Category Archives: running

Realizing how far you have come

I refuse to tell people that this is what to do… or this is what will work for everyone… because that is a bunch of hooey. Everyone knows that nothing works for everyone and what works for one person simply can not work for others.  It irritates me when other people do it.  I won’t.

That said… this is where I am this morning…

This morning I hit what my PCP suggests ought to be my goal weight. That means I’m about 15 pounds from my actual goal weight.  THAT means I, very soon, need to start going to the stupid Weight Watchers meetings so I can hit goal there and become lifetime.  I still resent the hell out of that little ploy, but it is what it is.  Yay Nestle…

In celebration I drank a cup of coffee with creamer as a morning treat.

Then I got ready for my run.

I started playing Pokemon Go as a way to see if I can do something distracting during my run.  Hatching eggs.  Unfortunately, the app calculates really badly… I can run 2.5 miles and not QUITE accumulate 1k distance in egg hatching.  But steps is steps and they eventually hatch.  I thought maybe that my fanny pack would count the distance better than my flip belt…  Turns out it didn’t… but… in the process… I had to put my fanny pack on.  This is the utility belt I had always used in races.  This is the utility belt I used before I started on my little weight loss adventure… and my little running adventure.  It fit.  The way the strap was… it fit… 6 months ago… it fit.

This morning when I put it on, this is what I found…. When I strapped around me and held the pack side… I could see my feet between my stomach and the bag.

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When I let go of it this is what happened!!!

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I have officially lost enough weight that my fanny pack needed to be VERY much tightened.  I was, suffice it to say, not only SHOCKED, but very pleasantly surprised.

Today, I adjusted my run/walk/run time so that I ran 30 seconds and walked 45 seconds… I did 2.37 miles this morning in just under 30 minutes.

It got me thinking…

When I first started running (2008… 2009… ish time frame) it was right before I was diagnosed with RA.  RIGHT before… I was doing pretty well… but I was no where near as quick or consistent as I am now.

My first several ‘runs’ I did in the middle of the darkness in the morning around our cul de sac.  I would leave our driveway, jog to the next driveway… make it to the end of the street… walk the rest of the way… and fall down into the yard.  I started adding a little distance.  I would go to the next driveway plus one sidewalk square.  Sometimes the next dandelion.  I worked my way using the First Day to 5K pod cast.

I eventually worked my way up to being able to finish about a mile and a half… run walk running… but I was doing it at about a 16 minute mile.

I finished my first half marathon two months after I was diagnosed with raging RA… 37 joints involved… inflammation everywhere…. My hips screamed the last mile.  I almost couldn’t make it into the house from the attached garage.

When I finished my first Disney half marathon 4 years later, I managed to stay ahead of the balloon ladies but not by much.  I half way trained.  My RA was kind of mostly controlled but I had just started on Orencia.  I was still on MTX.

I was determined to finish Disney…. and it was a personal best time for me.  It wasn’t a great time, but I finished it.

I was 218 pounds when we moved to Cleveland.

I refused to do the math on what that meant BMI wise.  I didn’t want to know.

That was 4 years ago.

February I started back walking very fast to train for Disney.

Then I read that for every 10 pounds weight loss you can shave off 20 seconds per minute off of your run time.  I was determined to get to a 14 minute mile so I could half way comfortably finish ahead of the balloon ladies and still get my picture taken coming out of Cinderella’s castle and maybe even with Goofy on the golf course.

So after my PCP told me that WW is the silver bullet and that I should only EVER eat 0 point foods, I got pissed and joined.  I was determined to make it work.

I needed to shave my time.

I needed to get healthier and stronger so I can help Bear as much as I can through everything that is to come. I need to be as strong as I can possibly be.  I need to be healthy enough to support him enough through everything.  It matters.

And here I am at 165 pounds… 15 pounds short of MY 150 pound goal…

The walmart leggings I started out running in stay MOSTLY up but slide down a few times during a 2 to 3 mile run.

People at work who haven’t seen me in a while have started to comment on how much weight I’ve lost.  I kind of look at that sort of in a hard way… I didn’t really think of how heavy I was.  I didn’t think about how I looked to other people.  I didn’t think… Now I think.

I’m down 4 pants sizes.  I’m running in between a medium and large pair of running leggings.

I don’t hurt as bad as I did before.  I don’t hurt as badly when I am nearly to infusion day.  My hands still ache some days and I still am stiff in the mornings but I feel less bad (does less badly equate to better?  I’m not sure).

And I’m starting to think of myself as a runner.

But it’s not all sunshine and roses in my own head.

Men have started to notice me… started to flirt with me.  There was a guy in Pittsburgh when Bear and I were waiting on the Gateway Clipper who bought pop corn and brought it over so I could help him feed the ducks.  It never dawned on me until Bear pointed it out later that he was flirting.  People rarely ever talk to me so flirting isn’t something that ever crosses my mind. My first thought was… I want very much to go back to being invisible and I should stop trying to lose weight.

But I like feeling better.  I like thinking that I might not need to be on some of the “you’re too heavy” drugs that I’ve been on for years.  High BP meds… cholesterol drugs…

So… yeah… it’s been very much a thinking kind of day… a day of how far I’ve come over the years.

Running isn’t for everyone with RA.  Knee damage, ankle damage, feet and toes… it seriously curtails what you can do with working out… but moving is a good thing and I’m convinced that weight watchers (much as I STILL hate trying to find the logic in stuff) and running have made an incredible difference and I know that I really really don’t want to go back to having a BMI of 36.  Goal for me is now a normal BMI… and making sure I’m around to help when Bear needs my help.

And… of course… doing races…

August … Rock n Roll Hall Of Fame 10k

October…. Towpath 10k
Pumpkin run in Akron

November… Made In America in Massillon Ohio half marathon

February…. Disney!!!

 

Love and Light

April

7/13/2018

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Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland 5k race report Cleveland Zoo June 23 2018

So, I won an entry into this 5k at work.  It was timed just right for proving to myself that I could do a decent time in summer humidity.    And it was going to be a fun run for me.

The activities were pretty awesome and one of the best things about the event was the opportunity to get a picture with the four Cleveland Indians mascots.  Ketchup, mustard, onions and slider.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

It wasn’t a huge race.  There were about 227 people running the 5k.  It was my first 5k in… 13 or so years… and it was much smaller than my last one (race for the cure in Austin where it took 45 minutes to get to the STARTING line…

This race was a bunch of happy people out enjoying the kind of humid but it stopped raining kind of morning at the zoo.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Bear (way way far away in a light colored shirt facing this way in the picture below) was positioned perfectly to get a picture as I started.  ❤ . My own photography section!OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Here is a better picture of him, leaning on his rollator listening to whatever the guy talking was talking about.  Where I was standing I couldn’t hear much more than mumbling.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The motivational signs were awesome.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The bear wasn’t really so sure what the silly humans were doing…. but he was up for a good show.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Given that there are a half dozen golf carts in the zoo and that the tram wasn’t running… I thought maybe this sign was a bit over kill… OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

This part of the race irritated the heck out of me… The girl in the blue t-shirt and oversized headsets just went from being behind me to trotting along a short cut to being in front of me.  There was a lot of cheating in this race given the number of runners and the fact that it wasn’t going to actually gain anyone anything by cheating.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I caught up to her (and the guy in the gray) only to have them both take a short cut off course.  Really really?  Have you no integrity at all??  The lady in the purple shirt and I stayed pretty much together until after the big hill when she took off and I lost her.

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Top of the big hill (which I totally beasted I might add) was the flower bed sign.  I think it would be a pain to change every day… OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

After the hill (up and back) OH LOOK… more cheating!!! Three of them this time.  The course goes around to the left (it was an out and back so you went exactly the same way in reverse… except them.

Given that there are three medals to be had in every age group, I really hope this cheating didn’t earn them any bling… OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

And there is my cheering section again…Bear… trying to get me crossing the finish line.  I did 3.31 miles per my Map My Run in 38:46 clock time.  My pace ended up being 12:26 (my time is steadily improving)OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnd here was Francisco Lindor of the Cleveland Indians.  He was the sponsor of the race this year and he’s a really really nice kid.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

And here I am at the starting line.  The shirt… xxl (which was incredibly awesome because the packet pickup people told me there was no way I needed one that big.  THAT made my whole morning.

I finished 187 out of 227.  I wonder what my actual place would have been had the jerks not cheated.  I may have actually improved my standing if not my ultimate finish time.

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All in all a fun race.  I’m incredibly irked that so many people felt it necessary to cheat but I’m proud to say that I know that I did every step of the course and still came in at a time to be proud of.

 

Love and light
April
June 24 2018