I nailed my Fueling and Hydration!

I nailed my fueling and hydration during training, and you can too!  I’ll share what works and why.  Many athletes struggle to get the perfect combination of hydration and fueling during their training and racing.  Sometimes we get it right, and sometimes we don’t.  Did you ever wonder why?  Or did you ever wonder if there was a way you could make this happen more often than not? Amateurs and elites alike all share this same common issue of trying to get that optimum fuel and hydration so that they can perform their best, feel their best, and recover their best.   So, the question is how should I and when should I? The answer is based on math, science and listening closely to our bodies. Our needs are constantly changing and we need to address it accordingly.  The following is a simple plan I have devised that has worked for me and I believe will work for you.  Simply put, the truth is that math, science and your body do not lie.  So, take those truths and use them to your advantage.

Math

First weigh yourself, completely naked before exercise.  Then weigh yourself again after exercise, completely naked, making sure to towel dry off any sweat.  Ideally your weight should be exactly the same, this says that you nailed it!  You had optimum hydration.  If you are within a pound either way, you are still on target.  If you are more than a pound either way, you need to adjust accordingly your hydration.  How do  I know about weighing myself before and after exercise?  I have the best doctor in the world for me! He is not a coach, and does not train me, but the few times a year that I see him, he always has some great advice. Last time I saw him, he mentioned this tip of weighing myself to aid in optimum hydration calculation. Hydration is vital.  Hydration lubricates our muscles, and greatly aides in performance and recovery.  But did you know that our most important muscle, our brain, utilizes a whopping 33% of all the hydration we consume? That is 1 in every 3 fluids we consume, goes exclusively to our brains.  Without proper hydration, our brains cannot function at their best.  Our brains are our most important tools because every single thing we do starts with our thoughts.

Science

Science says we lose fluid, calories, minerals and nutrients when we exercise, so we need to replace them.  But how to replace them, and by how much, and when? Amateurs and elite athletes are all the same in what we lose, but what changes is how much we lose and when.  There is a general science behind it, we generally lose xxx amount of potassium, sodium and etc.  But it is learning how much of each, that is the million dollar question for all of us.  Because when we can answer that question, we score big time!  We score in much better training, racing and recovery.  There are formulas to calculate this.  There are rules to generally follow. But then why, is it something that so many athletes struggle with?  I believe its because the only thing that is constant is change.  We all change constantly.  Therefore, we must adjust accordingly.

A starting point is to consume approximately 100 calories an hour, and adjust accordingly based on your needs.  There are many different products to do this with.  You could have sport drinks, gels, bars, salt pills, etc.  There are many different types of products ranging from all carbohydrate based to protein and fat based.  The choice is yours, because only you will know how your body responds best.  And remember your body is always changing, so from day to day, you may need different types of products or different amounts.  Hence my next part of my plan, and the most important part, which is listening to your body.

There are so many different factors that add into how much fuel and hydration we may need.  Some days we may be more hydrated, or we may be still recovering from a previous workout, or lack of sleep, but one thing is certain, no two workouts are ever the same because we are never the same.  Even the weather can effect how much hydration and fuel we each need. We need to take everything into consideration and really learn how to listen closely to our bodies.

Listening to your body

Listening to your body is the most important thing you can do.  It’s important to listen to your body before, during and after exercise.  It’s important to review, compare and analyze what you do continually.  It doesn’t have to be a big project, rather just something that you are aware of constantly and keep in mind and use to your advantage.

I recently won the grand prize from Becoming Ultra, a coaching scholarship to help me in “Becoming Ultra”, and I am very excited.  It hasn’t started yet, it will start soon, but I am sure I will learn much more especially since this will be a distance greater than 26.2 miles which brings greater challenges.  But I believe my plan will still apply, its just the details that will change.  My simple plan is to listen to your body, do the math by weighing yourself, and know the science behind it.  What are you losing exactly and what works for you in replacing it?  Always listen to your body to feel fit forever. #feelfitforever

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2015 best year yet, 2016 starts awesome

2015 has been my best year yet!  So many wonderful things happened to me in 2015.  I was selected to be a Pearl Izumi Sponsored athlete, which has been a great honor that I have enjoyed thoroughly.  It has brought me to new heights, both personally and professionally.  I ran more miles in 2015 than any year prior, since I started running in late 2010, despite I also ran less months, than the months I was not able to run, due to my injuries in the beginning of the year and my surgery in the summer.  I had brain surgery in July 2015, was back running September 2015 and back racing early November 2015. I overcame so many severe challenges and yet enjoyed so many huge accomplishments, all in the same year!  2015 I accomplished more in so many areas of my life than I ever imagined I would, even though I love imagining and visualizing attaining my goals.  I believe many times, that it is as you go along during the year and make new challenges, that is when you may wind up surprising yourself because I never set out to do all the many things I accomplished in 2015.  I also I never could have imagined all the many severe challenges that I would have to face during the year.  It was my most powerful year to date, both personally and professionally.  I now have the feeling, more than ever, that I really can do anything I put my mind to, no matter what.  I have endured so many different severe struggles for the past several years and have thankfully been able to overcome them.

I believe thoughts become things.  I believe we must focus, diligently, on our thoughts, but in a very positive way.  No negativity.  When you feel negativity trying to get you, either from your environment or your own thoughts, you must re-focus and stay positive always.  The point is that it DOES NOT MATTER WHAT STRUGGLE you are going through, the POINT is that YOU CAN OVERCOME it.  Everyone has their own struggles.  There is always someone who will have it better than you, and there will always be someone who has it worse than you, but none of that matters to how you need to handle your struggles and how you go about overcoming them.  You need to focus on you and your thoughts, it is then that you can truly help others, because you will be your best.  You need to feel genuinely good for others and their successes.  You need to feel good about your successes, even the small ones, because they all add up to big successes.

2016 is already sizing up to be a fabulous year!  Pearl Izumi asked me back as a sponsored athlete for 2016.  I am also now a sponsored athlete for Honey Stinger.  It is such a great honor to be able to represent such awesome companies.  I won some contests this year and it is only 2 weeks into the new year.  I was never one to win anything prior to this, therefore winning these prizes have been so much more than just winning the prizes, it has made me feel like a million bucks to have been selected for these prizes more than words can say.  I won Optic Nerve EyeGlasses based on who I consider my hero.  I consider my hero to be the new me.  It would be great if I could go back and help the old me, back in January 2010 when I weighed 100 pounds more.  I started my weight loss and fitness journey at a huge deficit, because I did not have the tools, knowledge or access to anyone who could help me.  I had no idea where to begin or where to go for information.  I had no support, no one in my life that knew about nutrition, fitness and health.  Instead, I took it upon myself to read as much as possible.  One book led to another, then another and another.  I also tried to talk to everyone I came in contact with and decided that every single person had something I could learn from, even if it was not to do something.  It was critical that I observed everything and everyone and figured out what would work for me through trial and error.  I didn’t know when I started my journey that it would turn into all that it has, it is my passion, it is my life.  I created ‘FeelFitForever’ because back in January 2010, I knew that is what I wanted, although at the time I didn’t know how.  I had lost weight before but not kept it off.  I didn’t feel good.  I wanted to feel fit forever.  I focused on that thought, diligently, everyday, and taught myself, little by little, how to go about it.  I think it’s a truly incredible story to have not known what to do, or where to go for the answers, but to just have that passion inside me to discover for myself how to do it. You can do anything you set your mind to.

I won some contests this year including a free race entry into a dream race, recently, it was absolutely thrilling!  I was shocked that I won and feel like I am still in shock now, as I haven’t decided yet which race or distance.  I was shocked to have won any of the prizes I have won, but I am so very thankful for all my many blessings.  It means the world to me, to be acknowledged and appreciated.  We all need to feel like we make a difference.  I love sharing my journey.  I love being able to help people.  I am studying for my ACSM Certifaction, I am currently an ACSM member and just became certified in Adult CPR/AED from the American Red Cross.

My blog’s first year 2015 has been a huge success in my opinion, considering I didn’t put that much effort into it, yet I still had 1400 views in 2015, with over 1700 followers .  I don’t pay for any help in promoting my blog or Facebook page or anything and love that I was able to engage so many followers all on my own efforts.  I really appreciate all of you and thank you all very much for following me and enjoying my posts.  I intend to post more in 2016, and look forward to sharing more about my journey and adventures.

In December 2015 I won a great book, ‘Running your first Ultra’, by Krissy Moehl, which was perfect timing because that is the next distance I would like to challenge myself to.  I had many accomplishments in 2015 including 2 medals in 2 days.  It was my first time I did back to back races.  I did a half marathon one day, and then the next day I did a triathlon. I also accomplished 4 races in 10 days, less than 2 weeks, which was a huge accomplishment for me.  I love challenging myself because I know that the only person we should ever be in competition with is ourselves.  I ran more miles in 2015 than ever before, I also ran faster and at higher elevation, yet I spent more time not running in 2015, than running.  This was due to both injury early in the year, and then surgery over the summer, that stopped me from being able to run.  My surgery was a surprise, and it all happened so fast.  Benign lesions were found accidentally, and thankfully removed, with no complications. Yet it was a long road back.  I was allowed to start exercising 2 months after surgery.  I had lost all of my strength.  I was able to do very little at first.  I started on level 1 on my Total Gym, and only a few short exercises that where incredibly difficult for me at the time. I am now on level 6 and can do anything.  At first, I could only be in certain positions and had to make sure there was no way I would fall or get hurt.  It has been a long, hard road that I feel so very blessed to have been able to endure and enjoy.  I feel much better off now having gone through all that I have.

I feel very blessed for all my challenges and accomplishments.  My faith is very strong, I believe that we must put God first in our lives, and never lose faith.  Everything falls into place when you let go, and let God.  I believe we need to genuinely want the best for others, help others, don’t judge others, don’t judge yourself, analyze yourself to help propel yourself to the next level, and learn from everything.  You have the potential to create a life that has everything you love.  I believe you can create the life you want by learning how.  success is th esum of small things repeated day in day outI believe in lifelong learning.  Lifelong learning helps you to feel fit forever.  #feelfitforever #PearlIzumiRun #HoneyStingerHive #OpticNerveEyewear #ACSM  #KrissyMoehl #AmericanRedCross

I lost 100 lbs on my own and kept it off

Lorraine 100 lb weight loss WITH TEXT PicMonkey Collage

I lost 100 lbs. on my own about 5 years ago.  In January 2010, I weighed more than pictured above on left, where I thought I actually looked pretty good at the time in August 2009.  But by January 2010 I gained quite a bit more weight than pictured.   My body hurt from head to toe from all that extra weight.  Imagine carrying a heavy 100 lb backpack everywhere you went?  It seems unimaginable, and impossible for most people perhaps, but that is exactly what someone who needs to lose that amount of weight is doing every single day, they are actually carrying that weight around and it hurts and its exhausting.  I knew I needed to do something, I couldn’t live like that anymore, I felt miserable.  I had tried many times before to lose weight, but not only was it very hard, but the weight would always come back.  Pictured above on the left is me in August 2009, where I thought I actually looked pretty good, and yet I was still at an unhealthy weight.  By January 2010, I had gained so much weight that my size 20 clothes were too tight.  I was so disgusted with myself that I stopped weighing myself.   I lost about 100 pounds.  I base this both how much I weighed when I had last weighed myself in January 2010, and my weight loss started in size 20 clothes which were too tight.  By July 2011, in about a year and a half, I went down to a size 2!   July 2011, size 2, is pictured here on the right.  I never wanted my picture taken when I was really heavy.  I don’t even want my picture taken now if I happen to gain a little bit of weight, like I did post brain surgery last year in 2015.  I don’t think many people like their picture taken when they feel they don’t look good.  But when I think back to this picture on the left, I remember thinking I looked really good.  I worked hard to lose some weight for that vacation and was proud at my accomplishment at that time.  But just a few months later I had gained all the weight back plus some more.  I was then at my highest weight in January 2010.

I knew I needed to do something very different to lose weight this time.  I didn’t want to go back and forth with my weight loss anymore.  I wanted to feel good.  I wanted to be able to do things with my kids and not be in pain or get tired so easily.  This time, I wanted the weight to stay off.

I wanted to ‘feel fit forever’.  That was the first time I coined the phrase ‘feel fit forever’ that I would turn into my own personal way of living.  I figured it all out by myself.  I did this by learning as much as I could, analyzing my progress continuously, making adjustments, and I kept my focus and consistency.   I started learning everything I could about nutrition, fitness and health.  I applied everything I learned to my life and I kept learning.  I kept learning how to listen to my body.

It took me about a year and half to lose approximately 100 pounds.  I lost the weight by learning how to change my life permanently, not by dieting.  I changed the way I lived and the way I did everything.  I made small changes that over time added up to a completely new way of living.  At first, I just would do one small thing and not stress over all the other things I wasn’t doing healthy.  I made sure I celebrated the fact that I could do that one small change to better my health.  Such as giving up donuts.  Giving up donuts was my first small change.  It was hard for me since my office always had them brought in fresh daily.  Instead, I focused on what I could still enjoy even though it wasn’t healthy.  I allowed myself to have a flavored creamer in my coffee to help make not having the donuts possible.  Over time I got more and more used to it, and there was a point when I didn’t miss the donuts anymore.  I continued to add more and more small changes in manageable segments like that until finally it all came together as a new way of living.  I no longer even want donuts or creamer in my coffee and lots of other things.  I look forward to much healthier choices that have now been part of my daily life for so long that I can’t imagine living any other way.  I don’t believe in diets, I believe in changing how you live and listening to your body, being patient and trusting the process and celebrating each small success to feel fit forever.  #feelfitforever

Duct tape comforting?

I have found duct tape can be comforting because it can fix just about anything, and yet in doing so can do so much more for you than you ever imagined.  I have found it very empowering.  For the last several years, I’ve been using duct tape to fix so many things, both inside and outside of my home, including my vehicle.  I have used it instead of doing standard repairs or replacements because I do not have the money right now as it is going towards more important things.  Duct tape has saved me in so many different situations, such as one time my door on my vehicle wouldn’t close because the latch broke and I couldn’t drive it home like that with the door swinging open, so I duct taped it and was able to drive.

Duct tape empowers you to be able to keep going.  You can use it in the wilderness while trail running or hiking if your equipment breaks or even if you hurt yourself, duct tape can be used to help stabilize it and keep you mobile to get to where there is help.  Your imagination is your only limit.  I never would have imagined all the many ways I’ve used duct tape over that last several years.  I have found that sometimes desperation leads to creation in the very best way.  I recommend everyone have duct tape wherever they go because it can be used for just about anything.  The sky is the limit, you can do whatever you can imagine.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of seeing a woman in the next lane from me pumping gas and I noticed that she had used duct tape to fix the back of her winter coat.  Seeing her was very humbling and gratifying on so many levels.  It made me feel both happy and sad.   I was happy to see I wasn’t the only one using duct tape, but sad to see that she needed to use it on her clothes.  I have never used duct tape on my clothes, yet I would.  It was a good reminder that no matter how bad you think you may have it, there is always someone else who has it worse.  Plus, I always like to remember the good advice from “The Millionaire Next Door” book, which by the way is a great book that I highly recommend, it tells us how ‘looks’ can be deceiving and that many times it is the frugal person who may appear to lack wealth, who actually has far more wealth than their ‘looks’.  It is important that we all conserve our wealth because it will pay you back in so many ways including better health to feel fit forever.  #feelfitforever

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