Monday, January 30, 2017

Sleeplessness, Stamping, and a Lack of Mileage

Thursday morning I had physical therapy again.  I thought that we were doing a follow up gait analysis on me, however, it was a progress assessment.  What that means is that I performed a bunch of exercises that I had performed during my very first  PT session with RunLab.  There was 1-legged hopping, box jumps, 1-legged squats, and so on.  John, my PT, scored me based on my ability to do the exercises without fault (aka: without losing my balance).  I scored WAY better than I did in my initial assessment.  I was actually quite surprised with how much improvement I made in just 5 weeks, especially with how spotty I’ve been with doing my homework.  I have been foam rolling more often on my own since I have discovered that it makes not only my hip feel better, but my back too.  Shocker, I know right?

After physical therapy, I hit up Ladybird Lake trail for a 4-mile easy-paced run.  Very easy paced at a 10:45 pace.  Seeing as how I was just finally no longer sore from my sub-2 hour half marathon just 4 days prior, I didn’t think I should really do much more, even though I did want to do 7 miles.  also, physical therapy is pretty…well, physical…so I’m at the very least a “little” fatigued by the end of it.

I seem to be more hungry…or maybe it’s “hungry”…lately.  I’m not sure what is causing it, but one thing I don’t want to do, even in the smallest way, is to make excuses.  I don’t want to not take responsibility for how I eat.  I want to own that “ish,” you know?  Because if I don’t do that, then it sets me up for further failure to eat as I should and that just leads to further regaining of weight which I most certainly do not want to happen.  I think a few things are making it difficult for me.  1st is that I seem to be having continued issues with getting back on track thanks to the whole birth control fiasco.  I thought that once I got back on my previous pill (which I have been for about 3 months now), that within a few months everything would be as it was before, but it’s not.  And that is extremely frustrating.  Related to that is that I’m now having a cycle again.  And with a cycle comes bloat and water retention and occasional cramps and food cravings.  Lastly, there is the fact that I’m chronically sleep deprived due to working 64 hours between Monday and Friday and it’s not like those hours are evenly split between those 5 days (you know, like 12 hour shifts every day or something like that).  nope.  I wish!  Instead, I work 16 hours for 2 days in a row (getting just 2.5-3.5 hours of sleep each day), then my regular shift, then I get up early for PT and work another 16 hour day followed by 2.5-3.5 hours of sleep and another regular shift. 

As you can see, I don’t sleep much.  Frankly, I wouldn’t sleep too much more than I currently do even if I wasn’t working so much, because I have pretty bad insomnia that isn’t even helped by prescription sleep medication.  Also, I have my chronic pain issues that keep me from staying in bed for more than about 7 hours so even if I have time to sleep longer, I don’t usually sleep much longer because of the pain.

Saturday, I went to the Stamp Scrap Art Tour up in Plano, TX with my friend Jes and her boyfriend Manny.  I got up at 5am to make the 3-ish hour drive for the tour show.  We were an hour early so we could be one of the first 100 people in the door and get a key to the “treasure trunk” which would have won us $100 in tour bucks to spend at the show vendors.  However, before either one of us had a chance to go try our keys, someone else’s key opened it.  Wah wah.  Also, they had hourly drawings for door prizes, also for $100 in tour bucks.  We also didn’t win any of those.  And then, finally they had 2 baskets full of about $600 worth of stamping and scrapbooking items and we didn’t win those either.  My luck sucks sometimes.  Oh well.  I spent a smidge over my budget, but I’m okay with that.  I had a spending cushion anyway.  I was hoping that there would be more regular scrapbooking items (like Thickers and ephemera and embellishments and stickers, etc), but it was like 93% stamping stuff.  There were some die cuts, so I bought a few of those.  I used a few of them in the Spellbinders die cut/embossing machine I scored for super cheap at Tuesday Morning a few weeks ago and love them.  Oh and I also got 3 embossing folders.  Used the city skyline one in my machine on some black cardstock and love that too!  However, 2 of the dies I bought won’t work in my machine, so I suppose I’ll try and find a Sizzix Big Shot machine as cheap/discounted as possible because that is the machine that the packaging states it is compatible with.  Lame.  But, I really like the dies and even though they were in the 50% off basket at the booth I bought them from, they still weren’t super cheap.

We also stopped at the Tuesday Morning that was nearby the Plano Center where the Tour took place and I was able to assuage my desire to buy regular scrapbooking supplies.  I kind of regret not buying the fancy (well, fancier than the one I have) paper cutter that they had for $15.  Oh well.  I’ll be hitting up the Tuesday Mornings around me in the next few weeks looking for a Sizzix machine for cheap.  So maybe I’ll find another fancy paper cutter at one of them.

Sunday I found out my parents will be taking a cruise out of Miami for their anniversary in March and will be stopping to visit me.  OMG!  My apartment isn’t even close to being ready for a visit.  So I need to start cleaning and organizing NOW if I want it to be presentable by the time of their visit.  One of these years, I’ll have the time and money to go on one of their cruises with them.  Obviously, I would have my own cabin on the ship…duh! 

I seem to be having issues with being motivated to do anything active, beyond walking anyway.  This is frustrating to me.  I want to run, but then when it comes down to it, I don’t want to run.  Does that make sense?  I also don’t seem to want to go to the gym and do a workout like I need to be doing.  But, FYI, once I start, I’m usually fine and totally get into it.  If I can’t get my mileage in running to ramp up by the end of March, then I think I will abandon my 1300 miles in 2017 goal without guilt.  It’s just a goal anyway and there’s no requirement to hit it.  I ran 1274 in 2016 and my body seems to be pretty exhausted from that, hence my lack of high mileage so far this year.  But the good news about the lower mileage is my legs are more rested!  Haha, that can be good, but it can also be bad.  Everything will be fine.  Sure I have a time goal for the Austin Marathon next month…attempt #3 at a 4:15:00 finish, but I have no time goal for the 50K I’ll be running in March with my friend.  That is strictly a “fun run.”  Haha, 50Ks of fun! 

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

A Week in the Life

Soooo, I saw this lady on YouTube using this super HUGE date stamp in her videos and I immediately wanted it.  So I asked her where she got it and she said Studio Calico but that the last time she looked it was sold out.  I went to the website anyway and they had an option to notify me when they get more of it in stock.  So I did that.  Then, like 5 days later, I got the email saying it was available for preorder!  So I bit the bullet and bought one!  This thing isn’t cheap.  It’s $30 for the stamp, not including shipping.  I’m not going to lie, I got a bit queasy over how much I spent on a STAMP!  But I love the stamp and I know I’ll use it a lot.  It’s just a fantastic tool that I’m going to love.  I mean, this thing is 8 inches long, 3 inches wide, and the date is ½ inch tall!

I ordered some alphas and other stickers and things (like a fine line glue bottle and some quick dry tacky glue) off amazon last week.  Most of the stuff has already arrived.  One thing won’t arrive until later this week or early next week.  I ordered some 12x12 page protectors with nine 3x3 pockets from Walmart and selected the free in-store pickup so I’ll get those next Monday and I’m excited to add that page layout option to my album.  I also ordered a corner round paper punch off Etsy before I realized I could get one for the same price in person from a physical store and didn’t have to wait a month for it to arrive in the mail because the place I ordered it from is in Hong Kong.  Ugh.  Oh well.  Too late now.  I don’t have any need to have 2 corner round punches, and it’s not like a shape punch where they come in different sizes, so I’m just going to wait for the one I ordered to arrive in my mailbox.

I worked overtime on Tuesday and Wednesday nights, which meant I could go for a run Friday morning.  YAY!  I did sleep in a smidge just because I wake up so early all the time and get so little sleep.  I didn’t sleep TOO long, just until like 8:30, so an extra hour really.  I ended up doing 5 miles.  It was a decent run but nothing to get all excited or anything about. 

After my run and, of course, after my shower as well, I had a little time where I could do some organization in my scrapbooking area.


Back up to Thursday night…I went out for karaoke with some coworkers to a place called Ego’s.  always fun.  I really wanted to sing stuff I haven’t sang before.  And I really wanted to sing a newer song by Niall Horan called “This Town.”  I really love that song.  So I asked the KJ if they had it and she did so I got to sing it!  YAY!  It ended up being the only song I sang because the rotation at Ego’s for singing is super long and I needed to go home and go to bed so I could get up the next morning and go for a run.

Some more scrapbook related stuff.  I bought a fine line glue bottle!!!  I’m pretty excited about this.  Why?  Because, duh, I can apply glue in a very fine line to thin embellishments, like die cut lettering.  That way, I don’t get way too much glue on the item I’m gluing down.  I also bought some super cute tea and coffee time puffy stickers, so I’m pretty excited about those.  I also bought a bunch of stuff off a discount scrapbook supply online store for super cheap.


Saturday I had the 12 week Challenge class.  But when I got there and went to sign in, my name wasn’t on the sign in roster.  I asked and one of the trainers then texted the manager who initially said that the Saturday class was already maxed out with participants and I’d have to do the other class that meets on a weekday night.  So I asked for a refund.  To which he responded (not knowing that the trainer was allowing me to read the texts for myself) “we don’t want her to refund.  Sounds like she’s just being difficult so go ahead and let her attend the class.”  Wow, really?  You’re going to call a customer of yours “difficult”???  Part of me really, really wants to confront said manager and part of me doesn’t even want to go through the effort of trying.  Anyway, I got to attend the class and while I have to say it’s not much of a workout in regards to calorie burn (or at least this past Saturday’s class wasn’t), at least it’s got me doing exercises I don’t normally do, so that makes it worth the cost of the class.


After that, I stopped and bought some plastic drawer storage for my crafty table, then my friend Heather came over and we went downtown to pick up my race packet.

And I bought some Texas flag running shorts!  I saw some of them at the RNR San Antonio expo, but they didn’t have my size.  This vendor had my size and they were 20% off so of course I bought them!


On the way back to my car, I saw a guy carrying boxes of Voodoo Doughnuts so I asked Heather if she wanted to go real quick since it was super close and she said yes.  We both got a Butterfingering donut and she also got one of their water bottles.  I saw the stickers too late.  I mean, I suppose I could have still gotten some, but whatever.  If I go again, I’ll grab some stickers.

Then back to my place for some scrapbooking, but Heather forgot her pictures, so I scrapbooked and she organized her travel bag for about 45 minutes.  Then it was time to head to Trudy’s (a local chain Tex-Mex restaurant) for dinner with our friends Becky and Eileen.  After that we crossed the parking lot and did Painting With A Twist.  That’s one of those places where you drink while you paint.  This was my first time doing this and omg it was a blast!!!  I want to do it again and am now not adverse to going by myself.  I’d really love to do the “paint your pet” night! 

When I was in San Antonio for the New Year’s Day 5K, I grabbed my friend Becky a  “Come and Take It” hat, so she bought me a University of Colorado hat.

Sunday was the 3M half marathon.  I was really shooting for a second attempt at a sub-2 hour finish time.  I was wearing a pace band, but I didn’t really pay any attention to it after the first mile…after I caught up to the 2 hr pacers essentially.  Then I just played leapfrog with them for the majority of the race.  Something that pissed me off was that my Bluetooth earbuds kept cutting out due to the up to 50 mph wind gusts that were happening!  Also at a couple points the wind blew one of my legs into the other and I almost stumbled and fell down.  Long story short (hopefully I get the recap typed up soon so you can read the long story if you’re interested), I snagged that sub-2 hr finish time!  And I’ve now completed 4 of the 5 races in the Distance Challenge!  And all 4 are races I’ve never run prior to this challenge.  After the race, I ate donuts and took a 2 hour nap, then I meal prepped and scrapbooked.


And, last but not least, I had my 2000m row test for work.  So, to set the stage, last month I rowed it in 8:25 minutes and scored 109%.  On Monday I weighed 2 pounds more, rowed 1 second faster and scored 108%.  Woohoo!  I’m still super happy with my score.  And as an incentive I don’t have to do another fitness test this year, however I’m already signed up for the combat fitness test in September and if I score 90% or higher on that I get a special award, so I want that, so I’m telling my supervisor not to cancel me on that.

And now for some random pics.....

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

The Gym Closes Early on the Weekends!

Sunday night I made it to the gym before they close at 8pm.  Seriously?  A major gym that closes at 8pm on Saturday and Sunday nights?  Ridiculous.  Oh well.  I joined and now I have to deal with it.  I don’t *usually* go late but I have been known to make my appearance at the gym at 10pm before.  But, no more…at least not on the weekends.  So, anyway, I hit the treadmill up for 3 miles at a decent pace of 9:18/mi.  Then I did some upper body exercises (seated dip, bicep curl, pec fly, seated mid row, and torso twist machines). 

Monday morning, I had an appointment with that trainer at the gym, Josh.  Well, I got there a couple minutes early, put my stuff away in the locker room and then went up front to meet him.  Except he wasn’t there.  After about 5 minutes I asked if he was there and they said he knew he was meeting me but had to run home after an early morning session with a client.  Okay, cool.  The same thing happened last time I met with him.  So I went over to the stretching area and rolled around on the super knobby foam roller because my sciatic nerve is really bothering me lately.  Then I went back to the front and he STILL wasn’t there.  It’s now 10 minutes after the time I was supposed to meet him.  The other trainer said he’d go text him.  Like 1 minute later, Josh walked in the front door.  He went straight to asking what I’d decided about purchasing training sessions.  As much as I would love to buy them, I can’t afford it right now.  And, then, also, even if I could, I would NOT buy them from someone that can’t show up on time to an appointment.  I had 2 appointments with him and he showed up late to BOTH.  Tisk tisk tisk.


The only things I really took out of the appointment was 1, what I’m doing isn’t working so I need to change things up (but I already knew that) and 2, I really should probably get tested for Meniere’s Disease like my physical therapist suggested I do.  Josh talks sort of quietly but also has a semi-deep voice and I have always had severe problems understanding really low tones.  I can hear it, but really it’s more I feel it than I hear it and even if I do HEAR it, I can’t make out the words that the person is saying.  And that’s one of the symptoms of Meniere’s.  (there’s quite a few others and, frankly, I have almost all of them)


I did ask about the 12 week bootcamp I signed up for.  Apparently I was supposed to have done my official weigh in for that already.  Great.  So, while I’ll be participating in the first class, I’ll be weighing in with the second class.  Whatever.  I’m already going to miss the 2nd class as I’ll be out of town for a scrapbooking convention on the 28th.  This frustrates me a little bit, but I’m not going to miss that scrapbook convention and hanging out with Jes.  She really seems to be making an effort for us to be friends again so I want to make sure I put in the effort as well as I really would love for her and I to be real and actual friends again.  Not just people that are cordial and tolerant to each other at work.


So, wow, I got super sidetracked there.  Back to Monday.  After my craptastic meeting with the apparently always fashionably late Josh, I hit the floor for my workout.  I was going to log 3 treadmill miles, but at 2 I had to stop.  It was just too mind numbing for me and I couldn’t do anymore.  That was at a 10:02 pace.  Then I did leg curls, leg press, glute master, monster walks/sumo walks/duck walks (PT homework!), and the ab coaster.  I was going to call it good with that, but decided to hit the ladder machine for 10 minutes.  So, I’m pretty happy with that workout.

So, like I said, what I’ve been doing isn’t working.  So I need to change things.  I don’t want to be THAT person that is constantly blogging about how I need to change things, then about that I changed them, then about how I failed in my efforts and then starting over, and over, and over, etc etc etc all the damn time.  I strongly dislike reading other people’s blogs that do that so why would I do that to you?  So I’m very hesitant to write about starting over, yet again.  But, here I am, starting over again.  But not really.  I’m not starting over, more like I just took a few steps backward and have to find my way back to the path again. 


Project Life is going quite well!  I’m seriously enjoyed the heck out of it.  In fact, I’m enjoying it so much that I haven’t let myself get behind at all.  See, originally I was going to wait until the month was over to start working on it, but then I was like, nah I’ll just work on it at the end of each week.  Well, yea, so I don’t even let myself make it to the weekend.  I’m getting my layouts done the day of or, at the latest, the day after the event.  And then, over the weekend, I got bored after I’d done a “2017” 12x12 title page and then another 12x12 page to go behind the title page with my goals for the year listed out, and went ahead and have now already done my 4x6 title card for February!
my title page

my goals page that is on the back side of my title page

I bought a nice bowl this weekend and put some of those round glass “rocks” in the bottom of it and then planted Mr. Onion.  I watered him, but now he’s soft because he absorbed the water.  I’m wondering if I shouldn’t have submerged him so deeply into the soil…like maybe he should be more on top of the soil?  If you know about growing onions, please let me know if my onion should be half in the soil or more resting on top of it.  Thanks! 

I had PT on Tuesday instead of Thursday this week due to a temporary change in my OT schedule for this week only.  So I am working OT on Tuesday and Wednesday nights instead of my standard Mon, Tues & Thurs.  But I go back to that next week, so all will be right in the world again at that point.  My PT was done with another patient so that was fun…seriously, not being sarcastic.  She was a very nice lady and we got along just fine, in my opinion anyway.  Afterward, I was going to hit Ladybird Lake for a run, but since it was cold and rainy and I’m still not itching to run all the miles yet this month, I went to the gym and did my combat fitness practice instead.  And my phone didn’t save the selfie I took at the smith machine, so I’m annoyed about that.  Oh well.

I snapped a pic of my scrapbooking area as it is right now.  Something to keep in mind is that this picture was taken after I did a bit of organizing.  And it's still super crazy!  Since I live by myself, I do my scrapbooking in my living room because, well, it doesn't matter.  HA!  I'm hoping to get it a little more organized in the next week or two.  My apartment is a hot mess in general and I'm really going to be working on organizing the entire thing over the next few weeks.  Right now, I'm pretty sure if management came in my apartment, I'd get some sort of nasty-gram about the state of it.  And I don't need or want that to happen.  I want to get more of those drawers you see on the right to put on top of the table as the baskets I have there now are nice, but not really super functional and I have to dig in them too much if I want to get to what's at the bottom.  It's just inconvenient right now and I want to streamline things.  I also want to get another thing of the 8-square cubby shelf units to go behind the loveseat on top of the one that's already back there for more storage space.

On Saturday, I went to the Eckman's Toy and Comic show down in San Antonio.  I was fairly disappointed in the like 99% lack of things to do with the Legend of Zelda.  I was really hoping to find a Nintendo cartridge of the game, but alas, NO ONE was selling any Nintendo cartridges...not that I saw anyway.  What the heck?  There's always someone at this thing selling them.  UGH!  But, I did get to feed my My Little Pony and Spawn figure obsessions.  I got 3 super mini Pony figures and then 5 larger Pony figures that have brushable manes and tails.  And then I got the Spawn Redeemer figure.  Love them all!

And then, later that night, I went to Target and found this awesome beanie so I HAD to buy it!

And then, I really, really, really wanted mac'n'cheese and managed to find GLUTEN FREE mac'n'cheese so I can eat it without feeling like total crap!  And it's super yummy...WIN!

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Recovery & Obsession

Friday was payday and of course, I ordered some more scrapbooking supplies because, well, I need more.  <rolls eyes>  Aside from that, I also registered for my very first 50K race!!!  OMG!  My friend Ben is going to run it with me, though, so while it’s scary, it’s a manageable scary because I won’t be doing it alone.  I am really excited to run my very first ultra marathon, though!  WOOHOO!  I signed up for the Prickly Pear 50K which is March 12th in San Antonio, TX.  Hopefully it won’t be muddy or otherwise gross.  I did 24-ish miles last year in March for a trail race and it was nothing but mud and water up to my chest.  While it was definitely a memorable experience and was mostly fun, it’s not really something I’m hot to repeat anytime soon.  I don’t mind getting dirty but that was a little on the ridiculous side.  I’m sure you agree.

Another thing I registered for is my very first Painting With a Twist session for a girls night on the 21st of this month.  Painting With a Twist, if you’re not in central Texas, is one of those BYOW (bring your own wine) painting party places.  The painting we’ll be doing is the Texas state outline with the Austin skyline inside with a sunset/sunrise colored sky.  The model says “Austin stole my <3,” but I don’t want mine to say that.  I’m probably just going to paint “Austin” and that’s it.  I came to a decision last month about Austin and how I believe Austin is the reason I don’t much care for Texas.  If I lived, say, in San Antonio, I might be happier.  It’s a simpler life down in SA.  And my friend Jennifer lives there and she knows all sorts of fantastic and cool places to eat and hang out.  But I can’t move there because I’m not commuting for 3+ hours a day to and from work.  I wouldn’t be able to work OT like I do now, for starters.  I’d have to work either just partial shifts or on my days off.  Neither is acceptable to me.

I need to show you guys some of my crafty hauls that I’ve splurged on lately (if I can just remember to take pictures of them before I put them away and take them out of their packaging).  I know, I know, I need to stop.  One of my top 3 goals for this year was to spend LESS.  So, after the scrapbooking convention on the 28th, I’m cutting myself off from crafty purchases for a while.  I have more than enough stuff.  I do need to get some better storage options.  So I was thinking I might probably buy a raskog cart to help with that issue.  However, I bought some of those 3 drawer plastic storage things from Target instead.  I will buy a raskog, but not right now.  I do need something to put my Project Life card containers into instead of them just hanging out on my couch like they are right now.  BUT, because I bought those drawer containers, I was able to seriously organize my craft area.  It still needs more organization, but it’s way better than it was.

So, every now and then, EVERYONE suffers from lack of motivation.  No one is exempt.  Not beginners, not elites.  No one.  It happens to everyone at some point.  It’s been about a year and a half since I suffered from a lack of motivation.  I now find myself suffering from it at the moment.  Ever since 2017 started, I’ve had a hard time kicking my running into gear and getting out the door for runs that I have scheduled for myself…or not running the full distance I had intended on running.  To say it’s a little frustrating would be an understatement.  I know it all started when I had the issue with the medication last fall and it made me have cysts on my ovaries and regain like 15 pounds.  I’ve been back on my previous medication for a little over 2 months now.  While I FEEL better, I’m not seeing things happen the way I want them to happen, the way I had hoped they’d happen once I got back on my original med and got restabilized on it.  I’ve lost like 3 or 4 of that 15 pounds I packed back on.  I look in the mirror and I’m disgusted.  This is just my own warped perception of how I look.  There’s actually nothing wrong with how I look.  It’s just not the way I want to look because I’m not at the weight I want to be at.  The weight I was at just 3 months ago.  I felt so great and loved how I looked.  I’m just trying to get back to that moment in my life. 

The GOOD news is that even though I’m not losing the weight like I want to, I’m not gaining weight.  I’m essentially maintaining at about 161 pounds.  I really want to lose 10-ish pounds as soon as I can.  It’d be fabulous if I could lose it before my trip home to visit family and friends in May.  So, that’s like 4 months to lose 10-ish pounds?  Totally achievable.  Totally.  I’m just trying to not stress myself out about this.  I’m just trying to be smart about it and figure it out.  I am pretty sure that my eating is the key so I’ve been tweaking how I’m eating a little bit to see if different things work better than others.  This week, I’m finishing out the zoodles with meat sauce I made for my lunches last week, and then I’m going back to the ½ rotisserie chicken for lunch each day.  I really do like having the fruit smoothies with 3 boiled eggs (the eggs are not blended into the smoothies…gross…haha) for breakfasts.

Anyway, so, I’ve pretty much accepted that I won’t hit my 120 mile goal for January.  And I’m okay with that.  I still have another 11 months in this year to make up for this month’s lack of mileage.  Like I said, I’m not stressing about this lull right now.  and that’s how I’m seeing it…as a lull…nothing more.  I ran hard last month and my body needs rest.  Rest isn’t something I give my body a lot of.  I mean, I work 64 hours a week and then I run an average of 25 miles a week (that was just the “average” weekly mileage for 2016 with 1274 total miles ran over the whole year…there were 40+ mile weeks in there) and I don’t take time off from anything.  I just go-go-go all day, every day.  so I’m taking January as a “rest month” for all intents and purposes.  I started physical therapy at RunLab and am really enjoying that process and learning new exercises and workouts.  I LOVED the speedy hill workout on the treadmill, for example. 

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