Hello Kitty Isn't A Cat?!?!?!?!

SO today I found out some devastating news.... Hello Kitty is not a cat... Yes, you read this correctly. Apparently we've been lied to about Hello Kitty for years. If you can't tell by now, then you obviously don't know me, but I am a HUGE Hello Kitty fan. This news comes as a personal blow to me. Here is the link that proves it all: http://www.peopl:e.com/article/hello-kitty-not-a-cat. I may drown my sorrows in some fro-yo - don't judge me.

Now that I've gotten that news off my chest, I can discuss my past couple of days. And, I can tell you they sucked. I've been struggling with getting back to my workouts. I think part of the problem is that nutrition-wise I've been completely unhealthy. I've pretty much eaten out for lunch everyday this week, and will be eating some dinners out as well. That is just not good. As much as I hate to say this, nutrition is really important for your workouts, not only as fuel, but bad foods can cause you all sorts of health problems and psychological problems (you're depressed because you're getting fat, and you eat to drown your sorrows- do you see this vicious cycle?).

On Monday my workout consisted of Orange Theory. I felt okay during class, but I was still sore from my Monday workout. I did fantastic on the treadmill. We spent about 25 minutes doing treadmill work which consisted of two blocks. The first block was a .20 mile run followed by 20 High Rows using the Rower Bar and a 200 meter row. The second block was a .15 mile run followed by 20 Tricep Rows on each arm and then a 200 meter row. I probably completed 4 of those workouts. For the .20 mile runs, I averaged under 1:15 minutes for each one and for the .15 mile runs, I averaged right under 50 seconds.

Once we got to the weight room I was dying. I can't remember all of the workouts we did (I personally think I don't remember the workouts because I hate my life during this time period), but we used the SBT straps ALOT and free weights.

Tuesday I ran. My Garmin wasn't charged so I decided to run Garmin-free. I was originally going to go for  3 miles, but since I don't have a set 3 mile course, I ran my 4 mile course :) I didn't run very fast and felt out of breath and pretty crappy during the entire run. I finished the run discouraged and frustrated. The only plus of my run was listening to the new Ariana Grande CD. My favorite songs of the moment: Why Try and Best Mistake.

So now we get to today... my run club.. I was dreading running tonight because I've been sucking horribly at all of my workouts, and I didn't want the club to see how badly I was sucking. I still decided to leave with the last group even though I considered running with the middle group. I have to admit, I'm glad I waited. Maybe it was Taylor Swift's new song "Shake It Off" or my racing flats, but I actually kicked some butt on my run. I hadn't been going faster than 8:15 minute miles the last couple of weeks, after being able to run under 8 minute/miles easily. However, tonight I was able to pull around 7:30 minute/miles for almost 4 miles (3.64 miles)!! I was so STOKED!! I needed that. I really really needed that. Even though I lost my Lululemon headband (those things are $14!!), I had a blast at run club. I got to see my friend A and a bunch of other people I knew. I really love that group. I can't wait until next weekend. One bonus about tonight: one of my friends got me a bumper sticker for my car :)

Tomorrow I'm having dinner with friends so I am going to try to get some Jillian Michaels Abs Workout In :) Lord knows I need to work on my abs..

When You're In the Zone

I talk about getting in the zone when I'm working out. Some of you might know what getting to that zone looks like, but some of you might not. Each person has their own "zone" that they get into when working out. Let me tell you what it's like for me when I get into the zone.

It usually takes me a couple of minutes to get in the zone during my workout. Once I start working out, I focus so much on my workout (whether it be running or Orange Theory) that I block out my surroundings and my inner thoughts. Once I successfully block out everything, I tune in on my form, pace, reps, music, etc. I pretty much focus on one thing that will help me complete my workout. 

When you're in this zone, you really don't acknowledge time. You don't stare at the clock, you don't countdown the seconds, or stop because "it seems like a lot of time has passed." You're literally lost in the moment. Again, you're just focused on what your doing at that exact moment in time and it feels incredible. Typically I feel invincible and strong. Once you're finished with your workout, you feel a high that just puts you in a good mood for the rest of the day and ready to kick the worlds butt. I love those kinds of days.

Today was definitely getting one of those days I got in the zone. I've come to enjoy my orange theory Saturday workouts. I typically run to class, get through the workouts, and run back home. Today's run was pretty humorous because there is some construction in the shopping plaza where orange theory is located in and it prolonged my run. I didn't expect the added length, so when I got to the fence that blocked the path, I loudly yelled out, "are you freaking kidding me?" Once I got inside the gym, I was sweaty and gross, and ready for class

I obviously got on the treadmill first, and was thrilled to burn off all the slices of pizza I ate the day before... I may have had pizza for lunch and dinner (don't judge me). Our workout block was to complete .20 (@ a 2% incline), followed by a 200 meter row. Each time you finished that block you repeated the block and increased the incline by 1%. I got through about 7 rounds of that block before time was up. 

For the weight room, we started off doing 8 reps of reverse lunges with a one leg squat on the sbt straps, followed by 8 reps of low rows. You had to do these two workouts continually for 5 minutes. After that block was finished, you had to grab free weight and do 8 reps of squats with a bicep curl, followed by 8 chest presses. This workout was done for 4 minutes and they instructor had me change my weights from 12.5 pounds to 15 pounds... Which was for the best ;) for the fourth block you had to 8 reps of Arnold palmers, 8 reps of Sumo squats,and one more workout which I can't remember lol.. The last set was 10 tricep extensions on the sbt straps, followed by 10 in and out jumps - ( these are really hard)!!!

I felt amazing during my workout, like all of the toxins were slowly draining out. I. Hoping to keep up my workouts this week. I really need to work on my nutrition because I know it's important... Until next time ;) 

Feeling Out of Shape and Tired

Today I had run club! They had the Ice Bucket Challenge after the run, but since I did mine yesterday, I left right after my run so I wouldn't have to participate... I know.. I know.. In my defense I had to dump ice water on my head three times yesterday (since my husband wasn't home to videotape me, I kept having to do it over)... I also have to do it again on Tuesday. So seriously, I think it was okay. Here is a copy of my video :)

As much as the challenge sucked, it's for a good cause and has raised so much money which is amazing! Plus it's fun to watch people's videos. C'mon you know it. Ok, so enough about the Ice Bucket Challenge :)

I was so excited to go to run club tonight (ok, when am I not excited to go?) and hang out with my friend A. My ankle had been feeling better and I had started working out again, so I figured I could just go on a fast run. After a half mile, my ankle felt weird and I knew that my run was going suck. Not only did my ankle bother me, but I felt like I couldn't speed up my pace. I was having trouble just running. Now, the first mile, I pulled at 7:35, bur my overall pace for 3.5 miles was 8:03 min/mile. I know that's not bad, but I wanted that number to be faster. I'm hoping next week my ankle feels better and so do I..

On a brighter note, I really enjoyed my swim last night. The weather was beautiful. I got in about a half mile swim, and it felt fantastic. I love being in the water. I've also been going to Orange Theory, and found myself completely engrossed in my workouts every time. I think that now that the doctor has cleared me, I truly appreciate my workouts and just want to get through them as fast and efficiently as possible!!! I'm hoping for a good workout tomorrow...

Another Doctor Visit

Even though I'm tired, I figured I would blog since I promised I would (ugh, I hate that I usually stick to my words lol). So here it goes...

I was referred to another heart rhythm specialist (aka electrophysiologists) by someone I worked with who is also a doctor. Because of the personal connection, I got in an appointment within 24 hours and was treated like VIP. I'm not going to lie - it was an awesome experience.

So, I go to my appointment, and immediately love the cozy atmosphere of the office. The hospital I go to is always busy and since it's so big, you're always waiting with like 20-30 other people. As I sit waiting for the doctor, it takes me less than 15 minutes to get called in, and once I get into the room, the nurse begins asking me a series of questions about my history. As she tries to get my hospital records over the phone, I get an EKG by a technician (this is like my 4th EKG in a month). Once the technician is finished with my EKG, the doctor comes in to talk to me.

He asks me to tell him about my history starting from the beginning. I run through the past year, and even discuss with him what my last electrophysiologist told me: to cut out triathlons and scale back on running. After I told him that explanation from the other electrophysiologist, he was surprised. He explained to me that he doesn't understand why someone would tell me to scale back on working out. Unless the event monitor was showing some crazy data, nothing in my explanation of heart palpitations would cause a doctor to tell you to scale back. The only way he would tell me to scale back is if I felt dizzy and out of it while I had heart palpitations. Since he still needed all of the data from my event monitor, he scheduled another appointment with me in a couple of weeks. However, he left me with this: I CAN KEEP WORKING OUT!!!! Best news ever :) Now, they still don't know what's wrong with me, but at least they're not trying to change my whole life at this moment which is good because I need all of the mental clarity I can get during my runs.

Tomorrow I'm heading back to my third Orange Theory class in a week. I can't wait! This time I'll call my heart monitor people before the workout so I don't freak them out like I did on Thursday lol.    

Birthday Week!!

I love my birthday. Absolutely love it. Some people might mourn another candle on their cake, but I welcome it! With age you gain wisdom and a new perspective on life, what else can you really ask for? So as my birthday approached, I was so freaking excited!!

The day of my birthday, I walked into my beautifully decorated office! This year the theme was Princess Evie :) I can't say that I minded it lol. All my decorations were princess related and pink. Not only was I showered by gifts, but I got a whole lot of phone calls and Facebook messages.

I definitely indulged in some junk food and am hoping to get back on track next week! I did spin on my bike for 45 minutes before I went out to dinner.

The day before I attended an early morning Orange Theory class to get my blood pumping! I did end up also going to run club on Wednesday. It was fantastic! I was definitely out of breath, but it was worth it...

In other news I went to another heart rhythm specialist. I'll update you about this tomorrow... I'm sooo tired!

Heart Broken

Five days ago I had a heart rate monitored placed on me. For the next 30 days it was going to monitor my heart activity and attempt to capture my "heart racing" episodes. Since they happen sporadically, this was the only way the doctor could make sure that it was caught in action. The doctor left me by telling me I shouldn't expect to hear from him until the end of the 30 days, unless I call him to let him know I had an episode.

The next day my doctor called me. I figured my monitor wasn't working correctly, but I was wrong. He told me that my heart dropped to a pretty low rate at night. Since he didn't understand why, he wanted to refer me to a heart rhythm specialist. He told me not to worry, and the heart rhythm specialist would be calling me. I cried right after we hung up. I was so confused, this wasn't the reason I went to him. I wanted an explanation about why my heart races. (You might realize at this point that I cry a lot, and you're right lol). In my defense I was scared. You only have one heart, and I had no idea what the doctor meant and what he thought it could be.

The next day my heart rate monitor was beeping at me around 5AM. When I grabbed my phone I saw that I had two missed calls from the heart rate monitoring company and a voicemail. I checked my heart rate monitor and it had a message displayed on the screen to call the heart rate monitor company. I called them right away and answered some of their questions, but I had so many questions of my own. I was scared. This thing woke me up and I had no idea why. They did tell me the doctor set up parameters on the machine, but they couldn't tell me my heart rate.  I had to wait until Monday. When we hung up, I cried again. I was so tired and didn't understand what was going on.

We had friends coming in town with their baby and dogs so they definitely helped me keep my mind off of everything. Part of their reason for coming down was for my friend, T, to attend a bridal shower (plus hang out with me). We had a blast at the bridal shower, but wearing a visible heart rate monitor was ridiculous and I had to answer questions about it. That night I was anxious about going to bed. I was scared that something was wrong with my heart rate while I slept. That night I fell asleep late.

The next morning I was woken up by a phone call from the heart rate monitoring company. I answered their questions and when I hung up, I saw a missed call from another number and a voicemail. When I checked the voicemail, I discovered it was the on call cardiologist from the hospital. I called his cell phone right away and talked to him for a little bit. Apparently he thought I might have lost consciousness and told me my heart rate dropped into the 30s. He told me he was going to call another doctor and he would get back to me. Yup, you guess it, I cried again. In my mind this must be pretty serious if the on call cardiologist is calling you from his cellphone at 7AM. I did get a call from him in the afternoon and he told me he wasn't that worried about me at this point since I hadn't fainted. He also told me the heart rhythm doctor was going to be seeing me during the week and that would be good. That made me feel a little bit better. That afternoon I had a mild flutter and pressed the button. Hell, I figured if they were monitoring me I would at least let them know something happened.

The next morning I called the cardiologist, and his nurse spoke to me. They were trying to get me an appointment with the heart rhythm specialist. About 30 minutes later I got a call and I was scheduled for the next day (today) at 11:20. They told me I had to fast. Yup, life didn't suck enough lol.

So I go into the appointment today scared. I meet with the doctor and he tells me that my low heart rate levels are the result of a long period of endurance training. Endurance training that is considered extreme, and starting to become harmful to my heart. His discussion with me seemed extreme, but he stated that my heart rate has become so low due to a reflex in my cardiovascular conditioning. If this type of conditioning continues, my heart rate will be predisposed to cardiac problems later on. He prohibited me from triathlons and told me to scale back on running. See, he explained that your heart rate is a result of the past 10 years of cardiovascular conditioning. I can't undue this in a matter of weeks. It takes time, lots of time.

His news hit me like a ton of bricks. Running is a big part of my life. It's a coping mechanism I use to think about my life, relieve my stress and work out in my head the things that weigh heavy on my heart (no pun intended lol). No triathlons? Are you serious? Scaling back on running? I had to go from 4/5 miles to 2 miles. My heart was slowly breaking as the news sunk in. He was asking me to change the lifestyle I've had for the past 14 years. Some of you might think this is great news. You don't have a serious heart condition, and you're right. However, this news is not the greatest for me. Plus, they still haven't figured out why my heart is racing. My original reason for even going.

As I type this, I feel sad. Sad that I have to change a part of my life that I love so much. I've done my fair share of other physical activity, but i truly love running. I love being outside finding new routes and feeling alive. I'm sure everything will be fine, but for now, I just want to be sad. I don't want to think about how to change everything in just one day. I'm sure this will take time, and I'm sure I'll feel better as time passes. On the somewhat plus side, I rolled my ankle last Wednesday at run club and just started getting a cold, so I can't workout. Lol, sigh.
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