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Friday, April 29, 2011

Rode on the street today!

Just got back from doing a ride at lunch.  Good weather today - sunny & 70 - while tomorrow is going to be craptastic - snowy & 40.  The hubs suggested we take advantage while its nice so he brought the bikes up at noon.  This was a really big deal for me to ride out on the road.  A little backstory here.....

...once upon a time, many, many, many, many (many) moons ago I used to do sprint triathlons.  I really enjoyed them.  I love to swim.  Easy to get into a groove and very comfortable in the water.  Was never a great runner but did do cross-country for several years in high school.  So, when I was shedding for the wedding (14 years ago), I did a couple races.   Until one fine spring day down in Austin, Tx.  It was just a few weeks 'til my next race & I'd really trained a lot; had high goals to better my time, worked on the bike/run transition, etc.  I was starting to get really into it.  That particular day was a bike day - all good until I got hit by a car.  I did not enjoy this.  Nothing truly serious - a lady was pulling out of an apartment complex and didn't look both ways when she pulled out.  She wasn't going real fast & neither was I but still car vs. bike is never a good combination.  I slammed in to her left panel right by the front wheel.  I went up on the hood, she hit the brakes & I went flying back.  Pinky & ring finger on left were totally mangled, outer part of left hand was broken and huge gash on right elbow.  All in all, not that much damage.

But still.....I never did that race & I've haven't really ridden out on the road since then.  So, obviously the scars went deeper than just a few stitches.    I thought about all of this for the first time while we were out today.   Today's ride was quite nice - wide shoulders or dedicated bike lanes everywhere (yea, Colorado!) on rural roads outside of Boulder with little traffic.  However, the storm front did move in during on our ride and the wind got fierce.  There were several times I was afraid that I was going to get pushed out into the street.  Yep, it did freak me out a bit.

As we were riding along, the hubs asked how I was doing.  Now, he doesn't think my earlier accident was all that big of a deal...perhaps a bit of Chloe drama, but, hey, I bear the scars. I'm entitled!  I told him I was a little spooked but I could do it.  That was my response - I could face this fear (a fear mostly in my head) & I could do it.  Not sure I would have said that 45lbs ago.

As I get back into shape, I'm back to swimming and then the purchase of my beautiful new bike, obviously, the thought of doing triathlons has crossed my mind more than once.  A couple of hurdles - this thing about riding out on the road with cars is a serious concern for me.  I feel like I took a big, positive step in the right direction today.  For the first time, I believe if I got serious about a race & really started training, I could face the bike work.  More than just going to spin class or sitting on a bike in the gym.  Also, the hubs is a little crazy and loves "centuries" aka 100-mile bike races through the mountains of Colorado.  He's signed up for a couple this year &, now that I'm all geared up, he's started dropping hints about me joining him (he wouldn't have said that 45lbs ago!).  Riding on the street with cars is something I need to get comfortable with.

While we're on the tri-topic, another big hurdle for me is the running piece.  Like I said earlier, I suck at it.  A more pressing concern is that I am trying to protect my knees.  All my workouts up to now - swim, bike, yoga, pilates, etc - are all low impact.  Thats deliberate since my knees, ankles & hips ached so much when I started this journey.    I recently set a goal to start running once I get to 60lbs down.  The thinking goes that I'll be putting a lot less stress on my joints plus adding running in the mix will help me tackle those last 20lbs of my journey.   So this my immediate goal - lose 15lbs so I can get to my next goal.


Monday, April 25, 2011

Happy bday to me!

Last Wednesday was my bday.  I turned 39. sigh.  More on this in a bit...

Monday morning stats (it ain't pretty)
weigh-in: 180.8lbs
up 1b from last week.  my first gain in this journey - at least this time I noticed!
I'll admit that I've lost a bit of focus in the last week or two...snacking, adding back carbs, not enough exercise, not enough water.....guess I need to jump back on the band wagon.

My bday was also my 4-month bandiversary so here are pics & measurements:

12/20/10 - start

4/20/11 - down 45lbs

12/20/10 - start
4/20/11 - down 45 lbs

 I see the most difference on the side shots - maybe because I don't spend a whole lot of time staring at my ass.  These pants are also way loose - still too afraid of skin tight anything.  These pics help remind me that I am making progress....but I also have more to go!  I am so off to the gym tonight.

I'm also taking measurements every other month.  For any newbies out there - I know pics & measurements are hard in the beginning but I highly recommend doing it!  Look at this success!

                         12/18/10               2/20/11               4/20/11
wrist                     6.5"                     6.25"                   6.0"
forearm                11.75"                 11.0"                  10.5"
upper arm            14.0"                   13.0"                  12.75"
ankle                     9.5"                     9.0"                    8.75"

calf                       18.5"                  16.75"                 16.0" 
upper thigh          28.0"                    23.5"                  23.25"
neck                    15.75"                  14.5"                  14.0"  
boobs                   44.0"                   41.0"                  39.5"
just below boobs  38.5"                   36.0"                  34.0"
waist                    39.0"                    34.0"                  32.5"
belly button          44.5"                    35.0"                  34.0"
hips                      48.5"                    41.5"                  40.5"
butt                      49.0"                     44.0"                  42.0"  

So, I'm another year older.  I did have a fantastic bday!  I played hooky from work so I could spend the entire day hanging out with the hubs.  He really is my favorite person in the whole world.  Gross - I know!  I travel so much that I just cherish the little moments with him.  We golfed in the morning (it was freezing!!! I was wrapped up in a blanket in the golf cart).  We both totally suck - even after lessons last year - but its still always fun.  Went for some hot chocolate to warm up & then played cards for a few hours til the kid came home from school.   I always work late (or now, at the gym late) so I wanted to go to a happy hour.  It may not sound like much but it was a treat for me to hang out at a local pub, have a few drinks, eat dinner & still be home around 8pm.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Loving the new toy

weekly weigh-in: 179.8lbs
only half a pound drop from last week - boo!
I'm in the 170s - yeah!!!

Disappointed, yes, but not too worried because I know I did great last week.  How do I know??? My new toy - Polar FT7 heart rate monitor.  Here it is in all its glory again:

I wore it all week during workouts - kickboxing, body pump, spin.  Some of my worst fears did come true....calories burned in MyFitnessPal are definitely inflated!  Especially for cardio...for example, according to MFP 1hour of "Kickboxing" should burn 823 calories but per my HRM I only burned 655.  MFP is 25% high.  But for body pump, MFP is way low.  According to MFP, 1 hr "Strength Training" burns 255 calories while my HRM shows 355.   I usually do Kickboxing/Body Pump back-to-back so I think it all evens out in the end.  But I do really enjoy the instant feedback.  I can even wear it swimming.  How cool is that?  I swam 80 laps on Saturday.  The pool at my gym is 25m so 80 laps is 2000meters which is about 1.25miles.  Heart rate was consistently 70-75% of max & HRM helped keep me on pace so it only took me about 60 minutes to swim those 80 laps.  Love that!

My big bday gift this year is this beauty:

Feeling so spoiled!
It is a Specialized Ruby Comp - a *really* nice women's road bike.  All carbon fiber, upgraded shifters, fancy tires, etc.  This is not a man's bike shrunken down - it's a bike built for women.  It feels sooooo comfortable and light.

Of course, there is a backstory husband was not super thrilled at the idea of lapband.  He was worried about the surgery, complications, side effects, whether I'd stick with it or fail like every other weight loss attempt, if it was money down the drain, etc, etc, etc.  I knew that I could not do this journey without his support - it was critical to me that he be a part of it.  Now, we've been together a long time & I've learned how to manage him pretty well.  I'm also under no illusions that he knows how to manage me just as well.

So, in order to get his support for this effort, I dangled a little bribe.  My husband loves to bike!  He rides a ton, has cycled a couple 100-mile races and he loves the Tour de France.  He watches every single day of that race.  Personally, I think watching paint dry would be more interesting but he loves it.  Biking is what he uses to stay in shape & he's spent many years trying to get me more involved.  I think he has this vision in his head where the whole family goes out for a long ride through the Colorado mountains.  A few years ago, we compromised & I bought a cruiser bike.  You know - seat big enough for my big ass, wide handle bars & a wicker basket in front.  Very comfy but not built for speed (kinda like me, actually).

I know that one of his dream vacations is to do a bike tour through Europe and even ride a few stages of the Tour de France or ride the Italian Alps.  I spent a long time avoiding this possibility because there was no way in hell I was going to squeeze these thighs into some spandex, try to balance on some teeny road bike and strut around Europe next to all those skinny French women.  BUT! I did make a deal with him - if he supported me & I got to a certain weight within a certain time then we would go to Europe next summer & do his bike tour.  

Flash forward to now....I regularly do spin classes, I followed drs orders, I've lost a ton of weight so far, I'm getting fit & healthy.  He also has been super supportive (my personal fav was "I'll eat whatever you cook, hon").  As soon as he saw how serious I was with the lapband he got very excited about our deal.  But, first he insisted I needed to train on a real bike.  He spent weeks researching bikes before choosing the Ruby for me.  This is how it became my big bday gift this year.

We went for a 40-mile ride yesterday.  It was amazing.  We live just northwest of downtown Denver. Our ride took us west to Golden (where we had lunch), then we cut across the northern 'burbs to the east side of town, through Commerce City and then back downtown to the huge REI.   REI to my house is only 2miles but its all up hill - which is harsh after 40miles & wind gusts of 20MPH!  

There is a very extensive network of bike trails throughout the region & we were able to do this entire ride without riding on the street.  Rather than riding next to speeding cars & breathing in exhaust fumes, I rode along the creek and amongst the trees.  I saw ducks and geese, kids playing baseball, folks walking their dogs, old couples strolling and even a few people panning for gold in Clear Creek (seriously).  And the entire time I was thinking how lucky I am to live in place like this (that spends money on bike trails) and how lucky I am to be able to do this ride.  Like I said - I'm feeling spoiled.  Thank you, lapband!


Monday, April 11, 2011

Sorry for delayed post!

Sorry I didn't post last week.  I was traveling again.  Only the Bay Area this time but gone for the entire week for an industry conference and endless meetings.

Let's do a quick catch up...
last Monday (4/4) weigh-in 183.0
today's weigh-in: 180.4lbs

woo-hoo!! Looks like I really did bust through my plateau at 185.  I tried eating a bit more (up to 1400-1500 calories/day vs 1100-1200 now) for a few days and changed up the workout routine a bit.   I substituted a Pilates Mat class for Chisel and added an extra cardio class.  Guess it worked & I'm losing again :)

On the band front, last week was tough with me PBing almost every day.  PB on easy things - sashimi, water gulped too fast, etc.  My band felt soooo tight & I just didn't get it - especially after the Germany trip when I was eating bread, pasta & pretty much anything in sight.  And period showed up on Thursday.  aha!  The reappearance of my period is still rather novel to me & not yet on any sort of regular schedule.   I have to remind myself I'm only into this about 3 months and still really have a lot to learn about this band......Also, not sure if its the right approach but I would rather PB quickly & get it over with than being stuck & in misery for hours.  I'm sure the better choice would be to avoid these episodes altogether but, like I said, I'm still learning!

It's my bday this momth & the gifts are starting to roll in.  I got a new toy last night: a heart rate monitor & I'm so excited! Here's pic of my new Polar FT7.  Gorgeous!
It'll track heart rate (duh!) during my workouts so I know I'm training right plus it'll show calories burned.  Right now, I'm just using calories estimates in MyFitnessPal.  It'll be great to have a more accurate count (altho' I'm a little afraid I've been overcounting....)  I'm gonna break it in tonight during Kickboxing & Pilates.  I'll let you know how it goes.

I'm down 45lbs now & definitely am having body image issues.  At first, it felt like all the biggest parts of me - boobs, arms, ass - were shrinking fast.  Those bits appeared "small" (relatively speaking) to me.  But during the plateau, its feels like my body shifted and those bits now seem huge again.  Did my boobs grow??? DH would say hell no! I'm wearing a cute button-down shirt today in medium.  It fits great across the waist, shoulders, upper arms...everywhere except the boobs.  ugh. sigh.  Maybe it just proportion thing - boobs, arms, ass are smaller but still relatively larger than the rest of my frame.  Dunno but I know its messing with my head.

Other times I feel skinny.  I was heading out the door yesterday morning for Spin class.  I was wearing bike shorts & standard workout tank.  In profile, I felt * thin*   When I walked in the tv room, I could tell my hubs was really looking at me.  Not just a glance but really seeing me.  He is always so supportive.  He said I've been doing great and that this process has completely changed the way I look.

Like I said, its messing with my head!