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Archive for the ‘Goals’ Category

I broke my lent promise this morning. When my alarm went off at 5:40, I shut it off. I didn’t even snooze, I just said, absolutely not. I’ve had over a week straight now of 5:40am mornings. I actually have been loving my morning workouts and really do like getting them in before work.

However, yesterday, I hit training hard. I got up at 5:40 and took an intense flywheel class. When lunch time rolled around at work, I took another. That’s almost 2 hours of intense biking. I’m talking all out each class, hills and sprints for 600+ calorie burning classes, and somehow I found myself having the energy to go harder in the second class. In reality, that’s just a blip of what I’ll be doing on race day – but I think the combination of my 6 days straight last week, (Saturday off), then another couple of days of hard training in combination with getting my period and my body just wanted sleep this morning. I am not even sore per say (I’m tight for sure) but I just wanted more than 6 -7 hours of sleep (especially because I’m still adjusting to the Husband coming into bed, tossing/turning/and talking). And so I slept another glorious hour and woke up at 6:40 feeling much, much better.

My boss has said a few times that I should feel free to adjust my work hours since I’m putting an average of 5-10 night hours in total each week with this project. So today I am finally taking her up on that offer and I’m leaving work to catch a 4pm train. That gives me enough time to head straight to the gym, get my hour run in, then pick Bentley up, heat up my leftovers for dinner and start my night calls.

I’m having severe hatred towards the scale right now. I feel great. I’m eating better (not fantastic, but better for sure and I’m tracking calories and portions), and I’m working out 6 days a week. My clothes are fitting better, my body feels more energized and my stomach feels like it’s slowly making its way back to the inside of my pants (versus hanging over… 😉 ) So whyyyyy isn’t the scale budging? I know the whole losing inches, gaining muscle, but seriously? Can’t it budge a few pounds and make me feel better?

This weather is really getting to me. I normally love snow and winter, but I’m over it by February. It’s March 25th and we are getting hit with 3-6 inches of snow tonight. This is the first time I ever remember being truly depressed about the weather. The temps are still frigid, and even down to the low teens at night. It just feels windy and dreary. I need warmth and sun. I want to feel motivated to go for a walk outside or happily walk to my car at 5:40am instead of constantly shivering, and feeling unmotivated to go outside. If it wouldn’t set off my old addiction (still going strong!) I’d probably go fake tanning just to feel warmth and sun. Bring on Spring, please!

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Sometimes all I need to stay motivated is to see my progress. Not just “feel” it, but see data in some form or another that proves I’m making progress. I know I can see it on the scale, a few pounds lost in the last couple of weeks. I know I can see it among my training plan – longer, harder workouts. But something about seeing the data from Flywheel, to literally see that I have consistently pushed harder each class, makes me so very happy.

Flywheel_Progress
I don’t care as much about MAX TORQ (resistance) in that it really depends on the instructor you get (some prefer hills, some prefer sprints). I also think the average speed is pulled from who knows where because, while it’s one hell of a high intensity class, unless you’re faster than Lance Armstrong, you’re not going an average of 30mph. However to see my total power (an equation of RPM and TORQ) jump higher and higher each week – confirms my feeling that I’m working hard, getting stronger and faster.

Sometimes that’s all I need to keep pushing forward. It’s what  just motivated me to sign up for a duathlon in a month. A short course, but one I love, (actually, I first referenced it here), and I would love to have a mini-goal on the way to this bigger 70.3 goal. A good way to ease myself back into the tri scene, get comfortable on my bike, and go into an event with confidence.

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2,000 yards.

A-NN (A-Z, AA-NN)
2,000 yards.
80 lengths.
40 laps.
1.2 miles.

I did it. I swam 1.2 miles last night. 80 friggan lengths of that pool. It wasn’t on my training plan (per say) but I needed the confidence boost. That I could get it done under the hour and 10 minutes cut-off and wouldn’t drown/cramp/give-up.

I got into the pool at about 7:07pm. For whatever reason, there were so many people swimming last night so I ended up sharing a lane with a very large, splashing, “running” and bouncing up and down the lane guy. At first I was annoyed – trying to stay on my side of the lane, slightly bumping each other, drinking his splashes – but then I realized, it was actually great for simulating race day.

I went in with the idea of following my training plan. 40 minutes of swimming, including a slow warm-up and cool-down. But for some reason, I decided to just swim. Zone out and swim a full 1.2 miles. Prove to myself that I CAN and I WILL do this. I wasn’t trying to beat a time, especially with tired legs from a recent run, only to just swim a full 1.2 miles without any rest breaks.

And so after my first 26 laps, A-Z, I began on my next 14. As I started with AA I couldn’t help but use the letter to define each lap. AA –you’re absolutely amazing! BB- Bust your butt! CC- Come on Cait! And so on. It sort of made me laugh at myself and all the sudden I realized, hey this feels good. I don’t feel tired, I ‘m not cramping up, I just feel, relaxed.

At 7:55 I was finished. 1.2 miles done!

Sure it was a pretty slow swim – taking me about 48 minutes overall, at least it was well under the cutoff – and I have just over 3 months before race day and therefore ample time to put some speed into my swim (just enough without tiring out my legs).

This was by far, the furthest I have swam in my entire life. I slowly (holy sea legs) got out of that pool with a huge smile on my face.

I can, and I will, do this half-ironman. 🙂

Believe

weheartit.com 

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Before I felt better about what was happening at work, I had this thought – what would happen if I got fired?

I realized my world would be rocked, in a very daunting, right down to my core type of way. Not because of the bills that would have to be paid. Not because I would have to find another job. But because it would be my biggest failure. My only failure actually, and one that would strip me of who I thought I was.

And that’s scary.

I hate to admit it, but my career – my job – my experience – this firm – has been the most stable part of who I am. The thing that would appear as number one on the list if someone asked what I was good at. Sure I’m a good wife, puppy mom, friend, sister, athlete – but what I would put at top? I’m a good worker. I’m a hard worker. I’m a smart worker. (Smart in the efficient sense, but I guess I’m not dumb either, ha.) I’ve become a leader in my career, at a prestigious firm, and it feels so good.

And so when I was reading this article the other day, nodding along in agreement, I thought, what are the little things keeping me happy? The things that if god forbid I did lose my job, or when I’m out on maternity leave one day, will save me from feeling like my identity is falling apart. Do I focus on those little things enough, or do they get pushed aside often for the bigger things?

The big things are paying your bills and renting your first apartment. They are working towards that promotion and finding that person to marry. While these should make you happy and productive, they aren’t the things that are important.

The little things are the ones you need to pay attention to. The little things are what’s going to save you when your career ends or your marriage comes crashing down.

The little things are sunrises and sunsets, a great beer and watching a stranger help the homeless.

The little things are the cobblestone streets on your trip to Italy or the fresh fish at the market. It’s the walks through Central Park and the warm croissants at that French bakery you love so much. It’s the warm weather and the fall breezes.

We forget to pay attention to the little things and shift our focus to attaining the big things. We forget to look up at the buildings or at the people we love because we’re too focused on getting to those bigger things we find so important.

…Now is the time to read that article if you haven’t yet…

I do think focusing and accomplishing the big things are important. I guess I’m just agreeing that these little daily things are just as important to finding and keeping happiness along the path to the big things. Focusing on those little things instead of always the end goal, for me, is the key to keeping my happiness steady.

I know a lot of people can’t relate to what I’m saying. Their job and career doesn’t define them. The truth is, I never thought it would for me. But it has and I’m proud of the worker I have become and I’m proud to be part of this firm. So thinking about all that lately has freaked me out a bit.

While I might be good at balancing my career and life – I of course spend time with the husband, family, friends, Bentley, training, etc. – I still find that my career is where I feel most successful.

This past week has made me take a step back. It has made me focus on what little things I find daily happiness in and how I can start savoring them a little more. It’s made me think about where and how else I might feel successful, and what would help balance out my identity aside from my career.

So far, I like what I’m finding.

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I’ve said it before, but I have a tendency to write a lot more when I’m in a negative or confused place. I wanted to be sure to document some things from the past two weeks because really, life has been good!

The Husband and I watched episodes 1-7 of True Detective on Sunday. Yes 7 (1 hour) episodes straight. To say we can’t wait for the finale this weekend is an understatement. That show is strange and so damn addicting. Watch it.

We took Bentley on an hour hike together on Sunday, the Husband’s idea, and it was so nice to spend time just the three of us outside, even though it was cold and icy. Bentley was so well behaved…that is until he ran up and grabbed something off the ground. We went to pull it out of his mouth and out came what looked like a dirty baby wipe. We both said to each other, no that must be mud on that wipe. Mind you, we were hiking in a really nice, wealthy, reservation area. A few hundred yards later we spotted a pair of torn boxers, covered in shit, with a bunch of used baby wipes next to them. We spent the rest of the walk hands out, gagging, just wanting to get home and sanitize ourselves.

The weekend before this last one, I bought a new car! Well, I traded my 12-year-old Honda in for a 2014 Jeep Patriot lease. I know a lot of people didn’t understand, but it was oddly emotional saying goodbye to that car. It was MY first ever car, and it is tied to so many memories. However, driving around in a nice new car, that I’m not worried will break down or get stuck in a snow bank, is pretty sweet. 🙂

This actual past weekend we had friends from college come out, with their 7 month old baby. I swear I have never seen such a happy, easy-going baby. It definitely didn’t help my baby fever and I actually think it sparked it a bit more in the Husband. We still plan to wait until after my half-ironman (at earliest).

I was so happy to see Bentley’s reaction to having a baby in the house. He was curious, sweet (kept wanting to lick his feet) and oddly calm –at one point I was holding the baby, sitting in the dog bed and Bentley came over, sat down and put his head on my leg. It was one of those moments looking at the baby sitting on my left leg, and the puppy resting on my right leg that I felt, this is pure happiness, and the Husband and I will have this one day. Granted, the baby was in our house for only a few hours, so we still plan to have the behaviorist come and help us prepare him and all that jazz, but I’m still relieved.

Speaking of Bentley, he is back in daycare/going on long walks after being neutered. Life feels far less hectic now that Bentley is more tired, and we actually have more time to have lives.

Our wedding schedule this year keeps getting crazier. We now have the following weddings: July 26th, (August 30th got cancelled (well they decided to make it a family only wedding), yay!), September 20th, October TBD [friends moving home from England having their American reception], November 1st, and December 31st. Plus showers and bachelorettes for all. No more please.

I’m trying really hard to pull myself out of this half-ironman funk. Let’s see if I were to be completely honest… I’m doubting myself. Flat-out doubting myself. So much so that I thought, hmm I could just get pregnant now and not do it. But I don’t want that. I also know, deep down, if I don’t do this now – it will be one of, if not my biggest, regret to date. I think that the best athletes are consistent. For the next few months all I want to do is consistently get these workouts in, no matter the pace. Just get them in. It’s true, I honest to God just want to finish – that’s my only goal!

I went to bed at 9:45pm last night – that’s the earliest in a long time. I was up at 5:40am thinking I was still tired but after my train ride and completing my 45 minute run class – I felt, and still feel, fantastic. The power of sleep…and coffee!

I am so, so, so over the cold weather. I like winter and I love snow, but it’s March. I need sunny mid 50’s now not 20’s with wind chills down to single digits. This weather makes me just want to get home, bundle under covers, lay on the couch, eat hearty meals and watch TV. After doing that since December, it’s time for a change. I never thought weather would affect me this much, but it’s really draining me.

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Tick tock

“You don’t play triathlon. You play soccer; it’s fun. You play baseball. Triathlon is work that can leave you crumpled in a heap, puking by the roadside. It’s the physical brutality of climbing Mount Everest without the great view from the top of the world. What kind of person keeps coming back for more of that?”

With not all that much time left, I need to start getting serious about my training.

I’d love to say I’ve been consistent and training hard for the past weeks/months… I will be honest and say I haven’t been, not even close. Finally though, I’m starting to feel the need to stay consistent. To plan it out better. To stop making excuses. And my head is slowly starting to believe that just maybe, my body can do this.

This week on the schedule was:

Monday: 30 min swim, 60 min bike
Tuesday: Off
Wednesday: Strength
Thursday: 90 minute run
Friday: 30 min swim, 60 min bike
Saturday: 45 minute run
Sunday: 1hr 45 minute bike, 15 min run

What has actually happened / will hopefully happen:

Monday: 25 minute swim, 60 min bike (swim cut short from goggles leaking)
Tuesday: Strength
Wednesday: Off
Thursday: Off
Friday: 60 min bike
Saturday: Hopefully 90 minute run
Sunday: Hopefully 1hr 45 minute bike, 15 min run (and maybe even a short swim before)

And here’s how my schedule is going to change. I’m going to take Saturdays off from now on. Having Tuesday as an off day, doesn’t feel like an off day because of my night-time work calls. Instead, I know I need a full weekend day off to keep myself motivated during the week. I signed back up for my running class at my gym on Tuesday mornings. That’s an hour run every Tuesday, no excuses and I love that class! I think I forgot that finding alternatives to get myself motivated is acceptable.

I also know, I need to get my workout done in the morning. Getting up at 5:40am really isn’t that bad, and to get an hour of biking in before work, is ideal. Starting my day off today with spin put me in a much better mood and now I get to look forward to spending the evening with my best girlfriend without feeling guilty. (And I give myself extra credit because my recently neutered spaz puppy tried to jump ON the bed at 5:40am – not allowed – and when I went to grab his collar, he jumped – into my nose – causing my first ever bloody nose. And I still got myself to spinning – no excuses!)

I also know, especially after talking with Becelisa, if I miss a few swims, it’s not the end of the world. But I need to get my bike and runs in – it’s where I’ll make up the most time by far.

Becoming more consistent, feeling more in control of my schedule, and making my training a priority is all it takes. Let’s hope this motivation sticks.

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The start of February was exactly what I needed.

Friday night I headed to the gym after work. Unfortunately I didn’t make the spin class but I was able to motivate myself to get 1 hour on the bike with my own music.

Just 39 more miles after this amount...

Just 39 more miles after this amount…

The Husband was doing an OT shift, so I headed home with my Panera dinner, hung with Bentley and worked on a little “leave it” training and then we were both asleep by 11pm.

Saturday I was up before 7am (thanks Bentley) and we hung out a bit and got some cuddling/training time in. At 9:30 I took him to daycare and headed into the city to meet up with my friend for our birthday celebration day. (A yearly tradition to get together in between our birthdays.) We took a Flywheel spin class – which aside from the chaos the ensues before and after the class – the class itself was amazing and I seriously felt the burn. The instructor and the music was my favorite to date in a spin class.

We left class and headed to get big green salads for lunch and catch-up. Then we walked over to our go-to spa to get MASSAGES. We gave ourselves enough time to take showers there, put on comfy robes and sit for a few before our massage time.

So when I booked the appointment there was only an opening with 1 female and 1 male masseuse. I gave my friend the female and for the first time had a male. I’m not going to lie, I was actually a little nervous but all in all it wasn’t that weird. I can’t say I was 100% as comfortable as I would have been with a female, since he was (thankfully so) focusing a lot on my hips, glutes and IT Bands and it was sorta strange to have a 6’7 swedish man rubbing me but damn his hands hurt but in a hurt so good way, but all in all it was great. I left feeling looser and less off kilter in my hips than I have in months.

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I headed home to pick up Bentley, and we, including the Husband, snuggled in bed a little before we crated him and the Husband and I went off to get sushi and fro yo. The original plan was to see a movie but one look at the chaos of the movie theater and parking situation and we nixed that.

At this point I started to really feel the fact that I hadn’t had any coffee all day (I bought a Dunkin coffee but didn’t have time before spin to drink it. Plus it tasted so burnt). I was physically and mentally beyond exhausted. We headed back home sometime around 9 and not long after I painted my nails and apparently fell asleep on the husband’s stomach. I remember around 11pm he woke me up because he had been holding it and couldn’t anymore, and HAD TO pee. I remember going to get up…and my hand was stuck to his shirt.

Clearly I didn't fix them...

Clearly I didn’t fix them…

Sunday I cleaned the house. I mean I cleaned. I don’t know what got into me, actually I think it’s similar to Jill’s recent post in that I am trying to organize and control the chaos that was my life. I scrubbed floors, the shower, the toilet, I swiffered, I took out loads of garbage, I did 2 loads of laundry, I picked out work outfits for this week, unloaded and re-loaded the dishwasher, and all around tidied up. I spent about 6 hours in total. But it felt so, so good. What didn’t feel good was skipping my long run. I think this reiterates that Becelisa is right about figuring out how to have a weekend day off.

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Oddly though I didn’t sleep well last night. I kept having a dream about a “pyr” dog and couldn’t figure out what type of dog that was. It kept me anxiously awake and I tossed and turned. I wonder if the 4 cups of coffee yesterday did that…

Anyway, I’m feeling organized and positive today. I’m ready to make February an amazing month. 🙂

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