Resolution Check-in: Month 9

Officially three quarters of the way through the year, and it’s that time of month for my resolution check in. As I review these I am not connecting with most of these as much as I was at the beginning of the year. I don’t know if it is because September seemed to fly by, or because what seemed important at the beginning at the year just isn’t anymore. How time changes things.

But either way, here is an update on how everything stands.

to train for a marathon:  As most of you know, this didn’t happen this year, due to  an injury, but I plan to complete one in 2017 with my eye on the Wineglass Marathon or Empire State Marathon- Has anyone run either on of those? I have those in mind because they are close by and they are in the fall. Plus I want to run a bigger race, and risk the chance of getting closed out of registration, in order to have good crowds and race support through the whole course.

to find my true purpose in my career– As I mentioned last month, I am currently exploring what it means to be a fitness coach. It may not be the true purpose of my career, but it’s a least a step closer to maybe finding out what I do or don’t want to do. I am not as overwhelmed as I was at the beginning of September, but I am giving it at least a few months to figure out if this is something I will want to do long-term.

As I mentioned previously, I am also participating in a Professional Development Leadership program for the next 6 months, and I really enjoyed the team building retreat we had a few weeks ago. It reminded me that I have leadership skills that are maybe being suppressed a little, so it’s up to me to find a way to showcase them.

to treat others better and think before I speak– I had a bad moment a few weeks ago at a family event, and for personal reasons and with the person involved I don’t want to go into too much detail because it’s not something that should be shared with the world, but the jist of the situation was that I didn’t give something a chance when someone offered to help me. I was critical from the beginning, sharing my dissatisfaction, judgment and impatience along the way. What I didn’t think about was how the other person maybe was reminded of how they used to help me with the task when I was a child and helping me in the present day could have brought up those (hopefully) positive memories.  Of course once the task was complete I was more satisfied than I initially thought I would be, but if I had just kept my mouth shut and given them and it a chance, then it could have been a really enjoyable bonding experience, instead of an embarrassing, immature moment for me. Even though we all have these moments, it still doesn’t make it right, and yes, I did apologize.

to do things outside my comfort zone– I did a couple of things regarding this: 1) I did my first Facebook Live in my Fitness Challenge Group 2) I registered for a Cross Country Race Series that will last through October & November. Since I haven’t run Cross Country since middle school, and just run road races, this was good for me. But it ensures that I will run at least once and week and will provide me with an opportunity to test my hips in race conditions. 3) I applied for the Women’s Running Cover Runner Story, which I figured it was highly I would get selected, but the questionnaire was short, so I sent it in 4) At the leadership retreat, I tried to strike up more conversations vs just sitting in silence and waiting for someone to speak with me.

Read 25 books in 2016– No progress with this, I am still in the middle of the book I started in August (The Ramblers) but it is an intention of mine to finish it this month. With only 3 months left, and only 15 soon to be 16 books complete, it seems unlikely that I will reach my 25 book goal. Next year, if I make/share resolutions, it will be something a little more realistic like 1 book a month vs 2.

to reduce clutter in my life- This progress has slowed some, but I do have to admit that I am not missing anything that I reduce earlier in the year (cancelling magazine subscriptions, donating clothes, etc). The one ‘thing’ I did this month was clean off the top of my bedside table that was PILED with books I wanted to read, or books half started, but had yet to finish. Instead of 6-8 books, I have 1 book (my current read), plus 2 journals that I track weekly quotes I share, and the other one is a notebook where I write special memories I have with my nieces and nephews. Clearing off that space is MUCH nicer to look at and I am not reminded daily of all the books I need to get to.

to reduce excuses and procrastination– Well the fact that I am writing this 2 days after the end of September just goes to show that I haven’t been doing well with this. When I actually just took the time to write this it took me less than a half hour, I just needed to focus on it. So although the reduction of procrastination as been going well, I have been reducing excuses when it comes to working out, as I am getting up early to do so because I have my swim coaching commitment after work.

That wraps up September. Thanks for reading!

What can you do for the next 3 months to end 2016 on a good note?

Advertisements

Resolution Check-in: Month 7

I am starting to write this during the Bachelorette finale….Do you watch it? What did you think? I have to say that even though I had found out the spoilers a few weeks ago, I still hoped the spoilers were wrong and it would’ve ended up differently. So now I just hope Jojo and her ‘chosen one’ (I won’t give the spoiler in case someone hasn’t watch it yet), are happy together.

This is my monthly accountability check-in on my resolutions, so here goes…

to find my true purpose in my career- I am not any closer on this than I was last month. But I did apply for a local leadership institute which would be a 14 day program spread out over 6 months introducing me to different branches of what makes up a community- legal, non-profit, commerce, agriculture, etc. Applications are being reviewed now so I am hoping I will get in because I think it is something I would really enjoy and may expose me to a different career field that I may like even more than where I am now. 

to treat others better and think before I speak-  I am starting to recognize more times when I don’t need to be so quick to answer or have a witty comeback.  I need to continue to remind myself that I can just take a couple of seconds, check my tone and really think about what my response will be and how it may come across. I think I did better this month.

to do things outside my comfort zone- This was a fun achievement this month as I participated in a flash mob! As someone who is pretty uncoordinated this was DEFINITELY out of my comfort zone. It was all planned in honor of the Vice President of my division who was leaving for another position. His assistant is a Zumba instructor and she wanted to do something memorable for his going away party. So she choreographed a dance to his favorite song “Ice Ice baby”. Thankfully she held a couple of practice session and everything went fantastic. I had so much fun being a part of it and it put me in a great mood for the rest of the day!

What have you done outside your comfort zone this month? If you are looking for an idea..run in sports bra http://www.runselfierepeat.com/blog/bye-bye-insecurities-bring-on-the-sports-bra

Read 25 books in 2016- I finally finished “How to Be Single” it was not what I expected, and I had to force myself to finish it. It is not one I would recommend. On the other hand I sped right through “First Comes Love” the newest book by Emily Giffin, and I would recommend that. It helped that I took a vacation this month so I had nearly 14 hours of flights & layovers to do nothing but read! I am up to 13 books for the year.

to reduce clutter in my life- This was once again one of my more successful tasks this month. My parents were recently given a lake cottage, so I was able to clean household items out of my apartment to be put to better use there. It was nice that my cabinets are getting a little emptier! I am noticing how my mindset has been changing over the last 7 months, when I think- does this get used? do I really need 2 of these? will I ever use the item? why am I letting it take of space on my end tables? I am realizing more and more everyday that less is sometimes more.

to eliminate excuses and procrastination- once again I don’t know how well I did on this. Actually if I really think about it, I know I have not been doing well as I was doing earlier in the year. I still have scrapbooking supplies all over my coffee table with little to no progress this month. I keep telling myself that once I get x done, then I can work on it, but everyday something else seems to come up. It all comes down to priorities.

to train for a marathon- I just finished up my 8th week, so that means I am more than halfway through my training. Unfortunately, I am dealing with some issues in my right hip/upper leg.  As I finish up this section, I am able to provide the update that I went to the Dr and I need to see a Physical Therapist, and until then no running :-(….. with 47 days to go until my marathon, the next few weeks will determine whether I achieve my goal.

That’s it for this month. How are you doing with your resolutions?

 

 


Resolutions Check-in: Halfway Mark

We are officially halfway through 2016. Are you still keeping up with your resolutions? Or do you need to reevaluate your goals for the year? One of my favorite bloggers & podcast host Nicole Antoinette created a Mid-Year-Review which poses questions looking back at the last 6 months and what should be committed to for the next 6 months. I highly recommend you check it out for some self-reflection.

Here is an update on my resolutions. At the beginning of the year I shorten my resolutions to 5 words… “Don’t be afraid to try”….

to train for a marathon- I have OFFICIALLY started training for this, I am 4 weeks into the plan and have already modified it by running more mileage than the plan lists. This is because after training for a half marathon, I felt the plan started off a little too easy. I finished June running 80 miles, which is the most I have ever ran in 1 month since I started running 5 1/2 years ago. I am excited to see what the next 79 days of my training will bring. Stay tuned!

to find my true purpose in my career- I took some helpful steps in my career by requesting a meeting with the Vice President of my division to ask for career advice before he leaves for another position. I really enjoyed working with and for him and after our conversation he offered to be a career mentor for me. He is someone who has been in Higher Education for 15+ years and has a lot of connections, so it can only mean good things for me!

to do things outside my comfort zone- I did a couple of activities this month that fall under this category:

First, I volunteered at my church’s bazaar even though I don’t know many people at the church and have never volunteered at the bazaar before. I worked for 4 hours on the food line, which meant I had to take and fulfill orders. It turned out to be a lot of fun and made me want to do it again next year.

I also attended an informational session for a local leadership program I want to apply for. The uncomfortable part was that it included some mingling/networking time, which is something I am NOT good at. I am not good at just walking up to someone and striking up a conversation. But I tried to put my best foot forward and meet a few people.

Read 25 books in 2016- I finished 2 audio book “Why not me?” by Mindy Kaling, and “BossyPants” by Tina Fey, which were good.  I am still reading ‘How to be single’ and it is not what I thought it would be, I don’t easily give up on books, but this one is not keeping me hooked. I do have a vacation coming up in a few weeks and can’t wait to read the new Emily Giffin book, First Comes Love! My total for the year is 9 books plus 3 audio books, which means I am right on track.

to reduce clutter in my life- I canceled 2 fitness magazine subscriptions because i was getting so far behind on them. I would skip through all of the beauty sections, and just read articles. Plus I have realized that enjoy more running specific articles vs general health/fitness and I just read everything online. So now I won’t have magazines piling up on my kitchen table reminding me on how far behind I am on them.

to eliminate excuses and procrastination- Well, similar to last month, I am not sure how well I did on this. I feel like I have reduced excuses when it comes to making time to workout- I will work out during my lunch hour, or even wake up early once in a while. But when it comes to other things in life I could be considered procrastinating. For example, I have had my scrapbook material and a years worth of pictures on my coffee table for the few months with little progress. I hope to finally make some progress this long weekend (Happy 4th of July), but the “excuse” is that when I get home I just want to relax or have to be an adult and pay bills or clean.

to treat others better and think before I speak- I didn’t keep very good track of whether I did this well or not this month. I don’t know if that is a good or a bad thing?

I would love to hear what you are working on for July, or committing to for the rest of the year.

Thought for the next month: We do not remember days, we remember moments.  Too often we try to accomplish something big without realizing that the greatest part of life is made up of the little things.

 

Resolution Check-in: Month 4

Seeing your progress is one of the most powerful ways to sustain motivation

Although I prefer writing and sharing stories about my running, sharing my progress of resolutions continues to keep me accountable, and if my story connects with someone struggling with the same things, than I am still achieving my goal of this blog.

Now 1/3 of the way through 2016, and here’s the update of my resolutions

  • to train for a marathon: With the success of completing my 3rd half marathon, I will officially be starting my marathon training at the end of May. I have been researching various training plans and have also met with a personal trainer at the wellness clinic at work to provide me with a personalized cross-training plan. I am looking forward to challenging my fitness levels, and hope that I will stay injury free.
  • to find my true purpose in my career- I didn’t find my true purpose this month, haha, but I did have some perspective provided from a good friend on not overstepping my boundaries at work just because I am anxious to have work assigned. I have tried to improved my attitude, and the last 2 weeks of the month were MUCH better than the first 2, so I hope it will continue in this direction.
  • to treat others better and think before I speak-This month has been tough on me regarding this because I am trying to be better, and then when I slip up I beat myself up over it… recognizing it is an improvement, but I still need work on stopping it before it’s happening. Some days I feel  it’s a good thing I live alone because I don’t have to interact with someone and say something offensive/rude/sarcastic. But at the same time, how will I practice getting better at this skill if I am not around other people? So when I was at my parents recently I tried to just really watch my tone and helped out with outdoors chores as an ‘actions speak louder than words’ type of thing, I may not always say the right thing, but I do try to do the right thing.      Another example is that I had written up a blog post, but as I read through it I realized that it may come across as offensive to others, even though it made me realize how grateful I was in my ability to do something, the story/lesson wasn’t worth the potential of it coming across as hurtful when I don’t really know the other person’s story. So I deleted the post.
  • to do things outside my comfort zone- I don’t have anything to report on regarding this. So this serves as a reminder for me try to find something in May- maybe it will be more fitness based with trying new exercises.
  • Read 25 books in 2016- I finished 2 more books in April (Lean In & Running for Women), so I am up to 8 books read this year. I have a vacation booked in July, so I hope to get an extra book read during that time.
  • to reduce clutter in my life– I was VERY successful in making progress in this goal this month. I did a lot of reflecting on if I were to hit the refresh button on commitments I’m involved with, what would I still choose to do.  I made a list of all the things going on in my life ranging from my full-time job, commuting hours, coaching to spending time with friends and family to time for myself doing things I enjoy (running, scrapbooking, reading), etc and I had nearly 20 items..20! I was surprised, but it made total sense that I felt like I was juggling too much, and feel guilty when I can’t do it all. Looking at all those things helped me to think about the priority of the item. From that list I started making changes to stop feeling so obligated to different tasks… I removed myself from a local emerging leaders committee because I have not been able to attend any meetings because of where I work and I always feel bad I can’t contribute a full effort. Another council I’m on I almost discontinued with after 5 years but when I realized why I have been involved for as long as I have I decided to give it another year (again) with hopes that by being able to attend meetings in person my attitude about the group will improve.

Breaking busy is about more than identifying the things in our life that suck the life out of us. We must also identify what gives us life, what recharges us and restores our capacity 

I also reorganized a tall bookshelf I have in my living room that I see everyday. It started off full of DVDs (who watches those now anyways with Netflix?) board games (which hardly get used because I don’t have friends over as often as I’d like), and picture frames. It was a lot of clutter to look at. So after seeing a few pictures on Pinterest and getting some inspiration from my youngest sister in law- I reorganized the shelf to only have books on it of some of my favorite authors/series; Sisterhood of the traveling pants, Nicholas Sparks, Sarah Dessen, Emily Giffin, Running books and then some framed pictures. I’ve read that removing clutter from areas I see everyday reduces the clutter I feel in your mind and it has done just that. By physically touching all the old items on the shelf and moving new ones into it I also decided what items I still enjoyed and what items were just taking up space in my apartment.

I also did some spring cleaning of my closets…. over the course of the last few months I have removed 2 garbage bags worth of clothes and just a few days ago donated them to a great cause United Nations Girls up. There was a collection box at work and it felt great knowing it was going to support a good cause.

Lastly I cut down on more tv shows, and officially cut the cable cord. Returning my cable box will not only save me money but also free up time I spent mindlessly watching tv. I am not home much anyway due to the previously mentioned list and after less than 2 weeks I can’t believe I didn’t do it sooner!

  • to eliminate excuses and procrastination-Again I don’t have much to report here, which just means that I didn’t keep very good track of this throughout the month. But I did come across this: “Instead of thinking ‘I don’t have time’, try saying ‘it’s not a priority’ and see how that feels'”(Laura Vanderkam). I think getting into the habit of saying that sentence could really have an impact on achieving this goal.

Thanks for reading. Are you still sticking with your resolutions?

Motivation: Half Marathon Training Week 4

The best motivation to keep running, is the feeling you get after finishing a run. The satisfaction of knowing you were brave enough to start and strong enough to finish will leave you wanting more.

I hope you had a great week since my last post. My week started off a little frustrating when it came to this blog as I made some steps to transition this blog to a new domain name under WordPress. I have sure learned a lot from the process but should be good to go for the future. It was just a pain!

Anyway, Monday was good when it came to my running. It was a nice enough day out to run outside even though it was slightly windy. But I reminded myself that I may not have ‘perfect’ weather on a race day, so why not conquer that and feel comfortable in that weather now. Even though I recently purchased a new GPS watch (Garmin Forerunner 230), I didn’t have it in my hands yet, so I tracked my tempo run by running on a track and taking a lap time. I surprised myself with being able to keep the goal pace (8:30ish mile =2:07 or less per lap) as that was the first time I ran a tempo run outside vs a treadmill. I ran 2.5 miles. I felt SO PROUD of myself when I finished my run that I almost danced my way up the steps back into the locker room… yes I know I am a dork! But it gave me hope that I could do well on the half marathon! It also gave me motivation to keep going on the training plan I’ve made.

After the run I did wonder why I would even need a GPS watch since the stop watch worked fine but I know it’s much easier to track training when everything in one place, plus I won’t always be running on a track!  But I know the GPS watch will be worthwhile investment.

Tuesday I woke up before work and completed the runner specific body weight exercises. It only take about 20 minutes. Nothing really exciting there!

Wednesday morning I ran before work on the treadmill.It was Interval day and I started at 7.6 speed then increased by .1 speed each round, doing 7.9 twice, once at 8.0, and decided to get one more interval in and went 8.1 (7:24 speed) for the first time. I did end up using my watch to track my run for my first test run, it was cool to see what happens during runs- such as giving me my miles splits. I think I pushed my speed a little took much because my ankle has been a little sore since, so I have had to break out the ice.

Thursday I was a little distracted in the morning as it was my parent’s 32nd Anniversary so I used my time before work to find a good quote and posted a throwback picture on social media. It was nice to just have some time to relax since I have had something going on every night for the last 2 weeks (I coached swimming Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday this week). So I planned to workout after work, but that didn’t happen as I actually cooked a decent dinner vs leftovers, so it became my rest day.

Friday morning I did the same workout as Tuesday except I added a set of pull-ups, which I have been slacking on in recent weeks.

Saturday was my long run day- 7 miles. I was excited to really use my new watch. I completed the run on a path walking path because it flat, vs the rolling hills around my apartment. Thankfully even though my ankle was a little sore after the run on Wednesday, it doesn’t hurt to walk or run on it so the run went pretty good. The 7 miles seemed to go pretty fast because I kept getting distracted looking at my watch checking my speed. It was interested to compare my pace to how it felt to run… I felt like I was running a lot faster than my watch was telling me, so its going to be a learning curve. I finished the run with an average 9:14 pace, which I was satisfied with.

After my run, I was in a car for 2 hours traveling to celebrate my Grandmothers 80th birthday. Almost all of my Dads side of the family was there -aunts, uncles, and all of my cousins, we were just missing 2 of my brothers. As I was talking with some of my cousins whom I haven’t seen in a while, I realized how nice it is that we are all able to come together for one person to celebrate and enjoy each others company. Not to be a downer, but I realized I have yet to have an event -large birthday party, engagement, wedding, shower, etc where everyone comes just for me. I am looking forward to that overwhelming love and gratitude that comes with being the ‘guest of honor’. I am also at the point in my life as my grandparents get higher in age that it’s even more important for family to get together as often as possible to celebrate life greatest moments and milestones and create these fun memories. The party was a success.

In other news this week, I am still plugging away at 4 different books; The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry- which I am trying to finish by the end of this weekend, Running for Women- which I haven’t made much progress on in the last 2 weeks, 7 Steps of Closure – my fiction/chick lit book that entertains me during my lunch hour, and Why are all the Black kids sitting together in the cafeteria- a book that I am reading for a diversity discussion being held at my workplace. I also found some great articles I wanted to share; 7 Spiritual laws of Success and how to apply them and how to live a Year of Fear.

I hope you have a great week, I know I am looking forward to my 4 day weekend next week! What do you have to look forward to this week? What helps to keep you motivated?

 

Resolutions: Month 2 Check-in

Another month gone by, which means another update on my New Years Resolutions! How are you doing with your resolutions? Studies show that by now over 80% of people have already given up on their resolutions.As a way to keep myself out of the 80% I will be keeping up with these monthly check-ins since they help to keep me accountable.

Read about how I was doing at the end of January.

The main theme of my 2016 resolutions was “Don’t be afraid to Try”….

  • to train for a marathon: I haven’t started officially training for this, as I am currently 3 weeks into training for my 3rd half marathon on May 1st. But once that is complete, then my focus will shift to marathon training.
  • to find my true purpose in my career– This will continue to be a work in progress, but I have downloaded a book The Quit Alternative:The Blueprint for Creating the Job you love WITHOUT quitting By Ben Fanning (currently $.99 on Kindle download) which I plan to read in March or April. Also during a 1:1 meeting with my boss, I admitted that some day I would like to be a Director or Administrator. My boss’s response was “if you want to be, you will be”. I do enjoy WHERE I am working now but know I am not in my ‘forever’ position. I know there is a lot still to learn and I am anxious to learn it, but it’s evident that I enjoy teaching others, which is one of the reasons I coach, so I’d like to find a way to incorporate that may into my full time job. 
  • to treat others better and think before I speak when sharing my opinions on things I been myself catching myself and wondering how it will come across to someone based on their life experiences, especially at work. Its still a work in progress, but just taking a moment to stop and think, especially when I am venting has hopefully helped me to try not to offend the person I am talking to or say some I’d regret.
  • to do things outside my comfort zone I took some steps in this category this month. I reached out to someone I went to high school but didn’t really know to see if they wanted to carpool to work with me. Although the carpooling didn’t work out, I did step outside my comfort zone to also ask to meet up at a Happy Hour in the city we work in, it went well, and now I have a new friend. (Yes, only a friend K.S 😉 ) But I was proud of myself for not chickening out.  Something else I did, was ask my boss whether my recently completed MBA had any impact on my compensation, she did answer no, since it was considered when I was hired; but I had been waiting to ask for months, and finally ripped off the band-aid. Never know unless you ask right?
  • to make time to read more booksAfter nearly 8 weeks off from tv shows due to their mid-season breaks, I realized I wasn’t as interested in a few more shows anymore, so  canceled the recordings on my DVR without second guessing, and you know what’s, I haven’t missed them! That step has also helped me with reducing clutter in my life (see below). Besides less tv opening up time, I am currently reading 4 different books- 1 (soon to be 2) for a work related discussion, 2 that I read during lunch rotating depending on my mood & 1 at bedtime. I know if I read one it would go faster but having a book at work, at home and in my phone (kindle) allows me to read whenever I want and not have to remember to bring a book with me.
  • to reduce clutter in my life: Earlier this month, I took some time and cleaned out emails that have been sitting in my inbox for months, and some even years. I left emails in an inbox thinking that if they were there I would eventually make the recipes, complete the workouts, share the quotes, etc. But if I haven’t gotten to them now, I figured I didn’t need to keep looking at them, so I archived or deleted emails. With fewer emails cluttering my inbox I don’t feel like there is always something I should be doing or reading, I already have enough to try to fit into my schedule! Plus if I need a recipe I can go to the folder I sorted it in and if I wanted to mix up my workouts I can just goggle a new one! As I heard in a recent podcast, that’s what search functions are for whether it’s in your email or the Internet. After I finished this purging of about 10-15 emails in each inbox I have,school, work, home, I felt much better, lighter, and it inspired me to keep going with other items in my life. With that in mind, my bag of ‘clothes to donate’ has continued to grow. If it doesn’t “bring me joy”, and if I wouldn’t buy it if I saw it in the store now, it has been taken out of my closet and dressers!
  • to eliminate excuses and procrastinationAlthough last month I felt like I was doing pretty well with this, this month it was more of struggle. There are still some days, that are better than others and it depends on the task. Though I suppose some of the above could be considered progressing in this category. But it is something I am more aware of, but no specific examples on my success in achieving this goal this month. I hope to be able to have a better report next month.

What do you find is your biggest struggle with it comes to sticking with your resolutions? Have you changed them since January 1st?

Resolutions: 1 Month in

Happy February! I am a few days off of my usual Friday posts that recap my week, but my weekend got away from me due to hanging out with friends and spending time with my family. So I thought today, a Monday and the 1st of a month, would be a good day to write about my past week and share an update on the progress of my resolutions, one month in.

I’ll start with the weekly recap starting with last Monday. My week didn’t start off great as I locked my keys in the car… with the car running. So how did I do this… my automatic car starter re-locks the car doors if you unlock the car with the key fob within a very short amount of time after starting it, even with the keys in the ignition, Something I didn’t know this until that day! THANKFULLY my cell phone wasn’t locked in the car, so it could’ve been a lot worse as I was able to call my Dad for help. As I waited for him I thought about a lot of things…. how to prevent this from happening again, a backup place for spare keys, making sure to always have my phone in my coat pocket, and feeling grateful that I lived close to family that someone could come help me vs having to wait for roadside assistance.  I also thought about if this is the way my week is starting, I should just go back to bed! Do you ever have those days?

When I finally got to work, it was pretty quiet but what made my commute worthwhile was my workout after work. I went to the Wellness Clinic, and planned to use a non-impact cardio machine as my ankle was bothering me after 2 days on the treadmill last week. However, after 5 minutes into that, one of the trainers asked if I wanted to join an impromptu spinning class. At first I said no, but he insisted it would be fun, so I caved. There were about 6 other people the trainer gathered for the class, and we ended up completing 20 minutes of interval training then 20 minutes of just steady riding. Afterward the trainer invited anyone to join him for some core work. I figured “why not”, and 2 other people did the core work too. I was enjoying being the moment- being a part of group exercise, chatting with other people, and challenging myself to different exercises that I wouldn’t have done on my own- I didn’t want to leave. This experience just added to my reasoning of enjoying the wellness clinic vs the campus fitness center, which is personal attention and friendly conversations. Unfortunately the trainer who lead me through all of this, left for another job at the end of last week. Hopefully the replacement will be just as personable.

I coached 3 nights last week, so I worked out at home before work those days. Tues/Thurs we strength training and Wednesday was a Cardio DVD. Fridaym I was back in the wellness clinic- with only 3 other people in the whole place! My goal on the treadmill was intervals, so I ran 3 minutes @ 7.1 (8:27), then walked 1 min @ 4.2 pace (14:27). Repeated for 35 minutes, then the last 5 minutes I ran at 7.2 pace (8:20). After the treadmill it was 5 minutes of core work (ab wheel and side planks) then I was done for the day. Although I felt good after this workout, I did not leave with the same runner’s high as I did last week. But I was there on a Friday after work, so that’s what is important! Success is built on consistency, right?

In other news of the week, I officially registered for my 3rd half marathon which will be May 1st. My best time for a half is a 1:58:58 (9 min pace), which I ran in May 2014. I am hoping to best that time, maybe break 1:55.

Final topic of the post….1 Month into the new year….. how are you doing with your resolutions? My main resolution was “Don’t be afraid to try..”

  • to train for a marathon   Update: Registered for 9.18.16 race, half marathon training will provide a great base for this
  • to find my true purpose in my career    Update: A few weeks ago I took the StrengthFinders quiz, and discovered my #1 Strength is “Learner”, which is different from when I took this quiz in college (almost 8 years ago), my strength then was “Achiever”. But this new result makes complete sense because when I was working my MBA I felt fulfilled as I was learning something new on a regular basis. This also explains why when I do not have a constant workload I get bored.  I plan on sharing this with my boss as a way to help her better understand my personality and why I am constantly asking for things to do! This conversation will probably fall under the “outside my comfort zone” category below.
  • to treat others better and think before I speak     Update: I know I could be doing better at this, especially with family. I was more conscious of this in the first 2 weeks of January, but it has dropped off my radar a little, and I know this is very important for my relationships(of any kind) for me to do better.
  • to do things outside my comfort zone    Update: This is always easier said than done, but right now in my mind this will include asking bold questions and have conversations to various people, especially when it comes to work.  I also published a blog post about what truly defines success, which I almost didn’t publish it because it was out of my ‘norm’, but it is now my most viewed post ever! Thank you for all who read it, it means A LOT to me!
  • to make time to read more books   Update: I have read 4 books, but have not progressed much with Fates & Furies in the last week. I have been seriously considering cutting the cable cord, and know that would open up more time to read books… or I may just end up binge watching shows as a replacement!
  • to reduce clutter in my life   Update: I have filled a box with random items in my apartment that I don’t use or don’t really like. That box is still in my apartment, which my 5 year old nephew found and decided that my “trash” was his “treasure” and wanted to take some item home with him (sorry to my sister in law).  I still have more clothes to go through, but I have started. 
  • to eliminate excuses and procrastination   Update: This has been especially applicable to my chores. Instead of delaying cleaning until the weekend I have been trying to complete chores for 5-10 minutes each night. This resolution also applies to me making time for exercise especially in the early mornings,  when my alarm goes off early and all I want to do is sleep!

As I review all of the resolutions, it’s evident I still have some work to do, but by planning on reviewing on a monthly basis I am trying to hold myself accountable for making at least some progress each month.

Thought of the week: What can you do today that you weren’t capable of a year ago? A year from now, what will you wish you started? What are you waiting for?

Another Step Closer

3 weeks into the new year, and this week ended on a high note.

It was a good week fitness wise, I completed my 2 orientations to the Wellness Clinic at work for the Mind, Body, Me program I mentioned last week. The orientations consisted of meeting with one of the student fitness specialist, talking about my fitness goals (half marathon, marathon and increase muscles), what roadblocks I may have to prevent me from reaching my fitness goals (commuting, other commitments), and how I will resolve those challenges (prioritizing). I was also given a tour of the facility and instructed on how to use each piece of equipment. After the 2nd orientation, I asked when I could have a personalized fitness plan created, and they said that after going consistently for a few weeks they will sit down with me and write-up a more specific plan. So that gives something to look forward to. I used the clinic twice this week to run on the treadmill, something I am not a fan of, but I did it anyway. My first run on Monday was a little over 3 miles, and just a steady run. My 2nd run was today, Friday, a day which I wanted to stay in bed all day because I had a head cold. A day that I wasn’t sure how I would feel working out, but felt good that I was at least showing up. I started off warming up on the treadmill, then increased the speed to run and decided to complete intervals, 3 minutes run, 1 minute walk, repeat for 30 minutes. I started the running speed at 7 (8:34 pace), and the walk was speed 4.1(14:38). It wasn’t until the last 5 minutes when I increased the speed to 7.2 (8:20 mile) on my run just to see if I could do it, and see how long I could maintain it for. I was pleasantly surprised at how well I did since I haven’t run that speed in quite a while. After I finished my run I was glad I challenged myself with the speed and actually felt MUCH better physically than I did before my run. It would have been so easy to use being sick as an excuse to skip my run, but I was proud of myself for getting the run in, and was rewarded with a great runner’s high and feeling much better. Just goes to show that even though I woke up thinking today was going to be a rough day fighting a cold, I got home in a great mood all because of exercise.

“Do not limit yourself because of what you think you can’t do, AMAZE yourself when you DO the things you thought you could never do”

Besides getting back on track with running, I have been doing some strength training exercises- lunges, pull-ups, push-ups, planks, single leg RDLs, rows, lateral raises and bicep curls. I feel the more focused reps/sets have been more beneficial for muscle tone. I also did a little yoga this week, and 20 minutes of it made me sore the next day, so I want to try to work that a little more to help my core and flexibility.

Brief update on my reading… as mentioned, I started Fates & Furies, last week but after 30 pages I found myself having a really hard time getting through it. It’s not the vocabulary is hard, it more the style it is written is not something I like and the story isn’t anything like I thought it’d be. I chatted with my fellow book club ladies, and those who had finished it said they liked it, so I have continued reading. It has gotten a little better, but I haven’t gotten to the point where I don’t want to put it down. Unlike my lunchtime reading book Emmy & Oliver, which is a young adult book, I find it much more enjoyable and easier to read and I am always looking forward to reading more. I will probably finish that book this weekend.

What’s something good that has happened to you this week to bring you one step closer to your goals?

 

One Step at a Time

Second full week into the new year, and my theme of the week turned out to be: One Step at a Time.

On Monday, I went through an orientation to join a Health & Wellness program at my workplace, called Mind Body Me (MBM).  This program gives me access to the Wellness Clinic, in addition to my already free access to the fitness center on campus, and I can sign up with a Personal Trainer, attend various fitness classes and get prizes for being active. It was a lot of information at one time, and it was a lot to think about all the ways I would like to improve or maintain my health and fitness, and meet some of the proposed timelines to receive rewards through the program. I want to get the most out of the program, but I just ended up feeling a little overwhelmed  trying to determine how I would fit this program into my already pretty full daily schedule which includes commuting 40 miles each way and coaching shortly after I get home from work.

On my drive home that day, I remembered how I felt when I was pursuing my MBA, when at the beginning of each semester I would get stressed/overwhelmed with the assigned work ahead of me, and wondering when I would complete it all on time. The only way I ended up getting through my MBA was taking everything, one step and one day at a time. You can’t do everything at once, and if you try to do too much at once you are more likely to fail and give up.

Without getting to the point of making a list of everything I juggle during my days/week- fitness, commuting, coaching, etc and feeling like I really need to prioritize these items better,I made the decision that for now the MBM program will consist of me continuing what I am doing fitness wise at home until I am not coaching as many hours. I will complete all necessary orientations for MBM and read through the handful of booklets I received and just slim down what areas I want to improve on when my schedule allows.  The MBM program isn’t going anywhere, I will have access to the Fitness Center and Wellness Clinic throughout the year, so there is no need to overwhelm myself in January while I am still trying to get into the routine of staying on track with my other resolutions. One thing at a time!

As far as my workouts this week, I was able to get a 3 mile run done on a treadmill on Monday, with the plan to run tomorrow morning. I want to try to run at least 2 days a week, with the plan of getting it up to 3x by mid-February when I know I will really have to buckle down and start training for a half marathon, and then my first marathon in the fall. I am already thinking about what it will be line to be training for a race for at least 6 months. I feel good training for my half, since I have already successful done so twice, but I just have to make or find a plan to carry me through the 4 months between my half marathon and marathon. I have been listening to a lot of helpful podcast lately (Running on Om & The Productivity Show), and it’s helping to remind me to not only take things one step at a time, but to keep the end goal in mind knowing all the hard work will be worth it. “In the midst of an ordinary training day, I try to remind myself that I am preparing for the extraordinary”-Shalane Flanagan

Other events going on during my week are I started the book Fates and Furies by Lauren Groff, for my Long-Distance Women’s Reading Club. My cousin’s wife started this group through Facebook last summer, and I am enjoying reading books that I probably would have never discovered on my own. We vote on and read a new book every month, then have a discussion when completed.

That’s all for this week, I will leave you with this quote: “When the road ahead seems too rough, challenge yourself to acknowledge that there’s absolutely nothing about your present circumstances that prevents you from making progress, one small step at a time.”

Have a great week.