Monday, January 26, 2009

Not quite ready for prime time

I received a FB Message from former XC Relay Teammate, Joe L, asking me to join him and our other teammate Doug F on Wednesdays for some camaraderie and a group run. Now, Joe, Doug, and I are all...well, we're Clydesdales. Of course, I a bit more of a Clydesdale than those guys. :) Anyway, at first I was psyched at the opportunity to have someone to run with one night a week. I don't think though that I can hang with those guys just yet with my pace.

When I got to the park, I said to myself, if I can run < 15:00 pace for 3 miles, then maybe I could at least muster a 13 or so pace with those guys for a mile or so and then peel off. I felt great after a mile and was comfortably holding right around 15:10 pace. Around mile 1.3, I just crashed, totally ran out of juice. I managed with some walking to finish my 3 in good fashion and averaged ~15:50 for the run.

I definitely need to step up my nutrition, starting with a more robust breakfast. 1 cup of Special K and a cup of skim milk ain't gonna cut it. I ended up ~1000 calories below my target today and my target is about 1500 calories below my BMR. Trying to tackle a good, hard 3 mile run on a 2500 calorie deficit just ain't smart.

Regardless of the nutrition, I'm not quite ready for primetime with my running and not ready to run with the big dogs, I don't think. And to think, I was thinking about accepting the invitation to coach PIM. I think I may go in as a participant this Spring and then coach next Fall. Still, If I can drop another 25 lbs and get my runs down in the 14's in the next 6 weeks, I may be more inclined to coach. We shall see.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Vic is...

I've been spending most of my internet time on Facebook so I haven't posted to the blog what seems like a looooong time. I've been a busy bee with getting my business organized for 2009 and with work and with taxi service and with household stuff and with Junior High ministry and with... I'm ashamed to report that my miles for the week of 19-25 January are 0. That's a big, fat GOOSE EGG. It's smart to have a cutback week every now and then but this was ridiculous. And when I ain't running good, I ain't eating good. It wasn't a total relapse but I didn't move forward either. I'd say just about even on the eating, logging, and my exercise.

I'm definitely back to it this week. No excuses. It's hard not to be disheartened when I have these little setbacks. We're studying in Bible Study how the Christian life is about steps, not leaps, and that to grow and become what God wants us to be is about a step. I was sharing with my JHigh'ers that we can't expect to just wake up one morning and be everything God wants us to be. God wants us to just take that one step. For some it's being kind to someone who isn't kind back. For others it's just getting up a little early and reading one verse from The Bible and praying for one minute. For some, it's just believing that God is real. Whatever step you take, take it, and celebrate the faith that God gives us all to take that step. So, as I look at my struggles with weight and living a healthy life, I'm reminded that I'm not going to wake up tomorrow and weigh 200 pounds and run a marathon. Maybe my first step is to wake up Monday morning at 4 and run before work. Maybe my next step is to make sure I have a healthy snack before leaving work for the drive home so I won't be so hungry and stop where I shouldn't. I've gotta start thinking more in terms of steps and not leaps.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Unplanned Tempo Run

The plan after work tonight was to get in an easy peasy 3 mile loop, just to get in some easy miles after Saturday's 5 miler and to start the week off right. Unfortunately, I'm on call but that didn't stop me from attempting a run. I got to the park, got dressed, got stretched and headed out without being bothered. With pager in hand, I kept a nice, comfortable pace through 1 mile.

Then, I heard that NIGHTMARISH sound. BEEP! BEEP! BEEP! I really didn't have time to think about how irritated I was. I just turned around and headed back, knowing that I at least had a chance of making it back to the car before the issue was escalated to my boss. Once an issue is created, it pages the on call person. I then have 15 minutes to change the status of the ticket to "Work In Progress" (we say WIP it) or it gets escalated. And it usually takes a minute or two from the time it's created to the time I receive the page. So, I figured I had between 14 and 13 minutes to get back.

Being the experienced runner that I am (wink, wink), I remembered from back in the day what tempo pace felt like. Like coach Steeeve says, it's the effort where your not gasping for air but if you ran any faster, you would be. I was able to hold that pace all the way to the car. No letting up. I felt strong all the way through. I just relaxed my shoulders and focused and just thought about NOT STOPPING!!! It brought back some non-so-pleasant yet welcome memories of when I was fit and strong and had stamina. It was a great feeling and motivates me now to get back to that place and even surpass it.

So, I made it to the car. I got my cell phone and, breathing pretty hard, called the support center and asked them to WIP the ticket for me. I asked if it had been escalated and Stephanie said no, it had not been escalated. Mission accomplished. I walked a lap around the track which served as a mini-cool down and headed for the house. Well, first I called the customer and resolved her issue. So, my 3 mile easy peasy turned into a little tempo run and my career as an Clinical Application Analyst is safe.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Split Decision

After a late start this morning, I debated whether to run or not. I had a "long" run of 4 miles on the training schedule but once I got up and hung with the fam for a couple of hours, the day was starting to get away from me. We have basketball my mom was taking us out to lunch. I need to do bills. We need to do some Pampered Chef stuff. Anyway, I entertained the thought of running this evening but I knew if I put it off, it was a pretty good chance it wouldn't happen. So, I did what every Big Loser should do, I got my booty out the door and got 'er done.

Driving to the park, I decided I was going to do a "commitment" run. That's what I call and out and back run where there are no shortcuts and no chances to cut the run short. It's just out and back. I knew if I stayed on the Mem Park loop, I'd pass the car at 3 miles and have the opportunity to cut it short. So, I decided to run to the Allen Parkway water fountain and back.

When I got to Memorial, it was nice to "go left" out of the park. I don't know why but "going left" makes me feel like I'm really running and that I'm on a bit of an adventure. You know, it's "out there". Like Elvis has left the park. Anyway, when I got to the light at Crestwood, I got to thinkin':

1) If I'm gonna run this slow, I may as well run trails.
2) It's kind of windy out "on the road", I may as well run trails.
3) I'm running alone anyway, so why not run alone on Ho Chi Minh

So, I calculated all the options in my head and made a split decistion to go off into the woods. It was just a beautiful run. I really enjoyed the solitude, the quiet. All I could hear was my breathing, the crunching of pine needles under my feet, oh, and a little bit of traffic on Memorial Drive. The only problem was that there wasn't enough mud.

My route stretched my scheduled 4 in to 4.4 but I finished strong and felt great. That last .5 mile came in at <15:00 pace. Boy, after this run, I really felt like I had run. It felt good. And 4.4 this week makes 5 next Saturday seem not so forboding.

Friday, January 09, 2009

The big secret

Well, I thought since I finally got the e-mail we've been waiting on, I'd go ahead and spill the beans on the big secret. It's sort of bittersweet because we thought the news would be just a little more positive.

Anyway, we have been approached by a production company to do a TV show about...well, about our family and our struggles to lose weight and be healthy in today's busy, helter-skelter world. Through each episode (yes, that's right. We're going to be a series), they bring in a different "expert" to help us along the way to reach our goals and shed the pounds. So, we'll probably have all our meals delivered, personal trainers, gym memberships, who knows what all? Then each episode chronicles our journey. So, basically, we get all this incredible advice and help and basically get to change our lives and hopefully inspire a few people along the way. They want to pitch the show to all the big networks, NBC, ABC, TLC, and some others so it's going to be a nationally broadcast show.

We've gone through several steps and just this last Monday overnighted some video footage of me and the family. The first hour was the Casting Director doing an interview with us, talking about our family and what we do for fun, our eating habits, our struggles with trying to lose, etc. Then we did an hour of other footage. Private, "tell-all" testimonials recorded in the closet, some footage of us all playing outside, me trying to fit into my mom's Lexus, and some other stuff.

So, the casting director finally got finished watching the tapes this afternoon and e-mailed us back. She loved us and thinks we'd be great. She is going to put her "pitch" together for the rest of her team and present us to them next week. The "only thing" is she's worried that they're going to say that the whole family is not overweight. She thinks they're looking for a family where the whole family is overweight and Steph and Ben are not. But she's going to "do her best" to make the sale.

Then, at the end of her e-mail, she said, "I also have another idea for you guys that I will discuss with you!" What's that all about? Oh, man, I can't stand it. I just want to know yes or no. We've been excited about this since mid-December we sooooo want to do it.

Well, if it works out, it works out. It's very exciting to know we may get all this help. I thought the news would be 100% positive and we could say that the decision's been made but of course, it's just going to be dragged out and there's just gotta be uncertainty, huh? We'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

The best intentions

Yesterday was a bust on getting my run in. No worries as it's early in the week and my schedule allows me to move Monday's run over to Tuesday without disrupting the rest of the week. So, I got to bed early last night and set the alarm for 4 am. I was VERY excited about how everything just came together as planned. I got the clothes ironed, the bag packed. I had breakfast and some water. READY!!! Then I stepped out the door and realized I FORGOT TO CHECK THE WEATHER. So, long story short, I got to work REAL early.

That means I'll be leaving work REAL early. Yipee!!! I've got to get to the park, get my run in, and be home by the season premier of The Biggest Loser. We'll all be gathered 'round the TV at 7 with our chili dogs and fritos, watching The Biggest Loser. Ha!!! Just kidding. Bob and Jillian would KILL me!

One of the forums I frequent opens a thread during every episode of The Biggest Loser and we all virtually watch it together. I've never participated but I think I will tonight. Or not. I don't know.

So, today or tomorrow, I should know more about The Big Secret. I hope to be able to make an announcement here and on Facebook Thursday or Friday. I so wish I could spill the beans but it would just be too disappointing if it doesn't all pan out. Of course, if it doesn't all pan out, I'll still let the world know what could have been and it's going to be disappointing for all of us anyway.

Back to work.

Saturday, January 03, 2009


Why is stuff cooked in butter so much better than not?

I breaded some scrumptious chicken breasts and had one under penne pasta and marinara. I cooked half the batch of chicken just dry with nothing in the skillet, just the breaded chicken. It formed a nice crust and frankly wasn't half bad. But I did the last two breasts in about a tbsp each of butter and olive oil. Oh, my!!! The golden crust was soooooo good. Can you tell which is which?

I only had a bite. I'll save that for J or the kids.

I just want to know WHY???

Friday, January 02, 2009

New Year's Life's Resolution

Yes, there is much adieu around the water cooler about New Year's Resolutions. I for one am tired of making New Year's Resolutions. Even worse, for me, it's usually New Week's Resolutions, or New Day's Resolutions. This year, I think I'm going to make a few New Life's Resolutions.

Once and for all, for the rest of my life, I am resolved to lose this 100 pounds that had been dragging me down for so long. I know. I know. We've all heard Vic say this before and with much conviction but I just wonder if I don't do this now, in 2009, if I'll ever, ever do it. I've got this sick feeling that if I don't make this stand right now, I'm never going to. NOW IS THE TIME!!!

Once and for all, for the rest of my life, I am resolved to be a man of God. No more playing church. No more playing Christian while my devotional life, my prayer life, and my ministry are relegated to some back room where I peek in now and then just to be able to say I have SOME relationship with Christ.

Once and for all, for the rest of my life, I am resolved to bring happiness and peace to my home. I will serve my children with love and compassion and pray for them every day. I will make our home a refuge from this world, a place where my wife finds peace and where she knows she is loved.

These are my New Life's Resolutions.