24 July 2012

What I Eat

After a lot of consideration, I have decided to roll my gluten-free What I Eat blog into this one. Fitness and food go together, as well as food and culture in the places we visit and live. It's becoming difficult to run more than one blog, especially deciding which posts should go with food and which should go with other parts of my life. They should all go together!

I'll be leaving the blog up for reference and over the next few weeks I'll be reposting some of my favorite posts and links here at Where in the World Am I?. My gluten-free updates will still appear on Twitter and on my Facebook page.

23 July 2012

Motivation Monday -- Clearing My Head

My Pin of the week -- Olympic Fever!!
As I was trudging through the mud in the park yesterday morning I realized I need to re-evaluate a few things in my eating and fitness plan. I don't feel good, on a variety of different levels. I'm tired of the muddy paths and slippery roads. The rainy season won't be ending any time soon, though, so I need to start spending an afternoon or two on a treadmill. I feel like I never have any energy, so out with the cupcakes and alcohol (or, at least in much reduced quantities) and in with finding a juicer attachment for my blender and trying some green smoothies.

I was out attempting my long run on Sunday instead Saturday when I usually do them. At around four o'clock Friday afternoon the rain started and it was still going strong when my alarm went off on Saturday morning. I knew the roads would be a mess and the park would be even worse so I called a rain delay. The rain was still coming down at noon, so I started to worry about a rain delay on Sunday, too, thinking ahead to half a long run Monday morning outside and half on the treadmill Monday afternoon. But it finally stopped raining in the afternoon and stayed away for several hours so I continued with my plan for Sunday.

Muffin woke up screaming at 4:45 Sunday morning and Mike went to check on her. I dozed off for a few more minutes. When my alarm went off at five o'clock I was awakened out of a dream where I was trying to do something -- I don't know what -- with very little visibility. I woke up feeling very claustrophobic and unsure of myself. As I hit the street, in the dark with lots of cloud cover, the same feeling from my dream came back to me. I was freaked out. The rain had flooded the vacant lots so the new ponds were full of noisy frogs. Normally I like frog sounds, but they were adding to the creepiness of the morning. The roads were dry Sunday morning but it started to rain by the time I passed the first mile so I decided on just one trudge through the muddy park rather than the two laps I'd planned, cutting my distance in half.

Muffin woke up screaming at 4:45 again this morning and it was my turn to get her. It's just after noon now and I'm wrecked. It's hard to eat healthy when you're so tired. But while Muffin was at school this morning I sat in a coffee shop -- one that does not have wi-fi to distract me -- and did the bulk of the reading for my coursework this week. I also drank plain black tea instead of one of the sugary cold coffees I normally drink there. And I wrote out a grocery list after having looked at some green smoothie recipes yesterday. I'm going to try them with palak, the local spinach, and I think lots of mango or apple juice to make them sweet enough to go down. I'm taking advantage of the housekeeper this afternoon, having her do Muffin's lunchtime and nap so that I can catch a little snooze myself.

One running bright spot from the weekend: Mike got a pair of Vibram Five Fingers and Muffin calls them "Daddy's gecko feet." I also have the Olympics to look forward to. I've read that two sports channels on Tata Sky, our satellite service, will be showing India-centric events. I hope that means some track and field.

20 July 2012

Sewing Room Friday

Many people know that along with running and studying, I like to sew. It's often what takes a backseat when I'm too busy doing those other activities though. I've realized that if I don't watch as much television, cull my Google Reader to the blogs I actually enjoy reading, and spend more time doing rather than Pinning, I can actually get a lot of things done in a day. So, Sewing Room Friday. Friday afternoons are a good time because I strive to finish my weekly homework assignments on Friday morning and since I do my long runs on Saturday, I'm not running on Friday. Even if I'm only in there for an hour or two once a week, I can get some projects done.

Today while Muffin napped I dusted off my sewing table, threw some fabric in the washing machine, and traced out the Oliver + S Seashore Sundress pattern to make some party dresses for Muffin. She has her own birthday party coming up and a friend's party. I should be able to make two dresses in the next couple of weeks.

(Image from Fabric.com.)

16 July 2012

Motivation Monday

My Pinterest guilty inspiration for the week.
I’ve been slacking in my training. I have a ton of excuses… Mike was out of town, our housekeeper/baby-sitter needed time off, Muffin’s school was closed, I just didn’t feel like getting up early some mornings. I even skipped a long run a couple weeks ago. I have a mental block about going over ten miles. Part of it is mom guilt. My long runs are taking longer and Muffin is waking up immediately after I leave in the mornings. Saturday mornings are long and exhausting for everyone. Part of it is boredom with my running routes, but I have few choices. I’m trying to enjoy just being outside, but that doesn’t do it for me every day.

On Friday I was not running, not doing homework, and not eating properly to fuel for a Saturday long run. I was reading stupid inspirational quotes on Pinterest. But those stupid quotes got me up and out of the house Saturday morning because I felt guilty about wasting all that time and then not doing anything about it. Well, I did something. Whatever gets me out the door, right?

Instead of throwing in the towel on running, I think I’m going to sign up for a second half marathon, extending my training into September. Racing opportunities don’t come to Hyderabad often so I want to take advantage of as many races as possible to keep me motivated. As long as I don’t plan on breaking any records – which I don’t for the rest of my time here – I can plod along for thirteen miles twice, four weeks apart.

I’ve started up my online master’s classes again but I’m still finding some time for fun reading. I’m reading a lot of running and nutrition books, but I do love hiking adventures as well. I haven’t yet done my annual reading of Bill Bryson’s A Walk in the Woods but last month I read both Up: A Mother and Daughter’s Peakbagging Adventure and Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail. I’d love to do some hiking adventure like that some day. But for the time being, I’m planning on Muffin and me and 25 Walks in Rhode Island. My parents had the book when I was growing up; I ordered a used copy from Amazon for about five dollars so I can start thumbing through it for ideas.

Which brings me to my next piece of news. Next year, we will be taking a short hiatus from overseas life and spending a year in Rhode Island. I think Muffin and I can handle twenty-five walks during that time. She loves the outdoors and I’m looking forward to sharing my childhood stomping grounds with her. I’m also looking forward to walks on the beach, road races, kayaking, and all the comforts of home. I really wanted to stay overseas longer before heading back to the United States, but Rhode Island for a year won’t be so bad.

While I'm out running the city here and feeling down, I'm trying to focus on my twenty-five walks with Muffin next year.