Thursday, December 18, 2008

Fabulous, Dahling!

Thanks to PTG who nominated me for the Your Blog Is FABULOUS award. This post is going to be a short one because I'm getting ready to head out of town for the holidays. Don't worry... I'll be posting less, but I will be posting over the next few weeks. I think I'd go crazy without my blog support. So, who do I want to pass this award onto (and mainly give shout outs to)?
1) Kelly over at Choosing Losing: Her motto pretty much sums up what this journey is all about. She's my Miz Fit match buddy, and even though we've both been slacking in the whole communication update department (I blame finals.... I think K does too!), we've been reading each other's blogs and keeping tabs on the other. I'm hoping that now that we have a few weeks, we'll get our emails back in order :)

2) Angie over at Angie Eats Peace: I found Angie's blog through another fitness board that I used to frequent. I love to read her blog about her running, her adventures with her family, and her struggles to eat vegan in a omnivorous world. She makes me wish I lived closer to a Trader Joe's with all her yummy food posts!

3) KK at Running Through Life: The more and more I read her blog, I realize that we both have similar time constraints on our fitness/blogging/me time due to work. I love all the little tidbits that KK's been sharing with us lately by putting up links to fun workouts and advice. Hopefully you'll get some me time over the next few weeks!

4) Jason at Recast in Iron: Jason and I are coworkers, and I was happy to see that he found my blog and has freely given his advice on my running goals/training. It's been really helpful! He is such an inspiration to those of us who are still pushing through our weight loss/fitness goals. I figure if he can train for an Ironman, I.... er, I guess I could too, but I don't think I'm into self-inflicted torture :)

5) RooBabs at Work Those Lower Body Curves: Little does RooBabs know, but I keep her "I'm a Runner" bracelet that she sent me in my desk drawer. It's a little reminder to myself that as I'm pushing through a day of writing and research, I need to take some time for myself and go out and enjoy the day with a little bit of running. Because after all.... I AM a runner :)

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

What Have You Done Today To Make You Feel Proud?

Biggest Loser Spoilers Ahead!! Stop reading now!!!

I have to say: for all the tension and excitement that went into this season, and especially this finale... everything happened according to plan. Well, except Heba's win, but that's another story. Some general comments before I get started. Wow-- did Ali Sweeney pop or what? Even in the last week, I kept thinking to myself, I thought she was prego, she certainly doesn't look all that prego... but tonight she certainly DID look prego!!! Holy cow! What about no one cheering for Vicky's part of the intro? That was hilarious! It was pretty obvious that the crowd was behind Michelle 100%. I think everyone was sick of the negativity that this season generated. At one point, Ali also said that they spent 102 days on the ranch and 122 days at home before the finale. So, basically, the contestants had about seven and a half months to lose this weight. Sure, it's accelerated, but it's not as bad as it is sometimes portrayed.

First thing first: Who was going to be the "third" finalist? Heba or Ed? They both looked fantastic, although I'm going to be a bit catty. I thought Ed looked old. And yes, Heba needed a more supportive bra than the one she was wearing. As someone who now has some saggy boobs due to weight loss, a supportive bra does EVERYTHING for an outfit. The dress looked great, her boobs didn't. Ali tells us with 84% of the vote, ED is the finalist. HAHAHA. I'm so glad that 84% of the voters were in the same mindset at me!

Next, they bring the kicked off families off in order: Adam and Stacey (who looked FABULOUS), LT and Tom (who weren't as heavy as they were... but still looked big), Jerry (AWESOME!!!) and Coleen, Shellay (hot mamma!) and Amy C., Phil and Amy (I'd vote them for best looking couple!), Brady (eh), Renee (looked good, but didn't really like her hair), and of course Heba. I thought the $100K at home prize weigh in was the most interesting! The lead jumped around: first, it was Stacey in the lead, then Jerry, Shellay, and Amy C in quick succession. Philip weighed in and lost 151 pounds. His wife Amy P. weighed in, lost 105 pounds... and captured the lead with a 45.85% loss. At this point, I was like YES!!! I've always liked the Red Team, and I wanted them to stick it to the Four Musketeers BIG TIME. Brady weighed in next, and although he lost 117 pounds, he didn't have the percentage to beat Amy (YES!!!). Renee lost 106 pounds, but also didn't have the percentage to beat Amy. It came down to Heba. She needed to lose 134 pounds to beat Amy... and she lost 138. Grr. So, now I was worried about H&E walking away with $350K.

So, then they brought out the finalists. Of course, they all looked great. Vicky tried to claim that she only lost 2 pounds in seven weeks, with working out four hours a day. YEAH RIGHT. C'mon. We already had seen Ed, so, Vicky came out wearing a great looking dress (although Amy P was still best dressed... that red dress looked HOT on her!). But, she couldn't move in the dress at all. And the stage was super slippery. But (being the evil kikimonster that I am) I was disappointed that we didn't get to see her fall. Bob was such a gentleman that he caught her and walked her to the front of the stage. Then Michelle came out and WOWEE!!! She looked FABULOUS.

Because Michelle had won the last week on campus, she chose the weigh in order: First, Ed, then Vicky, and then Michelle. Ed lost 139 pounds, with a 41.49% weight loss. He held onto first place when Vicky weighed in and lost 101 pounds, with a 41.06% loss. Ali tells us that to win, Michelle needs to lose 100 pounds. Seriously, at this point, I don't know how that girl kept a straight face. Her starting weight was 242 pounds, and looking at her, you KNEW she was under 140, easily. She weighed in at 132, with a total loss of 110 pounds, with a 54.54% loss. MICHELLE WINS!!!! I'm so glad this season ended on a positive note.

Although, I'm curious if we have the same commercials nationwide. Right after Ali cut to commercial, when we were all waiting with baited breath for Michelle's weigh in, NBC ran a Coco Chanel commercial starring none other than Keira Knightley. Yes, that twig of a girl. Seriously, NBC... bad timing? Someone with a bad sense of humor working the commercial desk? I just found it odd. To me, anorexic people aren't inspiring. Sorry Keira.

And what about the new season which starts January 6th? (NBC, I sure hope my check is in the mail for all this free promotion!) They're bringing in the HEAVIEST contestants ever, the OLDEST couple, the HEAVIEST woman, and the HEAVIEST CONTESTANT EVER. PERIOD. I think this is going to be a mess. I think we're going to move from being completely bitter to feeling sorry for all these people. What was up with showing the "oldest" man passing out? I seriously almost cried at that point. Sure, inspiration will be shown, but to me, sometimes, this is just torture. We'll see soon enough!

On a final, personal note, I had a hard time moving today. I was snowed in, and I spent most of the day in front of my computer, stressing over an article that I'm coauthoring with someone who works in the UK. My coauthor and I went back and forth over email for much of the afternoon until I sank into total frustration at the state of this article. I wanted it to be done by the end of the week, and that's just not going to happen. It's like we're so close to being done, but yet, because of the holiday, so far away. So, I didn't work out. However, while I was watching the finale, I couldn't help but get up and MOVE. I ended up doing SparkPeople's 30 Minute holiday workout, which someone (KK? Cammy?) had posted on their blog right before Thanksgiving. IT WAS AWESOME. There are seven exercises that you can do with NO equipment, and you do three circuits with 15 reps of each exercise. I feel great because I moved my body today. That's what I did today to make me feel proud :)

Are You READY to RUMBLE???

The highlight of my day will obviously be the Biggest Loser finale tonight. I am keeping my fingers crossed for Michelle, who is my one and only choice to win. At least last season, I was pulling for Ali and Kelly (both of their before and after pictures are on my fridge!), but this season, it HAS to be Michelle. I can't wait to give you all a rundown tomorrow!

This week has been kind of tough for me, exercise wise. Sunday, I went to spinning for the first time since the beginning of the month. Holy cow! I felt so out of shape it was unbelievable. I made it through class, but my legs felt so heavy while I was spinning. I felt that there was no ease or lightness to my spinning. It felt like work, not something that I enjoyed. Yesterday, I did a HIIT (high intensity interval training) session on the elliptical, where I went full out for 30 seconds and then had a recovery period of 90 seconds. I did a five minute warmup, a 20 minute HIIT session, and then cooled down for another five. It felt great. However, my abs and shoulders are super sore. I think my shoulder is more of a factor from my mattress. Brand new mattress... but I turned it from top to bottom for the first time. So, my little nook is now at my feet, which makes me sad. I also can't find my spot just yet. Grr. I think on this snowy day, I'll be working from home, and working OUT from home. I'll dig some of my favorite videos out and have some fun for 60 minutes. Now, which ones should I choose....

Speaking of choosing, I've decided to do some shoe shopping while I'm home. For you runners out there: Do you buy one pair of sneaks for running and then another for gym workouts? I was thinking that if I do this, my running shoes will last longer, and therefore, I won't have to shell out money for good running shoes more often than not.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Ruffles Galore!

The past three weeks of my life have been like a circus (and yes, Britney, I blame you for putting all your new songs in my head... and myself for adding them all to my workout mix). Between end of the semester grading, finals, and then grading finals, I finally got a chance to breath. E and I went out to dinner tonight. Here's a pic of my infamous Ann Taylor size 12 outfit :) I love the satin pants and the ruffle-y top. And I apologize to my friends who are going to see me wearing this EVERYWHERE this holiday season. Sorry... but it's a great outfit and I love that I look great and FEEL great in it. I'll be back to my regular fitness (soreness) posting tomorrow!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Weekly Weigh In: Weighing In

Sorry for the late weigh in... this week has been killer. I've been doing so much work, trying to play catch up with the semester (not to mention the guilt that comes with taking the next three weeks off) that I didn't weigh in yesterday morning. I also woke up with this horrible sinus headache/migraine that had me laying around the house all day. All in all, it wasn't a good day.

However, this morning was a different experience. Not only did I sleep for 10 hours and woke up with my headache gone, but the scale also told me that I lost a pound this week. WOOT! On Thursday, I had a conversation with one of my work colleagues. We started at the same time, so we've pretty much had the same experience within the department. One thing he complained to me about is that he's gained 20 pounds since he started the job and he racks it up to being unhappy. I had to shrug at him. I gained about 15 pounds my first year on the job, and now, I've lost 50 of those unwanted pounds. His response is that some people lose weight when they are unhappy. I laughed: I wish it had been that easy to blame my divorce and my early dissatisfaction with my job. Unfortunately, a lot of sweat, tears, and frustration has gone into losing those 52.4 pounds.

On a happier note, this week was the first time since HIGH SCHOOL that I have worn a size 12 in public. I know, I know, high school wasn't that long ago for me. But seriously? I think the last time I wore a size 12 was 1996. TWELVE YEARS AGO. E gave me a bag of her dissertation clothes (and a big WOOT to E for fitting into some smaller sized pants this week too!!), which contained a bunch of size 10s but also one pair of size 12s. I figured that since my Ann Taylor shopping spree over Thanksgiving where I bought a pair of size 12s, I might actually wear them in public one day. I figured Wednesday was a good day for that. I can't believe it. I'm sure I walked a little taller that day, just because I knew what number was on my label. Monday night is the debut of the Ann Taylor outfit, which is when E and I are going out for a big end of the semester survival dinner. I'll be sure to take some pictures :)

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Taking Care of Me

Yesterday, I finally made it back to the gym after a full 10 days without it. It's funny how easy it is to slip out of your routine. When I was at home for Thanksgiving, I was more willing to stay snuggled up in my bed rather than get up and go for a run in the morning. Now, getting over my cold, it is so much nicer to stay in my warm house in my sweatpants than to go out in the wet cold weather to drive to the gym and spend 30 minutes on an elliptical. Plus it's finals week. Sure, the students are stressing, but so are the faculty. I have a ton of mini projects that I need to get done before I leave for my break, because, trust me, nothing gets done when I'm at home. So, this morning, I found myself entering data (one of my mini pre-break projects), and wondering when and if I should go to the gym. I'm having dinner with some friends tonight, so yes, I should go work out. But I REALLY should finish this data before my dentist appointment in two and a half hours. However, the data will still be here tonight, where my motivation to put on my sneaks and get to the gym may not be. So, I'm heading off in a few minutes. Gotta take care of me first and then I can focus clearly on my work.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Biggest Loser: VOTE FOR ED

Okay, this is going to be a total BL post, so stop reading (MIZ!) if you've Tivo'ed it.

Can I just say how disappointing last night was? Sure, I was super excited that Michelle kicked ass at the weigh in, that we finally saw Jillian cry (I love her), and that America decides the fate of the final three. However, more and more this season, this has been about playing the game, not making choices that will change the lives of the contestants. For example, take Vicky: Bob asked her what she learned from the whole BL experience. She said, "I learned about exercise and nutrition." And Bob asked again: "What did you learn about YOU?" Vicky: Mmm... nothing. I love when Bob told the Blue Team about the guy who won in the first season (total game player) who has now gained back all his weight. I feel bad for Bob. He has a team of game players, and you can see that it breaks his heart to know that he's working so hard at supporting them, and all they're getting out of it is how to win the game, not how to change their lives. And yes, I think this goes for Heba and Ed too.

So, let's go there: Heba and Ed. They work as a unit, which is good in some respects, but HORRIBLE in others. Heba totally half-assed the challenge because she knew that Ed could win it for both of them. Ed completely threw his weigh-in so that Heba could make the final three, but that turned out not to work anyway. And then their "plea" videos (which you can see here)??? As soon as Ed started talking about how we should all vote for Heba, I got turned off. Ed, don't you want this for yourself? To me, this just shows what a slackass he is (geez, guys, sorry for all the cussing, but last night really ticked me off). He never wanted to work out, he already went home, and to me, this just all says that he's not that into continuing with the hard work once he has gone home. Obviously, Heba is going to come back looking great because she's going to continue working hard at home. But, again, what has sunk into their heads about this? NOTHING. To me, they have taken nothing away from this.

Which brings me to my point: Vote for Ed. Screw these game players big time. I've been struggling with eating right all week, due to my cold, finals stress, and just being cooped up in my house due to the previous two issues. To me, it kind of sucks to have gained some weight this week, but you know what? I've learned so much about food, about myself, and about what I can do on this journey over the past year. And I refuse to gain the fifty pounds that I've lost back. To me, it's not about having a negative movement on my weight tracker. That's great, but I know that it's not going to happen every week. I lost close to 30 pounds this year. Would I have liked to lose more? Yes, but at the same time, weight loss is not a contest. I used to find this show so inspiring, and really, I credit the first "couples" season as being a huge motivator in my exercise challenges to myself. But now, I'm getting as jaded as all of you. And Bob's pleas last night for Vicky, Heba, and Ed to realize what this show is all about is too little too late. I'm just hoping that next season isn't as cut throat as this season, or NBC will be losing another viewer.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Ever have one of those days....

Where you feel fat, bloated, and ugly? That's me today to a T. I literally retreated from the office to come home and put my sweatpants on. But I found a little pick me up in my mailbox from Dove. Excuse my dazed/I have a cold look:

Consider yourself hugged... because y'all are beautiful!!!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Thoughts on a Cold

Found on
Here are some common sense tips for resuming workouts after being sick:

Don't rush it -- make sure you are FULLY recovered before you return to your exercise routines. If you have been sick for over a week, allow a few days of good health to pass before starting up again.

Avoid vigorous cardiovascular activities immediately after recovering from a cold or flu. Increased breathing may irritate and weaken your respiratory system.

Reduce intensity level and duration of your first few workouts after recovering from an illness. Do not attempt to make up for lost time by overdoing it.

Finish medications. Do not restart your exercise workouts until you have finished any prescription medicine or over-the-counter medications. Consult with your doctor if necessary.

Stay inside, especially in cold weather and avoid outdoor cardiovascular exercise. The increased stress on your body will weaken your immune system and lead to a relapse.

Stay warm. Hooded sweaters and fleeces are great for keeping your head and neck protected and your defenses up.

Listen to your body. If you are unusually tired, sense a return of any symptoms or just don't feel "right," ease off from your workouts and rest.

Don't forget your vitamins! Boost the immune system by increasing your vitamin C intake.

Don't panic that you have become out of condition because you weren't able to exercise while you were sick. Your health is much more important at this stage.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

I am so FRUSTRATED!!!!!!

I'm still sick as a dog, but now my "cold" has progressed to the point where I think I have a sinus infection (intense headache? check, rainbow colored boogies? check, ran through two boxes of tissues in a week? check). Therefore, I haven't been to the gym in a week. It's really driving me crazy, because I want to get on the elliptical, I want to go running, I want to get back to my spin class. It's also affecting my work. I have so much to get done in the two weeks before I leave for Christmas break, but I seem to have the attention span of a chipmunk (well, wouldn't you be the same way if you were either blowing your nose or coughing every 90 seconds?) I have an appointment with my PCP tomorrow, where hopefully she will bless me with a script for a Zpac, my lovely $10 cure all antibiotic. I guess when you are taking better care of yourself, much more than you have in a decade, you don't expect to be knocked completely flat on your butt by something like a sinus infection :(

One of my only little shining lights of happiness coming out of this misery (I'm waiting the hour before it's okay to take some excedrin again) is that it's clementine season... and I LOOOOOOOOVE clementines. It makes me especially sad when they are 1) ridiculously expensive or 2) you buy a crate only to find that there are four at the bottom that are mushy. But I love them because they are portable, sweet, juicy and delicious. Kroger had a great sale on them this past week, so go buy yourself a crate ASAP and enjoy. Build up that Vitamin C so you don't get sick like me :)

Friday, December 5, 2008

Weekly Weigh In: A Welcome Gain

So, remember how earlier this week, I said that I had gained a ton over Thanksgiving? Well, y'all were right in that it peeled off of my body this week. Officially, I have a gain of 0.4 pounds for the week, but that's soooooooo much better than the 4+ pounds that I was showing last Friday. And, what makes me more grateful is that since I couldn't go to the gym this week, I still was able to lose that weight without exercise and just watching my diet. WOO. I think that sometimes I fall into the trap of exercising so I can eat more, which is not the best mentality. But I think this week helped me get back on track for the rest of the year :) Hope you have a good weekend!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I finally figured it out!!

I'm feeling a wee bit better today. My nose has somewhat cleared up (not running, just congested) and I have a bit of a dry annoying cough (do I sound like a cold medicine commercial or what?), but that's better than how I felt yesterday. However, I'm really disappointed that I didn't go to the gym at all this week (except for spinning on Sunday afternoon) and that I won't be able to run my 5K on Sunday. I kind of wish there was a Turkey Trot for Christmas... so I started googling. My hometown sponsers a First Night celebration and a part of it... wait for it... is a 5K!!!! I can't imagine a better way to 1) blow out a successful 2008 and 2) make sure I don't completely pig out over the holidays. Even better is the fact that I just registered for it. I checked out the course, and it's something that I can completely do. I think I'm going to concentrate on some hill running as soon as I'm completely over my cold because the middle section is a bit of hill running. But I'm so excited about this!!!

excuse me while i go back to my regularly scheduled coughing and nose blowing....

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Biggest Loser Recap: Crazy Crazy Vicky

Greetings from sickly Kiki. I ended up spending the day in my pajamas, grading away. No gym for me. Also, not really much sleep either (stupid cold). I'm actually feeling a little worse today... seems like my cold is now migrating into my throat/chest area. Lovely. So, it'll only be a matter of time before I call my doctor for my wonder drug (ZPac please!) I've also decided that there will be no 5K for me on Sunday. Mad props to y'all who can run while having the largest sinus headache of your life, but me? I've been taking it easy this week, and I want to get over this cold. There will be more 5Ks in the future, and you KNOW I'll be there.


Anyway... BL. Ali tells them to pack up and that they're heading to NYC for their huge makeovers that they're going to debut on the Tyra Banks show (another crazy who I love!). Sounds good until Christian Siriano shows up. As a Project Runway fan, I have to say Christian has become the most overexposed caricature of any of the winners. Seriously, he has to go. BRING TIM GUNN BACK!!! And while people seemed to be raving about all those dresses he picked for the ladies, I'm sorry... hippy girls + pockets on dress = more attention drawn to the hips. My favorite dress that I bought over the summer had flimsy little pockets, but these were just big and bulky. Vicky's hips looked ridiculous with that belt (even I felt bad for her) and I just don't think that Christian had any idea what he was doing dressing a fuller figured woman. Tim Gunn is much more experienced at that. (DID YA HEAR ME NBC???? I WANT MY TIM GUNN!!!!!) Getting to see their families was cool, especially Michelle and her dad (aren't they adorable?) but like Jillian and Bob reminded them in Times Square, they were there for a reason: to lose weight, not to be all glammed up.

Okay, back to the ranch and the challenge for this week. At first, I thought it was the combination of my cold and grading, but the challenges are getting dumber and dumber as the season goes on, no? Here's a plexiglass box. Wedge yourself up in there and stay the longest. Then you get to go on a two week spa vacation. Um, what? NO SENSE. Also, if they can't hold themselves up, they have to drop down into the pool. Vicky stays up there for all of two seconds and then she sits on the divider between her and Michelle, refusing to fall. At this point, Roses by Outcast started playing in my head... you know, the last part of the song where they just keep repeating "crazy crazy b!tch"... yup, that's what I was thinking about Vicky. What on *earth* was she trying to prove by doing that? I loved how Heba was getting mad at her and telling Michelle to push her in. Eventually, Michelle won (rock on!) and they had to sit there for another 10 or 15 minutes before Vicky decided to drop in the water. Then she gave this little speech about how she doesn't trust herself, blah blah blah. It might have been sincere, but seriously, Vicky is like the boy who cried wolf. No one wants to deal with that crap anymore.

Last chance workout.... Jillian's freaking out because she's nervous (she's just a bundle of nerves this season, no?).... weighins: Ed and Renee fall below the yellow line and OF COURSE Vicky votes to keep Ed (you have to say when she puts her mind to something she does it). Renee goes home but looks fabulous! Girlfriend is a size 8. Wow!!! But we know next week is when the final three get to move forward. And just like last year, the public gets to choose who out of the bottom two moves on. Oh, please, let Vicky be in the bottom two. I'd love to vote her off. Me. Vote her off. You too.

Time for more tissues and a hot shower. Toodles!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

All Vicky Haters!!!!

You must watch this video... all the way to the end. The last 20 seconds are priceless!!!

As for me, I'm busy grading and fighting a cold. I'm going to spin tonight, and then sit my butt in front of the tv and grade some more while watching BL. Hope you enjoy the video!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Holiday Season: 1, Kiki: 0

When I stepped on the scale this morning, I was less than happy. I seem to have gained a ridiculous amount of weight over the Thanksgiving holidays, although part of it is from my good ol' PMS bloating. I promise not to moan too much about it, but here on my thoughts on how Thanksgiving one upped me.

I don't understand how I am able to eat right and exercise regularly when I'm at home, but when I go to my mom's house, it's like everything I've done has gone out the window. I did this over the summer when I took my month-long vacation there, and it happened again last week. What's the solution? I can't not visit my mom (and it isn't her at all)... it's me. It's treating the holidays like every other day of the week. Or maybe, instead of treating the holidays like a week long treat or a month long treat (depending how you see it), allow myself to indulge on just that one day instead of having a week long feast on homemade truffles (which I made), fresh French bread from the bakery down the street, bagels with cream cheese (there was Fiber One cereal in my mom's pantry, but I *wanted* that bagel), etc.

I am a bit disappointed in myself. And I think I'm a little scared about the upcoming Christmas/New Years combo. I feel like I never really learned self-control regarding my eating because my rule is to not buy things that I know I will pig out on. But when I go visit friends and family, and they have that stuff (which, duh, they're allowed to), I have no self-control. So, that is what I need to spend the rest of this month preparing: my self-control. I seem to have a stressful three weeks ahead of myself as the semester winds down, so self-control will come into play a ton over the next few weeks. I think it'll be a good test for Christmas break.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Update from Thanksgiving Central

Last night's Biggest Loser? All I have to say is that Amy C. got what she deserved by not kicking off Vicki last week. But she looks AWESOME. And how great were Michelle and Renee last night? I hope they make it all the way to the end. They are just awesome.

I've been running while I'm at home. Last Friday I went for a run and was wearing my usual long sleeved wicking shirt under a tee, and the old crossing guard yelled at me. He said I was going to catch bronchitus from running in the cold and being sweaty at the same time. I laughed at him and ran across the street.

Went shopping yesterday at Ann Taylor Loft. They had this great top that I've been lusting after, and I brought both an XL and a Large into the dressing room. I also wanted to try it on with a pair of black pants, but they didn't have a 14 on the rack. So I picked up a 12. And guess what: The XL was WAY too big, the Large fit perfect... AS DID THE SIZE 12 PANTS. WOOT!!!!

I hope that everyone has a good Thanksgiving. And don't sweat a few treats tomorrow. Enjoy yourself and get back on track with some holiday shopping on Friday :)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Weekly Weigh In: Woo Hoo!

I continue moving down on the scale: I lost 1.4 pounds this week, which rocks my world!!! I really worked out hard this week. I restarted the 30 Day Shred (mainly since I've stopped, I've gotten kind of soft in the middle), went to Spinning on Sunday and Tuesday, and went for a run on Saturday. Yesterday, I skipped my workout to go out to dinner with E and another girl that we work with. You know, having a regular bitchfest (ptg, what did you call it? an eatandbitch?) really really helps with work. All three of us have been having rough weeks, workwise, and it just helped to eat some yummy food and talk it out. After two hours of sitting there and bitching and laughing, I felt a lot more relaxed. It was just what I needed. I ended up having a huge salad with goat cheese (yum) and a stuffed portabella mushroom cap, with zucchini, summer squash, onions, and artichoke hearts. Not so bad, although I'm pretty sure those veggies were sauteed in ridiculous amounts of oil.

I might have mentioned it in the comments of someone else's blog, but I'm putting it out here. I want to lose a total of 35 pounds by the end of 2008. That means I'm 4.8 pounds away from my goal. I have 4.5 weeks to lose these 4.8 pounds... and I think I can do this. I set this goal for myself because I want a reason NOT to pig out at all these wonderful dinners and parties that I will be going to over the next 4.5 weeks. It's also a doable goal... although, as always, I will be happy if I lose 3 or 4 of those pounds instead of the whole 4.8!

So, blogger friends, I am off for Thanksgiving break. Because of huntin' season (yes, it's not hunting season, it's huntin' season), we get all of next week off, which means I'm heading home to no internet land today. Of course, you might find me later this week perched on a stool at Panera, checking email and giving you guys some highlights of my trip, how I'm trying to avoid gaining weight at home (my poor mom... she's so happy that I've lost all this weight, but she's so torn because to her, she wants to feed me. She's Italian, what can I say?) So, no Biggest Loser update or Weekly Weigh In next week. Sorry :( I wish all of you and your families a happy and safe Thanksgiving... and that we keep it moving through the holidays!!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Biggest Loser: You Wanna Piece of Me?

Before I jump into my Biggest Loser post, I have to tell you guys about the funniest thing that happened today. I went to spin class, as usual, and there were two guys in class tonight (apart from the old guy who's there every week). I've seen both of these guys around the gym before, and I'd have to say they're about my age. Well, spinning was crazy tonight. I don't know what happened, but my legs felt like lead. I kept going, but eased up on the resistance a bit... but still sweated like anything...seriously, it was just dripping off of me. When we were done, the guy on the bike next to me gave me a fist bump and he was like "yeah! great job!" I almost laughed out loud (I hope I didn't!) because I really needed that encouragement after my legs felt so tough!


Well, I have to say, I'd love to be on an island with Bob, and since Amy has given up her "island" that she made for herself, I'd be happy to take her place since Bob supposedly resides there. Sigh. He's sooooooooooo dreamy. Even in his nut-hugger 80s shorts.

But onto the game. Seriously, someone needs to use a taser on Vicky. What was up with calling Amy a b!tch every two minutes? I thought this was a family show! I just think it shows how immature Vicky is and how she takes everything personally. The thing is (I know, I'm jumping ahead of myself) Vicky is playing to win. And if Amy is dumb enough to not realize that, well then, she deserves to be left up to the mercy of Vicky.

The 80s theme was so dumb. You didn't have Tim Gunn on this season, but you have an 80s theme? With Ali acting superdumb??? Ugh. I did enjoy Bob's step aerobics class and Jillian's breakdancing class. But the challenge itself is dumb and not really fair. Who knows all those random facts? I don't know. It's quite possible that I was completely bored when Vicky wasn't acting like a rabid dog.

I'm so glad that Michelle used the pound penalty against Vicky instead of taking the cash. I'm so disappointed in Amy. She needs to see that keeping Coleen would have been the smart thing because her weight loss was slowing down, and if she REALLY thinks that Vicky is going to save her if she ever falls below that yellow line... ha. I kind of want it to happen because I think she's dumb. And what was that crap about working 60 hours a week and having two kids? So does that just mean that Vicky's planning on gaining her weight back when she goes home, because, in her words, "when is she going to have time to work out?" Um, hon, it takes work to take the pounds off and KEEP THEM OFF. You're gonna have to keep going.

Coleen looks FABULOUS. Size 10! Woo! I'm just so glad to see how happy she is and that she keeps going. I seriously almost cried at that "where are they now" segment. Next week: Michelle and Renee sound like they are going to be threatened. That's going to make me sniffly again. I do have to say that there will not be an update next week, as I will be away on Turkey holidays. Sorry kids! I promise to pick the BL updates again the first week in December (eek!!!) Stay warm!!

Monday, November 17, 2008

It's Never Too Late to Be What You Might Have Been

That's me, circa 1985, the second from the right (and how unfortunate, I'm the only little tomboy in pants!!!) My best friend from Pre-K, who I later ended up transferring to my high school during senior year, posted this on Facebook earlier today, and I started thinking: Who is that little girl? What is she thinking? Why is she not smiling? (I think the answer to that is I was concentrating on saying cheese.) Did I have any idea where I would be almost 24 years later??

Five years ago, I didn't think I would be divorced. Ten years ago, I couldn't imagine having to go through this journey to lose 100 pounds (considering 10 years ago, I was about 15 pounds lighter than where I am right now). Fifteen years ago, I couldn't picture myself going through a PhD program to become a professor. And yet here I am today. My life is being lived in ways I never imagined. There is a lot more living to do, but when you think back, isn't it amazing how we get to be who we are today?

I have a bookmark that reads "It is never too late to be what you might have been." It is a quote by George Eliot. I was looking at this bookmark last night and thinking... you know what? I'm happy where I am right now. It's definitely not where I expected to be in my late 20s, but you know what? All those bumps and falls and scrapes along the way have made me a stronger woman, emotionally and physically. I'm a lot more sure of myself than I was even three years ago. I credit that to taking better care of myself. I am me and I can shape who I want to be. I can do that by going to the gym. I can do that by listening to my inner voice and following my gut.

One of the things that I've always done was to make deadlines for myself: I'll have my PhD by 26 (it was 27, but who's counting?); I'll be married at 27; I'll have my first baby at 30. I can lose 100 pounds in one year. If I've learned anything over this journey called life, it's that we don't know what's going to happen to us next year, next week, or tomorrow. And I'm okay with that. I tried to think where I would be 24 years in the future... which would make me 52. There's a lot of living to do in those years and I'm going to enjoy every minute of it... and live with no regrets.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Weekly Weigh In: 50 POUNDS GONE!!!!!!!!!!

I lost one single pound this week, but it was good enough to take me out of the 180s FOREVER and to hit my 50 pound mark. This means that I'm halfway to my goal weight! I'm so excited. I have to admit that I didn't always work the hardest towards this goal (ahem, summer), but I finally put my mind to it and reached it! Thanks for all your wonderful words of support to get me over that hurdle!! For your viewing pleasure, here are the official 50 pound mark before and after pics! PS That last "before" picture where I'm standing sideways putting food on my plate? That's from Thanksgiving 2006. I can't believe that was me two years ago!!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Touch Your Boobies

I'm going to postpone my weekly weigh-in post until tomorrow, because there is something that I want to share with you all, which is really important. (but if you look at my ticker, you'll see there is something to celebrate!) Anyway, here's my story. I apologize because I think it's my longest post ever, but it's important.

I woke up on Saturday, November 1, groggy from a large carb indulgence that I shared with friends (pasta dinner with an excellent pumpkin bar creation that my friend made). I do what I do every morning: pee and then strip down to my underwear to weigh myself. I was curious to see what damage those snickers did to my weight loss. But what I didn't expect to happen did. I yawned and stretched, and while I was in front of the mirror, I saw a lump on my right breast. Um, what? When I put my arms down, you couldn't see it, but when I touched it, it felt solid. I could have thrown up right then and there. At first, I called my PCP, because her office is open on Saturdays until noon, and as soon as I told them that I found a lump in my breast, they scheduled me for a Monday afternoon appointment. I then called my mom, freaking out. Crying. I'm four months from my 29th birthday. I have no family history of breast cancer. There is no way this is happening to me. Luckily, my mom was strong for me, and I got past it. Doesn't mean that I didn't spend most of Saturday moping around, being scared. What I kept reminding myself was that I was young and that 80% of lumps are NON-CANCEROUS (thank you Susan G. Komen's website).

Monday, November 3: I was completely freaked out at my dr's appointment. What was positively weird about this whole thing is that I was at the dr's the week before for my annual exam (my PCP is also my gyno) and she found no lumps. I found no lumps. And there it was. About the size of a marble. Because it was palpable, she decided to send me for an ultrasound. I went straight from my PCP's office to the breast care center at the university's hospital. The women there were very nice, bringing me back to a changing area, giving me a little locker for my belongings, showing me the comfy waiting room for us ladies in our blue wrap-around tops. Finally, I was called back for my ultrasound, and the friendliest technician did my ultrasound. She really helped to calm my fears. She told me that I would hear from them in the next 24-48 hours if they found an abnormality, and if I didn't hear from them, no news was good news.

Wednesday, November 5: Still a little hungover from my Obama drinking, I thought to myself, no news is good news. It's been almost two days. And around 10AM, I got a phone call from Lisa, a nurse at the breast care center. The radiologist had looked at my ultrasound and wanted me to come in for a vacuum needle biopsy. However, the breast care center only did these procedures on Wednesdays, and it WAS Wednesday, so we scheduled it for Wednesday, November 12. One week. My friends who I shared this news with were all very supportive. E and D volunteered to come along and hold my hand. My mom said that she would drive the five hours to come hold my hand. I appreciated it all, but I was strong.

There were a few things that got me through the week. First, and most important, I was young, and 80% of all lumps are non-cancerous. I had no family history of breast cancer. However, my mom has had fibroadenomas and had one lumpectomy to take one out that looked odd. But no cancer. My mom also told me that she was about my age when she found her first fibroadenoma, but again, no cancer. I held onto those little tidbits as my strength. I kept repeating to myself, I don't have cancer. I don't have cancer.

Wednesday, November 12: I went to the breast care center around 8:15, and again was shown to the cozy waiting room, where I was waiting with my fashionable wraparound teal top. I was ready for this. Finally, Lisa (the nurse) brought me back and reexplained the procedure (not that she hadn't already done it, and that I hadn't done further research on my own). First, they would numb my skin around the lump. Then, they would give me a local anesthetic deeper down into my breast. When it was all numb, they would give me a little nick (less than a 1/4 of an inch) for the hollow needle to be inserted. Then, the radiologist would vacuum 6-8 samples out of the lump itself. After that was done, they would close me up with skin glue (Grey's watchers: I totally freaked at this point-- would I be disfigured for life ala McArmy and Karev?? I need to stop watching TV.) Oh, and I would get to experience my first mammogram after that.

That was the procedure. There were a few surprises. First, the radiologist is a man. A short little man that as soon as he walked into the room, I thought I was being treated by Rocket Romano from ER (you know, surgeon who was a jerk to everyone to make up for his baldness and stature). He was very matter of fact, and told me that he suggested I get the biopsy, even though he didn't think that my lump was cancerous. Better I know now, then postpone possible treatment if it was cancerous. Um, dude? I'm sitting here half naked. I think I'm on board with the biopsy. Second, he asked if he could bring his resident in. Um, sure. Great... here's another man to see my boob. So, in this tiny room, there was Lisa, my ultrasound tech, and two male doctors. They numbed me up (I got to watch the whole thing on the ultrasound machine, since that's what they were using to guide the needle) and of course, I started shaking and getting cold. I get this reaction to topical anesthetics all the time. THE WHOLE THING WAS OVER IN TEN MINUTES and I didn't feel anything. I went for my first mammogram afterwards, and it was nothing. There is nothing to be afraid of there. Then, they sent me home with a cute little ice pack that would fit inside of my bra. I was told that my results would be back within 7-10 days.

I admit that I'm a little sore, and that my skin glue isn't the prettiest thing I've ever seen, but when I got that phone call this morning from Lisa the nurse telling me that my fibroadenoma is BENIGN, I couldn't help but smile from ear to ear. That is the best news ever. I have to go back in six months for an ultrasound, but other than that, I'm in the clear. I'm relieved beyond belief.

So, why I am sharing all this with you? Mainly because I didn't think this could happen to me. No one in my family has ever had breast cancer. I'm still young. I'm getting healthier. I exercise regularly. But when I saw that lump two weeks ago... my world stopped for all of two hours while I allowed myself to freak out. Then I moved on, did what I had to do to make sure it wasn't cancer, and now I can tell you that you need to do the same. I read somewhere that the average woman takes six months to bring herself to the doctor after she has found a lump. WHAT??? Those 48 hours before I was able to see my PCP was hell. I wanted to know. And you should feel the same. So PLEASE do self breast exams monthly. It doesn't matter if you're 20, 30, or over 40. It doesn't matter if you have no family history of breast cancer. I didn't, and I'm glad that statistics were on my side, and that I'm sitting here knowing that I'm healthy. Don't wait to start caring about your boobies. Do it now.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Biggest Loser: Redemption

First off, I want to say thank you to all of you who responded to yesterday's post regarding Mean People. It's great to know that I have such a support group online (and y'all know that I'm there for you too)!!! That's the main reason I blog. I know there are people going through the same struggles as me, and while we don't really know each other in real life, we can support each other.


So... I love this week each season when they bring back the old contestants and weigh them in. I was even happier to see Philip and Amy come in first and second place, but then we knew that it didn't really matter, that who ever won the challenge would get to come back. Also, during the weigh in, we saw Vicki's true side revealed. Not that we didn't know there was a b!tch in there, but to openly taunt Philip? What a psycho. I have to say good for Philip for standing up to Vicki and Brady and to tell them that they aren't helping, and to see Stacey say how she wondered how things got so ugly since she left. (I particularly enjoyed Heba trying to tell her that it wasn't that bad... it was all Philip's fault. uh huh)

The challenge was the following: Using a step, be the fastest one to reach 1000 steps. OMG. That sounds like hell. And you could totally see that some people were half-assing it throughout the challenge. But Ed and Philip were neck and neck, until Philip tripped (which seriously, how do you do that?) But what got me was Brady and Vicki's reaction to his spill--- the friggin laughter. Are you kidding me??? That's when I started getting angry. And that's also when Stacey started showing her threat. It made me so sad when she didn't win. She started slowing down towards the end, which is when Ed was speeding up. So, Ed won his chance to return, as well as immunity for the week.

The weigh-in was interesting. They had all the women weigh in first, and Coleen and Purple Amy pulled off some impressive numbers. Unfortunately, Michelle was the first to fall under the yellow line, followed by Brady. However, Ali pulled out a twist: there would be no conferring between the weigh-in... they would go straight to the voting room. I thought this was excellent, mainly because you knew that Purple Amy was considering not voting for Brady. And in the end, she didn't. And because there was a tie, the person with the lowest percentage weight loss was sent home... AND IT WAS BRADY. That was the best part of the whole episode. I'm glad Amy started thinking strategy, and that getting rid of Brady was going to help her. Although, from the previews for next week, it sounds like Vicki goes off the deep end (what's up with her REVENGE note?). I just hope it's her next week, and I'm glad that things have evened off a little bit in the voting scheme of things.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Thank You

The whole time I've been blogging, I've seen other bloggers go private or restrict their comments. I didn't think it was a big deal until last night. I received a not-so-nice comment from an anonymous poster and it hurt. Well, at first it did. Then I got angry. I never claimed to be perfect, and I struggle with my eating and exercise every day of my life. JUST LIKE EVERYONE ELSE. That's what makes this a challenge. I'm not putting my life out there for you to judge me. You live your life how you want, and I will decide how to lead mine. Personally, to me, a life without chocolate or wine is not a life worth living. We need to realize that this is not beautiful:

I don't ever want to look like that. I don't ever want to feel how I imagine her to feel. No thank you. So, yes, I indulge in food. I don't think one candy bar (or in fact a whole bag of candy bars once in a blue moon) is going to throw my whole weight loss journey off track. I may be stalled, but at the same time, I haven't gained back the 45+ pounds that I've lost to this point. If you think splurging once in a while is unhealthy, well, kudos to you. To me, I call that life.

So... thank you, snarky anonymous commenter. Thank you for making me angry enough to write this post. Thank you for finally making me stand up for myself. Just this morning, this girl who was MEAN to me in high school friended me on Facebook. You've got to be kidding me. Do you not think I remember all the mean things you said about me in high school? Things that you told me to my face? Things that still hurt me 15 years later? Well.... I'm not 13 anymore. So, if you want to tell me I'm fat, that I eat too much, blah blah blah... you can't hide behind the anonymous tag anymore. I feel bad for my friends who don't have a blogger tag (but you can make one!) who used to post through the anonymous tab, but I had to take it down. If you want to try to rip me down, do it to my face. Don't be a coward. Oh, and by the way? This is for you.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Biggest Loser Prevention Magazine!!!!

I'm going through three days worth of mail, and guess what I found waiting for me? Michelle and Renee on the cover of Prevention!!! They both look great. They are joined inside by Vicki and Brady and Coleen. Michelle and Coleen look fabulous, as does Renee and (as much as I hate do admit this) Vicki. I wonder what this says about the rest of the season... only because I remember last season, Jay was featured in the magazine and he was cut off the show relatively soon after I received that issue. Anyway, just wanted to say how excited I was to find this!

Remember Me?

Hi guys... yes, I took a blogging break to go visit one of my friends down south. L and I went to college together and haven't seen each other since graduation (gasp! seven and a half years!). Anyway, she invited me down to spend the weekend with her, her husband, and her awesome boxer. I had a great time. L totally whooped my butt when doing her morning walks with her dog. She's a great speed walker, which obviously I am not (E-- I get the feeling that when we go for walks on the railtrail, we're talking more than walking) and we did some great walks with some hills thrown in the mix. The weather was wonderful (sunny, 70s) and it was nice just to catch up. L also introduced me to Stacey's Pita Chips (their simply naked ones are delish!) and I finally was able to experience a SuperTarget AND a Trader Joe's. Which we need desperately in my little town. NOW.

As for me, I'm going to be taking it pretty easy this week. Today's my long day at work, so no exercising for me. Tomorrow, I might go for a quick run in the morning, and then spin class in the evening. Wednesday, I'm having a small procedure done (nothing serious, I'll be at work that same day) but I can't exercise/lift heavy for about two days. Which brings me to Saturday, which I'm hoping will be another running day. So, my focus is really going to be on eating well this week, since I can't do much about the exercise. And I really think that's where my focus should be, and that I'll need this time to regroup and see where I am, eating-wise.

Speaking of my weekend away... time for me to catch up on all that work that is waiting!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Morning After

I didn't mention anything about the election on my blog, namely, because who I voted for has nothing to do with my weight loss journey.... however, I do have a big smile on my face today. And I stayed up until 12:30 to listen to Obama's victory speech. And, in between Charlie Gibson calling the election at 11PM and when I went to bed at 12:30, I did have a few celebratory glasses of wine. Which also means I slept in this morning. But... when I awoke, I had this revelation about one of my research projects and what direction I want to take it in for a conference in February. I leapt out of bed and jotted my idea down quickly. Awesome.

You guys crack me up!! I know that I can't use my extended calories to eat pizza, chocolate, or gelato or to drink a half bottle of wine (um... sorry, I did do that last night). But I also made a lovely chicken stirfry with peppers and onions for dinner and so I didn't splurge so much foodwise, just celebratory wine wise. Therefore, your advice (warnings?) are duly noted.

I went to spin again last night. I got there a little later than I wanted to (texting with E about Castro and Black Panthers... and dealing with said chicken), so I had to figure out my bike measurements/adjustments. I looked it up, and then about a minute into our warmup, I had this thought... "WHERE ARE MY KEYS??" I usually leave them up front at the desk (they have a little hook system), but I couldn't remember if I did or not. So, I got off my bike, got a lot of weird looks, ran to the front desk, saw my keys hanging on their hook, and ran back to the gym and got on my bike. I have to say that yesterday's class went a lot better. I didn't get so sore, maybe because I'm getting more used to how the resistance on the bikes work, and also that I realize that I sweat ALOT and this makes my butt slide on the seat, so I need to use my abs and legs to keep me in place. This instructor was a lot less yell-y than the other one, and I really liked the class. So, Tuesday nights are a keeper, and I'll be home in time to watch the Biggest Loser too!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Food worries

I am a bit concerned that I might not be eating enough since I've increased my activity, hence my somewhat stalled weight loss. Many of you know that I refuse to track calories, points, etc. I find that in doing that, I become obsessed... like I need to enter that tootsie roll into Sparkpeople RIGHTNOW. But, in calculating my basal metabolic rate (which tells me what calories I need to ingest before I can exist), I'm thinking that SP and other calorie counting websites are way off. I used this calculator to figure out my calorie range... and it's telling me that I need to be eating between 1450-1850 calories for weight loss. Wow. I think, just through guesstimation, that's a lot more than what I've been eating. So, I'm going to up my calories for the next two weeks and see what happens. Therefore, I will NOT be weighing in this Friday, in order to give this new approach at least 10 days to see what happens. It's just so frustrating, because it's such a delicate balance between eating too much and not eating enough. I know that once in a while, I do need to go back to tracking in order to get back on track (ugh) with my eating, but still. I hate doing it.

Monday, November 3, 2008


I ate way too much chocolate this weekend. I had a whole bag of Snickers fun size bars, half on Friday and the rest for breakfast on Saturday (ha!). Okay, and E had two of them, I think. But still. Then yesterday, I had a bunch of Dove milk chocolate almond squares. Mmmm... I don't know why, but when I get stressed, I want chocolate. You know how people reach for comfort foods. Chocolate is my comfort food. I could honestly eat chocolate morning noon and night. I can never be sick of it. I think this is my official coming out. Hi, my name is Kiki, and I am a chocoholic. The first step is recognizing that I have a problem. The rest is learning how to deal with my "chocolate dependency."

Sunday, November 2, 2008

A Giggle for Your Weekend...Courtesy of Me

I've never tried spinning. To me, it's intimidating. I keep picturing myself as Bridget Jones, Chaka Khan rightly playing in the background, falling off her exercise bike (don't know what I'm talking about? watch this video... the first 55 seconds will do). But my gym recently changed its policy regarding spinning, in that the classes don't cost any extra. So I thought, why not? I can totally hit this Sunday 12:45 class and it will be no problem. I even showed up five minutes early, introduced myself to the teacher, and had her fit me for the bike.

"Oh my" doesn't begin to cover it. My butt hurts. Literally. I was sitting on my sofa, reading some articles for the grad seminar I teach on Monday nights, and I was thinking, "that's weird, why does my butt hurt." Hmm... isn't that the same place where the bike's seat hit my butt? Ugh. The realization of this connection makes me worry about what's in store for tomorrow, at least, in the soreness department.

But the class itself was good. The instructor was good at explaining the instructions she shouted out (hover, uphill sprint, etc). And yell she did (funny, she warned me about the yelling too). At first I was a little taken back. This chick is psycho! And then I started to think about Jillian (seriously folks, is there a workout when I don't think of Ms. Michaels??) and how she yells at her trainees. It is motivating for someone to be shouting at you, because trust me, about 20 minutes in, I wanted to quit. I actually thought about getting off the bike, picking up my water bottle, and walking out. But I didn't. I stayed. I saw the sweat literally dripping off of me. My legs felt like lead at some points, and yes, I thought I was going to die. But I didn't. I stuck with it. And, while I am sore in places that I'd rather not mention, it was an awesome workout. I think I'm hooked. I think I can handle some Sunday afternoon and occasionally some Tuesday night spinning. Plus, it'll get me off the elliptical more often, which I am getting so bored with.

So... go try something new workout-wise. Hopefully, you won't be as sore as me :)

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Keeping Track

I'm amazed at people who use Excel to keep track of their daily lives. Sure, I use it at work for grades and my data, but I only have one other use for it at home: I use it to track my weight. I have a spreadsheet going back to January with all my info-- weight, lost that week, lost so far, and my BMI. However, when it comes to keeping track of my exercise routine, I use a good old fashioned calendar and a pen. This hangs on my refrigerator:

I started using it as a way to keep track of what I was supposed to be doing on the Biggest Loser video. Then, when I did some of Swizzlepop's ab challenges, I used it to tally my cardio time. Now, I use it as a motivator. Did I already take a day or two off that week? Well, I'd better do something to move my booty! Here's what it looks like up close (this is October):

Today, the first day of November will have a little note that says "C25K: 38 minutes, 2.81 miles". Or maybe I can mark it as my graduation day from C25K and just say "Ran 38 minutes, 2.81 miles." Because, to me, it is UNBELIEVABLE that I actually ran for 38 minutes straight. Part of it is a mind game, and part of it is what I'm feeling in my legs and arms right now (soreness). I just can't believe I did that. I can't believe I *can* do that. I think with a month out from my 5K, training is now into full force, and I'll be aiming for those 3.1 miles every run. Woo!!!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Weekly Weigh In: The Scary Halloween Edition

I think I might be a Sopranos character for Halloween this year, only because I flipped off my scale this morning and was tempted to threaten it until it showed me the numbers I wanted to see. C'mon!!! I lost 0.8 pounds this week (yay, loss, she says sarcastically) but I'm 0.6 pounds away from my 50 pound mark. That's it. A lousy bit more than a half pound. I worked my butt off this week, and I'm so mad at what happened weight-wise. Grr. (okay, vent over. I am happy that I lost this week, but seriously, I thought I'd be in the 170s this morning, but I'm *STILL* in the 180s. Gimme a break!)

As I mentioned on Miz's blog, I was thoroughly disappointed in the whole BL Oprah edition. Basically, they paraded everyone from the last Ali-won season. It was like a WOW look at their transformation. It was a bit depressing, because everyone said they spend two hours at the gym daily to maintain what they lost on the ranch. Huh? That is not going to work in this little girl's life. One hour a day is what I can give up (okay, that's a lie, I probably could give more, but that would be bordering on exercise obsessiveness!) And it sounds like the guys had the biggest struggles with who they were in this new body.

This is something I've talked with a lot of you about... how you see yourself. I'm getting a lot better with recognizing myself in THIS body, my 180ish pound body vs. my 235ish pound body. One of the things I did this year was go through my closet and get rid of my once too tight size 20pluses. But there are still some things I held onto because they didn't look that bad. Uh, that's a lie. Too big clothes look as ridiculous as too tight clothes. But yet... and many of you know about this... there are days when I lay out my clothes in the morning, and I think, uh, no, I'm so not going to fit in that today. But then I do. Amazing. It's a mind-game, just like running is.

Another thing Jillian and Bob talked about was working out. Bob says you should have one rest day, Jillian says two. Hmm. What do YOU do? I try to exercise at least 5-6 times a week. But let me tell you... if I *only* exercise five times in one week, I do feel guilty. Why couldn't I have gone to the gym for day 6? Or did a video? Or gone for a walk? How many days a week do YOU exercise? Do you try to hit a certain goal? Do you feel guilty if you don't?

Have a good weekend!!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Just. Keep. Going.

OMG OMG OMG.... Bob and Jillian are going to be on Oprah. TODAY. THURSDAY. I just found out and rearranged my schedule so I can be home to watch (good thing I have no office hours/classes on Thursdays!!) Obviously, more on this tomorrow!!

There is this point on the "30 Day Shred" video that Jillian says "I know you think you're going to DIE... but you're not." That's where I was today. Today was my first 27 minute run, and I really thought about not doing it at all (stupid cold winter-like weather and stupid me for picking a 5K at the beginning of December). On Monday morning, when I did my last 25 minute run, I expanded my running area past the stadium/hospital complex and onto the roads/sidewalks around there. I decided to go in the opposite direction of where I went on Monday, just to challenge myself a bit. This is how the run went:

The first 17 minutes was fine. In fact, easy. (wow... did I just say that?) Nice, flat/downhill area. Then, around 17.5 minutes, I got hot. As in sweaty hot. I was running with a long-sleeved wicking shirt under a sweatshirt plus gloves... it's cold out there!!! So I stopped and took my sweatshirt off and tied it around my waist. Then, I faced the mountain. Ha. Seriously, I knew it was coming at the end of my run. So, I started running up it. I kept thinking as cars drove past me, that their drivers were thinking "OMG... she's going to die." In my head, I started thinking "OMG... I'm going to die." And then Jillian's voice popped in my head: "NO YOU ARE NOT." So, I started thinking more positively. Slow and steady wins the race. You're almost at the top. Just. Keep. Going.

And I did. And after 27 minutes, I saw that I had run 2.14 miles. That's a 12.5 minute mile!!!!!! I seriously was so proud of myself. Heck, I still am!!! I'm feeling a lot more confident about the 5K in 5 weeks. I kept having dreams about finishing the 5K in 45 minutes-- the last person across the finish line-- but if I continue at this pace, I'll be done in about 35 minutes, which is totally acceptable. I think that I can easily start running for 30 minutes at a time (which I'm going to try on Saturday and see how that works out). Trust me, I'm all smiles today :)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

BL Recap: All Right Already!!!

Really really quick before I grade...

I missed the first half hour. I gathered about the Blue Team winning a temptation/challenge (what on earth would you call that?) and adding 40 pounds to the Black Team's weight at the actual hanging on a pulley challenge. (I also missed Bob calling Vicki "Shakespearean"... she's SO Lady MacBeth... damn.) Anyway, I think Phil is a big wimp. Dude, I was waiting for you to tighten your grip on that rope. Geez... to be shown up by Renee???? Should have put her in the middle.

Missed the last chance workout half hour... on the phone with my mom. But the weigh ins??? I hate Brady (but you already know that) AND Vicki AND Heba. I'm glad Phil went home (big wuss, and really? A vote for Michelle??) BUT I can't wait for next week. I love when they let old cast members rejoin (yay!! like Ali last year!!!) and that they're all going individual. Think that Vicki and Brady will end up hurting each other when they turn individual?

That's all for now. Need to grade before I head to the gym. I have another hot date tonight with the elliptical :) Tell me what YOU thought of BL!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

My motivation for the gym

Sorry for the lack of blog updates this week... work/life is crazy.

What make me go to the gym when I don't want to? The fact that I shell out $36 a month for it. That's what is making me go there right now and fulfill my date with the elliptical. I could do a video. I could do nothing. But I want my money's worth :)

There very probably will not be a BL update this week. Sorry kids!


Here is my post gym update. Yes, I go to the old people gym (E will tell you that). But what drives me crazy is that the people in the 50+ range don't give a CRAP about form when they are lifting weights. I saw this guy do a tricep kickback today, and I swear, I thought he was going to hurt himself. I also saw some 50 year old lady doing bicep curls, and again, lifting with ridiculously heavy weights, and doing exaggerated Sly Stallone movements. Oy.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Music Motivation

I read on The Daily Spark that we should make different playlists to go with the different activities we do: running, elliptical, cross-training, etc. I decided to spend a little bit of time on my Saturday to do this (so much better than cleaning my bathroom). In the process, I learned a little bit about myself and my music.

1) According to my "Top 25 Most Played" list, I've played "Waterloo" by ABBA 190 times, by far the most played song in my Itunes. "SOS" by ABBA was a distant second, played 83 times. I blame a random watching of "Muriel's Wedding" and then my viewing of "Mamma Mia!" And, seriously, who does not love "Waterloo" or ABBA?

2) My friend R and I exchanged CDs back in September of running music. My list to her included: "I'm Every Woman" by Whitney Houston, "Stronger" by Britney Spears, "Lose Yourself" by Eminem, "Labels or Love" by Fergie, "Stronger" by Kanye West, "Celebrity Skin" by Hole, "You Can Do It" by Ice Cube, "Canned Heat" by Jamiroquai, "Stupid Girls" by Pink, "Hung Up" by Madonna, "I Don't Wanna Be In Love" by Good Charlotte, "Fighter" by Christina Aguilera, "When I Grow Up" by the Pussycat Dolls, "She Bangs" by Ricky Martin, "Gonna Fly Now" from the Rocky movies, "4 Minutes" by Madonna and JT, and "Brand New Day" by Sting.

3) My recently purchased music includes "Hot N Cold" by Katy Perry, "Keeps Gettin' Better" by Christina Aguilera, "Mama Said Knock You Out" by LL Cool J, "Groove is in the Heart" by Deee-Lite, and "Once in a Lifetime" by Talking Heads. I've started noticing that my radio listening turns into "running song analysis", as in, "this sounds like a good workout song."

4) Prior to this new playlist kick, I had 162 songs on my Ipod Shuffle. Unfortunately, I found myself shuffling to some specific songs, so I think these playlists are going to help me. Like "Thnks fr th Mmrs" by Fallout Boy. Not a Fallout Boy fan at all, but it is perfect for a mid-elliptical pickup.

5) Cheesy songs get me moving. Take, for instance, "Baby Got Back" by Sir Mix-a-Lot. Yes, it's on my Shuffle. Yes, it is cheesy beyond belief and it makes me think of that episode of Friends where Rachel got her baby to not cry by singing it. However, if you got some JLo-type authentic booty (like me), you've got to embrace it. (Sidenote: I love on the 30 Day Shred when Jillian tells us to stick our butts out when we're doing squats... "Ain't no shame ladies!" She cracks me up.) "So Cosmo says you're fat? Well, I ain't down with that. Cuz your waist is small and your curves are kicking..." Yes, in all the misogynistic lyrics that are included in this song, sometimes, Sir M. comes up with some nice points.

So what songs are you totally loving right now? Tell me some cheesy/wouldn't tell your friends you like them songs that you LOVE to work out to. I'd like to know that I'm not the only one obsessed with teeny bopper music at the gym!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Weekly Weigh In: Basking in the Love

I lost 2.2 pounds this week... which brings me to my lowest weight since starting this weight loss journey. WOOT!!! I reached my lowest point back in June before I went to Spain and then spent a month at home with my family, barely exercising and eating whatever I wanted. (Bad Kiki!) But look! Look!!! I'm 1.4 pounds away from reaching my 50 pound goal. I'm hoping to reach it next week, but....

I've made a decision not to hang things up on deadlines. For instance, I'm not going to tell myself that I need to lose my next 50 pounds by June. It took me over a year to get these 48.6 pounds off. I refuse to get hung up on those deadlines. I look better than I have in a long time and I feel fantastic. I'll probably look better and feel even better when I'm rid of these last 50 pounds, but you know what... it'll happen. For instance, I told myself that I wouldn't redesign my blog until I hit that 50 pound mark. Well, I was REALLY getting sick of my old background. So, I changed it. And you know what? I think it motivates me a little bit to giggle at my "pound" ticker at the top of the page (I'm such a nerd, forgive me) and to see the new cute argyle background. Why do we do this to ourselves? Are we going to continue punishing ourselves for losing "only" a half pound or a pound a week? THAT IS THE AVERAGE. Just roll with it.

As for my doctor's appointment... first off, I got weighed in, fully clothed and shod, which is not what I do at home. According to the doctor's chart, I lost about 22 pounds since I was last there in November (ear infection, which is when she mentioned putting tubes in my ears... thank goodness that cleared up). Anyway, the nurse (who's chubby herself) starts asking me what I've been doing to lose my weight, and I told her that I'm just eating better and exercising, to which she gave me a "Yeah, right" look. Why is it that fat people think that other fat people are using some magic recipe to get rid of excess weight? It's all about calories in/calories out!!! Oh, and as a former hypertension patient (complete with meds), I'm happy to report that my BP was 124/78. Woot! Then the doctor comes in and also commends me for my weight loss. I ask her about my exercise induced asthma, which is triggered by the cold weather, and she suggests that I might want to exercise indoors. I told her that I will, but for now, I'm training for a 5K on December 7, and I need to work on it outside. To which she was like, that is AWESOME. Seriously, I thought she was going to high-five me. So, her solution is two fold: take a hit off of my inhaler BEFORE I exercise (rather than waiting until I get asthma related symptoms) and if it's REALLY cold, think about putting a scarf or something over my mouth and nose. Since I've moved my training to the afternoons when it's warmer, I'm hoping that it isn't much of an issue .

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Don't Call It a Comeback

I've had "Momma Said Knock You Out" by LL Cool J stuck in my head over the last few days, especially that one line. This whole fitness thing is a lot of ebb and flow, between not being motivated, being sick or being too busy. Yesterday, I had a flu shot around 12:30. By 3:30, my arm was in total pain. I read online that they administer the flu shot directly into a muscle, which is why it gets so sore. I decided to skip the 30 Day Shred last night (ha! plank on that arm? ha!) and again this morning, even though I'm feeling better. I don't want to push it. I did 45 minutes on the elliptical last night as well as this morning. Today was supposed to be a running day, but because I run near/around my university's football stadium, and we're having a Thursday night football game, that wasn't going to happen. I went to the gym and attempted to make nice with the treadmill. Nope, couldn't do it. I gave up after about 2 minutes of uncertainty and just went on the elliptical. I'll attempt my run tomorrow, and then again on Sunday.

I'm going to the doctor today. It's time for my annual checkup, plus I really want to talk to her about my exercise induced asthma. I've been battling asthma since I was 3. What I had when I was a child was ridiculous, but it got better as I grew up. The only time my asthma started bothering me again was when I moved from Florida to West Virginia and started walking up the hills and steps in and around campus. I needed to get an emergency inhaler for those attacks (and still, I didn't do anything about my weight. D'oh!). Since I've lost weight and gotten more fit, it isn't much of an issue anymore, but since it's gotten cooler (and now colder) my asthma kicks it into high gear after a run. I get kind of wheezy and raspy and (TMI) really phlem-y. So, I want to discuss this with her, because I don't want my asthma to stand in the way of me kicking my fitness into high gear. Wish me luck!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

My horoscope... again

Geez... what is up with my (aries) horoscope lately. Check out the one for today: You are much more playful and physical than usual, which may be saying quite a bit! Today is great for starting a new routine at the gym, getting back into yoga or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Hmmm.... interesting.

Biggest Loser: Black Widow

Just a little update on me before I start hating on the Biggest Loser. Went for my run yesterday, and honestly, I seemed to run into everyone I know. The priest from my church. One of my grad students. Geez. I never run into people, but today I did. I did 1.89 miles in 25 minutes, which is about a 13 minute mile. Yeah, I'm slow. But I have seven weeks until my race, and so I'll just be happy doing it in 35-40 minutes, which translates into a 11 or 12 minute mile. I guess my biggest issue with running where I run, is that there are a lot of hills, hidden and explicit (as in, "oh, that didn't LOOK like a hill, but ouch" vs. "gd, that is one big hill ahead of me"). All in all, I'd say this run was a-okay.

Biggest Loser time.... you know the drill if you didn't watch it.

I hate Vicky. I know, my mom told me to never say that I hate someone, but really I do. She is manipulating the show, she and Brady are throwing their weights, they totally made up that story about Phil going up to Brady and asking for them to save his wife, and Heba is just dumb if she thinks that she can depend on them to stay in the game. I hate that she said they were there to win $350,000. Not to lose weight. Not to get healthy. But to win the money. Ugh. I hate her.

The episode was kind of boring in my opinion. The teams did some different exercises: The Blue Team was all Cirque d'Soleil with some rope/material type aerobatics. The Black Team did a challenge course which reminded me a lot of a challenge course zip cord that challenged *me* as a RA my senior year in college. Then, they had their weekly challenge that involved balancing. The prize was a video from home, which Vicky quickly deemed as "unworthy" and "non-beneficial". Whatever. Lots of people have commented on how Vicky doesn't play the game, she doesn't consider her team... this made me wonder what kind of mother she is that she doesn't want to see her children. WTH? The Black Team won, and they were surprised to find that the videos weren't videos, but instead, live teleconferencing with their families. Awesome. The weighins were awesome... geez. The Black Team kicked some major behind!!!! The Blue Team lost, with Vicky being the "biggest loser" and therefore, winning immunity, and they all ganged up on Red Amy and kicked her off. It was so dumb. And what is up with Bob's hair? What is he doing that makes it look so different.

Sorry for the short BL rundown. I'm in the middle of a research project, and I would like to go vote early today. Leave me a comment and tell *me* how you felt about Vicky and the negativity surrounding the Biggest Loser this year.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Written in the Stars

So, here's my horoscope for today (it's yours too, if you're an Aries): Your energy today is perfect for physical exercise of any kind, from walking an extra block to running a marathon. Don't overdo it, of course, but expect a little boost just when you need it most. Funny, because today IS a running day for me. I'm doing it after work, which seems to be working out best for me. I'm starting week seven of C25K, which are 25 minute runs. I'm excited. I've been planning out a new route for my runs, and I think I have enough there for a good 25 minute run.

My weekend was great. Friday night, went to the gym and sweated it out on the elliptical. Saturday, got up and did my first 25 minute run. I was dying by the end of it, but at the same time, I totally pushed through it. My pedometer guesstimates that I ran about 1.8 miles in that time, so I want to work on my distance (um... don't want to be running a 5K near the 50 minute mark!!!) and speed. I also went hiking with E on Saturday. We got a bit lost, but at the same time, had a lot of fun... 5 miles total, half of it uphill.

My week is a busy one. Done with grading until next week, working on some research (read, entering data), and still advising... I'm scheduling my workouts for the evening as a kind of reward for the day spent working hard.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

A Note from Dr. Kiki

I've been at my current university for three years now, which has given me plenty of time to get some Dr. Kiki groupies. You know those kids... the ones who take every single class you offer because they think you're 1) cool, 2) easy, or 3) both. I had my first groupie group during my first and second year here, and yesterday, one of these groupies came to visit me. This young man ended up sitting in my office for close to an hour shooting the breeze (it was a Friday, and quite honestly, all I had to do on my list was grading, and I was avoiding it as much as he was avoiding his work). E stopped by before she was heading home, and asked if we were still on for hiking tomorrow. After I said "definitely!", my groupie turned to me with a big smile on his face and said, "Really? You don't seem like the hiking type."

Granted, I was sitting in the office in my blue cashmere sweater, black pencil skirt and heels (yes, it was Friday, but I had lunch with the dean earlier in the day... be thankful that I didn't wear my pearls, which I whip out for ALL career related moments). Stylewise, I like to think of myself as someone like Charlotte out of Sex and the City, classic but chic. Seriously, when I reach my goal weight, I'm going on a shopping spree at Ann Taylor and Talbots. I love that stuff. And yes, I wouldn't be caught dead in public without my hair flat ironed. Or makeup. Or earrings. And a bracelet. And my favorite ring. But does that make me prissy? Does that make me a non-hiker?

The answer to that question is a big old Whitney Houston "hell to the no". Just because I like hiking and running outdoors doesn't mean that I need to be granola crunchy 24/7. It means that I can shop at Ann Taylor for cashmere (yay! nothing makes me happier!) AND Target for cheapo sports bras. I can wear four inch heels AND Asics. I can flat iron my hair AND pull it back under a cap for a run. Don't judge a book by its cover :)