Monday, June 2, 2014

Monday Mix Tape

Happy June everyone! Hard to believe another month has gone by already! It was a month full of milestones!

I just had my 16 month follow up with my surgeon and he's obviously very proud. He said "you weigh 121 pounds. I have nothing to add!" :) SO happy to finally have a photo with him!


2 days later I stepped on the scale and weighed 120. 130 pounds lost.  5lbs. PAST my goal!! For anyone that's worried that I'm not going to stop, I am. It would be fun to see the teens even for a minute but I'm perfectly happy where I am. At this weight, even a pound or 2 makes a difference in my running speed which is fun to play with.

I'm running so much right now getting ready for my next half marathon (less than 3 weeks!) it's not hard to lose a few pounds just from that. I'm eating more avocado (which are so good this year) and more peanut butter to keep my calories up on those 1,000 calorie burning long runs.


Speaking of running, and milestones, I earned this badge on the nike for the first time EVER. 112 miles in a month.


I can't promise I will always be running that much, especially in the heat of the summer, but I sure felt great about it. Awesome weather was a huge help

I'm still coaching my Peachtree Road Race trainees and they are doing an awesome job. We went 5 miles on a humid Saturday morning and none of them complained. As a reward, I led the stretching with some bananas balanced on my head. I've got to try to keep it fun :)

Speaking of fun, now that I'm done losing weight I decided it was time for 2 firsts - my first trip to a boutique and my first pair of designer jeans.

I was afraid of the price and the weird sizing by waist but the girl who helped me was SO nice and brought me about 10 pairs to try. They just don't look like they will ever fit and then they do. I will probably always find that weird when the zip just zips with no struggle at all.
I ended up with "7 for all mankind" brand but it was a showdown with the AG brand. They are so comfortable and worth every penny because they fit like a dream and I don't have to keep pulling them up :)

 I think the 26 waist sizing converts to a 2?!?!

 Luckily I had a dinner date with BFF (90 pound co-worker if you read my blog in the early days!) and I got to wear my fancy pants and the shirt I bought too! She's 6 months pregnant and I couldn't resist the headphone bib as one of her many gifts :)


Sunday morning I decided I wanted to ride my bike instead of going to yoga so I got back on it for the first time in 130 pounds.

Absolutely amazing experience. I had SO much fun and we rode 5 miles spontaneously. That to me is the best part of my my new life.


And because I know you want to know, the renovation is coming along. I had to test the strength of my new kitchen door header!

Have a happy, healthy week everyone!!!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Monday Mix Tape - Catching up!

I know, I know it's been FOREVER but honestly I'm just enjoying living my life so much there's not much time left to write about it.

I was worried about what would happen when I got to this point - I thought I might start gaining weight back, or feeling sad that people are used me now and the constant compliments are dwindling. None of that is the case. I saw 123 on the scale the other day which is the lowest ever and I'm thrilled I don't have to field so many questions about my weight loss anymore - I just get compliments on my outfits :) Smalls are officially a bit big so I'm wearing xs and xxs in some cases. I'm about to go replace last summers size 2 skinny jeans with a 0. Never in a million years did I expect I was this small underneath an entire me worth of fat.

One of THE BEST things I have done is becoming a coach for Atlanta Track Club. Every Saturday morning I work with a group training for the Peachtree Road Race (worlds largest 10k here on 4th of July!). I was a trainee in this group at 250 pounds and I seriously thought I would die on my first day. Now I'm coaching this group of amazing people who are working SO hard. I can't even wrap my head around that most of the time.

I have my days but for the most part, maintenance has been easy. I would probably not be saying that if I wasn't running 30 miles a week because I can pretty much eat whatever I want now and if it wasn't for all that activity, I would certainly be putting weight back on. I can totally see how this can fall apart for people at this stage but I think I've managed to find a really good balance which is all I ever wanted....ever!

I'm going to leave you with some photos since I just think that's way more interesting than me blah blah blahing about it. I've said it before and I'll say it again. I freaking LOVE my new life!

Facebook ad photo for the hospital that did my surgery. I love all my race bling :)

This is what I call my "urban marathon" - running home from the pub with a cupcake and a latte.

House construction is progressing....
which has left us with 1/4 of a new deck....
which is great for neighbors....
and cocktails!
But all that fun must be earned with racing...
and sweating... (this was my #bostonstrong selfie)
and eating healthy 90% of the time...
and always training for my next half marathon!
Being a coach means (hopefully) giving back some of the joy that running and weight loss has given me. Shout out to the East Lake In Training for Peachtree Coaches!
All that yoga has come in handy as I'm the leader of the stretching!! :)

Friday, March 21, 2014

13.1 v2

Hi y'all! In case you are wondering where I've been, I was here
My BEAUTIFUL 2nd home town of Sarasota, Florida. I got up early enough on Saturday to have the beach to myself before spring break exploded! The ONLY bad thing about traveling for a race is my no alcohol the day before the race policy. I happily drank water and even did some yoga and a plank on the beach.
plank selfie!

nervous about "runners knee" but it ended up being fine!
The next day I got up at 5am for the 7am race. Luckily my hotel was 3/4 a mile from the start and I didn't have to sit in the already huge line of traffic. I just ran there!

The scenery and the fresh sea air make one wonder why anyone would want to run anywhere but here...
This was a tough race. It was hot and it was flat except for the bridge and by mile 8 I had a cramp in my calf that just wouldn't quit. I just slowed down and enjoyed the scenery - actually stopping to stretch my calf at water stops instead of running through and spilling water all over myself! 
Representin' the Atlanta Track Club

I knew I had friends at mile 12 cheering me on so that kept me going! 
meeting my pal otis with one mile to go!
And then it was done! 2 hours 26 minutes later and my 2nd half marathon was in the books!
my sister met me with flowers!

The best thing about Florida races - beer tent!

So I had about 7 beers (no joke) and walked back to my hotel (luckily!) The race was still going on so traffic was backed up for miles. I just walked by all the stopped cars with my giant bouquet of flowers and a muffin and pretended it was my own personal parade :)

I had a wonderful time and am already registered for next year - I can't resist the half price sales they have the day after a race!

I was really sore for days and haven't run in a week but I'm back to yoga this afternoon and will just to an "easy 10k" tomorrow to ease back in. My next race half marathon is in June in Duluth Minnesota - stay tuned for more on that!!

Traveling for half marathons is awesome. I ate and drank whatever I wanted and came back a pound lighter. I think I'm going to try to knock off another 5 pounds before the next race but we'll see. I'm enjoying this wonderful balance I've found. Not "dieting" is weird but boy do I love it!

Have a happy healthy, weekend everyone!

Monday, March 3, 2014

One Year Later (and then some!)

I know it's been way too long since I've posted and I want to say thank you to all who reached out to me to make sure I was okay. I'm fine. In fact better than fine. I think the reason it took me so long to write this post is the simple fact that I wanted to live with being at my goal for a little while before I wrote about it -- I really had no idea what to expect!

 I did survive this
and this 2 weeks later

 We didn't have it nearly as bad as the rest of the country but it was obviously pretty serious here. I sure picked a crappy first winter as a runner!

I was scared to death when I got to my goal weight but I'm finding a great balance of working out and adding back in some of my favorite foods in absolute moderation. Pizza is to be treated with respect and only had about once a month. I can only eat 2 tiny pieces now but it's the satisfaction that never ceases to surprise me about this surgery. I'm not sure I ever knew what it was like to feel full and satisfied instead of stuffed and sick and still wanting more. I'm not sure if this is what happens to everyone who has this surgery but it's the thing I'm most thankful for - that the obsession is going away and what I eat leaves me happy and not wanting more and more. Don't get me wrong though - after Christmas it was hard to back away from the cookies because I can still get hooked on the sugar just like the old days!

I'm still running and doing yoga and training with my trainer and all that good stuff. I work out about 6 days a week and have to sometimes force myself to take a day off! 

I've had a few great races so far this year and many more to come. 
This is me finishing the Tartan Trot - my very first under and hour 10k. 59:55! I almost barfed at the top of "Pipers Peak" so don't let this glamor shot fool you.
New Years Day resolution run with my friends and running heroes!

In less than 2 weeks I'll be traveling to Sarasota Florida for my 2nd half marathon. I just did a 12 mile training run on Saturday and I swear it was almost easy. I hate even putting that in writing because I don't want to jinx it! The plan is to do a half in all 3 of my home states so the final leg of the "Tait Tri-State Challenge" will be in Duluth, MN in June along the shores of lake superior. Both of these races will I'm sure smell a lot less like pee than my first half through the streets of the ATL :)

So I've been bouncing around 124, 125, 126. I'm a XS and a 2. Once I get my excess stomach skin removed one day I will be one of those b*tches who's wears a zero!? We will talk about the skin in it's own post as I think it's a concern for a lot of people (and frankly, way worse than I thought it would be) but I think I've lost as much weight as I'm going to. I've stopped trying anyway and will continue to eat healthy 95% of the time. 

I feel like this is how it was always supposed to be - I've always had this burning desire to be an athlete and that's exactly what I've become. I'm so proud of myself for making this happen and never realized just how profoundly that could affect my whole life.

Plenty more to come as I've been missing my blog and writing so much during the crazy busy times but I'm going to leave you with my 1 year photos. As much as I respected that girl in the first few photos, I don't miss her at all!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Monday Mix Tape

Hi! It's been a while since I've done a Monday post!

My weekends have turned into just another part of the work week lately - I still try to make time for the weekend-y things I like to do which leaves very little time for the weekend-y things I HAVE to do. Plus the weather has been so wacky it's really hard to plan much in advance!
Saturday I did a freezing cold (22 degrees) 6 miler with a good friend followed by a yummy, warm breakfast. I'm starting to enjoy making plans with friends to run. I'm not a talker and I listen to music when I run but it's still nice to have someone to meet and hold you accountable - especially in the dead of the coldest winter we've had since the 70s. *disclaimer for my northern friends - the cold - it's all relative and I know that y'all have it way worse and I think of you every time I'm out there shivering. Chicago is my favorite city in America and there's a reason I don't live there :)
Cold run on the Atlanta Beltline! Shoutout to Darin :)

Sunday I emptied out my closet for what I'm hoping will be the last time. Both my sisters are making out BIG on this round. I'm officially a 2 or a 4 depending on the brand and an XS on top. I'm not planning on getting much smaller than that and it's nice to buy things now I know I will have for a while. I did find this gem while I was at it....
I wish I had put some makeup on but this is REALITY people!
This shirt is from the 3rd grade - an homage to our championship men's and women's high school basketball team in Little Falls, MN. I remember getting it like it was yesterday - the iron on letters were a new thing back then! Luckily my mom held onto it all these years and gave it to me a few years ago - I'm sure never intending for me to fit into it!

This morning was absolutely gorgeous out so I took advantage and did my standard neighborhood 10k route. I'm going that distance every other day right now and it's just amazing to me that running for a solid hour is "normal" now. I chose the worst winter to become a runner but it might have just toughened me up a little (*see disclaimer). Stuff that already hurts just hurts more in the cold and the constant nose running and spitting is not the part of the lululemon clad, bouncy ponytail, runner chick image I like to maintain :)

So today in the high 50s and tomorrow is snow and teens. I'm extra thankful for hot yoga on my non-running days. I'm getting pretty darn good at it but yet there's so much room for improvement. I think that's what I love about it. I can really tell a difference in how sore I get from running if I haven't been to yoga at least twice a week!

My dog Sophie who's 12, had to have a really large tumor removed from her chest. She's recovering very well but it's been an every other day visit to the vet for bandage changes. I'll be happy when this is done but she's going to be okay so it's all worth it. It's not a cancer that spreads but it may have to be removed again down the line. I could totally feel the blood drain from my face when the surgeon told me the price so let's hope we're done done with this!
They always take the time to make her bandage pretty! And yes, she's wearing a boys Hanes tshirt to keep it clean ;)

FINALLY, this Wednesday is ONE YEAR since my surgery. Amazing how much can happen in 12 short months. I'm putting together an extra special blog post with pictures and updated measurements etc. I'm hoping to have it up on Wednesday but for sure by the end of the week!

Have a happy, healthy week everyone!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

A first

I'm sitting in the bar at a seasons 52 while on a business trip to Cincinnati when I suddenly realized I walked in here and sat down by myself without even thinking about it. As much as I've traveled for work over the years, I have never eaten in public alone - I guess I never wanted to look like the lonely fat girl eating by herself even though I wasn't (well I was fat but not lonely)! I did happily eat whatever I wanted, alone in my hotel getting fatter by the minute. 

This is a new level of confidence for me that was kind of unexpected. I've always thought of myself as confident, even at 250 pounds, but as I experience this I realize that it wasn't real - I used it to try to fool myself into thinking I was fat and happy.  Some people are but I'm just not one of those people. 

My dad was a frequent business traveler and I just can't stop thinking about how proud he would be of me right now!

That's my lobster flatbread, beet salad and a glass of wine. Eating alone with a small stomach means lots of leftovers!

Heading home tomorrow! I have a feeling this year is going to be full of fabulous firsts!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

My success story!

My official success story! I'm so proud of this - and (in case you missed it!) have since gotten to my goal of 125! Thanks Piedmont Healthcare for sharing my story and saving my life.