Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A quick post about bruised knees, graduation and a filthy house

Knee photos from Saturday to Saturday.
  • My week, and weeks to come are so freaking busy, this is all I can manage right now. A half assed update with pictures. More pictures than text I think.  Last weekend I fell during my run. I was only 1K into my 7K run before I fell off a curb landing on all fours in front of a car. Stopped traffic in both directions and the driver actually got out of his car to check on me. I was waaaaaaaay more embarrassed than anything. I got up right away and took off running after yelling back that I was okay. I completed my run and my knee actually didn't start to hurt until I stopped running. Then it swelled up. I applied ice to it and cleaned it up. I still ran my long run the next day. It felt fine. It just didn't look good.
  • I've been more mindful of my eating. I'm trying to stick to lean protein and veggies grown above ground. I've been posting my meals to Instagram and my Facebook page (when I remember to snap a photo). Once I join the gym in the next month, I am going to go hardcore with my restrictive eating again. I'd like to lean out as much as I can before heading to Stockholm for my half marathon in September.

So, so dirty. And I had no water for two days...during the day.
  • My house is in total disarray right now. There is clay and sewage all over my main floor. The plumbing stack and sewage pipes were replaced. The pipe needs to stay exposed for another week so we can determine if there are any leaks before filling it in. Uncle John out did himself for sure. After the pipes get filled back in, all I need to do is get my fireplace ignition wire fixed. Uncle John thinks he can do that too. 

Love the pic of my dad and niece on the bottom:-)
The graduating class of 2014.

  • My beautiful niece graduated from grade eight on Friday. I am so proud. When I saw her walk down the aisle, I couldn't help but think of how much she's grown, and my eyes started to sweat (as Julien would say). My mother would be so proud of her. She's an honour roll student, received the English award, she's a talented dancer and an athlete. And she is the city champion for long jump. Can't wait to see what she accomplishes in high school.

My horrible run from Saturday.

  •  Still struggling with my runs. I ran on Saturday and it's the first time I ever just wanted to pack it in. I sometimes think that I can't wait to be done a run, but I never consider just stopping during mid run. I felt like shit the entire run. Couldn't get my breathing right and just struggled. I finished it and Sunday's run was much better, but boy did I hate the mental war I was having with myself.
  • Not sure what else to say right now. I'm likely going to do quick weekly posts over the next few weeks. Moving day is fast approaching and I don't have one box packed. I'm such a tool. I leave EVERYTHING to the last minute. It will get done, but I need to step it up. Packing officially begins this weekend. Leaving you with pictures from my Sunday with the boy and my gorgeous foster sister Rita:-)

Yes, Julien and I are wearing a bucket on our head. I'm not sure why.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The post about another week's recap and my double

Julien showing off his awesome Grade 1 drawing:-)

  •  So my 3x a week blog updates did not work out so well this week. Life is just hectic. Work, moving, stress, stress and more stress. I am such a worrier and when something is bothering me, it manifests into huge anxiety. That's where I am right now. BUT, but much of that will be eliminated once I move into the new house. Three and a half weeks. Only 3.5 weeks left before I can start relaxing a bit.
  • I have been posting my food and runs on my Facebook page and Instagram. If you're interested, you can go check them out there. My running was still a struggle this week, but I just need to keep at it. I procrastinate getting out the door, but once I'm running, I feel good. I need to keep that in mind every day.
  • I went for a massage on Thursday. I've been having upper back and neck stiffness, so that's the area he focused on. When I woke up Friday morning I couldn't turn my head. He went very deep. But, by Friday night, all stiffness and soreness was gone. I guess I just needed a day of recovery. I feel fine right now. The best my neck/back has felt in weeks. He could have warned me though:-)
  • Julien wanted me to take a picture of a drawing he did. He insisted my hubby write GR. 01 DRAWING across the top because he said that when I posted it to Twitter, no one would believe a grade 1 drew it unless it was properly labeled because it's that good! 

Julien is always the ham:-)

  •  This week I posted a picture to Twitter and Instagram taken of me when I was about 8 or 9. I thought I looked a lot like Julien does now. So I did a side by side and asked him if he thought we looked alike. He said we look nothing alike because he does not look like a girl. I said, that he does not look like a girl, but I actually looked like a boy. Then he asked why I wore my hair like that. Good question! The requisite 70's perm:-(
  • I have been following my eating plan and cutting down on my fruit, and no nuts. The wine...I did have a couple glasses during the week. So that was a fail. But I'm not going to stress over it. I always strive for perfection when it comes to my lifestyle and that's just not realistic. I'm understanding and supportive of others who don't eat 100% on plan. I need to be less rigid with my own life. Wine is the only vice I have left. I should be allowed to enjoy it and not feel guilty about it. So I will. And my hubby twisted my arm (not too hard though) stating that wine was good for my heart. He just didn't want to drink alone in front of me:-)
  • One week into my eating plan and I already feel differently. I'm less bloated and my gut's not as soft. Also likely has to do with my increased water intake. I was really slacking on the water for a while. Not smart. Need lots of water to run, and my toes cramp less when I'm properly hydrated. The only downside is I go to the washroom like it's my job.

I don't know...I think there's a slight resemblance.

  •  This weather has been...how do you say, unstable! I put on an outfit according to the Environment Canada forecast, and I'm either under dressed or overdressed. Even after the most horrific running winter ever (for me at least and it was only my second winter running), Mother Nature is still sticking it to me. She needs a serious attitude adjustment. I'm just not sure how I can make that happen. I may have to strike up a committee.
  • That's all I have for you. It was a busy, but pretty boring week. I may be doing the weekly blog check-ins for now, just because of the hecticness (is that even a word) that is my life. Once I'm settled, I'll get back into the swing of things! I will continue to post my food and runs to my Facebook page and Instagram. Thanks to everyone who checks in with me regularly. I appreciate your caring words:-) You all rock!
Friday evening wine:-)

Saturday, June 7, 2014

The post about accountability, a sewage pipe and the Ride to Conquer Cancer

My run from this morning. I'm not gonna lie, it was painful.

  • Look at me blogging two days in a row! I will be blogging more often because I need to return this blog to what it was intended for when I first started writing here almost 3 years ago. This blog needs to keep me accountable once again. It's no secret that I have been struggling with my running over the past couple of months. And although I've gotten lots of supportive advice around this, I know in my heart what I need to do. I need to be as strict and regimented with my running as I am with my eating. By week's end (which is tomorrow), I'd have only run 3 days. And 3 days of low mileage runs. Yup. I dropped 2 runs. Why? No reason. Just because. And that's not okay. Somewhere in the past 2 months, I started giving myself permission to skip runs here and there. It was hard at first, but then it got easier and easier. Now it's a struggle for me to get out the door. 
  • I am not running the mileage I used to. Therefore I should not be eating the unlimited amounts of food I have been allowing myself to eat. My clothes still fit me fine, but I don't feel as fit as I was. And I feel soft. I don't like that feeling at all. So starting right now, I am making some lifestyle rules that I must adhere to for the next few months while I am training for the Stockholm Halv.
  • I will return to blogging 3x per week. I will post my daily runs and food to Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
  • I will not eat any nuts, nut butters, seeds, bananas or sweet potatoes and limit my red wine intake to 2 glasses per week.
  • I will only eat 2 servings of fruit per day.
  • I will drink a minimum of 80oz of water per day.
  • I will follow the proper 1/2 marathon training schedule (which is prominently displayed on my fridge). This means running 5x per week. No excuses!
  • As soon as I get up in the morning I will change into my gear and run. Regardless of the time. City streets are safe enough.
  • I will join the gym in July and begin working on strength training with a personal trainer.
  • I have seriously lost my way with running. And this hurts me. I never thought I would dread running. Although I'm still eating well, I'm eating too much of all the good things.  I know when this happened. When I started waking up even earlier than my 5am internal clock. I started getting up at 4am. It seemed too early to run, so I made a pot of coffee and started reading blogs, Twitter, Facebook. By the time run time came along, I'd be too immersed in social media, that I'd not feel like going, so I'd give myself a pass.
  • I have been very regimented with my lifestyle over the past 2.5 years. And that is what works best for me. When I start to get sloppy, I will slip. I have slipped with my exercise regime. If I keep that up, it's only a matter of time before I start slipping with my eating as well. I cannot let that happen because I worked too hard to get to where I am today. I love the freedom of eating Paleo and not having to limit my portion sizes. But that only works for me if I'm running well. If not, it would just be a matter of time before I started to gain weight. Not an option for me. And I want to get leaner. I've been saying it for months, it's time I finally did it.
  • So if you're interested in following my daily diet/exercise regime, you can like my Facebook page, follow me on Instagram, or follow me on Twitter. No more excuses!

                      June 3, 1970                                             June 3, 2014

  • Now for a quick weekly update. I celebrated my 44th birthday on June 3rd. Have I changed much? The photo on the left was given to me in 2010 by my birth mother. She carried that photo around in her wallet until she gave it to me. It was my birthday photo and the only image she had of me until we met when I was 39.  It is also the only newborn baby picture I have ever seen of myself. Although my parents took me home from the hospital, it wasn't until I was a couple weeks old. And my young infant pictures were lost. So that photo means a lot to me.
  • The house demands by my buyers are underway. I have an exposed sewer pipe in my basement. It's actually in really good shape for being the original clay pipe. There are some openings in the pipe though and my neighbor (who dug it out for me), put strong wire mesh over the holes. He told me he needs to secure them because rats could come in from the sewers. That made me lose my mind for a hot minute. I still have visions of rats taking over my house. Uncle John's not back till mid week to replace the plumbing stack and the pipe. So I'm a bit on edge. And I heard that rats are super cleaver. I'm sure they have tools.
  • I had counselling again this week. I spoke to my counselor about how I was anxious whenever I went to see my Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction therapist and she agreed that it was probably best for me to end that relationship. It's not that I didn't like him, it's just that I can't work with a male therapist. He made me more anxious than anything. He gave me the cd's which I've been doing and find helpful. I think that's enough. And I'm seeing my regular therapist to talk through stuff. So I think I'm good. 
  • This morning I drove my gal Dawn to Ontario Place in Toronto. It's the start line for the Ride to Conquer Cancer. What an awesome event. Two hundred and twenty-six kilometers over two days. That's Toronto to Niagara Falls. Made me think that I should do this ride with her next year. We've all been touched by cancer in someway. Cancer is what took my mother. And a close family member is battling cancer right now. So I will raise the $2500 that it takes to ride and join Dawn next June. It will be an amazing experience that I can repeat every year with Dawn.
  • Well, I'm off to enjoy this beautiful weather. Another reason why there is no excuse to skip runs. I ran all winter in sub-zero temperatures and barely batted an eye. But here I have beautiful weather to run in and I'm struggling. Makes no sense. Thanks to all for your continued support and kind words. You are all so awesome and I'm lucky to be part of this blogging community. Enjoy your weekend:-)

Supported my gal Dawn this morning as she got ready to head off from Ontario Place.

Friday, June 6, 2014

No Gains, No Grains - Traveling While Eating Paleo

A group of Primal/Paleo/Grain Free women who blog about their experiences/life/benefits without grains. A great way for others (who may be wanting to lose weight, reverse an acute/chronic health trend, and/or transition from commercial weight loss programs) to read about real life women who are living the life and succeeding.

This month's topic is about traveling while eating Paleo. Now this is a bit of a tricky topic for me because the truth is, I haven't vacationed since I was in Williamsburg, VA. And if you've been following my blog for a while, you know that what went down in Williamsburg back in July 2011 was the catalyst for my weight loss and transition into the Paleo lifestyle.  If only I knew then what I know now...but I'll not go there. It's always better to look forward. 

Since Williamsburg (and the "too big to fit on rides in Busch Gardens" incident), I have not been on a family vacation. I did go on a camping trip for a few days the first summer I was on the low carb, low fat, low sodium, high protein diet. But that was easily controlled because I brought all my food with me. Last summer was my first summer on Paleo. We did a staycation. Lots of day trips and an overnight with friends here and there.

I have been following the Paleo lifestyle for 15 months now. What I do and do not eat has become in-grained in my mind and it's a no brainer now. But even going to restaurants while on a staycation takes a bit of planning. We go to Niagara Falls a few times a year. It's 45 minutes from where I live and Julien's favorite place on earth. I prefer to eat at either buffets (lots of selection with meat, salad bar and fresh fruit), or someplace they serve a half chicken meal. That may sound strange, buy protein is my main staple and the more protein I eat, the better. So if I can get a half chicken with a side of veggies, I'm happy because it will keep me fuller longer.

This summer we plan on doing a road trip down to Bishop Hill, Illinois. I am hoping to run a race with my running mentor Carol at the end of July. Carol knows that I'm Paleo and that I follow a fairly restrictive diet. Staying with Carol shouldn't be a problem, but neither should travelling to and from our destination. While eating out, I order the meal that will get me the most meat and I sub any grain or white potato with vegetables and sweet potato, if it's available.  If sweet potato's not available, I get all veggies. I always strive to eat the biggest portion of allowed foods I can just because it satisfies me more. I'm less interested in what it is versus how big a serving it is.

I imagine a vacation to a resort in the south would be a dream vacation for me. I used to do those holidays a lot when I was in my 20's and I recall they had awesome buffets. My easiest dining experience to navigate. Maybe when Julien is a bit older, we'll venture down south. But in the meantime, we'll stay in north America. I feel as though I have a lot of confidence being Paleo. Eating away from home never makes me anxious. It used to when I first began my lifestyle change, but I really know what I'm doing now. Makes a huge difference in my quality of life because even though others may balk at my diet restrictions, I embrace them. I am living a life I never dreamed possible and it's because I have changed my lifestyle to one that is manageable and sustainable for life.

Now go and read about my blogging buddies who have vacationed more than me. This makes me very jealous;-) They will offer much more insight than I have provided here. Because they have much more exciting lives than I do:-)

Against the Grain
For Life
Garden Girl

         Williamsburg July 20, 2011                        Toronto June 2, 2014

Sunday, June 1, 2014

The post about a weekly check-in and my birthday week

Nonno's 84th b-day was celebrated last Sunday. And I melted with the long hair.
Wondering if I should get it more than trimmed for the summer...

  • So this is what my blog has become now? A weekly check-in? Just for now. I will blog frequently again once life has calmed down again. But for now, this is all I can manage. Plus, my life is pretty boring right now. Not a lot I can write about that is inspirational, interesting, fun. So you're stuck with boring check-ins.
  • Last Sunday we traveled to Scarborough for the day to celebrate my father-in-law's 84th birthday. What an amazing man my FIL is. He moved to Toronto from Sicily as a young man, married my MIL and raised his family. He worked hard in construction his entire life and his children have never wanted for anything. He's a man who loves the simple things in life and has a heart of gold. Love him to bits. And he loves his grandchildren to distraction. Happy 84th year papa:-) xx
  • Last week was a busy one work wise. Had to work a few late nights due to work events and scheduling. I also became a girly girl. I wore dresses twice. Yes, that's twice in one week. So unlike me. But it was fun and I don't think I clean up too badly. And I spent the week being very tall. Wore 4" wedges all week. Brought me to 5'11". When I weighed 300 pounds, I could never wear heels all day. I could barely wear them for an hour. It's nice to feel like a woman. And blisters aside, I'm hoping the heels will build up my calf muscles. You'd think with all the running I've done, I'd have better calves. And why do I have fat knees? Strange that!

In the picture on the right I'm wearing the bracelet Dawn made me as part of
her donation campaign for the Ride to Conquer Cancer. Very versatile piece of
jewelry. I can hook you up if you're interested. All proceeds go to RTCC and it's
fully tax deductible. Win, win:-)

  • Running continues to be a struggle but I'm doing better this week than I did last week. I definitely need a couple pairs of new shoes. I usually have 2 pair that I alternate. I only have 1 pair right now. And they are pretty much dead. So job one is getting myself some new runners. May make my runs a bit less ass dragging. I continue to struggle with my pace. It was better prior to me running the Bay even though I was running in the winter then. Go figure. I am a much more effective winter runner than I am a summer runner. When the weather changes, I struggle with breathing. I may get struck down by lightening for saying this, but I do prefer running in the winter. 
  • Still eating on plan. But I'm cutting back on fruit and nuts. I'm not running enough right now to afford those luxuries in my diet. And I'm not feeling as fit as I normally do because I'm not running as much. I'm at the beginning of training so my mileage isn't up where it normally is. That means, I can't indulge in the foods I love. And I'm thisclose to binging each time I eat nuts. Can definitely be a trigger food for me so avoidance is best right now. Trying to stick to lean protein and veggies that grow above ground for the next month or so. Need to regain confidence in many areas of my life, diet and exercise being at the top of my list!
  • I haven't gone back to see my Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction therapy counsellor. He cancelled on me, I was supposed to reschedule, and I haven't. He made me anxious more than anything. He gave me the CD's to listen to and they have been helpful. But I think that I need to just stick to my regular counselling for now. I can't work with a male counsellor. I'm much more connected to my female counsellor. And how much different counselling do I need? I'd like to think I'm not that effed up!
  • This is my birthday week. I am 44 on Tuesday. Already had a couple of celebrations this weekend. My neighbour came over with a bottle of wine Friday night, and Monica and Dawn took me to Baranga's on the Beach last night for drinks. Hubby and I have the same birth date, so we go to Tucker's Marketplace every year for dinner. It's free on your birthday:-) And we're cheap like that.
  • Wishing you all an awesome week. You'll not hear from me again until Friday when it's time for the next installment of "No Gains, No Grains". Be happy and healthy beautiful people:-)

Left: Ricky the raccoon came to celebrate my b-day with me last night.
Top right: Dawn's bracelets are also chokers!
Middle right: My POV Saturday afternoon. Love my yard. Am going to miss it:-(
Bottom right: My favorite summer meal. Souvlaki and village salad. And yes, I ate dairy
and it messed my stomach up:-(