Is The Question How, or Why?

People often ask me how do I stay/get into the shape I’m in — But most of the time my gut tells me they’re really asking why?  I say this because when I give a brief explanation of my workouts and diet their follow-up question is; “Isn’t that hard?” along with I could never do that!

The sad thing is most of these people are younger than I am and for the most part could very easily do what I do. They choose not too, because in their mind it’s hard to exercise, to not eat what they want when they want. They’ve settled for what they believe is their lot, destiny or genetics. Perhaps they’re waiting for a magic pill, app, exercise that will transform them into who they were 10, 15 or 20 years ago. This is why the diet and fitness industry rakes in billions every year from these individuals who want an easy way…

THERE IS NO EASY WAY! With that said here is the answer to why I do what I do; I was blessed with a healthy body, and a good mind.  I’m a believer in caring for everything that is mine and keeping it as close to the original condition as possible. Whether it is a car, running shoes, books, my business or my cats. So why wouldn’t I do that with my body? Exercising, eating healthy, meditation, yoga, getting out in nature, avoiding the news, and having goals are a few of the ways I get and try to keep myself fit and healthy.

Believe me I wish I could eat everything I fancied and sleep late on Sundays instead of running 10 miles. I also fall off the rails and indulge now and again. Take yesterday for instance; I went out to lunch with my brother and sister-in-law for chowder and clam-cakes while I enjoyed eating those three clam-cakes the result was I felt stuporous and bloated and required a nap. This morning I was a pound heavier. That was motivation to get back to the gym and to my healthy diet today!

Here is my why question to those who think they couldn’t do what I do ( assuming they are healthy enough) “are you worth it”?  I believe I am, I deserve to feel and look good to do what I enjoy free of knee and back pain caused by being over weight. I believe in preventing type two diabetes, high blood pressure, and the myriad of preventable disease conditions due to neglecting the care and maintenance of this 60 year old body. I believe in being in the best shape I can be if I should contract a disease I can’t prevent.

I’ll close with one more question, would you live in a toxic dump? Then why treat yourself like one?

Sorry to be so blunt but you sort of asked why?

Ginnie

 

Liar Liar…

We all hate being lied to — So why do we lie to ourselves?

My name is Ginnie and this is my latest confession; I lied to myself when I believed you got a puffy lower belly at a certain age. I deceived myself into thinking clothes sizes were running smaller. I told a whopper when I convinced my self walking on a treadmill and lifting twice a week was “working out”. I fooled myself into thinking just because I was in my normal weight range I was healthy… I LIED!

This realization happened yesterday when I ran to work from my mechanic’s, after dropping my car off — My employee said , “That was fast”. Then it hit me not only did I make this 2 mile – ish trek back in decent time It was fairly easy — Even with the large hills! Heck Sunday’s eight miles wasn’t nearly as bad as some 5k’s I ran last year. I’m fitting in my smallest sizes with ease. My body composition has changed and so has my mindset.

I can still push myself even at 60, slogging is far more productive for me than walking, watching what and when I eat matters! I’m getting into good shape at 60, with less hormones, less time and more responsibilities than I ever had before. Why I hear myself asking? Because on a whim in January I decided to do a half marathon in October. I set a goal and I’m following through with it I, may lie to myself but I don’t lie to others. I need to do what I said, slog the talk if you will.

I’m not writing this to boast, or to lecture, this is my journey, my discovery, my confession, but if the running shoe fits?

 

Ginnie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Strides Down Memory Lane

Today’s long run took me to where it all began…

This morning I decided to head west out of my driveway toward the bike path (I’d grown weary of the hills of my usual run) and headed toward Barrington. I couldn’t help but laugh to myself and at myself while running behind the Barrington shopping center — You see this is where I first started to run.

Prior to 1991 the only running I did were “errands” and “late”. That all changed after I found out the third day of my black belt test would have a run. The run would start on the newly paved East Bay bike Path behind the shopping center to the Barrington YMCA then through the woods of Veterans Park. While running there would be obstacles and martial art techniques that had to be employed on hidden attackers. My friend and I would drive to Barrington several times a week to practice the route and to get into “running” shape!

After my black belt test I continued to run sporadically until I decided to run my first 5k. this happened in 2000 I remember training and hating every minute of it until the day of the race when I fell in love with the running community and its’ comradery and passion. I decided my next challenge was to be the Newport Pie Run, a 5 mile race. I bought a white long sleeve shirt and had all my martial art students sign it, to keep me from chickening out! I ran the Pie Run for about eight to ten years before I had to quit to help my mother with Thanksgiving preparations.

In 2010 I got a couple of friends and students to do the CVS 5k with me most of them quit running it years ago except for my friend Carol and me we’ve run/slogged/walked every year since! We both love it and celebrate it like a holiday. I’ve run a few other 5k’s each year but this year I’ve taken on the challenge of running a half marathon — Hence my long run training that brought me back to the beginning.

Martial art has changed my life in so many ways; Running is just one of them. Which is why I smiled and said a prayer of gratitude while running on the bike path toward the YMCA today, still making strides…

Ginnie

Steps I’ve Taken

Here are a few things I’ve tried, noticed and or other general observations during my first six weeks of half marathon training.

Let me begin by saying it’s been a good five to six years since I’ve done any “serious” running training. I’ve slogged a couple of miles a week and have run a few 5k’s a year — That was until I got the “bright idea” to run a half marathon at 60!

The first thing I did was to research how I could do this safely and with the least amount of stress to my body and have fun doing it. I found Chi Running by Danny Dreyer, and downloaded his Chi Walking and Running videos, and bought his  Chi Marathon book. While the transition from my former duck slogging style (I have a foot that splays out) to the Chi Walking and then Chi Running concepts have been an adjustment they are as advertised I’m up to seven miles with very little issues and I’m hoping to keep it that way. I’ll admit I’m walking as well as slogging, but my slogging is increasing – My goal isn’t to win the race but just to finish before the sun sets! I find the half marathon training regime to be easy to follow and not at all stressful. I’m able to maintain my martial arts and weight training regimes as well.

One of the items I’ve used in conjunction with the Chi Running/walking training is a metronome. I admit it wasn’t easy to use at first and it harkened me back to my traumatic band experience of trying to stay in step! That said it has helped me find a tempo that I can maintain without taxing my body. Another I can’t live without (okay I can live without it but would hate to) is my Apple Watch. I love the feed back while I’m working out it’s helped me maintain a good training heart rate so I’m not slogging at an anaerobic pace. Plus it logs all my stats. A new little item I’m using is the “Flip Belt” I love it. It carries my keys, phone, a water bottle and anything else I’ll need during training or in a race – You forget its there!

Nutritionally I’ve eliminated junk and have been eating clean, the least amount of processed food possible. One thing I highly recommend is Zeal by Zurvita an all in one nutritional drink that is a synergistic blend of whole food concentrates. It is Gluten free, Vegan and Kosher. I use Zeal twice a day and it helps energize me through my runs and refuels me mid afternoon. (Contact me for further information) If you are interested.

What’s changed? I’m down eight lbs I feel great my body is in the best shape it’s been in at 60! I love having a goal, and inspiring others. There are many more steps before this all culminates sometime on October 8th, my hope is that I continue to make progress, remain healthy, learn something while enjoying the process – Baby Steps…

Ginnie

Back With Both Feet

I haven’t disappeared completely out of the blog -a-sphere – I’ve been blogging fairly regularly on 60newthings (my attempt at trying 60 different things before turning 60). With that said the thought occurred to me yesterday (ironically while running on the treadmill) that I haven’t posted anything here in quite sometime — 15 months to be exact. So I decided to jump back in with both feet! I redid the place what do you think? I love the lovely header photo. Don’t you just want to run on this beach? What about the new warm color scheme? I may use this scheme at my martial art school… Enough about the site’s face lift now its time to give you a few of my thoughts from my treadmill jaunt…

First let me begin by saying over the past year or so there hasn’t been a whole lot of running — Just running around. We’ve all been there, work, family, commitments, and more of the same… I’ve continued to work out during this time at gyms, cross training with cycling, yoga and of course my bread and butter martial arts. I did one 5k last year the CVS in Providence (an awesome event try and run it or walk it one day). However steady running wasn’t in the cards. I’m hoping to turn the page. I’m finally 100% okay 95%… No upper respiratory issues, no hip impingement, no back problems ect , ect…

Since I joined Planet Fitness this past April I feel excited about getting into not just maintaining physical shape. The atmosphere at the Somerset Ma, facility is uplifting and inviting. In fact so much so that it inspired me to blog about it and to do it here! I love that there are people of all ages and in various stages of fitness, that everyone is willing to encourage each other — There are some gym rat  body builder guys but they are kept on a short leash with the lunk alarm! Everyone gets along to move along (maybe the conventions should’ve been held at a gym) . I digress.  These past months I’ve been inspired to challenge my self with new workout routines, using new cardio equipment, being more diligent about stretching, I’ve started to gain muscle mass along with more flexibility therefore more running stamina. I’ve taken new steps toward losing a few unwanted pounds using the Pro Tracker app, which is a very cheap version of WW! I’ve lost 2.5 lbs in a week. I’m looking at apps to start training for longer distances and registering for a couple of more races. I’m not trying out for the Olympics but I’m hoping one of my 60 new things might be a run longer than a 5k and I live to write about it!

So my advice to you is don’t wait to get fit, everyday counts, you’ll feel better, look better and hopefully inspire others to do the same!

Great to be back, gotta run!

Gin

Oh, That’s Where…

It amazes me when the spirit and the person finally link up – I believe these are what Oprah refers to as “Ah-ha moments.” I experienced one of those yesterday. Ironically not in deep thought or meditation but, after arguing with the Sync System on my Ford Focus. When I finished shouting (which doesn’t work with computers, another Ah-ha moment) and settled back into driving I thought about the previous weekend. How I enjoyed Carolyn Myss, and how amazed I was to find out that she discovered spirituality at age eight. Then I recalled cleaning my closets and all the pictures, letters, and journals I revisited. Then it hit me (not another car) My Ah-ha!

Joyce Amaral, at a retreat sometime in the early 70’s she started me on my path to spirituality! Although Joyce was extremely devote (she became a nun) it was her spirit and her light that attracted me to the bigger picture – to seek my soul’s purpose.

Sadly Joyce died of Leukemia at a very young age, and I didn’t stay the straight and narrow Roman Catholic course. Eventually I was drawn to the Eastern philosophies and found they were a better fit for my soul’s curriculum. However I shall always be grateful to Joyce, for starting me on my path and I’m excited to finally realize where my souls searching began…

FYI the Sync is still out of Sync in a Focus of all things! How’s that for ironies!

 

Ginnie

For-Get-Me-Nots

For most people for get me nots are a flower. If you are plus fifty they’re sticky notes, scraps of paper, and any other way to remind you – Not to forget!

I remember in school having a button on my backpack that said, of all the things I miss, I miss my mind the most! Little did I know that simple saying would be true! Losing your ability to remember is insidious – You barely realize it, then you can’t remember when you could remember. First you do word searches, not the puzzles, but mental searches. You stand there with your eyes rolled into the back of your head like you’re searching a dark closet until you find the word. If you’re with a group of fifty somethings word search turns into Jeopardy. When you know the meaning but can’t recall the word and your friends assist with the word search. This sometimes can be played out as twenty questions or charades. If you can’t remember the word or meaning, but  you can recall something similar.

There are all sorts of supplements and vitamins that can assist with this type of memory issue. The only problem is remembering to take them! So far the best thing that’s come along for the” loss generation” is the iphone 4 s! You ask it to remind you to do something, schedule your appointments,or how to spell a word and voila it does it for you! Thank you Apple! The only problem is forgetting where you left your iphone!

 

Which reminds me, did I charge mine?

Ginnie