Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Spinning My Wheels in the Mud by Andi

If you recall from previous posts, doing a mud-run was one of Tug’s goals for the year.  I happened to stumble upon the Dirty Girl Mud Run while at work one day.  Some work buddies were talking of putting a team together.  I thought it sounded better than the Cupid Undie Run or the barbed wire infused Survivor Mud Run, both of which I had heard of on Facebook.  It was about this same time that I started to question whether a weight LOSS goal was reasonable.  Did I want to get skinny or did I want to be fit?  One thing was for sure, I knew that whatever the goal would be, I wanted to step outside my comfort zone and do new things.  I wanted to do the Dirty Girl Mud Run. 
Prior to the run, people asked me “What are you doing to train for it?”  I told them nothing.  I mean, I am working out 4-5 times a week but I would have done that with or without the run.  I did nothing to prepare for it.  And I thought that was ok.  I heard it was a run for all capabilities.  And that would have been true for me IF I would have had a team with normal length legs.  But no.  I joined a team made of female volleyball players (read Amazon Goddesses).  These women were maybe a little more fit than me but certainly they could cover more ground in less time.  And I was desperate to keep up.  So while they walked and ran 50/50, I pretty much ran or jogged the whole time.  While they dove into the frigid cold mud pits like they were digging for a ball, I tip-toed in and slowly melted into the mud like I was crawling into bed trying not to wake a sleeping baby.  While they leaped over 4 foot wall obstacles with grace, I got stuck with one leg up on the ledge and the other dangling like a wet noodle.  It was hard.  But I learned lessons for NEXT TIME. 
Next year I will wear Capri pants to save my knees from thorns and rocks in the mud I must crawl through.  I will wear some kind of covering on my elbows to protect them from the same grit while doing army crawls.  I will pick a team of short people.   And lastly, I will not be rushed to get home.  This year, I scheduled a play date for my daughter and her “fiancĂ©” for 2 pm.  (Note my daughter is five.  She got engaged at age four to “Michael” one beautiful spring day in preschool).  So, play date at my house at 2 pm.  My run was at 10:15.  Right.  Bad planning.  Michael’s mom fully intended on staying for the play date since it was the first time he was ever at our home.  That would have been fine.  Except I showed up to a play date at my own house 45 minutes late and still pretty muddy.  My poor, easy going, un-talkative husband had to entertain our future son in law’s mother by himself.  Thank you, Tug.  And the second half of the play date I sat on my couch with this lovely woman itching from dried mud and pretending my hair was not caked with the stuff.  I bet she’s just glad they don’t have to pay for the wedding. 
I digress.  The run was amazing.  I finished it in just over one hour.  I climbed a 30 foot cargo net!  I climbed over two walls.  I ran for more than 1 minute at a time.  I am so proud of myself.  I indeed stepped out of my comfort zone with this run.  Just like I did with Zumba and pre dawn workouts.  Not too shabby. 
And speaking of Zumba, I have almost completed week three and I am still loving it.  If I would have followed my instructor last night step for step, I would have burned 520 calories.  But alas, I was lost more than once, left standing dumbfounded, head tilted with a stupid grin on my face.  So I’m guessing my number was closer to 300.  I’ll take it. 
I weighed myself this morning.  Total weight loss 9.6.  Not the best news Scale has given me in the past nine months.  But who am I kidding?  Stacy Pita chips are a non-stop joy ride.  Cheetos are better when consumed in bulk and red wine does not last long after it’s been opened.  After a very frank discussion with Tug about this strange weight anomaly, I realized I have been spinning my wheels.  I have been working out so well and trying new things and pushing my comfort zone but I have also been making excuses to eat more and worse.  I’m not just maintaining.  I am gaining.  I cannot do this.  Why in the world would I get up at 4:15 in the morning, drag myself to the gym before work if I was still gaining weight?  I’m spinning my wheels.  Last night I pulled out my old Weight Watchers bag-o-tools.  I found old weigh-in trackers that reminded me ten years ago, I was 35 pounds lighter.  The lightest I have ever been as an adult.  Do I want to get there again?  No.  I had no muscle.  But I still want to be that SIZE.  I still want to lose weight.  I want to lose 20 pounds.  So here I go again.  I think if I maintain my activity and add point tracking, I will get there easier than ever. 
Today I started tracking points.  I get 21 points a day.  I am going to reintroduce myself to Scale and see if we can agree on an appropriate amount of time to spend together.  Why is this better for me than My Fitness Pal on my I-phone?  Because W.W. point tracking is less math and in my face.  It’s so much easier to track 21 points than 1200 calories.  And my W.W. tracker is sitting on my desk at work rather than My Fitness Pal which is only available to me when I access it. 
So, I’m feeling a little embarrassed that I have “reverted” to an eating plan.  Embarrassed to admit that to myself and you.  But I would be even more embarrassed if I would gain all that weight back and start 2013 at the same weight as I started 2012.  So the Quest continues. 

Friday, September 14, 2012

Some Important Observations About Zumba by Andi

Let’s get the business part of this post out of the way.  Yes, it’s been a month since my last post.  Yes, Tug and I told you we would post weekly.  I think I have indeed gained weight.  I have not journaled food on Fitness Pal in about 3 months.  I took two weeks off exercising.  I have eaten some bad things like Cheetos and French fries.  My clothes feel a little tight.  I am bummed about all this but encouraged that I had 6 workouts in five days.  That’s right.  One day I worked out two times.  That is because I started ZUMBA!
Disclaimer #1: I am not a good dancer. 
Disclaimer #2: I probably would not have done this if my friend Sarah did not ask me to join her.
Final disclaimer: No, I don’t really have the time for Zumba but I thank my husband for making it work.
Zumba meets twice a week at my local rec center.  I think I paid about $45.00 for 5 weeks.  I thought this would be an easier workout than my 40 minute running/weight lifting circuit workout.  I was so sure this would be a “workout light” that the first day I not only did my circuits in the morning, I wore a regular daytime bra to Zumba.    Both turned out to be mistakes.  In fact, I have made a few mistakes with this Zumba thing.  Let me share them with you.  I hope this helps any Zumba hopefuls make good choices instead of Andi choices. 
Lesson #1: Zumba is a really good workout.  You do not need to add a workout before or after it.  It would however be helpful to add a glass or two of wine before it.  That would assist in loosening up the joints and allow you to dance better.  (This is actually a lesson I learned in college.  Wine=good dancing).
Lesson #2: Wear a sports bra, not a regular everyday bra.  There is a lot of jumping, swooping and gyrating of which a regular bra cannot handle.  In fact, wear two sports bras.
Lesson #3: Panty liners can’t hurt.  I am pretty sure Zumba instructors don’t realize that many of their students have had children.  Need I say more?  Didn’t think so. 
Lesson #4: Take your glasses off.  Your face will sweat.  Your glasses will fall down your nose.  But more importantly, glasses allow you to see yourself in the mirror and that is a big no-no.  You do not want to see yourself in the mirror.  And there is a mirror.  Fifty mirrors, actually. 
Lesson #5: Don’t eat before class.  Especially Taco Bell.  (see Lesson #2)
Lesson #6: Get ready to meet the other You.  The You your spouse keeps telling you is inside.  That’s the woman whose hair blows in the wind on a non-windy day.  She’s that woman who wears electric blue eyeliner and shiny red pumps with peek-a-boo toes.  She’s the one who hangs with Paula Abdul and Janet Jackson on Sunday afternoons.  Ok, that might be a stretch.  Let me just say that it takes a lot of effort to shake it, shimmy, grind and pump it in any given beat.  And bit of effort toward this end will open a new view of yourself.  And she’s HOT!  (When you are not wearing glasses).
I am sure week two of Zumba will expose more lessons.  Seeing how I am still a novice, please feel free to share your own.  Help a sister out.