Actual exercise? WHAT?!!!

I know.  It's hard to believe.

Yesterday's workout:
Fire 30 (New to Class) and Stretch 10
436 calories/44:00

Today's run:
Half Marathon Training Day 1
3.81 miles/54:53

Apparently all I really needed to do to get some motivation was to blog about how I had no motivation.  Good old guilt - works every time!

Soon after posting yesterday about how lazy I'd been, I realized I needed to stop being lazy, and maybe attempt to fit in my pants again.  So I got out of bed (yes, I was in bed at 4:30 pm... shut up) and decided to do some Turbo Fire.  And it was made EXTRA AWESOME because I had a friend... David agreed to try it with me!  We settled on Fire 30 because it's the shortest of the non-HIIT Turbo Fire workouts, and D-Money was a little worried about it.  It was worth being worried about.  I love Chalene, but it had been a while since I'd done a workout... how quickly I forget that she is a beast.  By the end, we were both sweating out of places we weren't sure we could sweat out of.  Enjoy that image.

Davy Crockett here has fewer chins than me, but don't even think that he wasn't wheezing right along.

I thought for sure that he'd hate me for the rest of time for doing that to him, but he's already made a few comments about how he'd like to do it again today!  HA!  Turbo Fire addiction success.

Before I went to bed last night, I plugged in the Garmin so it could charge overnight - I did the math and it had been 10 days since my last run.  I swore to myself that this time, I wouldn't let my motivation die out after finishing Couch to 5K, and that wasn't exactly a solid start.  So my love handles and I got out of bed around 7:30 this morning and went on a run.  

It was a rough beginning - my left knee was throbbing and I kept getting shin splints.  For the first 10 or 15 minutes, I had to do shorter splits... 2 minutes running and 1 minute walking versus my usual 3 minutes to 1 minute ratio.  But after a while, my legs seemed to get used to running again and I got warmed up.  It still wasn't my fastest run ever (my best average pace was 12:52), but I did it!  And I know it will only keep getting better as long as I stick with it again.  I'm now planning on following the Hal Higdon Half Marathon Plan for the "novice" runner.  I made today my Tuesday according to the plan because I just wanted to get started again and not wait for two more days.  I actually ran 3.12 instead of the 3 miles as instructed.  The rest of the distance was a warm-up walk and cool-down walk.  Complete with wheezing.

Since I don't really know the area all that well, I decided to just run up and down streets in the neighborhood.  As it turns out, there are gorgeous houses very near D-Dawg's apartment.  Between bouts of wheezing, I managed to snap a couple random pictures, trying very hard not to be a complete creeper and take full frontals of the houses I wanted to live in.

After I got back and dripped sweat all over the carpet for the second day in a row, I made some breakfast with David... who seemed pretty thrilled for his healthy choices to show up on my blog.  So now you have to see food pictures.  I know this is super thrilling.  You're welcome.

My breakfast.  And no, there is not enough butter on that English muffin.  Puhlease.

David's breakfast, complete with Almond Breeze pouring action shot.  He would like you to know that it is the unsweetened kind and everything.  Food bragger.

Now I guess I should be a grown up and shower and function like an actual person.  We'll see about that.

I am clearly super good at blogging.

Um... so... not only have I not blogged in nearly an entire week, but does anyone want to take a wild guess at how much running I've done since finishing Couch to 5K?

Come on... venture a guess...

Oh, did I hear "no running at all because you're a complete slacker and eating copious amounts of food sounded better than fitting in your pants" as a guess?  

Congratulations, voice in my head... you are correct.

So that's the reason I have not been updating my blog - out of complete shame.  I literally have not gone for a single run since finishing Couch to 5K last week.  And while I could use the excuse of "I'm on vacation" because I'm visiting David in California, I did, in fact, make a point to bring several pieces of workout clothing, two pairs of shoes (runners and cross trainers), two resistance bands, my Polar heart rate monitor AND my Garmin.  So... I have no excuse.  Except that eating cream cheese pretzels and Mickey shaped beignets in Disneyland sounded more fun than wheezing my way through 3 mile runs.

(source... because obviously I couldn't take a picture before I destroyed mine)

But it's time to face the music... especially because I'm using my stomach as a shelf for my cell phone right now and the idea of shoving the shelf into my skinny jeans is getting to be downright laughable.  I'm hoping to do some Turbo Fire today, but as you can see from the pictures above, I ACTUALLY WASHED MY HAIR TODAY, so I may not want to ruin it.  Because we've all seen how much I "glisten" while working out.

That's it.  I have not fallen off the face of the Earth, I have not died... I have not even spent every waking moment in Disneyland, despite an overwhelming desire to crawl into It's A Small World and try to blend in.  I just haven't worked out.  So in lieu of having anything sweaty or calorie burning to write about (though I'm pretty sure we walked at least 10 miles doing 16 hour days in Disneyland), I leave you with probably my new favorite comedian ever... who would understand my lack of exercise.

Slacker, party of one, your table is now ready.

I kind of can't believe that I haven't updated in an entire week... but this week has been absolutely nuts.  You can pretty much blame three things for my absence.


and who can forget...

All super awesome things... okay, maybe working a ton wasn't all that awesome, but having money is splendid.  But I can't believe I left my blog hanging, especially since I FINISHED COUCH TO 5K THIS WEEK!!  And it was splendid.  But I will post more on that later, because right now I want to hang out with my Pops and celebrate Father's Day, and then I need to pack because I leave tomorrow morning for this...

So that I can see this...

and do a whole lot more of this!

Luckily, D-Money has insisted that I blog regularly while in California... mostly because he wants to read them.  So the fact that he can't get enough of me works in your favor.  And mine :)

A new, adorable addition to my family.

Today's run:
Couch to 5K Week Nine, Day One (LAST WEEK!)
3.0 miles/42:12

Today was not my greatest run of all time, but that's okay.  I went out on the trail, and it was super sunny and pretty darn warm when I went out, even though it was pretty early (about 8:30).  Plus, all I had was a banana and a few sips of Cytomax before I started running, so I think I crashed a little because of lack of sustenance.  But it wasn't a horrible run, and I got through it, so I'm proud!

I'm completely exhausted and planning on passing out very soon, but I wanted to give a little photo update of my weekend since it was a HUGE adventure.

Glorious smoothie-in-a-bowl refreshment on Saturday morning.

Rockies game this afternoon with my whole family, complete with pictures taken with my awesome new hipster-y photo app.  Sorry for not making my dad squish in there with us... he was crazy and wanted to, you know, actually watch the game.  Weird.

And then... the most exciting part of the whole weekend... bringing home this gorgeous girl.

More on that to come, I promise!  For now, it is bedtime.  Well... maybe ice cream sandwich and then bedtime.  A big weekend deserves a little something!

Why I love Weight Watchers.

If you're expecting this post to start, end, or at any point discuss a workout... please look elsewhere.  Like to Skinny Runner, who, and I quote, "did not want to run this morning," but went out and did 10.5 miles.  All at an under 9:00 pace.  Funny, I also did not want to run this morning.  So I didn't.  Good story, right?

No, this is definitely not an exercise post.  I didn't exercise yesterday because it just didn't fit into my schedule (I know, excuse of the century), and though I had planned on running today, I skipped it because I was exhausted.  Don't get me wrong, I'm on board with the idea that exercise can give you a nice energy boost when you're feeling that afternoon lull.  But trying to get in a good run when it's hot and humid outside, after 4 hours of sleep, an hour of commuting, and several hours of yakking endlessly at people... well, that might just be dumb.

But I digress.  For once, I am not writing just to whine about how hard working 10 hours a week and running 3 whole miles at a time is.  This is an entry I've been thinking of writing for a while now, and finally got my motivation to actually do it this weekend.  The thing is, I have a confession to make.  No matter how much I whine...


Okay, so maybe I'm biased.  I did after all lose about 35 pounds on it.  And it gave me a job.  But the thing is, I really am passionate that Weight Watchers is not only a great nutritional program, but an amazing system.  

You might have heard about the recent Consumer Report that named Jenny Craig as the best diet, followed by SlimFast and then Weight Watchers.  Now, I'm not here to bash - if people can lose weight, get healthier, and feel more confident by doing any kind of program (that is safe!)... I'm happy.  I know how grateful I am for my weight loss and how much better I feel, so I wish anyone trying to do the same the best of luck, regardless of the program.  But let's face facts.  Jenny Craig and SlimFast are diets.  Weight Watchers is not a diet - it's a lifestyle change.  So this study is already really problematic.  And to add to the problems... rumor has it that the study was at least partially funded by Jenny Craig.  Oh, and they used the old Weight Watchers program for the study... not the new one that was launched in January.  That's kind of an issue as well.

The thing is, I'm sure people have success on Jenny Craig.  From what I understand of the Consumer Report study is that success is one of the reasons Jenny Craig came in first - people had "impressive" success.  I'm assuming that means big, fast weight loss.  But isn't that what doctors have been telling us to avoid for years?  I can't say I was thrilled when I was losing half a pound a week, but I knew it was healthy weight loss.  If you do the math of how quickly many celebrity spokespeople lose on Jenny Craig or Nutrisystem, it's not the doctor (and Weight Watchers) recommended 1 to 2 pounds a week.  I'll take healthy over "impressive."  

And while they may have success, the study didn't seem to mention anything about the aftermath of that success.  We get a lot of people in Weight Watchers who lost weight on Jenny Craig or SlimFast, but as soon as they started eating real food again, they gained it all back, sometimes plus a few extra pounds.  Who wants to eat frozen Jenny Craig meals for the rest of their life?!  I LOVE FOOD, and I'm pretty positive that anyone else with weight issues also loves food.  I didn't get to Weight Watchers because I was eating too many baby carrots.  So what's the joy of losing weight if you're not getting to enjoy food?  And what is that teaching you about food?

Weight Watchers is not just about losing weight, and I think that is something the study, and many people looking to lose weight, seriously overlook.  If you have a weight problem, chances are good that you also have a disordered relationship with food.  So if you go on Jenny Craig, you will most likely lose weight - but does it help you mend that relationship with food?  Absolutely not.  If anything, it makes that relationship even weirder because now you're not even buying, eating, and cooking what I would consider "normal" and "real" food - you're heating up frozen meals made of God knows what.  The weight may come off, but if you try to incorporate eating normally back into your life, you haven't changed anything.  

But Weight Watchers helps you figure out your relationship with food, and navigate it so that you can eat realistically for the rest of your life.  Our topic this week was "Getting to Know Me" and it was all about what I called advanced tracking - tracking beyond just your food.  Keeping a food diary is great, and I highly recommend it to anyone losing weight, whether they are doing Weight Watchers or not, because it keeps you accountable, and it makes you aware of what you're putting in your body.  But what I urged my members to think about yesterday and today was how other things affected their relationships with food.  For instance, I asked them if they thought tracking their emotions would help - if they binged on chocolate while they were sad, would it help to write that emotion next to the food?  Here's the short answer:  HELL YES.  Because it makes you aware.  Then you know that when you are sad, you're going to crave chocolate, so get away from the candy jar and go for a walk.

I'm sorry if this got a little preachy.  I found renewed faith in Weight Watchers yesterday, and especially our new PointsPlus program, because the truth is, I've been fudging it for a while.  If you've been reading this blog regularly, you know that I've gained back a little bit of the weight I lost, but instead of really recommitting to losing it, I've just been messing around.  This week was different, and I tracked religiously, exercised well, and really stayed on program.  And it paid off - the weigh-in I was worried about (since I didn't really want to fax my weight to my boss when I was over my goal) showed that I'd lost about 5 pounds.  In a week.  And yes, that's more than the 1 or 2 recommended pounds a week, but it is normal for the first week on (or back on) the program.

Forgive the preaching.  I just sometimes lose sight of how great this program is because it's now my job, and every job comes with a lot of other stresses.  At the end of the day, though, I am so grateful that I am able to teach this program to other people, and I hope that every one of them sees the success that I did.

Running makes me bipolar.

Today's run:
Couch to 5K Week Eight, Day Three (I'M ALMOST DONE!)
2.85 miles/38:17

So... remember two days ago when I was whining about how it was too hot and my run sucked?  I know, it's hard to keep my whining straight... bear with me.  Apparently the universe decided to smile on me, and made today cool, cloudy, and rainy.  Obviously this meant that I had an awesome run.  Seriously.  AWESOME.  Easily one of the best runs I've ever had in my life.  When I left for my run, I was a little lethargic and kind of had the attitude of "it doesn't matter if it's misting a little, you HAVE to go on your run now because otherwise you're never going to do it... suck it up, princess."  And when I came back, I was bouncing off the wall, full of endorphins, and ecstatic.  I wish I could bottle that feeling.

Yes, under that frizzy curly mess is me.  You thought I had naturally straight hair, didn't you?  No, no... I was luring you into a false sense of security during our honeymoon phase together.  Now the frizz comes out, kids.

I think the highlight of the run was actually the last few minutes.  I know, that sounds a little weird coming from someone who struggles with pacing, but I actually did a fabulous job with pacing today.  I ran in my hatefully hilly neighborhood for the first time in about a month, and honestly, it was so rewarding to realize that the hills that used to kill me were less challenging.  I did a whole three minute running interval up one of those long hills, and I kept a 12 minute mile pace or under the whole time!  And afterwards, I gave myself a slightly longer walk break (a minute and 20 seconds instead of just a minute) and kept on going.  

Because of my pacing, I was able to just push through the last 5 or so minutes of the run and end feeling wonderful.  I actually really entertained myself using some positive visualizations (doubt not, unsure ones).  As I came up to a stop sign near the end, I figured I had about two minutes left.  I told myself that when I turned at the stop sign, I would be facing the finish line of the Disneyland half marathon (one of my dream races).  As it turns out, I had about 4 minutes left, and so what started as a simple visualization to keep me energized turned into an extravaganza.  Here, I give you a glimpse into my mind...

Jessica's brain:  Okay, you can see the finish line... you're so close!  You can get there!  (looks at Garmin)  You're almost there... look!  There are Mickey and Minnie waving you in!  And Donald and Goofy!  Even Stitch is there!  (looks at Garmin)  Oh, look, there's your family!  Mom is crying with pride, Dad and Lauren are cheering... and there's David!  And what does he have?  A DIAMOND NECKLACE?!  But you have to cross the finish line to get it, and you're getting closer every second!  (looks at Garmin, wonders why legs are still running)  Now there is a Cast Member from every land, and they all have something in their hands... it's a Fastpass!  Wait, it's multiple Fastpasses!  IT'S A FASTPASS FOR EVERY SINGLE RIDE IN DISNEYLAND!  And they're yours as long as you cross that finish line!  But wait, what's that sound?  They're starting Wishes in the middle of the day, just for you!  But why?  (looks at Garmin, getting slightly desperate)  Wait, where is everyone else?  Oh snap... YOU'RE WINNING THE DISNEYLAND HALF MARATHON!

That was it, more or less.  And I'm honestly not making any of that up right now.  That all came into my tiny, endorphin filled brain as I looked at my Garmin and wondered if time was standing still.  But I'll tell you, it was amazing.  I officially love visualizations.  I would be lying if I said I didn't throw my hands up in the air several times during this whole thing and yell "I'M WINNING!  I'M WINNING!"  I'm sure my neighbors think I'm special.  But I don't care because I'm the prettiest princess and I won the Disneyland half marathon today.

... seriously.  The endorphins.  See what they do to me?

It is past my bedtime.

Today's workout:
P90X Chest and Back + Ab Ripper X
430 calories/69 hateful minutes and 31 agonizing seconds

This will probably be a delusional post because I'm super tired...

... but D-Money insisted I blog so that he could read it.  Sweet.  But bordering on abusive.

And in case you're wondering, why yes, I am addicted to the vertical strip of pictures that I vainly take of myself on The Mugshot Machine.  I guess it isn't that vain though... I mean, look at what I'm showing you.  If you look closely, you can see the lovely little pooch of fat that gathers next to my armpit when I decide to go off plan for several months and eat a lot of this.

The same roommates that introduced me to Cats 101 (see latest Triple Tangent Tuesday for that gem) referred to that little fat deposit as the "baby vagina."  Call it what you will... it ain't pretty.

Today's workout... um... it was P90X.  What else can you say?  I did a whole lot of pushups and pull-ups.  I'd have to check my worksheet for exact numbers (and it is down two flights of stairs, so that obviously isn't happening) but I'm going to say I did about 8000.  Or at least that's what it felt like.  You know what doesn't feel good?  A whole bunch of pull-ups when you haven't done a single pull-up in months.  Yummy.  And before you start thinking I'm really hardcore, please know that I had a chair in front of me with one leg up on it at all times.  I think my legs are more sore than my back.

The real highlight of this workout was Ab Ripper X.  That workout is Satanic.  Anyone who thinks Lady Gaga is the Anti-Christ is incorrect.  Ab Ripper X is the Anti-Christ.

My girl Gaga is just a little special, that's all.

I think I probably only did about half of Ab Ripper X.  I had to keep taking breaks because I thought I was going to throw up.  That's a delightful feeling, isn't it?  You're going along, having a good workout, and then suddenly... that Cytomax/energy gel/drug of choice is biting you right in the ass.  All was well and I got to keep my breakfast, but I have to admit that I was worn out all day after this workout.  Meh.  Maybe I needed some more cardio to get the blood pumping?  Perhaps on top of my run tomorrow, I'll have a date with my bestie Chalene.  She'll tell me, "Guess what?  You're not tired!"  And I'll cry because I will be tired, and sweaty, and nasty... and she will still be able to kick me in the face with perfect bangs.

This is literally the limit of my mental capacity right now.  I swear I will have more coherent things to say tomorrow after serious amounts of sleep.  For right now, I will just say...

While I was Skyping with David today (before he became super abusive and really nicely and supportively encouraged me to post tonight... the nerve of him) he informed me that I am now up to EIGHT READERS!  I'm not kidding, I did a happy dance with a huge grin on my face and just about peed my pants.  I know eight isn't a huge number (I'm no Skinny Runner or Hungry Runner Girl), but it's a big deal to me.  Selfishly, I'm excited and flattered that anyone thinks my whining is worthy of attention.  Slightly less selfishly, I know that when I was progressing through my weight loss journey and getting into fitness, it helped me a lot to read about other people and their struggles and triumphs... and if I can help anybody else out there, even if it's just my showing that even a Weight Watchers Lifetime member and Leader makes mistakes, it will make every late night blog post absolutely worth it. So THANK YOU LOVELY READERS!

And now I will pass out.  It will look a lot like that last sleepy picture, but with more drool.  You're welcome.

Triple Tangent Tuesday!

Barely getting in under the wire... but Tuesdays I am the receptionist for one meeting, and those two hours of work slay me.  Whew!  How I will exist when I have to work actual hours again is beyond me.

A pre-tangent tangent... I washed my hair today!  Aaaaaaaand put on eyeshadow!  Not just one color of eyeshadow either, kids, four different eyeshadows.  I know.  It was... legen... wait for it... I hope you're not lactose intolerant because the next word is... dairy!  (and yes, I still think I'm cool)

Here's the evidence in case you are currently scoffing:
The second picture is because I realized today that my hair is taking over the world... maybe it's time for a haircut.  And the third picture is my special kid self trying to point out the eyeshadow.  It wasn't working.  For as much as I love makeup, I'm pretty bad at capturing photographic evidence of my work.

Now... Triple Tangent Tuesday!

One of my favorite restaurants in the world is a place called The Fort.  My family has celebrated a lot of holidays there in the past, and I insisted on going there for my graduation dinner.  They have possibly the greatest baked good in the world - pumpkin muffins.  I'm not even that big of a fan of pumpkin or of muffins, but these things are the greatest creations of all time.  They also will open champange with a tomahawk, which might be the coolest thing ever.  And things like this happen when you tell them you are celebrating something:

I bet you did not wear an animal skin as a hat in celebration when you graduated.  

In college, I lived alone my sophomore year, one semester of my junior year, and my last two years (senior and... super-senior).  While it got lonely and boring sometimes, I am incredibly grateful that I lived alone for so long because it really taught me independence.  I am the first to admit that I get whiny and lazy a lot, but left to my own devices, I'm actually very self sufficient (as long as you're ignoring the fact that I'm poor and make maybe $50 a week).  Plus, I feel completely comfortable doing things alone, which I think it something that a lot of people struggle with.  I've been known to go to restaurants alone and sit and have a nice meal just with myself - no book, no iPod, just me.  Like when I went to a fancy character breakfast at one of the deluxe hotels in Disney World... completely by myself.  I think all of the families took pity on me and thought I was sad and alone.  Which worked out well because I kept asking them to take my picture with the characters because I'm five years old.

Please note that doing Disney by yourself is not for the faint of heart.  You get a lot of dirty looks when you go on It's A Small World as a party of one.  People thought I was a serious creeper.

On my second stint with Disney, I lived with three girls from Wisconsin who loved cats and got me horribly addicted to a show on Animal Planet called Cats 101.  While I rarely catch the show on television, I watch the clips about each breed on the Animal Planet website obsessively.  I've made poor I'm-allergic-to-cats David watch and learn about several different breeds in an attempt to force my love of cats on him.  My personal favorite ones to watch over and over and over are the Oriental and the Munchkin.  As in, when I went to find those links, I had to watch both of them.  The Munchkin has to be one of the greatest things ever.  My roommate Maggie and I always talked about how we were going to get a Munchkin and a Welsh Corgi and be so incredibly happy with our short, chubby pets.  



I'm not sure if she was kidding, but I so was not kidding.  David already knows that if he stays with me, a corgi is in his future.  I'll ease him into the munchkin.

I'm having hot flashes.

Today's run:
Couch to 5K Week Eight, Day Two
2.86 miles/41:10

Remember when I was whining endlessly about how cold it was in Colorado?  I must have angered the gods because suddenly, it's a million degrees outside.  Hello summer!  What happened to your old friend spring?!  I got up this morning around 8:30 and thought I'd be fine.  I was incorrect.  It was already too hot for my pansy self, but I had some breakfast and got out the door by 9:30.  Let's be honest... my run was this all over again...

Only much sweatier.

I have a renewed respect for all the runners of the world who deal with insane temperatures, like this awesome girl, or... you know... the Kenyans.  And on top of it being a wee bit too hot for my taste, I also rushed out for the run way too quickly after breakfast, and thought I was going to have some serious issues partway through.  But that's enough whining.  I did it, I burned some calories and got some sunshine, and now I can relax in the air conditioning for a while.  Aaaaaaand... it helped that I immediately Googled "bad run" and read several articles about how every runner has bad days.  I'd be so depressed without the Internet.

On a completely different note, I was reading SkinnyRunner's latest post this morning, and was intrigued.  I definitely have an "everything is so amazing!" Facebook friend, who generally makes me ballistic with her status updates.  Don't get me wrong, I love seeing happy Facebook updates, happy blog entries, and happy people... but do you have to be happy all the time?!  

I think I fall pretty much on the other side of the spectrum with this blog.  I mean... you've seen the pictures I post of myself...

It ain't pretty, kids.

But I never want to be the Debbie Downer.  I might whine about my workouts sometimes (erm... nearly every day), but I'm still grateful for them.  And at the end of the day, even if my run sucked and I handle heat about as well as a polar bear, I have a great family, great friends, the most supportive boyfriend ever-of-all-time, and enough nail polish to keep me happy for eternity.

What do you think?  Would you rather interact with someone who reveals the good with the bad or a person who always sees everything through rose colored glasses?
I mean... if you're reading this... you clearly are okay with reading about my inability to wash my hair and resist Oreos, so you must be okay with mere mortals.

And speaking of my inability to wash things... while I am seriously loving the Mission skincare line, how the heck do you wash this stuff off?!!  I just spent a good half hour in the shower trying to get all of this sunscreen off my face, and my face is still sticky.  Also, I think I just found more of it behind my ears.  

So who wants to hang out with me today?!

It's alive! It's... ALIVE!

Frankenstein?  Maybe?  Kind of?  Okay, so I stop blogging for a few days and suddenly can't come up with any good titles.  Forgive me.  But I'm still alive!  And I felt like a really bad blogger for not posting anything for a few days and taking no nasty sweaty pictures of myself...

This is me feeling bad.  This is also a nasty picture, just not sweaty.  So it's part of the equation.  You're welcome.

But today, after feeling bad about myself all freaking day (more on that later) and thinking I was a blogging failure, I told myself to suck it up and POST SOMETHING ALREADY.

So here I am.  And yes, that is the color that my iSight camera currently thinks I am.  I'm a pretty girl.

So, catching up...
Saturday's run:
Couch to 5K Week Eight, Day One
3.0 miles/42:38

Today's workout:
Bob Harper fail and P90X Shoulders and Arms
494 calories/1:16:21

Saturday's run was another great trail run.  Not a whole lot to say about it - felt great to be outside, and I got out when it was still pretty cool out.  Apparently I'm just a trail runner - looking back on the last few weeks, all the runs that I felt great about were on the trail, and all the runs I felt iffy about were on a path near my house.  So now I'm looking into more trails to run, and possibly even some trail races.  Maybe I should get some trail running shoes?  You know I love a good excuse to buy shoes.

Today's workout was kind of an adventure.  As you know if you've been following my tirades about cross training, I'm kind of stumped on strength training.  I did P90X last summer and loved it, but since I want to focus on training for a half marathon for the next few months, I don't want to restart P90X completely and overtrain.  Plus, I felt I needed a break from it.  So I've been searching for alternatives, and thought I had struck gold when I came across Bob Harper's Pure Burn Super Strength.

With 85 reviews and an overall rating of 4.5 stars on Amazon, I thought this was a great idea.  It's advertised as an hour long full body strength routine, and people LOVE IT.  The Amazon reviews regularly say that it's a tough, but great workout, that it delivers great results, that Bob Harper is awesome... the reviews that won me over were from people who had done P90X and said that this workout was better and harder.

These people were all either lying through their teeth or total morons.

I hate this workout.  I got through 15 minutes of it before I was so irritated that I turned it off, apologized profusely for ever doubting P90X, and fell back into the supportive, rippling arms of this man.

You know the Bob Harper workout is annoying if I immediately saw Tony-loudmouth-Horton as refreshing.

Seriously.  Don't buy that Bob Harper workout.  And if you do want to buy it, buy it off of me.  Please.  Because I spent $15 on it at Barnes and Noble, and since I made the mistake of opening it, now I'm stuck with trying to peddle it on eBay.  I don't know why it got so many great reviews.  It's a chaotic workout - he gives you zero time to change weights, and maybe I'm just weird, but I like a different weight for squats, bicep curls, and shoulder presses.  My manly legs can handle more weight than my girly biceps.  But you don't have a spare second to change weights.  And good heavens, the editing of this thing!  If it was going for an Oscar, it might have a chance, but as a workout, it's crazy.  No joke, less than 15 minutes in, one of the girls on the side is grunting and grimacing, and they keep doing freeze frame shots of her scary faces in black and white.  I haven't seen overacting that bad since Tom Cruise went crazy on Oprah's couch.

But I digress.  So I did the P90X workout.  And felt like I was kind of going through the motions.  I burned about 400 calories, so it's not like I was wasting my time, I'm just kind of looking for something new.  

Which leads me to my question for the day:

Has anybody tried BodyRock?  Love it?  Hate it?  Indifferent?
I've seen her videos on YouTube before and came across the website this weekend for some reason and I'm intrigued.  I mean, who wouldn't be, look at that girl!  She's crazy hot!  I'd be okay with looking like that in a bikini, let's be honest.

Remember to tune in tomorrow for Triple Tangent Tuesday!  And I've still got a post I'm working on about the scale, which I plan on getting up tomorrow... I was newly inspired to finish it after reading this post from Cely at Running Off the Reese's.  

Sleep tight, fellow bloggers!

I did a 5K today!

Today's run:
Couch to 5K Week Seven, Day Three
3.16 miles/45:24

Okay, so it wasn't a race or anything... just me and my beloved Garmin.  But hey, I did a 5K!  Pretty exciting stuff.  Today's run was actually pretty lovely.  I got out earlier, which was good because not only did the wind kick up like crazy, but it got into the 90s today.  Gross.  I left Florida for a reason, universe... please remember that.

Anyway, I went out when it was still pretty cool outside, and when that intense wind was just a really refreshing breeze.  It did get pretty toasty by the end of the run, but just enough to give me a good sweat, which felt really wonderful today.  I did more walk-run-walk intervals, but spaced them out more today - for most of it, I ran for 4 minutes and then walked for one.  I had a lot of good energy today, so this really worked for me.  And the mantra for the day?  "What doesn't kill you only makes you stronger."  Not something I really say or think about often, but it came into my head and gave me a good push.  At one point, it kept me going up a very steep hill, so I was proud of that!

The reason for the extended mileage was that by the time I got back home at the end of the run, the Garmin said I had gone 2.94 miles.  And I thought to myself, "Well, that's dumb... it's a beautiful day and it feels great to be outside, why not make it a 5K?"  And it was a beautiful day and it did feel great to be outside, so I'm glad I did it.

Of course, then I went to Red Robin and ate a bacon cheeseburger, so I was glad to have burned the extra 20 calories.  I know they really made a dent in that lunch.

On a completely unrelated note, I'm working on a couple different blog entries that I swear I will have up soon - one speak da troof that is weight loss/weight maintenance related and one all about cross training. Whew!  I can hear all that excitement brewing.  Somewhere David just yawned and wondered why he dates someone who can walk into a running shoe store and immediately give descriptions of every Asics shoe in the joint.  And before you think I'm kidding, I did that today to my poor unsuspecting friend, Ross.  He thought he was just having lunch today.  Ha!  I showed him.

But that's about it for me.  I apologize for not having nasty sweaty pictures of myself for the day... for once I actually took a shower immediately after exercising!  I know, it's shocking.  I bet a few of you nearly choked reading that.  Forgive me.  But I realized that I hadn't actually washed my hair in almost a week, and that maybe that would be a nice gesture if I was going out in public.  With clean people.  

So instead, I will leave you with a few pictures to show off that I actually washed my hair today.  I did take off all my makeup and put on my rockin' glasses pre-photo shoot though, so rest assured that my lazy tendencies are intact and safe.

See?  See?  It's CLEAN!

Sending out a little love to all my fellow bloggers tonight.  You guys rock.

Happy National Running Day!

How many miles did you choose to celebrate with?  I decided to celebrate by... not running at all.  Um...

But I love you guys and sent everybody good running vibes all day!

Today's workout:
Fire 45 EZ (new to class option)
514 calories/54:30

I freaking love Turbo Fire.  I need to remember that amazing feeling I get during every cool down when I'm getting all grumpy pants about working out.  And I'm a big fan of burning 500+ calories in one workout because let's face it, I love me some eating.

Wednesday is technically a rest day for Turbo Fire, but since I haven't been following the specified schedule for a while now, I thought it would be better to do what felt good than stress over it.  After all, I spent most of my morning stressed out about exercise - I worked myself into an emotional frenzy, convinced that the only way I could be successful and get these irritating 10 pounds off was to be doing Body Pump again.  Please disregard the fact that I made more changes to my body in 3 months of P90X than in several months of doing Body Pump regularly... and that my muscles tend to respond far faster to high weight/low rep strength training than the low weight/high rep training of Body Pump.  So when my completely reasonable and not crazy emotional mom tried to gently suggest that maybe I should not drop $250 on a membership to a gym I didn't even want to belong to just so I could go to a class that I liked two years ago (with a different instructor and different people in the group, obviously)... I kind of lost it and spent several hours moping around.  I'll admit it.  It was a pouty princess moment.

By the by, Ms. Hilton's new show The World According to Paris debuted tonight.  I watched about 3 minutes of it out of a morbid curiosity.  Oh, how I wish I could have those minutes back.

So after I whined and moped and pouted (I swear, you guys, I am not always such a big baby about everything), I thought to myself, "Hey, self... pull it together.  So you made a promise that you'd do Power Pairs every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for a month, who cares?  Isn't it more important to get in a workout that you'll be happy with and excited about than to slave through some half-assed strength training just so you can whine about how much it sucked on your blog?"

I speak kindly to myself, I know.

Thus, Power Pairs was out and Turbo Fire was in.  And I have to brag a little... I was planning on doing Fire 30 just as a little quickie workout, but I have been wanting to try Fire 45 EZ because of one song in it.  A selection of the lyrics are as follows... ahem... "I'm a bad girl, break me like the law."  I can work with that.  So I tried it, and guess what, it might be my new favorite Turbo Fire workout!  It was an absolute blast, and despite not feeling energetic at the beginning, I managed to stay pretty pumped through the whole thing.  Now if I can just get that kind of energy to stick with me through tomorrow's run...

Fun giveaway!

This is just a quickie post to let you guys know about a giveaway going on over at Daily Vitamin F!  Kiley has an adorable blog - seriously, if you need a break from my sarcasm and whining, check her out.  While I'm complaining about my addiction to cake, she's posting about how much she's loving June already.  Adorable.

Her giveaway is also adorable - she makes shirts that say "running sucks" in custom color combos, completely to order, and she's giving away two of them!  You can choose from a crazy array of colors for both the shirt and the text.

See?  It's adorable!

In other, much more self-absorbed news, I woke up and thought "Gross, it's a weight training day."  When did this happen?!  I used to love weight training!  And then it hit me - I really miss Body Pump.  I miss Body Pump so much I'm considered joining a 24 Hour Fitness.  And I hate gyms.  Someone help me.

Triple Tangent Tuesday!

I know everyone loves it when I whine about how chubby I am and how crappy my runs are, but perhaps I should spice things up a bit sometimes... enter another Triple Tangent Tuesday!!

It's lucky that I can sing and act because I have zero artistic talent.  My stick figures are awkward.  There's actually only one thing that I can successfully draw that looks pretty, and it's really just a random doodle, but it looks cool.  It was on an Urban Outfitters catalog many years ago and I just copied it over and over until I finally had it down.

This is from 2005, and it's pretty much exactly the same to this day... I still doodle it in notebooks when I get bored.  Weirdly, now that I look at it, I realize that I actually tend to draw the little tail as curving to the left now, but that's the only significant change.

In case you think I'm kidding about my inability to draw things and not have them look like someone with a serious head injury made them, here is my horrendous attempt at "recreating" a painting for an art history class in college.  I remember this taking me hours... hence why I took a picture.  So I could remember the pain.  I'm masochistic like that.

Please.  Avert your eyes.

Speaking of singing (um, kind of)... my mom still really likes to tell the story of how she found out I had any vocal ability.  I actually didn't talk a lot as a kid, and while I definitely was never an introvert, I was usually a band kid, not a choir kid.  Freshman year of high school, unbeknownst to my parents, I had started writing poetry and even tried writing a couple songs.  When the drama department announced that they were putting on a talent show, I decided that I wanted to sing one of the songs I had written.  So I came home and told my mom, and this was pretty much the exchange:

Jessica:  I think I'm going to enter the talent show at school.
Jessica's mom:  What are you going to do?
Jessica:  I'm going to sing.
Jessica's mom:  You can sing?  What are you going to sing?
Jessica:  A song I wrote.
Jessica's mom:  You write songs?!!

As corny as it sounds, that talent show was the beginning of a serious blossoming for me, and even though it shocked everyone, I'm glad I learned I could sing!  It's a little unrealistic, but if I could someday make a career out of my voice, I would be the happiest little clam that ever was.  Not necessarily a record deal, but something.  Still figuring that out.

I knit... sometimes.  It kind of comes in waves, like many of my obsessions: I will knit every day for months, and then I kind of forget about it.  Like right now, I have a tank top on my needles that I don't think I touched for the entire month of May.  Actually, I feel bad writing that, so it looks like I've got some knitting to do tonight!  :)

I learned how to knit my freshman year of college... I had truly awful roommates (that's a story for another Triple Tangent Tuesday) and would pretty much use any excuse to get out of my room, and one of the professors started a little knitting club in my dorm, so I went.  The first thing I ever knit was a long scarf made of white acrylic yarn with silver sparkly tinsel in it.  It had a million mistakes, but I gave it to my mom because I knew she'd appreciate it, and she cried when she opened up the box I'd wrapped it in.  She never wears it, but she still has it, which makes me feel super loved.

I promise I learned how to knit much better after that and have knit all sorts of pretty things, including, but not limited to:

This shawl, which is a very cool, yet super simple pattern called the Boneyard Shawl by Stephen West.

This shrug, which is a variation on a lovely free pattern called the Ribbed Lace Bolero, using a different lace pattern called "Lacy Columns."

As well as another shrug based on the same pattern that I wore to my honors graduation ceremony.

I was pretty psyched about graduating.

And that, kids, is today's Triple Tangent Tuesday!  I hope you enjoy reading these... I'm really enjoying geeking out and writing them.  Especially since you all know how much I love to talk about myself.  It's kind of my thing.