October 13, 2016

September 2016 Review

by pyrad
Categories: General Running and/or Fitness
Tags:
Comments: 2 Comments

I had such high hopes for September. Unfortunately it started with a sputter, and a cough 🙁

August‘s word of the month was RISE . Because a lot of things happened this month, not all of them necessarily by my choice, I’d say my word of the month was NECESSARY!

Continuing this feature I started in January here’s this month’s monthly summary at a glance:

September 2016 at a glance
Starting Current Change To Go
Weight (lbs.) 213.8 216.2 +2.4
Fat (lbs.) 65.6 67.9 +2.3 32.9
Goal This Month Annual Average
Hours Sleep 8.00 7.15 7.28
Starting Current Change To Go
PMP PDUs 52 54 +2 1
This Month Year to Date
Running KM’s 37 km 630 km

 

August ended on such a high note: I was back into a good training routine, my ankle wasn’t hurting anymore, and I was really pushing hard! Then September started with a thud. I went down hard with some sort of flu. I felt bad all over. It looks like getting up at 4am several days in a row isn’t a good idea. Well, I mean, it could have worked if I was going to sleep at 7 or 8pm every night. Regrettably, I wasn’t, and my body rebelled, hard!

I get a flu shot almost every year, so I don’t think I’ve ever gotten a full-blown flu in a long time. I get colds, but those last a couple of days. This was a solid two weeks of feeling awful. Two weeks of no running or gym. It was so frustrating to have my ankle finally healed, and now have to deal with a debilitating flu. But, the time off was necessary

I got pretty worried about not being ready for Scotia in time. I made that ambitious 7-week plan in August, and losing two weeks in the middle was definitely a setback.

In the meantime, stress was mounting on me from wedding planning, expenses, and other personal life entanglements  Losing my outlet to exercise was a blow to my stress management. To my shame, it was easier to escape to fantasy of books and such rather than think of facing the fighting and stress of weddings and family. So, I wound up reading a whole book in the evenings while I was sick. Then I painted a model based on the main character from the novel.

 

"Yarrick: The Pyres of Armageddon" by David Annandale
“Yarrick: The Pyres of Armageddon” by David Annandale

I painted a miniature character model of Commissar Sebastian Yarrick, the main character from the aforementioned book
I painted a miniature character model of Commissar Sebastian Yarrick, the main character from the aforementioned book

 

By September 20 I was finally feeling well enough to run and exercise again. But, languishing had taken its toll. I lost a lot of fitness, gained a lot of weight, and developed a lot of doubt.

 

Timely joke I found on Tumblr
Timely joke I found on Tumblr

 

The month wasn’t all bad. There were some special, memorable occasions:

September 2, right before I got sick, was a whirlwind day with Sharise. We went for a Hot Air Baloon ride with Sundance Balloons near Waterloo. It was quite an experience! The balloon is totally at the mercy of the wind, and it literally just floats along with the wind: No steering! And the only noise was when the fire thruster thing made fire. Truth be told, I would never have done anything like this if Sharise hadn’t dragged me along encouraged me to go with her.

 

Hot air balloon getting its hot air
Hot air balloon getting its hot air

Hot air balloon filled up
Hot air balloon filled up

Selfie during the hot air balloon ride

Sunrise, and view of another hot air balloon from our hot air balloon
Sunrise, and view of another hot air balloon from our hot air balloon

View from the hot air balloon
View from the hot air balloon

Sharise and I after the hot air balloon touched down
Sharise and I after the hot air balloon touched down

Then we went straight from Waterloo to downtown Toronto for Fan Expo! This “nerd convention” is a perennial favourite of mine. We didn’t have a lot of time to spend there, but we got in some fun photo ops.

Dressing up in fancy costumes at the "Outlander" booth
Dressing up in fancy costumes at the “Outlander” booth

I got a stuffed Charmander!
I got a stuffed Charmander!

The matching Star Wars t-shirts seemed appropriate for this photo. It was at a booth promoting Jane's chicken nuggets
The matching Star Wars t-shirts seemed appropriate for this photo. It was at a booth promoting Jane’s chicken nuggets

In a Star Trek captain's chair made of Mega Blocks. It's a shame I had the wrong shirt on...
In a Star Trek captain’s chair made of Mega Blocks. It’s a shame I had the wrong shirt on…
Animated gif of being on a transporter at the Canada Post 50th Anniversary Star Trek booth
Animated gif of being on a transporter at the Canada Post 50th Anniversary Star Trek booth

 

And we finished that busy day with a trip to a Paint Lounge, and, quite appropriately, the theme was painting gradients featuring Hot Air Balloons:

 

Sharise working on her hot air balloon painting
Sharise working on her hot air balloon painting

Posing with my hot air balloon painting
Posing with my hot air balloon painting

Hot Air Balloon Paintings
Hot Air Balloon Paintings

Hot Air Balloon Paintings
Hot Air Balloon Paintings

 

And, last but not least, I ended the month with a big expense. My beloved little Acura 1.7 EL had finally reached the end of its road. I knew it was coming: The tires were threadbare, its fuel economy was getting worse and worse, it had trouble going uphill, the power doors didn’t work anymore, and it was making a disconcerting rattling noise. So it was necessary to buy a new car. I bit the bullet and got a Honda CR-V SE AWG! It’s family sized!

Selfie with my new car!
Selfie with my new car!

 

 

QUANTITATIVE GOALS:

Goal: Reduce Body Fat to 35 pounds by the end of 2016
Status: It’s what I expected.

Date Weight (pounds) Body Fat % Body Fat (pounds)
December 31, 2015 194.4 24.9% 48.4
February 2, 2016 194.0 26.9% 47.9
March 1, 2016 193.8 24.4% 46.9
March 28, 2016 198.4 25.5% 50.6
April 26, 2016 200.0 25.8% 51.6
May 31, 2016 202.4 26.8% 54.2
June 27, 2016 207.4 27.9% 57.8
July 26, 2016 208.6 30.3% 63.2
August 30, 2016 213.8 30.7% 65.6
September 27, 2016 215.4 32.2% 67.9

Losing two weeks of training and losing spirit ended the way I expected. It’s discouraging to have set a goal back in January and gone totally in reverse, so badly.

 

 

Goal: My average hours of sleep will be at least 8 hours per night in 2016
Status: Average 7.15 Ouch

Nightly hours of sleep September 2016

 

To be fair, getting very absorbed in reading the book probably hurt me mid-month as I was trying to recover from the flu.

I think if I want to average 8 hours of sleep a night, I need to plan to sleep 9 hours, because little things always seem to nip time from the start and end of that scheduled sleep time.

 

Goal: I will earn at least 6.5 more PMP PDU’s by the end of 2016
Status: +2!

I finally finished that online web module on Managing Project Human Resources. That only took 4 months! *eye roll*

It was a good module though: It had pieces about motivating and working with people which are good skills to have in general.

Just 1 more PDU and I will have all I need for this cycle!

 

QUALITATIVE GOALS:

Goal: Save Money

This was definitely not a good month for money. Obviously, buying a NEW CAR was a HUGE expense. It was necessary, and I knew I would have to at some time, but parting with such a large down payment then having to deal with ongoing car payments is a bit of a drag.

And our adventures on September 2 with the hot air ballooning, Fan Expo, and painting were great, but a very expensive day overall.

Definitely having to clamp down in October…


NEXT STEPS

It was disappointing that I wasn’t able to pace the Oakville Half-Marathon. I had to work the afternoon before, so I wouldn’t have been in great shape to run that morning anyways. So, I guess it was necessary in a lot of ways that I withdrew.

I am working a lot more this fall, and picking up a lot of overtime. Normally if I’m forced into overtime I take it as “lieu time.” When over 50% of my salary goes to taxes, I feel disinclined to throw even more money at the government. But, I feel like I need the money so desperately over the next year that I’ll scrounge for whatever scraps I can get.

I am still pacing the Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Half-marathon at 2:45 That’s a blistering slow pace of 7:49 min/km (7:25 min/km walk-adjusted). I was tempted to withdraw SO many times. It would have been so much simpler to just give up. But, having that Juggernaut of a challenge looming was necessary to get me off of my butt and back into gear.

It’s rather humbling to think that at this time last year, 21km was an easy run in preparing for the New York City Marathon. This year I’m so out of shape that I’m gasping at 12km.

 


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2 Comments »

  1. Lisa C Tong says:

    I hope you have fun this weekend pacing!

  2. […] September was rough, and it’s word of the month was NECESSARY. If I had to pick one word for October, it would be RELIEF! Not because anything went particularly well, but because nothing went too awfully wrong. […]