I tend to learn the most when I completely suck..

As I mentioned in an earlier post I had made it a point to fit some exercise and physical activity into my vacation. It, the sheer act of moving and getting sweaty, when done correctly, isn't a chore for me and so why would I take leave from that part of my life right? And so I did. We hiked, first down then back up a "mountain" (a ski hill at Blue Mountain for any of you familiar with the Collingwood area), we biked for an hour and a half. We moved and it was great. Those parts anyway...

I also went running. Twice since my last post actually. The sun was shining,birds chirping, the breeze was just noticable enough to keep me cool on what was going to perfect day for 10K run.

Yeah right!

Instead my legs felt heavy and tired, my breathing was labored, my stomach..uh, let's just say unsettled. It was so far from the perfect run that I really couldn't have been more disappointed. I swore (both out loud and to myself to the shock of other vacationers I'm sure!) and begrudgingly made my way back to the cottage, having only ran just less than 4 of the 5 planned kilometers I had set out to cover.

And then it hit me. I could run (and walk then run some more) the whole way back pissed off at how shitty the run had been. Hell I could go so far as to piss and moan that I hate running, that I never want to do it again, that I am just not cut out for this friggin' crap, but what good would it do me? I still want to run and I will still continue to run so where would a good ol' fashion bitch-fest get me? Would I run better next time? Maybe, but definitely not because I pouted and sulked my way through the next 3.5K about it.

So instead I asked myself a question: I said "Samantha, you know you are better then this so what happened?"

And with that, just one little question, a flood of answers came about: I hadn't hydrated properly yesterday (or the day before that, or even the day before that), my eating and sleeping habits were completely out of whack. I was running on a now empty stomach that had been filled to the brim with BBQ chicken burgers, potatoes and salad and tortilla chips and salsa the night before. I hadn't warmed up or stretched. I was running in new shorts (umm, hello chafing! Ouch!!) Everything, and I mean everything that I knew had gone out the window and yet I still wanted to run a PB that morning?!? Duh!

And so, as I trudged along I learned a valuable lesson, one that I wouldn't have learned had I just hammered out at 58 minute 10K. I never ask myself why I do well. The answer ("that I totally rock and kick major ass!!!") is obvious isn't it? Its only when I am disappointed, when, in essence, that I let myself down, that I reflect back on all the things that go into why I can do what I have done and will continue to do. And now I know what I always knew and that is if I want to be a runner, then I had better damn well be one! Whether its breakfast time or bedtime or anytime in between I need to be a runner. Because as they say, how far is your car going to get you if you fill the tank with donuts? So here's to making all parts of my lifestyle work together to get me to my goals.

So tell me, whats the best lesson that you have learned the hard way when it comes to health and fitness?


Fitness Bucket List

I got this idea from one of the other fabulous blogs that I read, and now for the life of me I can't remember who it was! (If its you please let me know so that I can link to you) What it is, is a fitness bucket list, or a list of all the things you want to accomplish before you, well, kick the bucket so to speak. Inspired originally by the movie The Bucket List, its a really interesting (albeit slightly morbid) way to really lay it all out there in the open as someone with nothing to lose and with nothing to fear.
In reality I think we all have some goals that we place in the "will do" pile and a few more that we have tucked away in the "wouldn't it be nice" drawer. You know, those goals that we are afraid to even utter out loud because someone might hear us and scoff that they are crazy or "dang near impossible!"<---insert a little bit of a hillbilly accent here for effect. The bucket list idea dissolves the fear of uttering your goals within earshot of someone else because hell, you ain't gonna tell me what I can and can't do before I die are you??

So here it is, my bucket list of fitness goals:

- 25 min 5K
-50 min 10K
-Complete a 1/2 marathon (training for one this fall)
-Complete a full marathon (planning one for 2011)
-Run and complete the New York City Marathon ('cuz its NYC baby!!)
-Participate in a long distance charity bike ride such as The Ride to Conquer Cancer, which is a 2 day, 200K  ride from Toronto to Niagara Falls.
-Complete a 15K trail race
-Teach a Bootcamp inspired class
-15-20 real pushups (still working on this one...its tougher then is seems!!)

This isn't all because as I check some off I will inevitably add more and continue to strive to accomplish more then I had ever imagined. Stay tuned......

Tell me, whats on your Fitness Bucket List?



The great vacation debate...

Currently I am enjoying a very well deserved (if I do say so myself) vacation up in cottage country with my boyfriend and two of our fur babies (a goofy Golden Retriever and a cat who got a last minute ticket to vacation-ville by getting a UTI of sorts, costing me $1000 and ending up on medication for a week...but that my friends is another rant for another time!!) Its beautiful and relaxing up here; just what you'd want from a vacation spot. One problem though: It's so relaxing I am "forgetting" to exercise and eat as cleanly as I should.

Okay, let's get real, nothing has truly been forgotten. I didn't just wake up and fail to remember that at home 5 or 6 days of a week are dedicated to one sweat-fest or another. I didn't have a memory lapse and become unable to recognize the Mizunos that were packed with a purpose, are sitting by the front door but have only made their way out of the cottage once since Saturday. Oh no, I know what I am conveniently choosing not to remember

Let's face it, it can be almost impossible to roll out of bed on the best of days and throw on your running gear and head out the door before the rest of the world has even brewed their first cup of coffee. But here, that difficulty is magnified by I don't know, a million! I wake up, there's a cool breeze, a small ray of sunshine peaking in from the window, the birds are chirping. Sure, this makes for a beautiful morning to go for a run but it also makes for an even more beautiful day to laze in bed with Boyfriend (who is still tucked under the covers as I write this by the way) and pretend that exercise is something that other people do.

So clearly I am struggling. I have made some decent food choices (along with some less than decent ones) since we arrived and I did go out for a 5K yesterday AND I plan to hike, bike and run some more this week. What I need to do now is turn this little lapse around and make the right decisions going forward. I need to find a way to incorporate fun activity into my time off (like the aforementioned hiking for example!!) I need to eat healthy for the majority of my stay and not get too caught up in the little treats here and there.The challenge, which I do choose to accept, is making those plans and sticking to them.

Here's to a relaxing but also active week away!

Tell me, do you struggle to fit fitness into your vacation? Do you ever take a vacation from that part of life too?



She's baaaaaaaack!!

Hey blog world, how the heck are ya?! Remember me, the artist formally known as Sugar Free Cupcake? I know, I know, its been forever and a day. What's that? Aw, well that's so nice of you to say and yes, I missed you too. We really have to keep in touch. I mean it too.

So officially it has been 6 months since I dropped off the blog radar. It wasn't what I wanted (I love it here!) but it was what I needed at the time. Let's just say that life got crazy for a while and I lost my blogging mojo in the process.
Now for the good news: Since I have been gone I have maintained my weight loss (there has been a few fluctuations, first down then up, along the way) I have been busy in the gym AND (this is my favorite part!) I have been kicking some major ass in the running department!!

Flash back to Fall 2009: A runner was something I wanted to be. Sure, I literally ran, but I had a really hard time qualifying myself in a league of people whose sheer physical fitness simply astounds me. At that point my furthest distance was 5K and while that is definitely nothing to sneeze at I knew I wanted more. I set some goals during that time, one of them being to run a 10K in the spring. Well guess what?!? I did it! TWICE!! How friggin' awesome is that?

Fast forward to Spring 2010: These days I run all the freaking time! 6K here, 9K there. 16.5 wonderfully painful kilometres all in one shot even! And I feel great! I am a Runner (and not just because I now have a nifty subscription to Runner's World either) Running has found a place in my life like no other activity ever has. Sure, I still cross train a few days a week, but even spinning and boxing don't have the same special place in my heart that running does. I wake up early on my days off to run, I run in the rain, I run and I run and I run!

Here I am crossing the finish line of the Sporting Life 10K in Toronto:

And I did it in less then an hour which I am so excited about!

Its been a crazy ride folks but look where I ended up: Healthy, happy and still rocking my skinny jeans!

There's so much more but I'll save that for another day..... I'm so glad to be back.



Makeover almost complete.....

After I lengthy hiatus from the blog world I will be returning soon with lots and lots to share with you all!

Stay tuned for photos, running updates (I did not one but TWO 10Ks this spring!), my nutrition overhaul and much, much more!

I've been reading blogs while I was gone but I am making a point this week to get caught up on all your lives too....yay!

Have you got a story to share with me? What have you been up to while I was away?