Saturday, November 5, 2011

Unfortunate Deja Vu!

This is the type of post that I never want to have to write...

I blew out my back today...during lunch. Yes...during lunch. My father-in-law was in town so we all went to get at our usual Mexican restaurant. At one point during lunch, my 3 year old said he needed to go potty. As I was lifting him out of his high chair...BANG...there goes the back.

This is not the first time this has happened. I dug back into the Phat Disney Geek archive to find my "Stopped dead in my tracks!!!" post from June 2007. From what I remember from back then, this feels almost exactly the same. The bad news is that this is SO not what I need right now for so many reasons. The good news is that if this time follows the script from 2007 I shouldn't be out for too long.

My words from yesterday have been ringing loud in my mind since lunch. How do I choose to react to this? Get down or get stronger? The answer is obvious one. While I may be limited somewhat physically, I am only limited, not incapacitated. This is a golden opportunity to build some mental strength...and faith.

I did get out tonight for an easy walk just to loosen things up some, but also to see what my limitations are. Walking was fine, but right now running just isn't happening. So, right now I'll be doing a lot of walking.

So, now more than ever...KEEP MOVING FORWARD!!!

Friday, November 4, 2011

A Little More T&T And Today's Lunch - 04 NOV 2011

I'll get to today's lunch in a bit, so let's start with a little this and that.

I finally got back on the running horse Wednesday night after nearly 3 weeks. We are coming up on 60 days till the 1/2 so it's crunch time. I've got a ways to go to get my endurance and pace where they need to be. As always, losing weight will help both of those.

Speaking of Weight... 339.5
I'm in the 30's! But, frankly, I am quite shocked that I'm down 1.5 from last week. But, anything in the right direction is, well, in the right direction. My current short term goal is to be in the 20's by Thanksgiving. Lofty? Yes. But doable.

The Last Week...
I said I was shocked about my weight. I was shocked because of how everything has gone since my last T&T post last Friday. Over the weekend, I was in a bad place mentally. In some ways, I felt like I went back in time about 2 months. And, frankly, it about scared me to death. Which, in a way, is/was a good thing. With the bad mental funk comes weakness in other areas. First of which was no running/exercising until Wednesday. Second, was the eating. Have I said that I really don't like Halloween? I really don't like having that much garbage in my house, especially when I'm "weak". So, the whole week, there have been spurts of self control and weakness. So, in the end, to have the week I had, I am actually really encouraged by where I am today. To get (if only) 1 run in and make progress on the weight front shows that no matter what happens to you, it is still up to you to choose how that will effect you.

Along those lines, I have a thought I want to try to put to words. I have had times in my life (especially the last few years) where I've really struggled with stress. When my shoulders and neck start hurting and I'm always tense, it's time to look at what's going on. But, lately I've adopted a new philosophy about stress. Stress is not what you feel. It is not the outside forces pulling you in every direction. It is simply the reaction of your body to how you choose to react to the "stressors" in your life. In other words, how we choose to react to any given situation will directly determine the amount of stress we "feel" later. So, if you live a high stress life, it's up to you to do something about it. The next time someone cuts you off in traffic, the choice is yours, become a road rage statistic or let it go. Oh, one other thing; learning to use the word "NO" does wonders as well.

Ok, enough of the philosophic stuff, on to today's lunch.

Yep, you guessed it, Earth Fare salad/food bar.

Salad Bar: Romaine lettuce; Green Bell Peppers; Yellow Bell Peppers; Red Bell Peppers; Orange Bell Peppers; Cucumbers; Celery; Shredded Cheddar Cheese; Shredded Mozzarella Cheese; Parmesan Cheese; Roasted Red Pepper Dressing

Food Bar: Vegan Tofu Steaks & Cajun Sage Gravy; Almond-Crusted Lemon Pepper Catfish; Fancy Mac n Cheese

Drink: Tazo Organic Iced Green Tea; Water


Thursday, November 3, 2011

Today's (Late) Lunch - 03 NOV 2011

First off...I got back to the running thing last night. 3.42 mi in 1:01:00. Take a look at the DailyMile widget to the left for more.

Today's Lunch....

Yet again to the Earth Fair Salad/Food Bar.

Salad Bar: Romaine lettuce; Green Bell Peppers; Yellow Bell Peppers; Red Bell Peppers; Orange Bell Peppers; Cucumbers; Celery; Shredded Cheddar Cheese; Shredded Mozzarella Cheese; Blue Cheese Dressing

Food Bar: Beef Lasagna; Pasta Alfredo

Drink: Tazo Brambleberry Herbal Infusion, Water

I got a lot more lasagna than I wanted but oh well.


Friday, October 28, 2011

This And That

The day is not yet over and here it is...a long overdue post.

Where to start? Where to start?

Let's start with running... Unfortunately, I have not run since the 13th. I had hoped to get a run in while on vacation (to WDW, of course), but late nights and early mornings made that difficult. But, lots of walking and standing have given my feet a much needed conditioning that I now don't have to deal with while running (at least, I hope).

Speaking of my last run, I was actually able to get up at 4:30 and it felt great to get up and out and get my run in early. However, one day does not make it a habit. For me and how things are right now, I HAVE to get my runs in in the morning.

Eating...As most of my recent posts will show, I have definitely made some strides in making better choices. I still have my moments, and I'm not completely where I need to be but I'm much better than just a month ago. I was especially weak (and annoyingly so) while on vacation.

Weight...The last weight I posted was 348 on Oct 7th. I was down to 342.5 on Oct 15th and expected to be in the 330s last week after returning from vacation. But, as I said, I was weak while on vacation and this week has not been the best. So, I was 341 this morning.

While I could easily get depressed and upset with myself, I can't afford that mindset. I best thing I can do is learn from the past couple weeks and use that to do better going forward.

Speaking of forward...


Today's Lunch - 28 OCT 2011

Ok....Ok...I know....I know....where's that post?! Well, work has been a little (well, actually a lot) crazy and I just haven't made the time yet. But, I will step out on a limb and say that I will have a new post by the end of today.

Now for today's lunch....

Back to the Earth Fare Salad/Food bar.

Salad Bar: Romaine lettuce; Green Bell Peppers; Yellow Bell Peppers; Red Bell Peppers; Orange Bell Peppers; Cucumbers; Celery; Bacon; Shredded Cheddar Cheese; Shredded Mozzarella Cheese; Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing

Food Bar: Vegan BBQ Soy Nugget; Soy Delight Vegan Nugget w/ Buffalo Sauce; Blackened Chicken Salad; Curry Rotisserie Chicken Salad; Pulled Pork Butt; Lemon Pepper Cod

Drink: Tazo Giant Peach Green Tea; Water

It sounds like a lot of food, and there are a lot of different items. But, I got such small portions off the food bar that I actually ended up with less total food (by weight) than I have in the past.


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Today's Lunch - 25 OCT 2011 I was out of town last week on vacation and didn't get to the run post I promised. I hope to have something up tomorrow.

Now for today's lunch....

Back to the Earth Fare Salad/Food bar.

Salad Bar: Romaine lettuce; Green Bell Peppers; Yellow Bell Peppers; Red Bell Peppers; Orange Bell Peppers; Cucumbers; Celery; Shredded Cheddar Cheese; Shredded Mozzarella Cheese; Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
Food Bar: Mediterranean Pasta; Blackened Cod; Asian Noodles

Drink: Water


Friday, October 14, 2011

Today's Lunch - 14 OCT 2011

Yes, I still have a new running post to do....

Today's lunch is from the freezer.

Kashi Pesto Pasta Primavera


Thursday, October 13, 2011

Today's Lunch - 13 OCT 2011

I hope to have a new running post either later today or tomorrow. In the mean time, here is today's lunch.

Earth Fare salad/food bar (yes, again).

Salad Bar: Romaine lettuce; Green Bell Peppers; Yellow Bell Peppers; Red Bell Peppers; Orange Bell Peppers; Cucumbers; Shredded Cheddar Cheese; Shredded Mozzarella Cheese; Roasted Red Pepper Dressing, Goddess Dressing

Food Bar: Tofu Meatloaf; Black Pepper Catfish; Au Gratin; Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Today's Lunch

I thought I would try something new on the blog and post about some of my meals. Especially lunch during the week.

Today's lunch came from the Earth Fare salad/food bar.

Salad Bar: Romaine lettuce; Green Bell Peppers; Yellow Bell Peppers; Red Bell Peppers; Orange Bell Peppers; Cucumbers; Shredded Cheddar Cheese; Shredded Mozzarella Cheese; Roasted Red Pepper Dressing

Food Bar:
Thai Cod; Spicy Blackend Chicken Breast; Au Gratin; Jalapeno Cheddar Cornbread


Monday, October 10, 2011

Run Happy!

Well, I didn't get in the 5 I originally planed, and I didn't run on Saturday. But, I did do 3.28mi on Sunday.

Since Thursday's run was the first one back, my legs were sore on Friday and getting worse during the day. I pretty much decided Friday night that I would not run on Saturday. But, that doesn't mean I did nothing on Saturday.

I spent several hours mowing the yard, doing some cleaning in the garage, pulling some weeds in the landscaping and helping my aunt with a presure washer. I had most of that planned for Saturday, so it made the decision to not run on Saturday a little easier.

As for the run on Sunday, it ended up being a good run. At first, things were a little shaky as my legs (especially the quads) were still sore from Thursday's run and work on Saturday. The first mile was slow as I skipped a couple running segments to let my right calf losen up. After that, the second mile was a different story. I finished the second mile with a solid 1:30 running segment to complete a 16:22 mi. I know I've just started back and I still have a long way to go, but I'm pleased with where I am right now and it felt good to push a little for that last 1:30. I did this run with 30/60 intervals (Galloway).

Speaking of Galloway and some of the comments to the last blog...I started using Jeff Galloway's method over 2 years ago. So, this isn't new to me. I started using Jeff's method in September 2009 and have done two 1/2 marathons using his method. I've had plenty of time to experiment with it and I now know what works for me and how I can tweak it when I need to.

The best confirmation of this came straight from Jeff at the Wine & Dine Expo last weekend. It was late in the day Friday and only about 10 minutes before the expo was closing. I was just finishing up my tour of the expo when I got to the RunDisney both. At first I only saw the "registration discount" for January (which I took advantage of...saved $30) but then noticed someone packing up a suitcase. As I did a double take, I realized that that someone was Jeff Galloway. I only wanted to say hi to him, but he started talking to me about running and asking questions. I told him that I had done a couple of halfs using his method and you would have thought that I had just given him the best Christmas present. But the best part was when I told him that I tweak the plan at times to deliberately skip intervals, especially on long runs, and also skip intervals when I feel like I need to. His response was priceless and I believe is somewhat responsible for my "come back".

Bottom line is that no matter what plan you use, make it your own. Experiment and find what does and doesn't work for you. But, no matter what, do not be affraid to do the things (like skipping intervals) that will make you stronger at the end of a run.  After all, we should all RUN HAPPY!!!


Friday, October 7, 2011


After over a year (Wine & Dine 1/2 2010), I have finally laced up the shoes and hit the pavement. In short, I did 1.98mi in 36:06 with a 16:57mi.

Looking back at other "first runs", this one is quite a bit better. I can't really explain it considering this was the longest layoff and the most I've weighed during a run. To have a sub 17:00 mile first time out, without having to push or work for it is very encouraging. My other first runs had mile times in the high 17s to high 18s.

I did this run using a Galloway 30/60 plan. 30 seconds run/60 seconds walk. I didn't skip any run segments and surprisingly the only issue at all was my hips getting tired at the end.

I can feel some very slight DOMS this morning, but nothing more than I know it's there.

My plan is to do a few miles tomorrow (Saturday). I want to do as EASY 5 (including warm and cool) but will have to see how things go. I have to be careful about over doing it, but that's way I say "easy" 5.

Overall, my plan is for 4 runs per week....Mon, Wed, Thurs & Sat. Looking back on experience, I believe 3 runs per weeks is not enough.

Following my post from yesterday, I was very rudely awakened (@ 3:00am) by a cramp in my right calf. It was easily one of the worst I have ever had and took a good 10 minutes to get it to release.

On the weight front, I was at 348 (down from a high near 360) this morning. Nothing earth shattering, but considering the lack of exercise, I will take it.


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Wishes, Wants and Cramps!?

I wish I could come to you today with a glowing run report, but I cant.

Yesterday, the alarm went off at 4:30 and I was awake. I was surprised at how aware I was after the alarm went off. BUT!!!!... there just wasn't any want to. I didn't want to get out of bed. I didn't want to get ready and get dressed. And I surely didn't want to go run. Frankly, this surprised me. I laid there trying to make any sense of it but fell back asleep and my opportunity was gone.

I've had a chance to think about this some and I have a simple solution...the Dave Ramsey way...

Children do what feels good, adults devise a plan and follow it.

I have to follow my plan no matter how I think I feel. Period! Simple? Yes! Easy? Not so much (for now).

So, the alarm goes off at 4:30 again this morning. All was fine until I moved to turn it off. As soon as I moved my calves cramped. What the....?  When I (have) run, I live and die by my calves. If they are cramping before I get up, there's no way I will be able to run.

So, what to do about it? This wasn't the first time this has happened. There's no doubt this is because of bad eating habits over the last year (and a lack of exercise doesn't help). While the last week has been good, my body has not yet flushed out the junk and gotten back in balance. Time will take care of that, but I will need to kick start things by taking a good multi-vitamin and eating the right things for dinner and before I go to bed.

But, no matter the "feelings" and "issues" I just have to get my mind past these distractions and just go do it!

Till Next Time...KEEP MOVING FORWARD!!!!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Depending on where you look up the word excuse you will find the word justify as a part of the definition. Look up the word justify and you could find the following...

to prove or show to be just, right, or reasonable

Excuse (and excuses) may be convenient to hide behind but what we are really doing is trying to justify a certain decision and/or behavior. More often than not, we justify things to our self more so than to someone else.

Last night and this morning I did just that. I had everything ready and was going to be in bed around 9:30. Then (as I had asked) my Dad called to talk about a couple things. Before I knew it, it was 11:00. And with a 4:30 alarm already set, I changed it to my normal time because I "needed to get more sleep".

Now...too often when we make excuses or try to justify something we tend to have a selective and short term memory.  See, this last weekend while at Disney World I got about 5 hours of sleep each on Friday and Saturday nights.

....and now I was complaining about "only" getting 6-6.5?

The next time you start making excuses or trying to justify something to yourself, stop for a moment and think. You might just find that you're about to say something stupid to yourself.

"Wisdom always chooses to do now, what it will be satisfied with later on." - Joyce Meyer


Monday, October 3, 2011

Silence Over! Now, Game On!

Yes, I know it's been way too long (almost 5 months) since my last post. I have no excuses. But, it has been an emotional roller coaster.

Not only has it been too long since my last post, it has now been over a year since my last run, the 2010 Wine & Dine 1/2 Marathon.

There is a lot that could be said about the last 12 months. And, I will probably get to some of it at some point. But not today.

This past Friday, while at the expo for this year Wine & Dine 1/2, I took advantage of the discounted race registration for the 1/2 in January and registered. So there, I've said it...I'm registered for a 1/2 marathon in a little over 3 months.

Having said that, I'm starting over...completely starting over. I have already said it has been a year since i last ran (or exercised, for that mater) and, as of last Friday, I am square on the nose of 350 pounds.  I have a long way to go to get ready for January, but I have just enough time to get there (if I start today!).

In the past I have asked for a show of hands or some other rah-rah thing to make me feel better. This time, it's just game on. I know there are some people that have given up on me (and I don't blame them, I've given them every reason to do so) and will never come back. That's fine though, because I can't afford to have people around me that will give up on me or drag me down. For those of you that are still here, THANK YOU.

This blog will be my avenue of accountability. If you are reading these words then you are free (if not encouraged) to hold me accountable to what I say I am going to do and what I need to do.  Ideas are welcome.

One last thought...January is only the beginning. It is not (and cannot be) the end, or even a temporary stopping point. It has to be just the beginning.

Till Next Time....KEEP MOVING FORWARD!!!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Diets and Weight Loss? No thank you!

In the many times I've started down the weight loss/running journey I've said that I was not on a diet. I was in the process of changing my life, not just an arbitrary diet "food plan". I still believe that to be very true...and here's why.

Let's say I start a diet plan and am able to stick with it for the year plus that it will take to get to a "goal weight". But, once I'm at the goal weight, then what? Most diets don't allow for a lot of flexibility or variation. That diet was all about losing weight, and I would no longer need to lose weight. So, I will have to go through a process of figuring out what eating is all about again at that weight and activity level.

On the other hand, what if I skipped the idea of diets all together and just focused on eating the proper amount of the right foods. All the while, I'm only adjusting the amount of food needed to support less weight. Once I reach that goal weight, there are absolutely no changes necessary to my "diet" other than to allow for a few more calories because I no longer need to lose weight. Other than that, I will continue to eat the same foods in the same way.

Now let me use the same philosophy to the weight loss itself. I now believe that to truly be successful, I can't afford to focus on weight loss (the number on the scale) as my goal. I need to find proper and measurable goals that will be around long after I reach a goal weight. Again, if my focus is weight loss and I have reached my goal weight, then I no longer have that focus and change is in order to find a new focus.

On the other hand, what if I have a set of continual running goals that were focused on improvement. (Now, let me stop for a second and be clear that I'm not necessarily talking about hard race goals, those will be important in the journey but they are not the journey itself, or the destination). Let's say I had a weekly or monthly goals of increasing mileage, or improving average pace, or improving my fastest mile time. Each would have its own milestone of improvement. Then, once I reach the goal weight, my goals carry on and have a life of their own. Yes they will be a little different over time but the overall goal is continual improvement.

I firmly believe, that when these two ideas (life change instead of diet & continual improvement goals) are married and acted on, I will achieve my "goal weight" (what every that actually is) and more.

But, in the end the one critical thing is that I never give up or quit (if only for a season) but to KEEP MOVING FORWARD!!!!!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Rut Mentality

Have you ever been stuck in a rut for so long that the rut itself became the normal?
Did you ever get out of it?
Did you fall back into it?
Multiple times?
Have you now permanently escaped the rut?
What did you do different than the times before?

These questions reveal a great deal into what my life has been like the last 4+ years. In and out of the same rut several times, but wanting to finally escape the rut to never return.

For those that have been in and out of the same ruts and have finally conquered them, what advice would you give to someone wanting to do the same?

These are not rhetorical questions. So please don't hesitate to respond.

Till Next Time...Take Care!!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Want vs. Have?!

To those that routinely check this blog for updates, I apologize. I wish I could give a magic answer or explanation of things lately, but I can't. And if I could, I wouldn't need to explain anything to begin with.

However, I have not given up or thrown in the towel. I still stand by the new blog name of Freedom Running. The name does not exist to represent what I have, but what I want and what I'm looking for. Eventually, that will change, but for now, it is about what I want.

Speaking of what I want… One thing that has been on my mind lately is just that….what do I REALLY want? I mean, that deep down, close my eyes and SEE in my minds eye want. So many of us have talked about what we want to do or plan to do, even to the point of speaking as if it has already happened long before the chance to be so, only to never see it happen. But when it come to what I really want, I think there are two things in this area where I struggle.

First, I don't have a good picture of what I really want. When it comes to weight, health and running, close your eyes and picture what the perfect you (the goal you, the best you that you can imagine) looks like. And I don't mean a "Hollywood/Supermodel" you, I mean the you where you are exactly where you need to be. Lean. Fit. In shape. With a health body fat %, etc. For me, doing what I just suggested is nearly impossible. It is somewhat because I don't have a tangible image to go by (I've never been anywhere near a healthy weight, etc), it is purely my imagination. But I believe what really makes it so hard is the second half of the puzzle.

Second, I don't allow myself the freedom (and possibly the permission) to believe that I could ever become that perfect me. The lies take over, and work to squash any hope of reaching that goal.
"I've always been fat, always will be."
"I'm not worth fighting for."
"Who cares if I'm fat or fit?"
"What is the point of trying if you know you will never win?
The list can go on forever, but in the end they are lies. When I can see them for the lies they are, only then can I begin to have the freedom to see the perfect, goal me. Once that happens, then everyday becomes an opportunity to take one step towards that goal.

Again, I write the words, not as the steps taken to what I have, but as a part of the path to what I want. They may be worth nothing, or they may open the right door at the right time. Do you see yourself in these words?

Till Next Time...Take Care!!!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Welcome to Freedom Running!

If you look up the word freedom in the dictionary you might find the following definitions...

- the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action
- liberty in acting and choosing
- unrestricted use or enjoyment
- liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another : independence
- enjoyment of personal liberty, of not being a slave nor a prisoner
- the quality or state of being exempt or released usually from something onerous
- immunity to or release from obligations, undesirable states of being etc.
- the state of not being subject to determining forces
- ease, facility
- ability to move with ease
- the quality of being frank, open, or outspoken
- boldness of conception or execution
- (with 'from') an absence of

Take a moment and think about the above definitions of freedom. Do they describe your life, your running? Are there specific areas of your life where you are starving for freedom?

Join me on a new (renewed) journey to find freedom. Freedom to do anything and everything the heart dreams.