Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Group Run or Solo Run?

When I first became a runner (about 10 years ago), I was scared. Scared of running long distances, scared of crowds, scared of running alone, scared of running in groups - the fear of the unknown was real here, y'all! Plus, I'm a huge chicken in general so yea...


In my race planning process though, I knew that I likely wouldn't be able to motivate myself enough to train for my very first half marathon on my own, so I went WAY out of my comfort zone (I mean WAY) and joined a local running group. I still remember those first few group runs - I was too shy to talk to anyone and everyone seemed as if they had already formed their own groups. So, I would show up every Saturday morning, meet up with the large group, then when everyone would break off for their runs, I would run it solo. (I don't want it to sound like I didn't speak to a single person there. My coaches were wonderful and I made "friends" while there, but I just didn't have anyone to run my distances with.)


It took an entire five or six months of this process before I started being invited to run with a group - I finally made real friends there and I'm so very glad I stuck it out. By the next season of our running group, I was no longer a solo runner, but I had my group and it was wonderful! This went on for another 8 years and it was seriously one of my favorite times of my life!

Sadly, our running group disbanded a couple of years ago and although some tried to stick together and run for a while, it definitely began to fizzle out. Sad times.


Now, I have my little running buddy (Brayden) who loves to go for a run with me as well as Orangetheory which is definitely more of that group type setting that I love. As a people person (I'm a nurse and love working with people), I crave that group type atmosphere and I'm so glad that Orangetheory gives that to me.  My oh my what a change from the shy person 10 years ago who didn't want to step foot out of her front door because she was scared!

So, do I consider myself a group runner or a solo runner? Maybe a little of both! :)

What about you? Do you prefer group running or solo running? Today, I'm also linking up with KookyRunner and Zenaida for Tuesday Topics! 

Friday, May 17, 2019

My Experience With the FASTer Way to Fat Loss Program

When I began the FASTer Way to Fat Loss program at the end of January, I knew I would be embarking on a program that would help me lose weight and feel better. What I didn't plan on was all the added benefits and bonuses that would come along the way!


What is the FASTer Way, you might ask? Well, it's a 7 week program (including prep week) where you are connected with a certified coach who assists with your individualized macro goals. The program also includes workouts of varying degrees as well as a daily "fasting" window. The best part about this program is it allows you to eat to your likes and what works best for you. It also allows you to eat carbs and is totally a do-able lifestyle for me.

Wow...does that sound overwhelming and difficult to process? I promise you, it's not. This program does take a little pre-planning, yes - but once week 2 rolled around, it almost came like second nature. Having a coach along every step of the way helped tremendously, too!

My initial program began at the end of January and carried through to the beginning of March. After this program was complete, I re-joined as a returning client for an additional 6-7 weeks which ended in the middle of April.

Within the first 6 week program, I lost 4.5 inches and 10 pounds. I also began sleeping better and noticed better performance times in my running as well as at Orangetheory. We even managed a Disney trip in there where I didn't follow the program at all because our meal plan was set and in place long before I decided to do this program. Please note: I didn't go to Disney World and eat all the cupcakes. I did indulge on a daily basis in a sweet, but I didn't go overboard. :)

My sleep improved tremendously and I also noticed that I had a TON of extra energy!

During the 2nd program as a returning client, I was excited to return and attempt a full cycle that didn't include a vacation. At first, I was a little iffy about the benefits of the returning client round but now that it's complete, I'm definitely glad I did it. Having the option of continuing to work with a coach and really get the basis of the program down did a world of good for me. This won't be the same in every case but for me, I needed that additional time to really cement this lifestyle into my brain. Also, please note - while I did partake in a couple of Faster Way workouts here and there, I mostly stuck to Orangetheory and long runs on the weekends.

It was during this second round where several non-scale victories took place:



I somehow managed 2 PR's in the same weekend in both the 5K and 10K distances. Both PR's were from races before I had Brayden which shocked me completely! I've never run this fast in my life!


My HDL or "good cholesterol" improved and it's been in the "red zone" for at least 2 years now...


This was something  I wasn't counting on and could not have been more shocked when I saw my results!


Marathon Month also took place at Orangetheory in April and I somehow managed to place first in my age group (Half Women's 30-39 in case you can't make out the image above).


Additionally, I was also able to purchase shorts in a size I haven't ever fit in as far as I can remember!

I also lost 4 additional pounds during this round and an additional 7.5 inches.

In total since January, that's 14 pounds down and 12 inches lost! 


If you came here looking for before and afters well, sorry...I don't have those. What I can tell you is that I carry most of my weight around my mid-section (always have) and while that is currently shrinking, it still needs more work.

Will I continue with the FASTer Way on my own? Absolutely. After having completed 2 rounds, I definitely feel as if I have the tools to carry me through and hopefully the amazing results will continue!

Interested in joining in the next round? Well, you're in luck because my friend and coach Jen is starting another round in just a few weeks. If you have any questions at all, please don't hesitate to ask!

Although this post does contain affiliate links, I believe in this program 100% and would tell anyone the same things mentioned above, affiliate or not. :)

Have a fabulous weekend, friends!

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