Saturday, 31 December 2011

Will Do List 2012 by Stephanie Duston



    • Will do List 2012

      ~ Spend less (wasted) time on the computer

      ~ Decrese alcohol intake to only 3 nights/week, maximum of 2 glasses of red wine....too many empty calories there!

      ~ Go to bed by 11 PM & Wake up by 6 AM

       ~ Hit the gym a minimum of 3x/week

      ~ Establish and maintain a running regimen that prepares me for marathon running

       ~ Compete in first 1/2 marathon

      ~ Husband & I will buy bikes and take family bike rides with our girls

      ~ Do more hiking.....as a family

      ~ Go camping (after RV purchase) once a month





Will Do List 2012 by Wanda MacDonald

Will do List for 2012

1. Drink at least 6 glasses of water a day (this is a lot for me as I normally don't drink any.)
2. Take one day at a time.
3. Start doing at least 30 minutes of phyiscal activity every day, increasing this to 60 minutes x 5 days a week as time goes on.
4. When I wake up in the morning, appreciate the fact that I am alive.
5. Register for Johnny Miles 5k in June.
6. Get under 200 lbs.






Will Do List 2012- Permission to Live a Creative Life


“Permission to Live a Creative Life”

 I feel guilty when I want to be creative because I should be 
 doing more important things. Some of them are more important in 
 the scheme of life but I find that I need time to create, 
 because when I do, I don’t think about the things that worry me 
 or make me sad. I concentrate on the craft; whether it be 
 scrapbooking, card making, making mini books or art journaling.

 Some people may say it is mindless but I say it is mindful as it 
 fills my mind with happy, joyous “stuff”, so I don’t have to 
 think about negative or worrisome things.

I need to be creative to keep my sanity; it is that important to me.

 PERMISSION GRANTED.



Will Do List 2012 by Beth Spaven


WILL DO LIST 2012

“Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself”
George Bernard Shaw



RUN AN INJURY FREE ½ MARATHON
TRY ONE NEW HEALTHY ACTIVITY EVERY MONTH
LEARN TO RIDE MY BIKE WITH CONTROL AND CONFIDENCE

VISIT ALL THE ISLANDS OFF VANCOVER ISLAND
ITALY, FRANCE OR CHILI THIS FALL
LEARN TO SPEAK ITALIAN

HELP MY BOYFRIEND GET BACK ON TRACK FINANCIALLY
START A SAVINGS ACCOUNT

COMPLETE MY VERSION OF “JULIE AND JULIA” COOKING CHALLENGE
WASH MY FACE EVERY NIGHT
DATE NIGHT ONCE A WEEK
GIRLS NIGHT/DAY WITH MY BESTFRIEND TWICE A MONTH
BUY ONE THING EACH MONTH BECAUSE I WANT IT NOT BECAUSE I NEED IT

Will do List 2012- Living with Intention



  • Will Do List 2012
    Living With IntentionAnonymously shared 


    * Floss Daily
    * Yoga minimum 30min 6d/week, with a minimum of one class weekly WITHOUT kids that is a full hr (just for ME!)
    * Date night min 1x/month

    * Girls night min 1 every 3 months
    * Be a PRESENT and PATIENT parent to my babies and fur babies
    * practice GRATITUDE with my children, husband, friends and life in general
    * practice MINDFULNESS
    * Strive to stay calm when things get hectic
    * investigate other job opportunities so that I can make an informed decision upon returning to work










Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Y-Von's Will Do List for 2012

  Will Do List 2012

Project 1825: My Food Evolution

Big Sur Full Marathon
Sub 2 hour half
LiveFit/GSP Rushfit
One arm Pull up


Re-engage with my yogi self
365 Yoga daily meditations
Complete my RYT certification by Oct


Grow my blog
Organize a fundraiser a quarter for UA
Once a month a random act of kindness
Gain Financial Control

Weekly date night
Wear heels whenever the opportunity allows
Wear a dress min once a month
Moisturize daily

Home-Purge a room a month and make a design element change
Paris in the Fall
Mexico with Mikey
California


Inspire People to Make a Positive Change in their Life!



Framed and ready to inspire me! 

This year I tried to add some "fun" elements into my will do list! Why not?! Life should always be full of fun!

Now what's yours.......








Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Ramp Up to Big Sur- Week 19

  Wow! 19 weeks.... there is a dose of reality! Thankfully the training is coming along great. After taking the year off and randomly deciding on a 3K run that another marathon would be a great idea I would say I am doing pretty damn good.

  The past few weeks have shown me how we are ever adapting in who we are as runners as in life. Although I am not as fast as I was two years ago; mentally I am a WAY stronger runner! In the past couple weeks during my long runs  I have reflected frequently on my goal  for a sub 2 hour half marathon. I know that physically it was a completely feasible feat yet, each race I would miss and by miss I mean by a small margin. Example: Intact Derby 2:02:01 and the Big Run 2:02:41. Now take into consideration the Big Run is hilly! One of the hills has something to do with blood, sweat and vomit. Now, Intact Derby is known as super fast and flat. How you can have 2 races so different from each other yet end up with results 40 seconds apart? Answer: Mental self sabotage that is how! Which brings me forward to now!!! My goal from the beginning was to ensure that mentally I was better prepared for this full marathon. My goal and focus for my training distances isn't about adapting my body to the mileage but my mental preparedness to those miles. Thankfully this has created the gear shift I needed. When the thoughts are creeping into my head that I am close to make a PB but "my legs hurt" and "oh I will probably just miss it" is replaced with " we got this!, "do not let yourself down", and voilĂ  I have been consistently getting PB's each and every week. These are not lifetime PB's "yet" but they are definitely my new returning to running PB's and at the end of the day a win is a win!

  I created a vision board awhile back as a tool to focus on my upcoming goals in 2012. Well pulling out the cut-outs that I had been collecting in an envelope the following 2 pictures came out together almost exactly as shown. What an amazing motto for my upcoming "Big Sur" marathon!


Monday, 12 December 2011

Ramp Up to Big Sur- Week 20

Week 20 of training brings me to a highlight in my personality...... it appears I am runner who enjoys adversity.

In the last few weeks I have been able to enjoy the weather that Mother Nature has brought in my direction. I will take us to last Wednesday's training run. I worked at 5am and got to watch first hand as the weather changed from worse to worse. As the day continued it got colder, cloudier, slippery and freezing! I work in a large box retail outlet so the thought that one of their managers was intending on going out in the great freezing white outdoors to run a 10K after a long early shift was a little"crazy" to all. As the end of my day neared the weather did not improve. It was even snowier, colder and slippery! I knew this was my chance to prove that mother nature would not win! I donned my winter running attire to the many comments of "Are you seriously running out there"- fingers actively pointing to the great outdoors. "You know its slippery out there", "how far are you going...." etc. On went the remaining gear with a positive attitude and out the door I went.

Now was the time to take that hardest step in running- the first step out the door!  Honestly it was a fabulous run! The temps were only cold enough to freeze my butt cheeks but the rest of me was quite happy after my first initial 2K.  I ran my entire training run with a smile on my face.  As I was running and enjoying the snow coming down and making the only footprints on the fresh snow. I realized this was the most purposeful moment of my day.

 Later I reflected on that run and a few others that I have enjoyed over the years and suddenly I had my realization! My best runs in not only speed, attitude and general fun has usually been when Mother Nature has kicked up her heels and given me some attitude.  On any given run when a little or a lot of wind comes my way I always dig in and speed up! Puddles to jump in only increase the fun factor! One of my all time favourite runs was with a good friend where we experienced freezing rain, snow and crazy temps. At some points we were running in snow that was higher than our knees. Okay maybe not running but trying to as we laughed and enjoyed the moment. I love those moments when you are out there and you can see the look on peoples faces as they drive past- "Is she crazy?!" Hell no! I am a runner and I am enjoying life!

At the end of the day I hope my running shows a part of my personality.... when the going gets tough well you just keep going! One foot in front of the other its that simple!



Sunday, 4 December 2011

Ramp Up to Big Sur- Week 21

  Another week of training successfully completed! I have officially in the last 4 weeks put on over 100km! Big switch from taking this last year off of running. It feels great and I am enjoying the feeling of being committed to a goal. The whole negative side affect to all of this- Mother Nature's odd creative ideas to add a little interest to my runs....

This weeks blog is all about the kilometre....one single kilometre. It amazes me the emotions that can enter the mind and body all within one kilometre. Mid week was a difficult run for me. Mixture of a weird work schedule consisting of me not sleeping for 25 hours due to working an overnight then power sleeping for a few hours. Upon waking up from my power nap I immediately climbed into my running gear and stepped into the great white outdoors in freezing temperatures. Winds bringing with it a mixture of freezing rain and snow. Wind that regardless of the direction you were running it was coming right at your face. Yep it was a completely idyllic run! I couldn't have asked for more from Mother Nature. Thankfully it was a  nice short 10K! (I love how that sounds- short LOL!) 3km left of my run and I met that magical emotional kilometre. I was in my zone, my body was in its stride, my brain was quietly going along for the ride. It was all good!  I finally decided "this isn't that bad", "I got this" all was good then I hit 2.5km. Instantly I did not want to play any more. My face was frozen, my legs were tired and well lets just face it I was plain tired and grumpy! 2km left everything changed: The sun came out, the wind let up and the song- oh yes the song " I've Got Soul but I'm Not a Soldier- Killers" woo! hoo! it was happy times again!

 The power of the mind and the minute is an incredible experience. Motto learned from this week every minute is a new minute so if one sucks hold out for a moment because its all about to change!






Tuesday, 29 November 2011

"Will Do Lists"

   We are getting close to that time of year when everyone starts thinking about their new year's resolution!
I am sure there are lots of others who think the same as me of New Year's resolution- a commitment that if they don't screw it up the first day due to being hungover from the night before it quickly looses its zest within a week or two, if you really stretch it maybe a month. Then its all over until the next year.

  I was inspired 2 years ago not for a New Year's resolution but a "Will Do List" for the entire year. This funny enough coincided with my year long challenges which yes they were part of my 'will do lists'. A 'will do list' is very different than a New Year's resolution. First off New year's resolutions are traditionally unrealistic with no  real plan in place to make them happen. Remember without a plan a goal is only a wish. Besides its hard to make a commitment that is going to last for entire year. Believe me I know! I am about to head into a crazy one in this upcoming year but that is another blog!

 A 'will do list' can contain ideas from all parts of your life: family, career, fitness, health, friends, activities, interests, learning, new hobbies! You name it! Think about what is the most important part of your life or perhaps there is something new you want to introduce into your life. What things if you focused on them for a year could make a huge impact on your life. That's a 'will do list!

Let's have some fun with this- Let's pretend an item on our 'will do list' is to reach out and contact an old friend. Awesome! Now let's take it a step further- remember we have a year. How about contacting one old friend a month. Simple right! Phones work two ways and we always have facebook! In the next year you could reconnect with 12 people that this time next year will be a part of your life. Who doesn't have room for more friends?!  The trick is to commit to it! Get it on paper! Share with your friends. Inspire others to join you!

This last year I wanted to make sure my goals were somewhere that I could see them so I printed them off and placed them in a nice frame-  Trick: place it somewhere that you will see it everyday! Imagine having your 'will do list' framed and in the bathroom so that you get a peek at each and every morning. Now don't tell me that won't help with the focus!



This year I have started on my "Will do List" and decided to create a vision board. It was a fun adventure going through my crazy collection of magazines (yes I have a problem). On top of it all I was inspired by a picture I saw and randomly decided that it needed to be included on my "will do list" . Go ahead, act like a kid again and have fun with pictures and scissors.



( See the crazy woman there; the one ready to do a pull up with one arm)
That is going on my "Will do List' oh yeah baby!!!

   Have fun and create your own "Will do List" and even better share it with me and many others! We all love the inspiration!

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Ramp up to Big Sur- Week 22!

   Wow! Week 22- well what do I say about this week?! Well thankfully I have started my training far in advance that I have allowed myself the ability to have a rest week every 5-6 weeks. As I mentioned last week I got really sick and that pretty much took over most of last week. Thankfully to my pre- thinking and pre- planning I am suppose to be enjoying a rest week this week..... well no longer! I got to have a restful week sick as a dog with that damn flu last week so this week its all back to work. My mileage from last week has quickly been transferred over to this week and voila' here we are....

  The night before this weeks long run I heard rumour of the weather changing! I live in one of the windiest cities in Canada so weather change and your running schedule have a huge interest in the other. Weather report dictated a 80K plus wind..... yowzer! Upon waking up this morning I quickly looked at the weather and it was a beautiful 10 degrees oh yeah and at this point only 18km wind! I was in and I knew I had only a small window before that would change..... on went the gear and out the door I went. My run was one of the slowest runs of my career but I am okay with that considering the rough week I had prior. Funny enough it was one of the slowest runs of my career but at the same time I missed most of my minute breaks during my 10 n 1 run. No need- no desire! Just my nice slow steady pace- I will take it and consider it another successful run!!

Turn of events- I mentioned earlier the weather.... well she came out like a fierce storm. I believe the winds hit 100K today! You could not physically stand in one spot unless you were holding onto something. It was utter craziness! After a grocery shop and incredibly interesting time getting the cart to the truck and holding it  in place while loading our wares. Then home James! Upon getting home we looked outside and there was this weird wind storm picking up... really dark?! At first I thought it was a hurricane en route, wrong again! Lethbridge was hit with multiple grass fires and one was just outside my backyard. Grass fires and 80 plus winds- no big deal! Holy!! Evacuation  Alerts and the whole bit! So I question you- evacuation alert- what would you pack?! As my pictures are all safely saved on my laptop ready to go at a given notice my next stop for what needed to be rescued- my running medals! and not only mine but my Mom and Grandfathers. Those were worked for, earned and truly irreplaceable. Everything else is a great reason to go shopping once all is said and done! Obviously there were a few other sentimental items but the medals were the first of my concern! I am so proud of the medals that my Mom and Grandfather gave to me. How many people can say they ran a half marathon with their parent and then be the grandchild that gets those medals?! After a crazy emotional evening this runner is done and needs to get a good nights sleep! Maybe I will dream about my future medals?!


Sunday, 20 November 2011

Ramp Up to Big Sur- Week 23

Well week 23 has been a week of its own....




   I started the week off strong with last Sunday's run, a great time at Monday's kickboxing class then.... it was about an hour after kickboxing I realized I was tired not normal tired. My body was exhausted. Weird! I just racked it up to the start of the training and my body adjusting. Later that night at 11:30pm to be exact I woke up to my throat completely raw, nose stuffed up and knew I was sick. Damn! Tues I managed to squeak out one of my friends daily fitness challenge. The 20 burpies did not feel good but I got them done and the other forms of entertainment that were attached. I knew I should have started with the burpies. Wed came around and I didn't feel a 100% but I didn't feel bad either. Now comes in the test! Yes the test! Anyone who is into fitness knows when you are not feeling good there is a test- "The Neck Test" if your symptoms are from the neck up your good to go, if your symptoms are from the neck down you need to take it easy and possibly a break. Okay most likely a break is the true answer. On Wed I passed the neck test so woo hoo! off I went for a short training run. I took my puppies so it would be a nice pace and I wouldn't push my luck. After my wonderful run on Wednesday my week progressed rapidly downhill. Cold/flu is definitely in my body. I have lost my voice for 3 days- ( insert cheering here). No workouts completed Friday or Saturday minus very short walks with my girls due to freezing temps!! Now Sunday is my long distance training run.....what to do, what to do?! I took the neck test and unfortunately I do have this slight feeling of someone physically standing on my chest. Yet I could not stand the thought of another idle day. Plan B- spin bike it is!! I have learnt over the last couple of days that I have energy for fleeting moments so I decided to break up my ride. Nothing too exciting but I rode my bike 3 times for 15 min intervals. Excitedly each interval I covered more distance and needless to say faster. Honestly it felt so good to sweat- My image was the sweat taking the toxins away!!! I will know later if what I did was a good idea but for today it made me feel just a little bit human again! 



Sunday, 13 November 2011

Ramp Up to Big Sur- Week 24


   The last 2 Saturdays my legs have gone into my workouts screaming at me! Last Saturday I rode my bike and my legs were burning through the whole process. I had made a conscious decision to change my training run into a bike ride to give my legs, knees and hip flexor's a bit of a break. While spinning away I seriously questioned my thought process as I felt that running would have hurt way less than how I was feeling on that bike. Regardless of how I was feeling the pain was put to the back burner and the mileage was completed. Fast forward to this Saturday- again conscious decision to miss a training run and instead take on the entertainment of being able to hit a Kickboxing  class! Yet again another brilliant idea! Jumping squats, jumping lunges, walking lunges not only in forward motion but throw a few backwards ones in there. I believe there was more torture that was thrown at us but the brain shut down at some point and just did vs. think!!! I do recall during one of the jogging sections actually hitting my legs with my fists to try and relieve the tightness! Needless to say both Saturday nights I questioned how the morning run was going to go..... 


 Believe it or not in both cases my runs went awesome! The first couple K's my body was trying to find its stride and loosen up. Today I heard the time on the completion of my first km and was pleasantly surprised. I had no idea that I was actually running anywhere near that pace- woo!hoo! Then came the prompt for time and pace at the 4K and woo!hoo! yet again ahead of my usual pace! Speaking of the 4K mark someone must have sent Mother Nature a text that I was having a rocking good run! So "BAM" she showed up in the mode of a horrific wind! She slammed me around for a good half  K then felt guilty for it and gave me a friendly forward shove along the path for a good 0.25K! Very kind of her I thought?! Then randomly as my pace felt great I would get smacked again..... funny this time it was never followed up with a gentle shove in the forward direction. Just repeatedly against me or directly to the side! There is something about running in the wind that brings out the Inner Warrior in me and I go faster! That feeling of someone saying "Oh I am sorry. Is this wind getting in the way of your run?!" just gets my gggrrrrr! Now creme de la creme I hit my 9K mark with 1K left to go and again I get my update. Hell yeah! I am on course for a PB for the 10K!!! My mistake this time I clearly thought this way too loudly and Mother Nature reared her ugly wind storm again! This time I was actually hit so hard that I took two paces backwards! "Hell no I have 1K to go and you are not stealing my PB" so on I pushed while she pushed me back and I am very proud to say "I WON"! New PB created today! This is not my overall PB ever but it is my new PB since getting back into running and I am one happy runner! 



Sunday, 6 November 2011

Big Sur Ramp Up week 25

                               First official Week of Training!! 
                     "Bring It" was this weeks motto....

 Armed with my new Lulu gloves, I Phone with Nike GPS and  tunes- week one of training begins...


   I have know since the beginning that training this time is all about the mental game. The miles will just happen but your head has to be in the game and keep you going when everything else is yelling "Stop"! This is my tool to convince me that winter running is all part of the process to help me have a good marathon.  Well we wouldn't want Mother Nature to fail on her part so..... last Sunday was a great teaser to the start of my training. Beautiful, sunny, gorgeous day minus the 25K winds but whatever I live in Lethbridge its all part of the course. This Sundays long run  was initially postponed to happen later in the day. Something about -10 didn't excite me but something about -4 made me run right out the door. Its all about enjoying the honeymoon phase of your training.



   My body continues to amaze me at its ability to remember. I worked hard to become a runner! Every second running was a concious effort.... seriously!! and yet here I am with basically having taken a full year off and running 10-14K and feeling awesome! Thank you! Thank you! to my body and legs for committing with me and making this happen! The new theory is..... if I can go out with no training and bang off a 14K run whats a little Marathon with some actual training! We shall see how well that carries me later- LOL!









Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Big Sur Marathon....

Dedication time is coming...... Yowzer! Big Sur is not that far away! as a matter of  fact it is 27 weeks away! 27 freakin' weeks! are you kidding me- LOL!!!

I have decided to have October as my fun-play month! This month is about exercising when the passion hits me. Its actually quite amazing how much fun a run is when there is no pressure on time or distance. I need to remember how to hold onto this feeling when the winter and the long distance hits! November the training and mental preparedness starts! Oh yeah my January is going to be a blast full of 26-29K runs! whoop! whoop! Bring on the New Year's resolution peeps to run with me.... Hill training starts in January too! Best time of year for it- at least I won't have to worry that it will be too hot for hills. I recently started up kickboxing although I have been sidelined this last week due to an accidental kick to the hand. I love it and in my inspirational moments of getting out for one of those non committal runs I have found the kickboxing warm up to have been a HUGE help to my running and not losing anymore stamina.

Today was commitment day to figuring out my schedule. I have learnt that my body responds well then crashes so I am taking advantage of the extra weeks I am putting into my training calendar and giving myself rest weeks (novel idea).  I believe I have a manageable training program ready to go.... official start is Oct 30th!

My plan is to blog about my adventures on training for this Marathon experience!!! please as my friends help keep me in line! Yes a nudge and a full out shove may be required during this process....

BIG SUR here I come.......

Friday, 12 August 2011

Update and a Check In

After my last blog I knew it was time to take some serious action. I have been watching for quite awhile now the Tone It Up Girls and had my interest peeked but left it at that. With my new outlook and the need for some structure I thought now might be the time to get involved and jump in! So did I?! Oh I did! It appears the Tone It Up Girls have a nutritional plan and in that nutritional plan also includes a 7 day slimdown. Well surprise in exactly 7 days from when I jumped in I had a family wedding so typical Yvonne style- why not?! Right then and there the next day I was starting.  Talk about a shock to the system. Going cold turkey on all your bad habits lets you learn a lot. Third day in "headache" and I am sure it is was withdrawals from the bad foods. Bad food and maybe the red liquid that goes nicely with said foods. Honestly I am not a horrible eater in comparison to some so  I could not imagine the withdrawals that some people would go through- youch! 5 days in and 5 inches smaller already. Additional lesson learned-portion control! Yes people you have no idea how much we over consume!!! I completed my 7 days with zero slip ups- I was so proud of myself and felt so much better than I had the week before. Yeah!!! I felt better both inside and outside! That every so great feeling of "I'm back"

Part of this program also includes the morning "Booty Call". You jump out of bed  a half hour earlier so you can get in a workout! Yep sounds like torture especially if you have some of the really early shifts that I have. Well my little Kamie (Maltese/chihuahua puppy) thinks this morning booty call is the greatest creation in life! As a matter of fact on a few mornings when I may have slid back into old patterns she was there in my face, panting and smiling ready to go. When the magic words came out-  "Booty Call" and she blasts to the front door you know your done. On our morning booty call we visit a park that I am sure my puppies believe has been created for their sole use. I started off with just the usual half hour stroll then creativity hit! I now throw in a few walking lunges, I have been known to drop to the ground and complete push ups or even a full set of ab workout. This morning a set of frog squats were thrown in. Meanwhile my girls are having the time of their life. On these morning walks I make sure to take time for some Nature Appreciation. One morning someone had placed a sunflower between the slats on one of the benches, another morning my Kama fell right into the pond in the middle of the park. All I heard was this big "splush" and suddenly her jumping back out drenched right to the top of her head. Every morning there is some kind of adventure and I use these as my motivation. When I find that something special I always remind myself "if you didn't get up for your morning booty call you would have missed out on this". A definite way to create motivation to get up early again the next morning!


I know it all sounds like roses but there are still definitely the challenges. We have travelled and we have had back to back company. At first I did a great job of protecting my morning booty call and being able to adapt the food I wanted to eat. As time goes on your just start to slide back to old habits! My challenge now is to figure out what it looks like to stay focused with your goals while maintaining the role of hostess. With the huge goals that I have coming up  insert>Big Sur Marathon<  I need to ensure that I keep my focus and not lose sight. Luckily I know I have amazing friends and family who are encouraging of my goals and will understand that I need to keep these things as a top priority. Funny I think I solved my own dilemma! Strange how you can put something out in words and there is your answer! Wow! Thanks world for the light bulb moment who knew it was such a simple solution?!

Thank you very much to Karena and Katrina- Tone It Up for giving me that nudge I needed!
http://www.toneitup.com/index.php
Thank you to all my friends and family in advance if I am sometimes selfish in fitness and nutritional needs. Remember you can always join me ;-)
http://www.bsim.org/site3.aspx

Monday, 18 July 2011

The Ongoing Challenges:

It's happened in the last few weeks I am finding myself worried when the camera comes out. Not all the time but once in awhile I catch myself doing the mental check- are you sitting/standing properly, suck it in, what about the lumps and bumps. I have not been this person for 10 years and here I am almost that person again. I say almost because thankfully I am catching this early. There is a picture of me almost 20 years ago and I don't even have to physically hold it in my hand. I know exactly where I am in this picture, what I was wearing, who I was with and worst part- I know what I looked like! This picture was such a horrible awakening for me that I hid it away. Once I lost my weight I re found this picture and that was the moment when it was emblazoned in my memory. No I am not posting this picture later- I seriously am WAY too embarrassed to every admit that was me. I am not sure that mentally I am able to convince myself that I was ever that person. There are times when that girl in the picture literally haunts me. Makes picking a salad vs a burger and fries a really easy choice when she is around!

I have always struggled with weight since I was a kid. My Mom has completed pretty much every diet out there and I usually joined in when I was younger. If I recall our first shared diet was when I was 6. Not because I needed to but at that age it honestly sounded like a fun thing. Weight Watchers had a pretty wicked fake banana split in its day.  I knew the whole calorie in calorie out! I knew how many calories were in most foods without having to look at a label. I have seen Shape magazine since I was little. Oh and Rachel McLish for those too young to know her- google! She brought what a fit woman should look like to mainstream against all the amazon woman of the day. Loved her and was clueless on what the steps would look like for me to be my own version of that. (Appears I still am a tad clueless). As the majority of world I did the usual had two kids at a very young age, got married, stayed home, lost most of my friends and replaced them with prefab food aka Costco specials. I shopped at those stores that lie to you about your size. You know the ones if you are or have been over weight. Most stores you can't get a 13/14 past your knees and these stores they fly on then you fight with the zipper but at least they are up. Or the fat persons blessing one size fits all! Basically maternity wear but hey its all about denial! As the years went on I become more unhappy and gained more weight. Through most of this I still worked out, had a gym membership- I could probably lift more then than I can  now. It was the food! I had the fitness lifestyle but depression hit the second I was out of the gym and off to the fridge you go. I have never been one to fear the fitness side of things- I  have successfully completed a marathon, several half marathons, take on "Insanity" workout with a smile. Push Ups hated them so what do I do; create a challenge to conquer them. The fitness side is so much easier than the bigger picture of eating what you need to fuel that fitness.  Little did I know that regardless of my efforts I was self sabotaging due to the fact I was miserable in my marriage. Once enough became enough and I decided to take my life by the horns everything in the weight world changed and boy did it change. In something like 6-8 weeks I went from a size 13/14 in the special stores to a size 2/4 in any store. I literally would lose a dress plus a week. It sounds like a fantasy but honestly there was days that I was scared of the speed everything was happening. Of course everyone around me was happy to see me the lose the weight but it was always followed with- "it's because she is under so much stress" , "it won't last she will gain it back." Yeah well I easily maintained that weight for almost 2 years then went up to a whopping healthy sized 6 (LOL) and have pretty much stayed there until recently. This winter definitely did something to me what I have no idea?! I have decided that it chemically screwed around with my mind and body. My professional diagnosis. I have been aware since the fall of last year that the weight demons have been close by as my clothes have gradually gone from uncomfortable to in some cases not fitting. I have no idea weight wise what I have gained as I am a "NO" scale person- they are danger!!! Clothes tell you everything you need to know if your listening. Well body I am listening..... I am hearing the hints and trying to put the pieces together. I am stopping the bus early and we are turning it around.  I have recently rededicated myself to my running in a minor (LOL) fashion- I registered for the Big Sur International Marathon spring of 2012! Oh yeah baby! So if now is not the time to fuel the machine I don't know when is.

 I want to be me!!!
 I want to be the me that was confident in my own skin because I had finally found the true me and owned it!

Monday, 4 April 2011

Reuniting with my Inner Runner

Yesterday it finally happened!!! It was late afternoon, the sun was shining and mother nature was giving another tease that spring might actually appear. I was enjoying my new ride heading off to work when out of the corner of my eye I saw it..... a runner! Then another one and another one..... when yes it finally happened. That flutter of envy!! If your a runner you know the one I am referring to. Where you become mesmerized for a fleeting moment and you are there with that runner. Your body, your mind wants to be there on the road, trail whatever it may be. It has been a very long time since I have felt that flutter in my soul. Never one to deny myself of what I truly desire today became the day that the runners were laced, the I pod loaded and lululemon graced  me with her glory to take on the streets and parkways of Lethbridge. Then reality..... I have not ran on pavement other than a short "Girls want to go fast" moment. My line on the treadmill "this is boring" so I jump on my spin bike. Well today let me know it wasn't boring it was hard! So much for the theory- "3K! Whats the point in even tying up my laces?!" as I ran 5K wishing I was only running 3K. As I am plodding along thinking this will be one of the longest 5K's of my life I am quickly reminded of what the beginning stages of running felt like. I originally decided to try running as I believed it was something I honestly was not going to be able to do. Well surprise when you commit to something anything is possible. When I started a minute was torture..... well today it took 10 mins before I was really whiny. When I started running the concept of a negative split was uh?! you just go all out and hope that you can finish strong. Well today a true negative split the first half sucked! yep sucked! By the halfway mark my body started to remember what it was suppose to do. Lo and behold by the end the old runner in me was taking over. At no point am I going to say this was an easy run and I spent a lot of the run hoping to not run into another a runner as that would be embarrassing. Actually it might sound like this- "S***T do you think they saw me take a walk break?!"  Although I have a way to go before I am back to being the runner I was the love what you hate runner still resides inside me. Straight, flat and a break from the wind my attitude "this is okay!" Then a hill "Oh yeah baby!!" Then a hill and wind "Hell yeah I was made for this crap"

My PR for a 5K sub 24 mins. Today's comeback 5K 32 mins and 42 secs. Thank goodness there was not a lot of runners out there and for the one's who were. Thank you for running in the opposite direction :-)

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

The Mental Game of Fitness.....

A quick background check.... a year ago my first description of myself would have included the words "runner". I committed myself hardcore to running in early spring of 2008, hey who's kidding it was the beginning of the year afterall race season starts in the Spring. From 2008 to the fall of 2010 I have completed in 4 half marathons, more 5/8/10K's then I could even count, and the creme a la creme a full marathon in the fall of 2009. Lets suffice it to say I went close to 3 years always having a goal race permanently looming.  I
loved every minute of it. Nothing like training for a half marathon running 20 KM's in minus 20 something temps. Running in blizzards, the heat of summer looking for sprinklers. I was one of those people you drove by and thought is that girl crazy and I would have proudly responded "hell yeah"!

Jumping back to the current and now.... I have lost my fitness edge?! I find it interesting how its there and the engine is burning hard and you can't contain it and then one day you turn around and realize some how you lost your fitness mojo. Although my training has lacked the enthusiasm and spirit I have consistently kept a training calendar and have continued to workout without the spark. You still have those moments where you feel yeah its coming back then the next round of burpies remind you that your not so hot!

My current training program consists of Jillian Michael's Making the Cut training program where I get to have my ass and every other body part handed to me on a daily basis. I don't remember what it feels like to walk up a flight of stairs without the words "owh!" "owh!". Which brings me to today- As I was holding boat pose and attempting to distract myself from the torture using my yogi drishti powers I found myself staring intently at all my race medals. There I am holding boat pose and just taking in all that I have accomplished. This person who is struggling to complete 20 burpies is up there in with those medals. I have spent the last few months fully aware of my level of fitness and how it has been slowly sliding away from me.... I had a really bad flu back in November and it has been my crutch to explain away my lack of fitness ability. Now that I am in my meditative state and yes still holding boat pose the questions start: "is my issue really recovering from that flu?" ' Is there a reason I got that flu?" I believe there was warning signs that I  missed along the way.The whole actually being excited about not having a goal race-  that wasn't a hint! The fact my heart didn't quicken when I read an inspiring quote involving running- that wasn't a hint. I was no longer envious of the peeps on the side of the road running along while I was off doing errands- that wasn't a hint.  As my flu has remained my fall guy for me in my struggles to regain my fitness levels I have had to reconsider and yes I am still in boat pose. Thankfully once inspiration hits I am pretty quick thinker.

 My last year of running was all about getting the elusive sub 2 hour half marathon. I wanted it and it was
going to happen!  2010 was a big year for me. I created my first "Will do List" at the beginning of the year and just kept checking off the list as the year went.... unfortunately the sub 2 was the only thing on my list that that didn't get checked off.  Here is where we head full circle back to the Power of the Mind- let me take you to the Big Run in Calgary last May. I would say it was near the top of my running game if not at my personal best. I was completely set up to succeed and accomplish my goal of a sub 2 hour half marathon. Training was done and I was extremely fortune to have a friend stay with me during the race to be my own personal pace bunny... Jeff I will never ever forget what you did for me that day!! At the beginning of the race all is good actually all was really good! How could it not be, armed with an I Pod of good tunes a personal pace bunny who was also my personal photographer for the event. Great weather and eager to go...for the beginning few K's we were are ahead of pace and life was grand. Jeff had me on track and this was really going to happening and yep you guessed it the big BUT... who the hell forgot to mention frickin hills and I mean hills. Not one or two but several and all after the 16k mark I think. I have selective amnesia on portions of this race. Then look another hill and then surprise Jeff tells me all is okay only one more hill left and then the words "heartbreaker hill" or "vomit hill" or something to do with blood....comes out of his mouth. Are you kidding me..... anyways life goes on and so shall I end result I kicked ass and had a fabulous run but missed my sub 2 yep missed her by a whole whopping 2 mins (2:02:34). Sadly this was also a personal best that I did not take the time to celebrate. Too much time spent thinking about the goal vs the accomplishment. Now we head to Edmonton for the ING- fabulous race. I mean fabulous, tag name to this race "Super fast and flat" for someone with a time to beat it is like music to your ears. Here we are raring to go and excited this one is my opportunity! I can't go wrong on this one, it's going to happen.... and then as it happens in all races they start to get harder, the body starts to fight the process but no this is my chance. Chanting to myself "super fast and flat, Yvonne". End result another 2:02 finish  (2:02:01) I have a race with hills to no tomorrow 2:02 then I hit the super fast and flat and 2:02. Now please tell me that your  mind is not a factor. Talk about a fear of reaching your goal. It is the only answer I can see. Wow what if I made my goal...seriously brain get out of the way of my success. Here I stand today finally, fully realizing although I am an athlete and some consider me crazy for the things that I do in a physical aspect. I am fully capable of pushing myself to physical limitations, a drive to train yet come race day my mind doesn't allow me to succeed. I know my body is fully capable of a sub 2 hour yet mentally I can not get out of my own way to make it happen; yet?! As true with running we learn a lot about ourselves while out there pounding the pavement and here is my a ha moment.... where else does the power of mind hold me back? Although I am feeling much more enlightened about my challenges ahead  I am still unsure of what the steps are from here.... admitting you have a problem is the first step right?!