Saturday, August 28, 2010

Fun Workout Playlists!

"Somewhere in the world someone is training when you are not. When you race him, he will win."
-Tom Fleming

Since most of my time that I am not running, working out, or finding new workouts to try are spent looking for the songs that I listen to while I do those things, I thought I would share some of my favorite workout songs with you. It is hard to keep up with all the new songs, but my favorite X-Bike Instructor is always up to date with her awesome music, so I take a lot of her songs for my playlists too.

Here is my Half Marathon Playlist for the upcoming Disneyland Half Marathon:

Try sleeping with a broken heart, Alicia Keys
Just A Dream, Nelly
Sexy Chick, David Gueeta
Starry Eyed Suprprise, Paul Oakenfold
RudeBoy, Rihanna
Push It, Salt n Pepa
Teenage Dream, Katy Perry
Dynamite, Taio Cruz
The Rockafeller Skank, FatBy Slim
Gold Digger, Glee Cast!
Love the Way You Lie, Eminem featuring Rihanna
Waking Up in Vegas Remix, Katy Perry
Bulletproof, LaRoux
TiK ToK, Ke$ha
According to You, Orianthi
Hard, Rihanna
Jessie's Girl, Glee Cast!
Dj Got us fallin' in Love, Usher
Not Afraid, Eminem
Mockingbird, Rob Thomas
Forever, Chris Brown
Jump Around, House of Pain
Bigger than My Body, John Mayer
Lose Yourself, Eminem
Run This Town, Rihanna
Just the Way you Are, Bruno Mars
Take It Off, Ke$ha
Magic, B.O.B.
Not Ready to Make Nice, Dixie Chicks

These are my favorite songs. I have a few others, but these are my "get up and go" songs!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Tired.. and scared of a burnout

"Success isn't how far you got, but the distance you traveled from where you started."

The past couple of days have been hard. I had a great 16 miles run on Saturday and then it went downhill on Sunday. I have had some workouts that aren't that awesome, but I do feel a little bit of a burnout from running. I am hoping today will be my turning point and I will be back on track! I know it has only been a day, but I know when I feel different.

I have 10 days before my next Half Marathon and then less than 2 months until my first Marathon. I am very excited for this, I think whatever my time, I will be happy. I would like to finish and still be able to walk!

Also, Jesse and I had visitors this weekend, his brother and girlfriend. They are a cute couple. I am excited because I do see myself getting along with his girlfriend and she has become interested in running! This is exciting because I love running so much that we will have fun things to do together! Her plan is to do a Half Marathon next year and a Marathon! This is such exciting news that I love to be a part of!

Hopefully this run today will get me back on track...

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

16 days to go before Disney Half Marathon!

"If you can dream it, you can do it."
-Walt Disney
I thought it would be appropriate to include a great Walt Disney quote since my topic today is about my participation in the 5th Annual Disneyland Half Marathon Weekend. The most awesome thing about this is that it is a fast, flat course... so that means I am hoping to crush my previous Half Marathon time!
The course takes you through Disneyland, California Adventure, and throughout the Downtown Anaheim, including Anaheim Stadium. Although not a major Angels Fan, I am a huge baseball fan, so this will be a fun part of the run. It also seems to be about the halfway mark for the course, which can help me with my pace and timing.
In addition to all my running, I have been focusing on strength training (mostly weight lifting and foam rollin') and x-bike classes. These are awesome and a great cardio workout! I love going to the class and pushing myself to the limit. I have used some of the same mental tactics that I use to get through each class when I am running and I feel like I can't go any further. Just Monday, I challenged myself to run at a 9:00 pace/mile for 5 miles and I was about to do it for 7.22 miles!! WHAT!? I still surprise myself each day that I run to what I can accomplish next.
About 2 weeks and counting for my next 13.1 miles. In the mean time, I will still be running longer runs throughout the week since my first FULL Marathon is coming up on October 17th in San Francisco.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Finally, an update!

"In a country where only men are encouraged, one must be one's own inspiration."
-Tegla Loroupe, 1994 NYC Marathon Champion

For the past couple months, the training has been going very well. I will use this as an excuse for not blogging. But I am back and ready to share all my fun happenings over the past couple of months.
First, on June 11, Jesse and I ran the SF Giant Race in San Francisco, Ca.

Here are our times:

Jesse: 2 hrs 3 minutes
Megan: 2 hrs 23 minutes

This was our first Half Marathon and the beginning of what I think will be a fun and exciting running career! I love the feeling of the race, but I do get a little bit anxious and I tend to start out running faster than I would like to when I first start the race.

My goals for my next Half Marathon.. which will be in exactly 21 days...
--Be more aware of my pace
--Be ready to kick it in to HIGH gear the last 3 miles
--Beat my time from last Half Marathon by 10 minutes

I know these goals are attainable because I have been training like crazy. Even though it is crazy to me, I know most other runners train a lot more. But I am in the competition with myself. And I have always told myself that I will do this running for myself. To prove to myself that I am worth it and that I am doing this to be who I am. Running makes me happy and when I accomplish a great workout or run, the endorphins are so addicting.

Heads up for what is to come... My FIRST Marathon. This will be a monumental occassion for me because this will be my ultimate goal that I have had since I have started my weight loss. My first Marathon will be the Nike Womens Marathon in San Francisco, Ca on October 17.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Nike Women's Festival, Downtown Sacramento

"Ask yourself: 'Can I give more?'. The answer is usually: 'Yes'."
-Paul Kergat

Today I participated in the Nike Women's Fitness Festival 5k Run in Downtown Sacramento. I was supposed to do it with my friend Heidi, but she was unable to join me. This gave me an opportunity to "test" myself and my speed ability!

As Jesse and I made our way downtown, Jesse encouraged me to try to run the 5k as fast as I could possibly run since I wasn't running with anyone... so that was the plan.

I ran the 5k in 26 minutes, 52 seconds!!! This is my best time ever for a 5k.... so this turned into a great running day!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Last Saturday Run!

"Running is a big question mark that's there each and every day. It asks you, 'Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?"
-Peter Maher

OMG! Last Saturday was my longest run so far... 12 miles. I was not feeling like it was going to be either a great run or a horrible one. So, before I left the house, I took 2 CLIF Bloks and said "It is going to a good run!"

I decided to do a different route. This helped me focus on my running form more so than anything else. I decided I was going to run 6 miles out and then have to run the 6 miles back. This to me seemed like the best way for me to stick to running the full 12 miles.

During my run, I continued to remined myself about my form. This is what I have been working on so much the past couple of months. I want to make sure I am doing everything I can in order to fully use my body to its capability. I continued through my run with the mindframe "chest up, breath in and out, and knees high". This helped me stay focused.

Sometimes I think it is really hard to run alone, but I also think that it is hard to run with other people unless they are at your skill level. I want to push myself as mush as I can. but I also need to make sure that I am taking care of myself.

Time for this week's runs.. tomorrow I have 8 miles to do. Next Sat. 06/12 is my First Half.. we will see how it goes!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Half Marathon Training (276 miles run)

"A lot of people run a race to see who's the fastest, I run to see who has the most guts."
-Steve Prefontaine

So, I have been on a 12 week Nike Running Half Marathon Training plan through the Nike Plus website. It has been going pretty good, but we are now getting into some of my longer runs and I am having such a hard time. At the same time, work has been requiring more of me, so I have had to change my schedule a little bit to accomodate, AND I can totally tell in my energy level.

To help with the much needed energy, I have been adding more and more coffee... I know that probably isn't the best, but studies show that coffee increases your metabolism. In addition, I have been eating yogurt EVERY day. I have found m y new favorite, Chobani Greek Yogurt. OMG! THis tuff is delicious. And I am not kidding. Once I am finished, I want more and more. And it has tons of protein and calcium.. stuff my body needs to thrive.

Jesse and I have 4 weeks until our FIRST EVER HALF MARATHON!! We are both anxious and yet very exicted to show off what we have worked SOOO hard to do. To some people, this may be so easy for them and not a big deal... but for a few of us, this is a great accomplishment. THis is the defining goal that we have all been working toward and this Half Marathon is the beginning of many fun runs that I am going to look forward to sharing with my family, friends, and more importantly my husband. I am so thankful that he has been there for me all along the way and NEVER hesitated in supporting me and making the choices that we did.

I will say.. something I tell my Dad all the time... the most forgiving thing is your body. No matter how bad you treated it before, it will always forgive you and work for you if you give it what it needs and treat it kindly. Remember this when you are working out, choosing your meals, and ultimately in your everyday life.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

The results are in.. and I was selected for the Full Marathon! AHHH!!!

"In running, it doesn't matter if you come in first, in the middle of the pack, or last. You can say 'I have finished'. There is a lot of satisfaction in that."
-Fred Lebow

Yes.. I got in. I was selected for one of the most elite Marathons there is. THE NIKE WOMEN's MARATHON!!! Words cannot describe my excitement along with my fear of running the marathon. It is 26.2 miles in San Francisco, Ca on October 17, 2010. This will be my first (and possibly only) Marathon, it all depends on the outcome!!

With my Nike Running Plus Sportband, I am able to train for the Marathon through the internet. They have a lot of resources and training guidelines for me to get prepared. Our next run is June12th in SF as well. This will be my first half marathon that I will be running with my husband as well. We have both come so far in our journeys, it is important to do this first one together. For the Marathon though, I think it is important for me to do on my own. It will be such a personal accomplishment, that I need to do on my own.

More to come with my training plans and running playlists.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

3 Lessons Learned tonight

"Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it."

1. Never run after 7pm in Spring in Sacramento near marshlands. I am sure this was a given, but I was just hoping there wouldn't be that many bugs.

2. Don't think just because you have lost most of your boobs that you don't need a sport bra.

3. Never, ever run in shorts. Now matter what. Spandex is better.

I'm just sayin'.

Nike Women's Marathon

"Run hard, be strong, think BIG!"
-Percy Cerutty

I registered for the Marathon on April 5.. the day that registration started. I really want to get picked for this Marathon for it to be my first one. I would have plenty of time to train effectively for my best time for a marathon.

I read a book this past week about starting to train for a Marathon. It was the best book I have read regarding running. Running has become so important to me.. so it was more important that I find joy in it. Dawn Dais, the author of thie book was able to be sarcastic (which I love) and funny about not being the best at something, but still trying.

I have always been similar to the author in competition. Running is a sport that makes competition within yourself to do your best and push your limits. My experience with competition has always been with a team and specializing in a position to help succeed. Running has taught me to be self reliant and also made me aware of what I can achieve.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Nike Plus Running Sportband...

"If the furnace is hot enough, it will burn anything."
-John Parker, Once a Runner

Ok, this is sent from God.. but at times it can be my worst enemy. I use the Nike + sportband to track my miles ran. I got the sportband for Christmas and love it. This is my problem with it. Although great, I have had to reset it twice.. in less than 4 months use. And when you reset it, you lose all your progress... so it really is a damper when you have run up to 156 miles (which I had) and then you have to delete all those sweaty miles. Tonight was frustrating, but I was able to make it through my 5 mile run.. just thinking about missing my sportband the whole time.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Half Marathon Training... 63 days left!

"Good things come slow- especially in distance running."
-Bill Dellinger, Oregon Coach

I have been training for the Half Marathon in San Francisco on June 11, 2010. This Half Marathon is to benefit Project Open Hand, which is an incredible organization. I have 63 days left to get my body, mind and spirit ready for the run.

Friday, April 9, 2010

How it all started

"Fear is a great motivator"
-John Treacy, 1984 Olympic Silver Medalist

How do you start a "new lifestyle"?I knew I wanted to lose weight. I knew I had about 100 lbs. to lose. I knew it was going to be hard... and that I would never feel like I would be done. And the reason for that is because what I was starting was my new life.

First things first, know what you are getting into. I had a small idea of what I was preparing myself for, but nothing like what actually happened.

My husband and I started attending our gym... EVERY night. I would walk and then do small amounts of weight training. Back then, I knew I needed cardio, but wasn't sure how much.

Starting May 1, 2009 I started my 5k a day regimen. This consisted of walking 5k (3.1 miles) everyday with varying inclines on a treadmill. This was not hard, but it definitely pushed me to go further and further each day.

In addition to this workout plan, I cut out ALL fast food. This was a major adjustment since I was very used to eating at every fast food restaurant known to man. My favorites included In-N-Out Burger, Taco Bell, and McDonald's. I would eat at a fast food restaurant AT LEAST once a day, sometimes more. Unfortunately it was my ignorance and stupidity to believe that--1. this could possibly be good for my body and 2. the food they served was actual food. It is disappointing to learn about all the preservatives, processed "food"(if you really want to call it that) and just plain bad ingredients that most of the food I ate every day contained.

As the months went by, every gym workout became easier and easier and the pounds were melting away. I practiced out healthy recipes for dinner for me and my husband. Some worked... and some were just not good. But that is part of the fun. I cut my calories to 1,500 per day... which was about half of what I had been eating before. I was hungry... A LOT. But I also found ways to help with the hunger at first--eating an apple before your meal or drinking more water throughout the day.

I remember losing 18 lbs. and that was the moment I thought to myself "I can do this... no, wait--I AM DOING THIS". I could see myself for who I always felt I was on the inside... slowly coming through from what I refer to as my "swollen self". At my heaviest, I weighed XXX lbs. and it was so sad. I wasn't necessarily sad, but I did not look like the girl I felt on the inside. I knew deep down that I was able to change my exterior to match who I was on the inside, it would just take a trigger to get me motivated.

That trigger went off and I was ready to go! The 18 lbs. turned into 50 lbs. lost... and then to 75 lbs. lost. At this point, I had changed drastically on the outside.. and somewhat on the inside. I was ready for the next step. I started running.....

Running as cardio makes it hard to lose weight. When you run at an intense level, your body craves more energy in the form of food!!! Since I had cut my caloric intake to between 1,500-1,800 a day, it made it hard to have the energy to last long runs. I found foods like complex carbohydrates that would keep me fuller longer and also make my body work for the energy. I also made sure I stayed hydrated.

Last August, my husband and I ran our first 5k for Project Open Hand/SF Giants. My time was 35 minutes and 33 seconds. This was such an accomplishment for me. I had never been able to run in my life for more than a mile... and even when I did-- I hated it. Really. I enjoyed every minute of this run. The adrenaline rush is beyond anything I can describe!

My training for running consisted of 3 runs per week. I would run between 3-4 miles each day. At the same time, I started taking x-bike classes. I was frightened and sooo sore the day after my first class. It is one of the hardest gym classes I have ever taken. It was so hard that it made me want to do better at that too... I attend 3 x-bike classes each week now.

Our next battle was a 10k (6.1 miles). We signed up for the SuperBowl 10k at Sac State for February 6, 2010. My time was 1 hour 1 minute. I had definitely improved since my last 5 k! This was also a reassuring feeling because it also marked my 90 lbs. lost mark. I have 10 lbs. to go until I make my ultimate goal, but I know that I am focusing on my next fitness goal--my first half marathon and then eventually my first full marathon.

Today, I am focused on my Half Marathon on June 12th in San Francisco. This will be my first Half Marathon and I will be completing it with my husband by my side.

My training for the run consists of:
Sunday: rest day
Monday/Wednesday/Thursday: 5 mile run/30 minute x-bike class/strength training 30 min
Tuesday: rest day
Friday: strength training 1 hour
Saturday: 10-20 mile run (depending on where I am prior to the Half Marathon)

The beginning...

"No pain, No gain."
-Athletic proverb

So.. I told myself I would not jump on the "blog" wagon, but it seems as though I have. With that being said... I am approaching my 1 year anniversary of my "official" start of working out and changing my lifestyle.

On April 24, 2009, I realized I needed a hobby... and with the help (and the constant encouragement) of my husband I was able to start one. I was overwhelmed with a lot of different emotions and needed to find an outlet to work out my frustrations with certain elements in my life. Together, we made the change to eat healthy, be active, and eat to nourish our bodies. These are are so simple to say, but they are hard decisions to actually make happen.

Eating clean and healthy takes effort and discipline. It also takes time to do your research. Much of my research started with many cookbooks, Cooking Light magazines, websites, and A LOT of "nutrition facts labels" on ALL the food I purchased.

The gym was a different story. I had always been active in life, playing sports in high school and enjoying being active, but there was always something missing. The drive to want to accomplish something. I wanted to excel in becoming active, no matter how I planned on losing the weight.

My goals are...

To lose 100 lbs.

Run a Marathon before I turn 30

Be a Gym Class Instructor

Encourage others to lose weight

Make healthy recipes (possibly into a cookbook)

In the upcoming blogs, I will refer back to what I have accomplished this past year and what my plans are for the future.