KRISZTA11   56,353
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Good week

Sunday, November 23, 2014

My second run after blood donation (day 7) was uneventful.
I paid attention not to push myself uphill, but I ended up with my usual pace (9:48 min/mile).

My Anti-Evening-Overeating Plan is working very well, I managed to follow 6 times out of 7. That one night was a high risk one: got home late after long and boring work day, after skipping my after noon snack, had little time before going to the cinema with family, so skipped meditation, and ate a small plate of pasta while preparing my dinner. Nothing horrible.

I count weeks from Saturdays, because that's the day I log my weight for the Maintenance Challenge.
And so I already have my first unsuccessful day, because this Saturday was the year end dinner party at work - of course I could not follow my routine. But eating went OK, and I only had one small drink.

I enjoyed the party very much, in my own introverted way.
I had nice (ie. deep and long) conversations with 3 colleagues, otherwise I leaned back and listened to others speaking, and watched colleagues dancing (some of the girls are as cute as models and they can dance!). I enjoyed just being there, together.
I didn't feel overwhelmed or bored, and my inability to join in small talk or circulate didn't bother me.
When I felt my attention was declining I went home. So I was there from 7 to 11.

When I was young I was terrified when I had to attend parties, especially the kind where you are supposed to be circulate, have small talk with as many people as possible, and stay late and dance. I'd rather had a root canal then this kind of event!
I went anyway but I felt I was a failure because I didn't enjoy the party like everybody else.
It was a relief when I learned about my personality type and found out I'm a perfectly normal introvert, and my preferences are just as valid as those of the extrovert half of the population.
Now I know I have the right to not go if I don't want to, and if I choose to go I can enjoy being there my own way.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ROXYZMOM 11/25/2014 4:18AM

    I am the same way, which is one of the reasons it is so tough this week. I need "my" time to rejuvenate. My friends are constantly wanting to be with us to help us which is nice, but I find myself wanting some space. One if them volunteered to have the reception after my son's funeral. I would rather just go home, but know I have to go. Ugh! I am so grateful she will hold it for me.

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DOGLADY13 11/24/2014 7:59PM

    I come from a family of extroverts. We all married introverts. You can imagine what our family parties are like. LOL

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SMILINGTREE 11/24/2014 10:55AM

    Introverts of the world unite!Or, well, maybe just quietly support one another from afar :) It's good to hear that your run went well, too. Have a lovely week -- what's left of it.

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KANOE10 11/24/2014 7:17AM

    Good for you staying on track with that night eating plan. It is working. I was also stressed by social occasions when I was younger. I am glad you enjoyed your event and felt good about yourself.

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NEW-CAZ 11/24/2014 2:51AM

    Small gatherings are fine, but no...I'm not a party girl either emoticon

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MRS.DOYLE 11/24/2014 1:50AM

    I agree about parties being a bit of an ordeal sometimes. Luckily my small group of friends know me well and are very comfortable to socialise with.

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JEANKNEE 11/23/2014 10:51PM

    Another introvert here...

Good job on the nutrition and party handling front.

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DEB9021 11/23/2014 10:05PM

    it is good that you recognize and appreciate your own style. I am right on the line of introvert/extrovert, but my job is so very people oriented, that I find in my spare time I don't like to feel required to mingle. When my husband's band plays, I am often quite happy to sit alone, listen to the music and people watch. But if other people whom I know well and don't have to make much small talk with are there, I do sometimes enjoy dancing if I am rested and wanting to exercise a bit. It is good to follow your mood and not feel pressured to please others.

It is so interesting to study personalities and styles of learning. I find in my job that it is very helpful to observe children or adults "in action" for a bit before approaching with something you want to tell them or teach them. I think that people who are not very observant of others' personalities and moods get easily offended when they don't get the reaction they expect. While if they were observant and respectful of others preferences, they would get a very different reaction.

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JANTHEBLONDE 11/23/2014 8:51PM

    Woo hoo! I am so proud of you going to the party and watching your portions! That is fabulous that you can run a mile in 9.48 minutes! You are what sparks is all about! You put the sparks in Sparks!
Hugs and love,

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WATERMELLEN 11/23/2014 1:19PM

    Love Sophie Dembling's great book, "The Introvert's Way", which my daughter suggested I read to help me understand her better (and it did).

And I was interested in your great comment on my spark page about intuitive eating: I too eat pretty much the same things day after day but if I don't track I seem to add too many "eating standing up" and "undertracked portion" calories!!

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HONEYBEESBLISS 11/23/2014 12:36PM

    I love how well you are doing! Way to go!
It is nice to know that being introverted and the way we do things a bit differently is perfectly normal! That knowledge in itself helps me relax and enjoy stuff more pressure! WOW you stayed 4 hours!!! That's so cool that you got to enjoy it!

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GINGKO711 11/23/2014 12:29PM

    It sounds like you did pretty well at the party. Both socially and nutritionally!
The holidays are so tricky for introverts.

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Strange run

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Due to work schedule I had to cancel my Wednesday and Friday runs, and run today, on Thursday instead.
This is a work at home day, so I drove to up the hill, dropping off DD at work at 7:00.
Weather was lovely, 6 oC / 42 oF, sunshine, muddy path and moderate to strong wind howling over me in the trees.
The path is up and down, more down on the way out and more up on the way back.
Halfway back there is a long uphill segment with a very steep part which is always hard to run up but I always do it.
Not today. Halfway up the steep part I wanted to slow down to walking, but dismissed the idea at first. But it persisted and I felt strangely weak, so slowed down to walk. I didn't breathe heavily but my heart was racing.
Walking, I was thinking why?
First sign of some viral infection? Possible, the 2-3 times I had to cut my run short was because of that.
Did anything unusual happen to me? And then it clicked: this was my first run after first blood donation! I am missing those red blood cells, as I just donated almost 10% of my blood.
Then I stopped my pedometer, and walked / jogged back to the car.

This means I must be more careful and choose a bit slower pace during the next few runs.
This article says it may take up to 3 weeks to be back to the baseline performance level - no problem for me, as I don't attend to races and I don't push myself to be faster.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOBYCARP 11/20/2014 8:30PM

    That's interesting. I donate blood every 8 weeks, and don't run on donation days per the standard instructions from the Red Cross.

I've never noticed a decreased running capability the next day, but perhaps I never pushed myself all that hard the next day. But I have an opportunity to test this out. My next blood donation is scheduled for Monday, and I have a 10K race on Thursday, which is Thanksgiving Day in the United States.

The operative question is, am I a performance athlete who will suffer a greater drop as hypothesized by the article's author? Or am I simply better conditioned than the average people studied, and will thus see less of an impact?

I suspect that whatever the impact is, it will be small compared to the impact of being well trained or not so well trained.

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JANTHEBLONDE 11/20/2014 6:27PM

    Wow! I didn't realize giving blood could do that to your body! I'm so glad you took it easy and went back to your car! I'm glad you're okay! Hope the rest your day is full of lots of love and happiness!
Hugs and love,

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WENDYANNE61 11/20/2014 3:05PM

    Wow - that is really interesting - hope you will be feeling as right as rain soon and can do other things like yoga for a few days instead! Take care!

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BROOKLYN_BORN 11/20/2014 2:37PM

    Very smart not to push it. Take of yourself and come back stronger.

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LESLIESENIOR 11/20/2014 2:23PM

    Way to pay attention and let your body be the guide. Of course, you have become an expert at being intuitive with your body after that awesome 9 week challenge!!!!!
Your runs sound beautiful no matter how quickly or slowly you complete them. So meditative!

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HONEYBEESBLISS 11/20/2014 11:53AM

    Ahh at least you remembered about the blood donation! And since it was your first one you didn't know what to expect yet so it's cool that you realized what was going on to work with it!

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KANOE10 11/20/2014 11:18AM

    Take care of yourself! Good for you listening to your body.

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SMILINGTREE 11/20/2014 9:29AM

    The last time I donated blood, it took all weekend for me to even begin feeling normal. It didn't used to bother me at all. I'm glad you figured it out, and hope you feel better soon!

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ROXYZMOM 11/20/2014 9:13AM

    Wow! I was thinking your first thought too, can always tell when I am getting sick by my run.
I am glad you aren't sick!!
Great job paying attention to your body as you ran.

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JEANKNEE 11/20/2014 9:10AM

    The weakness following the blood donation makes sense!

Glad you listened to your body and responded to support its needs.


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CAROLCRC 11/20/2014 8:00AM

    The impact of blood donation is more than you'd expect. You'll be back to 95% in 3-4 days. I stop donating when I'm doing marathon training - it just messes up the training too badly.

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NEW-CAZ 11/20/2014 7:00AM

    Good that you listened to your body and didn't push on. emoticon

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Tuesday update

Monday, November 17, 2014

My Plan to Avoid Evening Overeating is working well.
On work-at-home days it is usually not 100%, but I don't mind as those days are low risk anyway.

Today I weighed 63.6 kg - closest to my center weight in 10 weeks.

There is blood donation in our office building every few months, and I wanted to do it the last time, but I was turned down because I only had a copy of my social security ID (the original was lost about 20 years ago).
I requested a new original and with it I proudly went to donate blood today.
It was very well organized, and all my tests were OK: heart rate 77, blood pressure 135/75 mmHg, and to my surprise my hemoglobin level was 150 g/L which is around the upper normal limit for women. And I'm not taking any vitamins / supplements.
In pre-SPark times my skin used to be so pale people often thought I was anemic and told me so.
Now the only comment I receive about my complexion is that I look nice and healthy : )

The blood donation went well, in the next hour I felt a bit lightheaded and forgetful, after that it all went back to normal.

Getting home from work I followed my plan: drank water on the way home, made fruit tea, meditated 10 minutes, then ate a nice plate of broccoli, rice any curry chicken made by my son.
I ate it mindfully, no reading, focusing on food, and finished with a square of dark chocolate. Now I'm off to brush my teeth and this is the end of eating today.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KANOE10 11/18/2014 7:12AM

    Your plan is going well. I also like drinking water on the way home as it fills me up. You are staying healthy and overcoming a habit.


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NEW-CAZ 11/18/2014 2:57AM

    emoticon emoticon

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COMPUTERTEACHER 11/17/2014 10:23PM

    Great job!! emoticon

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MJREIMERS 11/17/2014 8:58PM

    It was a productive day! I love different types of food, but I haven't tried curry...that I know of. Keep up the good work!

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ROXYZMOM 11/17/2014 8:13PM

    Awesome job getting yourself back on track. You are so self-disciplined!
And, so lucky to have your son cooking healthy foods for you!

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JANTHEBLONDE 11/17/2014 7:54PM

    You are doing fabulous! I'm so proud of you! I hope you had a wonderful Monday!
Hugs and love,
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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WENDYANNE61 11/17/2014 5:56PM

    That is great, Kriszta! The curry sounds delicious too. I am still laid up after my foot op and people keep bringing me nice things (like organic chocolates) - agghhh!

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HONEYBEESBLISS 11/17/2014 5:30PM

    emoticon That's great! Way to go on everything!

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JEANKNEE 11/17/2014 4:06PM

    Well let's chalk the Tuesday vs. Monday up to the blood donation, shall we?

Happy to hear that your plan is working well for you and nice of you to donate your blood. I know blood supplies often run low around here at this time of year.

Nice work!

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KRISZTA11 11/17/2014 3:25PM

    Hmmm obviously it is MONDAY update, not Tuesday!

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My plan for the new Maintenance Challenge

Thursday, November 13, 2014

I have been in a rut of evening overeating in the past few weeks.
This really bothers me, because I know better, and I'm not hungry at all to start with.
Then I get home, walk into the kitchen, grab whatever I like and return for more, in addition forget to drink.
My brain seems to be switched off.
Really annoying.

On Tuesday, when I was on a business trip and I ate my packed sandwiches, I didn't even think of eating more, despite walking 1 hour before and swimming 45 minutes after dinner.

This is my plan to get rid of this harmful behavior:
when I get home
1. drink a glass of water
2. prepare fruit tea
3. sitting meditation 10 minutes
4. plan, prepare and eat dinner mindfully, a meal that makes me feel good
5. brush teeth and avoid kitchen

Easier said and done, even if I decidedly did not include any restrictions on the portion size.
To help make it work, I create a Spark Streak of this, and also share my success rate on the new Maintenance Challenge thread.
Also placed a visual reminder on my desk.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DEB9021 11/16/2014 9:00PM

    Great plan! I, too, am trying to refocus on the good eating that I know works. I do think that cold weather and darker days make you instinctively want to reach for "bulk up" foods. I have been reading more lately, too. It was a fine habit for road trips, but I have to be careful not to turn it into couch time once I'm not stuck in the car. I love to read but it can breed inactivity.

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ROXYZMOM 11/14/2014 9:25AM

    Looks like a great plan. I run into the same problem. I tend to think it relates to shorter days - instinctive hibernation mode??

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LESLIESENIOR 11/13/2014 11:59PM

    Great plan! I know you will share how it is working for you which will inspire us all to do the same. Your plan is the perfect example of a SMART plan. Thank you!!!!

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JANTHEBLONDE 11/13/2014 11:02AM

    Sounds like you have a fabulous plan! Great goals! You can do it! I hope you have a wonderful day!
Hugs and love,

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HONEYBEESBLISS 11/13/2014 10:56AM

    Sounds like a good plan! emoticon

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JEANKNEE 11/13/2014 9:12AM

    Good idea making a streak out of your action plan. I like it!

Wishing you success in ridding the harmful behavior.


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KANOE10 11/13/2014 7:07AM

    Good luck on your plan. You can do it. Planning your meals ahead and making sure they are meals that you like will help. Starting a streak is a good idea!

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WENDYANNE61 11/13/2014 7:05AM

    Hope your good ideas work out. I find mindless eating is often a result of a build-up of stress after a working day - the sitting meditation should counteract that.... All the best!

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LOSINGLISA 11/13/2014 5:52AM

    Great plan! I'm having the same problem, mindless eating in the evening. The tea is a great idea! Thanks.

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NEW-CAZ 11/13/2014 3:00AM

    Great plan SMART goals, you'll do it!!! emoticon

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Miscellaneous update

Sunday, November 09, 2014

New Shoes
I have 736 miles in my old winter running shoes, and 580 in the newer summer shoes.
On Tuesday I worked next to the Nike outlet store and checked if there are any shoes good for running outside, with water resistant upper material, and fit for the Nike+ sensor.
And yes, the had Nike Pegasus Trail 28!
This is exactly the same as my old winter shoe, and I searched for this model everywhere last fall and it was nowhere to be found.

Two Good Runs
Today and on Friday I ran the forest trail on the hills, I love that place. Weather is exceptionally mild, 13 oC / 55 oF, I ran in short sleeves and capris.
Fall colors are beautiful, the dominant color is golden yellow, with some brown and very little red. And lots of sunshine.
I ran faster than I usually do, 9:40 min/mile, very close my personal best race pace which was 9:29.
I have no idea why.

Some Foot Pain
Today when I walked down the stairs in socks I felt a mild pain in the sole of my left foot. Sat down, looked, saw nothing, pressed the place with my thumb, it hurt.
Hm. Should I cancel my run, in case this is first sign of plantar fasciitis?
Put on my shoes, walked a bit and didn't feel any pain, so off I went. No problem at all during and after the run.

Mindful Eating
I eat all my breakfasts mindfully, focusing on the food and on the eating process itself, and 1-2 other meals too.

Thanks to the exceptional warm weather, this week we could do yoga outside, on the terrace with my husband. The two evening workouts under full moon, the two morning workouts in bright sunshine. It was a pleasure every time.
My husband seems to be hooked, he does yoga almost every day, and he is very happy with the strength, flexibility and good mood he gained.
Also this is a good quality time together.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NEW-CAZ 11/11/2014 3:29AM


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MOBYCARP 11/9/2014 8:40PM

    That's serious mileage for running shoes; are you sure you didn't mean to say kilometers?

Plantar fasciitis typically manifests as heel pain, not pain in the sole. While any foot pain is a concern, the first thing to check when you get an unusual twinge that isn't correlated to a change in running is, are your shoes worn out? Even if you meant kilometers instead of miles, that's an awful lot of running on those shoes. Your new shoes may well fix the foot pain problem.

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WENDYANNE61 11/9/2014 4:27PM

    Gosh, that all sounds really good! So glad your husband is enjoying some of the things you like too!

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JANTHEBLONDE 11/9/2014 1:49PM

    Wow! You are amazing running 9.40 miles! So glad to hear your foot pain went away so you were able to run! That's fabulous you and your husband do yoga together on your deck!
You are what sparks is all about! You put the Sparks in Sparks! I hope you have a wonderful day!
Hugs and love,

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HONEYBEESBLISS 11/9/2014 12:01PM

    That's awesome to find the shoes you had been wanting! And awesome on the runs and everything else too!

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THOMASINA57 11/9/2014 11:50AM

    Wow, you are incredible, what a runner!!!. I love being outdoors in the kind of weather you describe.. it's similar here on Vancouver Island right now. I love the sound of your yoga and it's something that I need to get back into also as I can feel my body needs it. It's great that your husband does yoga with you..

I too love the fall colours I see when out on my bike, and riding at this temperature is quite enjoyable.. emoticon

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JEANKNEE 11/9/2014 11:32AM

    Wonderful news on a number of fronts...

It is nice to hear that you were able to enjoy a couple of yoga sessions outdoors with your husband. It brought to mind an outdoor Tai Chi session shared with my husband years ago. :-)

New running shoes must be on the radar. I picked up some new shoes yesterday. Hope your feet remain pain free.

Have a wonderful week and keep up the great work on the mindful eating front.

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WATERMELLEN 11/9/2014 9:44AM

    Excellent news on so many different fronts -- has to feel great to score a new pair of your preferred shoes!!

Mindful eating makes everything taste better!!

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ROXYZMOM 11/9/2014 9:40AM

    Sounds so romantic, especially under a full moon.

You must have worked out the tightness in your foot. Maybe it was your new running shoes? You are in the break-them-in stage.

Congratulations on your new sneaks and your running time!!


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KANOE10 11/9/2014 8:55AM

    I do yoga outside when I visit Hawaii. How nice that your husband is doing it also. are you doing your own workouts or are you using you tube?
Good job on running and mindful eating.

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