Archive for December, 2009

New Year’s Eve

Happy early New Year!

I didn’t sleep well at all last night. I felt like I had a fever. I was hot, I was cold, I was confused about where I was and the time. It wasn’t fun.

I woke up around 8:30 wanting to do JIllian Michaels’ No More Trouble Zones, but I thought it would be best to just rest. I really want to be able to run tomorrow. Start the New Year off on the right foot!

It was also snowing this morning! Who knew it was supposed to snow? Luckily I didn’t have anything planned for today so it didn’t really ruin any plans.

I made myself another Green Monster this morning.

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Same recipe as last time except I used 2 cups of spinach and added a teaspoon of maca powder.

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Otherwise I’ve just been taking it easy. I had a delicious scrambled egg sandwich for lunch and I was supposed to make pizzas for my family for dinner, but my mom forgot to buy yeast at the store so that’s not happening!

I have no plans for tonight. I actually haven’t had plans for the past few New Year’s Eves. The past two years this has really depressed me; I bought junk food to eat to make myself feel better and I planned out movies to watch and then went to sleep early so I wasn’t awake at midnight. But this year I’m ok with it.

I’m at my parents’ house where I don’t really have any friends, all my NYC friends are still away, and all my college friends live elsewhere. Sure I could travel and visit someone, but we all know how limited my budget it and honestly, I’ve never found NYE to be that much fun. It’s just one of those nights where there’s too much pressure. And going out is so expensive.

My perfect NYE would be staying in with a few close friends, hanging out, playing games, drinking a reasonable amount, and just relaxing. And since I can’t do that I’m going to have a great time by myself!

But I just want to wish everyone reading this a happy, healthy, productive, fulfilling, and safe 2010. I think it’s going to be an outstanding year.


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Ok, I’m really milking this year-end stuff (see Recaps I, II, and III), but I think reflection is important!

Here’s what I’ve learned in 2009:

1. I can do anything I set my mind to.

This for me is the biggest one. Around this time last year I decided, like every other person on this earth, that I wanted to lose weight in the new year. I started all gun-ho in January, petered off, started again in March, and then really got into it in April.

If you had told year-ago Maggie that I would be training to run a half marathon I would have thought you were pretty nuts. I couldn’t run for more than a few minutes. But now I’ve run for over an hour at a time, I ran three 5ks, and I’m in the best shape of my life.

And it’s not only about fitness. It’s moved over to my diet. If you told me I’d be eating yogurt, barely eating meat, have an obsession with brussel sprouts, and making smoothies with spinach I would have laughed. But I decided to make this change in my life and I did it.

For the first time in my life I feel in control of my destiny and genuinely hopeful. I don’t know why I wasn’t hopeful before, why I had resigned myself to being unhappy and not having goals, but I’m so happy I’ve changed my attitude.

2. Patience is a virtue. (One I’m still working on having.)

I lost 31lbs this year. That’s amazing. I’m so proud of that. And I want to lose more. Some people might say 31lbs in 9 months when I had/have a substantial amount to lose isn’t that great, but to me it’s amazing. I lost the weight in what I consider the best way possible. I made little changes to my diet and exercise routine over time, I didn’t cut out all carbs or start working out for several hours a day every day. Because of this I think I stand a very good change of continuing on with my healthy lifestyle and becoming even more healthy.

Speaking of patience I also learned that over-training can be bad. It probably wasn’t such a good idea to run every day, doing speed work, and then do 20 minutes on a high level on the Stairmaster. Especially if you don’t want your achilles tendinitis to act up.

3. My body is an amazing thing

Before this year I knew how my body worked in the basic high school biology type of way, but this year I’ve learned so much more.

I’ve seen how making smart, healthy, whole food choices give me energy and leave me feeling light and happy, while poor food choices leave me feeling sluggish, bloated, and sick.

I’ve learned that everything is connected. I had no idea that the reason my achilles tendon swells is because my hamstring and calve muscles are tight. I had no idea what an IT band was or where pain in my hip flexor would occur (I would have said outside of my leg).

I’ve seen how different types of exercises affect different parts of my body. I never dreamed my arms could be so sore from holding them up while running, but knowing this is great because it showed me I had to work on arm strength, which I did and now running is easier.

4. Mellow is the way to go.

I don’t really talk about this on here a lot, but I used to have, and still have to some extent, a very type-A personality. I was stressed, I was bossy, I was mean, I was just kind of awful. Ask people I went to college with.

But I continue to see that this isn’t the way to be. Being happy and kind and gracious is the best way to be. And understanding of other people. I think realizing this has been a huge key to my happiness and my ability to do so many other things.

Now I just need to translate this to commuting and driving 🙂

Just to recap, in 2009 I:

  • Lost 31.2lbs
  • Lost 11 3/4 inches
  • Got promoted at work (twice)
  • Ran 3 5k races
  • Ran a PDR of 6.7 miles

Pretty damn good.

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Hypothermia: Hell no

I woke up this morning determined to run. Not really sure why since my cold (sinus infection?) is only getting worse and my computer said it was a toasty 9* outside. I thought it was perhaps best to wait a little while before setting out on the run and by 11am it was a balmy 27* and I was off.

My new Under Armour shirt kept me nice and toasty.

I ran 3.1 miles in negative splits:

Mile 1: 9:50
Mile 2: 9:36
Mile 3: 9:07
And the .1: 0:47 (7:45 pace)

So that’s 29:20, not my best 5k pace, but I’m pretty proud. It was really f’ing freezing! And the wind was insane, the weather report didn’t say anything but wind, but it was windy! (I was also really close to the water.)

There were times when I felt like I was running uphill on flat ground simply because the wind was so strong.

When I got home this guy

was dying for a walk so I added another layer and ventured back out.

I came back planning to have a Green Monster, but it was just so cold I couldn’t do it! Instead I had yogurt, cereal, and chia seeds

Aren’t my parents’ Christmas plates adorable?

They’ve had them for as long as I can remember. They come out every year right after Thanksgiving and go away right after the New Year.

Want to hear something weird? I think Kashi has changed the type of plastic bag they use for the Go Lean Crunch! cereal.

It’s definitely different than the ones I buy in Brooklyn. Very weird.

Moving on, I ate my yogurt and iced my ankles.

I don’t wear the wool socks running, btw, just to keep warm with the ice and the lack of heat in my parents’ house.

And I watched tennis (what else?).

After that I showered and hung out for a little while waiting to go get lunch from…

I haven’t had Panera in FOREVER and I see it on other blogs sometimes and people at work talk about it so I knew I had to go sometime when I was home (we don’t have them in NYC).

I got the French Onion soup (pictured above) and the Frontega chicken sandwich:

They were both delicious in their own special way and very salty. I’ve been guzzling water all afternoon!

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Wondering what I’m doing with all my days off from work? Yeah, me too. But productive things have been accomplished!

I have been wanting to try a Green Monster for a while, but I’ve been afraid. I don’t really like spinach and I have major texture issues with food. But, I decided that today was the day to conquer that fear.

How’d it go?

(I would like it noted that the lighting didn’t look this bad on my camera or I would have taken another picture!)

Really well!! I thought it was delicious!

My green monster had:

  • 1 tbsp. chia seeds
  • 1 c. cooked spinach
  • 1 c. unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/2 c. frozen blueberries
  • 3 ice cubes

It was the only thing I ate until around 3pm and I wasn’t even starving at 3. I think there are going to be a lot of Green Monsters in my future!

Another thing I decided to try was the foam roller. My glutes, hams, and quads have been super tight lately and something needed to be done.

I bought the foam roller on Monday and I’ve done the exercises from this site (although I am not at all coordinated enough to do the arm ones) and although it’s quite painful when I’m doing them I do think it’s helpful.

My legs have been a lot less sore than they were before and my tendon hasn’t been swelling as much.

What else have I been up to?

  • I’ve watched lots and lots of tennis
  • I’ve eaten way too many sweets
  • I have a nasty cold which I think might be a sinus infection
  • I’ve been running twice, did No More Trouble Zones once, and Bikini Ready Fast once
  • I bought running pants from Lululemon and winter running shirts from Under Armour and Nike (pants and Nike shirt seen above)
  • I got locked out of my house since no one in my family realized I didn’t have a key (even though I tell them this all the time)
  • And I’ve been trying in vain to get answers about my potentially very large PT bill

Anyone else off from work? Up to anything fun?

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2009 Recap Part III

Here’s October-December!

A new type of swelling began to occur in my ankles (right one)

I ran in my second 5k

I got the swine flu and although I wasn’t panicked or anything I was really sick.

I went apple picking

I threw out the majority of my clothing

I joined the gym

I saw Blondie perform at the Brooklyn Museum

I participated in Halloween for the first time in years.

I watched the NYC Marathon

I learned to like brussel sprouts, yummm!

I achieved a personal distance record by running 6.7 miles!

I went to the craziest city in America.

My childhood dog died.

My parents got a new dog.

I ran my 3rd 5k.

I had a great time at my office holiday party.

I survived a crazy NYC fall snowstorm (snowman isn’t mine)

I had a great time celebrating Christmas Eve and Christmas with my family.

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Present Review

First, some housekeeping. I finally bought my own URL so update Google Readers and such to www.pickyandhealthy.com.

As you saw on my Christmas recap I received a bunch of gifts that are directly related to fitness. Because of that I thought I’d do a little review here.

First, the Spibelt

When this arrived it was definitely smaller than I had expected. I thought how will it fit my Blackberry, keys, money, and ID, like the website claimed? But by some miracle it does. However, I don’t think I could fit my camera in there as well, but you know I’ll try!

Here’s how it looks empty, next to my BB for comparison

And here it is with my BB inside

There’s still a lot of room to stack things on top of the Blackberry, but I think to fit something like my camera it would need to lie flush to my body and that wouldn’t work. But I think some money, my ID, Gu packs or other such things would easily fit and work.

I’ve worn this for 2 runs now and I really like it. I can’t tell the difference between running with it and running without it.  The first time I had my camera and ID in it and the second my BB and ID. There’s no bouncing or movement at all. That said I am wearing it under some layers since it’s winter here so I guess to really get a feel I’ll have to wear it like a fanny pack with nothing else holding it down to get a real feel.

Second, Sennheiser PMX80 Headphones

I have the Sennheiser CX400 earphones that I use every day and for working out, but with a lot of movement (and a lot of sweat) they slip out of my ears a lot which leads to aggravation on runs and at the gym.

After some research I decided to get the PMX80’s and so far I really like them. The bright orange is a little much, but the sound quality is great. And because they wrap around my head I don’t need to worry about them falling out of my ears.

Two issues. First, with my hat on they didn’t fit over my ears so they were a little loose. Second, the cord is REALLY LONG so I tucked it into my shirt. With layers this was fine (although there was some pulling), but I think this could get annoying.

Positive: they’re much easier to pull on and off than the earbuds which was really helpful when I was out running on roads and wanted to take them off around curves so I could hear if there was a UPS truck speeding around and I needed to jump into a snow bank (not that that happened…).

Third, Garmin Forerunner 305

Enough people have this that I feel like I’m not going to add anything new to the discussion, but I still wanted to post anyway.

I really love this so far. It’s so nice to run and to be able to see how far I’m going (and how far I have left), my pace, and my heart rate. In training for my half marathon my goal is to run 10 minute miles and after running with the Garmin I realized I have a difficult time going that slowly.

It’s so cool to know that when I ran on Saturday I went 3.08 miles in 29:44, at an average pace of 9:38, I burnt 396 calories, and my max heartrate was 181!

And today I went 3.10 miles, in 29:47, at an average pace of 9:37, burnt 396 calories, and had an average heartrate of 181!

I think it’s going to be super helpful with my half marathon training.

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There have been a few things I keep forgetting to post about in other posts so I thought I’d assemble them all together here.

First, the night splint I got from the orthopedist is an amazing miracle. Since I started sleeping in it I’ve had virtually no ankle pain! My ankle has still be swelling, but not nearly as much as it had been. I love the night splint.

And bonus, I don’t even notice it while I’m sleeping! Take that PA who told me it would be so uncomfortable and I would hate it.

Second, I bought really fun Christmas nail polish that I’m really enjoying wearing. OPI by Sephora And a Cherry On Top, if you’re interested.

(It looked better about a week ago.)

Third, I tried this amazing frozen yogurt place at the mall the other day. It’s called 16 Handles (funny, right?). It’s self-serve and you pick from an extensive selection of frozen yogurts (I got the cheesecake) and then put your own toppings on (I got brownie, chocolate chips, and white chocolate sauce). The best part is that you give yourself however much you want so, since I had just eaten dinner, I didn’t have much. And then you weigh it and it’s charged based on weight. Loved it.

Fourth, and this is maybe TMI, but I have super, super dry skin on my hands and wrists and I don’t know what to do. I’ve never had this before! I exfloliate, I moisturize, I dry my hands after washing them, I wear gloves when I’m outside! And still they’re gross. It looks like I have a rash. Plus it’s painful and itchy.

Fifth, I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this, but I get off from work for the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Not because I took vacation time, but because my company shuts down! It’s one of the best parts about working in publishing. Technically we’re open on Christmas Eve but I took off since that’s the only day my family is celebrating. So after December 23, 2009 my next day back in the office is January 4, 2010!!

Sixth, I really, really love my new haircut!

Bad picture (look, you can see the dry skin on my wrist!). Like my pose? I always try to smile and look stupid so I thought I’d just try to look stupid 🙂

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