November 15, 2014

Picture motivation

It's been ridiculously cold the past few days! After running with Dean on Wednesday, it only continued to get colder. Wednesday was the day I was supposed to ride my bike, but this whole week has gotten kind of screwed up because of the half-marathon on Sunday, rest day on Monday, etc. Normally, I don't run on Wednesdays, but running with Dean was worth it ;) I decided to just do the biking on Thursday instead.

Except it was 28 degrees and snowing.

Since I made it a goal to bike once a week for all of November, I didn't want to skip it entirely. I wasn't sure if my membership was still active at the rec center, so I verified that it was, and then decided to go to there to use an indoor bike. The cardio room there is extremely boring (they have two TVs playing without sound--one of them is on Sports Center and the other is on the local access channel). I remembered this from the one or two other times I'd been in there, so I brought my phone and earbuds.

I was hoping to be the only one in there, so I wouldn't feel like an ass as I tried to figure out how to use the equipment. The fat girl in me still makes me feel so self-doubtful and out-of-place at the gym, if that makes any sense. Unfortunately, there were a couple of other women in there, so I just tried to pretend that I knew what I was doing.

There were a bunch of bikes, ellipticals, and treadmills. There was only one upright bike (most were recumbent); I knew I wanted the upright one, because it's better for cross-training for running. I hoped I wouldn't have to adjust the seat or anything, because I had no idea how to do that! As I was fiddling with my phone and earbuds, I was looking at the bike, trying to find the button to turn it on.

When I was ready to start, I just couldn't get it turned on. I was pushing all the buttons I could, pressing and holding the "Go" button, etc. Eventually, the woman behind me offered help--which, even though it was embarrassing, I was grateful for. She told me I had to pedal the bike for a few seconds and it would turn on automatically. Bingo--it worked.

The upright bike was nice, because I could just lean forward onto my elbows, which left my hands free to use my phone. I put on some music, and then browsed around Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter while I pedaled. I set the bike to a "rolling hills" workout, and it was pretty tough. I was really sweaty by the time I was done. I only did 30 minutes--much less than if I had biked outside, but there was no way that I wanted to do more than that in the cardio room!

My membership expires on December 3rd, but I think I will renew it so that I can continue to go through the winter. The rec center is only $100 for our whole family for a year, which is super cheap compared to gyms. It's nice when I want to use the indoor track or to take the kids swimming.

Yesterday was my long run day. My schedule was up to 7 miles already. It's kind of funny--when I started the new schedule, I was really looking forward to having "short" long runs (5 miles, 6 miles). That didn't last very long!

For yesterday's run, I knew I had to prepare for the cold. It was 28 degrees, but a "feels like" temp of 20. The wind wasn't too bad at 9 mph, but it felt SO much worse when it was that cold. I wore my Cold Gear tights, a long-sleeved top with a heavier long-sleeve top over it, a hat, and gloves. I also rubbed Aquaphor on my cheeks to hopefully block the wind a little.

I headed outside, and while I was expecting the cold, I was NOT expecting the ice! The shoulders of the roads I was running on had a thin layer of black ice on them, and it was hard to run on. The first mile wasn't bad (and since I did an out-and-back route, the last mile was the same). During the other miles, though, I spent a lot of the time focused on my footing, which was mentally exhausting. I was more worried about the cars hitting a patch of ice and sliding into me.

It wasn't a good run, overall. I didn't feel my best, and running on ice is never fun. Next time it's icy, I'll use the treadmill. But I got it done!

In the afternoon, I had plans to meet up with my friend Stacie, who I usually only see a couple of times a year (she was actually the one I walked the Indy Mini with in 2008). I saw her at the Monroe Half, and we made plans to get together for coffee. The last time I saw her was about a year ago, so we had a ton to catch up on. We met at Tim Hortons, and spent two and a half hours talking about the last year. I didn't have a whole lot to talk about except for Mark's story. She knew all about Mark, because we've been friends since high school, but I explained all that had happened with his illness.

I've been really excited for Stacie, because she's always wanted to write and publish a book--and now it's actually happening! She went on a solo hike in Sedona, Arizona, a few years ago, and it was life-changing for her. She wrote a book about her experience, called On The Edge: A Solo Hiker's Journey (Amazon affiliate link), which is going to be released next month.

Today, my mom had a Thirty-One party at her house. I wasn't *planning* to buy anything, but you know how that goes. I spent way too much money, but when you see all the organizational bags, it makes you feel like you've been missing out all along! She had brunch there, but I had already eaten breakfast, so I just had some tea. Then when I got home, I was starving for lunch; but even after eating lunch, I started having binge thoughts. Logically, I knew I would regret it horribly if I did binge; but I was still really struggling. Finally, I started going through a picture folder on my phone called "Motivation"--it's a folder of a couple dozen photos of me at my goal weight, where I looked good and felt happy.

Thankfully, looking through that folder was exactly what I needed to stay on track! I managed not to binge, and instead, I went to the store to get some groceries for dinner. I need to remember to look through that folder whenever I'm feeling binge-y.

Anyone else have ideas for staying on track when you are having a tough time? Feel free to share! The most motivating for me is to look at pictures of me at my goal. It always makes me feel nostalgic.


  1. I always find that looking through pics of my kids helps. I am not yet at my goal weight, but they are the reason I am getting healthy; it helps to remind myself!

  2. Get you some Yaktrax, girl!

    1. I second that! Yak Traxs are great. This morning it was 10 degrees and snowing but I just layered up and got 4 miles done. Loved being outside!

  3. I look at pictures of evening dresses when I'm lacking motivation. There is nothing like putting on an incredible dress, when being slim and happy. I have to attend a black-tie event once a year, so I know the dress hunt is always right around the corner. Will I wear the dress I wore the last 2 years again? Will I be slim enough to wear my dress from 3 years ago? Will I be slim enough to buy a new one? It's fun and motivating.

  4. I will have to put together a motivational folder of pics to keep me out if the pantry since it worked for you. I have a horrible time when I get the urge and just push all rational thoughts out of my mind.

  5. Thank you! I needed an idea to help me with motivation :-)

  6. thanks for your honesty about maintenance. I am there too, and it hasn't gotten easier- even after 5 years! I struggle with binging and the 20-30 pounds it caused me to gain and lose each year. Thank goodness I too found long distance running or I surely would've gained it all back by now. But it's still exhausting and disheartening and so I appreciate your posts and knowing I am not alone. I wish I had some tricks for you but I'm still working on it myself. I wish there was a switch so I could change my brain into that of a lifelong thin person's!

  7. That's a terrific way to stay honest, motivated, and grounded! It's a great idea that I might just do!! So, thanks!!


  8. Hehe, as cheesy as it sounds, I like to go for a while not reading your blog...that way when I DO need motivation, like I do this week, I can binge-read and catch up! Right now I've got a whole month of new posts to read! Reading your posts always seem to put me back on track. :)

    Although now I'm kicking myself, because I totally missed out on that Indy 500 giveaway! ><


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