Good luck to everyone with weight loss resolutions this year!
Good luck to everyone with weight loss resolutions this year!
Happy belated Thanksgiving! I hope you all had a terrific day. Usually, I’m not really excited for Thanksgiving, but this year I actually liked it. What was different? Well, let’s compare it with last year (which was a pretty typical year).
Last year, we:
This year, we:
T’s mother’s first cousin, Mary, decided to host a giant Thanksgiving this year and invited the entire, extended family. Why? This is why:
Mary owns a hostel/wedding venue so there was plenty of room for all sorts of extended family – and all sorts of relatives flew in from all over the country. In total, this Thanksgiving dinner included 43 other people! (including 3 other vegetarians!)
After dinner, we all partook in some square dancing! (Thanks to the baby for taking a nap so both T and I could participate, even though we weren’t planning on it – it was actually a lot more fun than I was expecting). There was contra dancing after the baby woke up. I’ve never done this much cardio AFTER the meal before!
Friday had more events! The baby and I drove back (T had to work… boo!) for an arts and crafts project of creating a topiary!
And Friday night, after dinner (T arrived for dinner) there was a talent show! And the family was all really talented! There were lots of musicians, some dancers, one cousin did some crazy push ups (including clapping and spinning 360° from a push up position!), and even some comedy/magic!
It was awesome!
It even motivated T to play the guitar again, which he hasn’t done in a few years. He has to get ready for the next time the family does this sort of event. I hope that’s really soon because it was so much fun!
Happy belated Thanksgiving from my little family:
Oh… and here are some of the Thanksgivings images I thought about posting, but clearly didn’t get to on time:
Because who doesn’t need one once in awhile?
I ran, I ran, I ran! I am so stupidly excited about this!!!
If you’re not a regular reader, or you’ve forgotten the details, let me catch you up: I was a bit of a runner (not serious by ANY standards!) and then I got pregnant. I was sidelined for months thanks to morning sickness, major food aversions, and general exhaustion (I had no idea building such a tiny human was so tiring!). I saw my doctor last month and she gave me permission to run, but only for 5-10 minutes at a time, which I assumed would be my body’s max anyway. Afterall, I haven’t run since September.
Once getting cleared, I was really nervous about the belly jiggling and feeling awkward in the tiny gym at my office. But I worked up my confidence with yoga and the arc trainer at the gym (sort of a cross between a stair master and an elliptical). I went down for a late lunch-break on Friday and found the gym was empty! I was so pumped!
My goal for the walk/run was a total of 2 – 2.5 miles, and I was hoping to run 1/4 mile, walk, run 1/2 mile, walk, run 1/4 mile. But I figured I would go with however I was feeling – good or bad.
I warmed up for 1/4 mile and then increased the speed to an easy, slow run. My legs were wanting to increase the speed, but the ligaments in my belly (which vaguely hurt all the time from the expanding tummy thing) were not loving it. They quieted down pretty quickly though and I continued on.
By the time I looked down to see how I was doing, I had almost run an entire mile! So I finished the mile and slowed back to a walk (my slow mile was a little over 10 minutes and I didn’t want to push my luck).
Honestly, the belly wiggled a little, but not nearly as much as I expected (I may have been worried that it would bounce frantically like my ponytail) . I feel like I want to look into some sort of weight belt or something though, just to hold it up a little (suggestions will be taken happily!).
My end distance totals were as follows:
I basically did a 5k at lunch (which is what I liked to run on my lunch breaks before becoming preggers). I’m so excited because I didn’t think I could do it. I would love to run a real 5k super round (like 8 months pregnant, not just the 5 months that I am now) and this feels like the first step towards that. Honestly, my legs felt like I could have kept running, but I didn’t want to over do anything.
And one of the benefits of the yoga was that I knew some stretches for my tummy after running (which I have NEVER focused on before).
I know this seems like a really small accomplishment, especially to runners (heck, even to the old me who happily ran a 10k), but it feels amazing to me in my new body that I’m still trying to figure out.
Yay! I can still call myself a runner!
I went back to prenatal yoga at Destination Maternity this week as planned (if you are pregnant and live near this chain retail store, I recommend checking them out for their free classes). Unfortunately, this time around, the class contained more of my fears than the first one.
When I went last week, it was a small class and we had a substitute instructor (one of the weekend instructors filled in). This week, the class had almost doubled in size, but was all different people, and the regular instructor was back (she was totally nice, but was different). Also, I got stuck next to a woman who was 8 months pregnant and crazy flexible. It’s so hard not to compare oneself to those around us, isn’t it?
I’m not flexible… at all! I was never flexible and on top of that, I’ve had back surgery – making my back extra tight. In fact, at one point, the instructor came over to pull on my hips because my back didn’t look right. So then I awkwardly had to mention that I’ve had back surgery. So then she immediately stopped touching me (as though I was on fire) so as not to injure me. Ugh… I’m a train wreck. I totally could have benefitted from her help, but I always want to warn people not to have high expectations because fused vertebrae don’t function the way you want them to. I wish I could have really talked to her, but it was just a big ball of awkward with lots of witnesses…
There was really only one downside to having a different instructor: the poses and sequences were different. It made everything feel new again and made me feel more insecure.
Something that I loved about being a beginning runner was that I could do it on my own. I would run along a trail with only a few other people around. I didn’t run on the street or at a gym (although I had tried both in the past), which felt in the open where other people could see me. I loved that I could change my pace as needed without any assumed judgement from others. (Let’s be real, no one actually cares, but it feels like they do when you’re red-faced and just starting out). I loved that I could repeat my trail over and over again, day after day to “get it right”. I was competing against myself until I got good at it. Every day, I would try to run at least 10 feet more than where I stopped to walk the time before (or to the next lamp-post or to the end of the next song). And when I ran that trail from start to finish without a break, I felt amazing and so proud of how far I had come in my own growth!
But with yoga, I don’t feel like I’m mastering things, everything still feels new and awkward and constantly changing. And I know it will get better. I know that when I’m über round at 8 1/2 months pregnant and actually know some of the poses, I will feel as though I’ve improved. It’s just so hard to get there.
And all of this makes me think about the “January Joiners” at the gym (you know, those people who make a New Year’s resolution to get fit and suddenly join the gym). If you are one of those people: good luck! You can totally do it! Just give yourself a chance (and ignore everyone around you).
If you’re a regular at the gym and are feeling a little irritated by all the new people at your gym: take a minute and think about how it felt when you first joined, or if you didn’t struggle, imagine how hard it might be for them. Please, try to make them feel welcome. More fit and happy people can only be a positive thing for our communities (the exercise community as well as your local community).
Being new at the gym can be so intimidating as you’re pushing your own physical limitations as well as feeling uncomfortable in the new environment. Let’s all try to feel welcoming.
I know that when I attended this second class and it was ALL new faces, I was intimidated all over again. It’s so easy to think that everyone around you thinks you’re an idiot if you’re a novice, let’s try to keep that in mind. If you’re not a novice: be welcoming and smile at the new people. If you are a novice: smile a lot at strangers and try to remember that no one is judging you as harshly as you’re judging you.
Or at least that’s what I’m trying to tell myself… (we’ll see how it all goes after I try a weekend class this weekend).