Weigh In Wednesday: Two-Week WW check-in

I forgot to blog about it last week, but I lost 2.8 lbs in my first week back on Weight Watchers (online program). I tracked every day and never used my activity points!

This week wasn’t as good. I didn’t track Saturday-Tuesday. I’ve been dealing with some GI issues (I won’t gross you out with the details, but if it keeps up I’ll be seeing the doctor).

So, I lost .2 lbs this week, for a total of 3 lbs since re-joining Weight Watchers.

I have a crazy weekend ahead – work holiday party – and will likely be using up a lot of my extra P+. The following weekend is the Super Bowl and my Green Bay Packers are playing in it, so I foresee that being a rough weekend as well. I will just have to plan accordingly earlier in the week and make sure to get my exercise in!

Race Recap: FitMKE Indoor Marathon Relay

Miles: 4.3 Time: 57:22 Pace: 13:20

You guysssss. Look at my pace! I have never, ever had that kind of pace for anything longer than a mile. I’m still smiling BIG about this! First of all, I had the best team evar. Agustin J S. Emily K.(my sis) & Jessica G. = FitMKE: Fartleks. We had awesome white sweatbands with our team name on them (which actually made it easier to spot each other on the track). For those of you not familiar, the Indoor Marathon Relay consisted of 104 teams of 3-4 people each who combined had to run 26.2 miles around a track at the Pettit National Ice Center in Milwaukee, Wis. Each lap was .275 miles and teams could decide how to split the laps. Our philosophy was “run til you don’t want to/can’t run any more” and then we’d switch runners.

Going into the race, I was nervous. I just started running again at the end of December and I’ve been doing a run/walk interval in training because I am recovering from some injuries and trying to build up my stamina again – stupid asthma. I felt good but wanted to be smart and only did about 4.25 laps the first leg… then I did 8… followed by 3. Thanks to my awesome teammates for picking up some extra mileage as my foot/lungs couldn’t have accomplished much more than what I did. It’s cold at the Pettit (duh, ice rinks) and my lungs were burning. Major thanks to Katy who on two occasions slowed down her pace to run with me. She pushed me to run 3.5 laps without stopping to walk. That’s the farthest I’ve run without walking since the summer!!! (again, thanks injuries).

It was such a great experience and I’m so lucky to have been there with all my running and #fitmke and Team Challenge friends. Today I felt so blessed and lucky to have you all in my life. You cheered for me, pushed me, slapped my ass while running past (thanks Krista), and kept me motivated to kick ass. I want to tag you all but I know I’ll leave someone out, so just know you all rocked my world today. Before we started the race, I estimated our team would finish in about 5 hours. Our official time was 5:04:45, for a team pace of 11:39.

Oh, and to the 12 year old girl who passed me on one of my laps, I apologize for saying “f*ck you” and flipping you off with both hands. I’m pretty sure you didn’t hear me but, you know, just in case you did, my apologies.

Splits: 16:02 (1.16mi) 29:06 (2.2mi) 12:14 (.825mi)

A vegetarian update and other stuff

A lot has happened in the last week or so. I hit the halfway point in my 31 day vegetarian challenge, I joined a Ragnar Madison-Chicago 200 mile Relay Team and I signed up for Weight Watchers Online (again).

Day 5: Field Roast Fajitas

The vegetarian challenge has been going well. I haven’t been keeping up with my daily photos/recipes (there’s quite the backlog). But, I have been eating fabulously. I’ve only slipped up twice and they weren’t on purpose. One was because I was an idiot (who knew Chicken in a Biscuit crackers actually had chicken in them?) and one was at a party – I had some dip and realized after the first bite that there was bacon in it. Of course, my sister taunted me last week with a huge juicy medium-rare steak. And I almost took the steak knife and stabbed her with it. But I refrained. Because I love her. And I don’t want to go to jail over a steak.

I saw Hood to Coast with my running friends last week and it made me realize that yes, I DO want to do the Madison to Chicago relay. Clearly, I’m insane. But so are they. And I <3 them.

As you may know, I’ve been on and off the Weight Watchers program for years. I first joined in 2005 and was most recently a member in 2008 or 2009. I have been hesitant to re-join as I found the old Points program didn’t value fruits and “REAL” food the way I do. I felt it rewarded processed and highly-preserved food. But, ever since Weight Watchers announced the new Points Plus program, I have been intrigued. It holds fruits in a much higher regard and takes into account NOT calories, BUT fat, protein, carbohydrate and fiber content. That’s right… NO CALORIES INVOLVED. I’ve followed some blogs like Bitch Cakes and others who have really taken to the new program and figured, what the hell, I’ll try it again. Oh, and let’s not forget about my neighbor, Esther, who’s in a national commercial for WW!

I’m not going to weekly meetings, but instead relying on the online program and a support system made up of some lovely Tweeps like Sue! We’ve created a private FB support group. If you’d like to join our group, send me an e-mail! It’s been nice for my first few days especially to have a support system I can go to without 1) annoying my twitter followers 2) annoying my fb friends 3) annoying everyone around me. 😉

So that’s what’s going on with me. What’s new with you?

Decisions are hard

It would be so much easier to let someone else make decisions for me. Decisions are hard. Sometimes I have deep heart-to-hearts with myself. Sometimes I talk things out with a friend. I always pray for guidance. But no matter how you go about it, actually pulling the trigger on a decision is scary!

And so, I sit here at a cross roads.

Do I do it? Do I give up on it all together? Do I put it off?

And after a lot of soul searching, praying and talking things out with a close friend, I’ve made a decision. I’ve said it out loud and I’m surprisingly at peace with my decision.

And yet, I’m still hesitating pulling the trigger and making it public to family, friends and the Internets.

Here goes.

I have decided not to do the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon this year.

I’m just not where I want to be physically, to even consider doing a marathon in less than 10 months. It would be different if I wasn’t 80lbs overweight. It would be different if I wasn’t just now building myself back up to running a 5k distance without stopping to walk. It would be different if I wasn’t recovering from a nasty bout with plantar fasciitis and dealing with a pesky knee that decided to start acting up this week. It would be different if I had been injury-free for the past year and ran the two half-marathons and countless 5ks I registered for.

The deck has been stacked against me. And I’ve got to play with the hand I’ve been dealt.

There is a very good chance that when I do run Lakefront, that it will be the only marathon I ever do. I don’t want to half-ass it. I want to run the hell out of that race. I don’t want to be satisfied with finishing before they close the course. I want to have a time goal and I want to beat it. I want to be smart. I want to train smart so I can run smart.

So I’m giving myself another year. Honestly, the thought of doing Lakefront was starting to give me stomach problems and panic attacks. If I was closer to my goal weight, I wouldn’t be doing this. I know that even at my current size, if I followed a training plan, I could do the race. I just don’t think it would be a good experience. The toll running that far during training would take on my body – my knees, ankles and feet especially – could possibly affect future fitness goals. I need to drop more weight before I should train for something as big as a marathon.

So, 2011 will be a year focused on having fun, working hard and losing weight. Oh, and there’ll be a couple of half marathons and maybe an extreme/adventure race thrown in there.

And, as long as there isn’t an apocalypse, I’ll run the Milwaukee Lakefront Marathon in 2012.

Weigh-In Wednesday: Welcome Back

I’m gonna be honest with y’all. I don’t even know what I weigh right now. My scale is whacked out. I always weigh myself 3 times just to make sure I’m not standing on it weird or anything (I weigh myself right when I wake up so I’m a zombie).

Well, today I had to weigh myself about 10 times because I kept getting such drastically different numbers. They ranged from 250.8 to 258.6. We’re gonna go with 256 for our purposes today. Mostly because the 255-258 numbers came up most often.

So, there you have it. I’ve gained about 10 pounds since August, but only a couple of them came in December, so when you think about it, I handled the holidays pretty well.

But, it’s time to fix what I undid this fall.

I am not upset by the weight gain, but am using it as motivation to kick ass this month in training and with my 31-day vegetarian challenge.

Speaking of which, things were going swimmingly until today. Mid-day I began to CRAVE a juicy hamburger with bacon. And BBQ. And Cheddar.

OMG are you salivating?

I got through the craving and tonight I made fajitas!

Day 5: Field Roast Fajitas

Happy hump day everyone. It’s almost over.

Make your own 5k adventure (and PR)

As you may know, The Run into the New Year 5k was supposed to be “Amy’s triumphant return to running.” Earlier this week, I feared it would be “Amy’s not-so-triumphant return to running.” In the end, it became “Amy’s really effed up return to running.”

My wonderful sister Emily K. said she would run this 5k with me, even though I told her she was free to go at her own pace and just find me at the end. She said she wanted to do this with me and that it didn’t matter how long it took, she’d be there with me the whole time. Yeah, I know. *tear*

Em & Me, pre race

We started off near the back of the pack and, well, we stayed there (hello, slow running FTW). My goal was to do intervals, but listen to my foot and lungs to determine how those intervals would be. We ran the first quarter mile in less than 3 min, which was pretty fast for me, especially for the start of a race where I didn’t know how my body would handle it. We did some running, then some walking, then some running… passed the 1 mi marker at just over 14 min, which is a great time for me – normally my run/walk pace is in the 16-17 range. My lungs were burning, my foot was starting to act up but Em kept pushing me on and encouraging me along the way.

My sister, looking too beautiful to be running. WTF

We turned the corner after going around the race track and were headed down the hill toward the start/finish line… and got very confused. The race was a 10k and a 5k and they had the first loop of the course going past the start/finish point around mile 1.2. The fast 10k-ers were coming around at this point and all the course marshalls seemed more focused on directing them than helping us. We asked someone at the water table where we were supposed to go and they blew us off.

No, YOU look crazy when you run.

It sucked because the people who were only running were far enough ahead we couldn’t see them and the walkers were far enough behind we didn’t want to wait for them to find out where to go so we just continued on south just like we did at the start of the race. We started to get worried that we missed a turn or something and I looked over and saw runners about a block away. So we cut across the street to figure out where in the hell we were. Realized we were about a third of a mile from the finish so we looped back with some other runners. Knowing full well that if we finished with this crowd, our time would be a sub-30 (more like a sub-25), we did the same quarter mile loop three times, cutting across the group of runners like a couple of fools. We saw some friends pass us who gave us looks like “how in the HELL did you pass me”… we laughed and said we’d explain later, as we took another walking break.

We got so confused it was laughable. Eventually we started to goof off and take silly pictures. We knew we would be close to the 5k mark, depending on what the last leg of the race was so after the 3rd li’l loop we headed to the finish. As we rounded the corner for the final straightaway, we made sure we were running so everyone would think we had ran the whole time (duh, we’re so smart)… and came down to the finish with a flurry. I heard some friends cheer and I’m sure they couldn’t figure out how we finished in 40 min. After we got the timing chips off our feet my friend Rochelle came and hugged us and congratulated us on an awesome time. I couldn’t stop laughing and shoved my garmin in her face… I said, “look look at the distance!” “2.62 mi? what happened?” And so we had this fun story to share with everyone as we found them post race. It was a Make-your-own 5k… complete with a choose-your-adventure option.

yay! we did it!

Afterwards we had beer and caught up with some friends.

Then we headed over to Paulie’s on Greenfield with a few people for post-race libations… Em and I had the nachos and quesadillas… and a lot of beer.

Photo: Kay

Then, we went home and decided we had to fit in the rest of the 5k we missed earlier… so we ran on a full stomach of beer and nachos a quarter mile from home and back. We had to stop to walk so many times because we thought we were gonna puke… but we did it, even sprinting the last .1 like we were sprinting to the finish line. Then I really almost puked.

Good times, great people. Happy freaking new year.

Splits: 14:10, 16:47*, 14:49 (.62), 14:32 (.48)

*this is where all the race confusion was, as evidenced by the time

Oh and PS: This was a PR for me, even with the disaster of a race!

31 Day Vegetarian

In an effort to keep me more honest about what I’m shoving into my face, I decided that for all of January, I would become a vegetarian. I’ve flirted with the idea before, but could never get over the fact that to be a vegetarian, you can’t eat meat. Like, EVER. And, well, I love me some meat. I just don’t eat it very often. And, when I do eat meat, I make every attempt to ensure it comes from a good home (i.e. cage free/hormone free/antibiotic free/free roaming/grass-fed/etc). I don’t buy chicken or beef from the big companies you would typically associate with those foods, mostly because of how the animals are treated. Generally, when I buy beef, pork or chicken, I purchase it at a farmer’s market, Whole Foods or Outpost – places where I know where the meat came from. I wasn’t always like this, but then I started doing some research and of course, watching films like Food, Inc. solidified this choice for me.

So, here I am. Day #1 of vegetarianism. So far, so good. I almost screwed up, however, at 12:30 this morning while at a New Year’s party. There were bacon-wrapped water chestnuts as an hors d’ouvre and I had been eating them earlier in the night. Luckily, even a slightly intoxicated Amy was able to catch herself before eating it! I’ve been ok so far, but I’m sure that’s because I’m at home and I bought a bunch of vegetarian-friendly foods to aid in the transition to meat-free living.

Happy New Year!

For brunch, I had some leftovers from last night – crackers, beer bread and pizza dip.

For dinner, I had the veggie pizza you see below. MMMMMM (do you see a pattern here? Obviously, pizza is my weakness).

Day 1: Veggie pizza on Naan Bread

Day 1: Veggie pizza on Naan Bread by amykant

Here’s the recipe for my Veggie Pizza on Naan Bread:

Ingredients:
  • Whole Wheat Naan bread, pitas, tortillas or pizza crust
  • Veggies
  • Tomato paste
  • Cheese (I used fresh mozzarella and a little bit of a cheddar jack blend)
Preheat the oven to 400F.
Place crust on pizza stone, cookie sheet or pizza pan. Put a couple of spoonfuls of tomato paste on the crust and spread around. Top with veggies. I used spinach, carrots, broccoli and tomatoes. Then I sliced up the fresh mozzarella (about 3 small balls) and placed on the pizza. I topped with a sprinkle of the shredded cheese blend and baked in the oven for 10-15min (until cheese begins to brown).
I’ve done so many variations on this in the past. One of my favorite veggie mixes to use is broccoli slaw. MMMMM.
I won’t be posting blogs every day with updates, but my plan is to tweet using the hashtag #31daysofveg and to post pictures daily to Flickr. I’ll do a wrap-up post each week here, but if you’re interested in my daily adventures with vegetarianism, you’ll wanna follow my Twitter feed and check up on Flickr.