Unbelievable how hard a little discipline can be, and to what am I listening?

My training blogs are probably my most self-serving blogs of all. Why are they self-serving? Isn’t trying to lose weight and get fit a national obsession and therefore sharing how I am achieving broadly useful?

Although I do hope that another non-athlete, someday stumbles across my blog the same way I stumbled across others writings and are inspired to realize they can have fun if they get off the couch and out of their comfort zone (James Owen (in the inspiring sense) and Jayne Williams (in the athlete who looks more like me sense) were the two primary writer’s who helped me get started and keep going last year, but the real reason I keep training blogs is that it keeps me accountable. Telling others what I am going to do, and then honestly reporting whether I have done it or not, is the support my weak self-control needs to make it through the tough choices. Getting fit is not easy, it goes against my very nature, at least until it becomes second nature.

Last night was a perfect example. I am back in the habit of television grazing at night. Aware of the obstacle coming up in the course of my first night back into healthier behavior, I closed out my “MyFitness” as soon as I finished my last bite of dinner.  I also reminded myself that I intended to blog today about how well that first day of training went.

See, it went like this, wander out to the kitchen to check on dogs or watering or phone charging, hand on fridge door thinking of See’s chocolates I got for Easter (most awesome gift from the family I serve), then “Wait,” my brain says to my appetite, “You have no reason to be hungry, in fact you aren’t hungry I can tell, AND you closed out your calories for the day AND you have to blog tomorrow, you really want to blog about how you screwed up the very first day!” I remove my hand from the fridge and get a glass of water. I even actually resort to a glass of calorie free flavored water on the third trip which seemed to help quiet my candy craving for the rest of the night.

I drank a lot of water last night.

But I did meet my exercise goals, and I did meet my calorie goals. Today is a sit-up, push-up, stretch and roll day (yes, it is true, my calves and glutes are slightly sore today but not horrible) and I will walk 3 miles today as well . But that is all later, off to deal with some other self-care responsibilities. So on to the final question…

What am I listening to….? Well I have been crooning along with my old buddy Doris Day, housecleaning to Leo Kotke, and being moved by Jason Isbell and the 400 (all of course courtesy of my friends at Hoodlum Records who are about to have the best vinyl sale EVAR! for Record Store day April 21.  Go check out the list at http://www.hoodlumsmusic.com/blog/ )

Funny thing though, that when I really need to de-focus from pain, discomfort, or the inner whine of the excuse wheel I find my motivation not in music but Podcasts and Audiobooks. So what did I listen to yesterday? I am running and listening to a marathon of all the DML podcasts http://www.thelondonbroilshow.com/dml/ from I-tunes. My AZRF friends will know these guys as “The London Broil”, they are just intelligent enough and silly and funny enough to hold my interest indefinitely. I am back up to episode 10 (they just put out episode 23) and I have to say, I would totally go with the adult size Big Wheel, how about you?

I Rode My Bike…..

I am incredibly happy this morning.

Nothing has changed in the externals. My back still hurts at about a 5/10 (had two full hours of relief after my visit to Backfit Chiropractic yesterday thanks to Jacquie’s massage and Dr. Vogel’s adjustment). My ends still won’t speak to each other, let alone meet. I have no medical insurance at this point, nor any hope of getting anymore due to actually really needing the coverage and so have absolutely no idea of what my bloodwork looks like or if anything is growing again, and yet, I am totally and competely, Happy.

Because today, anything seems possible.

Today, for the first time in my long, coordinationally challenged, plus-size life, I rode a bicycle.

I rode it for a mile.

I am still giggling about it.

I did this after swimming two laps (thats four lengths or 100 meters), twice plus a few lengths to equal 14 lengths or 7 laps. (So swam a total 350 meters)

This was accomplishing the impossible for me.

The other stuff will come in time.

I can ride a bike.

I am happy.

Thank you to all who have helped me get this far, I didn’t quit before the miracle happened because of your support.

It is good for me to have goals that rest on the things I can control like how I use my time, what I eat, how I dream, and how I apply my discipline; because the things I cannot control (like the economy and politics and other people and some portions of my physical vessel) somehow become small and insignificant when I amaze myself. The irony is that the blog I will edit and post later on about  middles will actually be posted after the breakthrough.

Also BTW, my DIL is kicking butt on this training thing. As far as Athena novices go she is the Goddess!

A small video of me swimming…<iframe width=”420″ height=”345″ src=”http://www.youtube.com/embed/PnoGGuYXV7k?rel=0″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen></iframe>

A small stretch…..

Running exacerbated the back, hip and knee pain yesterday and I have 17 mosquito bites, for these reasons I did not run this morning. Instead I doubled my yoga and added a guided meditation from the Meditation Oasis on Body Balance to my morning routine. Plan to run tomorrow. Also my goal is to get out and play with my bike until I can ride it this week. Like a kid does.

That is one piece of news that happened during my birthday radio silence. My friends from Tucson brought me a wonderful Mountain Bike for the race for my birthday and my baby gave me the basic, no speeds beach cruiser I kept fondling at Tempe Bike. This is perfect because I have a bike at my son and DIL’s and I have one out here in the badlands. Of course, I am just finally balancing a bit and still haven’t mastered the pedals, yet.  But I am amazed at the magic that shows up when I (or anyone else) set a goal and then work for it with all my (or their) might. The universe makes magic.

Anyway, these are my goals this week, to get my run groove back. I had a 12 minute mile, I can again.  To actually swim 75 meters without break (3 lengths) and to pedal my bike for at least a block.

Now I must get ready for work. My kiddos greeting yesterday was all the reward any pediatric home nurse needs. (AND Today I am not forgetting my lunch again!)

The amazing 12 minute mile…


The title says it all.

And it’s 90 degrees here before the sun is up, so that is when I run.

And now to work my eighth day in a row.

My day began with an hour of gratitude meditation because that is the fuel I will need to safely navigate this day.

Namaste to all other SOFT and able athletes, may you train well today!


Now I lay me down to sleep…

 Short blog about my training progress and then off to bed. I am incredibly exhausted and plan to try to sleep a little later tomorrow morning as it is a training rest day. 

My big accomplishment this morning at swim practice was completing eight full lengths (or 1/2 lap, 200 yds) of the pool face down in my free form breast stroke. They were not consecutive. Every length down I did non-stop face down but the lengths back were riddled with pauses and pretty much backstroke or dog paddle. My weakness, fear and  rudimentary skill awaken my impatience today more than my doubt. 

I am digging my progress. Five weeks ago I couldn’t make a full face in water length with the kickboard. As of this morning I have accomplished the lengths I need to complete the October race. I just need to complete them without lunch breaks. LOL.

Progress, progress. Oh, I also think I found a bike I want for my starter bike. Its a hybrid and about 200$ at Target, and I found the training wheels on Amazon. Though if I can start doing the gym regularly maybe I can skip the training wheel phase as my strength and balance improve.

Noien, my dear canine friend and subject of my last blog, is also doing better today. She is still very low energy and coughing her CHF chuff at any excitement or exertion but she ate a scrambled egg and a Milk-Bone. I am very much concentrating on living in the now with her, and I stand corrected by my youngest son that she is actually 12.5 years old. As a pup, her life span was predicted at 8 to 10 years max due to puppy mill health issues;  I think I started mentally making her younger and younger hoping to stop time’s progress.

Speaking of time progressing quickly, I can’t believe 28 years ago I was giving birth to Richard. I did make the Jello for the birthday party, and ate it and the steak my son cooked. He is an awesome cook. It was nice to share his birthday and I am glad I went. 
Also pretty much sure it will be the last meat I ever eat. My conscience is bothering me and so is my used to tofu tummy. Just like it takes all kinds of beliefs to make up the world, it takes all kinds of diets. Mine needs to be meat,  milk and wheat free. Sometimes I am a slow learner. I don’t need anyone else to eat that way, but my whole body and soul tonight are reminding me that I do, now it is up to me to take care of me and learn to just say no.
 Still the tummy tussle is a small price to pay for a great meal and to hang with them all and make Rick smile. I hope they all finally went swimming. I went home cause I knew I was gonna throw up and well, somethings are better done at home, alone, and I am such an early riser/bed goer no one thought a thing of it.
And now once again this Slow, Old, Fat Triathlete is off to dreamland and star catching, if the tennis match in my tummy will just finish.

A train, a train….would you, could you on a train.

 My days do revolve around "train"ing, and my mantra these days is certainly about increased locomotion, but actual steam engines are kind of off track, as are Green Eggs and especially Ham, green or any another color. However, the first fifty years of my life, my response to any form of on-going non-theater related physical exercise received a response very like Sam-I-Am’s response to a green breakfast. As of right now, with a little help from my friends, this triathlon train is still the one on which I am booked.

Yesterday, three of the four women showed up for class at the pool, even though we knew Phil (trainer) would be absent. I managed for the second time to complete the full homework in length, if not with its requested continuity.

Here is my current swim training schedule (again), with actual how it happened commentary.

2 Lap Kick Board warm up, focus on breathing and consistently moving. (I get this part done and keep my face in the water, at the end of one lap I am already breathing like I am exercising; during second lap I feel it in my legs; by the end I am kicking more efficiently.)

4 Laps free style with no, or minimal (30 seconds or less) break ( I get all 4 laps done but the breaks are more like 30 seconds between halves, and 60 seconds, 90 seconds, 90 second, 2 minutes between the laps. I swim all four  75 percent breast stroke-like style. My heart at this point is racing to get out of my ribcage and I thankfully need a potty break)
1 Lap Kick-board (Still able to keep face in water at least half the time, legs are feeling energized rather than earlier sore, can emptying your bladder reduce lactic acid?)
3 Laps free style (These are my WTF do I think I am doing even trying to be an athlete laps. It was also here that I managed this week to do a half a lap in my poor form breast stroke without flipping or stopping and it was at this point I started bargaining with myself about how if I could just do a full lap without stopping I would allow myself to quit early. This pushes me to really focus on trying to swim face down, but can’t do the full lap without a half-way 90 second pause.)
1 Lap Kick-board.( I just do it. Slow but steady, goggles off. Just locomotion)
2 Laps free style.( I really try to do these well but I am physically tired and so the "can’t breath" voice gets quite a bit louder. I Did manage one more half lap in breast stroke without stopping or flipping to back stroke.)

1 lap Kick-board. (By this time I am constantly telling myself, "OK, just do another half-lap. Just another half-lap, then if you really need to you can stop. My desire to finish means taking no break at the turn is a lot easier)

1 Lap free style (I try to make this my best lap, it isn’t but that approach at least gets me through it.)

Cool down
2 laps with kickboard focusing on breathing. It will be little extra hard here because you will be tired. Thats ok, try to push through it. (I pushed through, barely. Actually crying inside as I make myself breath out under water while my little voice has a full on fit. Cheered as I finished and was cheered by Dawns support!)

Then Rick and Dawn took me to breakfast at the Coffee Shop. I am borrowing Dawns Ipod since mine burst into flames. The funny part of the fire in my car story was that I was listening to an audio book by James Owen and the heroes had just arrived on an island representing Dante’s sixth hell. I would expect Apple will attribute it to the realistic prose. I put it out by pulling the FM broadcast/charger out of my lighter socket and using my swim towel to smother. Car still smells a bit of smoky plastic and wire solder, but nothing worse than the loss of my Ipod to show for it. 
So much more to tell about this week, but it is time to get ready for work. I will work today, go swim tonight, work on my Twenty Wishes (Ladies book club thing) and my outline for next months camp nanowrimo novel. Probably no new entries till Monday unless I achieve some unforeseen amazing breakthrough.
P.S. I did not go swim tonight but will tomorrow. I was starving when I got home and decided to cook dinner instead and then it is early to bed. I was yawning all day at work. As important as training is to me. Job comes first.
Namaste, fellow star catchers.