addicted to work out gear

***Guess what?!  Last night I had a pretty amazing run.  I didn’t take any walk breaks (although I really wanted to at one point) and only stopped for a 30 second breather once.  In all seriousness, I got chills after I crested the final hill and launched my fist in the air Judd Nelson/Breakfast Club style when I finished.  Remember when I said to celebrate?  Yep, and I texted Meagan as soon as I got home – YAY!

Whenever I get stressed I tend to go on some buying sprees.  They aren’t truckloads of money binges but certainly unnecessary items end up in my shopping bag.  The last few weeks this has definitely been the case!  Luckily, I have begun reigning this in as well as taking a few things back that ultimately don’t match up with my expectations.  I think it’s just that initial, “hmm, I think I need this”!  Then sanity comes back when I get home.  What can I say?  I’m a work in progress.

Do you ever do this?  Come home from the store and look at your items and think WTH was I thinking?!  This has been the case with my Old Navy purchases.  I swear – they have magic mirrors in their dressing rooms!

Nevertheless, I have found some great deals along with finds that are very flattering and even practical.  With my new meds came an increase in sun sensitivity.  Considering I am already from vampire country, this doesn’t help and now being outside for even 5-7 mins leaves me with noticeable redness – eek!

I know, I find this troubling too edward

Did you know that May was national skin cancer awareness month?  The month/blog posts made an impact on me and I’ve stocked up on sunscreen.  Clearly I need more coverage than this so I also bought a “surf shirt” from Old Navy in lew of a bathing suit top.  It fits snug where it should and loose where I prefer it!  What I am not sure of though is do you where a bikini top underneath it?

As mentioned the running tanks are very comfy.  I’ve picked up a two dresses, a fun pair of “boyfriend” style pants (they have little anchors on them!), a nicer pair of khakis and a cute coral flowy shirt.  Everything was majorly on sale so all in all they were good additions to my summer wardrobe.

Target – oh dear Target how you tempt me!  Here I found an adorable stripped maxi-skirt, a chambrey shirt (previously posted about) and a pair of running shorts with little compression shorts attached.  The running shorts are iffy and I will be returning them.

oh dear… this looks a bit familiar

This leads me to my work out gear obsession!  Do you have one too?  After bringing home the shorts yesterday, I realized I need to take stock of what I currently have and what I no longer ever wear.  Some I will sell and some just give away – I have a few pieces that I’ve rarely worn.  Haha, I also have a few pieces that have been worn into the ground and these will just be thrown out – yep a big step for me!  I will say, I tend to think I need more because I have to pay for my laundry and attempt to wait as long as possible in between doing loads.  I really do enjoy doing laundry but not so much in a w/d that I have to share with numerous other individuals (and their germs!).  HOWEVER, my project for this weekend has included doing a bit of un-hoarding.

So, this doesn’t really show the height of the gear… maybe this is better?!

here are a good chunk of my running clothes, although missing some winter gear
here are a good chunk of my running clothes, although missing some winter gear

Here is the pile I am going to sell

more than it looks, I swear!
more than it looks, I swear!

There is a small pile to giveaway.  This is my first go through of the clothes and I know there are a few winter articles I can sell as well.  But seriously, this was tough.  There is a red Marmot jacket that I LOVE in the sell pile.  It just doesn’t fit as well anymore so it needs to find a new home.  I’m working on it!

Here’s to a physically active and industrious Sunday!

thinking – a dangerous pastime!

I’ve been doing a little thinking…

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When I first saw a preview for “Eat, Pray, Love” I knew I would have to see the movie.  However, because most of the time the book is better than the movie, I went out the next day and bought it.  While some people mock this book, I found it very uplifting.  I identify with the Elizabeth, “Liz” Gilbert, the author and her proclivity toward not letting go.

Yes, I am LOUSY at letting go!  Whether I am committed to an idea, a way of life, stuff or a guy, I have a hard time seeing the value of appreciating it while it lasted and then moving forward.  EEK!  Logically, I recognize the importance of this but for the most part I struggle with the emotional aspect of it.

Last night “Eat, Pray, Love” was on tv.  I caught it just as Liz was arriving in India for her time at the ashram.  This is where she meets Richard from Texas and his character (a real life person, I know!) had some great pillow-stitching worthy insights.

1.  It’s okay to mourn the loss of a relationship and miss that person.  But then be over it.  When you think of that person send them “love and light” and then move forward.  We don’t need to minimize the relationship or the person to get over it.  Instead value that person for who they are and be okay with the fact it didn’t work out between the two of you.

2.  Forgive yourself.  It doesn’t matter in what context – just do it.

First of all, I did put my own language to his thoughts on life, FYI!  Now, I would very much like to say neither of these two nuggets of wisdom are EASY.  But I think not doing these things is much harder than not in the long run.  Concentrating on persons from our past and relationships doesn’t allow us to move into something new.  Not forgiving ourselves allows us to concentrate on the negative and doesn’t push us forward to the positive.

I identified with the idea of not forgiving myself in reference to losing fitness and gaining some weight back.  After I lost 85lbs, I SWORE I would never gain weight again.  NEVER!  I was adamant about it to myself and anyone else who would talk to me about it.  I hailed the benefits of losing weight and being active from the rooftops.  I reveled in my new found feelings of body confidence and in how far I had come from my old couch potato ways.  Now?  Well, I feel I have completely failed myself.  I recognize that 15lbs is not the end of the world but it has changed my perception of myself.  I let myself down and this might be harder than the actual weight gain.  Oh and I tend to overanalyze just a bit!

I need to forgive myself for the weight gain.  It’s completely wrapped up in emotions, my mom and meds increasing then switching so it wasn’t like I decided I didn’t care anymore.  I didn’t handle all of these perfectly but I did HANDLE them so I need to give myself some credit for this.  And I need to move on – I know I’ve mentioned this a few times before but I never put it in the context that I was holding myself back because I didn’t think I deserved to be healthy and fit.

Feeling you deserve a healthy body can be tough to embrace when you are dwelling on the negative things.  It definitely sounds great to put some lip service to forgiving yourself but how do you get to that point?!  Or how do you actually put it in action?  In the book, Liz has a hard time getting up and getting through a morning meditation.  Good ol’ Richard from Texas tells her to dedicate the meditation to someone specifically.  I’m sure many of us have read that in order to get through some tough mileage dedicating miles to people can give you the mental boost you need.  I have forgotten about this and want to work on dedicating a morning work out to people in my life.  Currently, my night owl ways and lack of belief in myself keeps my head glued to the pillow.  But would/could this change if I knew I was helping someone (physically or spiritually) important if I got up?  I like this idea.  A lot.

I like to find connections in my life and use these to better myself.  I know I will always have a hard time with letting go – hello, I have some hoarding tendencies to boot!  But acknowledging it and then working on it are two big steps!  And so is accepting this about myself!

Maybe this is a bit deep for a Saturday afternoon read but I am more than a bit intrigued by some of the ideas above.  Not to mention, it has the possibility for a major load off of my shoulders!  Oooo – a new June goal!  Happy weekend everyone!

eye-xcitement and other ramblings

This morning I woke up late (in part due to the Tornado Warning late last night) and was rushing around.  I put my contacts in and my left one was really bothering me.  I tried to grab it but couldn’t.  Then I realized I couldn’t see clearly out of that eye either.  I thought it might have fallen out but couldn’t find it.  Then I thought it had migrated either north or south but again, couldn’t find it.  I figured if it was up/down in my eye I wouldn’t be able to fit another contact in my eye.  Well, turns out you can.  Currently, I’m rocking a migraine and a rogue contact that will NOT come out despite numerous times poking around with my finger.  AAARRRGGGG!

why isn’t this possible?!

My phone is… ALIVE!  I know, there was some heart skipping moments there but so far it seems like it came out relatively unscathed.  There are still might be some sound issues but other than that I have texted, checked the internet and made a phone call so I am feeling much better.  Nevertheless, I use my phone for work so I may have to look into getting a new one.  LovingHomemade said in the UK cell phones are covered by your home insurance – doesn’t that rock?!  Too bad we are not as lucky here.

I like to add a bit of challenge to amy's life!
I like to add a bit of challenge to amy’s life!

I am also super proud of myself!  Yesterday, I did not take a nap!  I am working on my June goals as well as looking over my “May is get my sh%^ together” month.  I will do a bit of a recap but one thing hitting the June goal list is dropping the napping habit.  Seriously, I am like a 5-year-old.  The naps have interfered with many of my goals over the last few months as well as my sleep patterns.  Yesterday, I woke up at 6:30 am for no reason.  Typically, I would have gone back to sleep but nope didn’t happen.  The other typical thing would me to hit the couch for a nappy-poo as soon as I could!  I did neither of these!

On Monday night I hit the streets for a run.  I wanted to do the 4 mile loop again and took my garmin with me this time to make sure the mileage was spot on.  It was, which made me happy.  My legs were definitely tired.  The first two miles are always the hardest for me.  Even when I was in better running shape, the first mile of any race would always hover around 10 mins and then the negative splits would kick into gear.  Sounds nifty but this is a lot of time to make up in order to hit my time goals.  I need to work on putting the pedal to the metal earlier on – especially in a 5k.

I’m sure many of you have seen the Under Armour What’s Beautiful contest/campaign.  It’s about redefining the female athlete.  I appreciate this concept and this campaign.  I can’t even recount how many times I’ve heard my friends say, “well, I’m not a real runner”.  Or “I just work out – I am not an athlete”.  Campaigns like these are important so our ideas of athleticism aren’t centered around one “style” of athlete.

my first bit of encouragment!
my first bit of encouragement!

So, I had to put down my goal.  It’s for approximately 8 weeks.  I thought long and hard about this goal.  Part of me was scared about making the goal too far-reaching and then I would fail.  I thought about making the goal easier but then I could picture myself not working as hard because I could achieve it any ol’ time.  I decided to take some advice from Goldilocks and I think I’ve picked some middle ground.

Yesterday, my average time for the 4 miles was 11:37.  This included two walk breaks but still, it hurts my heart a bit to see that time.  Not because it’s a bad time but because I know I can run faster and used to be able to.  I decided my goal was to have my average pace be 9:30 or lower for four miles.  Maybe a bit conservative?  Maybe not?  I want it to be the average pace for all 4 miles and not one mile here or there.  Not to mention, this is TWO FREAKIN’ MINUTES!  It’s quite a bit actually.  My ultimate goal is for a sub-9 min per mile pace somewhere in my future.  I would love to see a super pretty 8:30 on my garmin and that will come.  I know it.