Yesterday after work I ran my fastest mile at 10:47!! I also didn’t have to stop 3/4 of the way through like I did last time because I felt like I was dying. I just wanted to share this with y’all because of the improvement that I’m seeing and as encouragement to anyone else out there who is working toward a goal! Keep going because you WILL get there!
This week of going out and running has been so much better than last week. Yesterday my half mile warm up was faster and didn’t wear me out as much and today running the hills was a little easier. I went faster and farther up the first hill and slower but farther up the second hill. It makes me so happy to see some improvement.
I’ve also been slowly updating my diet to include healthier meals with less sugary snacks. This weekend I cheated a ton, but am getting back on track this week with hummus, low fat yogurt, more fruits, and eating smaller portions at mealtimes instead of gorging myself on every kind of food in sight.
It makes me really happy to see so many changes going on in this area of my life where I have struggled with inconsistency for so long.
There have been a lot of changes in my life the past couple of weeks: I started attending yoga classes with my stepmom, which has been awesome! People have been leaving our office at work, I’m getting ready for classes to start back up, roommates are coming and going and switching rooms…there’s just been so much happening!
So with all the new changes and things that are probably going to cause me some stress this semester I decided to start running. I have a really great friend who has been running track for years who is teaching me a ton of stuff about running. He’s been getting me on a schedule this week, teaching me how to breathe properly, and how to maintain proper form.
This has not been easy in the least! The first day he had me out at the track just to see what my endurance level is; testing how much I can handle. I’m pretty sure I punched him several times because I felt he was pushing me too hard, but I’m thankful that he did. The next day he took me to a place up the road where there are hills. I hated him, myself, and the rest of the world on this day. The hills were terrible; I was out of breathe, struggling to keep my form, and exhausted. I wanted to cry, and honestly I did shed a tear or two.
The third day was much better. We did a warm up lap, stretched, and then I was told to complete a mile on the track on my own. I was able to complete 3 laps before my body started screaming for water, so I grabbed my water bottle, took a few sips while still continuing to move, and then I was off again.
Today we’re going to find a dirt or grass trail because the concrete is hurting my feet. I’m happy to say that I’m super excited about this and am really hoping that with my friends training and encouragement I’ll be able to make this a lifelong habit! And I’ll still be attending yoga during the week to help stretch out my body and do something that doesn’t cause so much wear and tear!
I am very excited to say that last night I attended my first hot yoga class with my stepmom! I’ve never done any sort of yoga before or any type of fitness class so I didn’t know what to expect. But when I arrived everyone was so welcoming, friendly, and encouraging! It was such an awesome atmosphere.
Hot yoga is exactly what it sounds like: the temperature of the room matched the temperature outside, which was high 90s, possibly in the 100s since it is summertime in Texas. I was sweating within the first 5 minutes. After 10 minutes my shirt and shorts were soaked and anytime I looked down a puddle was forming on the floor. (Gross, I know, but it is what it is!)
After 75 minutes we were done and I felt awesome! I was amazed at how easily I got into the movements and patterns of the class. I did learn several things that I want to share from my first experience…
1. Breathe. Just breathe and allow your body to relax. Take deeper breathes to help you get through a tougher pose. But do not hold your breath at all! It’s not natural or good for you!
2. Watch others for form but do not become envious or discouraged if they can hold a pose longer or stretch father than you. It’s not a race, and keep in mind that some people in the class have been practicing for years.
3. Hydrate hydrate hydrate!! I cannot stress this enough, even for myself. I drank so much water during the session, but not enough afterwards. Which led to me waking up at 5am this morning gulping water out of the sink faucet. Your body loses a ton of water when you sweat and you need to be sure to put all of it back into your system.
These are the things that stuck out to me from my first experience that I felt would be good to share with you! Tell me about your yoga experiences and please share any tips you have learned!
I honestly slacked off on working out for a little while there, between homework and work and family coming into town for a weekend, I was exhausted. BUT on Monday I got to take off work to go to Six Flags with an old friend, which meant a TON of walking! It was great! And even better: I stayed away from carbonated drinks and junk food! I felt very accomplished. I came home exhausted with sore feet but it was worth it!
Yesterday, I decided to take off work an hour early (mostly because I was overwhelmed, on the edge of tears, and stressed out beyond belief) and spend some time outside. We have this church down the road from us that owns a lot of land on a hilly region of Dallas. They have hiking and biking trails for miles and miles. I called up one of my friends and asked him to come up there with me so I wouldn’t be wandering around the woods by myself.
We got some water bottles and set off on the longest trail they have: a 7 mile loop up and down tons of hills, over creeks, and through gorgeous fields. Unfortunately I didn’t take any pictures, mostly because I wanted to stay away from my phone for a while and enjoy being outside.
We finally finished our hike after 2 hours and 20 minutes. We were beat, but it was worth it, and I was able to come home a little more refreshed and relaxed so I could focus on getting more homework done.
I mentioned in my last post about waking up and going for a walk last week. Well, that was a success! Something that I used to always try to do was wake up obnoxiously early and go running. This never worked, normally because my body wasn’t in shape, or I would be super tired at 6am, and I would end up discouraged and not work out again for a month. It was an exhausting cycle and I had to realize that I was trying to do things that were too difficult for my fitness level.
But walking, that’s easy! Because I walk everywhere already, so why not put on proper shoes, headphones, and walk at a faster pace?! Great workout! Needless to say, I was up this morning and walking again. And it was awesome!
This weekend I also invested in a medicine ball to help motivate me to workout when I’m at home and have nothing to do. It’s also incredibly fun to play with and you almost don’t realize that you’re getting a workout! It makes it a little easier to to fit small toning workouts in throughout the day instead of trying to block off an hour of my time to go to the gym where there will be sweaty guys grunting and being manly. I also don’t have to worry about looking silly or worry about anybody looking up my shorts when I’m in the comfort of my own home.
Lately I’ve been learning a lot about eating healthier, and after my breakdown last semester I want to keep myself in better shape. I’ve been taking a good look at my life and realizing that half of the things I eat are just junk. Nothing healthy is going into my body, except the occasional banana. I also have a horrible habit of overeating.
Exhibit A: To cope with being lonely because all my roommates were out of town I made a dozen cookies and ate them all in one sitting. I am not proud of this moment.
Needless to say, I am not the healthiest person on the planet.
That being said, I want to use this portion of my blog as a way to keep track of how I am doing with portion control and getting some form of exercise in daily.
For example: while I was at job number 2 today I did not have access to a gym because I was babysitting. So instead I got on Pinterest and found simple exercises that you can do at home that don’t require any equipment. It was really great because I could still watch NCIS and the girls were doing their chores. It worked out for everyone.
Tomorrow, my goal is to get up and go for a 30 minute walk around campus. Not running or anything difficult, just walking at a vigorous pace.
Along the lines of portion control, I went and got ice cream today, and instead of having my normal 2 scoops I settled for just one scoop, which ended up being the perfect amount!
I would really love some feedback from my readers: what works for y’all in portion control, what you find difficult, and your successes!