May 29, 2015

A Setback...

Tomorrow was the big day; the culmination of 3 months of training – my first half marathon.  It is what has occupied so many of my thoughts, so much of my time and energy for 12 long weeks.  I have put so much of my life on hold while I trained for this race.  Let alone the time it has taken away from my hubby, and through it all he has been nothing but supportive.  So many of my long runs took me away from home for half the day, only to come home tired, barely walking or able to do anything for the rest of the day…and there he was waiting for me with my couch woobie, ice, and dvr’d marathons of Fixer Upper and Alaska: The Last Frontier. 

But apparently, this particular half was not meant to be.  After all those hours, I am sad to say that I am not going to be able to run tomorrow and I am devastated.  After my last long run of 9 miles, I badly injured my knee so I have been resting it for my race.  But this week, I decided to see how it was doing and I started to jog even though it’s still been hurting me…I thought I gave it enough time; I thought I could run through it.  The truth is that I couldn’t even run a block without it blowing up like a balloon and I am back at square one, barely able to walk…no race for me.  I cannot describe the disappointment I was feeling when I realized that there was just no way I could physically run the race.  I got home and there was Jeff…waiting for me to see how I felt and I just looked at him and cried…and cried…and cried.

I’ve had a few days to process these feelings and have heard from my running and workout buddies to make me feel better.  For some reason I just got it in my head that this was my one and only shot at this…which is crazy.  I don’t even know what I was thinking.  So even though I am not able to run this particular race, I’ve got my sights set on another one in the near future when this body can physically handle it.  It’s a setback but it’s going to lead to my comeback…I just know it.  In the meantime, I’m going to celebrate those long hours of training I DID accomplish – I ran a LOT of miles!  AND, I’m going to be at that finish line tomorrow, waiting for my team to come across it and they’ll have the loudest cheerleader waiting for them.  I know that I will cry some more…I’m a sucker for a runner coming across a finish line.  I am so proud of all they have done to get ready for this race – so many of them injured along the way, too.  But we’re a tough group, so we’ll keep going.  We are runners…it is what we do.

February 16, 2015

My Tips of the Scale Interview

In January, I was approached by Tips of the Scale who asked if I would talk a little bit about my weight loss journey. I was truly honored to be asked even though I wasn't sure what I could offer; most days I feel like I am just fumbling around still trying to figure things out. But if I have learned anything, it is that I will be on this crazy ride for the rest of my life. And even though some days I’m frustrated as Hell…I cannot imagine going back and living the unhealthy life I had; the one that literally weighed on me every minute of every day. I am the happiest, healthiest and strongest I have ever been.
SO, I am beyond scared and nervous and a little bit excited to share that interview with all of you…I mean, I’m putting it all out there. However, if there is another thing that I have discovered on this little jaunt to healthiness, it is that somehow, someway I keep uncovering strength that I never thought existed. If I can help just one person who may be on their own journey, sharing my story is worth it. Don’t give up; don’t ever give up…fight. YOU are worth it.

February 13, 2015

Happy Heart Month!

Hello friends!

So, it’s February, and this month we are celebrating all that is love, right?  Well, for most.

Confession:  my Hubs and I don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day – we’re cool like that…

But we DO celebrate all things love on every other day of the year…shouldn’t everyone??  I guess February 14th is as great a day as any to remember to love each other.  So, to all of you out there, Happy Extra Special Love Day!

Guess what else is celebrated in February?

By now most everyone knows that cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the number one killer in the United States.  The American Heart Association reports that globally, 17.3 million deaths per year are due to CVD and estimates this number to grow to 23+million by 2030.  In 2008, the U.S. lost over 780,000 people to CVD-related diseases like strokes; that’s 2,100+ deaths per day.  These estimates are staggering.   CVD includes heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure. 
The scariest part of CVD is that most of these cases can be prevented.  No matter how many times we have heard it, it never hurts to hear it again.  Here are some KEY factors to avoid CVD or improve your chances of getting better even if you aren’t doing anything now.  You don’t even have to do all of these things.  Even adopting a few of them will help:

Recall Center

Many of you know that when I was at my heaviest, my cholesterol and blood sugar were very high…high enough for me to need to be on medication to lower them.  I have lost 85lbs from my highest weight and I am proud to say that halfway to this point, I was able to stop taking blood sugar medicine.  I am also on the lowest dose of cholesterol medicine with hopes to be able to come off of it very soon.  Not only does diet and exercise come into play but so do genetics…and that’s something to consider, too.  My family has a history of high cholesterol so I have to be very careful.  If you have a family history of heart disease or any CVD-related illnesses, chances are you’re genetically pre-disposed.  Through eating healthy and getting active, I was able to lose weight.  The rest of the positive effects have followed.  I will continue to try to manage my cholesterol for the rest of my life, but I would prefer to do it without medicine which means that I have to eat right and be active.

One bit of advice that I found very enlightening was that people in the 30’s and 40’s cannot think that they are not at risk; youth does not offer you extra time not to worry about disease.  Unfortunately, studies are showing that younger people are developing early signs of CVD.  Take care of yourself now, no matter your age.

For more information about heart disease, check out The American Heart Association’s website.