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I'm back?

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Yeah, I've been AWOL far too long. FAR, FAR too long. And, it shows, everywhere. Time to come back. Hopefully, I'll manage 3 posts and quite a bit of reading a week to keep me motivated and moving.

I've set up a serious and solid exercise plan. I'm training for a 10k (the first week did not go well, but there were extenuating circumstances I'll get to in a minute and all is not lost). I'm working on eating better which means more balanced, more nutritious and more sensible.

I've got to keep this short because I've GOT to work out and it's already nearly bed time, but I wanted to stop the procrastination of actually coming back and typing something out.

So, I already mention training for the 10k. I inherited my sister's old Garmin when she got a new, shiny, higher tech one for Christmas. I went through the trouble of programming in training sessions and everything and then did only one of them last week. So, what happened you ask? Well, it's not exactly like I slacked off. I did Tuesday's run and then Thursday hit and I KNEW on Wednesday that I was going to be busier than a bee in springtime on Thursday so I made the CHOICE to not run on Thursday. I made it ahead of when the alarm went off and knew that I would still get enough activity during the day to make up for the lack of early morning activity and that I would, indeed, need that time for sleeping to get me through the day.

That explains Thursday. What happened on Saturday? Well, on Saturday I was away from home. I was staying in a hotel, without husband and kids at a women's "retreat" for my church. I am quite active in this retreat (we call it Time Out for Women) and have been a "team member" for three years now. Friday night and Saturday through lunch time are very busy for me. I always run the service project we run in connection with the event. This year (and last) we hosted a food drive for a project called My Backpack. All over the country kids rely on school meal programs to feed them. Often they go home at the end of the day and do not eat again until they go to school again the next morning. When weekends roll around, or holidays, they simply go without food. My Backpack specifically provides food packets that are designed to be usable by kids over the weekend to survive until school meals are available again. We provide simple items like canned tuna, mac and cheese, cup o' noodle soup, crackers, raisins, instant oatmeal and granola bars. Things that kids who are used to providing for themselves can easily prepare and enjoy. Friday night and Saturday morning are collection days. We divide up the items by last name and everyone brings in their assigned items. Luckily I have an entire team of dedicated women helping me with collection so I can count, count, count. When I am done counting I do the math, figuring out ahead of time approximately how many packs we can make. Then at lunch the women return in shifts to bag the items into individual packs. I need to know how many women need to come back so that we can hand out tickets and get the job done. Which, honestly, has never been a problem. People come in swarms to do the simple job of putting items in a grocery style bag and tying it shut. My job during all the bagging and tying is...can you guess? Yep, COUNTING, again. We need an accurate count of the kits we are sending to the food bank. Only now, while I count, I also keep an eye on team members helping the volunteers, an eye on the supplies (crackers and raisins always run out early and then oddly so did the oatmeal (which was strange, we had TONS of oatmeal (or so it seemed))) and answering any random question anyone can come up with. By the time we tie the last bag and count the last kit and break down the last box I am BEAT, but it is totally worth it. I knew going in that these two days would be exhausting.

So, I knew that running outside, alone, along a beach, would be beautiful, but maybe not so wise, so the Garmin, programmed so carefully would not be of any use in this case. I could just sleep, after all I'd be lifting lots of cans and boxes and running back and forth and spending TONS of time on my feet, so I'd be justified in just sleeping. But, I'd just spent two days counting extreme levels of house work as my fitness routine...it was justified...it was extreme and a workout, but THIRD day of that seemed out of line. So...I felt there was only one choice left.

I got up at 4:40, walked through the VERY nice hotel room provided by the event, in the dark so I wouldn't wake my roommate, got dressed and...went to the hotel's fitness room.

Just so you know, in case you ever need this information, the Hyatt at Long Beach provides a VERY nice, albeit small, fitness room. A half an hour on a treadmill sped by as I watched, first the Food Channel and then the History Channel to stay entertained. Next I spent a good amount of time with the weights provided.

Funny story...the weights are wider in diameter than the ones I use at home. I started to do some overhead triceps extentions and bopped myself on the head with the weight...brilliant, right? Exactly the sort of thing one could expect from me though. Luckily at that point no body was in the room with me! I finished my workout with no further mishaps and by the time I left the room was getting quite full. A gentleman very respectfully occupied himself with his phone while I wiped down my bench and replaced my weights before coming on over...I liked that...he wasn't into the intimidation factor, could see I was wrapping up and left me my space while I did so.

Later, at the event, I was checking on something with another team member when she said "were you in the fitness room this morning?" I smiled back..."yes, were you the girl on the elliptical?" She smiled back, "yes" and we started in on a conversation about working out and how awkward it is when you THINK you recognize someone at the gym, but don't know how to break the ice so you just get on your machine and go. Then she said she thought that, thinking back to last year's event, she thought I looked thinner. Well, not sure that was an accurate memory, but I didn't argue and just went with it. We ended our conversation and I was sort of amazed at how good it felt to be recognized as the person in the fitness room. Like I belonged there :). Like it wasn't so unusual that I should be there :). It was a nice moment.

I was as busy as I thought I'd be the rest of the day and my brain was totally fried by the time I finished counting, but the event was still refreshing, renewing and totally awesome. Yes, I came home exhausted, but in a good way and picked right up where my plan said I should be on Sunday. Next running day is tomorrow and not sure how it will go, but I'll deal with it tomorrow :). For now, I'm just enjoying being back. :)
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Glad you are back! I recently came back to... It is hard to stay on track.

    Keep up the great work!
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    2687 days ago
    Glad to see a new post from ya...
    (I need to keep a long-overdue appt at North-Side-of-Town's Fancy Running Store to get myself outfitted w/new kicks so I can get my butt back on the track again)

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    2687 days ago
    2689 days ago
    Wow - it's been FIVE MONTHS since your last blog!!! Crazy how fast time can fly by and I know I was pleasantly surprised, and shocked, to see your name pop up in the email inbox alerting me to new blog posts! :-)

    Welcome Back and considering it is now Tuesday, I expect a blog about your run this morning to be forthcoming!!!!
    2689 days ago
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    2689 days ago
    I am glad you are back! Awesome for exercising on your retreat!
    2689 days ago
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