I’m Back! You missed me!

0

Kim2015A

Hey guys! This has been a crazy year. I moved back to Houston last summer. It was a rocky start, but things have been really good lately. I gained a lot of weight back my first few months here (close to 40 pounds), and I’ve been slowly losing it over the past few months. I’ve also been researching which exercises programs really work for me. I have PCOS, and I am finally starting to realize I need a program that’s specific to PCOS.

I started a 5k program a few months back, and I enjoyed running again. I did lose a small amount of weight, but my progress was really slow. I did my research and discovered I should be lifting weights. I also found doing large amounts of cardiovascular exercise is actually bad for your body, and it ages you faster. At the same time, I watched a friend’s weight loss progress with lifting weights. She also has PCOS, and she lost a lot of weight from weight training a few times a week. I signed up for a months worth of personal training at a powerlifting gym… And I’ve seen huge results over the past 4 weeks! I am more toned, and I’ve lost fat, too. Wahoo!

Now I go to the gym 5 days a week. My gym doesn’t have AC, and I sweat a TON. After all, it’s the summer in Houston! My trainer says the sweating will get all the toxins out of my body, and it’ll be easier to lose fat. As an added benefit, I’ve noticed I have really, really awesome skin now (say good bye to black heads!!).

I haven’t been doing a lot of cardio. My trainer says if you lift most days of the week, your metabolism will stay pretty high and you don’t need a ton of cardio. I do add on a little cardio at the end of my sessions, because my glycogen levels are low, which means I’ll burn off stored fat. I am thinking I will increase the cardio now that I’m used to lifting weights, but I won’t do a ton if lifting keeps working how it is now.

… And guess what? I’m getting super strong!!

Advertisements

I won my first race!

3

LIVVYSLOVE12

My shiny new medal!

This weekend Tricia and I ran the Livvy’s Love 5k out in Stone Mountain, Georgia. It was neat running a race so close to Stone Mountain, even at a mere 27 degrees. Yes, it was 27 degrees when we ran our race! When I woke up and saw how cold it was outside, I honestly thought of canceling. Then I remembered what the race is all about– giving back to the community after a little girl lost her life in a tragic school bus accident– And I knew I couldn’t cancel. I layered my clothes like crazy and put a smile on my face. My asthma is triggered by the cold, so this was a concern for me during the race. I simply walked when my wheezing and breathing got out of hand. Asthma wasn’t keeping this chick down!

Running the race with Tricia was really fun. She’s a bit faster and has better breathing than I do, but she’d say, “how about we run to next tree” or say, “how about we run again” to get my back from walking faster. She encouraged me to run more at the beginning of the race, but she suggested running at a slower pace so we could walk less and run more (good idea!). By the time we turned around at the half way point, I had warmed up and we sprinted to the finish line. I was so surprised when we ran the race in 35 minutes!! We ran a 11 minute mile! When I ran my last race in October, I was at a 15 minute mile. I was so excited to see how well we did. When I saw the numbers at the finish line, I pushed to finish at top speed.

Before the race began, a local Zumba instructor warmed up the crowd. She also held Zumba classes during and after the race. There was food and a meet and greet after the race. While it was still super cold, I wanted to stay and soak up the amazing atmosphere a little longer. I wanted to feel the energy be around everyone who cares so much about the cause of the Livvy’s Love foundation. I encouraged Trisha, heavily encouraged, Tricia to stay just a little bit longer for the award handouts. To our amazement, they called my name for first place in my age group. Trica won second for her age group! We both thought it was hilarious, because we totally didn’t think we’d win. We called her mom after, and she asked, “Were you the only ones in your age group?” Maybe, but we still won!

I was amazed at how much faster I ran from October– seeing my new pace gave me the confidence to get back outside and run again.

livvyslove

Before the race… So cold!!


livvy

Trica receiving her medal from the founders of the Livvy’s Love Foundation. Such amazing people! I can’t wait to run next year!

Running Start

4

RUNNERS

Today Jessica and I (finally!!) took the Good Form Running class at Big Peach Running Co. I mentioned wanting to go before I started training for my half marathon, and I really wish I had taken the class before I started running to prevent the shin splints I had at the end of 2013. The class was super informative, and we both learned what we need to work on to be better runners. I learned I was running with a heel strike, and I need to stretch more to loosen up my calf muscles. I also surprised myself that I have more muscle than I think I do and having a weak core is not my issue anymore. By the end of the class, the instructor said I was running with a mid-foot strike. Success!

We went over the four basic principles of proper running form, which are posture, the mid-foot strike, cadence, and lean. I’ve watched video after video after video trying to achieve this running form, but I couldn’t put the skills into practice on my own. For instance, I couldn’t figure out how to get my body to run in with the mid-foot strike. In class, our instructor had us practice marching in place so we could feel how our feet should be hitting the ground. Then we starting running from marching, and we instantly had better running form. He instructed us to practice this move outside of class. A good trick is to march while waiting at a stop light to keep yourself moving and to remind yourself of the proper foot strike. For more information on proper running form, check out the Good Form Running website– I have it book marked!!

Jessica and I go back in two weeks for the second portion of the class. In the second class, we’ll go over proper stretching and core building exercises (which include one legged squats!). I am excited for the second class and to try out my form next weekend at my 5k. The timing on my classes couldn’t have been better.

Here’s to my running start on 2014!

… And my fantastic lunch today!

lunch

Happy New Year

0

foodprep988I wanted to write a super awesome New Years post about my resolutions and goals this year, but that’ll have to come later. I’m pretty tuckered out from all the New Year festivities. Above you can see a then and now picture from Thanksgiving, and you can see some of my progress. Especially now, I am definitely seeing progress. Yesterday I went clothes shopping, and I had to put back all the size extra large and large shirts. I had to buy mediums! When I started my journey, I was a size 1XL! I was plus size, and now I’m a medium. It doesn’t seem real yet, I’m super excited to keep up the exercise and food prep and see my results throughout the year.

Slim by summer! <— That’s my resolution/goal!!

kim12

And to not take life so seriously. 

foodprep9foodprep88

My food preps have gotten pretty good, huh? Happy New Year! Stay dedicated!

“The difference between a goal and a dream is a deadline.” – Stephen Smith

0

followyourdreams

It’s winter. It’s cold. Do not let the bad weather stop you. Pick a race, set a goal, and go for it. Setting goals turns dreams into reality. One of my favorite quotes is, “dream as if you’ll live forever, live as if you’ll die tomorrow.” Setting goals is the second part of this quote. By setting goals, you’re living like you may not get another chance to make your dreams come true. I’m taking my own advice. On January 18th, I am running a 5k with my friend Tricia. I am finally getting back to running outside. I’ve been working out a ton, but running outside still gives me anxiety (and I’ve been avoiding it). I’ve set a goal, though, and I am going to kill the 5k! I’ve always dreamed of being a runner, and I don’t care if it takes me a million tries, I am going to be a runner. So, I ran outside at the park today with Sophie, and I did surprisingly well. It’s all mental, people!

Along these same lines, I’ve wanted to write a blog for the past couple weeks about the anxiety and shame overweight people have when they first start working out. I said to myself too many times to count that I’d join a gym once I lost enough weight to not be the fat lady at the gym. I know I am not alone on this, either. I also always wanted to grab some shoes and run on the sidewalk, but I didn’t want others to see my belly bounce or see my terrible form. Worst yet, I didn’t want them to look at me a think, “look at her trying to be thin, she’ll never lose weight” and laugh out-loud at me. I didn’t want people to know if I failed. I’m telling you, I had these thoughts daily as I ate Taco Bell secretly in my car at night. I’d think this would be my last fast food meal, and I’d start working out soon. Then all the anxieties and images of super fit and “perfect” people at the gym pointing and staring and actually coming up to me and saying I’m too fat to be at the gym. My fears were really, really detailed! Sometimes I’d cry and sometimes the Taco Bell was comforting. I’d go back home and go back to Taco Bell the very next day.

I remember when I first started running with Jessica (who is very slim but works out a ton) at LA Fitness. I was done with my run, and she was going to run a little longer. She told me to stretch. There was another row of treadmills behind us packed with people (all really in shape people). She kept looking back and telling me to stretch. I just stood there paralyzed. I didn’t want the people to see me try to touch my toes and stretch, and I didn’t want to admit to her I was too embarrassed to stretch in front of others. Finally, she finished up and we stretched off to the side.

I was surprised when I read Fit to Fat to Fit, because it’s about a male trainer who purposely gained weight to understand his clients better and to show them weight loss is possible. He went from super confident to experiencing some of the same fears of judgement and social anxiety I’ve experienced since gaining weight. He stood in front of his closet trying on clothes over and over to find something that made him look less fat. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been late to hang out with friends, because I’ve tried on twenty shirts to find out that hides my back fat roll (which I no longer have!!) and my stomach bulge. I’ve actually canceled many, many times with friends at the last minute, because I couldn’t bare the thought of being the fat chick at a bar or swanky restaurant. To all my friends, I apologize. I’m surprised ya’ll stuck around with how many times I’ve shown up late or not at all.

Being heavy consumed me. It took over my life. I couldn’t get up from my desk at work without thinking about looking fat in front of my coworkers. I could go on and on and on. I never changed, though, because I had irrational fears of active people rejecting me. The funny this is, now that I work out at the gym and in a challenging group exercise class, I know my fears couldn’t be further from the truth. At my group workout class, Blast 900, so many of my classmates have come up to me after class to tell me good job. They’ll comment and say it’s great I’ve made it to so many classes. If my form is bad, they’ll stop to show me lift the weights the right way. In the gym, no one has ever looked at me weird or said anything mean. My fears were all in my head. Furthermore, I now know a lot of active people are really positive people. They’re excited you’re getting healthy, because they’re passionate about health. They want everyone to be healthy! They’re proud of you for trying to get into shape.

And you know what, if I ever do run into the one negative person who does say something about my weight, I don’t care what they have to say about me or my form or my fat rolls or anything else for that matter. I’m out there trying. I’m out there trying to be better. That’s what matters. You’re out there trying. You’re out there trying to be better. That’s what matters. Please don’t allow yourself to be trapped in the same cycle I was stuck in for years. It’s such a debilitating state to live in– just step into a gym or go for a run outside– you’ll be glad you did.

It’s all mental, people!

P.S. Check out this kickass kickboxing class you can do with dumballs or just your arms at home. I loved it!

Winter Wonderland

2

kimandcecwinter9winter

The morning after the Thanksgiving race, I woke up incredibly ill. I had a fever for days and a bad sore throat. I am just now starting to feel better, but I’m still a little congested. I decided not to work out while sick in order to let my body rest and heal. I was really upset about it, though. I had just started rebuilding my endurance back from my cold last month. However, I did do daily yoga and a little Zumba to try to keep up some of my endurance this time. I do think it helped, because I worked out with my trainer today. I did get out of breath from being congested, and from the cold, but I don’t think I totally lost all my endurance this time around (hooray!).

Cecilia and I met up at the park. It was 43 degrees and wet out from the rain. Yes, I totally fell at one point! We did drills and ran a bit. I’m glad I met with her, because I wouldn’t have pushed myself nearly as hard with still being a little sick. Plus, we work on my coordination, which I really love. I am the most uncoordinated person ever. No joke. No really… It’s bad! She noticed I am becoming more coordinated. It’s been a slow process, but it’s excited to really see progress. If you’re naturally athletic, you’re super lucky! I’m just going to fake it until I make it, though. 🙂

In other news, my friend Tricia and I signed up for a 5k in January. We’re going to start running again! This time, though, we’re going to slowly increase our milage in order to prevent injuries. Maybe I’ll be a runner one day after all!

kimwinter4

Food-wise, since I couldn’t work out, I made sure to food prep. I finally tried meat loaf muffins. They’re totally yummy and easy to transport to work. Totally making them again!

foodprep

 

 

 

Jessica, Christina, & TJ Did It!!!

3

cheering

Yesterday, at a mere 32 degrees, Jessica, Christina, and TJ (and maybe a few thousand others) ran the Atlanta Half Marathon. Excuse me, I mean, they killed the Atlanta Half Marathon! Not only did they run 13.1 miles, they ran 13.1 super, super, super, crazy hilly miles! Jessica’s boyfriend, my boyfriend, and I went out to cheer them on. It was awesome to see everyone come over the finish line all excited. I was also amazed to see a huge number of senior citizens running the race. I was awestruck to see so many senior citizens celebrate at the end of the race. It was totally worth getting up early and having a freezing face! And, who knows, maybe I’ll run next year! My Blast 900 class is whooping me into shape! 

Check out Jessica finishing the race (look how great she looks after running a half marathon!) and a few other Race Day photos!

jessicafinisherfinishlinefinisherschickenrace

I’ll leave you with a photo of me getting ready for Thanksgiving dinner (so much to be thankful for this year!), and a photo of what happens when you don’t invite a certain very, very spoiled dog (Sophie *cough, cough*) to Thanksgiving dinner!

mememecouch

 

Feeling Thankful

1

poster2

Jessica is right. It is important for athletes and runners to see the crowd cheering them on during a big race. It is also important for me to be able to cheer on others who I look up to for their strengths and abilities. Therefore, I am going to cheer Jessica and Christina on at the finish line at the Atlanta Half Marathon on Thanksgiving Day. They were also so patient with me while I was starting out, and I am very thankful for their kind words during my time of struggle. I hope my cheers help them just a little bit to finish the race on their big day. I also hope the other runners are happy to see the big crowds, too. I made a Thanksgiving themed sign. 🙂

Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Please remember what’s important during this time of year– tell everyone you care about you love them and appreciate them– and do your part in inspiring others, as well!

posterposter1poster3

“Autumn… the year’s last, loveliest smile.” ― William Cullen Bryant

2

prettyatlsky

The past couple of weeks have been a wirlwind! We had Halloween, my birthday (had a great friend breakfast and went to the World of Coke), a trip to Houston, and work has been crazy! I’ve been on IG a lot, because it’s faster, but I’ve missed posting here. I did crossfit in Houston with my friend, Barbara. I had a great time, and I really enjoyed the group aspect of the work out. I’ve also been working out with my trainer, and we went hiking at Kennesaw Mountain today. I had a blast, and it was a total workout! I’ve been working on my diet (trying to cut out sugar, especially).

I need to start working on my cardio routine again, though. I need to find a routine that works for me, but it’s all a work in progress. I’m trying to decide if I want to try crossfit or do this Blast 900 class which combines cardio and weights with interval training. Or I keep going to the gym on my own. I’m hoping I pick one soon!

I am trying to say no to all the extra holiday treats. This is a tough time of year to try to be healthy! I’m going to keep trying, though. It’s tough to say no to all the wonderful cookies the venders keep sending. Not going to lie. 😉

Here’s a ton of pictures of my workouts, hikes, food prep, and a few fun ones!

KennesawM

parkwithsophie1

parkwithsophie

park

StoneMount

FreshMarket

wholefoods

yummybreakfast

mealprep

foodprep2

Screen Shot 2013-11-10 at 6.54.43 PM

pumpkinpieshake

crossfit

Screen Shot 2013-11-10 at 6.56.10 PM

Bday

 

Moving Forward

0

gymkimhummusyummy

Well, I have to admit I won’t be running the half marathon on Thanksgiving. It was too much on my body, and I worried I’d cause permanent damage to my ankle. It started to get to the point where I never felt rested, and I wasn’t building any endurance or strength. I may go back to training somewhere down the road, but for now, I need to accept I’m starting from the beginning. I’m still working out and eating right, but I’m running less. I was really sad at first, but I have to be realistic with my body. I may have been too ambitious, but I am still chugging along to get healthy. I have plenty of time to try and run a half marathon. 🙂

I’ve started working on the weight machines at the gym by myself, which I’ve always been too embarrassed to do. I really enjoy lifting and the weight machines. I’d pick lifting over cardio anyway! I made a yummy hummus wrap for lunch tomorrow, and I can’t wait to eat it! Also, I officially have a boyfriend. I just thought I’d throw that in there. 😉