven't I run??? Searing pain.  That is the name of the game right now.   Not all the time.  It's mostly just when I walk down the steps.  The first few steps are ok...but about 4-5 steps in it's pain pain pain.    This is so not good.  And NO, I haven't called this half marathon an impossibility yet.  (Who am I kidding?)   I'm hoping to get out there and run this weekend.....even if it's just a few miles.  

My eating is just CRAZY.   I'm determined that today.  Today is the day to turn this ship around.

Meanwhile, I am at work.   I ate a Belvita Breakfast bar....(soft baked banana bread...190 calories) for breakfast.  It works for me on the days that I have to work early.   I'm not sure what lunch and dinner will entail (but I am hungry).   I am leaving work at noon and I plan on doing some geocaching on my way who knows what my day will hold. At least I will see pretty things....hopefully!    The other day I saw tons of mushrooms!!!

Tuesday, October 06, 2015

The end of the road

Crazy day.....I was leaving for work and walking out of the house.  Luckily there is hardwood floors.  That is how I noticed that my left foot was making a weird noise.  It was clicking....the soft rubber soles of my shoes shouldn't be clicking.   I looked down and immediately started to laugh.....I was wearing two different shoes.  Similar at least....but different.   OOOPS

I didn't do exactly good with my eating yesterday.   GRRRRR   I had vowed to run today....but I ended up sleeping for 10 hours....and even when I woke up just going up and down the stairs is painful with my knees.   Meanwhile, I have the money I need a new pair of running shoes!

Last week I got some bad news.   One of my favorite customers where I work had had a stroke. He usually comes in and shoots the breeze with us on Saturday mornings. (He had been to see me the preceding Saturday.) He usually hangs out for a bit (unless the EMS squad is busy....he is the chief)   He is a great guy.  Over the last few months I have watched him and there have been more than one situation where I have flat out asked "Are you ok."   Life was stressing him out and it was obvious to everyone that knew him.  He remained upbeat and moved forward.   The news after the stroke was grim.   Very grim.  He had slipped into a coma and the damage was irreversible and furthermore there was nothing they could do to halt the degeneration of the damage.  We knew it was only a matter of time.   This morning the EMS Chief for this small town passed away.   He was 45 years old. 

I knew it was going to happen.  The reports were bad.   But it still hit really hard.  He was only 45 years old.  That is too young to die!     But as I thought about it, I knew that he had signs...he apparently had high blood pressure.  He was overweight.  He had stress.    But still...he was only 45 years old!  Yes, the signs were there, but at 45 do you take them seriously or are you still in the 'invincible' stage/age?

I am only 2 years and a few months behind him.  I am not invincible.   I have signs.   I am overweight.  I have high cholesterol.  My knees are riddled with arthritis.  My blood pressure has been known to spike (I'm still thinking it's the white coat syndrome......I just panic at the doctors office.....but who knows).   I have been lucky thus far that  my issues are 'quiet'.  But when are they going to rear their ugly heads and cause me a problem.   I'm not invincible.   It's time to start living my life in a manner that takes care of my health.  Which means that little 'oops' like my eating yesterday have got to stop!

Monday, October 05, 2015


Cakes and cookies and Pies, Oh My!   Ok ok ok, I haven't had pie...probably only because I'm not a big pan of pies.  Oh, who am I kidding, I haven't had pies because there haven't been any readily available.    

So those first few lines are rather telling.  I fessed up and said I hadn't had pie....which means that I did have cake and cookies.  Yup.  I can't lie.  And if you combine that with my most recent blog know, the one where I said that I was going to get serious again (I believe I said right after I wipe the grease from my Burger King breakfast from my lips) about weight loss; well then you know that it didn't exactly happen.  Well, I did wipe the grease from my lips, I just didn't get back on track.  Oops

I knew the 'restart was looming'.  I knew it all weekend.  Yesterday I just ate with abandon, telling myself the whole time.  "This is the last hurrah'.    What a pitiful attitude.  It was so pitiful that I had cheese and crackers for lunch (a lot of cheese...and a fair amount of crackers), some bread and butter and jelly, some oreos, and why yes, some apple cake (which was delicious by the way).   For dinner I did Subway...I got full fatted chips Doritos actually, I was thinking the whole time, "it's my last chance before I straighten up my act, better enjoy it!"  I actually ordered the cookies to round out my meal.   Later in the evening I went ahead and had some ice cream.  Yup, I did it up good.

But I had vowed that Monday was the day.  So I got on the scales, with fear and trepidation. But I needed to know my 'starting' figure.   What's the use of trying if I don't have a benchmark to show how far I've come.  So I did it!   It wasn't as bad as I thought.  I am NOT back into that 5 pound vortex that I was stuck in for a while.  I am not even on the edge of that I am happy.  :-)  

Seriously contemplating rejoining weight watchers.  They are offering the 'lose 10 pounds in 2 months' and get your money back" deal.  Tempting.  Haven't decided yet!

Here is to plowing through this excess weight once and for all!