Weight Watchers Week 5

26 Feb

Since Sara and I had an overly packed day on Friday due to the Princess Half Marathon expo, we decided to just weigh in and skip the meeting. I completely surprised myself with a HUGE loss of 5.6 pounds! I had been sick, but I had somehow kept the weight off after I was sick.

week 5 ww

I know I probably won’t sustain this big loss after a 4-day vacation at Disney World and eating whatever I wanted (not the best idea), but I’m okay with that. Time to get back on track! I’m excited to get back to the meetings and start cooking up some new low Point recipes.

Stay tuned for my Princess Half Marathon weekend recaps!

Weight Watchers Week Two

3 Feb

Like I said last week, I don’t usually jump in to a “lifestyle change” by implementing every aspect of the program right away. On the first week of the program, I focused on tracking everything I ate without counting Points and drinking more water. This week, I continued to drink more water, and I tracked with Points for most of the days. I also learned from the first week to steer clear of sodium and to cut down on carbs. I tried to have one big salad each day to replace a meal that would have been carb-filled. And it paid off! I lost 2.4 pounds this week, bringing my total loss to 1.4. I’ll take it!

ww week 2 208.6

This  week’s meeting focused on believing in yourself and removing doubt. Do you believe you can reach your weight loss goals? If not, what makes you doubt yourself?

My leader shared the following with us…

Believe

I am capable of achieving my goal.

I love the feeling of making progress.

I am more than a number on the scale.

I have two choices: Make progress or make excuses.

I know that nothing tastes as good as being in control feels.

I will focus on progress, not perfection.

I am worth what it takes to achieve my goal.

I will never, never, never, never give up.

I am a winner!

We can all relate to that, right? When I’m feeling like this is getting all too difficult, I plan on taking just one of those lines and focusing on it.

We also focused on making small changes. What small changes did you make this week? Instead of just sitting on the couch while watching TV, I chose to lift free weights and do squats instead when Biggest Loser was on. I also started Plank a Day (follow #plankaday on Twitter and Instagram). Michelle posted a great tutorial about planking. Check it out! I’ve been doing the Elbow Plank and have increased my time from 1 minute to 1:30 in 6 days. I haven’t started running yet since the marathon because my body needs time to recover, and I’m sick, so the Plank a Day is easy enough to do every day and makes me feel like I’m accomplishing something.

This week, I’m still going to focus on tracking everything with points, drinking more water, and improving my plank time. I’d like to start running again, but we’ll see how long it takes me to recover from this cold.

Until next time!

Upcoming Race Schedule

26 Jan

Now that the WDW Marathon is over, you’d think I’d be taking some time to recover. Noooo. Not me! Here’s my upcoming race schedule!

I’m running the Lady Track Shack 5K on February 2nd with some other Central Florida Lady Bloggers.

lady track shack 5k 2013

I’ll be running the Princess Half Marathon on February 24th with the fabulous Sara from Running in Pink Project. We’re going to have an ultimate girls weekend at Disney together, and I cannot even wait! You can read about my 2010 and 2012 races.

princess half 2013

Just a few weekends later, I’m returning to the NYC Half Marathon for the third time! Maybe I won’t have pneumonia this time. If you’re interested, you can read about my 2010 and 2012 races.

nyc half 2013

I’ll be heading to California for the first time ever in August for the Disneyland Dumbo Double Dare! The Double Dare consists of a 10K on Saturday and a half marathon on Sunday. I was lucky enough to register before it filled up in less than an hour! I’ve never been to Disneyland before. I cannot even imagine how lost I’m going to get. I might actually need to use a map at a Disney park… gasp!

dumbo double dare

(photo credit to PavementRunner.com)

What’s on your upcoming race schedule??

Weight Watchers Week One

26 Jan

I’m never one to jump into something with both feet. So on this first week of Weight Watchers, I chose two parts of the program I knew I could handle. They’re challenging, but if I worked hard at them, they would become habit, and I could move on to another healthy habit. So, I chose to write down everything I ate without tracking the points. I wanted to get an idea of how much I was actually eating before completely diving in to the program. I also tried extra hard to cut out soda and drink a lot more water. I succeeded at both drinking more water and tracking everything, but the scale did not reflect my hard work.

I was down a few pounds as of Thursday morning (according to my scale), but I had a sodium-filled Vietnamese meal on Thursday evening. Whoops! So, I ended up gaining 1 pound this week. I might be the only person who gains on their first week of Weight Watchers. But I’m pretty sure it’s water retention, and next week will be much better!

This week’s meeting focused on creating healthy dinners. We all came up with a dinner idea composed of at least 3 “power foods”, 1 fruit/vegetable, and it must be 10 Points or under. I shared my Mexican Brown Rice Casserole recipe, which I need to revise because I now add ground turkey, and I’m not sure what the actual Points value is.

What are your favorite low-Point dinners? I have a hard time finding time to carve out for meal planning and preparing.

Photo from the week:

ww week 1 211

This week’s focus for me will be to continue drinking more water, tracking with points values, and fitting in more activity.

Back to Weight Watchers

25 Jan

I had made the decision to return to Weight Watchers quite some time ago, but I wanted to be done with marathon training because long distance running and losing weight don’t really mix. At least not for me. And I know that Weight Watchers is the only way I can do this. So now that the WDW Marathon is over, I was back at the meetings as soon as possible.

weight watchers sign

I was greeted by the warm, smiling face of my leader Kerri, who had also just ran the WDW Marathon and was really happy to see me return.

I filled out all of my necessary paperwork, weighed in, and got settled in. I was so excited to get back in to the program and work on creating a better body to run my next marathon.

ww meeting 3

This month’s topic is “Spaces”, and this week focused our kitchens and how an organized refrigerator can help motivate us and keep us on track. Some ways we can spruce up our fridges:

  • Clean out the expired product
  • Add lots of color- seeing all of those colorful fruits and vegetables always makes me happy!
  • Buy a Brita pitcher and keep it full- having ice cold, filtered water helps me for sure!
  • Cut up veggies as soon as you get home from the store. Let’s be honest. If you want a snack, and you have to choose between grabbing something quick and slightly unhealthy and cutting up some veggies, you’re going to choose the quickest thing, right?
  • Grab a Sharpie and write the Points values on things in your fridge and pantry.

What are your tips for keeping a Weight Watchers-friendly kitchen?

Photo from the week:

ww week 1 210

Yes, I’m actually telling you all my weight this time. I think it will help me stay focused.

Tomorrow is my first weigh in! I’ll be back to report.

Walt Disney World Marathon 2013 Recap

24 Jan

The night before the marathon, I could not sleep. I was excited, nervous, and scared. I was scared to repeat my prior performance in the 2011 WDW Marathon where I had stopped running altogether at Mile 15 because of blisters on my feet, and I walked the rest of the way. I had such a bad attitude about that race and felt so disappointed in myself despite accomplishing something so great.

I hadn’t trained hard enough for this marathon. I had gotten up to 17 miles in mid-November, and even then, I had to take lots of breaks. But the morning of the marathon, I decided I was going to toe the start line with a positive attitude and just have fun. I arranged all of my marathon necessities and climbed into my bunk bed (we were staying in one of the cabins at Fort Wildnerness).

cabin

Two o’clock couldn’t come fast enough. I tossed and turned all night. Luckily, I had some friends who indulged me in a few games of Words with Friends. Everyone got up at 2 and changed into our gear. Anne Marie was nice enough to braid my hair!

braids

before the race

We were out the door around 3:15am and caught the bus to Epcot.

bus

 

As soon as we arrived at Epcot, we immediately made our way to the corrals and waited there patiently until it was our turn to move up to the starting line.

Anne Marie and I made a promise to stick together for the race, and so we did. We agreed on 2/1 run/walk intervals (run for 2 minutes, walk for 1). The first few miles went by very quickly and before we knew it, we were at the Magic Kingdom toll plaza.

We held a steady, slow pace of approximately 13:10/mile for the first 5 miles. By that time, we were entering Magic Kingdom and getting ready to run through Cinderella Castle!

main street

castle

My pace dropped to close to 14-15 minutes for Miles 6-9 as we headed out of Magic Kingdom, dealt with a single-lane road by the Grand Floridian and ran our way around the Richard Petty Raceway (a new addition to this year’s course). I wasn’t a fan of the race track because it was long, boring, and I’m just not a fan of Nascar/races/anything related to racing cars. When we were running around the track, my legs were aching and dying for some Bio Freeze. I had never used Bio Freeze until this race, but I had heard enough amazing things about it. I believe “circus in your pants” was the quote which inspired me to stick my hands full of Bio Freeze right down my pants at the med tent around the 10th mile marker. Within seconds, I could feel the tingly, iceberg sensation and was good for a few more miles.

Miles 10, 11, and 12 are pretty boring as they are spent on a back road to Animal Kingdom, and my pace had slowed to around 16 minute miles because I had scaled back to 1/1 intervals. The heat was getting to me, and my shoulders were aching. I was feeling pretty fatigued altogether. But it was nice to get a little pick-me-up by running around Animal Kingdom, despite the narrow and winding walkways.

everest

I believe the half-marathon mark was somewhere just outside of Animal Kingdom, and it was around this time that I could no longer consistently keep up with Anne Marie and our intervals, so she went ahead and ran her own race. To be honest, I needed to do the rest of the marathon on my own and my own pace without any pressure. It was such a relief to have her by my side for the first 13-14 miles because the time went by so fast, but it was time for me to finish this on my own. And by that time, I had less than a half marathon to go, and I was feeling pretty good despite everything.

Miles 15-17 were at about a 16 minute/mile pace, and it was all on Osceola Parkway going from Animal Kingdom to the Wide World of Sports.

mile 16

I spent a little too much time at a medical tent along the way because they were running out of Bio Freeze, and it took all of us some time to squeeze as much out of the bottle as we could. Miles 18 and 19 were spent in the Wide World of Sports complex, and we got to “run the bases” on the baseball field where the Atlanta Braves hold their spring training.

baseball field

Once we were out of Wide World of Sports, it was time for the Mile 20 Spectacular, a surprise Run Disney had been promoting for months. It was a display of large, moving puppets, an archway displaying all 20 of the WDW Marathon medals, and Mickey, Goofy, and Donald were up on a podium.

After this, I knew I only had about 6.5 miles left, which was completely do-able. It was going to be a short-ish run to and around the Hollywood Studios, a run to the Yacht and Beach Club, and a run around the countries. I was trying to calculate my pace to see if I could PR, but unfortunately, my brain was in “marathon mode”, and I was completely incapable of doing math. But what I could figure was that I could come pretty close to breaking my past marathon time. I was walking some, but I ran when I could and even when I thought I couldn’t.

2

My pace ranged from 16-18 minute miles for the last 6.5 miles. I was honestly giving everything I could and still having fun. Jackie (MomJovi) snagged this picture of me and Mr. Incredible as I was running past France.

181a41485db211e2a5d622000a1e94d6_7

I was surprisingly all smiles and absolutely drenched in sweat.

Before I knew it, I was rounding Mexico and heading towards Spaceship Earth and eventually towards the finish line!

1

finish line

finish 2

I finished in 6:54:57. Just 94 seconds slower than my 2011 time.

finish time

splits

(I forgot to stop my Garmin at the finish line and didn’t realize it for a few minutes)

My medal was hung around my neck as I held back a variety of emotions. My first thought was “this wasn’t a fluke! I’ve done TWO now!” Then the tears came. I was so dang proud of myself, and I had FUN!

finisher

medal 2

I gathered up 2 bananas, the silly lunchbox they keep insisting on giving us, and my favorite post-race treat, a real Coke.

coke

lunchbox

lunchbox 2

I grabbed a seat near the big TV screen so I could watch a few more friends cross the finish line, and then I caught up with everyone else.

the three of us

anne marie me

The three of us had all finished and were feeling pretty good despite just finishing a full marathon. We took all of our obligatory photos and caught the bus back to Fort Wilderness, where we made our way to the hot tub as soon as we could when we got back.

That evening, we checked out the “after party” at Downtown Disney. It was pretty much more photo opportunities, some live music, undiscounted marathon merchandise, and some of the restaurants offered food discounts.

Time to reflect…

My 2011 WDW Marathon race was just plain awful. I didn’t have fun. I battled blisters on my feet, and I walked the last 11 or so miles (even though I probably could have tried to run a little bit). I honestly felt like I had given up. Although my time was 94 seconds slower than that awful race, I had fun this time. I felt like I really accomplished something. I gave it everything I had, and I was still able to do some running intervals even at the very end.

I said last time that I would never run a marathon at that weight again. I was disgusted by my pictures. To be honest, I’m the same weight now as I was then. I look at the photos from this race, and I’m not going to lie. I see the fat rolls and the extra weight on my entire body. But do you know what else I see? I see a confident, strong, and happy athlete.

I’ve now run two full marathons, and I’m so damn proud of myself. I’ve gone from the sophomore on the high school cross country team who always brought up the rear and was almost denied a varsity letter because I was so slow to a two-time marathoner. Fifteen-year-old me would be amazed and so proud if she knew I’d still be running at 31.

Completing this marathon has really inspired me to lose the weight and really get more involved with yoga. And I’d also like to give bootcamp or Crossfit a try. I know I definitely want to sign up for next year’s WDW Marathon, and maybe I’ll sign up to run Goofy (1/2 marathon on Saturday and the full marathon on Sunday)!

Did you run the WDW Marathon? What did you think? What’s your favorite race you’ve ever done? Which race do you really want to do in the future?

Walt Disney World Marathon Health & Fitness Expo

18 Jan

For the first time, I was one of the first people in to the marathon expo. And good thing too because so much of the merchandise sold out fast!

Waiting in line with Michael and Anne Marie, my running buddies for the week.

 

The expo floor before any participants stepped foot on it.

We bee-lined our way to the official Disney merchandise.

 

I completely forgot to take any pictures of my stash, but I got myself a coffee mug, a keychain, an  “I Did It” shirt, a sweatshirt, and a long sleeve shirt. After splurging on those items, I decided to empty out the rest of my bank account on the new, limited edition, New Balance Run Disney sneakers.

I normally don’t run in New Balance shoes, so I got these solely for casual purposes like errand running and park-hopping. They’re super cute, and I’ve already gotten a ton of compliments on them.

After browsing all of the booths and picking up a few packages of GU Chomps, we headed over to the packet pick-up.

And tested out our D-Tags to make sure our splits would be populated on Sunday.

After that, it was time to just have some fun with photos!

Stay tuned for my marathon recap!

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