Thursday, August 27, 2009

Working out to cable fitness shows

It rained today. Again. We've had a really wet summer this year, and it feels especially bad after the drought we had last year. Since I couldn't go for a run this afternoon, I decided to work out to one of the fitness shows on Fitv. It was centered around learning a hip hop dance routine and then incorporating some ab work at the end. While I didn't get the kind of workout I would have gotten running, it was a really nice change of pace and actually a lot of fun. My cats thought I was nuts. The level of workout you get probably depends on the show you tune into, but they seem pretty cool. It sure beats paying to go to a class!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hi everyone! I'm just testing my mobile blogging feature. I had a decent run this afternoon and am definitely looking forward to the cooler weather :)
Hi everyone! I'm just testing my mobile blogging feature. I had a decent run this afternoon and am definitely looking forward to the cooler weather :)

How much sugar do you consume?

Apparently more than you realize! According to an article I read on Yahoo!, Americans are ingesting 22 teaspoons of the stuff each day. That equates to 355 calories each day of empty calories. No wonder Americans are overweight! It turns out that we drink most of that sugar in the form of soda, but we are also not aware of the added sugar in most foods. Keep in mind that these numbers do not include natural sugars found in foods like fruit.

I guess this just points out the need to eat less processed foods, which is virtually impossible in today's world. Who has time to make everything from scratch? Plus it's easy to see why the poor inner city and rural kids have such issues with weight because this is all they eat. Those kids and their families simply don't have access to the resources those of us in the 'burbs do. Something definitely needs to change here.

In the end, we're either going to have to change our palates or start exercising more, but probably a combination of both (and start providing better choices to kids everywhere, not just the well-off ones). Phew!

Monday, August 24, 2009


For those that don't know, cankles is slang for calves that seem to merge into a person's ankles with no definition. I've always thought of this affliction as something that happens to the elderly due to medical conditions, but apparently this seems to "afflict" people of all ages. People have even begun to have liposuction on their ankles! I know I was lamenting my "larger" waist in my last post, but I seriously think we're being too harsh on ourselves here. Not everyone has Barbie legs. One of the nice aspects of the human race is how we can all be so different in appearance and personality. We are allowed to be unique.

Anyhoo, check this article out at Enjoy!

Friday, August 21, 2009

Can you be fit and fat?

Is it even possible to be fit and fat (maybe this depends on how you define fat)? How about skinny and unhealthy? As it turns out, the answers are yes, but there are some important facts to consider when judging how healthy we are. This article discusses why it's still very important to be fit and maintain a healthy waist size. Notice there's no weight range to fall in or BMI to achieve. I've been reading more and more that those numbers aren't accurate and that we should focus on waist size. *sigh* As much as I like the information becoming clearer, I also realize that my waist size isn't as close to the 32.5 inches experts say it ought to be. I don't have a tape measure with me here at work, so I don't know how far off I am. I think the last time I measured it was either 34 or 35 inches.

I almost feel like this is working against my general goal of just being fit. I enjoy being active and the weight seems to come off slowly on its own time as I'm working towards my fitness goals. I have lost a lot of weight on my belly as past pictures I found the other day prove. Sometimes I really understand the temptation of taking a drug for its weight loss properties like Adderall, which is not that hard to come by if you're willing to doctor shop (highly unethical and could kill you!!). Then I remember that while I may not fit neatly into an expert's strict standards I should focus on just being happy with myself, flaws and all. So what if I don't meet the 32.5 inches? I'm relatively healthy, active, and enjoy life. It's all good :)

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Running and dogs

Image found at

I finally went for a run this morning! Since I haven't had much of a chance to explore my neighborhood, I decided to just run around the (kinda hilly) neighborhood. It was nice to see all the different houses, the other morning people running or walking their dogs, and just enjoying a nice moment to myself.

Until I came across some dogs.

Let me state up front that I love dogs.....I should be clearer. I love well-behaved dogs. The dogs that I came across this morning, through no fault of their own because their people allow them to run around lawlessly, were unleashed, unsupervised, and generally running amok. I had to stop my running completely because one of the dogs stopped in my path and began barking while coming closer to me. Since I don't know these dogs, I yelled at him to go away. Luckily he did, but another runner was next to me and asked if I was okay. My comment - "Next time I'll remember to bring my pepper spray".

I attended an HOA meeting after my run and let the board know that there were some stray dogs running around and that next time I will not hesitate to carry my pepper spray and use it if threatened by those dogs again. Some neighbors recognized the description of the dogs and said they are harmless, however a board member did concede that since I don't know the dogs that I am well within my rights to defend myself. My point? Nice dogs or not, they should not be out and they can turn at any time if they feel threatened. Who's to say they won't turn on me?

Unfortunately this is a common occurance for many runners, so be careful. I've seen many walkers carry walking sticks just for this purpose, and many dogs have been sprayed with pepper spray due to negligent owners. Just don't let some bad pet owners ruin your running experience.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

100 posts!!!

I've been waiting to decide what I was going to write for this epic milestone (yeah I know, there are way more important things than me talking about running for 100 posts). I was hoping to write about my latest run, but I'm learning that August is the worst month in Georgia to run. It's too darn hot! I promise I'll run again soon. I'm actually extremely serious about running this Saturday morning. It won't be pretty, but it'll feel great. I'm beginning to feel bloated from not running ugh...

So keeping in spirit with this blog, let me tell you how writing this has kept me motivated!

I can't believe people actually follow me on the blog itself and in Google Reader. I'm up to around 20 people! Because I know you're reading this, I feel compelled to at least try to keep up with my training and relay new facts. That has to be hardest part about exercising in general - we often only feel accountable to ourselves and therefore find it too easy to talk ourselves out of exercising. Case in point - it's too hot to run in August! /whine

Having a vehicle to post pictures from races inspires me to participate in more races to take more pictures! I can see the improvement in my body and it feels great (except when I take several weeks off and get bloated). I never thought I'd be the kind of person who would pay an organization to run in the street, but I am! Racing is addictive! I can also use this as a way to track my progress in races, and I hope you all learn from my mistakes.

Most of all I'm just glad that you all either care enough about me to read this or enjoy reading about the trials and tribulations of an amateur runner. Thank you all for helping make this an amazing adventure so far, and I hope the next 100 posts are just as successful as the first!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

High cholesterol means dementia or Alzhiemer's later in life?

I found this very interesting article on about how high cholesterol and borderline high cholesterol seems to have a significant correlation with Alzhiemer's and dementia. Remember that a correlation means these two seem to occur together, but we don't know why or if there's a real relationship there. We may find out later that these findings are coincidental, however I think it's worth looking at. Runners may be at an advantage here since regular exercise encourages good cholesterol while lowering bad cholesterol.

Who knew we crazy runners were really protecting our brains?

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

I think I eat too much

Why do I think this? Well, there is my extreme fondness for food (nom nom nom). But let me get to the real reason I think this.

I haven't gained any weight since I stopped running a month ago.

Now you're all thinking I'm crazy, but hear me out. Since I knew I wouldn't be burning extra calories with running, I haven't been eating like a pig like I usually do. In fact, I've been eating a lot less on many occasions. This leads me to believe all those articles I've read that many beginner runners gain weight because they think running burns more calories than it actually does. I have definitely had the thoughts "I'm running later so I can eat (insert crap food here)" and "I had a really hard training run this morning so I can eat (insert comfort food here)".

I will definitely begin eating more once training ramps back up (hopefully later this week yay!!), but I will keep this unscientific experiment with myself in mind when planning meals.