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Yikes!  I have waited too long to blog!  It’s only because my schedule has been all over the place. Now it’s time to catch up!  I would say June is the month of change.  It’s the month where I started my official training schedule.  I run about three times during the week and run my long run on Sundays.  The fall I had early in June delayed me a little. I might have skipped about two runs during the week day but I did not skip my long Sunday run, which is the most important run of the week!

June has been a big success. I noticed improvements with my body.  I get less tired during my runs and I’ve been able to run uphills!  There are still a few which kill me but overall I think I can manage a few uphills.  For June, my longest run that I achieved was eight miles.  It was a great 8-mile run because my friend Carmen waited for me with her two daughters at the 4 mile mark with some water. I surprised myself on how steady I was the whole time. It only took me 1 hour and 24 minutes to run 8 miles.  I was pretty pleased at myself! However, now that I’m running longer, there are some consequences to that.

After my 8 mile I discovered a painful red rash under my breasts.  I got so scared! William explained to me that it’s chafing from the clothes and skin.  All runners experience this.  I went to a woman marathoner for advice on this one because William does not have the boobies that I do.  The woman marathoner told me that most women get this.  There is no perfect sports bra for this but things that will help according to her is to put vaseline (click here to listen to the vaseline song) in those locations that will rub a lot. Also the tighter the breasts are in the sports bra, the less movement.  I started putting vaseline under my breasts and wearing tight tank tops with the sports bra until I get better clothes. So now I’m showing more cleavage that I wanted to but oh well, I have to protect the twins!

My body has also been changing. I told William that I feel like a cocoon. I’ve been trapped in this cocoon for a few years and now I have began my metamorphosis with my training.  My fingernails have been growing fast and firm. They are unbreakable!  My legs definitely feel stronger and tight.  My belly does not stick out as much or does not look bloated.  I’ve been breaking out on my face a lot. There’s been zits all over the face!  It must be the sweat or possibly my body is releasing lot of toxins.  So release the toxins!  I’m also hungry all the time. I eat about every two hours and sometimes I can’t keep up with myself. The great thing is that William bought us a grill. I’ve been grilling everything that we eat!  Chicken, tilapia, vegetables…it’s all delicious and healthy!  I’m still about the same weight at 170 lbs but I does not matter. I can feel the changes each day.

I also bought new running shoes.  It was time to switch them out and get new selections that I will be using for the marathon. I met William at the store to go shoe shopping. He was very helpful and laid out about six different pairs of shoes for me at DSW.  I tried each pair and walked around in them.  I ended going with the same shoes I bought in January but the most recent version without realizing this!  This must tell me something.  The shoes I have are Asics Gels for women.  They have been the most comfortable for my running. I’m glad to say that I have not had any issues with my running shoes.

Overall for June, I feel that this has been the turning point of my training. For the first five months of this year, I was trying to get my body used to run steady and to learn how to run.  June hit and I feel it’s stage two: The Metamorphosis month.  My body has reacted to my running and it is transforming each day.

Running here I come!

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May was finally better for me. I felt I was running more consistent than before.  It’s the month I added some hikes to build endurance and something different.  I was also trying to add more healthy meals to my diet. At one point I even started to count my calories to make sure I was not being a pig. Because as a reminder to all, I work in a restaurant and I’m around food all day!  So I downloaded this app that would help me track my calories.  I was trying to eat smaller meals and more meals a day. It worked for about a week and then I got tired of researching how many calories each meal has. It takes forever!!! My goal in all of this was to eat healthy while I’m running so much.  I want to maintain the energy I need for my runs.  I hear too many different things on what to eat.  “Eliminate your sugar and dairy,” “Don’t eat too many carbs” “High on protein, lean on fats” “Carbs are good, they are your energy,” “Don’t eat fruit” “Eat fruit, it’s natural and healthy.”  At the end of the day, there are many different ways to eat and I still don’t know what’s the best for me.  So what I’m going to do moving forward is to stop listening to all of these other diets and maintain a balance diet as best as I can. This means that I will allow a little bit of everything in small portions. For the most part I will stick to my basics. Here are some examples:

  • Breakfast options: either oatmeal, protein shake, or scrambled eggs with vegetables
  • Lunch:  either homemade chicken meal, tuna sandwich, or salmon meal
  • Dinner:  either protein shake, small sandwich, small meal on whatever I cook
  • Snacks:  apples, zucchini hummus, nuts, seasonal fruit, chocolate silk soy milk

When I cook, I think it’s pretty healthy. I always buy organic meat, buy the gluten-free pasta, lots of green vegetables, and I also use a lot of spices to flavor the meals.  I just have to make sure I don’t stuff myself and stop when before I get too full.

Going back to my runs for May, I ran about a total of 60 miles.  My longest run was a 6.5 run and my longest hike was about 10 miles when I hiked Mt. Baldy.  My average run was about five miles. I wanted to make my minimum run six miles but there were days where I wanted to get home and do other things and did not have the time to make my run longer.  The above chart is a snapshot of my runs for May through Nike Fitness. There are some runs that are not recorded because I forgot to take my iNano with me when I ran, but I do remember which runs they were.  Overall I’m pretty happy that I was able to get my runs in May.  At the end of the month, I still got worried because I realized how close September is and I’m still only at about 6 miles.  I started to panic because it seems that I will not get to my goal of 13 miles in July!  Gotta keep trying!!!

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A little late on my analysis but not forgotten. I would say that April is the month where I began to push myself more and actually had more time to do things.  My weight stayed the same at 171 lbs but I feel that my running has improved. This was the month where I was able to add hills to my runs. Most of my runs have been around my neighborhood where the streets are uneven and on hills.  This should help because I need to build the endurance to last the hills of the Maui Marathon.  I was also able to accomplish my first race of my training, the Merrel Down and Dirty which was close to 6 miles in Castaic Lake.  I was racing up hills and different obstacles.

I have also had more time to cook and eat healthier meals than the previous months.  It  has not been consistent but I feel that I was drinking more shakes and eating healthier meals.  I need to make sure that my diet is consistent and the right one for a runner in training.

I think I had said in a previous post that my goal was to run 13 miles by June. Given my history of training, I think I’m better off moving that goal to July.  I have to be realistic and acknowledge that I do not always have the time to run about 5 times a week so I’d rather give myself one more month to conquer that goal.  I am trying to run longer runs when I can and I am confident that I will be able to run 13 miles by July, which is also the month that I should be ready for Tough Mudder!!!

May posts to come soon!

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So it didn’t really get better after my last post.  As you can see, it’s been over a month and I’m finally blogging! I started behind in March and did not make a lot of time to run in the beginning of the month. My diet was not consistent nor my exercise.  It’s the typical reason as usual. Too much time at work and not enough energy to run.  I started to worry on how it was going to affect my body. I figured that once I started running again, I had to start all over.  So when I finally began, I began with a new motivation. I bought an iNano to see if it would help me focus on the running.  I also wanted something to track my running and the cool little electric nano has the Nike Fitness application.  My first run was on March 20th (like I said earlier, I was very behind).  I didn’t have any music yet in my nano.  I only timed myself and measured my distance.  My first run was not as bad as I thought it would be. I ran about half an hour with some stopping here and there but managed to not run out of breath so easily.  It felt good to run again and I pushed myself not to stop so easily.  It was a nice little run to start with. The next run I did was on the 22nd and ran for another 3o minutes.  The runs were good and I was managing to run about four miles.  The problem that I still was not running a lot. I was only averaging about 2 to 3 runs a week.

I ended the end of March weighting about the same as the prior month.  My finishing weight was 171.2 lbs.  Not good enough. I know it’s not about my weight but more of what I’m doing.  But I also know that I have not made much progress.

Starting April, William started running with me.  Keep in mind that he just finished his third Los Angeles Marathon.  He needed time to recover and was not running with me when I started in March.  We started running right after work down York Blvd. Two miles there and two miles back.  However it’s been a challenge for me because as soon as I hit about one mile of running, I have to go to the bathroom! I’ve blogged about this before but it’s getting very frustrating now because it’s a very uncomfortable feeling and I’m having to stop at McDonald’s to go to the bathroom.  We just finished the first week of April and I’m only running about four miles. I need to step it up and be more aggressive or else I’m never going to keep up!

So what I have done is that William has signed us up for the Merrel Down and Dirty taking place this coming Sunday the 15th at Castaic Lake.  It is 10 kilometers of pure hell for me because I’m going to be running hills!  Something I have not worked on.  Just this morning I went to meet with a friend for a hike. So to practice, I rode my bicycle to her house. I did not realized that she lived up a hills so I was pedaling and sweating for the last two miles to her.  Once I got there we took a hike around her hill and it felt great.  This week I plan to continue running and change my route to where there are more hills.

I’m also going to be blogging more.  I’ve noticed that it helps to write and track my challenges for the whole world to see.

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I haven’t been able to do much blogging. It’s been one of those months. I started the month off strong but at the end of the month I got a little behind. I was running about 3-4 times a week but I was getting out of work late and was not able to get to the Internet to blog.  I don’t have Internet at home so that’s why I have to drive to places to post my blogs.  I need to get better at my posts so I don’t forget my runs!

I also left to a work conference in Las Vegas at the end of February for four days.  There I was eating three times a day, and usually full meals. This was something that I wasn’t used to. Typically my meals have been a shake in the morning, solid food for lunch, and a light meal for dinner or sometimes another shake for dinner. At the conference I was having waffles, or a hearty egg meal for breakfast, full lunch, and late dinners. Not good!  Delicious, but not good.  My last day at the conference was February 29th.  When I weighed myself on March 1st, I was 173.6 lbs.  I gained some weight back.  I know it’s mostly from Vegas.  And to make things worst, I have been sick since I’ve been back. It started with nausea, chills, and aches. I first thought it was food poisoning but then I started feeling it in my chest and started to cough a lot.  On Friday morning, my whole body was aching. I went to work and only lasted about an hour. I went home and stayed in bed the whole day.  By the evening I was able to eat wheat toast and sliced bananas.  This morning I woke up with a cold and my head is congested. I can’t wait to get better!

Before the conference, I was getting a little behind on my running. I felt I was not running enough. I now have the urge to run every day to catch up.  It’s March and I need to be running consistently each day.  Hopefully by Monday this all goes away.

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January went by very quickly and I now have to report my first month’s progress:

I started the year with a weight of 178 lbs, 38.5 inch waist, and no exercise. My first run was about 2 miles total.

Now after one month, this is what I have accomplished:

Physical:

New weight is 169 lbs.  New waistline is 37 inches.  I can definitely feel my work pants being very loose.

Runs:

I can run about 4 miles with a few walk breaks.  The farthest distance I tried to run was to Runyon Canyon to the entrance. So total distance was about 8 miles.

Strength:

I can run without stopping about 2 to 3 miles.

Diet:

I did the detox diet for two weeks. For the rest of the two weeks, I continued to eat healthy for the most part. I added dairy to the diet and eating egg whites in the morning with vegetables. I try to end the night with a light meal.

Overall summary:

With all the work challenges that I had, I feel pretty happy to accomplish making a run as far as to Runyon Canyon.  I did not think I was going to accomplish that the first month.  I’m happy to be back in the 160 weight and not feel my pants so tight. I lost a total of nine pounds. I’m not too focused on the weight, I just want to be able to fit into my wardrobe and not limit my outfits to about four! I have so much clothes that I have not been able to fit in the last year.

Goals for February:

I would like to continue to reduce the waistline so I fit into more of my clothes.  I want to be able to run (not walk) all the way to Runyon Canyon in February. I need to be able to run a complete a hill without stopping because I know there will be a lot of hills in Maui.  Finally, I want to change my diet slightly and add foods that will give me the energy and strength to continue to exercise. I noticed that I’m not getting hungrier throughout the day. I’m hungry every hour!

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I started my diet and training yesterday, January 1, 2012. The first thing I did was weighed myself. I’m going to do a monthly analysis after each month to see the progress I’ve made. I’m going to be looking on how my weight and body changes. My goal is not to get to a certain weight. Ideally I would like to be at 150 lbs or so. However I know that once I start weight lifting, my muscle weight is going to increase. I’m also going to be looking on how far I can run after each month I finish.
So my physical facts: I’m 5 feet and 10.5 inches. My waist (measured my belly) is at 38.5 inches. My weight is at a whooping 178 pounds! Yikes! I’ve never been this heavy! My ideal weight (according to internet charts) should be in the 150s. I know this weight had a lot to do on how I ate the last quarter of the year. It’s also the busiest quarter of my job. This means I typically work anywhere from 10 to 12 hours in a day, sometimes 14 hours if I’m working a large event. On weeks like these, I’m tired and I don’t have time to cook. I eat what I can grab which usually consists food with bread, butter, and beef. The three forbidden Bs. When I had time to eat out, William and I were not picking the healthiest choices. We were eating pastas, hamburgers, pastrami sandwiches, Mexican food, chips, etc.
The advantage of me being tall is that I can hide it for a while. When I increase my weight, the fat equally is staggered to my butt, stomach, the boobies, and the chin. It all does not go to one place. I feel it the most on my clothes. It’s hard to fit into anything right now. I can’t wear any of my button shirts, I have to wear my “big” pants to avoid the muffin top look, and I can’t look down without making two chins.
I was disappointed in myself because I was in a healthier condition over the summer when I did the Clean diet and I was physically active with different things. I remember I was walking a lot, I had done the Orange County 5k, I hiked the Sleeping Bear Dunes in Michigan, I was biking, and cooking healthy.  Now I’m on the other side of the fence and it sucks.
After I weighed myself I went to buy some groceries and started cooking. When I follow the Clean diet, I take a lot of time in the kitchen. To be healthy, I have to make everything from scratch. I do not mind it at all because I love to cook. So what I try to do is to cook a lot of meals in 1-2 days so I have food for the week and that way I do not fall behind on my diet. I started with this holiday clean recipe that Alejandro Junger (the author of Clean) posted on his facebook page. It was a chicken meal that consisted of thyme, garlic, mushrooms, leeks, and balsamic vinegar. I made some wild rice with almonds to go with the meal. It was so delicious! I also made some quinoa salad to snack on between meals. The quinoa salad has currants, raw almonds, parsley, mint, green onions, olive oil, lime juice, and ground cumin. It’s a perfect snack and quinoa is high on protein. I also made some zucchini soup to have as a meal.
After I finished my meals I went with William for our first official run of the year. William made goals to accomplish for us. Our weekday goal runs will be to run to Runyon Canyon, all the way to the top from his apartment. It’s 5 miles away from his apartment and a lot of hills! We also have to run back to his house. So that’s about 10 miles total for the weekday goal. Our weekend goal run will be to run from his apartment to Santa Monica Beach, which is 9 miles away from his apartment. We then run another 4 miles in the sand to Marina del Rey, and then run back to his apartment. This is what I have to accomplish in 8 months! So we started our first run and ran a loop around my house. The residential area around my house has a lot of hills. It was really difficult for me. I was out of breath for a while and my legs started to hurt. My leg bones felt so week! I had to stop at the midpoint (1 mile) and stretch my legs out. Afterwards, a while later I decided to sprint for a while. I had a boost of energy out of nowhere. My leg pains continued but we made it home. I ran about two miles. It was painful and embarrassing that I cannot run two miles. Two little miles out of the 26 I have to run in September!
First day of diet and training finished.

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