Comeback Kid

A friend sent me a very bittersweet text today.

Facebook reminded her that, 2 years ago today, we ran our first 5K together.  That was also the first time I had ran an entire 5K without stopping and killed my goal time.

That reminder would have stung a whole lot worse if I hadn’t just received some amazing news.

Guess who just finished their first run in…umm..I really don’t know how long to be honest.

This gal.

Cliff and I just finished Day 1 of Couch to 5k.  It was perfect to help get me back into the swing of things.  My physical therapist released me last night as long as I agreed to take it super slow and to only do jog/walk intervals for no more than 20 minutes.

It makes a ton of sense that the first time I’m told I can run in months and this is what it looks like outside.

We managed to make it about 2 miles in the the time limit, so I’ll take it.  I am still kind of sore, but it’s hard to tell if it’s my brain being a big fat liar or my body just not being used to the movements anymore.  My PT and I have talked a lot about the mental aspect of chronic pain and I’ve started reading books about meditation and mindfulness.  It’s amazing how your brain will trick you.

Always remember one thing.  Your brain is a total asshole.

There are numerous studies showing that meditation is one of the most effective ways of managing chronic pain and illness.  The study below focuses primarily on low back, neck, and shoulder pain.  It reported that, after 10 weeks of practice, 65% of patients showed more than a 33% improvement in pain and over half had a decrease of more than 50%.

If nothing else, it certainly can’t hurt to try.  I already know that certain mindful practices help with anxiety, so there’s really no con to stepping up my game.

I have the rest of the week mapped out and I’m actually feeling really good about things.  I would love it if I could just walk out my door tomorrow and run a 5K, but my sore bum tells me that’s probably not going to happen.  I’m ok with that though and I’m ready to face a long, tough road of getting back to where I was.  I know none of this is ever going to be easy for Cliff and I, but I refuse to give up and I’m determined to find my own perfect…whatever size or weight that might be.


Nashville Fail

One of my new mental health initiatives is to make a positive comment every time I make a negative one.

Since I know this post is going to be riddled have a few negative parts I’ll go ahead and start with the positive.  🙂

  1. The no gym thing is still working out.  I’ve downloaded the Peloton app and I love it!  It’s $12.99 a month and I get access to unlimited spin classes.  They release at least 10 new ones a day so it’s impossible to get bored.  I’m still in the beginner section, but I think I’ll be able to expand fairly soon.  Next on the agenda…find and purchase an elliptical for Clifford.
  2. My Mom is still KILLING her Country Heat workouts.  Turns out she’s quite the accountability partner as well.
  3. Two of our very close friends have recently started their own health journey and have asked for our help.  We all agreed to take a group approach and keep each other on our toes.  We all weigh in together on Sundays and set up a different group goal to work towards each week for the next four weeks.  I’m really excited to see how we do!
  4. My physical therapist thinks I’ll be able to ease back into running in a few weeks!  I’ve been 99% pain free for a couple weeks now and things just seem to get better and better.  He even said I may be able to run the mini-marathon next year!
  5. I’m going to Cincinnati with family this weekend (my Mom and two aunts) and I can’t wait.  We have plans on hitting the trifecta – IKEA, Jungle Jim’s, and the Premier Outlets.  Dream come true trip!

Pretty great stuff going on right now.  Seeing it all written out like that makes the next story much easier to swallow.

Our trip to Nashville was a a total fail.

First – the bed in the master bedroom collapsed – no fun story here – just …fell apart when I laid down to read a book:

At first we were going to try and make it work.  Cliff was convinced he could sleep at a slight angle and if it bothered him we would find a hotel the next day.  So we stayed up and played board games until about 1:30AM and when we went to bed…it collapsed the rest of the way.  Fortunately, Marriott was there to save the day.

We went to the hotel and our friends stayed at the house and the next morning we all packed up and stayed the next night at the hotel.  Then the host refused to refund us for the first night and I had to contact the rental agency and send pictures of our text messages showing them that the host knew about the problem prior to our stay.  Long story short, I was reimbursed the entire amount and given a $50 credit on a future stay.

However, the whole event stressed me out to the point where I totally lost my resolve and pigged out.  Originally the plan was to only eat at Ellendale’s and no other restaurants.


Yeah, right.

Instead we spent Saturday night wolfing down random meat entrees at a Brazilian steakhouse.  Service was horrible, but the food was amazing.

We also decided to pass on Ellendale’s after reading the latest reviews.  Instead we found this little gem.

One word.  Bronut.

So, in summary,  we ended our no restaurant challenge (we made it 46/90 days) and gained EIGHT POUNDS in three days.

Hence – The Nashville Fail.

On the upside, our pups also got to celebrate when we got home.

I did manage to get back on track really quickly and have since lost the sodium gain.  The ease of working out at home has really helped.  Even though it still isn’t what it used to be, I’m still doing far better than I have been for the majority of the past year or so.

We have loads of exciting things coming up this year and I’m determined to be in better shape for them. While I’m less and less concerned about the number on the scale, I would like to be back to my lowest weight (187) before we go to San Diego in August.  That would require a 1.8 pound per week loss.

I know I may never reach 160 pounds, especially without having skin removal surgery, but I’ve figured out that I’m ok with that.  I loved my body (in hindsight, of course) when I was a size 10/12 and about 190 pounds.  I was also living a lifestyle that I know I can maintain.  Realizing that I work best with defined goals in mind was a real eye opener.  I’ve gone back to tracking my weight in my bullet journal, doing weekly/monthly challenges, and talking to my PT about a game plan to run again.  With my wonderful support network (many of which are now on their own journey to a healthy lifestyle) I’m sure I can be back to my happy place in no time!


I Hate the Gym..and That’s OK!

Well, today will make my third time trying physical therapy.  Something about that being a charm or something, right?


This person seems to think it’s a back issue since the pain in my leg still hasn’t fully resolved.

We’ll see.

Overall, things are still going ok.  I’m not back to the point where I want to be just yet, but I’m getting there.  I had a pretty good sized revelation that I think is going to be interesting.

Turns out…I hate the gym.

I don’t hate working out (I’m still REALLY enjoying the trainer) but there’s just something about the gym that I don’t actually enjoy.  Going here and there out of necessity is one thing, but depending on it for my workouts actually causes some really bad anxiety.  I have a theory that the elliptical may be one of my main issues.  I met Kelsey at the gym Saturday morning and, since I got there a little early, I hopped on the Arc Trainer instead of the elliptical. I was perfectly fine for the first 12 minutes, but about 5 minutes into my workout with her on the elliptical my leg began to ache and it just got worse from there.

When the thought, “I truly hate the gym” first hit me I was overwhelmed with negative thoughts.  Was this just going to be one more reason to “fail?”


I immediately started listing all the positives of putting my primary focus on a home routine and soon I was getting excited about the next week!  I knew my biggest issue would be the “guilt” of not working out with Cliff or Kelsey anymore.  So, instead of stretching it out and worrying about it – I told them right away.

It was actually really hard to say.  Accepting that I’m not any more responsible for their schedule and preferences than they are of mine was oddly difficult.  I knew if either of them were to ever come to me and tell me, “Hey – this isn’t working for me anymore so I’m going to try X” I would be nothing but supportive.

Fortunately, I have an amazing husband and friends who afforded me the same response.

With the exception of squats (which have been temporarily removed from my workout while I’m in therapy) my home and training workouts don’t seem to bother me at all – or, at least, very little.  I’m going to be working with my therapist and my trainer today to come up with a dedicated home workout and see how that goes.  Fingers crossed!

Food has been…meh.  We’ve stuck to the no restaurants, no soda, and no alcohol, but my calorie count has been higher than I would like.

On a brighter note – we did reach a new level of nerd.  Well, my husband did.


Outside of diet and fitness reports, the rest of life seems to be moving along at a rapid (but enjoyable) pace.  I signed up for a course at the University of Louisville to start working towards my PMP.  The course is 16 weeks long and meets for 3 hours every Thursday.  At the end I’ll receive a certification in Project Management so that’s really exciting!

We also made huge progress on our basement.  I started working from home on Mondays so it just made sense to set up a legit home office.

Yes, I spent far more time setting up my decor than the actual office equipment.

I also made my second Instant Pot meal (technically, I made my second and third…only the second survived).

Yes, there is actually a roast in there.

I never claimed to be a photographer, but I assure you the flavor of the pot roast was about 1,000 times better than the picture.  It was also my first time using fresh rosemary and thyme.  Needless to say, I’ll be doing that more often from now on.  I made it 34 years thinking dried seasonings were the best thing ever.


This week is going to be super busy.  Physical therapy, training session, first PMP course, haircut, and then our annual Valentine’s Day tradition of going to Nashville for brunch.  I’m looking forward to the one and only restaurant allowance during our challenge.  We rented a house from AirBnB so we can make sure and cook all our other meals fairly easily.  This marks Year #7 for our little getaway (would be 8 had we not been trapped by an ice storm one year).  It looks like it might even be warm enough to take the bikes!  🙂