Six Month Progress Report :)

It’s been about six months since I pulled myself off of the couch and decided to get my shit together, so let’s have a little re-cap!

I decided to start running in October 2011 to finish my first 5k, and then I signed up for a 10 month series of races to keep myself motivated through the winter and spring.  The miles have been adding up ever since!  More on that stuff later, but first, here’s what’s been happening in the last month:

I use the website dailymile.com to track my workouts and to connect with people off of facebook who actually want to hear about the leg cramp I had at the top of the hill on mile 5. They have a lot of colorful graphs and charts that break down your training by week or month, and it was pretty cool to see the difference between where I was in February compared to March.  I run with my Android phone (that sounds so awesome!  Why isn’t it more awesome in real life?), and I switched from using Cardiotrainer to Runtastic as my GPS app sometime in the beginning of March.  I like Runtastic so far, but the website hasn’t been super helpful in showing me how to email or download my training graphs…so we’re going old school today folks.   I sure wish I could show you, but that Fred Pryor Excel class I took is not paying off.  I still can’t figure out how to import a graph.  Whatever.

Here is a lovely bit of information I was able to copy over from Daily mile, but keep in mind that this is a cumulative total starting from November 2011:

284.21 Total Miles

62.09 Total Time

16 Lbs Burned

82 Total Workouts

0.01 Around World

54.68 TVs Powered

14.96 Gas Saved

307.93 Donuts Burned

Did you notice number 3, there?  16 pounds burned?  Yeah, I’m not living in that reality.  Although it could have something to do with the fact that I’m hitting some Dove chocolates right now and I put away some potato chips while standing at the kitchen counter last night…

But this is the coolest thing I found on all my graphs and collected data:

In February I ran a total of 31 miles, with my longest run being 4.64 miles on 2/24.

In March I ran a total of 83 miles, with my longest run being 8.89 miles on 3/24!  Holy shit!

That’s a big deal to me.  I know that there are tons of people out there who can run faster and longer, who are leaner and more muscled, but I’m pretty happy to see that in one month I increased my total miles by 52 and I more than doubled my long run of the week!  Suck it, old non-believing, non-running self!

So looking at that 9 mile long run, here are the per mile stats.  I was really happy to see that even though we have some killer hills out here, I managed to keep my average pace under 12 minutes  (aside from my first warm-up mile)  and even got under the 11 min mark for a lot of those miles.  That’s big news, people!  I am generally slow, and on normal days I am lucky to keep my average pace somewhere around 12 min/mile.  So to see some 10:30’s in there, especially at mile 7, made me feel really proud of myself!  And also super proud of the person who invented gels.  Thanks, gel-inventor!  Taking your product at mile 5 made a big-ass difference in my run!

Distance Pace Speed Avg. Duration Elevation gain Elevation loss
1 mi 12:36 min/mi 4.76 mph 13:03 242 ft 177 ft
2 mi 11:46 min/mi 5.09 mph 24:35 137 ft 170 ft
3 mi 11:27 min/mi 5.23 mph 36:18 144 ft 108 ft
4 mi 12:36 min/mi 4.76 mph 48:54 141 ft 177 ft
5 mi 10:42 min/mi 5.61 mph 59:40 177 ft 223 ft
6 mi 11:14 min/mi 5.34 mph 1:10:34 180 ft 183 ft
7 mi 10:36 min/mi 5.65 mph 1:21:08 206 ft 183 ft
8 mi 11:10 min/mi 5.37 mph 1:32:56 150 ft 157 ft
8.82 mi 10:46 min/mi 5.57 mph 1:41:02 154 ft 150 ft

I remember last October, when I was signed up to run my very first race, a Twin Cities 5k.  I was super nervous – like no ability to sleep, worried about looking like a ding-dong in front of crowds of people nervous.  I finished the race, and I was exhausted.  I went home and crashed like I had just finished some serious GI Jane type shit, full on couch-nap style.

Shortly after that race, I remember seeing on facebook that my sister-in-law had just finished a 7 mile run.  I was totally amazed!  How do people do that? I wondered.  There was no way in hell I would ever be able to go that far and then actually have the energy to type about it.  I remember listing in my head all the reason that she could do it and I couldn’t:

              She’s smaller than me

             She has more time and no kids

and the biggest excuse of all…

             some people are just made to run and some are not.  I’m not.

It seemed like something that wouldn’t happen in years and years, and I would have to lose all my extra weight and become a vegan to do it.  Well, it turns out it took about 6 months, I haven’t nearly lost all my extra weight (still lugging around about 30 extra pounds), and the disappearing turkey lunch meat and cottage cheese speaks to my vegan status.  After all that self-doubt, it turns out that:

SOME SHIT JUST TAKES TIME

and:

I NEED TO GIVE MYSELF SOME SPACE, FOR F’S SAKE

Okay!  So we’ve figured out I had to learn to cut myself some slack and become the biggest supporter of my own things.  Check.

So let’s get to the “real” stuff, the physical changes. :)

Let me start by saying this:  I have a picture here from a year and a half ago in December.  I am at a cookie baking party.  That should tell you everything you need to know about where I was at during that December.

Hoo Boy. I just don't have the words.

Yikes.

This one is a little less…intense, but still, I’m all thighs and jowls.  This one is about a year later, and I’m a little smaller, but still.  Work to be done.

Aren’t kids taking pictures great?  The best part is that they are shorter than you, so every bit of chub you are trying to hide gets full viewing.

Okay, so at this point I think I comfortably in the 200’s.  Thank god I saw one of my cousins post on facebook that she was going to be signing up for a race series (more on that here) and I gave myself a serious intervention (Thanks, Diana!).

I’ve lost somewhere between 25-30 pounds, but I really try not to weight myself because it sends me on a mind trip that I just can’t deal with.  The real feel good stuff is that my clothes are loose, my fat clothes have been banished to Goodwill, and the “skinny” clothes I was saving in the closet have begun to show themselves in my wardrobe circulation.

Ooh!  Let’s do favorite body changes!

1.  The annoying back roll-thingy that was hanging above my waist is gone!  I can actually wear a tighter shirt without worrying about the activities of the fat behind me.  Good times.

2.  When I sit on a chair, my pelvic bones are making actual contact with a firm surface.  Like, hard chairs can be uncomfortable now.  Good and bad!

3.  I’ve stopped hating my thighs and booty so much.  They are still the biggest parts of me, but now I’m more concerned with the arms I need to tone up.  I look at my booty at Serena-In-Training.  Hey, it spells SIT!  I’m funny.

4.  I’m not super intense about people taking pictures of me anymore.  I actually had a hard time finding those two up there, I had deleted all horrible shots or stayed hidden behind the camera before now.

5.  General body image improvement!  I love that I’m getting strong legs, I love that I don’t feel so self-conscious anymore, I love that I can rely on my brain and body to let me get through 9 miles with only a little complaining.  Love it all!

Somehow I don’t really have any recent full body pictures of myself, I guess I need to work on that.  But these are the ones I have, and I’m not surprised to see that they are all from races or during a run :)…

Me at the Polar dash in January of 2012. My first 10k! Starting to get in better shape...

The Fast Before the Feast run on Thanksgiving this year with my boys. Getting less Jowly!

Me out on a run sometime in March 2012

The most recent pic, me having a celebratory beer after the March Get Lucky race

So, things are looking up.  I have my long run of the week tomorrow, and I’m going to try to get further into mile 9.  I’m not as worried about the half I have in June, I’m pretty sure I’m going to be okay for it!

I’m feeling good, and as long as I stay injury-free, I’m looking forward to all the things to come this summer!  More running, adding in some bike training for a Duathlon in August (run, bike, run) and then more running.  I’m pretty stoked about this six month check in, I hoping the next one will show even more progress!

8 responses to this post.

  1. Wow you look great!! Good for you!!

    Reply

    • Thanks Lala Mama!! Once I can get a handle on my snacking habits, it would be awesome to drop the extra weight :) No fun to fun in the summer heat with extra poundage.
      Thanks for reading!

      Reply

  2. Posted by Michele on April 8, 2012 at 1:15 am

    Your recent pictures look amazingly different, you are doing a great job!! The reminders to not be so hard on yourself are just what I needed today :)

    Reply

  3. Thanks Michele, that means a lot! :) I’m glad it resonated with you, I know that I give myself a really hard time most days, and it’s all so pointless and unnecessary! I hope that we can give ourselves a break more often :)

    Reply

  4. Posted by Anonymous on April 10, 2012 at 2:45 pm

    Hope, you are doing a GREAT job and we are very proud of you for taking on such a major obligation as a series of races that would take you through almost an entire year of goals to reach and training. You have proven that you have the strength and fortitude to take on anything your heart and mind leads you to.

    Reply

  5. Posted by Anonymous on April 10, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    Hope, you are doing a GREAT job and we are very proud of you for taking on such a major obligation as a series of races that would take you through almost an entire year of goals to reach and training. You have proven that you have the strength and fortitude to take on anything your heart and mind leads you to.
    Stephen & Gaelen

    Reply

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