FFTFL premiere

FFTFL premiere

Saturday, August 17, 2013

A New Lease On Life

I can NOT believe it has been four years since the day I decided to start caring about myself again. I spent most of my life, from I'd say the age of 12, on a "diet," times where I restricted what I ate, how much I ate and tried to increase my activity. I'll never forget getting so upset with my mom because she wouldn't buy me Richard Simmons' Deal-A-Meal. I cried and cried, so she broke down and bought it. That was 10th grade, and my Sweatin' to the Oldies tapes were Betamax. Of course she must have known it was only going to work so long as I stuck to it, and up until then, I had never stuck to anything.

June, 1989

I always had the best intentions of losing weight over summer vacation. One summer I didn't eat a single cookie for 6 weeks. I remember actually marking my calendar. It worked and I got a lot of attention at marching band camp that year, (If you don't know by now, I was an extreme geek.), but who can live without COOKIES? The weight came back and then some.

Fast forward to my first year of college where all I had to do was show my meal card and the cafeteria was an endless smorgasbord. The "Freshman Fifteen" became more like "Freshman Forty." I mean, who can pass up on tortilla chips smothered in pumps and pumps of brightly colored orange cheesy goodness? And they had the most amazing selection of cookies the size of your hand and blondies and brownies to wrap in a napkin to take with you to class, because I'm sure I didn't have enough to eat at the actual meal.

The Romero 7

Then I was a bridesmaid at my sister's wedding my sophomore year in 1991and I wanted to lose weight to look nice in my dress, and also because I had asked my brother-in-law's friend Charlie to be my "+1." Just like the dining hall had enough crappy food to clog your carotids, they had just as many healthy selections, plus there was a fantastic gym and indoor and outdoor tracks at my disposal. I would head to the health center every Saturday morning before my shift at the campus center to weigh in (and grab a handful of free condoms, but that's a story for another time). I could count on losing almost 3 pounds every week when I was diligent in my efforts. I did well and got down to a size 16.

This was all going on between January, when I asked Charlie to be my date, and the wedding, which was March 17th. Lo and behold, Charlie and I were writing back and forth and talking on the phone. I would come home for a fitting and I'd see him at my sister's apartment. We became really good friends and things blossomed, and then so did I. It was like I finally got someone to like me and I didn't need to care anymore. While it is extremely lovely that Charlie has never cared about my size, it also wasn't a good thing, either. I didn't care myself.

I was a fat bride. I had a 3 year engagement and it STILL wasn't enough time to lose the weight! I hate looking at my wedding pictures, even though it was one of the best days of my life. I was marrying my best friend and all I can see is how fat I was. It makes me sad, but I can't change it. Charlie looked handsome though in his black tails, though.


We got pregnant three months after we were married and I had both of my kids before our third anniversary. There were many attempts to lose weight through my years as a wife and stay-at-home mom. I updated my Deal-A-Meal and bought Richard's Food Mover and I'd put the kids in the double stroller every day for a walk. Breakfast and lunch seemed to be easy. While preparing dinner, however, I'd start to graze and then by the time the kids went to bed it would become a feeding frenzy. I think I was under the impression that if no one saw me eat it then it didn't happen. Of course the box of Twinkies would be gone and I'd be gaining weight, but I was in denial. Charlie never called me out on it.

And then back in August of 2009 I had that panic attack in the middle of the night that sure did feel like a heart attack when it was happening. Having a visual in my head of my 13 and 11 year old children going to my funeral was what did it for me. I couldn't live the way I had been anymore. So I started cutting back on all of the cookies and cake and ice cream and candy. I stopped eating late at night. I exercised every day. I never expected perfection. I did my best and if I wanted cookies I'd have a couple and tell myself if I wanted more, I could have more, tomorrow.

Y'all know the rest. Sum and substance (I'm on grand jury duty right now and this is officer lingo): I lost about 50 pounds and then it got harder to continue to lose, so I started using My Fitness Pal on 4/1/11. I hit 75 pounds lost on 7/16/11 and managed to get down to as little as 147 on 10/29/11, where I imagine I was there for all of two days until Halloween hit. I have since bounced around the 150's and even dabbled in the 160's for the beginning of 2013. I am very happy to say that I recommitted myself to better training in regards to running and stricter use of MFP continuously throughout the entire day. After beginning the month of June at 165.8, I am very happy with my 4th anniversary weigh-in this morning.

Down 8 pounds since 6/3 and only +3.8 pounds from my 75 pound loss.

I'm working hard at running faster and I'm being honest with myself about what I'm eating and good things are happening. I celebrated my 4th anniversary with a 4 mile treadmill run in 36:41. I'm excited to see where I'll be come August 17th, 2014!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

A Phenomenal Run

No, it wasn't fast by any means. 9 miles in 1:43 averages out to an 11:26 pace. The first 4.6 miles I got done in 48 minutes, (10:44 pace), so the last 4.4 miles took 55 minutes (12:30 pace). But that's not what I'm talking about here. I decided before I even left the house that I was just going to run and enjoy it. I wasn't going to fret over my pace and I was going to stop to hydrate. I even took a 5 minute breather when I arrived at the beach to use the restroom and bask in the glory of the incredible breeze that was blowing through the tunnel I was in.

I ran pretty well going to the beach. It was hot though. Not much of a breeze. I had my tunes playing, my sweat towel and my hydration belt to be as hands-free as possible. I was chewing gum to keep my mouth from getting dry. I HAVE to chew gum on long runs. It's key for me. Turns out their was a dangerous rip current at the beach, though, so no swimming for me. Hehehe...

After the 5 minute respite, I was off and running again. Back over the monster of a bridge. It's a drawbridge where the middle is 22' above the water. It feels like a huge-ass hill when running it. That's all I can say. Doing it the second time on tired legs is even worse. I did enjoy seeing the hundreds of cars crossing the bridge, families going to spend the day at the ocean (little did they know they couldn't go in it!). Jesus was kind to me again on the way home by sending glorious breezes to keep me cool, seeing that I was heading home at 11:30 am. I thanked Him many times. And that was pretty much the difference between this run and almost ALL of my other long runs. I stayed positive. I never once crossed over to Negative Nelly Land. I never once thought "I can't do this." I just frickin' did it and enjoyed my playlist. I had Rob Thomas, Justin Timberlake, Bruno Mars, Macklemore and Fall Out Boys to keep me company. When LP's "Into The Wild" came on I thought about all of my From Fat To Finish Line team mates and how far they've come with their fitness goals. Have I told you how lucky I am to be in their company?

So, you see, it's all about perspective. I'm lucky to be able to run any distance, no matter how slow or fast I go.