Category Archives: Exercise

The Crazy Mind of a 1st time 5K Runner

One of the things on my old Bucket List was to run half a marathon so I could get a t-shirt that said ‘I did a half-marathon because I’m only half-crazy’ – cute and funny, heh? But I knew I needed to start with a 5K and work my way up to Marathon status. I attempted to use that Couch to 5K app on my phone that says when to run, walk and timing – so I could gradually reach my goal. A couple of months into it my knee was injured and that ended the desire for over a year. But just this week one of my BFF’s says she needs someone to do the 5K Run Against Cancer on Saturday morning with her. I didn’t want her to have to do it alone and I knew I needed to just try it instead of talking about it. I paid my entry fee the night before and joined her. I figured if I haven’t done a 5K for myself, maybe I could do it for all our loved ones and friends who have had their lives affected by cancer- For all those who have died from it, and those who have survived it.

Now I have to be honest here. I didn’t pay the fees until the night before because I was still on the fence about doing it. And after a sleepless night, I was considering backing out that morning. But I forced my mind off and just showed up. First hurdle accomplished. The people that were running the Marathon took off at 7:30am to a glorious sunrise. We started off at 8 a.m. The sun was shining bright and the wind was blowing cool (temps ranging in the 60’s.) The plan was to use Annette’s phone app to tell us to jog 2 minutes, then walk a minute, jog 2, walk one – etc. and that’s how we started off leaving downtown Victoria.

And now I will allow you to enter my mind and the rest of this post will be like hearing my thoughts out loud. So, if you know how my voice sounds, please envision me speaking the rest.

Wow. This is a LOT of people taking off at once. I hope I don’t get stepped on. I hope I don’t step on someone else! Oh, good, this part is down hill. Annette’s pace is a little much for me. I’m breathing too hard already. Geez, we’ve only jogged 2 blocks and my lungs are burning! It’s so crowded, they need a fast lane and a slow lane, it would help keep people like me from tripping over their feet while trying to wind around these groups.

Shewwwhhh! Glad we’re walking fast now. I don’t know how I can keep this up for a whole 5K. What in the world have I gotten myself into? It sure is a pretty day though! Thank God it’s not hot! I’d definitely pass out in the heat of summer. Heck, I may still pass out! If she keeps jogging this fast she is going to lose me. My lungs are on fire! I’m losing my ability to breathe. Body feels like lead. Must slow down.

Oh no way am I running up this hill! Are you crazy? Bye Annette! I’m walking up the hills. No way can I run up. Just walk fast. Stretch those short legs out! Faster! Ok, once at the top start jogging again. I can do this. Yes, I’m doing this! Oh *#@! My Knee!!!! The shooting fire of pain – Auggghhhh! Don’t fall down, don’t fall down Deana! Just hobble, limp but keep walking. A few more blocks and I will be by the parking garage, I could sneak in there, climb into my Explorer and just lay down and wait for Annette to finish. Hmmm….

No, you’re doing this if you have to limp the whole way!!! Crap, they have a whole bunch of people standing on the sidelines cheering and yelling. And I have to limp past – just don’t make eye contact and keep moving. Be determined.  Did that photographer just take a picture of me limping?!!! Really??? I better not see that in the newspaper. It would be just my luck. Not even half way through and I look like I’m in agony. Oh well, now I really have to finish!!! Great. See ya later parking garage.

Ok, this walking thing is getting easier now, maybe my knee is more warmed up? Oh boy, we’re going to have to cross a major street and the police have the cars stopped and lined up waiting on us. I can’t be the one walking and holding everybody up. Start jogging slow, yeah that’s it – not too hard or fast. I hope my knee doesn’t give out in the middle of this highway! Nope, I got this! Jog, jog, jog. Walk fast. jog. walk fast. jog. Another freakin’ hill? Are you kidding me?!!! We live in the flattest place in Texas and they have our 5K route cover the only hills in town! Figures. Just walk the hills Deana. Then jog. Oh, this is much better, jogging down the hill. Oh, I’m getting really thirsty. But I have to pee. Will have to hold out a little longer for water or I may wet myself.

Oh great, another hill. And people running past me? I really need to get in better shape. That’s just sad. Jog more. Jog, jog, oh nope, gonna have to walk or I am going to trip over some of the pot holes. Not only did they give us lots of hills to maneuver but also bumpy streets with gravel and potholes and uneven roads. I hope I don’t twist my ankle. Just concentrate on not twisting ankle, forget about breathing. I lost breath on that other block anyway. Maybe I can pick it up on the way back!

What??? Not even half way yet? And I am exhausted. How in the world did I ever think I could do a half Marathon? I’m crazy. Well, I guess that ain’t happening, I can take that off my Bucket List. I’ll be lucky to finish this 5K!!! Oh, Water! Yay me, wet and cold. Mmmm. Phooey, I still have to pee. No more water for me. Bye bye water girl. Jog. just jog slow and easy and watch out that you don’t twist your ankle. Downhill now, woo hoo! I can do this. keep goooinggg. Walk fast now. Jog down again. Walk fast now. Oh, this is an easy hill to jog down, it’s steeper than I realized when I was going up it. Uh oh. Too steep, too fast! Slow down or you are going to eat pavement at the bottom!!!! Gravel, oh no. It literally hurts my thighs to try to slow them. And now, Oh yeah, that’s right, up another freakin’ hill. Just stretch those legs and walk. I sure do like all these historical homes down here, so pretty. Oh, I’ve been inside that one! Oops, watch out or you’re going to trip over your own feet. It sure would help if I could lift my legs higher, but really, they feel like jello now, all the way down to my ankles. Is that jello on my ankles? No. Ok. There’s the streetlight and another traffic stopper. Must run so horns don’t honk at you. Oh, that hurts my knee, oh my gosh – I hope I don’t wipe out and face plant in the middle of this street in front of all these people!!!!

Ok, made it. Walk fast for a block then jog, and hey, is that the end corner coming up? Yes! Almost there! Bladder feels like will explode. Must not pee myself in front of everyone! I will jog the last two blocks no matter what! I’m actually going to finish this thing!!! Uh oh, Mucho people standing around cheering, I hope I don’t wipe out in front of them right before the finish line! I’m pretty sure that would make the local news! Stop thinking and just run Deana!!! Oh, there’s Annette on the side waving – wave low back, no energy left. What’s that, somebody running up behind me? Oh, I don’t think so! You ain’t passing me up Chica, I’m hitting that finish line before you!

Yes! I finished. I want to raise my hands and yell ‘Woo Hoo’ but I can’t raise my arms. I may pass out. Ouch my legs hurt! Keep walking or you will fall. Lungs burning. Water, where’s the water? Where’s Annette? “

After that, it’s kind of blurry, but we walked, I grabbed some water and fruit and we looked to see where our times landed in our age groups. In the middle if you’re curious, we were both relieved we weren’t last.

I have to say it feels really good to be  able to say I did run my first 5K at 47 years of age. I don’t think I’m going to make that half Marathon, but maybe I can do another 5K and try to beat my own time. For now, I will have to concentrate on the present. Which means hobbling around moaning and groaning with any movement because my whole body is sore!

And why run against cancer? The info packet they gave us says:

Exercise is an important step in reducing the various cancer types & being physically active can play a key role in preventing cancers caused by lifestyle factors (not genetics.) And more. We all know exercise is good for people, no need for a lecture.

But I did want to share my adventure, thinking everyone might get a laugh out of my crazy mind’s first 5K. (P.S. I did make it home before peeing myself.)

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SPORTS BRA WARNING: WOMEN BEWARE!

I have to share this embarrassing moment with other women simply to warn them of a possible issue that may occur while trying on sports bras.  I really am shocked that this hasn’t happened to anyone else yet, but I definitely want to get the word out so that no woman is harmed by these treacherous ‘sports’ bras.

Here’s my story:  Every new year I start a new exercise routine for inspiration and variety.  This year I decided to challenge myself by attempting this Couch to 5k program that so many of my Facebook friends have been posting about.  After a couple of weeks I realized I was going to need some new ‘support‘ and went to our local sports store (Academy.)  I discovered some new bras that were not only cute but promised to “Banish the Uni-boob!”  The tag touted it’s schtick “The Great Divide – Shaping, Support & No Uni-Boob.”  Wow.  I was not aware that my old sports bras were giving me a ‘uniboob,’ but upon reflection, maybe they were!  “What a wonderful new bra,” I thought to myself.  I gathered two of them with hangers that declared them a size Medium (my size, at least in my old sports bras) and decided not to try them on since I had other shopping to do and a limited amount of time.

Fast forward to the next day, Monday morning.  The kids are gone to school, husband to work and I’m flitting around the house like a, well – a dragonfly, because while I tinker on the computer, I also stop to do other things like:  “Oh, yeah, I wanted to finish cleaning the bathtubs.  Oops, laundry needs to get started.  Oh, I need to go through those papers cluttering the dining room table.  Uh, there’s some dishes that need to be put into the dishwasher.  Are those leaves on the floor?  Let me just sweep those up.”  Are you getting the picture?  I am an ADHD homemaker.  Where was I?  Oh yeah, the bra fiasco.

My daughter and her two fellow cosmetology students/friends generally swing by our house for a quick bite to eat & bathroom use before continuing on to their Cosmo class located on the other side of town.  When  they arrive this morning I’m scampering about the house when I realize I never did try on those new bras.  I needed to try them on before cutting the tags off and washing them with the laundry so I excused myself from the gals in the kitchen and shut myself in the master bedroom to get started.

“Hmmm.  I think I’ll try on this cute pink one first.”  I took the top half of my outfit off (Ok, I took off my pajama top,) released the sports bra from it’s hanger and began pulling it over my head.  “Hmm, this is a tighter squeeze than it should be.  I think they might have mislabled this one.  It seems extra small.”  I get the bra over my head and barely get one arm through it, struggling in a vain attempt to pull the other arm through and while trying to pull it down over my breasts I wonder, “Maybe it’s the new fabric, but it’s still not stretching enough.”  When I begin turning red in the face and the bra still won’t move, I give up.  “This must be an extra small!”  Geez.  Alright then, I will just take it off.

I try to pull my arm out and get it back over my head to no avail.  I am stuck.  Both literally and figuratively.  After many deep breaths, groans and near muscle pulls, I am now breathing heavy, starting to sweat and very seriously stuck half in/out of a sports bra!  It ain’t going down over my boobs and it ain’t going up over my head and I can’t move my arms.  UH OH!!!!!!!

I hear the girls talking in the kitchen and say aloud, “Thank God!  Tara is still here!”

I crack open my bedroom door and raise my voice (as much as I can considering I am out of breath from the struggles with that damn bra) “Uhhhh – Tara!  Tara, can you come help me for a minute?”

I hear her approaching and when she walks around the hallway corner she sees me peeking my head out from behind the door.  She looks at me curiously while saying, “What is it Mama?”

Yes, indeed.  What is it.  “Uhm,” I say, “This is kind of embarrassing, but uh, well – I was trying on one of my new sports bras and I think it was mislabeled because now I am stuck and I can’t pull it off!”

She starts giggling and enters the bedroom.  I can’t imagine how I must look.  A forty-four year old Mama, one arm stuck in the air, one arm stuck down through the bra, boobs popping out underneath from the pressure of being squeezed diabolically by the tightness of the fabric and hunched over – because I couldn’t even stand up straight at this point!

I bend over more at the waist, half waving my one free arm that is stuck upwards and beg, “Just pull it off of me!”

She’s laughing as she yanks it off and I sigh with the freedom of release.  She looks closer at the bra and says, “Yeah, this is a small.  Have you tried the other bra yet?”  I’m frustrated and complaining as I show her the hanger, “Look it says Medium!  Darn!  I guess I better try the other one on too- while you are here, just in case I get stuck in it!”  By this time we are both laughing about my predicament.

The other bra is much easier to get over my head and one arm into, but – uh, nope.  I can’t get both arms into it either!  I bend over at the waist (again) grappling to pull it off and I hear Tara say in disbelief through her laughter, “Don’t tell me you’re stuck in that one too!

Yes, I’m stuck,” I say with disgust.  She’s laughing so hard now that I imagine tears are rolling down her face.  “Just pull it off of me,” the frustration is evident in my voice.  I know we are both girls and related, but it really is embarrassing to be witnessed half in/half out stuck in a sports bra, no matter who is viewing the chaos.

After I get dressed into regular clothes and come walking back into the kitchen where the girls are now all congregated, a light bulb goes off in my mind and I say to them, “Oh my goodness!  Can you imagine if I would have tried them on at Academy?  I would’ve been in a uni-sex dressing room stall mumbling, “Help me, I’m stuck.  Can somebody help me?  Ahh!!!!”

We are all laughing while we picture that scenario, but really – how could I have faced a store clerk stuck in that position? Can you imagine?  That’s why I am writing this and sharing my embarrassing moment – because whether you are family, friend or enemy – I would never wish that on any woman!!!!

P.S. And by the way Academy store clerks – You are very welcome for me not attempting to try on those sports bras in your store!!!!!!!

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Interruptions

Today I didn’t have an overly eager list of things to get done.  I just wanted to start getting my Thanksgiving grocery list together & planned, do some writing and get my exercise workout in.  I had an unusual amount of interruptions to this process though and saw my free time dwindling away.  Instead of just saying “Screw it, forget writing and working out,” I decided to try a different approach and set it in my mind that I was going to write & exercise no matter what.  I didn’t let the little things knock me off balance.  I persevered and did indeed write a short story for my husband, went to the gym and did my work out and now am in fact writing a short blog as well.  Yeah me!  Go Deana!  Ha ha.

And I still have some day left to boot!  I’m proud of this accomplishment.  It’s just one day, but that’s a start in the right direction.  I just have to come to terms with the fact that life is indeed full of little interruptions to our set schedules no matter how well I try to plan.  Instead of just giving up on the plan, I’m just going to go with the flow and make myself still do things for myself rather than living my life all for others.  After all, I can’t be much good for others if I’m not taking care of myself, right?  Exercise  is the physical part that I need and Writing is the mental part so I am just going to make myself do them.  Let’s see where this road takes me.

That’s the beauty in my life today.  If I’m on the wrong road, I just need to make my own detour to get back on track.  It’s not rocket science so I should be able to do it!

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Work Out

Yesterday I went to the gym to get my ‘workout prescription’ – basically a professional showed me how to work the machines and which ones I should use.  We decided it would be great if I could make it three times a week to do the machines and get 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise.  I’m hoping to take in a few of their exercise classes too, such as a yoga, pilates, water boot camp and or tai chi.  They offer a great selection but for me it’s just like shopping when you are hungry.  You get big ideas and buy all this food to cook but once you get home you lose steam and just throw something into the microwave.  I do that looking at their exercise class schedules.  I think ‘Oh, I’d like to try that.  And that would be great for me.  And oh, that one sounds fun!”  Then reality hits and in between doing household chores and running errands I end up not doing any classes.

I have good intentions and need this time to get on track with exercising though.  I’m getting old and the middle age spread is beginning on my mid-section and I don’t like muffin top when I dress in clothes.  I cannot stand how it feels!  And I can tell my posture is getting worse so I need to strengthen my back muscles to help with that.  And don’t even get me started on what is happening to my boobs.  Damn gravity.

Thankfully, I wasn’t too sore today which is a good sign.  Normally, when I first start a new workout regime I get too gung ho and overdo it the first day so much that it takes me a week to recuperate and then I have to start all over again.  Which is a big reason why I’m not a regular at the gym!  I am starting smaller and with less over eagerness so I’m thinking maybe that will prove to be an advantage this time around.  Of course, with Thanksgiving coming up I will not be without challenges!

The beauty of my work out was that I felt good about it and knowing that I was doing something positive to improve my lifestyle.  (And does that counter-act the wine I was drinking the night before? lol).

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