Friday, May 27, 2011

Weighing in Before the Weekend...

Just a quick note before I head off to enjoy the Memorial Day weekend.  May you all have a wonderful weekend!  I hope it's good weather and full of fun where ever you are.  I've all ready have a BBQ cancelled due to the weather prediction of rainy weather here.  I'm really hoping it'll clear enough so I can get out on my bicycle.  Keep you fingers crossed!  I'm trying to think happy thoughts and sunshine.  I hope positive thinking can change the weather but if it doesn't I'm going to end up looking like this mad puppy! Grrr! 
I found myself down another pound this morning when I weigh in.  Yes!  I'm now down a total of 20 lbs.  and I have 12 more to go!  It feels good and I'm really feeling good about my progress.  I'm about 2/3 of the way towards my goal weight. 

Friday, May 20, 2011

A Quick Weigh In & An Art Show...

The scale stuck tightly with the same weight as last week.  I'm still down 19 lbs. and still have 13 more to go.  It's a bit of a stalemate I suppose.  I will admit that with the rainy weather we've been getting a great deal of late I didn't get the exercise I usually do.  I just barely managed to get to the top of the Emigration Canyon ride on Tuesday night before it started getting a bit rainy on the way down.  And it was chilly on top of it!  Last night it was rainy again and I ended up at the gym last night.  I ran 3.25 miles on the treadmill and then "cooled down" on the elliptical for 25 minutes.  The cramp came back but it was after almost 3 miles running.  I ran a mile then did some stretches, and then ran more.  I'm thinking that maybe I just need to do a bit more stretching with my runs in the future.

Tonight is the opening for the 3rd Annual Gallery Roll 2011.  It's a Bike Art Show that takes place at a local bike shop; The Salt Lake City Bike Company in downtown Salt Lake City.  Bike and Art my two favorite things combined.  What fun!  The show is kind of unofficially a part of the Salt Lake City Gallery Stroll, and it's also kind of part of the Salt Lake City Bike to Work Week.  Then, May is national bike month too.  I was in this art show two years ago with my Halloween Bike painting.  This year, I have three of my paintings that were accepted into the show; one oil painting and two watercolors. 
Here's one of them.... 
"Shadow Cycling Chalk Creek Canyon", watercolor on paper.

Monday, May 16, 2011

A Little Tri Training...

Yesterday morning, I went with my friend Diane and a group of gals down to American Fork to do a preview of the Women of Steel Triathlon course.  This triathlon takes place next Saturday.  Since my favorite Chalk Creek Bike ride got cancelled due to flash flood conditions and high winds, I thought I would tag along with them.  All of them are doing this Tri next Saturday.  I was the odd man out and just wanted to get out and do something.  We met at the American Fork Rec Center where the Tri will start and finish.

The pool was closed and all of us took a gander at it through the fence.  But the main focus was to check out the bike and run course.  The bike route was comprised of two 6 mile loops, and the run was one lap of about 3 miles. 

We all got on our bikes first and started out on the course.  I quickly took to the lead, partially because I was familiar with the area and partially because I'm such a strong rider; my sport of choice.  The course was done in a clockwise loop.  The first part there was the wind at your bike as your climbing a bit of a hill; not too bad.  I will admit it was pretty with a little cemetery and fields with horses grazing. 

As you turned the corner to come back, BOOM the wind hit you full on!  It was blowing pretty hard and cut down the speed we were riding.  The wind was a definite issue.  I did my usual making myself small and focus on the pedaling.  I built up a distance from the gals that had been keeping up with me.  It was almost with a sigh that I took the turn back to the start for a second loop.  We waited for all and then started the second loop.

This will be Alex's (in blue here) first Tri!
Next was the run, which was basically the same route as the bike but with an earlier turn.  I had changed into my running shoes and stripped down to a sports tank under my bike jersey.  It was getting a bit warm out but still pretty windy.  All of us waited and started out at the same time.  Quickly most of the gals passed me on the run; not my sport of choice especially when going up hill.  I've never been good running up hill even with the wind at my back.  I will admit that I managed to keep the gals within sight until the last turn when they still had the energy to sprint to the finish.  Not me!  I discovered after about 2 miles in that my darn butt cramp from last week came back.  There must be something about running that's making it come out.  Because I had managed to bike almost 60 miles this last week and had no problem with it.    

Friday, May 13, 2011

Weighing In & Spring’s in the Air…

The scale cooperated with me this morning and gave me the other half of the pound I almost lost last week. I’ll admit surprise at this; sometimes I really think this scale hates me. But I’m pleased and that puts me at a total of 19 lbs. lost, and 13 more to go. I’m getting there; slow but sure.

Photo of the tree blossoming near where I park my car at work.  Spring flowers!

Spring seems to be in the air at last. The weather has finally seemed to turn nice for the last couple of days. I went out on a club bike ride last night and almost felt nude wearing my bike shorts. It was the first ride where I didn’t have to haul all that extra gear along with me. I got to leave the extra jacket, the skull cap, the knee warmers, and the arm warmers in the car. I could actually feel the breeze run through my helmet and hair. Now this is bike riding at its best! Awe; what a treat!

Last night I got another treat just after work and before heading to the bike ride. A co-worker took me out for a quick drive in his little red convertible. I had all ready changed into my spandex out bike outfit and had donned a ball cap. He was whipping around the corners like we were on rails and he zoomed it up to 80mph on the interstate. It was fun but I kept on expecting to see a cop pull us over for speeding. I teasingly asked him how many speeding tickets he had gotten since he gotten the car. None he said; so either he was showing off for his co-worker (me) or he’s been lucky so far. Hmmmmm….

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Pain in the A$$, Literally...

Last night it was raining so I went to the gym to work out. I ran 3.1 miles and then I proceeded to do a “cool down” of 16 minutes on the elliptical machine. It was as I was climbing the stairs to my third story apartment that I discovered I had a cramp in my left butt cheek. Ouch! I tell you it was a painful climb. I paused on the landings as I went up.

What I call the "Extreme Plow" yoga pose.
I have tried every stretch that I can think of to try to get this cramp out. I even did what I call the extreme yoga plow pose to shake this cramp loose. I soaked in the tub and then put ice on it afterwards. Then, I took the hot water bottle out after that. Nothing seems to be working! So today instead of my usual high heels I’m wearing a pair of funky brown short boots with skirt; a fashion statement I can pull off. But what’s really aggravating me is that I’m walking with a limp.  HELP!?!  Anyone have any thoughts or ideas out there?  The only other option I can think of is going in for massage.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A Late End of Month Report...

This is late by a couple of days. Oppps! I kind of spaced it off completely, but better late than never as they say. So here it goes….

As far as my savings goal, I’m behind my saving schedule by about $50... I’ve had birthdays, get well presents, and Mother’s Day coming up and it’s made a dent in the finances. I must admit that I didn’t add gift giving into my budget. It’s something that I need to look.  In other words, I need to figure that stuff in the budget plan.

Weight loss has been progressing along fine. I was down a total of 18 lbs. as of this last Saturday morning. I’ve been averaging about 4.5 lbs weight loss every month; which is a good steady pace.  I've really been please with this pace and my progress.

Here’s the nitty gritty for the month…
4 hours on the elliptical
21.65 miles running
2.4 miles swimming
159 miles biking
Read 9 books (Up to 23 books for the year)

Even with this strange Spring time weather, I’ve been managing to get out on the bicycle. I’m hoping that it will warm up even more and then I’ll get 400 miles in cycling in the month. I also hope to get a little more mileage in running too. Speaking of running, last Friday night while on the “dredmill” doing 3 miles; I broke an average speed record. I managed to run an average speed of 11 minute and 4 second mile! Normally, I’m a slow 12 minute mile. I’ve been doing little drills all winter long on the treadmill to help improve my time. Now as far as the reading of books, I blame the bad weather to enabling me to read more. Last year I read 57 books and I wouldn’t be surprised if I break the 60 mark this year.

"100 Salt Lake City Porches, No. 40"- Poured Watercolor on paper

I’m working on porch #40 of my 100 Salt Lake City Porches project. I will admit that recently I took a bit of a break and did some bike art. The Gallery Roll, which is put on by a downtown bike shop was looking for some bike art, and I thought Why Not? So I painted a few watercolors and entered a couple of those along with an oil painting I did this last fall. I’ll let you know which ones get in, but in the meantime check out my progress on the 100 Salt Lake City Porches. I’m up to 40 of them! Wow!

As far as the goal of uncluttering my life, well… I’ve started a pile of clothing from the closet but it’s not very sizable. I’m figuring that as the weather warms that I’ll bring out the summer clothes, and start going through those and get rid of stuff that I’m really hoping is too big because of my weight loss. Keep your fingers crossed!